Day 11: “… ich hab’ die Haare schön” …hair, hair, my beautiful hair…

Marienkirche in Bergen - Insel Rügen                                    Marienkirche in Bergen auf Rügen - Romanische Wandmalereien

…another one of the wonderful churches on the island, St. Mary’s in Bergen, a town not too far from where we were staying. We made a short stop over here before we went to hike in the Lancken-Granitz. When we returned to our car, a neat wet little piece of paper stuck on the windscreen welcomed us to the town, and announced that we must pay a parking fine! Hrmph! Not nice, but thankfully it was only 5 euros. Oh well, at least it did not spoil our impressions of this church though. We were amazed at the Romanesque mural art on the walls and ceilings, depicting quite a few biblical motives. What makes it so interesting in these old churches, is the feeling of being transported back in time, and the wonder of how life must have been without modern day technology. A Gothic slide show!

Marienkirche in Bergen auf Rügen - Romanische WandmalereienHere the very high arched ceilings with fantastic murals. Don’t be shy, lie on your back, only if you are sure you can get up again, and admire the view! The floors are made of stone and are very cold, mmmm…so maybe not…

Neolithisches Megalithgrab bei Lancken-Granitz - Insel RügenAfter the parking fine shock, we drove over to our hiking starting point at Lancken-Granitz. There are no visible road signs on the main road leading to this little village, so can be difficult to find, but thanks to Capitano Columbus, the driver, we did not get lost. Not far from this village are the famous megalith tombs from the Neolithic era (new stone age). There are seven of these tombs in total.

"Ziegensteine" - Neolithisches Megalithgrab bei Lancken-Granitz - Insel RügenFurther along is the Ziegensteine tomb, or Sieges[steine] (Victory stones). Ziegen actually means goats, but I don’t think that these had anything to do with goats. Ehm…This tomb is also one of the largest megalithic tombs on the island, and erected by farmers and livestock breeders around 3500-1800BC. It is also situated in a very quiet and peaceful part of the forest.

Stresow Bay with the island of Vilm - Island of RügenThe Stresow Bay with the very remote island of Vilm in the background. It is a protected nature reserve, and strictly closed to constant human presence. Visits to the island are restricted to a maximum of thirty persons per day, so booking in advance is a must.

Weg nach Groß Stresow an der Stresower Bucht - Insel RügenThe entrance to the little village of Gross Stresow (big Stresow) at the bay, with a big welcome painted on the rock. Cute.

Thatched roof house in Groß Stresow - Island of RügenOne of the many lovely thatched roof houses in the village.

Wegweiser in Groß Stresow - Insel Rügen…what a novel idea for a red little buoy. As you see, from this point, Cape Town is ‘only’ 9781 kilometres away!

Haus in Groß Stresow - Insel RügenThis is a holiday house, with such a pretty garden, and the bay is only a few metres away.

Hafen von Groß Stresow - Insel RügenWe took a little break, and, sitting on an upside-down ‘hope-it-will-not-break’ boat, enjoyed the view while munching on our choc-chip cookies. The sun is struggling to peep through the clouds, and the wooden little pier looked a bit too rickety, so no walking on that. Amazing photo, not so??

Aaahh, beautiful! There were so many butterflies in this garden, more than anywhere else we’ve seen on the island. In fact, up to now we’d only seen one or three caterpillars, eeek, and maybe one or three butterflies. There were also quite a lot of hornets buzzing amongst them, all enjoying the rotting fruits of a pear tree. The amazing photographer braved the buzz-buzzing of those yellow-striped kamikazes, and managed to take this wonderful snapshot of Madame B., casting her shadow over the pole. It was not easy to get such an amazing snapshot! Awesome!

Briefkasten und Apfelbaum in Groß Stresow - Insel RügenDelicious red apples for the postman?? A mouth-watering apple tree with an overfull post box, still in Gross Stresow.

Groß Stresow an der Stresower Bucht - Insel RügenA view of the village of Gross Stresow in the background. We walked all the way from there, along this very narrow shoreline of the bay (this was probably the widest part!). We sank in the way too soft sand, we paddled in the water, we crawled and fought our way through the reeds, we climbed over rocks and stones. Another day in paradise? You bet!

Pony bei Neureddevitz - Insel Rügen            Pony bei Neureddevitz - Insel Rügen

Hair. Hair. My beautiful hair! …a home for fleas, yeah…a hive for bees, oh yeah…a nest for birds, well hmmm…there ain’t no words for the beauty, the splendor, the wonder of my…Hair. Hair. Hair…Is this baby cute or not??

                                    Pony bei Neureddevitz - Insel Rügen

…and I can talk too, but at the moment I’m a little hoarse…giggle…giggle…

Pony und Pferd bei Neureddevitz - Insel Rügen                                    Pony und Pferd bei Neureddevitz - Insel Rügen

…snuffle up my little one! What a lovely privilege to witness this tenderness between the two. There were other horses in the paddock, but only these two were inquisitive enough to stay with us. The others turned their backs on us when they realised that we had nothing yummy-yum for them to nibble on.


Excuse me Sir, but do you have a mint? Ace Venturarah canoodling with Brown Beauty. …baby…oh oh baby, my sweet baby…cootchie cootchie coo…

Hafen von Neureddevitz - Insel RügenAfter the fun with the loving horses, we reached the ‘only-has-one-street’ fishing village of Neu Reddevitz. It is surrounded on three sides by water, and is in the biosphere reserve of south eastern Rügen. It has a lovely little stony beach, all 5 metres of it. At the distance (top left of photo) is Gross Stresow, where we walked from. So far, far away. Impressive.

Hauptstraße in Neureddevitz - Insel RügenThe main and only street in the village. There are a lot of lovely little thatched roof houses, which are mainly used as holiday homes.

