Jasmund National Park

Jasmund National Park

 

 

Location: Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Map

Area: 30 km²

 

Description of Jasmund National Park

Jasmund National Park is located in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern region of Germany. Jasmund National Park covers an area of 30 km² along a Baltic Sea coast. Despite the fact that it is the smallest park in the country it was identified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its most prominent feature are magnificent white chalk cliffs on the Jasmund Peninsula. The tallest cliff is known locally as Königsstuhl or King's Chair in German. It reaches a height of 161 meters. Jasmund National Park is covered by forest and swamps. Some of the trees date to the 13th century. Among fauna one of the most prominent residents here is a rare sea eagle that nests here.

 

History
The chalk cliffs were designated as a protected area as early as 1926 in order to prevent the chalk from mining in the future. In the last days of the GDR, the stretch of coast was declared a national park on September 12, 1990 and continued after reunification.

Landscape
Flora and fauna
Parts of the national park are classified as so important by UNESCO that in June 2011 they were assigned to the world natural heritage "Primeval beech forests in the Carpathian Mountains and ancient beech forests in Germany". The legacy includes 14 other areas in Germany, Slovakia and Ukraine. But the park also has a lot to offer outside of the World Heritage area.

 

Flora
The special geological and climatic conditions of the region allow the occurrence of different and rare plant and animal species. The Stubnitz forest area is of enormous importance because the many water-rich hollows and depressions favor the biodiversity in the national park. These relics from the Ice Age paint an unmistakable picture of Jasmund. The kettle bogs and depressions benefit the growth of black alder. Wild apples and pears, yew trees and service berries bloom in dry places.

Special plant species:
Wild pear: The wild pear enjoys a high reputation in the healing arts. The pear juice is said to have a detoxifying effect. In addition, cooking oil can be obtained from the kernels and kidney tea from the flowers.
Yew: The evergreen trees are mainly found in the temperate climatic zone of the northern hemisphere and they must be approached with extreme caution, as many yew species are highly poisonous.
Black Alder: The alder, which belongs to the genus of the birch family, is a medium-sized deciduous tree and occurs throughout Europe, except in northern Scandinavia and Iceland. The black alder has a healing effect on angina and skin diseases.
Service tree: The deciduous tree species of service tree, which belongs to the rose family, is also known as ice rowan, atlas tree and wild sparrow hawk tree. Their fruits can be cooked or consumed overripe.
Yellow lady's slipper: This type of orchid is under the strictest nature protection in all countries. It is the only type of lady's slipper found in nature in Germany, which is why it is particularly in need of protection.
Chickweed: Also known as beach purslane, the carnation plant is extremely resilient as a beach plant. It can be recognized by its yellowish-green color. The seeds found in the ovary are high in vitamins A and C and can be cooked or cooked raw.

Fauna
The Jasmund National Park has an extremely diverse fauna. Sea eagles, house martins, kingfishers and peregrine falcons can be admired in particularly large numbers. What is breathtakingly beautiful to observe in the air continues in the wetlands. In addition to newts and common toads, various types of lizards are also found there. In addition to the approx. 1,000 species of beetles, the Jasmund National Park can point to the cream-colored moth, which can only be found on Rügen in Germany. In addition, the alpine strudel worm lives in the national park, whose real home is the mountains.

Special animals in the national park:
Peregrine falcon: The peregrine falcon is one of the largest birds of prey in the falcon family. A very common bird, as it is native to almost everywhere in the world. Despite the frequency of its occurrence, the sight of such a large bird of prey is a peculiarity. Like the sea eagle, the peregrine falcon was subject to intense persecution in the 19th century. However, this did not result in extermination. Worldwide the population is now estimated at around 100,000 animals.
Fire-bellied toad: The fire-bellied toad, also known as the fire toad, comes from the Bombinatoridae family. The main source of food is algae and bacteria. The fire-bellied toad population is so small in Germany that it is considered to be endangered.
Fallow deer: The fallow deer is a medium-sized deer and is found in large parts of Europe, Asia and North Africa. The herd size is up to 80 animals. Fallow deer prefer open forests, where they have the best access to leaves and grass.
Forest lizard: The forest lizard has a maximum length of 18 cm and is brown, brown-gray in color. Due to its very high population, it is one of the non-endangered reptile species.
Kingfisher: This type of kingfisher is the only one to be found in Central Europe. The distinguishing feature is the orange belly, the blue head, beak and wings. A special distinguishing feature is the approx. 4 cm long beak, which is noticeable because the maximum body length is only 18 cm.
House martin: With a population size of around 20 to 48 million, the house martin is anything but an endangered species. The house martin occurs in various regions of Europe and Asia.

