Some of the smaller seaside resorts we visited on our return to the Baltic Coast, Poland in August 2012
by Praskipark on September 5, 2012
Dźwirzyno is a town on the Baltic Coast in Western Pomerania that we touched on slightly on our last trip to this area of Poland in June of this year. I wanted to revisit because the kitsch souvenir shops attracted me and I was determined to buy a wooden seagull. Luckily, I found my white seagull at the far end of the main shopping drag close to the turn off for the port. The shop inside was a cornucopia of all things decorative and wacky; lighthouses, fishermen, wind chimes in natural wood, amber and coloured shells. These wonderful knick-knacks filled the front of the shop inside and as we went in to pay,I heard the tragic voice of Bruce Springsteen singing, ‘Philadelphia.’ As much as I love this song I couldn’t wait for my seagull to be wrapped in newspaper so I could depart quickly before filling up with tears.Holding Sammy Seagull close to my heart I trundled further up the street until I could see a multi-coloured Big Wheel turning round and round in the slight breeze. We had arrived at the entrance of the port. Which route? Which way to go, left or right? Such a difficult decision.Eventually, we took the path to the left as I spotted a row of real life seagulls standing close to the edge of the canal. It is very strange how only Polish seagulls stand in a row, always very calm and tame. One seagull in particular was so tame he let me go close up and take a picture of him. He was very handsome and didn’t flinch.The canal looked very photogenic with the late August sun shining on the silver ripples created by the warm breeze. Every now and again a seagull would rise up, take to the air and then pounce on the water in hope of catching a fish.Before reaching the Big Wheel and small fairground I noticed a picture of Clark Gable holding Vivian Leigh in his arms, a shot from the film, ‘Gone with the Wind’. This multicolour picture decorated the pay booth of the Big Wheel.On this side of the water there are a couple of old fishing boats anchored to the side which are attractive but what really interested me were the numerous anchors stacked perfectly in rows and flag poles bearing flags of many colours.Walking back towards the span of the jade metal bridge that crosses over the canal we walked on to the right side of the canal which paints a different picture altogether.The boats anchored to the side here are of a superior quality, yet there are interesting pieces of marine machinery lying about which always fascinates me. A few steps away from the boats we turned right on to the beach; a beautiful expanse of white, soft sand.A few people were sat on the beach at this time as the heat of the day’s sun had begun to diminish. The light quality was excellent for painting or taking photographs. As the clouds shifted from one to the other the rays that shone on the rigging and water gave a monochrome look, it was as if the beach and people on it were taking part in a black and white movie.We walked a long way down this beach because I wanted to see the waves come tumbling in onto the shore. The wind was high and it was a lot of fun trying to keep stable and upright, walking on the wet sand, waiting for the series of seven waves to come crashing in, hoping that the last one would create the photo I was looking for.The port and beach of Dźwirzyno were an unexpected treasure. I enjoyed my time here. The town is like most of the small coastal towns along this part of the Baltic Coast. I can take or leave the town, I have no strong feelings but the port area is very pretty and interesting.
by Praskipark on September 14, 2012
Having never really explored the smaller seaside resorts on the Baltic Coast after Dźwirzyno we decided to take a ride out to look at Mrzeżyno. This particular evening we were going to prepare a barbecue but first, we had to find a shop selling chicken drummers.Driving into the main strut of the town over the ramps I realised that this town was a bit more classy than its neighbour. The same 'Kiss me Quick' effect was here also but the retail outlets looked more sophisticated as did the bars and cafes. The town was nicely sign-posted in blue and white wooden signs which was a bonus.We drove to the port area first and decided to walk around the town later. As always, parking is an issue but we did find an open area with a sign saying, 5 zloty per hour, although we couldn't see anyone to pay. We drove in and parked up. No sooner had the automatic locking clicked into place, when a young girl appeared like lightning behind us with a pad and pen, taking down the number of our car and her hand outstretched for payment. Where she came from I will never know.From where we parked the car I could see ripples of water hopping and jumping with the wind. The port area looked inviting. Alongside the waterfront were a selection of very pretty restaurants catering for visitors. Fish and chips was the meal on offer. Well, it is a seaside resort! Last time we ate fish and chips in this part of the world we were very disappointed; they didn't taste anything like fish and chips from Whitby in England. We passed by the restaurants but part of me thought that we would return and try one of the restaurants out. Perhaps we would get lucky next time.Boats docked in the harbour were large and antiquated, one in particular was very handsome and people stood in front of the bow so they could have their photographs taken.Wooden benches were sat in a row leading to the beach area. Here, ladies and gentlemen of all ages were wearing interesting swimsuits as they sat and stared at the water. When I was younger I never saw the appeal of sitting and staring, now I do, it is very relaxing. The sound and movement of water relaxes the mind.The concrete pier attracted my eye not because it was attractive in itself but the man made triangular rock shapes that were piled up alongside the pier were fascinating and looked primeval.A lot of people sat on this beach on the right handed side of the pier but it wasn't too my liking. It was a small area and looked a bit scrappy and untidy. The beach on the opposite side looked more appealing; wild and untamed. This was obviously the commercial side.The wind started to turn at this point and the sky changed from blue to slate grey. It was time to find a shop that sold food provisions instead of holiday tat.We walked back into the town and actually found a real supermarket.The shelves looked half empty like they were waiting to be filled from a new delivery or waiting to be emptied so that the shop could close down for the season. We were in luck, there was a deli/meat counter. There wasn't a chicken drummer to be found only pork steaks which we purchased half a kilo. My husband fancied a sausage but I never know which is the best Polish sausage to buy for barbecuing. We asked the young assistant and she sold us a kilo of home-made sausages which smelt strongly of garlic and were recommended for barbecuing.Having left the half-empty supermarket we had a last look at the town of Mrzeżyno and walked back to the car. Perhaps we would revisit in the hope of finding decent fish and chips - who knows.
