Monday, 7 August 2017

Maize Maze to Lighthouse Bastorf

There are some enterprising farmers who get extra revenue from their tall-growing crops by creating mazes out of them and charging admission. These are great fun, so long as you are not asthmatic or have hayfever, and I suppose is at least not preying on the credulous like some Wiltshire farmers do by charging to see supposed 'crop circles'.

The most interesting maze I've seen is one just north of our village, which was in a hemp field. The hemp was not for smoking, but it did feel like you are inside a hippy's daydream.

More common are the mazes in fields of maize corn, which is the kind we came across whilst visiting a lighthouse on the Baltic coast.

The idea is; you donate 2€ per adult (4€ per family) for a fun way to get to the lighthouse (which you can see as a red speck in the distance) via the maze.

Or if you want to be boring, or are short of time like we were, you can wander round the edge of the field/maze. Nice sunflowers mind. I wonder if they were last year's crop, and they had a sunflower labyrinth?

The lighthouse is called Lichtturm Bastorf., and whilst it is topographically the highest lighthouse in Germany, it is also, at 20.8 m, the shortest lighthouse in Germany. Its construction was completed in 1878. It became a favourite day-trip destination for tourists up to the beginning of the 1960's, but was then classified as a military object and no-one but the lighthouse keeper was allowed to climb its 55 steps and admire the view from the top. After it was automated in 1979, it wasn't even visited by a lighthouse keeper. It fell into dereliction, but on the coming down of the Wall and the unification of Germany it was renovated (between 1991 and 1999) and can be visited again.

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