Lake-hopping by motorboat
Thanks to its huge expanses of water, the Lusatian Lakeland is a paradise for amateur sailors and boat enthusiasts. Senftenberg, Geierswald and Partwitz lakes are already connected by navigable canals and provide the perfect setting for extensive motorboat tours.
Tom faces into the wind and wipes some spray from his forehead as he keeps a keen lookout at the bow. “All clear,” the eight-year-old calls to his dad, who is at the helm. Mum quickly puts the picnic basket away and enjoys the views of the shore. The family head off in their motorboat from the Hafencamp campsite in Grosskoschen towards Senftenberg marina. Their boat, the ‘Lamir’, has a 15 hp motor which means it can be used without a licence. “It’s easy as long as you take care and use your common sense,” says Manuela Zahn, who hires out motorboats, among other things, at the Hafencamp campsite. Before starting a trip, guests are given a theoretical and practical briefing. How is the boat operated? What are the rules on the water? Which way am I going? She points to the linked lakes on a large map: starting at Lake Senftenberg, then passing though Koschen canal and on to Lake Geierswalde. The Barbara canal leads out even further to Lake Partwitz. To be on the safe side, there is a small map on board and some instructions for navigating the two canals.
Ride through a tunnel and a lock
On the way to Senftenberg, Tom waves to others who are out and about in their sailing boats, rafts and canoes. At the marina, mum carefully manoeuvres the boat towards the jetty, and Tom is allowed to help with docking. On land, the first stop is the harbour master’s office, and then it’s off for a delicious ice cream. While mum and dad enjoy the view of the pier and the boats in the marina, Tom is busy climbing around the large playground next door. The next stop is Lake Geierswalde. Two tunnels and a lock turn the trip through Koschen canal into a real adventure.
A peninsula with a steep shore
Lighthouse, water skiing, boat hire, food & drink, holiday homes and a long, sandy beach – the range of things to see, do and enjoy on and around Lake Geierswalde is best appreciated from the water. And Tom is speechless when their boat passes some floating homes. Reaching the northern end, dad slows down and turns into Barbara canal, the 1.1 kilometre long link to Lake Partwitz that opened in 2019. He carefully navigates the boat through the waterway, and the ‘Lamir’ fits comfortably under the bridge where walkers and cyclists cross the canal. Lake Partwitz stretches out in front of them. Here, on this 1,100 hectare lake, the ‘Lamir’ is allowed to go a little faster. Colourful holiday homes line the shore, and a few riders and cyclists are out on the path above the embankment. As the boat circles the long peninsula, dad takes photos of the rugged, sandy slopes, reminiscent of the coastal cliffs of the Baltic Sea. A quick detour to the Schwimmende Haus holiday home, then it’s back through Barbara canal to Lake Geierswalde. Enjoy the freedom, breathe in the fresh air and soak up the sunshine.
Picnic by the water
All this time on the water builds up an appetite, so the family stops off at the picnic area near the lighthouse. Mum and dad grab the picnic hamper and blanket, and Tom dashes off to find a cosy spot. After a feast of cheese, fruit and fresh bread, they head back towards Hafencamp campsite.
Rafts, barbecue boats and pleasure boats can be hired without a licence at Hafencamp campsite on Lake Senftenberg, Senftenberg marina, the water sports centre on Lake Geierswalde and Klitten marina on Lake Bärwalde