How old is a “primordial forest”? What do porpoises look like? And how many babies does one Baltic herring produce? Interactive answers to many questions about the Baltic Sea and the Western Pomerania Lagoon Area National Park are available at the Natureum, a special branch of the German Maritime Museum.
At the centre of the national park is a place where you can experience history and the environment first hand: the Natureum natural history museum. Various stations around the old Darßer Ort lighthouse invite visitors to learn more about the unique, vulnerable nature here on the Darß. The 20,000 litre saltwater aquarium even lets visitors look the marine life of the Baltic Sea right in the eye.
Just 134 steps to the top of the old lighthouse and you’ll be rewarded with a wonderful vista across the constantly changing landscape of Darßer Ort and the open sea. On clear weather days you can even see the Danish islands of Falster and Mon on the horizon. Although the brick giant already has kept a watchful eye on the sea for 160 years, it remains in active operation to this day.
The former lighthouse keeper’s house now houses over three floors of exhibits about the natural habitat at Darßer Ort, the Baltic Sea, and its constantly shifting coastline. Things get a bit more mysterious down in the cellar, home to the Darß Forest at night exhibit, where you can see displays about the forest’s night creatures.
The perfect way to get in the mood for a visit to the Natureum is to combine it with an approximately five kilometre hike through the Darß Forest. And on the way back, you can test your new-found knowledge of both flora and fauna. This forest hike is also a good pairing with a trip to the West Beach.