by Praskipark on September 20, 2012
Ustronie Morskie is the first big seaside resort after Kolobrzeg in the direction of Gdansk on the Baltic Coast.We wanted to view as many of the coastal towns as we could during our visit in August whether they were small or large resorts. My husband had told me that this particular resort was popular with some of his students so I was intrigued to see how it differed from Grzybowo and what made the town so popular.The day we visited was a very warm day. I think the temperature was around 25 degrees centigrade which is unusual for the end of August. We drove straight down the main road and found a car parking area with an attendant. The space was opposite a handsome church which of course I had to investigate later. We didn't have any change and thought the attendant wouldn't let us park the car because of this. Poland is notorious for never having any change.Fortunately, we were in luck. He let us park up and said we could pay him later.Off we went to view the town and beach. I immediately thought that the town had a French feel to it. A lot of buildings had been newly built in French style with little towers and arched windows. The main street was another two sided thoroughfare of outlets selling anything from earrings, buckets and spades, scarves, amber, jokey name plates and Haribo sweets.Every other outlet was an ice cream kiosk selling multi-flavoured lody at 2.50 zloty for a single cone and 4.50 zloty for a larger cone. Goffrey's were on sale everywhere and I saw many a small gleeful child holding the famous fruit and cream waffle securely so as not to let it fall to the ground and be wasted.Once you have walked through a Baltic resort main street it is difficult to observe anything distinctive or new. This street looked like all the others we had seen that week.Walking at the back of the town was a different experience. Here, was a shaded wooded path/cycle path that led to the beach.The beach is a vast expanse of silky, white sand with hundreds of bodies; lying, sitting, stretching or playing. Obviously, this is a popular family beach but in my opinion the beach is more beautiful, naked. Highlights of the beach are, the newly erected wooden pier. You are able to walk underneath and paddle in the water as the waves slowly come tumbling in. The pictures the water paints as it rolls over the sand and underneath the pier are mesmerising. I wanted to stand there all day, watching the images.Wooden groins stretch all along the beach and into the sea. At the far end of all the groins sit friendly seagulls staring into space, taking in the view of the rippled waves and the beach beyond, like old men sat in deckchairs.Standing on the second pier made from concrete and steel, painted buttercup yellow, I spied two cheerfully painted boats parked upon the sand. The scene reminded me of Norfolk and its golden sandy beaches. The boats didn't look like they were in use, they created a pretty scene with the sandy bay and pine forest as a back drop.Along the forest side of the beach were rows and rows of huge, heavy concrete triangular stones forming an image of a land that could have belonged to Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble. I have no idea what these stones are and how they arrived in this spot. They are too heavy for a man or woman to lift and must have been transported to that spot by heavy machinery. Some people might view them as being an eye sore in such a pretty coastal area but I thought they were interesting to look at. Dead tree trunks that had dried with the scorching sun and salt from the spray of the sea were also intermingled amongst the concrete triangles. These scenes were some of the best of contemporary art.As a beach to sit on, I wasn't too keen but I loved all the other features. Walking back through the forest we came to the church again and could see its tall tower from the path. It looked spanking new with bright red bricks and sculptured gardens.I am glad we drove out to visit Ustronie Morskie. I wouldn't like to stay at this resort for more than a few hours as it isn't my thing but I can see why it appeals to families. There is everything here to keep a family entertained and plenty of restaurants which looked to be cheaper yet more sophisticated than other resorts. prices of fancy goods seemed to be cheaper too although that could be because the season was drawing to an end and salespeople needed to sell off their wares.
