10 enchanting places in Germany
Mystical landscapes and places, enchanted lakes and castles - Germany is considered the fairytale country. Here are ten enchanting places that are truly real.
Many fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm are based in Germany. One of their most famous stories tells of a donkey, a dog, a cat and a rooster who want to become city musicians in Bremen. They never arrive, but their statue has been standing next to the Bremen Town Hall since 1953. The fairy tale itself, on the other hand, is much older: in 2019 it celebrates its 200th anniversary.
Since 1975, the German Fairy Tale Route has been guiding visitors to the living places of the Brothers Grimm and to places where their fairy tales are located. Bremen is one of many stations on the 600-kilometer-long (373 mi) holiday route. Another one is Marburg: the brothers studied here – surrounded by a fairytale-like, medieval backdrop.
The Rakotz Bridge
The Rakotz Bridge, also called the Devil's Bridge, looks so wild and romantic that you might think this is the crossing point to the fairytale world. But the bridge is completely real and is located in the Rhododendronpark Kromlau between Cottbus and Görlitz. The mystical arch attracts thousands of tourists every year. However, restoration work is in progress until 2020.
Elbe Sandstone Mountains
Are there elves or dwarves living here? This impressive landscape can be found not in Middle-earth nor in Westeros, but in Saxony near Dresden. The Elbe Sandstone Mountains, also known as Saxon Switzerland, are known for their bizarre rocks that were formed by the deposits of a sea during the Cretaceous period. Movies like "The Chronicles of Narnia" and "Hansel and Gretel" were filmed here.
Neuschwanstein Castle on the edge of the Alps is so magical that Walt Disney used it as the model for his Sleeping Beauty Castle. The original was built by Ludwig II, King of Bavaria, who had it constructed in 1869 as an idealized representation of a medieval knight's castle. The introverted king planned Neuschwanstein to be his retreat where he could escape into a world of fairy tales and myths.
Rothenburg ob der Tauber
This small town in Bavaria seems to have emerged from a fairy tale book. Half-timbered houses, winding alleys, fortified towers, a continuous city wall – Rothenburg is pure romanticism. More than 2 million guests from all over the world visit the medieval town on the Tauber River every year.
Blautopf in Blaubeuren
Blautopf is the name of this idyllic spring in Baden-Württemberg, entwined with many myths and legends. A stone sculpture on the shore of the bright blue-green water evokes the "Story of the Beautiful Lau", which tells of a water nymph on the Blautopf learning to laugh again. Even today, it is said she can still be seen in the depths of the lake from time to time.
This enchanted castle bears the epithet "fairytale castle of Württemberg". No wonder that it served as the backdrop for the German fairytale film "Sleeping Beauty". The neo-Gothic castle was built in the middle of the 19th century on medieval foundations. It towers on a gigantic rock above the rooftops of Honau in the Swabian Alb. Visits are only possible as part of a guided tour.
The Saalfeld fairy grottoes radiate a mystical aura. They were created hundreds of years ago by mining work in the Thuringian slate mountains. In the course of time, the underground rooms were transformed into stalactite caves, which have been listed in the Guinness Book of Records since 1993 as "the most colorful caverns in the world".
The witches' dancing place in the Harz Mountains
Fairytales would be nothing without evil characters. If you want to see them in real life, you should go to the Harz Mountains in the night from April 30th to May 1st! The Walpurgis Night takes which place on that night, in which many witches and devils cavort on the streets, especially on the witches' dance place above the Bodetal (picture) or on the Brocken, the highest mountain in the Harz.