Saying Danke! to Germany, its Black Forest and the Rhine Falls, I headed towards the 'real' Alps, those incredibly-stunning mountains drenched in snow that I had only dreamt of visiting, till now. The Alpine mountain ranges span many countries, including Austria, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and (northern) Italy. I thought all these countries had so many natural features in common that may be one day they could come together under the banner of the 'Alpine States' or as the 'United States of the Alps'!
Neues Schloss Meersburg
For New Schloss (Castle) you have to walk a few more steps up. The Schloss is very much like typical new German castles, a big building colored in lighter shade with a green garden in front. What is ultra-unique about this castle is the view! A co-traveler called this "the culmination of the day trip to Meersburg". You can spend hours sitting here, enjoying the breeze over the lake and the magnificent view. I was told that the Alpine range can be seen from this height, however bad the bad weather ditched me!
Gutach is a beautiful village in black forest. I reach there in mid night of a november. After spending some good time in a Christmas market in marienplatez i drove that night itself to black forest. It was around 380kms throught stuggart..it was dark when i finally reach Black Forest.. freezing cold and darkness everywhere didn't help me out how beautiful the place is.. i was super exited to see the morning.. and that was the best.
Brimming with fragments of Hansel and Gretel and Little Red Riding Hood, the Black Forest in Germany is an enchanting fairytale in itself. The abode of the cuckoo clock and the decadent chocolate cake of the same name, this mountainous region is a much loved destination. Dotted with towering pine trees and a babbling, meandering Rhine River, the Black Forest is home to several tiny, cosy hamlets and isolated resorts, a lot of which do not have an internet connection to offer. Hike along the tranquil countryside and say hello to a dairy cow or two. Life is good.
Heidelberg Castle (Schloss Heidelberg)
This venerable university town is incomplete without its castle. Perched on the slopes of Mount Königstuhl above river Neckar, be ready to be overwhelmed at Heidelberg Castle.From gothic to renaissance, the castle is a mix of styles and history, and if history stirs you, it’s worth joining a guided tour. The courtyard outside holds the Heidelberg Castle Festival in the summer with some astonishing performances.
So the title is inspired by what my excited friend Prerna kept screaming as we headed for customs clearance (the part of travel, I hate). I grew just as excited after we finished and finally got into a taxi. After a forty minute drive, the kind driver dropped us off at our first destination, the Szechenyi Baths of Budapest. It was a fine sunny day and the impressive exteriors were just as strikingly beautiful as they seemed in the images that I had found on the net.
We used Freiburg im breisgau as a base point to visit the Black Forest. The spot we chose to see the Black forest from was Titisee which boasts of a lake and a panaromic view of the Black Forest. A little further from Titisee(by train) is the region of Feldberg in Baden -Würtemberg which offers sweeping views of the southern portion of the Black Forest. <br /><br />Freiburg itself is a university town, bustling with students, small take out restaurants, cafes , bars and stores. The Freiburg Minster stands looming over this small town and is the most haunting cathedral I have ever seen.
Freiburg was created out of the old German region of Schwabia, and in the place of a church (since 12th century) a cathedral has been there in the heart of the city. Muenster (Minster) was constructed over 3-4 decades, and the style changed from Romanesque to Gothic over a period. It is one of the most beautiful cathedrals, at least from inside. The collection of stained glasses is enormous, and rarely will you find such intricate and huge ones.
Altes Schloß Meersburg
Altes Schloss or the Old Castle, is what brings the name to this city. Built more than a thousand years ago, this is a well-preserved castle. Meersburg, translated means "Castle on the Sea". The street I told about, will take you up to the town, where the castle is, in fact the castles are *because there is a new one also*.
On our way to reach Feldberg from Freiburg we stopped at TITISEE. And it didn't disappoint us. A beautiful lake surrounded by beautiful mountains and Literally 'Thick Black Forest'. There were lot of shopping places nearby, it was like a proper lake side picnic spot!! You can enjoy boat rides on the lake, we skipped the boat ride as we were getting late for the trek. You can also visit the Cuckoo Clock shops. TITISEE is famous for it.
Altstadt (Old Town)
From the castle, a charming path takes you straight down into the old town, at the centre of the old town is the market square, where you'll find beautiful fountains, grand period houses, lots of cafés and even pretty little shops The Altstadt is where you’ll find the sprawling university and Kornmarkt – one of the prettiest squares anywhere!Heidelberg has a lot of local breweries and pick any of them as your lunch spot. With the cobbled pavement, cute balcony seating and a mighty mug of beer, lunch could be just perfect!
Tiny Dreisam river passes through the city and the locality around it is quite artistic. You can see some old buildings, some musical streets close to it. A unique feature of Freiburg is the Bachle (Kanal), which used to be sewer canal most probably during older days. But the city still preserves it and you will be amazed by the kind of feel it gives to the town.
After lunch, I went first to see the Schloss castle. Here lies, the world's biggest ancient barrel for storing wine. The castle also has the fascinating Deutsches Apothekenmuseum with a unique true-to-life display of pharmaceutical artifacts. The museum has been in the castle since 1957, after it was partially destroyed in Bamberg during the Second World War. The museum is a storehouse of the medieval wisdom of healing, the ‘materia medica’—an extensive collection of plant, animal and mineral drugs from the 17th and 18th centuries. It was here that I learnt that both Jesus and Mary Magdalene were faith healers in the ancient era, and used herbs like opium to cure people.
We all travel to meet our own self and black forest, especially Bad Antogast, in Germany can give us exactly that. 'Bad'in German means water and you will find the healing waters all across the forest( only of its kind across Germany) . To reach here you may take train from Frankfurt to Oppenau via Offenburg which is very convenient.