History & Culture
Originally German Riviera was a densly wooded area with hard to reach swampy territory and only a few settlements. This changed in the 12th century when Cistercian monks founded their monastery in Bad Doberan. They cultivated the region between Kühlungsborn and Rostock and their legacy endures to the present day.
After Reformation local sovereigns began to retake control of their lands. As a result many estates and princely manors with wonderful parks and gardens were established. (A visit to the many towns and villages in the hinterland is well worth while). Overseas connections via ports of Hanse cities Wismar and Rostock brought in further wealth, art and culture.
The region really began to thrive with the founding of the first sea resort at Heiligendamm in 1793 and the continuous expansion of further resorts; the main attraction to all visitors. Extending railways to link Bad Doberan and Heiligendamm in 1886 and further on to Brunshaupten and Arendsee in 1910 (merged to form Kühlungsborn in 1938) increased flow of visitors, necessitating further development of tourism infastructure.
Beginning of 20th century saw gorgeous promenades, numerous hotels and guest houses, concert gardens and bathhouses in the Baltic sea opening. The region began to acquire its unique combination of unspoiled nature mixed with a great variety of holiday opportunities.