There’s a lot to discover. Sylt sights are scattered all over the island and there are many worth seeing. We have compiled the most important information for you:
Sylt sights – Important buildings
Old Frisian House
Here you can get to know the old Frisian domestic culture from the 18th century. The house was built in 1739 in the Ortypical style. There it was inhabited by a teacher and chronicler of the island Christian Peter Hansen. It has been renovated continuously and the good condition has been maintained so that you get a good feeling for the time.
The address of the old Frisian house is: Am Kliff 13, 25980 Sylt/Keitum
The opening hours: During the week from 10-17, on weekends from 11-17. In the winter season Thursday-Sunday from 11-15 hrs.
An important Sylt sight is the Hinderburgdamm. It was opened in 1927 and connects the island with the mainland in Schleswig-Holstein over a distance of 11 kilometres. It is a purely railway line. However, the railway carries a large number of cars to and from the island every day. It took four years to build and more than 120,000 tons of stone and three million cubic metres of sand and clay were used. The dam, originally used as a single-track line, has been able to be used on two tracks since 1972, which has led to a considerable increase in tourism.
Kurhaus / City Hall / Casino
In the spa house, which burned down several times, there were different concepts of use in the past. Due to its wooden construction, the Kurhaus has burned down several times but has been rebuilt again and again. There are different concepts for the use of the rooms. The city administration and the casino are under one roof. The Casion has been used for gambling since 1949. Whether Blackjack, Roulette or Poker. Baccara and slot machines are also available to the guests. Visitors are welcome to come back again. The casino is by the way the smallest casino in Germany. To the Casion belongs also a bar in which the suitable beverages are served. The casino is therefore one of the most popular Sylt sights.
Address: Sylt Casino Lounge – Unique in Germany Andreas-Nielsen-Strasse 1, 25980 Westerland
Address: Municipality of Sylt Island and city administration, Andreas-Nielsen-Strasse 1, 25980 Westerland
There is a cherry on the wall with pews
Sylt sights – churches
Village church St. Niels
The village church is located in Alt-Westerland. It is surrounded by historic Frisian houses and an idyllic cemetery. It was consecrated in 1637 and is the oldest building in Westerland. Special features of the village church are the altar and the crucifix above the arch to the chancel.
The address of the village church is Kirchenweg 37, 25980 Westerland.
The opening hours: Daily from 10-16.
Church of St. Martin
First mentioned in 1240, but probably built before that, St. Martin is clearly one of the oldest Sylt sights. It is a Protestant-Lutheran church. It refers to St. Martin of Tours, who played an important role in the Catholic Church. The special thing about this church is the fact that it lacks a steeple. It was probably not built because there was great poverty on the island at that time.
The address of the St. Martin church is: Bahnhofstr. 2, 25980 Morsum.
Sylt sights: Church of St. Nicolai
The largest church on Sylt is the St. Nicolai Church. Construction began in 1906 and lasted until it was consecrated in 1908. It can be found in Westerland. A special feature is its three-nave brick construction. The style contains elements of romanticism as well as brick gothic. The church was named after the patron saint Bishop Nicolaus of Myra, who is responsible for both merchants and seafarers. Further information is available from the parish of Westerland.
The address: St.-Nicolai-Str./Maybachstr., 25980 Westerland
The opening hours: Daily except Wednesdays from 09-16
Church St. Thomas – The church with the sail
The church was built from 1969-1970. Its special feature is its architecture, which is reminiscent of a sail. It is also white. This makes the whole church look like a ship. The chancel is particularly high and the bell is located in the top. The interior decoration is simple, but the colored windows showing the Passion of Christ add colorful accents to the church.
The address of the St. Thomas church: Hangstr. 38, 45997 Hörnum
The opening hours: Daily, Sundays at 09:30 service
Sylt places of interest – Museums
Adventure centre forces of nature
An exhibition for young and old when it comes to the violence of the North Sea, the weather and the climate. There are unique film recordings as well as exciting innovations and a themed playground to see. Many interesting exhibits animate the visitors to inform as well as to marvel. The adventure centre is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., in the summer months even until 7 p.m. In addition to the exhibition, there are interesting guided tours and lectures on the topics presented. Forces of nature is one of the most action-packed Sylt sights.
Address: Hafenstr. 37, 25992 List
Opening hours: 10-18 h (in the summer months until 19 h)
Sylt sights: Museum of local history
The museum was established in the former captain’s house of Sylt. It contains an important collection of objects relevant to the history of Slyt. One enters the museum through the jawbone of a fin whale. Artefacts from every historically relevant period can be found, which document the history up to the present day. For example, you can discover both tools and weapons that the people of Slyt used to hunt whales. The art department displays important works of art by local artists.
