A Discreetly, Intriguing Case: The 1994 Plauen UFO Sighting

Marcus Lowth
Published Date
September 28, 2023
Last Updated
September 27, 2023
Estimated Reading Time
7 min read
Posted in
UFOs, Close Encounters

Perhaps what makes a UFO sighting in Germany in the mid-nineties stand out is the fact that the encounter unfolded not in a quiet, out-of-the-way rural area, it took place in the middle of a highly populated residential area of a busy German city. And, in part, because of this, the incident was witnessed by multiple different people. Not only that, but some details from the sighting even hint at the possibility of some kind of portal or portal-inducing technology being utilized.

While it is a sighting that is not well-known (if at all) outside of the UFO community, it is one that is rich in detail and with the potential to offer another small piece of the UFO and alien puzzle. Just what was this strange object? Why did it choose to appear in such an inhabited place? And what was the purpose of its appearance? All of these questions remain unanswered three decades later.

Although the account has appeared on several online platforms, it appears to have first entered the public arena in the book Best UFO Cases – Europe by Illobrand von Ludwiger.

A Strange Light From The Balcony

On the evening of May 21st, 1994, at around 11 pm in the city of Plauen, around 150 east of Frankfurt in Germany, 39-year-old postal worker, “Mrs. H” was in her first-floor high-rise apartment she shared with her daughter, watching a movie on television. [1] On this particular evening, her daughter was out for the evening at a local discotheque.

As the movie she was watching came to an end, Mrs. H got up from the sofa and stepped out onto her balcony. As she did so, her attention was immediately drawn to a strange light in front of her. She estimated it was approximately five miles away from where she was standing. She stared at the glow for several moments, realizing that it appeared to be wrapped around a single oak tree, with all other trees around it remaining in darkness.

The more she looked, she also noticed that a strong wind appeared to be blowing near the trees, but only the tree that was lit up appeared to be moving, with the other surrounding trees remaining almost motionless. It was as she was looking around for the apparent source of this wind that she spotted a huge, glowing object hovering overhead, approximately 100 feet above the ground and around 300 feet from her.

She described the object as looking like “two frisbees stuck together” that were “turning in opposite directions”. The top side of the object had a circle of white lights stretching around it that were turning in an anti-clockwise formation, while the underside had a circle of lights moving in the opposite direction, as well as dark square-like windows.

Mrs. H continued to watch the strange scene for around a minute before the wind suddenly ceased and the tree returned to its usual appearance. The encounter, however, was just beginning.

Suddenly, the object moved off to the left and vanished behind one of the many high-rise buildings around her own. Then, a second or two later, it reappeared once more, this time moving to the front of the building. Instead of stopping, however, it continued on its route and disappeared behind another high-rise building.

At this point, Mrs. H left the balcony area and ran into the street in the hope of locating the object once more. She briefly caught sight of it before it disappeared behind a building ahead of her. As she turned around to begin her way back to her apartment, she could see multiple people who had seemingly become aware of the same anomaly as she had, with people standing on their balconies looking astonished at the events that had just transpired. In total, Mrs. H claimed the incident took around six minutes.

There were, however, other witnesses to these mysterious events.

The Accounts Of Marina S And Mrs. A

At around 11:15 pm, Marina S was asleep along with her young daughter in her 11-floor apartment in the same location when the telephone rang, dragging her out of sleep. To her surprise, her friend, Mrs. A, who lived on the third floor of the apartment block, was on the other end. She immediately blurted out that “there is a UFO above our building”.

Mrs. A continued that she had been watching the object for several minutes and she wanted to know if she could see the object also. Thinking her friend was playing some kind of joke, Martina went to hang the phone up. That was, until she heard Mrs. A state that it was “coming back again” and that she should go to the window to look for herself.

At this point, Martina walked over to the window and was more than shocked to see a shiny, silver, metallic object hovering almost directly in front of her window. Like Mrs. H, she would later state that the object had a top and a bottom section with lights that turned in opposite directions to each other. She further stated that she believed “the object was about to land on top of the building”.

Martina put down the phone, went to gather her 4-year-old, and then quickly made her way downstairs to her friend’s third-floor apartment.

After going over what they had seen, Martina and Mrs. A decided to venture out onto Mrs. A’s third-floor balcony. From here, both women were looking up at the object. As they looked on, they could feel a “strong wind” coming from the craft. Even stranger, there was a distinct round “gap” in the clouds directly over the top of the object.

