The 1500 km European Route of Brick Gothic connects several countries along the Baltic Sea including Denmark, Poland and Germany, and takes visitors on a journey through the architectural treasures of the medieval Hanseatic League. The German part of the route runs from Flensburg through Schleswig, Wismar, Stralsund, the island of Rügen to Wolgast, the gateway to the Baltic Sea island of Usedom.
Since the age of the Hanseatic League, centuries of abbeys and knights have left their mark along the Baltic Coast and its inland roads; however, the most enduring cultural remnant of the Middle Ages is the brick Gothic architecture that can be found along the route to this very day. The region was dominated by the Hanseatic League in the Middle Ages and the Vikings, Teutonic knights and later, the Reformation, also left their mark on the Baltic Sea region.
More than just a few old bricks
Historic symbols of both the secular and religious powers of the Middle Ages such as abbeys, town halls, city gates, ramparts and ecclesiastical buildings remain intact to this day. Red cathedral towers, city gates and mansions; it is clear that the townscape of these Baltic Sea towns is still defined by the typical brick architecture of the period.
Brick Gothic: a cultural asset
Every one of the distinctive red bricks used in this style of architecture was made and laid by hand and each building is unique with its own distinctive history. The richly decorated façades and mighty towers also form striking landmarks within the city walls. Many such landmarks are still being used for their original purpose, whilst others have been converted to concert halls and museums.
Experience a wealth of culture
The European Route of Brick Gothic not only lets you follow in the footsteps of history and great powers. Elements of modern life along the route also give you many opportunities to get to know different peoples and cultures. Thanks to the region's healthy climate, many of the bathing houses along the Baltic Sea region go back centuries and even today, they are housed in seaside villas built in the early 20th century. In addition to the architectural wonders, visitors can also enjoy the region's outstanding natural beauty.
There's still more to go!
The Baltic Sea coast is a real paradise for watersports enthusiasts, cockle-pickers and amber hunters, whilst the region's numerous nature parks and bird sanctuaries are perfect for hikers and nature lovers. The whole region can also be appreciated from the water on a boat, ship or ferry excursion. Visitors can even join famous long-distance cycle routes such as the Berlin-Copenhagen Cycle Route or the Baltic Coast Cycle Route which also cross the European Route of Brick Gothic.
Length: approximately 1500 km
Theme: culture of the Middle Ages and the Hanseatic League
Flensburg: churches, historical harbour, museums
Greifswald: museum harbour, old quarter, churches
Rügen Island: Cape Arkona, sea resorts, chalk cliffs
Lüneburg: Lüne Abbey, St. Michaelis Church (St. Michaeliskirche), the Stintmarkt quarter by the harbour
Neubrandenburg: Four Gates City, culture park, churches
Ribnitz-Damgarten: St. Clare's Convent and amber museum
Schleswig: Gottorf Palace, Hedeby Viking Museum (Winkinger Museum Haithabu), St. John's Abbey (St. Johanniskloster)
Stralsund: UNESCO World Heritage Site, Ozeaneum aquarium, harbour
Wolgast: churches, museums, zoo
Haderslev: old quarter, cathedral
Olsztyn: castle, Olsztyn Castle, Church of Our Saviour (Erlöserkirche)
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