Bad Doberan and Heiligendamm  germany
01 Charnel House (Ossuary) 02 Bad Doberaner Münster 03 Bad Doberaner Monastery Wall
04 Kempinski Grand Hotel Heiligendamm    
Bad Doberan

Bad Doberan is a town in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. It is the capital of the district Bad Doberan. Population: 11.424 (2006).

Bad Doberan is situated just 15 kilometers (9 mi) west of Rostock's city centre and therefore part of most developed regions in the north-eastern part of Germany. The town is nestling between beautiful beech tree forests just 6 km from the Baltic Sea and stands for one of the earliest German settlements in Mecklenburg. Today the town is a very popular bathing resort, thanks to Heiligendamm, a district of Bad Doberan situated directly at the cliff line of the Baltic. Historically, Doberan used to be the summer residence for the Mecklenburg Dukes who resideed in Schwerin and for their entourage.

The area's first settlers were Cistercian monks, who founded a monastery in 1171. Doberan (its original name) remained a small village until 1793, when the duke of Mecklenburg founded the first German bathing resort, Heiligendamm. Doberan and Heiligendamm have been connected by a narrow gauge railway the Mollibahn since 1886. The town has been called Bad Doberan since 1921 ("Bad" means "spa" and is a common prefix in Germany).

In August 1932, Adolf Hitler was granted an honorary citizenship; Bad Doberan was the first town in Germany to do so. In fact, as the certificate was lost, there was disagreement for several years as to whether he had been granted honorary citizenship or not. However, in Spring 1932 the Nazi Party had an absolute majority in the town council assembly, and published articles still exist from that time, so it was generally accepted that Hitler was really honoured in this way. With the town hosting the G8 summit in June 2007, it was decided on April 2 that Hitler should be removed from the town's roll of honour, although normally an honorary citizenship of this kind ends upon the death of the person involved.


The classicist buildings characterizing the centres of Bad Doberan and Heiligendamm were all constructed between 1801 and 1836 by the architect Carl Theodor Severin.

However, the most famous building in Bad Doberan is the cathedral, or minster (Doberaner Münster, 1368), which once belonged to a Cistercian monastery and is one of the most impressive examples of North German brick architecture.

Bad Doberan is also home to the "Molli". A historic 19th centurey steam engine that acts as a tourist attraction/shuttle for everyday use, in the town and to the nearby beach village.

The town plays host to annual festival celebrating the music of Frank Zappa, the Zappanale, and also displays a bust of the artist's head.
Bad Doberan, a small town with a great past, lies amidst dense beech forests close to the Baltic coast. The Doberan Minister, the narrow-guage steam train “Molli,” and medicinal mudbaths have made it famous.Since 1886 the resort railway “Molli” has linked Bad Doberan with the coast. On its way it passes the racecourse. The Baltic Race Meeting, which has been revived since 1993, has again become the highlight of the racing season. “Taking a cure” in Bad Doberan and Heiligendamm has a long tradition. Sea water, local medicinal mud, and the clean air guarantee good results. Bad Doberan also has a lot to offer in the way of culture, including exhibitions in the local galleries, concerts in the minster and the historic rooms, summer theatre in Ehm Welk House or the monastery ruins, and guided tours of the minister and monastery grounds.


Tourist-Info Bad Doberan
Severinstrasse 6
D-18209 Bad Doberan
Tel: 038203-62154
Fax: 038203-77050

The seaside resort Heiligendamm, situated on the Baltic Sea coast, was founded in 1793. It is the oldest seaside spa in Germany. Heiligendamm is part of the town Bad Doberan in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

Because of the classicist white buildings lining its beach promenade, the town is also known as the "White Town by the Sea" (German: Die weiße Stadt am Meer). Today, the area by the sea is occupied by a five-star hotel. A narrow-gauge steam railway, known as the "Molli", links Heiligendamm with Kühlungsborn and Bad Doberan.


On July 13, 2006, United States President George W. Bush stayed at Heiligendamm while on a state visit to see German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Stralsund.

On June 6 to 8, 2007, Heiligendamm's Kempinski Grand Hotel hosted the 33rd summit of G8 leaders. As a result thousands of anticapitalist activists blocked the roads to Heiligendamm and an estimated 25,000 anti-globalization protesters demonstrated in nearby Rostock.

Heiligendamm was developed as an elegant meeting place for the nobility and high society. Among its most prominent guests were the German Emperors.

Its first guest in 1793 was the Grand Duke of Mecklenburg Frederick Francis I; he made the resort fashionable. Between 1793 and 1870, Johann Christoph, Heinrich von Seydwitz, Carl Theodor Severin, and Gustav Adolph Demmler created a veritable Gesamtkunstwerk for bathing and lodging. Heiligendamm was always the most elegant seaside resort in Germany. Nobility from throughout Europe used it as a summer getaway well into the 20th century.

Panorama of Heiligendamm, 1887

After the Second World War, the buildings of Heiligendamm were used as sanatoria and recovery ward. When Mecklenburg became part of the communist GDR, some of Heiligendamm's famous buildings were demolished and replaced by more utilitarian structures. After the German reunification in 1989/1990, a group of investors bought most of the buildings and undertook a major programme of refurbishment. A new company, the Kempinski Grand Hotel, opened in spring of 2003 - it uses six historical buildings. Development has led to some conflict with residents, as main streets and cycle paths have been removed or rerouted. Also again some of the famous buildings were demolished - more than in GDR-time.


in English language
Charles James Apperley: "Nimrods German Tour" – a travel through northern Germany, especially to Heiligendamm in 1828. Publishing company: Godewind Verlag, Germany 2006. ISBN 978-3-939198-70-3

in German language
Hans Thielcke: Die Bauten des Seebades Doberan - Heiligendamm um 1800 und Ihr Baumeister Severin. Godewind Verlag, 2004 ISBN 978-3-938347-90-4. (Reprint d. Originalausgabe von 1917)
Friedrich Compart: Geschichte des Klosters Doberan. Godewind Verlag, 2004. ISBN 978-3-938347-07-2. (Reprint der Originalausgabe von 1872)
Heinrich Hesse: Die Geschichte von Doberan-Heiligendamm. Godewind Verlag, Wismar 2004, ISBN 978-3-938347-09-6. (Bearbeitete Neuauflage der Originalausgabe von 1838)
Adolf Nizze: Doberan-Heiligendamm: Geschichte des ersten deutschen Seebades. Godewind Verlag, Wismar 2004, ISBN 978-3-938347-23-2. (Bearbeitete Neuauflage der Originalausgabe von 1823)
Die Reise eines Gesunden in die Seebäder Swinemünde, Putbus und Doberan. Godewind Verlag, Wismar 2005, ISBN 978-3-938347-73-7. (Bearbeitete Neuauflage der Originalausgabe von 1823)
Hans-Jürgen Herbst: Kalender 2007, Doberan & Heiligendamm, erstes deutsches Seebad. Godewind Verlag, 2007, ISBN 978-3-938347-57-7.
Dr. Samuel G. Vogel: Allgemeine Baderegeln zum Gebrauche für Badelustige überhaupt und diejenigen insbesondere, welche sich des Seebades in Doberan bedienen. Godewind Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-938347-88-1. (Bearbeitete Neuauflage der Originalausgabe von 1817)
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