Harsewinkel is nearly 1,000 years old, and spent much of its life as a quiet agricultural center. Recently, it has been leveraging its heritage to develop a robust arts and activities schedule. As a result, the population of the town has been consistently increasing.
It’s nice to visit a place that is growing and full of unique activities. The town is also very family friendly in terms of its events and activities. There are a large number of trails and lakes for hiking and water sports.
Also, they have a fun carnival in the spring, with carousels, go karts and other kid-friendly rides, and maintain good play areas in and around the town.
Of course, there are also some good play areas for adults, too. You may want to check out the Marienfeld golf course or the privately owned motorcycle museum Heiner Beckmann, which focuses on German made bikes of the 20th century. Randomly but cutely, there is also a doll exhibition that is hosted along with the bikes, providing somewhat of a his-n-hers experience for you.
You can also walk around and check out the collection of churches. Marienfeld is named for a major monastery complex that is one district of Harsewinkel. The St. Lucia church is also worth seeing, with a neo-gothic shell covering a romanesque interior dating back to the 13th century.
At night, you will want to check the schedule at the Hotel Poppenburg. Harsewinkel doesn’t have a formal theater complex, so they have a partnership with the auditorium at the hotel for putting on shows. There are bands, community theater groups, and visiting acting troupes for reasonably rates in an intimate setting.
You will definitely want to stop for a show if The Country Eggs are performing — they are an award-winning comedy/carnival band made up of locals. They’ve won the national “carnival” hit parade contest twice. They mostly sing in German, but are funny in all languages. ;-)
As a late night activity, you can walk by the town hall and see if you are scared by the Spökenkieker statues. Honoring those with the “second sight” to see ghosts and the future, these statues are out in front of the town hall. Done up life-size in their own ghostly white, they have startled more than one guest out for a late night stroll, and show up quite well in late night photos with a flash.