Often referred to as Bremen’s little sister, Bremerhaven is the largest port city along Germany’s North Sea coast. There was a time when this charming seaside town had the largest fishing and emigration port in Europe, which is the reason why many choose to visit.
Whether you’re visiting Bremen and want to take a day trip, or wish to experience an off-the-beaten-track destination for a few days, here are a few reasons to sway your decision.
With Bremerhaven being a port city, you get the best of both worlds – a bustling metropolis and a nearby beach, only a short walk from the train station. In the city centre, you can wander around the Historisches Museum Bremerhaven and shop in the Mediterraneo, an indoor shopping mall.
After a long day of exploring the city and its fascinating attractions, you may wish to relax on the beach and breathe in the fresh sea air. Within a few minutes, you’ll find yourself relaxed in a wicker chair on a long strip of white sand, watching large ships sail down the River Weser. Cafés line the back of the coastline, providing cold drinks and light snacks that are ideal for tourists sunbathing and enjoying the views.
During the 19th century, Bremerhaven was a busy trade port that safely transported almost 77,000 German migrants to the ‘New World’, which we now know as New York. This event made Bremerhaven home to Europe’s biggest emigration port, now celebrated in the German Emigration Center Museum.
Many people travel to Bremerhaven to see this exhibition and learn more about the city’s captivating maritime heritage. When wandering around, you’ll see real names and destinations of the emigrants recorded during that period. Personal accounts about the journey on board and lifelike re-enactments help to show what life was like at the time.
Location & Proximity
You may be unaware that Bremerhaven means ‘Bremen’s harbour’ which came about because it appears as an extension of the city state of Bremen. Located only 60 kilometres apart, you can travel between the two cities in less than an hour – how convenient.
Whether you’re looking to stay in Bremerhaven for a few days or visit on a day trip from Bremen, you’ll have to fly a short distance into Bremen and complete the journey by car or train, because Bremerhaven doesn’t have an airport. Other travel options include flying into Hamburg before driving or catching a train through Buxtehude to the seaside city.
Most of the activities, attractions and even food will have some relation to the sea and iconic harbour, whether it’s a museum inside a previously used ship, a tour along the coastline or a fish dish that’ll make your mouth water. A tourist favourite is the German Maritime Museum that holds model ships and relics like the Bremen Cog, a well-preserved cog that dates back to 1380.
Carry on your marine-based outing by stepping on board several ships, included in the museum and docked in the old harbour nearby. The U-Boat, Wilhelm Bauer, will stand out against the other historical ships with its unique shape. This German Navy ship is the only remaining model of its kind, so don’t miss it.
During a city break, trying the local food is bound to be on your to-do list and, in the seaside city of Bremerhaven, you can expect plenty of delicious fish dishes on the menu. The Seute Deern, a wooden cargo ship used in the 1900s, is now an outdoor restaurant where you can indulge in tasty delicacies with a view of the harbour.
Choose to sit in the city centre and engross yourself in the hustle and bustle or eat around the harbour to enjoy both good food and views. We recommend trying the home-smoked halibut amongst many other popular fish dishes; its fragrant flavour makes it stand out from the rest.
If these reasons make you want to book a holiday to Bremerhaven, call us today on 0800 988 3369 or contact us via our website. We’ll tailor-make your holiday to include all of the destinations you wish to visit.