All of this tours you can reach within 5 minutes to max. 1 hours from our house.
Known the world over for its emerald green water and unique mountain landscape. Cruise silently across the lake on electric-powered boats and hear the famed Königssee echo. Continue on to the peninsula of St. Bartholomew with the unmistakable red onion domes atop its ancient pilgrimage church.
long ago a king named Watzmann ruled over the Land of Berchtesgaden. He hated both humans and animals and loved to torment his subjects and torture their animals. This is why mad hunting parties were his favorite sport and he loved the sound of the hunting horns and the baying of the hounds resounding throughout the forest. He was not alone in his passion, his wife and seven children shared his lust for wild hunts where the sweating horses collapsed with exhaustion and the game was chased to death before being savagely shredded to bits by the hounds.
This madness continued day and night until God decided to punish these godless rulers.
With cries of Off to the hunt! echoing from the castle courtyard and hunting horns resounding, the whole family set off one early morning with their baying hounds. In the pale light of dawn, the king noticed an old woman with her grandchild on her lap. He spurred his horse on toward them so as to trample them to death. When the farmer and his wife ran out of the hut to bring their dying loved ones inside, the king called the dogs on them till they were bitten to shreds. Smiling, the king, queen and children observed the bloody scene.
And they still stand there today: the king, his wife and their seven children will forever be forced to stare down into the Land of Berchtesgaden. The Watzmann massif has come to be known as the symbol of the Berchtesgaden area.
The National Park
The National Park's primary mission is to let nature take care of itself. This is why we intentionally abstain from human intervention in the heart of the protected area and nature's development is left to run its own course. Forests, for example, are allowed to grow old, decay and be reborn on their own. On the other hand the useable area can continue to serve traditional functions: summer grazing for cattle, as well as a fishery and boat traffic on Königssee. The development of unnatural spruce growths into a more typical mixed forest is assisted in the grooming area by the purposeful planting of beech and fir trees. If necessary, measures may be taken to combat the bark beetle (without the use of destructive products) so as to protect the commercially used forests neighboring the National Park. Environmental Education The native American Indian, Tatanga Mani, told the "white man": "I did not attend any of your higher schools, yet I went to the best university that exists: the great university out there in nature." In order to help you, too, experience the variety of nature in the National Park with all your senses, we have put together an extensive environmental program. Visitors' Information The main information center is the Nationalpark-Haus in Berchtesgaden. There, with the use of exhibits, films, a slide show, books and much more, you can find out all about the National Park. Other information points are located at the entrances to the National Park (Königssee, Wimbachbrücke, Klausbachtal), as well as at St. Bartholomew on Königssee. The Park service staff would be glad to be of help in the Park as well.
A varied program of free guided hikes with a number of themes is available both in summer and in winter. Should you want to experience nature on a long hike or find out more about a particular theme on location, we have taken the most diverse age groups and special interest groups into account. During school vacations we offer activities for children and families with plenty of fun and games. In the winter the program is complemented by interesting lectures at the Nationalpark-Haus. Pick up a free copy of our current program at all our information points, at the tourist offices or by dropping us a line.
The Salt mine
When Berchtesgaden was still an independent church principality, only a chosen few were allowed to visit the mine opened in 1517. Today this underground realm is open to every visitor on guided tours that include a train ride, a raft ride, a funicular ride, rides down slides, a salt museum, an educational film and a number of interesting displays. Visitors are dressed in miner's costumes and given a small souvenir at the end of the tour. Although the tour is led in German only, recordings explain some of the essentials to non-German speakers.
The church, redecorated in the baroque style from 1512 is a worldrenowned motive for photographs (with the Reiteralpe in the background); painted gothic wooden figures, 15th cent., cemetery founded in 1685.
Tips: stroll along the Soleleitungspath (900 m) with lovely panorama (former 29 km "brine" pipeline from Berchtesgaden to Reichenhall, in use from 1816 until 1927 ).