After a moment or two, the object moved up and down “like a yo-yo” and continued to do so for several minutes. Then, the object began to ascend, calmly but purposely. It eventually came to a stop before tilting onto its axis before shooting off into the distance at great speed.

Before it disappeared, Marina telephoned her sister-in-law who lived a short distance away, informing her of what was taking place and alerting her to keep a look out for anything strange in the sky. Several moments after the object had sped off from the high-rise apartment building, Marina’s sister-in-law also reported seeing strange lights in the sky. What’s more, she managed to capture significant video footage of the sighting, footage that we will return to shortly.

Marina reported the incident to the police, who sent out a patrol unit to speak to the two women. Although the object had long since disappeared by the time they arrived, they did offer to the women that they had received multiple other reports from people around the city that evening.

An Attempt At Suppression?

An article in the local newspaper reported the sighting the following day. However, rather than seriously contemplating that the object could be a vehicle from another world, they offered that it was likely nothing more than “reflections from disco spotlights in the clouds”. After reading the report, the women began to doubt themselves and what they had seen, including Marina’s sister-in-law, who took the decision to wipe the footage she had captured – a move she would regret.

A short time after the article appeared, the husband of one of Marina’s work colleagues – who happened to be a police officer – informed the women that the newspaper report was inaccurate, at best. It appeared, at least according to him, that what they had seen had been a genuine unidentified object.

There were, though, other intriguing details to surface. Of particular interest were discoveries made by Mrs. H and Marina. Each happened to have washing on their washing lines at the time of the sightings. When they went to retrieve the items the following day, each found their clothes covered with a strange black soot.

For Marina, however, the events would seemingly stretch much further into the future.

The Continual Strange Experiences Of Marina

In the days, weeks, and months that followed, Marina claimed to have heard footsteps and other strange noises near, or in, her apartment. Even stranger and more unsettling, she also claimed to have seen strange lights inside the apartment.

These events disturbed Marina so much that she eventually switched to a different apartment. In fact, when a team of UFO investigators came to visit Marina in December 1995 (18 months after the encounter) in order to investigate the incident, she steadfastly refused to return to the apartment with the investigative team, not only for a few minutes.

Although the team gave out around 500 leaflets asking for further witnesses to the events on the night in question, only one person responded. However, the information he gave corroborated the events remarkably.

He would describe seeing an object that was almost identical to that witnessed by the women of the apartment block at the same time (around 11 pm). Even more intriguing, he also described seeing the strange hole in the clouds directly above the hovering object.

A Discreetly Thought-Provoking Case

Perhaps above all else the UFO sighting in Plauen in the late spring of 1994 is just what the purpose of the incident might have been. Aside from the strange sounds and lights witnessed by Marina in the weeks after the encounter, there were no apparent signs of abduction.

Was this, then, some kind of reconnaissance mission, and if so, what, or who were the occupants of this strange craft interested in? Could they have been gathering information on future, potential abductees, for example? Or was this some kind of intelligence-gathering mission regarding the infrastructure itself?

And should we consider that the object might not have been extraterrestrial in nature, but some kind of top-secret military aircraft? And if that is the case, why would they choose to test this vehicle in the middle of high-rise apartment blocks where they would be seen by dozens, perhaps hundreds of people?

Lastly, what should we make of the intriguing detail of the strange wind seemingly produced by the object, and the even stranger hole in the clouds above it? Might this suggest the presence of some kind of portal that allowed this apparent otherworldly vehicle access to our world in the first place?

One thing is certain. Although it is little-known outside of UFO circles, the multiple witness sighting in the small city of Plauen in Germany in May 1994 is an intriguing and thought-provoking one. And one that when considered against the many other sightings on record around the world and across the decades, contributes a tiny bit more to the rapidly emerging big picture of the UFO and alien question.

The short video below examines some of the most intriguing UFO sightings of all time.


1 A UFO in a street in Plauen, Germany, MUFON-CES http://archiv.mufon-ces.org/text/english/plauen.htm

Marcus Lowth

Marcus Lowth is a writer with a love for UFOs, aliens, and the Ancient Astronaut Theory, to the paranormal, general conspiracies, and unsolved mysteries. He has been writing and researching with over 20 years of experience.

Marcus has been Editor-in-Chief for several years due to his excellent knowledge in these fields. Marcus also regularly appears as an expert on radio talk shows including Troubled Minds and Unexplained Radio discussing these topics.

Read Marcus' full bio.

You can contact Marcus via email.

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