Day 2- Tourist attractions in and around the city center of the North Sea port
The refreshment and relaxation from our previous day accompanied us into our new morning (for Travel Diary Day 1, click here) . A typical weekend morning routine for us citizens is to visit the bakery to fetch freshly baked Brötchen (buns). They are normally crispy on the outside and soft and spongy on the inside. You can also buy different varieties: namely, Vollkorn (wholewheat), Mehrkorn (multigrain), Mohn (poppy) or even ask for a normal one (white-flour). We stuck to tradition and relished a lovely breakfast with bread spread, jams, fruit and coffee on the Winter-Terrace at my friend's home.
Our aim for the day was beautiful sights. So we started with a walk along the dyke that leads to the unmissable sight of the 'Atlantic Hotel Sail city'. The building also offers a look-out Platform at 140 meters height.
On our left was the massive mouth of the river Weser (where it meets the North Sea). If we kept walking straight, we would reach the Zoo.
The big house with red roofs, the Strandhalle (Strand: Beach, Halle: Hall) - is a Restaurant. Alongside which there is the Willy-Brandt Platz: a Dyke and massive Promenade with benches. It surrounds the Zoo.
As we walked around the zoo, we came across the 'Schleuse - Neuer Hafen' (Sea Lock- at New Harbour). It was opening at the moment we reached there and we could watch the process up-close. Very exciting for all of us who stood at the railing in anticipation. For me, this was something I have never seen before.
The Sea-Lock Process
Our Experience of the Sea-Lock Process
After watching many a sailboats make their way into the sea, we headed back into the city from the backside of the Atlantic hotel. Our route resembled a U-turn. The walk along the new harbour area is quite Picturesque. You will spot many more tourist attractions on the way.
Neuer Hafen (New Harbour) - in pictures above
Auswanderer Haus (German Emigration Center)
The German Emigration Center is the largest museum concerning the topic of Emigration in Europe. I have heard from many a friends that it is an enthralling experience. Pity that I had to leave in the afternoon, we unable to visit it.
Lined along the banks were Restaurant Ships selling local fish preparations. For example Restaurant Ship Klibfisch serves preparations of Rose Fish, Salmon, rings of octopus, shrimps (accompanied with german potato salad as side dish) and the usual array of Fisch-Brötchen (Fish in buns). Do check out the diary of Day 1 for detailed information on fish-buns at the north sea. These ships often take a winter break and open around mid-march.
Klimahaus (Climate house)- with glass surface behind the red restaurant building
The Klimahaus Bremerhaven 8 Grad Ost (Grad: Degree, Ost:East) - Is a place I have been to ten years ago. When I check its current reviews, they are just as wonderful as they were back then. I would describe it as a contemporary museum, which takes you on a journey along the longitude 8 degree east. Bremerhaven is a part of it, along with other places with rain forests, deserts, and frozen snow covered regions. So you will go from room to room and experience this journey with all your senses.. the landscapes, temperatures, the climate, the history and culture. It took me six hours to go through the entire Climate house. It was a very engaging experience with a good price-value balance.
Other Museums in the vicinity to Visit are:
-Historical Museum Bremerhaven (No entry fee) - the descriptions in the museum are in german only. But you will get a book in English to accompany your visit. For further information, I found the english reviews helpful.
- Kunstmuseum (Kunst: art)
I am not really a museum person. But I have been to the submarine and maritime museum, with friends a decade ago. It was a very exciting experience for all of us. The Bürgerpark (Bürger: citizen, Park: garden) is also very central. Would make for a lovely walk amidst flowering trees, water and lush lawns. Otherwise, if you are taking a stroll along the water (in any part of the city), almost every direction offers serene sights.
My friend had reserved for lunch at restaurant 'Treffpunkt Kaiserhafen', which is located a bit far way from the city center- in the north harbour area. Another well known restaurant with rustic, ship-like interior is 'Natusch Fischereihafen', located south of city center at the dock close to the famous fish market of 'Fiedler'. Both serve multiple types of fresh fish preparations. Regional Beer 'Becks' from Bremen often accompanies the meals.
Normally we don't make three course meals at home. But when we are out, we love to close a meal with coffee and a desert. My friend took me to her favorite Cafe: Grete's- Cafe am Kai located on the river (far away from the restaurant we were in- but very close to the fish market we had been to the day before). Here we watched over the tiny sailboats and enjoyed the sights of the distant city-center whilst sipping a hot cuppa, sitting on the wooden benches outside. Sitting in the afternoon shadows felt cold (typical spring experience). Our jackets came in handy. Amoung the visitors were quite a few cycle enthusiasts, who halted here for a tea-time indulgence.
Grete's- Cafe am Kai
So thats summing up 36 hours I spent on a spring weekend in Bremerhaven in 2019. I look forward to another visit, to catch up on what I missed this time. I would love to try out another fish restaurant, check out a different cafe, take a stroll in the Bürgerpark, visit the historical museum and the emigration center. Revisiting the sunset point at the lighthouse would be cherry on top :)