Monday, 11 February 2013

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARD FROM GERMANY

The Darßer Ort Lighthouse is located at the northwestern tip of the peninsula Fischland-Darß-Zingst on the southern shore of the Baltic Sea in the German state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania (54° 28′ 22″ N, 12° 30′ 8″ O). Darßer Ort is a sandy promontory with large dunes sheltering an unusual maritime forest. 
The 35 m (115 ft.) round red brick tower was first lit on November 16, 1848 and is the oldest lighthouse still in operation at the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern coast.  Electrified in 1936 and automated in 1978, the lighthouse was closed to the public access in August 1961, when the East German (GDR) closed its inner German border. Only since March 1995, the lighthouse was reopened to the public and visitors could climb the 134-steps cast steel staircase to the gallery deck. In 1991, the German Maritime Museum at Stralsund opened at Darßer Ort an aquarium and nature museum called Natureum. The natural history museum occupies the light station buildings which were extensive restored in 2009.
Germany released on February 3, 2011 a joint issue celebrating 150 years of German - Japan friendship depicting UNESCO World Heritage sites in both countries. Germany issued two stamps and Japan a souvenir sheet with ten stamps. The 0, 75€ German stamp presents the landmark of Regensburg, the Cathedral of St. Peter, the main and the greatest Gothic cathedral in Bavaria. Although the building works started as early as 1260, it was only finished in the 19th century.

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