Sztutowo Travel Guide

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Sztutowo Things to Do

  • The Monument II

    The most disturbing part for me were the bones and skulls that one placed underneath the monument. These are parts of the charred remains found by the Soviet troops that liberated the camp and the decision was made to honour those and at the same time to provide a strong message that one should not forget those events.

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  • The Monument I

    A massive monument honours all those who lost their lives here as well as those who underwent the torture and the terror of the Nazi regime. Every year a memorial is held at this monument and every year fewer and fewer survivors attend. Yet the monument stands as a beacon to not forget what happened here between 1939 and 1945.

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  • Many countries

    Stutthof did not only serve as a concentration camp for Poland. As one of the death camps in Nazi Germany prisoners and Jews from 25 countries in Europe were brought here, due to the good rail network in Poland. Each country is honoured by a flag opposite the crematorium.

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  • The Crematorium

    Right next to the gas chambers crematoriums were built. The bodies were removed from the gas chambers and carried to be burnt. Up to 15 bodies could fit into one of these ovens that were heated to temperatures of almost 1000 degrees. After the bodies were burnt the ashes were removed and disposed. However many charred bones were found and remained...

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  • The Gas Chamber

    There were several gas chambers in Stutthof. These could accommodate up to 150 prisoners. The prisoners were told that they would go for disinfection, led into the chambers where gas would be inserted. Within ten to fifteen minutes those inside would be led to a painful and horrible death. In winter when the poison did not work properly due to the...

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  • The Rail

    Thousands of prisoners arrived in Stutthof by rail. A rail link ensured that prisoners from all over Europe arrived directly in the camp. Those destined for extermination were moved from the cattle cars directly into the gas chamber. Whenever other camps in Poland were too “busy” such as Auschwitz the prisoners would then be diverted to Stutthof.

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  • The Washroom

    The Nazis were petrified of diseases such as Typhoid and others, hence prisoners continuously had to be cleaned and disinfected. Though again the washroom lacked any comfort and one can only imagine how this room would have been like in mid winter with hundreds of prisoners inside.

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  • The hospital

    I am not certain if one can actually call it this way, since it was not created to save any of the prisoners. The hospital was a meagre equipped room for show in case someone wanted to check the situation of the prisoners. Here people were not helped, but rather injected with an injection close to the heart that killed within three minutes.

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  • Food and Rations

    As hard as the life was already the supplies to the prisoners was not any better. With hard labour and continuous terror prisoners to those camps were given less then 1000 calories a day. The calculation that a human needs almost 4000 calories when doing hard labour was forgotten by the Nazis, hence all prisoners were just skin and bone, and many...

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  • The Beds

    The arrival of beds in Stutthof may seem to give some relieve. But the fact that those beds brought in from Auschwitz only ensured that prisoners were now able to sleep “on top” of each other even furthered the hardship. Three bunks on top of each other, accommodating up to five prisoners to a bed, stacked right next to each other. No cover or...

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  • The Sleeping Quarters

    The original sleeping quarters was grass that covered the floor and a few thin blankets thrown on top. In these sleeping quarters a few hundred prisoners were cramped together. Those who were lucky enough to sleep in the middle were sheltered from the cold walls. Insects and bugs regularly made their home in the grass below adding to the discomfort...

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  • The Uniforms

    All prisoners were issued with striped uniforms. On those uniforms stars and triangles were placed to identify the prisoners. A yellow star for Jewish Prisoners, and various triangles for criminals, political prisoners, prisoners of war etc. The uniforms were of thin material and did not offer any protection during the cold winters.

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  • Watch Towers

    Besides the fences surrounding the camps also numerous watch towers were built to have an overview of the thousands of prisoners inside the camp. Besides an armed guard one would also have a light shining into the camp controlling every move made by those inside.

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  • The Fence

    The entire camp was fenced by a 2.5 meters high barb wired fence that was connected to high voltage electricity. Over this fence there was no getting out, and those who tried were immediately electrocuted.

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  • The piles of shoes

    When the Russian troops liberated the camp they came across piles of several hundred thousands of shoes. Shoes of men, women and children piled up into large mountains. Today one can still see the remaining shoe soles collected in one of the barracks. All of these had been worn by the victims that perished here.

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  • The Entrance

    The main entrance was a narrow entrance to allow the troops into the camp. Hence this entrance was located next to the headquarters. Though most of those who were imprisoned here never entered through here, since they were brought in by rail, and almost no one inside the camp ever left, with the exception of the forced foot evacuation in the winter...

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  • Map of the Camp

    Stutthof Concentration Camp was one of the smaller operating concentration camps of the Nazi government, however looking at the map one can see the vastness of the camp and how many barracks were built to perch people together. The map can be seen next to the old headquarters of the SS.

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  • SS Headquarters

    Right next to the entrance of the concentration camp one finds the administration quarters and the head office of the concentration camps. From here the logistics were coordinated and the terror planned. Today it is the office of the Stutthof Museum. Before entering into the concentration camp a short video presentation is shown, giving an overview...

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  • Main Entrance

    This was the main entrance into the Stutthof Concentration Camp. It was a little known camp being the first camp built outside of Germany and the last camp to be liberated.

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  • Crematorium

    This is a picture of the Crematorium at Stutthof. It is estimated that 85,000 perished at this camp.

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  • Stutthof Concentration Camp

    Though I have seen TV pictures of carriages used to transport people to concentration camps this was my first encounter with the real thing.

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Sztutowo Transportation

  • Flights

    The closest airport it the airport of Gdansk. LOT the Polish National Airline offers both international and domestic flights with Warsaw being their hub. They are members of the Star Alliance.

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  • Route to Stutthof

    Stutthof is situated some 40 kilometers East of Gdansk. The easiest way to reach the town and the camp is by car, however bare in mind that traffic in Poland is quiet dense and the driving time may take up to 90 minutes.

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Sztutowo Warnings and Dangers

  • MikeAtSea's Profile Photo

    by MikeAtSea Written Jul 29, 2007

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    If you are being approached in the street to change money - decline! Most likely you are going to be given false or old Polish banknotes as it happened to a few of my colleagues in Poland recently. The Polish Zloty was changed recently from old notes to new notes - and you may purchase notes that were only valid in the 80's. If in doubt of the money you receive one simple comparison works: On the old notes the Polish Eagle does not have a crown - on the new and valid ones it has!

    Old Money Changers
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Sztutowo Favorites

  • MikeAtSea's Profile Photo

    by MikeAtSea Written Jul 31, 2007

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    Favorite thing: Even though Poland joined the European Union they are not part of the Euro zone yet. Hence during your stay in Poland you will have to pay with the Polish Zloty.

    Polish Zloty
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