The Sopot Pier, built as a pleasure pier and as a mooring point for cruise boats, first opened in 1827. The next reconstruction extended the length of 150 metres, then to 315 m. The pier was brought to the contemporary length in 1928, along with the walking passage of the spa. The first non-wooden elements appeared after 1990, when the head was modernised using steel elements.
At 511.5m, the pier is the longest wooden pier in Europe. It stretches into the sea from the middle of Sopot beach which is a popular venue for recreation and health walks (the concentration of iodine at the tip of the pier is twice as high as on land) or public entertainment events, and it also serves as a mooring point for cruise boats and water taxis. It is also an excellent point for observing the World Sailing Championship, the Baltic Windsurfing Cup and the Sopot Triathlon taking place on the bay. Sopot pier consists of 2 parts: the famous wooden walking jetty and the Spa Square on land, where concerts and festivities are organised.References:
The Externsteine (Extern stones) is a distinctive sandstone rock formation located in the Teutoburg Forest, near the town of Horn-Bad Meinberg. The formation is a tor consisting of several tall, narrow columns of rock which rise abruptly from the surrounding wooded hills. Archaeological excavations have yielded some Upper Paleolithic stone tools dating to about 10,700 BC from 9,600 BC.
In a popular tradition going back to an idea proposed to Hermann Hamelmann in 1564, the Externsteine are identified as a sacred site of the pagan Saxons, and the location of the Irminsul (sacral pillar-like object in German paganism) idol reportedly destroyed by Charlemagne; there is however no archaeological evidence that would confirm the site's use during the relevant period.
The stones were used as the site of a hermitage in the Middle Ages, and by at least the high medieval period were the site of a Christian chapel. The Externsteine relief is a medieval depiction of the Descent from the Cross. It remains controversial whether the site was already used for Christian worship in the 8th to early 10th centuries.
The Externsteine gained prominence when Völkisch and nationalistic scholars took an interest in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This interest peaked under the Nazi regime, when the Externsteine became a focus of nazi propaganda. Today, they remain a popular tourist destination and also continue to attract Neo-Pagans and Neo-Nazis.