Address: Sölring Foriining, Am Kliff 19, 25980 Keitum
Fire Brigade Museum
The small museum on the island focuses on the fire brigade. Traditional fire fighting technology and historical documents are presented in the former fire station. If you are interested in firefighting and fire fighting, this is the right place for you.
Address: C.P.-Hansen-Allee, 25980 Keitum
Sylt sights – nature
In Schleswig-Holstein the heath areas have become rare. The island of Sylt is the big exception; today up to 50% of the total heathland in Schleswig-Holstein is located here. The heath areas allow a special mix of species which find a home here. A heathland is home to animals as well as plants that cope well with drought and wind. This is why the Braderuper Heider has been placed under nature conservation in order to preserve this habitat. There are three main types of heather that grow in Braderuper Heath: crowberry in spring, bell heather in summer and broom heather in autumn. The heather needs regular care, the top layer must be removed so that the heather plants can grow again. A walk through this unique natural experience should be part of every stay on Sylt.
Address: Natural history walk through the Braderuper Heath, M.-T.-Buchholz-Stieg 3, 25996 Braderup
Sylt sights: Hörnum Odde
Odde is a mixed area of heathlands and dunes at the southern tip of Sylt that lead down to the sea. This area is dependent on the tides. So the appearance changes regularly. In the 1970s a walk took about 3 1/2 hours, today it only takes about half the time for a round trip. On the other hand, measures such as sand filling and various fortification measures are used to preserve this protected area. Detailed information on the subject can be obtained on a guided tour of about two hours at the listening point Odde.
Address: Geological hike around the Hörnum Odde, Rantumer Str. 20, 25997 Hörnum
Cliff path – hike from Keitum to Kampen
The writer Max Frisch called the hiking trail „the green forgetting“. The hiking trail is about seven kilometres long and leads from Keitum to Kampen. It is one of the most beautiful hiking trails on the whole of Sylt, especially at daytime, where you can enjoy the peace and quiet.
A festival for ornithologists. At low tide, many species of birds forage on the beach. The birds nest and breed in the cliff itself. As an important plant, the beach grass is worth mentioning. With its roots it prevents the uncontrolled migration of dunes and thus represents a natural protection for dunes. Many Sylt sights are also based on the attractive mixture of cliffs, dunes and heathland. These natural backdrops make you want to explore them in detail. It is fun to visit the birds, at a clear distance, and watch them feeding for their brood.
Address: Natural history geological tour at Morsum Cliff, M.-T.-Buchholz-Stich 10a, 25996 Wenningstedt
The Rantum Basin has had a turbulent past. For a long time, people here vacillated between the use of the region as a seaplane landing site or its preservation by nature conservation. Today the Rantum Basin is a nature reserve which is home to more than 30 bird species. The Rantum Basin is characterised by a large open saltwater area as well as by mudflats, siltation zones and salt marshes. Fresh salt water enters the basin daily via a sluice, a water passage in the dike. In the northern area, thanks to a small dam, there is a freshwater area where other water plants can thrive and grow. This enables a great variety of species to thrive in the Rantum basin. The association Jordsand looks after the Rantum Basin. The association carries out statistics and censuses on the one hand and supervises the nature conservation on the other hand. Guided tours are offered regularly where the diversity in the Rantum Basin is discussed in detail.
Address: Association Jordsand for the Protection of Seabirds and Nature (04102 – 32 656)
Red Cliff Sylt
Is a fascinating steep coast on Sylt, which is one of the most beautiful on the North Sea. The cliff was formed around 120,000 years ago when glaciers deposited huge layers of rock. Due to the warming after the Ice Age, the sea level rose. This process caused parts of the rock to break off, leaving behind the typical cliff face. The red cliff is located between Wenningstedt and Kampen towards the open sea on the west side. In former times every sailor recognized the typical appearance of the red cliff and knew that he was near Sylt. The cliff is threatened by flooding. An association has made it its business to preserve the red cliff. Donations as well as participation in a guided tour along the cliff help to finance the preservation of the red cliff. Why not take part in a guided tour and have a great time on the west coast of Sylt.
Address: Geological guidance to the red cliff, beach crossing Berthin Bleeg road (at the telephone booth), 25996 Wenningstedt
Bird bays are historical facilities that were formerly used for hunting ducks. The first bird bays were built in the 16th century in the Netherlands. In the 18th century the British moved on and shortly after that the technique became known on the North Frisian Islands. This technique was used until around the 20th century. A bird bunk consisted of an artificial pond over which a net was stretched. At the end was a cage through which wild ducks were lured into the net with the help of tamed ducks. The animals caught in this way were finally killed by an employee of the bunk. Today, no ducks are caught here any more, but the nature created around the bunk is cared for and protected. You can take part in interesting guided tours and enjoy the culinary delights of the nearby restaurants as well as end the evening in a relaxed atmosphere.
