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Ostfriesland - East Frisia

Ostfriesland, the northwestern corner of Germany, is proverbial for jokes about the inhabitants, but few people know about its rich history and hor much there is to see.

Updated February 24, 2017
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  1. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Emden, Germany
    Larrelt is a village West of Emden which is now part of the city. The old church is a typical example of East Frisian village churches. The massive gothic church is surrounded by the cemetery. The steeple is, compared to the nave, rather short. T…
  2. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Greetsiel, Germany
    Greetsiel's brick church dates back to around 1400. Above the entrance you find the coat of arms of count Eduard Cirksena and his wife, a Swedish princess. The Cirksena family owned a castle in Greetsiel, which has been demolished in the 18th century…
  3. Cheap "Sights & Attractions" in Emden, Germany
    The oldest harbour basin leads into the heart of the town. It ends in the central market square and next to the town hall. It is surrounded by boardwalks which allow a pleasant promenade walk. This is the most beautifiul part of Emden. The most promi…
  4. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Greetsiel, Germany
    The fishing boats in the harbour are mostly shrimpers that set out in the shallow tidal waters, let their nets down and fish for Krabben (shrimps). The nets are attached to masts that can be lowered to both sides of the boat. The harbour used to b…
  5. Average priced "General Tips & Advice" in Emden, Germany
    The so-called Friesennerz ("Frisian Mink") is by no means an expensive fur coat. This is the nickname of a certain type of rain coats that were first worn by fishermen and sailors and became popular in the 1970s and 1980s. I remember that we bought t…
  6. Free! "General Tips & Advice" in Emden, Germany
    A friend in Emden (thanks Silvia!) once gave me a lesson about the 'ceremonial' afternoon tea in Ostfriesland. There are a few things one should know when participating. So here are her 'instructions of use': Ostfriesentee (East Frisian Tea) is a …
  7. Cheap "Sights & Attractions" in Emden, Germany
    The gate once served as entrance to the city on the northern side of Delft harbour basin. Only the arch and gable are left of the gate building. The renaissance gate is dated 1635. Historians will notice: In those times most of Germany was down t…
  8. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Greetsiel, Germany
    On top of the dike you'll find a paved hiking path. Since the top of the dike is the highest, actually the only, elevation in the countryside you have the best landscape views from there. Walking along the dike, one can discover picturesque spots …
  9. Cheap "Sights & Attractions" in Emden, Germany
    The library building is in fact the former Große Kirche, the Great Church, Emden's main parish church and the mother church of the Calvinists in the whole Northwest of Germany. The late gothic church was badly damaged in World War II. Only the outer…
  10. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Emden, Germany
    The so-called Kesselschleuse connects four canals that all have different water levels. Each of the four has a lock that leads into the central basin, from which the boat then exits through another lock into one of the other canals. The quadruple …
  11. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Emden, Germany
    The "New Church" was actually new in 1648, at the end of the 30 year war. While the rest of Germany was devastated and a third to half of the population killed, Emden escaped the war thanks to its vicinity to and political association with the Nether…
  12. Free! "General Tips & Advice" in Emden, Germany
    In World War II, 78% of all houses in Emden were destroyed. The beautiful old town with its many renaissance houses from Emden's wealthiest period, the second half of the 16th century, is gone forever. Hardly a dozen of these old houses have surv…
  13. Cheap "General Tips & Advice" in Emden, Germany
    The region of Ostfriesland (East Frisia) belongs to the off the beaten path areas in Germany which are hardly visited by foreign travellers and is rarely looked at by many Germans either - although it offers a lot more than one might think. To me, it…
  14. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Greetsiel, Germany
    Ostfriesland's wet marshlands, parts of which are situated below seal level, have two choices: drowning in saltwater or drowning in freshwater, unless they take measures to keep the water out. A system of canals runs through the marshes. Village name…
  15. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Rysum, Germany
    The village church on top of the round Warft was built in the 15th century. The choir was enlarged and topped with the steeple a century later. The interior is plain and very 'calvinist', except the gothic gallery in the west of the church, dated 151…
  16. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Rysum, Germany
    Rysum is an old and typical Rundwarftendorf, built on a round artificial hill (Warft). The houses assemble in a circle around the church. The hill is 6 metres high and used to be the village's only protection from floods before the dikes along the ne…
  17. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Greetsiel, Germany
    The twin windmills on the outskirts of the village have become one of Ostfriesland's best-known landmarks. They are not really twins, as they were built in different times and used for different purposes. But the pair of them has become iconic. Th…
  18. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Greetsiel, Germany
    Greetsiel is a romantic village with picturesque old houses. Those around the harbour date from the 17th century. Brick is the traditional material. The architecture looks almost Dutch. The Netherlands are not far and Ostfriesland has always be assoc…
  19. Free! "Sights & Attractions" in Emden, Germany
    Windmills have been built on the highest elevations of the town - the ramparts. The fortifications have long been turned into a park. Some of the windmills are still there. Most have been 'beheaded' so that only the brick building without the wings i…
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