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Flensburg is located in the far north of Germany, near the Danish border. The city's location is its largest source of income: Many Danes cross the border, as a lot of goods are cheaper in Germany than in Denmark. Flensburg therefore also has many large shopping centers. In addition to the shops in the pedestrian city center, there are large shopping centers outside the city: Fördepark, Poetsch, Scandinavian Park and Citti Park.
But Flensburg is not just about shopping; there is much more to see and do in the city. Flensburg has for example no less than twenty churches. One of these churches is the Pfarrkirche St Marien 'schmerzhafte Mutter', which was built in 1899. It is a Roman Catholic Church, while the other Kirche St Marien is Lutheran. There is a fun anecdote about the latter. At the beginning of the eighteenth century, when the church was under construction, a neighbor – merchant Thomsen – opposed the bell tower. He did not fancy the sound of clanging bells next door. He got Christian Friedrich IV, the king at the time, on his site and construction was suspended. Only after both the merchant and the king had died, construction of the bell tower could be resumed.
Flensburg is a maritime city and you can best experience this connection with the water by making a trip in one of the ferries or excursion boats. We recommend making a trip with the Alexandria saloon steamer that is over a hundred years old. There are regular departures for trips that take approximately one and a half hour. Nearby the harbor lies the Museumswerft (Shipyard Museum) where old vessels are exhibited. Old vessels are also restored here to its former glory. It is not just a museum where you can look at things; there are also workshops for children and adults to learn more about what it takes to restore historic vessels.
Flensburg's history (including the city's maritime past) is highlighted in Museumsberg Flensburg, which – as already indicated by its name – lies on a hill in the city center. On Fridays admission is free. The Naturwissenschaftliches Museum und Eiszeit-Haus is always free. The Phänomenta interactive science museum is fun for children as they can conduct their own experiments here.
At about 6 kilometers northeast of Flensburg lies an impressive castle, Schloss Glucksburg. The white castle is Germany's largest water castle and used to be the residence of the dukes of Schleswig-Holstein (and for some time also the Danish Royal Family). It was built in the sixteenth century at the site of a former monastery. Parts of that monastery were used for the castle's foundation. In the interior, Dutch tapestries and beautiful stucco ceilings catch the eye. Also note the coat of arms above the entrance showing the letters GGGMF, which stands for 'Gott Gebe Glück Mit Frieden' (God Gives Happiness and Freedom).
As Flensburg focuses on Danes who visit the city for shopping, there is no shortage of parking facilities. Around the center there are large parking lots and garages where you can park your rental car.
Flensburg-Schäferhaus Airport is located just west of the city. From the city center you can easily get to the airport by rental car. First you take the Westerallee or the Marienallee. Both streets connect with the Am Friedenshügel road, which leads to the airport. The way is clearly signposted.