Address: Lister Street 100, 25999 Kampen
wandering dune List Sylt
A shifting sand dune is a natural phenomenon in which sand piles up in one place due to a constant wind direction in order to move to a spot at the next opportunity. Shifting sand dunes can even bury houses and trees under them, if it takes long enough. The wind blows in one direction until a small mountain is formed. On Sylt the sand is driven further and further to the east by the regular westerly wind. In former times there were several shifting sand dunes on Sylt, so also in Rantum. But here the migration of the sand was stopped by planting heather on the surface, whose roots led to the consolidation of the subsoil. In Listland the last wandering dune on Sylt is on its way and can be observed. A walk to explore this special natural spectacle in Listland is an impressive experience and is definitely worthwhile.
Wadden Sea – Unesco World Heritage
Sylt lies in the area of the Wadden Sea, which means that depending on the tide, you can see the sea or the bottom of the sandy muddy Wadden Sea. At low tide you have the inviting opportunity to make an excursion to the bottom of the sea and see what birds and worms are doing in this unique habitat. Those who are not familiar with the tides should visit a guided tour in order not to be surprised by the tides. There are several providers on the island. Very interesting and for every visitor an absolute highlight among the Sylt sights. The next dates you will find here.
Seal trips – A visit to the seals
If you like the cute animals with the big saucer eyes, this is the right place. There are boat trips near the seal banks where you can see large seal colonies. On the way there, usually a fishing net is thrown out in order to be able to look at some smaller inhabitants of the Wadden Sea for a short time. For the small animals this poses no danger and they are poured back into the sea immediately after viewing. Even though a seal looks very cute, it is still the largest predator in the North Sea. Apart from humans, these animals have no natural enemies in their own habitat.
Bad times for the seal
After the terrible time, in the 18th to 19th century, when seals were culled to make both tran and leather boots from their fur, the seal population is doing very well today. Nevertheless, the abundant population can also become a problem. If the animals are infected with distemper and infect each other, it can lead to the death of 50-70% of all seals.
A further problem can arise if people get too close to the seals. At that moment the contact between a seal mother and her young can break off. Under certain circumstances, the mother may not dare to accept her baby again. The young animals left alone are called howlers, because the animals left on the beach call for their mother desperately, which sounds like howling to humans. Fortunately, there are seal stations for such cases, which collect the stranded seals and lovingly pep them up and later release them back into the wild.
Today the seal is doing well
If the seal is doing well then he mainly does one thing – he lies on the sandbank and plays with his conspecifics or goes to sleep. Until the next tide, then the seal goes on a fish hunt. On average, seals live to be about 25 years old in the wild, but in exceptional cases they can also reach the age of 40 years. This absolute highlight among the Sylt sights is something you must see. But please always respectfully maintain the necessary distance to the animals in order to protect them. You would certainly wish for something similar in place of the animals. You can book the tours here.
Sylt places of interest – other
In the aquarium one finds thousands of sea inhabitants that one can have a close look at. There are a total of 25 different tanks that simulate different sea worlds. The biggest tank with approximately 500.000 litres of water contains corals. There is also a Helgoland pool and many other theme pools. These two pools can be accessed through a 10-metre long acrylic tunnel, so that you are right in the middle of it instead of just being there. You can also take part in a feeding or a guided tour. There is also a restaurant for refreshments. The aquarium on Sylt is open daily from 10 to 18 o’clock.
Address: The Seawater Paradise, Gaadt 33, 25980 Westerland
Biikeburning is a typical, sylter, mystic custom to say goodbye to winter and welcome spring. For this purpose every year on 21 February a straw doll or a straw barrel is hung over a fire. This lasts until the straw doll or barrel has fallen into the fire. Originally, this was the end of the winter period. From then on, measures were taken to open the whaling season. At that time, going hunting served the survival of the community. Fortunately, this tradition now has only a symbolic character.
Today the community is looking forward to the first tourists and the arrival of spring. It is an important custom that is maintained and can be found all over the island. The individual towns on the island of Sylt also compete for the most beautiful and largest Biikebrennen, because you don’t want to be worse off than your neighbour. So you have enough choice where you want to participate.
Even today it is still puzzling how it was possible some 5,000 years ago to create a mound grave as massive and large as Denghoog. The largest mound grave on Sylt contains a burial chamber which is about 15 square metres in size and has a standing height of 1.50m to 1.90m. An expert guided tour can clarify open questions about this mysterious place.
Address: Expert guided tours, Next to the Friesenkapelle, 25996 Wenningstedt