Smooth snake: The gray, gray-brown to brownish-red smooth snake, with its length of 60 to 75 cm, is a small and inconspicuous species of snake. Due to its small population, the smooth snake is under nature protection in many countries.
White-tailed eagle: With a wingspan of 193 to 244 cm and a body length of 74 to 92 cm, the white-tailed eagle, from the family of the Central European hawk species, is an extremely large bird of prey. The main sources of food are water birds and fish. Although the sea eagle was exterminated in Central Europe at the beginning of the 20th century, it was later able to return to its native region and has not been endangered since 2005.
Moth: The cream-colored moth is one of the large butterflies. The distinguishing feature is the dark color, which offers an almost perfect camouflage during the day.

 

getting there
By train
By train to Sassnitz. At Sassnitz train station there is a connection to bus line 23, which goes directly to the Königsstuhl.

In the street
The journey to the Königsstuhl and the National Park Center is only possible on foot, by bike and by bus. With the car you have to park in a paid parking lot in Hagen, Nipmerow or Ranzow and then walk.

Standard for the journey to the Königsstuhl is the journey to the chargeable large car park in Hagen. From here you can travel the 3 km to the Königsstuhl with the shuttle bus. Alternatively, there is a nice hike through the beautiful beech forest to the Königstuhl des Jasmund. Here you also pass the enchanted Herthasee on the way.

At the parking lot you will also find an extensive tourist infrastructure, such as public toilets, snack bars and restaurants as well as sales stands for souvenirs.

By bicycle
The road L 303 Sassnitz - Hagen im is very busy as the entrance to the Königsstuhl (Hagen large car park). Avoid the route that is dangerous for cyclists as far as possible.

There has been a newly developed, traffic-free alternative route east of the highway in the national park since spring 2019. Around three million euros were invested in the 12 km long extension section with fixed ceilings. Due to its location in the national park, the 2 m wide route, according to Opensstreetmap, is made of a water-permeable special concrete. Warning: It is essential to concentrate on oncoming traffic here! 2 m width is actually too narrow for safe oncoming traffic - especially since the route has curves and inclines according to the map (the "technical regulation" ERA incidentally stipulates a minimum width of 2.5 m for independently guided two-way cycle paths). From this minimum, oncoming traffic is relaxed and safe.

Cycling is not permitted on the high bank path on the chalk coast. This also applies to most of the other trails in the park.

Fees
The area is freely accessible except for the Königsstuhl cliff. The viewing platform on the famous "Königsstuhl" chalk cliff costs 9.50 euros (as of 10/2020) admission (coupled with a visit to the National Park Center). If you are not at all interested in the Königsstuhl National Park Center, you can alternatively visit the Victoria view opposite. This is freely accessible and provides an even more spectacular view down than that from the Königsstuhl.

Around the park
In general, only marked and non-blocked paths may be used in the park. The cliff path is closed to bicycles. This also applies to some other hiking trails. The cliff edge path can be viewed well on OpenStreetMap. With the export function at openstreetmap.org you can download the right piece of map to print out in large on DIN A4.

Plants may of course not be picked either. Stones (chalk) are also not allowed in the park. You can get chalk as a souvenir from the souvenir shop in the National Park Center.

 

Attractions
Large stump chamber with the Königsstuhl National Park Center
The spacious information center is located directly on the famous cliff. Access to the viewing platform on the rock is included in the admission fee. If you are not at all interested in the information center, you can alternatively visit the Victoria view opposite. This is freely accessible and provides an even more spectacular view down than that from the Königsstuhl. It is worth visiting the center, however, because the extensive exhibition is presented in a very appealing way. If you want to explore the entire interactive exhibition down to the last detail, you should plan 1½ to 2½ hours for this, including the multivision cinema.