The Hintersee is romantically situated at the foot of the Hochkalter (2,608 m) with lovely reflections of the mountain, popular place for painters from Vienna and Munich round 1871. Walk: Coming from Ramsau through the "Magic Wood" to the Hintersee, round the lake or take a rowingboat and back to Ramsau (approx. 2 hours, 8 km).
Beautiful hike through the Wimbachtal, to the gorge in 15 minutes, 1 hour to the Wimbach castle and to the Wimbach-Gries-Hütte in another 1.5 hours.
Oldest finds from 2,000 B.C. The archbishop Konrad I. from Salzburg founded the Minster St. Zeno in the 12th cent., largest romanic Basilika in upper Bavaria; greyred, romanic portal with two resting lions, lategothic main altar, choir chairs with carvings (1520), two gothic paintings (1516), carved lid to the christening stone; lovely cloister.
St. Nikolaus church, 1181, romanic and gothic, frescos by Moritz v. Schwind
St. Ägid church, 1159, romanic, new gothic
St.-Johannes-Hospital church, before 1140, oldest church in the city. Reichenhall health resort with a spa park, a casino and a large " evaporation.
Quellenbau and old saltmine historical site (from 1836) und saltmuseum.
local museum, Getreidegasse 4 (town centre); celtic und roman finds
Predigtstuhlbahn, (cable car) 1.614 m, since 1928
Tips: family-orientated swimming-pool and ice-rink
Thumsee, idyllic Mountain lake with a foot path leading right round the lake, 2.5 km
Cyclepaths and footpaths on the northeastern city border along the river Saalach and in Nonn
Mountain spa park, 2 km southeast, in Bayerisch Gmain beautiful walks 1/2 to 5 hours in the Lattengebirge (mountains)
Alpine tour on the Staufen, 2 km north of Reichenhall; 1,771 m, 3 hours, wonderful view.
800 years old, situated in a wide, sunny valley. "Zella" = pasture ground divided by boundaries; used to be a favoured hunting ground for the archbishops of Salzburg. Today it is mainly known for its ice skating rink (many world records for speed skating).
Church St. Michael, 1725 27, Tower with two bulbous spires, spacious main room, colourful stuccowork on the ceiling, Holy Mary statue from Inzell, standing on the globe. Magnificent, large crucifix with flying angels catching the blood of christ hanging from the ceiling. Post pub, 16th cent., with corner towers and a courtyard with arcades.
Tip: Pleasant stroll round the Falkenstein, south of Inzell, path No. 11, past the tiny Falkensee (moorland lake). 3 hours walk, no height difference.
Glacier garden: 2 km south of Inzell, by the road: Natural monument from the last ice-age, 10,000 years ago; Scraping marks on the rock caused by the glacier.
Former bishopric of the Augustin canons on a peninsula in the Höglwörth lake. 4 storey building and a cloister church with stuccowork and frescos.
Tip: bathing in the moorlake, in quiet surroundings.
Reit im Winkl:
The oldest existing record is a donation deed from 1160; the name "Reit" originates from a clearing ("Reutt"); first tourism in the 19th century. Health resort in a spacious, sunny valley with farmhouses in the typical bavarian mountain style. The church is neobaroque from 1913, but resembles the 17th century.
Between Reit im Winkl and Ruhpolding, along the Deutsche Alpenstraße you can find lovely mountain lakes in untouched nature; one of these is the Mittersee bathing , boating, surfing or romantic strolls.
The nobility "de Truna", 12th cent. 1275 Traunstein is finally joined to Bavaria; Court and trade city on the border of Salzburg; 1375 municipal law on the salt trading road Reichenhall Munich. Prime until 1587; salt trade put under governmental control; commercial decline. 17th cent.. new salt resources found in Reichenhall and construction of a 30 km brine pipe (1617 19) to the Traunsteiner Sudhaus until 1912; 1810 elongation to Rosenheim
Fires in 1704 and 1851 very few of the baroque houses are preserved. 1860: incorporated in the railway system.
Saline chapel, 1630, lovely pulpit and side altars; on the Karl-Theodor-Square, where you can also see splendid 2 and 3 storey houses, 17th 18th cent.; former working and living quarters of the salt workers.
