Carolinensiel (Nds)


Inseln & Halligen (SH)


Wind of change and historic
 cultural landscapes

Life on the borderline between 
land and sea

Landscapes are changing. These changes are due to environmental influences and, last but not least, Man’s labor, e.g. his numerous efforts to make a living. The Wadden Sea area is a perfect example of this natural and cultural interaction. The beautiful ”sluice harbor” village of Carolinensiel, now situated inland, was in former times a busy seaport. At its founding, the further south located former harbors, Alt- and Neufunnixsiel, lost their importance. This caused the inhabitants to seek new ways of livelihood, just like the inhabitants of Carolinensiel nowadays. Our aim is to preserve its historic cultural landscape and heritage for future generations and make sure the area does not lose its character in the process. This needs a common vision.

There is a word which precisely characterizes the North Frisian coastal area – the word is diversity. Divers are the forms of landscapes lying in close proximity: geest and marsh islands, Halligen, river and sea marshes, wadden areas, remnant swamp areas, outer-sands and tidal gullies dominate the landscape. The constant effort of the North Sea to reclaim cultivated marsh land and transfer it into wadden areas and the firm intention of the coastal inhabitants to protect their land against the sea does not only dominate the landscape but also the local population. Just recently the traces were still to be found in their faces, their houses, their customs, their traditional clothing and their language and dialects. Almost unchanged remains the constant struggle with natural forces. During the winter floodings (land submerged) the inhabitants of the Halligen are in particular repeatedly reminded of how life was managed on the coastal shores in former times despite extreme environmental conditions. Nevertheless, they stay anyhow – there is no better way of demonstrating the power which binds man and marsh.