Berchtesgaden – A (holiday) paradise crisscrossed by hills and valleys
Be it in spring, summer, autumn, or winter – in and around Berchtesgaden there is a lot to discover and experience. The enchanting beauty and the cultural wealth of the region is food for the soul in every season.
Spring is the time when nature awakens from its long wintery slumber. The idyllic mountainous landscape with its snow-covered peaks and the blooming pastures down in the valleys are the perfect territory for hikers and nature lovers. But, of course, the region is not just ideal for those who seek adventure in the mountains – lovers of art and culture will also find this is the perfect spot for them. Since Celtic times the region has seen a shared history and culture. Technical feats and innovations for mining salt, the “white gold” of the mountains, did their part. Later on Romans, Bavarians, Prince Archbishops from Salzburg, and Bavarian kings enriched the region.
A trip to Berchtesgaden’s museum "Schloss Adelsheim" in is a must for those looking to find out more about the past of this unique region. And so is a quick stop at the salt mines. The traditional German miners’ greeting “Glück auf!” is the motto for each trip into this hidden world underneath the salt mountain. Extensive tunnels are proof of the miners’ hard work and the fact that salt mining still plays an important part in the Berchtesgaden region today.
In summer Königsee lake with its emerald-green waters that reflect the mighty Watzmann mountain is a truly rewarding destination. And it is one of Germany’s cleanest lakes. During a lake cruise visitors can easily reach St. Bartholomä, the baroque pilgrimage chapel that dates back to the 12th century. For those ambitious enough to have packed their hiking shoes the stunning panoramic view from the Kehlsteinhaus hut up on Obersalzberg at 1,800 metres above sea level is the best reward there can be. Speaking of views: using the Jennerbahn cable car visitors can admire the natural beauty of the Berchtesgadener Land National Park from above and on foot.
A picture-perfect Indian Summer – only not in Canada: the unique natural landscape of the Berchtesgadener Land National Park shows off its most colourful side in autumn. Vast forests glow in every possible shade of red and yellow. Aside from old customs such as the ceremonial driving down of the cattle from the mountains there are numerous traditions to be observed at the markets and during events of the region’s Farmers’ Autumn in many villages. When the fog drifts across the water in the mornings and the air is still dusky a hike up into the mountains of Berchtesgadener Land can be particularly rewarding. On such days one can often enjoy the warming glow of the autumn sun and take in a capture stunning views above the sea of clouds which is only occasionally pierced by the highest peaks. A paradise for professional as well as hobby photographers.
In Berchtesgadener Land winter is anything but a boring season. Winter walks, long hikes, merry toboggan rides, or a relaxed round of Bavarian curling are only a few of the many activities that await guests here during the fourth season. How about a snow-shoe hike or cross-country skiing? Both are perfect ways of quietly enjoying the enchanting winter landscape. A swift ride on the bob and tobogganing tracks by Königssee lake promises more action – as does Jenner, the largest skiing resort in Berchtesgadener Land which is a guaranteed fun time for beginners as well as more seasoned skiers.
A merry mood and plenty of relaxation are part of every trip to the Watzmanntherme spa with its adventure pool, sauna, and sports pool. Even avid climbers can indulge their hobby in winter here – at the climbing centre Bergsteigerhaus Ganzing Bischofswiesen which offers a climbing area of 2,000 square metres with more than 200 routes. And the natural tobogganing track that starts right by the summit station of Hirscheck cable car at 1,390 altitude metres promises great fun for young and old.
There are so many ways of discovering the natural paradise of Berchtesgaden so you best start right away.