Museum in the town tower: Trade history like saline, handicraft, trade and printery.
popular pilgrimage point Maria Eck, built at 882 m sea level, wide panorama, especially on the lake Chiemsee,
Chapel, 1640; precious altar, 1691; Rococo funiture, many votive tablets.
Mammutheum, situated between Siegsdorf and Bergen. Excavation of the biggest mammut skeletton yet found in the world; museum about "stone age pure", the world of our ancestors.
With its 148 km2 it is one of the largest communities in Bavaria (approx. half the size of Munich). founded during the Bajuvaric settlement ("ing"-ending). First mentioned in 924. Well-known health resort: Started in 1933 with the arrival of the first special train of the travel agency Carl Degener in Ruhpolding.
Church St. Georg, situated on a hill, is one of the most beautiful village churches in upper Bavaria. 1738 1757, Rococo, painted in 1821; impressive altars, richly decorated pulpit (the "good shepherd") with two stairs, carved confessionals and prayer benches; on top of these an exceptional work of art: the "Ruhpoldinger Madonna", 1230, carved and painted, icon like face.
Local museum with carved goods, furniture, traditional clothing, clocks, weapons from the last 300 years, former hunting lodge of the Duke from 1587 (neogothic, baroque painted ceilings).
In the former vicarage: museum of sacral art: the religious farming life as well as liturgical implements.
"Schnauferlstall"; Privat motorbike collection from 1924 to 1960.
Fairy-tale family park, in the middle of a mountain wood, near an old "Hörndl" saw from the 17th cent. you can find the fairytale park. Numerous attractions delight young and old.
Woodcutter-museum. 3 ha area with main museum (tools and machines) and spacious open air museum, showing rebuilt woodcutters huts. From the peak of the Rauschberg (1,645 m, south of Ruhpolding) you have a marvellous view on the alps and Bavarian hills as well as 3 km "alps learning path" cablecar, easy descent
Tip: Tovely footpaths by the Froschsee (near Inzell).
Traditional Air-health resort in the climatically favored high-valley of the Tiroler Ache, surrounded by the woody mountains of the Chiemgau. The historical development of the place is combined with the castle built in 1075 through duke Marquart II. of Hohenstein. From the 13th cent. to 1804 under the law of the Bavarian duke, that reached far over the Achental. The medieval appearance of the castle has remained mostly intact; today in private possession.
Castle Chapel St. Vitus: Situated above the castle, with classicistic altars and paintings from the baroque time.
Fairy-tale-adventure park: Idyllicaly situated in a side valley, underneath the Hochplattenbahn, that delights especially because of its summer tobboganing run.
Celtic, romanic settlement; market town since 1385, part of Salzburg until 1803; historic place.
Parish church St. Martin, 1611, baroque and rococo; impressive pulpit, carved praying benches from 1700, showing geese a different one on each chair. Sculptures of Rupert and Virgil by the Salzburg sculptor Georg Hitzl.
Bird museum: 330 stuffed birds
Lake Waging, fifth largest lake in Bavaria, but the warmest; moor lake, over 10 km long, up to 2 km wide; watersports, fishing.
Tip: stroll round the Waginger See, 5 hours, through the pastures, fields and forests of the hilly Chiemgau.
East of Waging, Mühlberger Weg (car park), over 14 pilgrim stations to the baroque pilgrimage church Maria Heimsuchung with view on the lake. Continue over Gaden (lategothic church) to the north of Petting and to Tettenhausen on the eastern shore. Back to Waging towards the west over the bottleneck.
Laufen on the river Salzach:
Gothic Hall Church, oldest in Southern Germany, with a low arcade round the church; graves from before the 14th cent., houses with beautiful façades and arches on romantic streets; old salttrade and shipping city.
