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Elblag Canal - sailing over water and dry land

Built in the 19th century, the Elblag to Ostroda Canal is a unique monument to the art of hydro-engineering and a very important tourist attraction, as featured in Michael Palin's programme, "New Europe".

From a technical point of view, it is one of the most interesting navigational routes in Europe. The canal deals with the 99.5m difference in water levels by means of a system of slipways, locks, dams and safety gates. Five slipways carry boats across dry land on rail-mounted trolleys. In the summer months, pleasure boat cruises are readily available and very popular. The total length of the canal is in excess of 80km and it takes about 11 hours to get from one end to the other. However, if your time is short, there is a stopping point at Maldyty, which is more or less halfway through the trip.

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