1. day - travel from Prague to Cuxhaven and then to Heligoland
2. day - exploring Heligoland
3. day - exploring Düne and travel back to Cuxhaven
4. day - travel from Cuxhaven to Denmark, visiting Møgeltønder and Rømø
5. day - Ribe, Sand Sculpture Festival, Bovbjerg Fyr
6. day - Stenbjerg, Vorupør, Klitmøller, Vigsø Batteriet, Bulbjerg, Rubjerg Knude
7. day - Grenen, Den Tilsadede Kirke, Råbjerg Mile, Saeby, Lindholm Høje, Rebild Bakker
8. day - Skandinavisk Dyrepark, Kalø Slostruin, Himmelbjerget
9. day - travel back to Prague
The first aim of our trip was Heligoland. We decided to go there by a ferry from Cuxhaven. We chose new catamaran of Heligoline company. It arrives every day in 11:30 a.m. from Cuxhaven, so we had to go in 2:00 a.m. from Prague. The catamaran is very fast, so it took 1 and a quarter hours until we arrived on this small German archipelago in North Sea. There are two islands, main island called Heligoland and smaller one called Düne.
We decided to sleep in camping site on Düne. If you want to go to this island, you have to use small ship from Heligoland. The camping site is really amazing. We built our tent among sand dunes and small airplanes are flying above our heads, because there is small airport on Düne.
Second day we spent on Heligoland. There are beautiful colourful buildings and you can observe there a colony of Northern Gannets and Guillemots from close distance.
Last day on Heligoland archipelago we spent on Düne. You can observe there two type of seals, Harbor Seal and Gray Seal, but you have to keep distance between you and seals at least 30 metres. During the day, they are resting on a sand beach. In the evening most of them are swimming in the North Sea. They are really curious. It was a shame that it was not possible to swim with them, because water had only 13 degrees Celsius.
In 16:30 p.m. we left Heligoland and went back to Cuxhaven.
It was big surprise for us when we saw a lot of European Rabbits on Düne, especially during evening walks.
Piece of advice.
In Germany, there is still problem with accepting VISA. Big supermarkets and oil stations are accepting it, but most of small shops and restaurants still not. Especially on Heligoland it's not possible to pay by Visa in any shops and restaurants, so you have to pay by cash. So be careful and have enough cash.
Next day we were driving from Cuxhaven to Denmark. First place we visited in Denmark was picturesque small town Møgeltønder. This town is mainly known for the royal residence of Schackenborg Castle which was the home of the Danish Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik´s younger son Prince Joachim until 2014. But when we was there, the residence was closed for public. We visited Møgeltønder Church which is one of the biggest village churches in the southern Jutland. Also Prince Joachim and his second wife was married in this church. We also went through the main street Slotsgaden covered with paving-stones and flanked with lime trees. We felt like in a fairytale because of lovely buildings with thatched roofs. It is a small town but it definitely pays to visit it.
Next place we visited was Højer Mølle, the tallest windmill in Northern Europe. Then we went to Trøjborg Castle Ruins. Castle was first built as a Middle Ages Castle in the 14th Century. Later, in 1580, it was rebuilt to the Renaissance Castle. The Castle was demolished in 1854.
In the end of the day we visited island Rømø in the Wadden Sea. Rømø is connected to mainland by a road running across a causeway. There is the largest sand beach in Northern Europe and it is possible to drive on it. We visited there Kommandørgården Museum that is situated in the old house of a whaling captain. The house is thatched and built of dark-fired, reddish-purple bricks. South-east of the house you'll find Toftum Old School from 1784. It is the oldest an the smallest school in Denmark.
Next day we decided to visit the oldest town in Denmark, Ribe. It was established in the early 8th century. If you want to go only to one town in Denmark, Ribe is the best choice. It is lovely small town with a lot of beautiful historic buildings. We visited the town's landmark, Ribe Cathedral. You can go up to the tower and enjoy beautiful views. We also visited Saint Catharinæ Church, Old Town Hall and Taarnborg, that was home to the last Catholic priest in Ribe and to Bishop Brorson. We also saw Johanne Dan, that is old sailing ship designed with a flat bottom, which allowed it to navigate through the shallow waters of the Ribe. Then we visited Ribe VikingCenter, where you can discover everyday life as it was a 1000 years ago during the Viking Age.
