Top Historic Sights in Wismar, Germany

Explore the historic highlights of Wismar

Historic Centre of Wismar

Wismar is a unique representative of the Hanseatic League city type, with its Brick Gothic constructions and many patrician gable houses. It has been included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 2002, together with the historical core of Stralsund. Wismar has preserved its medieval harbour basin, whereas the island location of Stralsund has remained unchanged since the 13th century. To this day the unmistakable ...
Founded: 1229 | Location: Wismar, Germany

St. Mary's Church

The 80 m high tower church of St Mary (Marienkirche) is the only remainder of the original Brick Gothic edifice, built in the first half of the 13th century. It suffered heavy damage in World War II, and was deliberately destroyed in 1960 under the East German Communist government. St. Mary"s Church stands in the immediate vicinity of the market square and town hall, and was appropriately enough Wismar"s main parish chur ...
Founded: 1339 | Location: Wismar, Germany

St. Nicholas' Church

St. Nicholas' Church stands besides one of Germany's oldest manmade waterways, the Frischen Grube, and was dedicated as the church for sailors and fishermen. The 37m high nave is almost the height of the Marienkirche in Lübeck. The protruding northern and southern vestibules that resemble the arms of a transept are also a particular feature of the church. The lavishly adorned southern gable takes a special place in art o ...
Founded: 1381-1460 | Location: Wismar, Germany

St. George's Church

St. George's Church belongs to the most significant historical monuments of North German brick Gothic architecture. It was constructed in a long period spanning the Late Middle Ages and the Reformation, undergoing several design changes before its final completion in 1594. The colossal nave and transept is testament to the last great parish church constructed in the Middle Ages in Northern Germany. After extensive damage ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Wismar, Germany

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Varberg Fortress

Varberg Fortress was built in 1287-1300 by count Jacob Nielsen as protection against his Danish king, who had declared him an outlaw after the murder of King Eric V of Denmark. Jacob had close connections with king Eric II of Norway and as a result got substantial Norwegian assistance with the construction. The fortress, as well as half the county, became Norwegian in 1305.

King Eric's grand daughter, Ingeborg Håkansdotter, inherited the area from her father, King Haakon V of Norway. She and her husband, Eric, Duke of Södermanland, established a semi-independent state out of their Norwegian, Swedish and Danish counties until the death of Erik. They spent considerable time at the fortress. Their son, King Magnus IV of Sweden (Magnus VII of Norway), spent much time at the fortress as well.

The fortress was augmented during the late 16th and early 17th century on order by King Christian IV of Denmark. However, after the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 the fortress became Swedish. It was used as a military installation until 1830 and as a prison from the end of the 17th Century until 1931.

It is currently used as a museum and bed and breakfast as well as private accommodation. The moat of the fortress is said to be inhabited by a small lake monster. In August 2006, a couple of witnesses claimed to have seen the monster emerge from the dark water and devour a duck. The creature is described as brown, hairless and with a 40 cm long tail.