Day 1 of My travel diary - At the North Sea, in the biggest coastal city of Germany
Spring Travel 2019
Bremerhaven is the hometown of one of my dearest friends (we were once flatmates). She is one great world traveller. That she is a super guide for Bremerhaven, was something I was lucky to experience in person. As I stepped out of the train station one Saturday morning, she and her boyfriend picked me up. We drove straight to the Container-Aussichtsturm (Look Out tower). Yeah talk about diving right in ;) The tower is actually made of ship containers and offers a 360 Degree view over a part of the Port.
Since it was a sunny day (and the sun is not always shining in the north of the country), she suggested we go the beach. Now Bremerhaven has a beach, on the banks of the river 'Weser' (where it meets the sea). For a proper North Sea beach experience, you may want to drive to Wremen or Cuxhaven. She chose the latter. Which was a merry 30 minute drive. On arrival, all of us found solace in the familiarity of the North Sea coast: the lush green dikes blocking the view of receded waters, the narrow sandy entrance to the beach, the hovering seagulls and not to forget visitors in hats, googles and flip flops.
You need to buy a ticket called 'Kurtaxe' (guest tax) at the beach entrance. Else you will be fined if caught without.
But we were also hungry. So first we opted for 'Fisch-Brotchen' (fish sandwiched between big buns or even almost like a burger): A North Sea specialty. My suggestion would be try 'Backfisch-Brötchen': which means fried fish. As not everyone likes a slab of cold fish between bread. Often eaten with a honey-mustard sauce or Meerettich (horse radish in cream) or dill- yogurt sauce. And yes, German holiday food: hot Pommes (fingerchips) with mayonnaise and ketchup is the standard side dish. There will be stalls, huts and shops titled 'Fisch-Brötchen.'
Something that is very dear to all the local coast-lovers is the 'Strandkorb.' (Strand: Beach, Korb: Basket). Very typical to German shores.
Our Motto for the weekend was to relax. So we took a long walk in the sand, strolled in the extremely shallow waters (low tide), shared lemon flavored canned beer and just lay down on the sand to take a mini siesta. It was time to head back. By chance, we came across tulip fields.
We love to pick out our own bouquet. There wont always be someone standing around. So you pick your flowers, calculate the total price depending on whats listed on the display board and deposit the cash or coins in the box. Here it works on trust :)
Since it was still afternoon, we wanted to go for coffee and cake alongside Bremerhaven's famous fish market: Fiedler. By the time we reached there, the market was closed and the cafe as well. But I had seen the market on a previous visit. It is a really nice little place to look into if you like fish and love markets :) So we opted for one of the al fresco dinner options along the dock right next to it.
Many of us love Alster: a drink made for you by mixing 50 % Beer and 50 % Sprite. Very refreshing :) I am not a beer person. But I do enjoy Alster.
Spring evenings are quite long. The sun actually tests your patience, as it sinks into the horizon at snail's pace between 7 and 8 pm. This was one such eve and our next stop was the tower: Leuchtfeuer "Geeste Südfeuer" which also looks over the Lighthouse 'Geestemole'. It seemed to be a popular spot with the locals, as cars lined up right next to the tower to watch the sunset. (you can spot them on the picture below:)) Every moment was breathtaking, each angle picturesque.
Once the sun disappeared into the sea, our gorgeous day was awaiting one more highlight! My friends took me to the oldest Cafe (since 1839) in the city: Alt Bremerhaven (alt:old). A recommended cultural experience! It is located in the city center (Innenstadt: innen:inner, stadt:city): where you will find plenty of opportunity to shop. As they have the usual city stores with international brands.
By late evening, I had soaked in the vibes of the coastal backdrop and was already in awe of the place. The idea was to check out the heart of the city the next day. But first, we still had much chatting to catch up on :) (Click here for Travel Diary Day 2- exploring the heart of Bremerhaven).