Take a good whiff. Smell that? That’s the salt air of the Baltic Sea here in the town of Süsel. OK, I know I’m exaggerating a tad bit, but in all actuality, Süsel is close enough to the sea that it could happen.
And as wonderful as the Baltic is, it comes in as a second or third choice as a swimming area in these parts. Most people head to the Süseler See first, a quiet swimming area. What’s really nice, is there are six other lakes in the region; so chances are you’ll find one to absolutely love.
While you’re out and about trekking around to see the flora and fauna, you might want to stop by the Gömnitzer Turm. Its 41-step climb offers up the best panoramic views, so try not to miss it. By the way, this tower (built at some 98-meters above sea level) was a welcome sight to sailors returning home.
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Sailors like Paul Behncke, a local boy who went on to earn the Blue Max (Pour le Mérite, Prussia’s highest merit honor), both a First and Second Class Iron Cross in World War I, and reaching the rank of Admiral in the German Navy.
That’s but a small piece of Süsel’s history. Long before Admiral Behncke wandered the streets of Süsel, the Romanesque church of St. Lawrence was built; many centuries in fact, it’s been here since 1158. And you’re close by to see the medieval/Renaissance styled Schloss Eutin, along with its Baroque Garden.
It isn’t all history and outdoorsy fun. Süsel has quite the number of cultural events to attend. The Maibaum festivities are always good, as are the Summer Festivals, the Oktoberfest (this one in September), the Christmas Bazaar, and the Apfelfest (Apple Festival) in October.
In between festivals you might want to try the town’s corn maze (in the warmer months, FYI), or try to count all the pretty thatched roof cottages (many are in the village of Gömnitz), or hike along by the Achtersee in the village of Middelburg. I think the forest walks through Zarnekau can do everyone a world of good, too.
Not to take anything away from Admiral Behncke’s accomplishments, I’m just wondering why he’d want to sail away from such a charming and idyllic place. Maybe it was the smell of the Baltic that called to him. ;-)