Epic Places in Germany

Whether or not most people realize it, Germany is a country filled with spellbinding scenery and marvelous historical buildings, towns, and villages. While some are rather obvious like the Alps or the many landmarks found in the nation’s capital, there are plenty that elude even the savviest German.

Obersee Lake

Even within the famed Alpine regions of south Germany, there are many stunning hidden gems worth seeking out. Obersee Lake in Bavaria is one of them. Find it in Berchtesgaden National Park, close to the Austrian border. The lake is known for its clear, serene waters, which reflect the surrounding mountains.

Gorge, Walkway Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Germany’s many natural landscapes promise breathtaking hiking experiences overlooking rivers, forests, mountain ranges, and even the occasional medieval castle. Yet, one of the most unique natural features just waiting to be explored is found in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, a ski resort in Bavaria. The Gorge Walkway looks like something out of Lord of the Rings. The winding creek is surrounded on either side by steep precipices that form the ‘walls’ of the corridor.

Burg Neuleiningen

Indeed, regions throughout Germany are studded with phenomenally well-preserved castles and palace residences from various architectural eras beginning during the Middle Ages. Yet, sometimes the ruins of said castles can be equally as impressive. This is certainly the case with regard to Burg Neuleiningen in southwest Germany, which was destroyed in a battle with the French in 1690.

Rothenburg ob der Tauber

For those who are in love with the fairytale aesthetics of old Germany like me, there are luckily a handful of other beautiful towns and villages that have maintained their original charm. When conjuring a mental image of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, think timber homes with gabled roofs and cobblestone streets, filled with well-preserved historical buildings including towers, gatehouses, and St. Jakob’s Church. The best time to visit is during the holiday season when everything is dusted with sparkling white snow and the Christmas markets have commenced.


espite its name, Schrecksee doesn’t actually bear any connection to the fictional green ogre, except perhaps for the lush coloring of the surrounding mountain peaks. The lake is situated in the Alps, and it has remained astoundingly untouched by civilization. In fact, images of the lake appear to be taken from an entirely different era altogether, as if it functioned as the inspiration for Jurassic Park or The Land Before Time.

Rakotzbrücke in Kromlau

This epic spot is located in a village in the district of Görlitz, which is situated in eastern Germany near the Polish border and is worth visiting in itself. The reason mentioning Kromlau here, however, is for its stunning arched Rakotzbrücke, which extends like a bridge across the water, creating a perfect circle when reflected on the surface. What’s more is that this is also the site of the largest rhododendron park in the country.


Basteibrücke, or Bastion Bridge, near the German-Czech border functions as a different kind of juncture altogether, albeit no less beautiful. The sandstone bridge was built in 1851 and stands at over 194 meters above the Elbe River. It is surrounded by jutting rock formations and trees, which only adds to its fantastical appeal

Cochem, Rhineland-Palatinate

The tiny town of Cochem in Rhineland-Palatinate dates back to late Roman and Celtic times. Today, it remains filled with dozens of intriguing historical buildings including the Cochem Imperial Castle, which is surrounded by vineyards. It is popular to take a sightseeing tour from a boat on the Moselle River. From this vantage point, it is possible to see Cochem’s many colorful homes set against the backdrop of the castle poised on a sharp hill.

Lichtenstein Castle, Honau, Baden-Württemberg

Speaking of castles, the Lichtenstein Castle located in Honau, Baden-Württemberg could truly give Neuschwanstein a run for its money. Built in stone and featuring a large turret and access by bridge, this gorgeous abode was built in gothic revival style in 1840. It is so beautiful that it is known for contributing to the aesthetics of 19th century German romanticism, which helped pave the way for future concepts of German nationalism.