Maritime Centre Vellamo is a unique building in Finland with a wave-like roof. It houses the Maritime Museum of Finland, Museum of Kymenlaakso and Information Centre Vellamo.
The Maritime Museum of Finland is a national maritime museum operating under the National Board of Antiquities and the Ministry of Education, destined to record the history of seafaring in Finland and to convey related information. The Maritime Museum collects and preserves items, photographs, archival material and literature pertaining to seafaring and boating.
In its main exhibition “North Star, Southern Cross”, the Maritime Museum of Finland tells about the history of seafaring in Finland, focusing on issues such as life of seafarers, development of ships, maritime trade, and travelling by sea. The main exhibition also covers the speciality of Northern seafaring, winter shipping and ice.
The Museum of Kymeenlaakso records, studies, preserves and presents the cultural legacy of Kotka and the entire region of Kymenlaakso. The foremost themes of the main exhibition Flow are efficiency as well as the relationship between an individual and the community. These themes are approached from a number of angles, and the topics covered include perception of time, significance of money, boundaries and crossing them, beauty, immortality, work and having fun.
There’s also an icebreaker Tarmo located outside the Vellamo. Built in 1907, it’s one of the oldest still surviving icebreakers in the world.
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.