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A small peninsula, Westerplatte protrudes out into the Baltic, welcoming incoming ships and ferries. But on September 1, 1939, this wooded strip of land is where the Second World War began, when the German battleship Schleswig-Holstein began shelling a small Polish garrison stationed there. After a valiant stand, the Poles ran out of food and ammunition and surrendered on September 7th. Today, a 25m tall monument marks that fateful spot and its blank, thoughtful face reminds visitors of the tragedy that began on that patch of land. The monument rests upon an equally tall mound and is visible from a good distance. In the surrounding woods there are some ruins from the battle, as well as other artifacts from WW2, such as preserved tanks. Although it is a bit outside the city, the significance of this place has a powerful draw and people come from all over the world to see this infamous spot.
Editor & Gdansk Local