Baltic Sea Ferries: Pearls of the Baltic & Scandinavia

Baltic Sea ferry Baltic Queen from Tallink Silja Line.
Baltic Sea ferry Baltic Queen from Tallink Silja Line.

Baltic Sea and Baltic States: Discover historical metropolises!

A trip to the Baltic Sea is highly recommended, especially for those interested in culture, because during the trip you will get to know numerous cities steeped in history. Baltic Sea ferry trips depart from several German ports; for example from Kiel or Rostock. Similar to the Nordland trips, the Baltic Sea offers you the advantage that you don’t have to travel long distances or fly to the port first.

Baltic Sea holidays are popular not only because of the interesting cities that are visited, but also because they are perfect for all holidaymakers. You can be on the Baltic Sea for up to 14 days or take advantage of one of the short trip offers with a duration of only three to four days. These usually run from Kiel or Rostock via Copenhagen in Denmark to Gothenburg in Sweden or Helsinki in Finland.

Baltic Sea Fähreoffers

You want to travel by ship in the Baltic Sea? Then take a look at our current Baltic Sea offers:


Best time to travel to the Baltic Sea

If you decide to take a trip to the Baltic Sea, it is best to plan it in the months from June to August. Daytime temperatures then average 20 degrees Celsius; in June and July you can expect up to twelve hours of sunshine a day. Nevertheless, despite the pleasant daytime temperatures, you should also take warm clothing with you. Because in the evening it can get quite chilly on deck. May and September are also good for a trip on the Baltic Sea. Both months offer the advantage that you can book your cruise quite cheaply. Baltic Sea trips are recommended from the end of April. But the trips across the Baltic Sea are also worthwhile all year round.


Ports in the Baltic Sea

Rostock Port ferry pier in Rostock harbour

Rostock Port ferry pier in Rostock harbour

Port of Rostock

The port of Rostock is often chosen as a starting point for a Baltic Sea trip. Here several Fähredepart daily to Denmark and Sweden. The Hanseatic city of Rostock has many sights to offer. It is only a few kilometres from the port to Rostock city centre. Taxis are available in sufficient quantity. In Rostock itself you should not miss out on a harbour tour or you can relax a little on the 150 metre wide beach in Warnemünde.

Port of St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg is one of the most popular holiday destinations, a Baltic Sea trip. The old tsar city, which is also often referred to as the “Venice of the North”, is the second largest city in Russia and boasts a wealth of sights. Russia’s “Gateway to the West” is the northernmost city in the world with over a million inhabitants and will certainly remain in your memory for a long time. One of the highlights is certainly the art museum “Hermitage”, which with more than 3.5 million exhibits is ten times as large as the Louvre in Paris. Other impressive photo opportunities in St. Petersburg include the Peter and Paul Fortress, the Neva Bridges and the Church of the Redeemer.

Port of Copenhagen

In Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark, not only a visit to the “Little Mermaid” but also to the amusement park Tivoli should be a must. This oldest amusement park in the world is located directly opposite the main railway station. If you are exploring Copenhagen on your own, you should know that Copenhagen is known as one of the most expensive cities in the world. A taxi ride from the port of Copenhagen to the city’s train station costs about 26 euros. You can use buses and trains for free if you have the Copenhagen Card. With this card you also get reduced admission to numerous museums in the city. One of the highlights in Copenhagen, besides the Little Mermaid, is certainly the Amalienborg Castle, where Queen Margaret II resides.

Port of Gothenburg

Walking from Gothenburg harbour to the city centre is quite tedious. It is easier to take the passenger ferry called Älvsnabben or the tram. However, you have to know your way around a bit to keep track of everything, because Gothenburg’s tram network is the largest in Northern Europe, with a total length of about 160 kilometres. Once you have reached the city centre, it is best to start your sightseeing at the Älvsborg fortress. From here you can easily reach all other interesting sights on foot. If you are travelling with children, you should definitely visit Liseberg amusement park in the city centre.
with its numerous attractions and rides. Classic sights such as numerous museums and an aquarium are also worth a visit in Gothenburg. An insider tip are the numerous coffee houses, which are almost as legendary as those in Vienna.

Port of Kiel

Besides Warnemünde and Hamburg, Kiel is the third well-known port in Germany from which Fähredepart to the north or east. Kiel is located directly at the Kiel Canal and is worth a trip especially during the “Kieler Woche”. If you are interested in Fähre, but also in seafaring in general, Kiel is the right place for you. In the city you will find many museums and monuments dedicated to seafaring. One of the most famous monuments and a popular photo motif is the Naval Memorial Laboe. It was built for fallen German marines. It is worth climbing up to the 85 metre high monument, because from the top you have a great panoramic view over the Baltic Sea.

