Berlin, Munich or Frankfurt may be the first cities that come to mind when planning a trip to Germany, there’s much more to see. On a serendipitous quest for a quaint lunch or stunning mountain views, you may just stumble upon a postcard-perfect little locale worthy of its own destination. Here’s a look at a five of Germany’s less known, yet seriously cool towns.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber
A quick day trip from Munich will transport you to the pages of a fairy tale. Exquisitely preserved medieval architecture line cobblestone streets. Perhaps one of the most beautiful and charming cities in all of Germany, if not the world, such palatial relics such as the fortified gate, the renaissance building Rathaus (town hall) and the Roedertor tower warrant a visit to Rothenburg ob der Tauber. If that isn’t romantic enough, sprinkle some snow on this lovely village during the holidays, and the fairy tale comes to life.
The tiny Alpine village is home to only 3,000 people, but there are a million reasons to visit the storybook town. You may instantly recognize the often photographed St. Sebastian Church and the Hintersee Lake, yet beyond the famed landmarks, Ramsau boasts an array of activities all year, making it worth a visit. Spend the day hiking and not only are you privy to gorgeous views, but the many Alpine Huts and mountain restaurants make a great pit stop for a tasty meal and warm hospitality.
Lindau delivers the best of both worlds; a picturesque mountain town and beautiful lakeside village all wrapped up in one. The southern German town straddles the Austria Germany border, where the snow-capped Alps make a magnificent backdrop. Charming inns, timbered houses and local tavern grace the streets. You’ll discover a host of outdoor options to enjoy from hiking in Bregenz, biking through town or taking a dip in the pristine lake.
What is a trip to Germany without visiting the Black Forest or Schwarzwald as it’s known in German? Home to the Grimms Brother fairy tales, the cuckoo clock, and famed thermal spas, you could easily spend a few days in the Southwest German town. Don’t miss Germany’s largest waterfall, Triberger Waterfall, the elegant city of Baden-Baden known for having more than 30 spas, and the House of 1000 Clocks. Of course, it goes without saying, sample the divine Black Forest cake, also known as Schwarzwderkirschtorte in German.
Situated on the banks of the Rhine River, Bonn may fall under the radar; but it’s worth a visit. The enchanting town offers old-world appeal, welcoming cafes and host of gardens. Bonn is also home to the famous composer Ludwig Van Beethoven, the gummy bear candy, and the Drachenburg Castle. One of Germany’s most renowned wine regions, oenophiles can visit the terraced vineyards and gorgeous estates to sample a selection of red wines.
The next time you are in Germany, explore some of the best off the beaten path towns. You never know which one will be your favorite!