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On the Polish side of Usedom Island (Polish: Uznam) is ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie (German: Swinemunde), a county and an important port town established in 1740 by Emperor Frederick the Great. ┼Üwinoujscie is also called the Land of 44 Islands because ┼Üwinoujscie County is comprised of 44 islands. It's also one of the most important counties in the Szczecin (Stettin) metropolitan region and the West Pomeranian Voivodeship, and also the most densely populated area on the the island.

The town may have a difficult name to pronounce for some. Hence, it's often refered to by its former
Pomeranian name "Swinemunde", which was derived from the Slavic name of the Swina River. So, both Świnoujcie or Swinemunde would translate into English as SwineMouth or Hog's Mouth as in for example Portsmouth or Plymouth.

Archaeological evidence from the area which can be found in a museum in
┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie shows that the island has been inhabited by man since Stone Age, for at least 5000 years. ┼Üwinoujscie also has one of the oldest known ferry crossing, which was first mentioned in writing in 1230 AD, making it the oldest documented ferry crossings in the world that's still in use.

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie was the location of the Prussian Navel Command, and later until the end of WWII, the German Navel Command. The town was also known as the "Bathtub of Berlin" through the First and Second World Wars until March 12, 1945 when it was
bombed by USAF due to a British intelligence mistake. On October 6, 1945 the town was placed under Soviet ruled Polish control through President Franklin D. Roosevelt's last minute initiative. After the fall of the Iron Curtain, the governments of Germany and Poland affirmed the former agreement in 1990. After that, Poland joined the European Union and signed the Schengen Agreement.


Monument on the German-Polish boarder. A boardwalk to the beach in the background.
See it @ Google Street View

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie was visited by many famous artists of the time such as Marlene Dietrich, Mata Hari, Lyonel Feininger, and Prussian and Russian Emperors. Emperor Wilhelm II met with his cousin, the Tzar of Russia Nicholas II in Swinouj┼Ťcie. Emperor Wilhelm II visited Swinouj┼Ťcie every year. ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie is also where Emperor Wilhelm I had a love affair. His first illegitimate son was born and lived all his life in ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie [read more]. ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie was also visited by many international aristocrats and bourgeoisie; esp. during the industrial era.

Lyonel Feininger (1871-1956), a leading New York expressionist painter spent summer vacations on Usedom Island from 1909 until 1921 when he was studying art in Berlin. He was greatly inspired by the island and created many painting and drawings there and continued painting scenes from the island for the rest of his life, after returning to the United States. A fifty kilometers long Lyonel Feininger bike tour was created on the island with signs on posts and round markers on the ground to locations that were immortalized in the artist's works. Many of those can also found in ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie.

Swinemunde's nickname "The Bathtub of Berlin" (Berlin aka Sin City) says everything about the town. Ever since 1824 when underground sources of high quality brine and mud were discovered in Swinemunde and used in the local spas, the town became a leading 19th century world class seaside resort. It was especially popular throughout the Roaring Twenties until end of WWII. After the war, the town continued to be a popular resort but behind the Iron Curtain.

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie is also associated with
Teodor Fontane; an important 19th-century liberal German writer. Fontane spent part of his childhood in Swinemunde after his family fell into some disrepair due to his Father's gambling depths. Today, there is a small makeshift museum in the town's center dedicated to Fontane on the site where Fontane's family home and pharmacy once stood.

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie is also where
Baroness Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven was born. For those who may not know the Baroness, she was an important American Dadaist artist and poet that worked and lived in New York's historic Greenwich Village. The Baroness held art exhibits in many fine galleries and high places including The White House. In a way, perhaps she embodies well the town's former free and bohemian type spirit that drew many artists and forward thinkin people to its shores until the mid 1940s.


Baltic Park Molo and Radisson Blu ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie



Galeria Promenada on the seaside promenade

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie has two promenades. The first is on the Baltic Sea coast and the second is on the Swina River. Compared to neighboring German towns on the other side of the island, ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie has a more urban character and is becoming the island's leading shopping and business center. There are many shopping malls, leading European supermarkets, international hotels, fast food chains such as McDonald's, a 3D Cinema by Corso and many other conveniences. Therefore, one can go shopping in Swinoujscie all year-round while enjoying the four seasons and the elements on the island's pristine sandy beaches and Eco zones.


Stop Shop shopping market



CORSO Shopping Center & Cinema



CORSO Shopping Center & Cinema



Leading grocery supermarkets

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie is also a busy transit center for regular passenger connections with Ystad and Trelleborg in Sweden, Denmark, Germany and historic island of Wolin. It's also near the island of Rugen were the historic Cape Arkona is located. Plans are also underway to restore an old railroad connection through the Karnin Lift Bridge, which would shorten travel time between Berlin and the island to about two hours.

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie has a perfect environment for cycling tourism, and has become a center for the
best cycling routs in Europe that stretch along the Baltic Sea coast of Germany and Poland. Long distance routs go as far as Hamburg, Berlin, Sopot, Gdansk, Gdynia, Rugen Island and also Sweden and Denmark. Shorter routs are around Usedom island, Wolin Island, Szczecin (Stettin) Lagoon and through various popular resort towns, historic sites, a Viking village on Wolin Island, luscious wilderness and many other tourist attractions.

┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie is the fourth and most important imperial resort (Kaiserbader) on Usedom island. On the neighboring island of Wolin is Miedzyzdroje (German: Misdroy), which is another popular imperial resort located in Poland. It's very easy to commute between the two resorts by city bus that runs between ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie's Warszowa neighborhood on Wolin Island and Mi─Ödzyzdroje (Misdroy). The bus stop to Mi─Ödzyzdroje is just across the street from to the Polish train station, which is located across the street from the ferry crossing. There are also regular minibus services to Szczecin (Stettin) and the "Solidarity" SzczecinÔÇôGoleni├│w Airport. Seasonal air connections to the island are also available with some German, Polish and Swiss cities at the Heringsdorf Airport (info in Polish) located near Garz, Germany. So, we are hoping to see you here soon.



Seaside promenade



Promenade on the Świna River






┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie Centrum on the ┼Üwina River side of the island



┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie Centrum on the ┼Üwina River side of the island



The ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie Lighthouse was built in 1828. Today, it is the tallest lighthouse on the Baltic Sea
and the 15th tallest traditional lighthouse in the world.




The iconic Beacon in the shape of a windmill in ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie (M├╝hlenbake) was built between 1873-74



Marina in ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie



Seaside Promenade in ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie



Seaside Promenade in ┼Üwinouj┼Ťcie





On the beach



Showers on the beach



























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