Where can you find fabulous little museums, historical old buildings that date back centuries, festivals that are fun for everyone, all within the Lauenburgische Seen Nature Park? You can find it in Ratzeburg, known as the Island City since it’s connected to the mainland by three dams.
One of the best museums here is Barlach Museum dedicated to the work of German sculptor and writer Ernst Barlach (1870-1938), who’s buried here in Ratzeburg. His beautiful sculpture artwork can be found at Ratzeburg Cathedral (built in 1170), the Magdeburger Cathedral, and even the National Museum in Nuremberg.
Art of a religious nature can be found at Parish Church Petri (built 1787) and Parish Church George originally built in 1066. But the Ratzeburger Cathedral is a class of its own, it was dedicated by Henry the Lion.
The A. Paul Weber Museum is filled with the works of this German painter and writer (1893-1980) who lived right here in town. During the turbulent days of the 1920’s and ’30’s, besides writing satire on politics and National Socialism, he was editor of a resistance magazine, landing him in a stint in prison.
Learn more about these two celebrated artists and more about the town’s history at the Local History Museum, housed in the old manor house. Another way to learn about Ratzeburg is to mingle with locals. Its Middle Ages Market and City Celebration (held in August) with food, fun, and lots of fanfare is one of the best way to rub elbows the town’s residents.
To get away from it all, hike out in the Naturparkweg, a nature trail running through the area of Ratzeburg and linked to four other nature parks within Schleswig-Holstein. This is where you’ll find the Ratzeburger See and the Schaalsee, the main attraction at the annual June Regatta.
But, if you keep hiking you’ll find 40 little lakes scattered throughout the nature park and so much more!