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Founded in 1872, Flensburg's biggest Shipyard "Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft" (FSG) has experienced many a development in shipbuilding. In the imperial era, steamships were in demand, in the First World War submarines and minesweepers. From 1920 to 1939, mainly cargo ships were launched at FSG. Submarines followed again, then container ships and RoRo ferries. Business was not always easy: in April 2020, FSG filed for insolvency, followed by a new start about five months later. Go to the top of the Harniskai on the opposite side of the fjord for the best view of the massive shipyard hall. When a launch is announced, photographers and curious spectators gather here. More than 750 ships have been designed and built at the shipyard since its foundation.
Denmark and Germany meet at Flensburg Fjord. It is only eleven kilometres from the German city centre to Danish Kollund. The district of the Danish municipality of Krusau is a popular excursion destination - and one of the smallest border crossings in Europe. The Kollund Forest embellishes the Danish side. For some years, this forest in Denmark actually belonged to the German city of Flensburg. In 2017, however, it was taken over by the Danish Nature Foundation. One of the most popular hiking trails in the border region, the Gendarmstien, leads through the hillside forest. Hikers can stay overnight in four shelters on the shore of the fjord. Kollund also features a small natural beach, called Lille Strand. From this place, visitors can enjoy a wide view of the inner fjord.
According to locals the Flensburg Fjord is "the most beautiful fjord in the world". In fact, they may have a point. For example, the beaches. No less than three beaches are to be found within Flensburg's city area. Several hiking trails lead along the shore - alternating between forest and water. And the fjord offers good conditions for water sports. Historically, the protected harbour ensured prospering trades and vivid life style in Flensburg. Until the end of the 1960s, the fjord shore was also characterised by brick manufacturers. There are said to have been more than 70 brickworks in the area. The 15-kilometre-long inner fjord stretches from the tip of the Flensburg harbour to the needle of Holnis. At this point, the 28 kilometre-long outer fjord begins, as it passes into the Baltic Sea that opens up behind the Geltinger Birk.
The "Red Castle by the Sea", "Flensburg's Hogwarts" - the Mürwik Naval School evokes many associations. The view of the building from the eastern shore, with its over 200 metre-long waterfront and around 60 metre-high tower, is particularly impressive. The school is the largest secular brick building in Europe and presents itself as one of the most modern training facilities of the Bundeswehr. Officers of the German Navy have been trained here since 1910. On the Open Monument Day, the German Bundeswehr regularly grants visitors a glimpse behind the walls. In addition to classrooms and accommodation, the school also houses a planetarium, library and dining hall. The naval training sailship Gorch Fock also docks in the harbour of the naval school from time to time.
Proximity to the old town, located at the water - the Hafen Ost area is considered one of the city's "jewels in the crown". Currently, however, in addition to the commercial harbour, the area is characterised by a number of derelict sites and empty harbour warehouses. The city wants this to change significantly in the coming years. An urban quarter is to be created on the area of just over 50 hectares. The area has great potential for living and working, maritime leisure use, and as tourist spot. Aligned with the goals of sustainability, the statutes for the formal designation of the redevelopment area came into force at the beginning of 2020. There have already been several discussions about the plans. Among other things, there is the issue of how to continue the commercial harbour business.
1.5 million litres of drinking water are stored in the "flower vase" that rises turquoise-green from the Volkspark (peoples' park). Because of its unusual shape, Flensburg's water tower is also a landmark of the city. It was put into operation in 1961 - as an addition to the old water tower on the other side of the fjord. Together, they ensure that the water pressure in the pipeline network remains constant. In addition, the water tower at Volkspark is one of the best lookouts in the city. From its publicly accessible platform at a height of around 26 metres, the view stretches far over the Danish coast and the hilly landscape of Angeln. A miniature version of the green giant decorates the watercourse of the neighbouring "Living at the Water Tower" housing estate.
Sometimes a raging little river, sometimes a trickle: the Lautrupsbach changes depending on the weather. The watercourse was named in 1898 after Christan Lautrup, operator of a water mill in the St. Jürgen district. "His" stream meanders from the district Tarup to the Flensburg Fjord. An accompanying cycle and hiking path leads through wooded areas and open green spaces. In spring, wild garlic gatherers meet on the slopes of the valley. There is even a small beach that encourages splashing around in summer. However, the valley only became a local recreation area after its renaturation in the 1990s. Before that, it was part of the route of the Flensburg District Railway and the Kiel Railway until 1953.
The tower of St. Jürgen's Church dominates the skyline of the east bank. The church, built in 1904-1907, was named after the St. Jürgen Hospital, a hospital for lepers and plague sufferers that had stood on the same site since the Middle Ages. The brick church is one of the city's cultural monuments. As in many churches on the coast, two ship models hang from the ceiling. Actually, besides that, the late Gothic vaulted ceiling is particularly eye-catching. However, all of this was in danger when the church had to close in 2012: sponge in the walls and a dilapidated statics. Only after three years and thanks to committed donors could the congregation celebrate the reopening of their church in 2015. The vault was also extensively renovated.