Ramsau in the Alps, near the town of Berchtesgaden, with around 3000 inhabitants. And the first official mountaineering village in Bavaria. The nearby Watzmann is considered the most beautiful peak in the Bavarian Alps.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber in Franconia, north-western Bavaria, is famous for its well-preserved medieval half-timbered houses among travelers from all over the world. A stroll along the cobblestone streets and through the narrow streets feels like part of a fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm – or like something out of a medieval film. Rothenburg is one of the best preserved towns from the Middle Ages, including a complete town wall that you can walk around on. A must is a visit to the Torture Museum, where real (and partly imaginary) instruments of torture from the dark ages are on display. After the city tour, the traditional “snowballs” taste particularly good – Rotenburg’s shortcrust pastry specialty.
Tip: The place Dinkelsbühl is about 30 kilometers away from Rothenburg. It is just as charming as Rothenburg and less crowded – especially in summer and at Christmas time.
Lindau is the most beautiful place on Lake Constance – and is so close to Switzerland that you can quickly drive over there for a day trip. In summer you can go by ship, in winter you go through Bregenz in Austria. The historic Lindau is located on an island and convinces with a small, medieval old town where you can shop and enjoy the time in nice cafes. Lindau also has a casino and several museums worth seeing that show international art every year.
The small, medieval town of Cochem lies in the romantic valley of the Moselle, known for its wines – the vines stretch out on the slopes on both sides of the river. At any time of the year, wine tasting should be part of a visit to the medieval city. Just like a hike up to Cochem Castle, which is enthroned on a peak above the valley. A tour of the charming town leads through narrow streets, past lovingly restored half-timbered houses with slate roofs.
Tip: A special feature is the historic mustard mill, where you can learn how different types of mustard are made.
Ramsau is a peaceful place in the Alps, near the town of Berchtesgaden, with around 3000 inhabitants. It is also the first official mountaineering village in Bavaria. The reason: the nearby Watzmann. The 2713 meter high mountain is considered the most beautiful peak in the Bavarian Alps. This makes Ramsau the ideal base camp for skiing, hiking and other outdoor adventures in the Alps. In winter, the nearby Hintersee freezes over completely and is used for ice skating and curling. In addition, Ramsau has one of the most beautiful geotopes in Bavaria: the magic forest, a landslide area in which a microbiotope with particularly impressive pines has formed.
Tip: It is not far from Ramsau to Königssee, the most beautiful alpine lake in Germany.
The picturesque university town of Passau is located in Bavaria on the border with Austria. Not just one river flows here, but three: the Inn, the Danube and the Ilz. That is why Passau is also known as the “Venice of Bavaria”. However, the nickname also refers to the construction of the old town, which has a southern flair. The fact that Passau was able to afford Italian master builders in the Renaissance and Baroque eras is also a sign of the importance of the three-river city: Passau, with its location on the Austrian border, has always been an important trading city. Visitors have the best view of the city from the observation tower of the “Veste Oberhaus” fortress, which dates back to the 13th century. St. Stephen’s Cathedral with its typical onion domes is particularly worth seeing. The organ is also impressive: it has a whopping 17,974 pipes.
Tip: A curiosity is the world’s only dachshund museum, which revolves around the little dog in 6000 exhibits.
The city of Wernigerode is located in the Harz Mountains, right in the heart of Germany. The city itself offers many highlights, such as the medieval old town with its half-timbered houses. The neo-Gothic castle with a museum on art history of the 19th century is also worth seeing. The “smallest house” is curious, which is just 2.95 meters wide and 4.20 meters high and in which up to 11 people are said to have once lived. The legendary history of the city, which was once considered a center for witches and magic, is particularly exciting: The Brocken mountain, the mysterious meeting place for witches on Walpurgis Night, is only a few kilometers away. Incidentally, the historic narrow-gauge railway takes you up to the Brocken.
The city of Stralsund with around 60,000 inhabitants is located on the Baltic Sea. In the 14th and 15th centuries, the city was an important trading point for shipping. With the colorful half-timbered houses and the typical brick buildings of the region, Stralsund is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Just a few minutes outside of town there is a wide sandy beach with a view of the island of Rügen – a worthwhile excursion. Anyone who is enthusiastic about the sea should pay a visit to the Ozeaneum, which is well worth seeing and specializes in the flora and fauna of the Baltic Sea and the world’s oceans.
Tip: The Bismarck herring, the typical pickled herring, was invented in Stralsund. For the best herring rolls, go to fishmonger Rasmus, which has been visited by American presidents.$
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