Port of Stockholm

You want to experience pure Sweden feeling? Then Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, is the place for you! Here you can expect not only a typical Scandinavian architecture, but also an impressive museum landscape. In Stockholm, there are several harbours: the harbour called Stadsgarden is located in the immediate proximity of the oldtown, while the free harbour “Frihamnen” is located a little outside. From here it is about five kilometers to the old town. For a taxi you pay about 15 Euro. In 2013, Stockholm was voted the most popular destination during a trip to the Baltic Sea, leaving even the Norwegian fjords and St. Petersburg behind. The reason is certainly the unique approach through the spectacular Stockholm archipelago, which contains about 24,000 islands. But also the huge offer of sightseeings in Stockholm contributes of course to the fact that Stockholm is one of the most popular destinations of the Baltic Sea. Don’t miss a visit to the Vasa or Abba museums, and the massive Royal Palace is definitely worth a visit.

Port of Tallinn

Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, is described by many as the most beautiful city on a Baltic trip. The highlight here is the imposing Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. Located on the cathedral hill, the building is unmistakable thanks to its onion domes and is a popular photo motif. But it is not the only sight in Tallinn. The entire old town is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and is well worth seeing. Here you will find numerous bars and restaurants that are perfect for stopping off. I like the fact that the old town of Tallinn is within sight of the harbour. So you don’t have to take a longer journey and can explore the city on your own. Be sure to wear comfortable and flat shoes, because the Old Town of Tallinn is characterized by cobblestones.

Port of Helsinki

Finland’s capital Helsinki is definitely worth a visit. One of the most popular shore excursions in Helsinki is the boat trip, during which you can also get to know the impressive archipelago landscape. You will already see these more than 300 offshore islands when your Fähre enters the harbour of Helsinki. The landmark of the city, the Helsinki Cathedral, is also a popular photo motif. Another highlight is the mighty Suomenlinna fortress in front of Helsinki, which you can explore on a shore excursion during your trip to the Baltic Sea. By the way, in the harbour of Helsinki there are many berths for ferries, whereby the distance to the centre varies strongly.

Port of Gdansk

Gdansk is probably the best known port city on the Baltic coast of Poland. The port of Gdansk is located in the industrial port of Gdynia. Unfortunately, it is about 30 kilometres from here to the centre of Gdansk. If you haven’t booked a guided shore excursion, you can easily get to the centre by taxi, as there are plenty of them waiting at the harbour. A trip from Gdynia to Gdansk and back, including a three-hour wait, costs about 70 euros. A cheaper alternative is the SKM light rail.


TOP 12 destinations & sights in the Baltic Sea

The Little Mermaid in Copenhagen

Inspired by the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen is probably one of the most famous photo motifs in all of Scandinavia.

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Tallinn

The Alexander Nevski Cathedral in Tallinn is not only a dreamlike photo motif from the outside. You should especially not miss the impressive interiors.

Curonian Spit

A walk on the famous Curonian Spit an absolute must. When the weather is nice you can even swim in the Baltic Sea. The 98 kilometres long peninsula offers you not only a fantastic nature, but also some worthwhile sights. The Thomas Mann Cultural Centre in Nida is highly recommended, as is the Maritime Museum in Smiltynė.

Suommenlina Fortress in Helsinki

Suommenlina is a fortress complex that is often offered as a day trip. After a short Fähre ride you can reach it from Helsinki. The island on which the fortress is located invites you to take long walks. By the way, the last Fähre back to Helsinki leaves in the night at 2 o’clock.

Peterhof near St. Petersburg

Not only St. Petersburg itself will enchant you, also the nearby Peterhof is worth a visit. This is one of the most beautiful baroque buildings in the world and is surrounded by idyllic parks. The castle complex is located about 30 kilometres from St. Petersburg and has been on the UNESCO cultural heritage list since 1991.

Vasa Museum Stockholm

Stockholm is known for its extensive museums, with the Vasa Museum certainly being one of the most famous. Here you can marvel at the world’s only preserved ship from the 17th century. The museum was opened in 1990 and is located on the island of Djurgården. Several times a day you can take part in guided tours of the museum. However, these are only offered in English.

Visby on Gotland

Visby is a town on the Swedish island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea and is best known for its well-preserved city wall with its defence towers. Throughout the old town you will find countless picturesque little houses; here you will definitely feel transported to another time. The medieval Hanseatic city also offers a botanical garden and a cathedral worth seeing.

Riga, the “Pearl of the Baltic”.

Anyone who has visited the Latvian capital Riga will quickly understand why it is called the “Pearl of the Baltic”. Centuries-old wooden houses can be found here, as well as imposing churches and unique art nouveau buildings. Moreover, Riga is known as the capital of Baltic gastronomy; you should definitely try the regional specialties.

Neva Bridges St. Petersburg

The Castle Bridge over the Neva is only one of more than 350 bridges in the city of St.Petersburg. Especially at night, when the bridge is opened, it is a great photo motif. During the day, however, the bridge, which crosses the Great Neva, is used by both cars and pedestrians. This bridge connects Vasilyevsky Island with Admiralty Island.

Uspenski Cathedral Helsinki

The Uspenski Cathedral in the Finnish capital Helsinki is not only impressive because of its unique architecture. But the church services that take place in the church are also a unique experience. The church with its 13 golden domes can be seen from far away.