Erneuerung eines Reetdachs in Neureddevitz - Insel Rügen…here one of the houses getting a face-lift! Apparently it costs a lot of money to re-roof these houses, and it has to be repeated every ten to twenty years or so. Also not good if there’s a fire!

Blick vom Teschenberg auf die Stresower Bucht - Insel RügenOn our way back to Lancken-Granitz, over the Teschenberg, with the Stresow Bay in the background. Is this not a fantastic landscape photo? Spectacular!

Blick auf Lancken-Granitz - Insel RügenA view of the village of Lancken-Granitz. There’s a solid wooden bench over here where one can sit and admire the all-round view of the fields and the village in front, and listen to the chirping birds in the little forest at the back. We were almost at our destination. A wonderful end to another adventurous day. Hee-haw!

Day 4: Hidden in Hiddensee

The weather forecast was mild, but with some showers. So we packed our brolleys, and off we went…uhm…sailed to the island of Hiddensee. The only way to get there is by boat, big or small, but boat…The phobic one was biting her nails, her knuckles, her everything else she could find…No turning back though, so we opted to take a water taxi, above, as this would take ONLY 15 minutes to cross over. Okay, so the phobic one was a little green by the time we docked at Kloster, but still breathing!!! Phew! That noisy thing pitched, heaved and yawed in and out of the waves…SEA-SAW!! The non-phobic one calls it ‘skimming’…Was that a grin on his face????

This lovely hotel called Hithim, built around 1907, is situated directly on the harbour.

What a lovely resting place, including a very big ashtray to the right. Puffing hikers??? Eh?? This is between Kloster and the next village called Grieben.

Horses grazing in the meadow, with the sea in the background…

It’s an island. Surrounded by lots and lots of water. It’s a lonely life, eh? So of course, a nice cool beer while enjoying the few sunrays of the day is also entertainment…heh-heh…

These typical thatched roof houses were in the village of Grieben. Hey, some-one is peeping over there!

Oh my word! A spy! We found this so funny…hidden in Hiddensee…LOL!

Birds. Lots and lots of birds. It was amazing to see how many there were, and chirpy too!

…this is the lighthouse at Dornbusch. We will be going closer, but first we have to explore the “Altbessin”…This is a peninsula formed by sediment and exists since around the year 1500. This is a protected nature reserve and national park. Here we were caught in the rain. There is nowhere to hide! It is flat and there are only bushes. Luckily for us we were near the very tip of the peninsula, and thankfully there was a little hut on stilts there. We were not the only ones seeking shelter! There must´ve been 10 of us squeezed into that small space…Fun. Fun. Fun.

We are at the “Altbessin”, with a view of Kloster in the background. “Altbessin” is roughly translated as Old Basin. There´s also a ´newer´ basin which is off-limits to the public, as this is a very sensitive breeding area for sea and migrant birds.

We once again opted for a ‘walk on the beach’ at Enddorn…No rain and lots of sunshine, which was very welcome as it was quite brrrrrr…In the background are ‘tepee’ twigs…Good for a big bonfire night…

…still at the Enddorn beach, with a fantastic ‘still life’ and soft waves…

The cliffs at the northern coast of Dornbusch…(we will be going up there too) The sand here seems softer, and the stones smaller, not as rocky as other coastlines we’ve visited.

Stones, glorious stones, in all shapes, sizes and colours. We noticed many people searching and digging all over, so asked why. Apparently, if you’re lucky, and if you’ve chosen the right spot, you can find some very interesting fossils and “Bernstein” (Amber), which is mostly used for jewellery. Obviously, we found nothing! Why? Because one is always holding a big camera, and the other one? Well, the other one has absolutely no idea…

Hiddensee is the only area where it is allowed to pick and eat the Sanddorn. To do so elsewhere on Rügen can be punished with a hefty fine. We did not pick or eat anything though. Remember our YECH of yesterday?? Yech!

A beautiful dragonfly! It posed patiently until all fifty photos were taken…Only joking, there were only two or three…fingers crossed…

Spindel Tree berries. This is VERY poisonous to humans. Do. Not. Touch. Shiver…

Our ascent along the northern coast of Dornbusch…pant…pant…pant…but the view is breathtaking…pant…pant…pant…(We walked from down the-e-e-re)

…on our…pant…pant…way to the top…calves are screaming, but there again…the view! .

View from the second highest mountain in Hiddensee called the Swantiberg…view from the second highest mountain in Hiddensee called the Swantiberg. One can see the “Altbessin” from here. It’s the jutting out part just beyond the row of trees, in the middle of the photo. Yes, we walked all the way from down there too..

Sheep on the island of Hiddensee…and to show that we were not alone…Sheep! Mää-ää-ääää…

See how high up we are! The phobic did NOT look down, and the non-phobic caused some-one to get multiple heart attacks by going so close to the edge…Boom. Baboom.

I believe I can fly…tra-la-laaaaa…It was VERY windy, and as you can see, he is getting ready for take-off! Tango Bravo 7-4-7 to Tower…

Finally! The lighthouse on the Bakenberg! More steps, more pants, more wind, but excillerating…On a clear day one can see Denmark from here! No kidding!

This is not bragging, but just look at this photo. The tip of the lighthouse seems to be opening up the cloudy sky…Great!

On the way down from the Bakenberg, we made a little pause over here to eat something. You can see the harbour of Kloster, and probably the whole island of Hiddensee. Munching nuts with a view like this was never so appetising!

…looking up towards the Dornbusch from the other end of Kloster…a lovely lonely tree, and a heart-shaped cloud over it…All together now. AAAHHHH!

Nosey horse on the island of HiddenseeSmile baby! Yes, we were tired too…but happy that we enjoyed another wonderful hiking trip. Now back to that jumping boat…