flag coat of arms
Stadtflagge Wappen
Map Lage von Borkum in Deutschland
base data
Land of the Federal Republic: Lower Saxony
district: Empty
geographical situation:
Coordinates: 53° 35 ' 17 " N, 6° 40 ' 11 " O
53° 35 ' 17 " N, 6° 40 ' 11 " O
height: 6 m and. NN
surface: 30.74 km ²
inhabitants: 5.513 (30.June 2005)
Population density: 180 Einwohner/km ²
postal zip code: 26757
preselection: 0 49 22
Kfz characteristics: LER
municipality key: 03 4 57 002
of the city administration:
New STR. 1
26757 Borkum
E-Mail address:

Borkum is the westernmost and alsoabout 37 km ² the largest of the sieved Ostfriesi islands. It is appropriate north for the Ems delta, the Netherlands coast more near as the German mainland. Borkum has about 5,500 inhabitants. The neighbour islands are Rottumeroog (the Netherlands) in the west as well as Juist and the Kachelot - Plate inThe east.

Tideunabhängige driving connections to the mainland exist outer harbour with Emden - and with Eemshaven (the Netherlands). In addition exists on the island an airfield for more more sport and smaller passenger airlines (line flight to Emden).

The island and the adjacent Watt belong to the national park Wattenmeer of Lower Saxony. Borkum is since 1830 bathing resortand has four guarded bath beaches.

Table of contents

history Borkums

the first documentary mentions of the island Borkum take place in the year 1227as Borkna and at the 11. September 1398 as Borkyn. Starting from the end 14. Century Borkum is governed by the ostfriesischen chieftains. Starting from 1464 the counts of East Frisia take over the regency.

After the death of prince Carl Edzard, the last male representative of the house Cirksena, falls East Frisia, and thus Borkum, 1744 due to the 1694 of emperor Leopold I. the Kufürsten of Brandenburg Friedrich IIITH, late king Friedrich I. from Prussia, gave claim at Prussia. In peacetime from Tilsit Borkum from 1807 becomes to 1810 Part the Kingdom of Holland and then until 1813 part of the Empire of France. With the end of the wars of liberation 1813 Borkum drops back at Prussia . 1815 are already assigned the island by the Viennese congress to the Kingdom of Hanover. As this with the Prager peace of 1866 , fall East Frisia and concomitantly Borkum Prussia end.

1902 become Borkum by emperors Wilhelm II. the status of a sea-fortress lent. The island will provide the railway facilities of the Borkumer Kleinbahn with gun positions and shelters, grows up from a route distance of approximately 8 kilometersover 40 kilometers and are zweispurig developed.

After the Second World War the Netherlands desire among other things as war remuneration the entire Ems delta including the island Borkum. The port of Emden should be drained in the course of these Annexion. The plans failed because of the Westallierten, those in the facethe erstarkenden Soviet Union West Germany not further to weaken wanted (see also Netherlands annex ion plans after the Second World War).

Since 1946 Borkum belongs to the Land of the Federal Republic Lower Saxony.

from the stranded goods to the tourism

the island applies during the Hans time as escape place of Piraten.

With that Counts of East Frisia lie the island inhabitants in the constant controversy regarding the payment of portions of stranding goods, which almost represent the only source of income of the Borkumer at this time.

In 17. Century mostly brings whale-catching, those to many Borkumern on Netherlands whale-catching ships as successfulCaptains and harpoon are active, a certain prosperity in. Many street names on Borkum, in addition, from Walfischkiefern manufactured fences (the imposanteste “whale fence” covers the former house of Roelof Gerrits Meyer, which hunted approximately 270 whales with its crew on 42 travels) and similar Relikte witnessof this time. In 18. Century however diminishes whale-catching first and due to the Dutch-English naval warfare is finally adjusted. In the consequence the poverty begins on the island, and many inhabitants leave their homeland. The number of inhabitants reaches against 1811 a lowest point ofapproximately 400 persons.

Blick vom alten Leuchtturm Richtung Westen
View of the old lighthouse direction the west
Hauptstrand mit Kurhalle am Meer
main beach with cure-resounds the first

holiday-makers, mainly wealthy citizens at the sea after the short Intermezzo of the napoleonischen rule in the time of 1810 to 1813 comes starting from 1834 from Emden, on the island, and 10Years later, 1844, are established the first bath mechanism, one began, to discover the tourism than source of income.

Since that time the number of the tourists, who select Borkum as vacation, recovery and a cure goal, rose continuously. While 1850, when one began with the registration of the holiday-makers, still252 visitors were counted, were it 2003 about 270.000.

