I stumbled upon Ost and Berg Dievenow while driving back from Cammin Stadt. We had just finished visiting both the Centrum Słowian i Wikingów (Slavs and Vikings Center) in Wollin and the larger city of Cammin all in one day. We had taken a detour to see Soltin just before the sun had set. I felt like we were racing the clock to document one of my family’s ancestral villages. It was that evening that I took a different route back to our Airbnb in Wisełka, formerly known as Neuendorf.
Rather than driving back down and through Wollin, we headed north on DW107 to Dziwnówek, or Klein Dievenow. It wasn’t a place that was on our radar to see. In fact, I hadn’t heard of Dievenow before. Passing through that stretch of road on DW102 from Dziwnówek to Dziwnow, I was surprised by a pirate ship on the side of the road. I hadn’t enough time to take it in and process what I saw. I wanted to turn around, but was pressed for time. On my way to cross the Most zwodzony lift bridge, an amusement park caught my eye. There were roller coasters and rides. I also saw the crow’s nest of a boat somewhere on the side of the road, though I still have no idea what that place was called; after looking for hours online, it turned out to be the Wedzarnia Mini Zoo Bar (Ogród Bosmana mini ZOO Międzywodzie). It looked like a charming little place to pay a visit to the following day. As the sun dipped down and we arrived back in Wisełka, my wife and I spent some time conversing with our host who travels the world as a classically trained violinist.
The next day, we took our host’s advice and went to see the beach in Wisełka, the cliffs of Gosań (formerly Gosan-Berg), and the bison preserve (Zagroda Pokazowa Żubrów). We made several other stops to see villages where around where my family originated (my Mildebrath/Milbroth side lived in Swantuß, worked in Pritter, and attended church in Kolzow) before calling it a night and heading for Dziwnówek. I couldn’t remember exactly where it was, and Google Maps didn’t do well acquiring a signal. We found ourselves in Heidebrink (Międzywodzie) by mistake and enjoyed the evening there for dinner and sightseeing. However, my curiosity got the better of me, and I was thoroughly intrigued with the idea of exploring the place with the lights and the ships that I had happened upon the previous day.
By the time we had eaten and walked back to our rental car, it was past ten o’clock and the sun was fast disappearing. We drove to the Ost Dievenow and parked the car near the light-up boat statue and ventured along the Dziwna channel, admiring the view. One of the roads parallel to the main street, Adama Mickiewicza, was filled with restaurants and shops. From retracing my steps on Google Maps, it looks like the white building with the blue trim and porch may not have existed in 2013 but had to have been built by 2017. The streetlamps look different as well. Within a few short years, it looks as if the entire town began investing in infrastructure.
Walking along the voivodeship road (droga wojewódzka) DW102, we sauntered along past the Pensjonat Restauracja BOSS, a pension and restaurant. The church, Kościół pw. św. Józefa, was just up the street from there. By this point, we were in the west side of Berg Dievenow. We made it to Port Dziwnów where the ships docked. They took people on them for sunset cruises to the lift bridge. (For more information, see the website for Rejsy Statkami Dziwnów. The blue boat is the one that advertises evening cruises.) Then, we walked back to our car.
Numerous buildings of varying architectural interests stood out to me. Some had roofs that resembled those of manor houses–a gambrel roof. Others mixed and matched Victorian with brick and mortar. Modern architecture met subdued Art Nouveau balconies. Towards the end of our walk, I noticed the sad remains of the Holiday House Baltic (Dom Wczasowy Bałtyk) and the dilapidated historic Hotel Silvana.
We would briefly drive back through the following day to get gas and quickly see the boats during the daytime before continuing our journey to Hoff.
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