Mud in Germany

Mud in Germany

The #unique landscape of the Wadden Sea in #Germany hosts a habitat unknown anywhere else, and is home to over 10,000 species. Squish around in the mud and you'll see all sorts of critters! Socks you don't care about ruining are recommended. Mud not your thing? Stay #active in other ways with a sail, kite-board, swim, kayak, or even a trip to see some #cute rescued seals.


There’s a squelching noise coming from my feet. At least, I assume it’s from my feet. I can’t see them anymore, and in their place is just a runny mess of brown mud with little bubbles escaping.

The Wadden Sea, Germany

I’m out on the mudflats near the shore of a town called Norden in the north of Germany. The mud has been revealed by the tide that has pulled the water away and so I have ventured out with a National Park guide to see what we can find. 

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Guided Tour in Wadden Sea

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 Wadden Sea, Germany
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She pushes a spade down past the soft surface and brings up a pile of mud. Sifting through it we find worms and crabs and all sorts of other small critters.

No turning back now

This is the Wadden Sea, a unique landscape that hosts a habitat found nowhere else in the world. More than 10,000 animal and plant species live around these coastal wetland environments that change constantly throughout the day with the movement of the tides.

The Wadden Sea is the largest unbroken system of inter-tidal sand and mud flats on the planet and it’s changing in the long term as well. 

The Wadden Sea is the largest unbroken system of inter-tidal sand and mud flats on the planet

Geologically, it’s an extremely young area and has only been like this for about 10,000 years. The winds and the tides are gradually reshaping it with constant pressure from every angle.

Geologically, this area is relatively young

I’m wearing socks, on the advice of the ranger, to protect my feet and they have turned a brown grey colour. I can feel the silt inside them as I step. Once we get back to the shoreline and I scramble up some rocks, I try to wash them. Mud pours out but they don’t change colour. These once white socks might need to be left behind.

The mud-less portion of the Wadden Sea

You don’t need to get as dirty as this, though, to experience the Wadden Sea (although it is highly recommended!). The town of Norden is a busy holiday destination with a lot of accommodation. It’s popular with those who see the water as recreation; sailors, kite surfers, swimmers and kayakers.

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 Norden, Germany
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A seaside sunset

But Norden also offers a lot for those who see the water for its biological riches.

Visiting the Wadden Sea at Norden

There are the mudflats, of course, for those who want to see the importance of the region close up. For birdwatchers, the area around Norden and the Wadden Sea more generally provide viewpoints to see the millions of migrating birds that stop here to rest during their journeys.

The area provides viewpoints to see the millions of migrating birds that stop here to rest

The popular ‘Seehund Station’ is a centre near the coastline of Norden that rescues and looks after injured or orphaned seals.

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Seehund Station

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Experts nurse them back to health and then release them back into the sea when they are strong enough to look after themselves.

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Nursing the seals so they can go back out to sea

Although there is human development along the coastline, the most important areas of natural significance have been well protected for everyone to enjoy.

Where is the Seehund Station?

The Seehund Station (where you can also organize the mudflat tours) is located at:

Dörper Weg 24, 26506, Norden, Germany

You can see it on a map here.

Where to stay to visit the Seehund Station

I stayed at the DJH Youth Hostel in Norddeich which has nice rooms and an excellent position right near the beach.

Top tip

Norden and Norddeich have a lovely relaxing atmosphere so why not spend a day or two at the beach here.

Time Travel Turtle was supported by DB Bahn, the German National Tourist Board and Youth Hostels in Germany but the opinions, over-written descriptions and bad jokes are his own.

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