The Jasmund National Park is presented in picture and sound in a small cinema with 3 projections. The appealing demonstrations take place every quarter of an hour. After this "starter", a visit to the actual 2000 m² exhibition is on the program. The main attraction is through a gate that opens every 8 minutes for 20 people. In the darkened anteroom, a friendly staff asks for a tour. Audio guides with headphones are available in three different guide versions. You have to decide on a variant. The system is activated automatically at the information points in the museum and you receive the appropriate information on the respective exhibition topic.

The three guided tours are each accompanied by suitable music:
"Beauty": The 'romantic' variant is accompanied by a lot of soulful and atmospheric music that accompanies you on the romantic walk through the national park. Together with the light projections of the exhibition, one is quickly drawn under the spell of the national park. The factual information is not neglected in the romantic tour.
"Curiosity": In this 'scientific' tour, the factual explanations are somewhat more extensive. For example, the Latin names of the fauna and flora are mentioned in the lectures.
"Adventure": adventurous leadership version as an explorer.
Children's tour: There is also a fourth, separate tour variant for children with an audio guide.

After the instruction in the audio guide and a device test, it goes on a journey through time. The hourglass is set in a "time machine" and off you go into the past of the island of Rügen. From a technical point of view, it is a spacious elevator that brings the group to the beginning of the exhibition. Here begins the journey through time through the themed rooms of the exhibition. First, the geological development of the island of Rügen is dealt with. Further topics are, for example, the prehistoric times and the fauna and flora of the national park. Many films and animations take you deep into the national park and experience the nature of Jasmund from completely new perspectives. Of course, the adventure exhibition also has many interactive attractions and stations to take part in.

Opening times: Easter to October 31: daily 9 am-7pm; November 1st to Easter: daily 10 am-5pm; last entry to the multivision cinema: 20 minutes before closing; Last admission to the adventure exhibition: 1 hour before closing. Due to the sometimes large number of visitors, there may be waiting times in the high season (as of 05-2019).

Entry in 2019: Adults: € 9.50; Children 6-14 years: € 4.50; Children up to 5 years: free, family ticket (2 adults + children up to 14 years: 20 €.
The environmentally friendly journey is rewarded: Anyone who can present a DB long-distance ticket, an amber ticket, a Schleswig-Holstein, Baltic Sea, or Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania ticket at the cash desk receives reduced admission. The same applies to Sassnitz spa card holders. In summer 2010 the discount for adults on the admission price was one euro. Otherwise there are no further discounts. For the climate-friendly, island-wide bus journey with the RPNV buses, there is an inexpensive combination ticket that is valid both as an entry ticket and island-wide day ticket on the day of the visit: single ticket € 15, family ticket (2 adults with children up to 14 years): € 30 (As of 2010).
Outdoor area: Here you will find a playground and of course the way to the viewing platform on the Königsstuhl. From the far forward rocky cliff you have an attractive view of the chalk coast of Jasmund and across to the Victoria view.
Bistro: The menu here includes dishes from organic farming.

 

Small stump chamber with Victoria view
The freely accessible vantage point can be found opposite the Königsstuhl at the Kleiner Stubbenkammer. Here, at a height of around 110 m, a viewing platform offers a very spectacular view of the Baltic Sea. You feel much closer to the rock here than on the wide Königsstuhl. The narrow bridge is only for those with a head for heights. The Victoria view is freely accessible and is located about 500 m west of the Königsstuhl.

The view is named after the Crown Princess Victoria. Victoria, daughter-in-law of the Prussian King Wilhelm I, was there with Wilhelm I in 1865.

Between the two rocky cliffs is the previously much walked stairway to the beach. Unfortunately, this is closed as of May 2019 (reopening unclear). From below you have a completely different view of the chalk cliffs. Here the rocks appear even more powerful.

Herthasee
The so-called Herthasee Herthasee in the encyclopedia Wikipedia Herthasee in the media directory Wikimedia Commons (Borg or Black Lake) is located between the Hagen large car park and the Königsstuhl National Park Center. If you simply walk the 3 km through the beech forest from the parking lot, you will pass the enchanted lake in the middle of the forest. The water measures 170 x 140 in an oval and is 11 m deep. By the way, there is a sacrificial stone very close to the lake.