by Praskipark on September 24, 2012
Having seen quite a few of the seaside resorts along the Baltic Coast that were in reasonable driving distance from our base at Grzybowo I thought it would be nice to drive inland, not too far, just enough kilometres to find a church and a different style of architecture.We came across a small hamlet/village called Trzebiatow, a few kilometres inland from Mrzeżyno. I should have known better, there wasn’t actually anything to see apart from the focal point, the village church which stands on the main road opposite a very old fashioned looking sklep (grocery shop).The church was interesting as it looked like the original building had been stripped of paint ready for a new look. A wooden bell tower had been built on the back of the church which was quite high and attractive to look at. We could see the original bricks that formed the archway of the back entrance of the church.Not being an expert on the architecture in this part of Poland, I would say that the whole building looked like a makeshift affair. The roof was made from aluminum and the large windows on all sides of the church were illuminated from within with many colours from the stained glass windows. A golden yellow was the dominant colour and shone through into the small, tidy garden enveloping the church.This is a very small village, in lots of ways like a French hamlet. The farm buildings were large and in very good condition with vegetable plots and apple trees. A lane leading from the church led to a farm with rustic farm implements scattered around. We didn’t venture very far down this lane as we could hear quick, sharp, snapping noises coming from the farm’s guard dogs. I didn’t fancy a bite on the bottom so we walked back to the car and drove back to the coast.I did notice several signs advertising rooms to let and people were cycling so I would imagine visitors who were looking for a quiet, peaceful holiday away from the coast could easily find a room in this village. There is also a campsite in the forest and paths for walking and cycling.I think a cycle ride from Mrzeżyno to Trzebiatow would be a pleasant way to spend a couple of hours if you fancied getting away from it all.I recommend looking at the church especially at the windows as they were unusual and had a fairy tale quality about them. Apart from the odd passing car I didn't hear any other sounds and the only people I saw was a lady hanging out her washing and an old man sat outside the sklep.Trzebiatow is somewhere that is definitely stuck in a time warp, a touch of old Poland.
by Praskipark on October 1, 2012
Rogowo is one of the strangest seaside resorts I have ever been to, it's like a ghost town. First of all let me explain where the place is. It is a small resort on the Baltic Coast in western Pommerania, Poland, situated in between Dźwirzyno and Mrzeżyno and approximately 96 kilometres from Szczecin. We visited in August of this year and although we did see some people milling around, the place seemed pretty dead. Apart from Polish and a few German tourists it isn't generally visited by anyone else. I can't say I blame then, apart from the beach the rest of the place is non-de script. When the tourists have all gone home the village goes back to its even sleepier state. I think there are just over 300 people living in Rogowo and the village was part of Germany until 1945. Driving through the main thoroughfare of the village very slowly because of the speed ramps I was able to view the properties situated on either side of the road. A lot of the complexes looked very new, built in a mock Tudor style. I wondered why on earth would anyone want to book an apartment in a place like this let alone stay in a hotel for a week of which there are at least three or four. There are also some weird complexes with fences and landscaped gardens which look very institutionalised. At first I thought they were retirement homes for the elderly; a place to retire to near the sea except I didn't see the sea at first. The beach and coast are a long walk from the main hub of the town. It turns out that these complexes are military hotels.I mentioned the main hub of the town but really it is nothing to get excited about. There are a few souvenir shops selling tat, a supermarket, a couple of bars and restaurants and a small fairground.The beach is definitely hidden and once you have walked through the back of the forest trail you come acquainted with another stretch of white sand and rolling waves of the Baltic Sea. This beach is an extension of the coastline that I visit every year and is very pretty.Apart from sitting on the beach and taking in the fresh air, what else is there to do and why would anyone want to visit Rogowo for a holiday? My guess is, it is a good area for cycling and walking. I spotted different trails in the forest and on the opposite side of the road of the beach just before you enter the town there is a huge reservoir where people can walk around the edge or do a bit of fishing. There is a large parking area next to the reservoir so you don't have to worry where to leave your car. I suppose if you want a break where you can be lazy, doing not much at all then this is the correct place to come to except the village doesn't have a lot of atmosphere and seems to me like it is a purpose built seaside resort. The weather here is pleasant with medium temperature ranges and always a light breeze; perfect for cycling and walking but not for swimming in the sea. Even in August it is a bit chilly.That's all about I can tell you about Rogowo. It's not somewhere I will visit again as it is dead and devoid of character.
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