Autumn 2021. In theory we could travel to other continents, but destinations we had in mind such as Japan or the United Kingdom were impossible to plan ahead. Instead we organised a rail trip to Eastern Europe, travelling to Berlin, Gdańsk, Wrocław, Karlovy Vary, Pilsen, Bratislava, Poprad, Vienna, Linz and Salzburg. By travelling to Germany, Poland, Czechia, Slovakia and Austria, we explore an area which was in the (not too distant) past bonded together by the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation and by Austria-Hungary.
On our journey from Berlin-Gesundbrunnen to Gdańsk Główny, we had an hour and a half in Szczecin, also known by its German name Stettin.
Szczecin is the capital and largest city of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship in northwestern Poland. Located near the Baltic Sea and the German border, it is a major seaport and Poland’s seventh-largest city. As of December 2019, the population was 401,907.
Szczecin is located on the river Oder, south of the Szczecin Lagoon and the Bay of Pomerania. The city is situated along the southwestern shore of Dąbie Lake, on both sides of the Oder and on several large islands between the western and eastern branches of the river. Szczecin is adjacent to the town of Police and is the urban centre of the Szczecin agglomeration, an extended metropolitan area that includes communities in the German states of Brandenburg and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
The city’s recorded history began in the 8th century as a Lechitic Pomeranian stronghold, built at the site of the Ducal Castle. In the 10th century, Szczecin first became part of the emerging Polish state.
In the following centuries it was the capital and one of main urban centres of the Duchy of Pomerania ruled by the local House of Griffin, which at various times was under the suzerainty of Poland, the Duchy of Saxony, the Holy Roman Empire and Denmark.
After the Treaty of Stettin in 1630, the city came under the control of Sweden and became in 1648 the capital of Swedish Pomerania until 1720, when it was acquired by the Kingdom of Prussia and then the German Empire.
Following World War II the city became part of Poland again in accordance with the Potsdam Agreement, resulting in a nearly complete population exchange.
To kill time and to have some exercise, we walked to the city centre, the harbour and back to the station. Just enough to have a quick idea of the city.
2021 Rail Tour of Imperial Europe
- POTSDAM 2021 | Schloss Sanssouci.
- 1945 Potsdam Conference’s Cecilienhof Palace.
- Potsdam 2021.
- REVIEW | InterContinental Berlin.
- BERLIN 2021 | Pergamon, ‘Das Panorama’.
- BERLIN 2021 | Humboldt Forum in the Berlin Palace.
- BERLIN 2021 | The Bundestag in the Reichstag.
- Berlin 2021.
- By train from Berlin to Gdansk via Szczecin.