Germany » Elbe Seitenkanal | Germany

The canal was built during the Cold War as a link from Hamburg to the Mittellandkanal (MLK)

Elbe Seitenkanal | Germany: Characteristics & Overview

Rating of waterway

Length of waterway: 115 km
Number of locks: 2
Lock dimensions: 105 x 12
Max. depth: 2.70
Max. headroom: 5.25
Degree of difficulty: Demanding
Requirements: Boating license essential
Character of waterway: no rating
Profile of waterway: Main waterway
Facilities groundside: Hardly existent

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Waterway has access to:

Elbe River | Germany
Mittellandkanal | Germany

The Elbe link Canal, a politically waterway
One year after the Mittellandkanal was opened; the Second World War started and soon after it finally ended, Germany was parted by the Iron Curtain. This meant that Hamburg was cut off the inland waterways freight traffic and the big industrial centers of the western country. Therefore, planning for the Elbe-Seitenkanal started in order to join the Elbe and the MLK on West German territories. This didn’t only make sense for political reasons, one could this way also avoid quite a big stretch of the Elbe and its continually fluctuating water level.

Even though the canal passes mostly through the heath of Lüneburg, one doesn’t see much of it because of the high causeys. If you would like to discover some of it, you can hire a bike at the marina of Uelzen. Uelzen itself is proud of its famous train station, reconverted by Hundertwasser.

Places nearby :

Artlenburg an der Elbe / Samtgemeinde Bad Bevensen / Uelzen, die Stadt mit dem Bahnhof von Handertwasser