You should definitely visit museum-submarine Wilhelm Bauer when in northern Germany! In Bremerhaven, you have the unique opportunity to visit a faithfully restored submarine from the Second World War. Dive into a totally unknown world because submarines are really fascinating! By the way, this Type XXI submarine is the last remaining model of the “Wilhelm Bauer” that can be visited, all other submarines from that time were scrapped or sunk. Although submarines have had their tactical advantages, in wartime they were often iron coffins for the crew. Bremerhaven offers museums with a huge focus on maritime and migration.
a Submarine made in Germany
The museum-submarine Wilhelm Bauer stationed in Bremerhaven, today a technology museum, celebrated its launching on January 13, 1945. This was the day it first came out of the shipyard and into the water. This exact submarine was built by Blohm & Voss Hamburg. This shipyard was founded in 1877 and is still active in shipbuilding today.
At that time, during the Second World War, Blohm&Voss focused entirely on the construction of type VII X and XXI submarines (the latter corresponds to the make of the Wilhelm Bauer Technical Museum in Bremerhaven) and produced a total of 224 units for the German Navy/War Navy. The workers at the shipyard were, at the time, mainly forced labourers and prisoners from the nearby Neuengamme concentration camp. After several air raids on the shipyard, the shipyard was closed on December 31, 1945, by order of the British military administration. As can be read on Wikipedia, Blohm+Voss pays annually into the compensation fund for forced labourers. But back to today’s museum, and what you can expect during a visit.
Inside the museum-submarine Wilhelm Bauer
First of all, you can see an original submarine. Empty torpedo tubes of the torpedo plant, for launching torpedoes capable of detonation, catch your eye immediately upon entering the museum ship. Four of them can be observed, of course without cargo. Also otherwise the submarine is, how does one imagine it differently, quite narrow. When visiting the Museum of Technology U-Boat Wilhelm Bauer, you should be physically relatively fit, and not carry large bags or other ballast, as you have to climb through several hatches. It is just very much in original condition to give us visitors a little insight into the life and work in the submarine at that time. Below is a short video of my visit to the Class XXI submarine “Wilhelm Bauer” in Bremerhaven, including some photos. With such a low entrance fee a visit is worthwhile in any case. And, you don’t get seasick at all, nor do you have to fear for your life!
If you are interested in the technology of the so-called “electric boats” of type XXI of Blohm&Voss, you should have a look at this detailed Wikipedia entry: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Type_XXI_submarine.
Blohm+Voss still builds ships today, mainly container ships as well as mega yachts. Well-known models from the shipyards of B+V in Hamburg are the battleship Bismarck (1939), the Gorch Fock (1933&1958), and the hovercraft catamaran Corsair (1989), as well as the two yachts Lady Moura (1990) or Eclipse (2009).
U-Boat Museum-Submarine Wilhelm Bauer
Address: Hans-Scharoun-Platz 1, 27568 Bremerhaven
Opening hours: daily 10-19 h
Entrance fee: 2,50 Euro for adults