Sassnitz just out on the Jasmund Peninsula on the Baltic Sea. While it does have a “resort” feel to the place, it really is a place of some fantastic natural beauty. That it has a submarine (HMS Otus) in the water operating as a floating museum, is an extra added bonus!
The best thing about Sassnitz is that the old fishing port town is STILL an old fishing port town. It’s got that salt air flavor and small colorful fishing boats heading out for a hard day’s work. So important is the Baltic Sea, Sassnitz also has a marina and ferry port.
Of course there’s the Old Town, where you’ll find Town Hall. And out in the Dwasiedener Forest are the ruins of Schloss Dwasieden. It’s too bad about the castle; this fantastic sandstone and marble masterpiece was leveled by the communists in 1948.
What everyone really comes for is the Jasmund National Park and the chalk cliffs (the most famous section of the cliffs is known as the Königsstuhl, or King’s Chair). While it might be one of the smallest parks in the entire country as far as size; but, this park packs a whollop. Rare birds and plants are found within; and just after a storm is the best time to go fossil hunting.
Another type of “nature” site is the Alaris Butterfly Park where you see the little creatures flying around in a “tropical” setting. It only costs a few Euro and the kids are gonna love it.
The whole family will go crazy over all of Sassnitz’s festivals. There’s a Children’s Celebration at the Tierpark (animal park), a Midsummer’s Fire (a Swedish tradition, no less!), and the Main Street Celebration which is on the last weekend in June.
In the third weekend in July is the Sassnitz Sailing Celebration and the Rügener Port Days are the weekend beforehand. August brings on the Summer Celebration and no German town is worth its weight in (sea) salt without the obligatory Christmas Market — which in Sassnitz is on the 1st weekend of Advent on the Christian calendar (or, about 3-4 weeks before Christmas).
It won’t make a world of difference what calendar you use to plan your trip to Sassnitz, the Ice Age inspired landscape will leave you breathless and all the sites around town will leave you happy.