Gummanz Chalk Museum
The museum is not located directly in the national park, but a visit is definitely worthwhile for those interested, as it provides information on the subject of chalk (geology, fossils and use of chalk).

activities
Hiking along the cliffs
From Sassnitz you can take a nice hike on the high bank path along the steep coast to the Königsstuhl. The route length from Sassnitz train station is about 9-10 km with a walking time of about 3 to 4 hours depending on the breaks. You can return to Sassnitz to the train station from the Königsstuhl by bus line 23. The entry point to the path along the steep coast can be found in Sassnitz at the end of "Weddingstrasse". On the way you will also pass the Wissower Klinken. Most of the famous cliffs fell into the Baltic Sea in 2005. Incidentally, the cliffs were not the template for Caspar David Friedrich's famous painting "Chalk Cliffs on Rügen", which he painted in 1818. The Wissower clinics, as they existed until 2005, did not exist in 1818. They came about later through erosion.

On the further way you still pass some beautiful viewpoints, such as at the Ernst-Moritz-Arndt view. Here is a "stool bench" without a backrest. Another nice spot is the following Auguste Viktoria view north of the Kieler Bach (also with a bench). Particularly worth seeing is the Victoria view, which is about half a kilometer in front of the Königsstuhl and allows a spectacular deep view towards the Baltic Sea. The small viewing platform at is only something for those who are largely free from giddiness (possibly a short waiting time at the bridge, as it only holds a few people).

Of course, the cliff path is already heavily used, but compared to the tourist crowds directly at the Königsstuhl, it is still relatively quiet here. Of course you are rarely alone in the high season. Those looking for solitude should avoid the high season and take the hike e.g. B. attack in autumn. Then the beech forest is also beautifully colorful.

Route information
Map: An overview map of the national park can be viewed here on the park's website.
Footwear - "flip flops" (also called "flip-flops") are definitely the wrong shoes for the bumpy route. This also applies to other wobbly shoes with high heels. Comfortable, waterproof shoes with a good grip, such as trekking loafers and other waterproof sports shoes with a non-slip profile sole, are best. Light, ankle-high mountain hiking boots are also ideal, especially in colder weather. Caution: During or after prolonged rain, the path is a bit muddy in places. If the last rain was a few days ago and the hiking day is very likely to be dry, you can also use trekking sandals with a firm grip and a good support on the soles.

 

Walking time & fitness: From Sassnitz train station you walk for about 3 to 4 hours depending on the breaks for eating, viewing and taking photos. If you are on the road very hard without long breaks, you can safely cover the 10 km long route in a good two hours. However, there is little time to enjoy the unique landscape. If you make the detour to the harbor, you should add another 30 minutes to walk. Attention: Even if the route is "only" 10 km long, you still need a bit of stamina, as the path is very hilly.
Safety, a head for heights and surefootedness: those who do not have a head for heights simply stay away from the cliffs. This largely solves the problem for people who are not free from giddiness. In 08-2010, however, the path was broken off at one point. However, this point could easily be avoided by means of new trails in the forest. Cliff breaks happen again and again, of course. In the event of a storm you have to be careful in the forest and on the steep coast. This is especially true for the beach hike. Therefore, it is essential to pay attention to the current warning notices from the national park administration beforehand.
Altitude meters - Although the hike is usually only 50 to 100 m above sea level, there are still a few meters in altitude, as the route is quite hilly. Some creek cuttings are conquered with the help of wooden stairs. Rough estimate: 150-200 m (without descent to the beach). Anyone who has hiked the route with GPS is welcome to store detailed data on the altitude difference here.
Wheelchair and pram suitability: not given as the path contains numerous stairs and bumpy passages.
Suitability for bicycles: The Hochuferweg is closed to cycling. Carrying a bicycle (pushing or carrying) is also not permitted according to the signs at the entrance to the path. This regulation also makes sense, as it would be too tight on the sometimes quite narrow, but longer staircases in the oncoming traffic with pedestrians. However, two pedestrians always pass each other comfortably.

Additional info
Excursions by ship along the chalk cliffs to the Königsstuhl - the ships depart from Sassnitz, Binz, Göhren and Sellin (info).
to buy
There is a souvenir shop in the national park center. You can also get chalk here as a souvenir. However, this does not come from the national park, but from the chalk works near Sassnitz. It is not permitted to collect chalk in the national park.