Although I have traveled to Germany and my name is Heidi, I'm not qualified to give you travel tips or off-the-beaten-path recommendations. However, I knew exactly the right woman for the job. My peer travel writer and photography, Varsha Kulkarni-Gawai, will share with us her top three hidden gems in Germany.
Time to discovery Germany with Varsha!
Germany is one of the scenic destinations in Europe. Berlin, Hamburg, Munich etc are popular cities in Germany which attract lots of tourists per year. Apart from these big cities, there are some lesser-known scenic, heritage or modern destinations. Here is the list of three hidden gems that are my favorite places in Germany.
Garmisch-Partenkirchen is popular twin city destination in South Germany. It hosts Germany’s highest peak- Zugspitze. The area is surrounded by scenic mountain peaks, valleys, and lakes. Partnach gorge is hidden in between these valleys nearby the Zugspitze. Partnach Gorge (Partnachklamm) is 80mt deep and 700mt long gorge of Partnach river.
This gorge walk takes us through narrow sidewalks, tunnels, waterfalls overlooking the turquoise-white waters and stone cliffs. It is a fun-filled activity for nature lovers, families and hikers. One can continue on various hiking trails beyond the gorge which leads to unraveling more panoramic views of the valley and Alps.
Parking is available near the Olympic ski stadium and one needs to walk about 1.5Km up to the entrance of the gorge. Thus, make sure to wear comfortable walking shoes, to bring drinking water and some light snacks. There are some restaurants before the gorge entrance. If you plan to continue on the hike after the gorge, bring your packed lunch.
Have you ever wondered where from all the popular fairytales like Cinderella, Snow White, Rapunzel come from? The answer is Germany. Surprised?
In central Germany, one can discover the interesting history behind the origin of these fairytales. Most of these fairy tales were popular folklores in Germany. These were collected and represented by Grimm brothers as today’s popular childhood stories. The fairytale drive starts from Steinau, a small town near Frankfurt and goes towards the north of Germany up to Bremen. Do you recall the story of ‘Musicians from Bremen’? On the way, you will find numerous towns dedicated (or developed for) to a particular fairy tale. One can find theme hotels, restaurants and city tours based on the fairytale.
This drive is undoubtedly a treat for children but adults also enjoy it equally. After all, who doesn’t like the fairytale world?
Black forest is a small corner piece on the south west of Germany. The region is popular for wooden decorated cuckoo clocks and delicious black forest cake. The region is popular for landscape views, spas and different outdoor activities like hiking and mountain biking.
The Black Forest area has rich cultural heritage and traditions. There were some local, traditional businesses which flourished during the medieval period. These people had unique lifestyles and cuisine. If you are interested in such history stuff, then the Black Forest Open Air Museum is a perfect place for you.
This museum is spread across a wide open area and is surrounded by lush green mountains. There are some interactive programs where you can learn some skills like traditional cooking, wood sculpturing etc. The farmhouse is best enjoyed by kids.
The museum is best accessed by car though there is (less frequent) public transport connectivity. One can easily spend half to full day in this museum.
**Post contributed by Varsha Kulkarni-Gawai who is the owner of the blog Varshastravel360. She shares family-friendly travel tips that she has gathered traveling with her husband and 8-year old son. At present, she is in Germany exploring various natural landscapes and historic sites around Europe**