Borkum took a top place in the context of the bath Antisemitismus in such a way specified for a long time 1933 ago with the Ausgrenzung of Jewish guests. Already before the First World War anti-Semitic incidents were to be registered. These accumulated themselves, as of 1920„the Borkum minister “and later „realm speakers of the NSDAP “Ludwig Münchmeyer with aggressive inflammatory speeches arose. In the anti-Semitic „Borkum song “, which intonierte the Kurkapelle with approval of the local council, it meant:

For Borkum, the North Sea most beautiful Zier,
remain pure you by Jews,
leave Rosenthal and Levinsohn
in Norderney alone.
Historical navigation mark“Large Kaap”, island Borkum

with openly to look carried Antisemitismus won Borkum „volume-gravel-CH-national “guests and used race agitation in the competition against the seaside resort Norderney.

emergence of the island

Borkum is from originally two, still 1863 by a Priel separated islands, the westand east country, grown together. The Tüskendör (“occasionally”) indicates today the old seam. The two island parts exhibit clearly the hufeisenförmige shape of the concentrically running dune chains , which are open to the Randzel Watt. The inside the dune elbow is with eingedeichten marches out mostly grassland and salt meadows forwardsthe lake dyke filled out. The vertex of the dune chains of the west country is cut of the sea surf and must be protected with concrete walls and Buhnen. In the west the Greune Stee (“green place”) is appropriate for the island, an expanded sump forest, which pulled through in dry places of dunes is.

city Borkum

view of the new lighthouse of the city toward the south
Alter Leuchtturm auf Borkum
age lighthouse on Borkum
Neuer Leuchtturm auf Borkum
new lighthouse on Borkum
Rettungsschwimmer der DLRG am Badestrand
rescue float of the DLRG at the edge of bathing

the city Borkum are belonged the only place on the island and to the district empty in Lower Saxony.It has as nationally recognized North Sea therapeutic bath numerous health resort facilities. In the local centre of Borkum seasonal Verkehrssperren apply to private motor vehicles (usually in the middle of March to at the end of of Octobers and about three weeks to the turn of the year). In these times travels are permitted only with a special permission.

Work on []


  • first electrical lighthouse of Germany

in the years 1887 to 1889 “small lighthouse Borkum” established, often also only briefly “the electrical one” mentioned, was the first lighthouse built for the electrical enterprise in Germany. It was deactivated in the summer 2003, there itselfthe driving water within the range of the Ems delta by sand misalignment had changed.

  • First Küstenfunkstelle of the world

between Borkum and the light ship “Borkumriff” (until 1988 approx. northwest of 30 km embodied) in the year 1900 the first official regular radio service of the world was furnished to the island as ship reporting service. Besides could passing ships concerning this lake of telegrams deliver.

  • First successful rocket starts on 2 km height

to 19. /20. Decembers 1934 were started two copies of the a2 - rocket, called “max” and “Moritz”, in the proximity of the east beacon. The liquid-fuel rockets developed by the rocket pioneer who ago by brown were world-wide first,the one height of over 2 km reached; they put the foundation-stone for the later large rockets.

  • Largest youth hostel of Europe

in the buildings of the former naval sailor shank training's group of the German Federal Armed Forces, which were into the 1990er years an important naval base and a largest employer of the island, operates that German youth harsh suppl. work since October 1996 the youth hostel “at the Wattenmeer”. With 530 beds and one approximately twenty hectares large areas is it the largest in Europe.

  • Swimming pool “tidal country”

since summer 2005 gives it to swimming pool on Borkum. This concerns the converted old swimming pool(formerly the largest sea water wave indoor swimming pool in Europe), now however no swimming pool with artificial waves, but a modern “leisure time swimming pool” and/or. “Fun bath”. (Opening: 19. August 2005)

  • Only still claimant double-railed narrow-gauge railway of Germany

on Borkum operates a steeped in tradition Kleinbahn on 900mm-Spur from the port to the town centre. The Borkumer Kleinbahn is the only one stillclaimant double-railed narrow-gauge railway of Germany.

  • Most northwest land point of Germany

at the beach promenade between the north bath and the youth bath lies the most northwest land point of Germany. It is marked and with information boards provided by a symbolic border post.

On Borkum one greets oneself in the youth with the word “Öye


  • franc Bajohr: “Our hotel is Jew-free”. Bath Antisemitismus in 19. and 20. Century. FIBU 15796, Frankfurt/M 2003 ISBN 3-596-15796-X

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