The Isle of Usedom, located close to the border to Poland, is one of Germany's major holiday and recreation areas due to its beaches, its natural beauty and a number of elegant seaside towns.
Usedom's long sandy beaches
Usedom is only a three-hour car drive from the German capital Berlin. Once you get there you can enjoy sandy beaches that stretch some 40 kilometers along the Baltic Sea coast.
The historic Ahlbeck pier features a beautiful clock in Art Nouveau style. The pier itself was completed in 1899 and is the only one along the entire Baltic Sea coast whose original structure has been preserved.
The Ahlbeck Hof, built in 1890, is a five-star hotel that has hosted emperors, politicians and actors on their seaside holidays.
Usedom is also a big draw for artists. The painter Otto Niemeyer-Holstein lived and worked on the island for more than 50 years.
Usedom's coastline has been an inspiration to many artists
His combination home and studio set on the narrowest part of the island is now a memorial site.Perhaps Usedom's most famous artist was the German-American painter and caricaturist Lyonel Feininger. Since 2009, the ''Feininger Bicycle Tour'' has been taking riders on a journey to forty different motifs that appear in some of the artist's works.
In addition to the coastline, the hinterland features nature reserves, castles, lakes and historic villages.
Editor: Sue Cox