The Wadden Sea National Park

The largest national park in Denmark was inaugurated in October of 2010. This wonderful national park includes the Waddensea, the Waddensea islands, Skallingen, Varde Adal, the area around Marbaek and a part of the marshlands behind the dikes on the mainland. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The Wadden Sea National Park has become a place to which visitors flock. Here you can find wonderful nature and accommodations like holiday homes, camping sites, and youth hostels. There are wonderful islands along the coast to explore such as Romo, Mando, and Fano. Everywhere you look you can see the sea, the dunes, the woods, heaths, and fauna which are so lovely. On the mainland visitors are attracted to the dikes, the marshland and love to look at the migrating birds.

The Waddensea is a part of the Danish/German/Dutch Waddensea and it is one of the most important nature reserves. Every spring and autumn the Waddensea welcomes 10 – 12 million migratory birds. Visitors can find mussels, archimedean screws, lugworms, and others that the Waddensea is rich with and within the marshes.

You can also see ducks such as the mallard, the widgeon, and the pintail as well as the brent goose and the barnacle goose. Among the migratory birds here are the starlings which gather in the thousands above the marsh at dusk. They come each day in the spring and in the autumn to feed on flies and other insects creating astounding circling flocks at sunset. The best place to view this from is the marshes on the outskirts of Ribe. The Waddensea is also home to the largest population of the common seal which rests on the banks.

The Wadden Sea Center helps educate visitors about this area. Here you can see exhibits about migratory birds; an exhibit about life and culture in the area from the middle ages to today and an interesting show about the storm surges that have affected the Wadden Sea from past the centuries. They also organize more than 80 guided tours which include a tour by “tractor bus” to explore the local flora and fauna found on the island of Mando at low tide.

The center organizes groups of oyster hunters from October to Easter. Participants take a 3km guided walk to see the oyster beds where they can pick and eat as many oysters as they like.

Visitors can visit the oldest city in Denmark Ribe which celebrates its seafaring history every year and holds the Wadden Sea Regatta. Ships sail into this town by way of the Ribe River and out through the sluice Kammerslusen sailing on the old trade routes of the Wadden Sea from Ribe to Fano island.

Visit the lovely island of Fano which has wonderful wide beaches and you can find beach activities like blo-karting and wind/kite surfing. Each June for two weeks it hosts the International Kite Festival where you can see a sky full of kites in all shapes and sizes and colors. It brings in kite flyers from all over the globe. In August there is the Family Kite Festival where families can participate in kite-making workshops.

Nordby the main town on the island is picturesque and has bright colorful houses with thatched roofs. You can see specialty shops like the butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker.

At the tip of the island is the small and remote village of Sonderho which is worth exploring.


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