Situated over the Salzach, terraced, inhabited B.C.; in 700 the former dukes residence was converted to the cloister of the Salzburg bishopric Nonnberg. In 1234 (foundation of the city) the Salzburg archbishop Eberhard II. bought the castle hillfrom the Kloster Nonnberg and built the castle as protection against the Bavarian rulers. Seriously damaged in 1611 by the Bavarians; rebuilt as a hunting lodge for the Salzburg archbishops, until 1803; fire in 1805; 26 m high granary; castle chapel St. Michael, 1693, early baroque, with a large painting as altar piece (1697) by J. M. Rottmayr (born in Laufen) showing the "Engelsturz" (the fall of the angels)
Since 1911: "Museum of the Rupertiwinkel" in the fortress.
City square and old city: generous architecture in the Inn-Salzach style, enlarged in the 14th cent.; very well preserved (because of the economic situation after the union with Bavaria in 1816).
Town houses, city wall, city gates, fountain statues; town hall with façade from 1711.
Parish church St. Laurentius, 1679, carvings on the altar by Guggenbichler; Putti on clouds (1720); 2 paintings by C. D. Asam from Weihenstephan.
Cloister church, 1681 83, only preserved "Augustin hermit" church in Upper Bavaria, baroque, altar by Salzburg artists in typical black and gold.
Tip: you can find the most beautiful "lattice-work"-barn (Bundwerkstadeln) along the road from Palling to Tittmoning. Built since 1820 to store fodder and harvest. Beautifully made and painted by carpenters and painters. Architectorial artistic memorials from the prime of the Bavarian farmers building and living culture.
Church St. Laurentius, 1491; 3 more than life-sized carved figures on the main altar by "Meister von Rabenden", 1515.
Bathing possibilities on the lake Obing.
Altenmarkt a. d. Alz:
Cloister Baumburg, throning high above the Alz valley, with the church St. Margaretha, 11th cent., Augustin canons; first monks from Berchtesgaden; renowned school for hundreds of years; Double tower with romanic cloister church, baroque bulbous spire; inside decoration a juwel of the Bavarian rococo : colourful frescos on the ceiling, playful shell stucco work (Meister aus Wessobrunn); stations of the cross, 1709; carved choirstalls; gravestones from the 12th 15th cent.
Situated south of Rosenheim, the 1,838 m high Wendelstein is one of the northernmost mountains before the alps with a wonderful panorama.
Historic cogwheel railway, built in 1912, the first mountain railway in the Bavarian alps by Otto von Steinbeis.
Since 1970: Large cabin cablecar on the west side of the Wendelstein.
The sGEO-PARK Wendelstein 250 million years experienced earth hitory: several paths; didactically well-presented information (signs, writings) let you relive the history of the alps.
Stein on the Traun:
with a three part ruin of a robber-knights fortress, on the steep Nagelfluhwand (48 m) before the river Traun joins the river Alz; Rock- or cave castle, 12th cent., dug into the rockface by the Herren von Stein: largest and best preserved cave fortress in Germany. Above this lies the high castle, underneath is the new castle, 16th cent. rampart, 11th cent.; You can visit the rooms and corridors of the robber knights.
A masterpiece in the village church the late gothic altar from 1510. carved figures of three apostles by "Meister von Rabenden"; altar wings with paintings from Salzburg; precious side altars; cemetery with wrought iron crosses on the graves, 18th 19th cent.
The Benedictine cloister, 994, romantically placed on an island, surrounded by lovely lakes; monks from St. Emmeram in Regensburg; school of painting and abode for science and music. Haydn and Mozart, who often played on the baroque organ, were guests. Closing of the cloister in 1803; today it is a hotel.
Cloister church St. Lambert, 1180; romanic to baroque; singular wall painting in the church with renaissance frescos, 1579; grave stone in red marble for abbot Kolb, by the Zürn brothers, 1637, on the left, next to the pillar.
Castle Amerang, 16th cent., renaissance arcade courtyard, knights hall, lategothic castle chapel, 1530.
Farmhouse museum, 15 objects from the area between Inn and Salzach, 4 ha.
EFA-car museum, nostalgic technology from 1886 to the present day and the worlds largest model train.
Berchtesgaden in Bavaria