Bavaria is a region where individuals either fall in love or renew their love for walking and hiking. “Hiking is Bavaria’s favorite pastime,” states Frommer’s.
“Locals believe firmly in the emotional and spiritual benefits of walking and mountain climbing and tend to hit the trails the moment the snows melt”. Some of Europe’s best trekking opportunities are found in the Upper Bavarian Alps. (If you have read our previous blog posts, the Ettal Abbey, the town of Oberammergau, Neuschwanstein Castle, the Romantic Road and other attractions are located in this area).
The Upper Bavarian Alps offer a selection of trails for both rookie and veteran hikers to choose from. One popular hiking region surrounds Garmisch-Partenkirchen, dubbed Germany’s top “walker’s hub”. From this alpine resort town you can access several mountains in the Wetterstein Mountains. Those looking for leisurely hikes will enjoy the lower slopes of Mt. Eckbauer. Then you can take a cable car to its 1,240m (4,070ft.) tall summit to enjoy fresh buttermilk in an authentic Berggasthof. Famous Mt. Zugspitze (2,962m or 9,718ft) is also a part of the Wetterstein Mountains and is Germany’s tallest peak. Those most seasoned hikers take several hours to several days to climb to the top depending on the route they take. You can also take a cable car to the summit, where you can see over 400 mountain peaks on a clear day. On your way to the top, you can stop for some beautiful walking opportunities, such as a two-hour stroll around the deep blue, glacial waters of Lake Eibsee.
Another hiking region in the Upper Bavarian Alps is Berchtesgadener Land. The area, surrounded by six distinct alpine ranges, boasts well-marked trails for all ability levels. One recommendation is a two to three-hour hike up through Almbach Gorge which passes by a series of vibrant waterfalls and natural pools. You can also visit the only national park located in the German Alps – National Park Berchtesgaden – which offers a plethora of trails from those accessible to wheelchairs and hikes that are two-to-three hours long to eight hour treks and steep climbs.
This does not even scratch the surface of the walking and hiking opportunities in the Upper Bavarian Alps. Whether you want to stroll through a meadow in full bloom, mix culture with the great outdoors or challenge yourself to the ultimate climb, this region has it all. For more information, visit Touchingnature.com.