After visiting Ribe, we drove along North Sea coast through Hvide Sande and visited Sand Sculpture Festival in Ringkøbing. The festival is there from May to October a it is definitely worthwhile to visit this place. We were fascinated by all sculptures and we did'nt understand how anyone could create them. The theme of this year's festival was wizardry and magic.
The last place that we visited that day was Bovbjerg Fyr. This lighthouse was painted red, so that mariners would not confuse it with the white church towers in Ferring and Trans, which also served as lighthouses. It is located on Bovbjerg cliff, about 40 metres above sea level.
Our next stop was Stenbjerg, small fishing village with white fishermen's huts next to the sandy beach. We continued to beaches in Vorupør with fishing boats on the beach and Klitmøller, that is also called "Cold Hawaii". As a consequence of the windy weather we had during our visit, we watched dozens of surfers on both beaches, that were enjoying the weather.
Then we visited the Vigsø Batteriet, part of the fortifications built during the Second World War. Today some of bunkers lie on the beach, while others will soon be swallowed up (some already are) by the North Sea.
After that we visited a limestone cliff Bulbjerg. It is the only bird cliff on the Danish mainland and the only breeding place of the Black-Legged Kittiwake on the Danish mainland.
After this place, we went to Rubjerg Knude, perhaps the most photographed lighthouse in Denmark. For many years buildings were used as a museum and coffee shop, but continually shifting sands caused them to be abandoned in 2002. By 2009, the small buildings were severely damaged by the pressure of the sand and were later removed. It is expected that the tower will fall into the sea by 2023.
Our next stop was the northest point of Jutland, Grenen. The North Sea and the Baltic Sea are meeting there and the collision of the waves is clearly visible. Due to the strong and dangerous currents, swimming there is prohibited. Despite this fact at least we were wading in the sea because it was the first day of our trip when it was really hot.
After this beautiful place we were going to Den Tilsandede Kirke, also known as The Buried Church or The San-Covered Church. It was built in the 14th century. During the last half of the 18th century the church was partially buried by sand from nearby dunes. The congregation had to dig out the entrance each time a service was to be held. The struggle against the sand continued until 1795 when the church was closed. Today only the tower of the ancient church is visible.
We did not have the sand enough so we visited Råbjerg Mile. It is the largest moving dune in Northern Europe. The wind moves it in a north-easterly direction up to 18 metres a year. It is really hard to climb on dunes in the sand, in shoes it's impossible :) . It is amazing place when we felt like in the desert, but the weather is milder there.
Our next stop was small harbour Saeby. Town symbol is the statue Fru Fra Havet, also known as Lady From the Sea. It is situated in the entrance of harbour.
Then we went to Voegaard Slot, that is among Denmark’s most beautiful renaissance castles. It has the wide moat and the meter-thick walls. Then we made short stop at Lindholm Høje, which is major Viking burial site and former settlement.
In the end of the day, we were visited Rebild Bakker and went there for a walk through the hilly heathland. It is calm place with pure nature and we will definitely want to explore it more in our next trip to Denmark.
Last day of our trip we were going to Skandinavisk Dyrepark. As the name indicate it is the zoo with widlife native to Scandinavia. There are one of the largest exhibits for polar bears, brown bears and grey wolves of their kind in the world. We really enjoyed our visit, because animals live there in very good conditions compared with other zoos which we have visited before.
After the zoo we visited Kalø Slostruin. The castle was founded in 1313. Castle ruins are situated on a peninsula in eastern Jutland. We went there throught cows and there is beautiful view from the top of the ruins.
Our last stop was Himmelbjerget, one of the highest natural points in the Danish landscape with a height of 147 m :) . There is amazing view of the Silkeborg lakes.
We went back from Denmark through Germany to Prague.