Archipelago off Helsinki

You should definitely book a boat trip through the archipelago off Helsinki, because this will remain in your memory for a long time. The largest archipelago in the world lies off the coast of Finland. Not only is nature impressive here, but the landscape is also characterised by countless lighthouses, old wooden houses and stone churches.

Liseberg in Gothenburg

The amusement park Liseberg, located in the Swedish city of Gothenburg, is not only a worthwhile destination for families with children. This amusement park has been around since 1923. Here you will not only find the world’s steepest wooden roller coaster, but also the 60-meter-high Ferris wheel, which attracts most visitors.


Questions and answers about the Baltic Sea trip

Which shipping companies offer Baltic Sea ferries?

Baltic Sea ferries are offered by several well-known shipping companies. For example, you can choose the Stena Line fleet or set sail with the TT-Line ferries, Finnlines, FRS Baltic, Hansa Destinations, DFDS or Scandlines. You can book your Fähre directly here with us or with the respective shipping companies.

What is the climate in the Baltic Sea?

While the southern part of the Baltic Sea is dominated by the temperate climate, the eastern part of the Baltic Sea is dominated by the so-called continental climate. A holiday at the Baltic Sea is not recommended in the winter months; the months from May to September are considered the best time to travel. Of course, you should bear in mind that the Baltic Sea, with a total area of 413,000 square kilometres, is the largest inland sea in Europe and that there are of course regional differences according to its extent. While the climate in Denmark can still be described as maritime, you should pack warmer clothes the further east your journey takes you.

What clothes should I take with me?

On a trip on the Baltic Sea your suitcase will certainly be a bit heavier than on a Mediterranean or Caribbean trip. As mentioned before, especially the evenings can be quite cool even in the summer months, especially since there is always some wind on board. Don’t forget your umbrella either, because discovering the most beautiful Baltic Sea metropolises in pouring rain is not much fun.

Is the Baltic Sea Urlab possible and recommendable with baby or toddler?

Of course you can also plan a Baltic Sea holiday with baby or toddler. Such a trip to the Baltic Sea should even be the first choice for young parents, because the little one is spared the stress of the flight or a possible jet lag. On the Fähre there are often also play facilities for children and special food offers for small holidaymakers. So there’s nothing wrong with a sea voyage by Fähre that lasts only a few hours.

Which excursions are recommended on the Baltic Sea trip?

No matter which port is visited on your trip: Worthwhile excursions are offered in every city. The classic is certainly the city tours, which are offered in various forms. A city tour by bus is also highly recommended for physically impaired people. If you prefer to be more active, you can also choose to explore the city by bike. A guide will take you to the highlights of each city.

Depending on which variant of the Baltic Sea trip you choose, you will get to know the different metropolises of the Baltic and Scandinavia during this trip.

Can I organize excursions myself?

The excursions offered are often not quite cheap. For this reason, many holidaymakers decide to explore the respective destination on their own during their Baltic Sea tour. Of course, this is only possible if the port is centrally located. Often you have to take a taxi or a tram to the city centre. If you don’t know your way around the city, it can be difficult to find the right line. You are better advised to join an organized excursion, because then you don’t have to worry about anything.

Is the swell on the Baltic Sea very strong?

Some swell is certainly part of the experience on a ferry crossing. However, if you regularly get seasick on small excursion steamers, that doesn’t mean it will happen to you on a ferry. From Poland in the direction of Lithuania, on the other hand, it can happen that wind force 7 prevails, depending on the season. Then the waves whip against the bow of the Fähre and you clearly notice the swaying. If you have forgotten your travel sickness tablets at home, no problem: just ask the ship’s staff, because these tablets are part of the standard equipment on every ship. Above a certain wind force, caution bags are also laid out on the ferry. Basically, all modern Fähreare equipped with stabilizers, which compensate for the swell. The bigger the ferry, the less you feel of the waves. So if you get seasick easily, you should rather choose one of the bigger Fähreif in doubt. If you can decide on a cabin, you should if possible choose one of the cabins in the middle of the ship and avoid bow or stern. Last but not least, of course, the route plays a decisive role. While in the Caribbean or in the Mediterranean Sea swell is almost impossible, it can become quite uncomfortable on the North Sea or in the Atlantic.

Do I need a passport or is an identity card sufficient for the trip to the Baltic Sea?

As a rule, an identity card is sufficient for a Baltic Sea holiday. However, make sure that it is still valid for at least six months at the end of your trip. However, special entry requirements apply to the Russian Federation. German citizens are required to have a visa here. So if you are planning a vacation or transit through Russia, you must present a valid visa.

Basically it is recommended that you have a valid passport as well as your identity card. Whether this is needed also depends on your destination.


Our conclusion to the Baltic Sea vacation

If you are planning a cruise for the first time, the Baltic Sea is the ideal starting point and destination for you. Experience exciting and historic cities like St. Petersburg, Tallinn, Riga or Copenhagen.


Baltic Sea Map

On this map you get an overview of the Baltic Sea as a holiday destination.

Baltic Sea Map


Baltic Sea Ferries: Pearls of the Baltic & Scandinavia Experiences & Travelogues

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