Here's Why Germany Should Be Your Next European Destination in 2018

Here’s Why Germany Should Be Your Next European Destination in 2018

If you haven't visited Germany before, it's about time you added it to your travel list.

Germany. Where do we even begin? Its vast expanses offer the full works, from sweeping mountain ranges and verdant woodlands for the nature enthusiast to medieval castles and towns to provide the history buff with a packed itinerary. It’s also known for its iconic cuisine, and no, we’re not just talking about beer and sausages, but comfort foods such as Maultaschen and Schnitzels too.

There are just so many reasons why Germany deserves a visit – if the rich melange of Teutonic culture, turbulent history, picture-perfect sceneries, spectacular architecture, and delicious cuisine has not quite convinced you that Germany should be your next European travel destination, then this overview of its splendid offerings might just have you saying ‘Hallo Deutschland’ in no time!

Start your trip planning with amazing flight deals from Wego to Berlin and tons of hotel options in the city using Wego’s nifty search functions.

Create your own fairytale with romantic road trips

From quaint timber-framed houses in medieval towns to splendid castles soaring lonesome above thickly-wooded forests, the Romantische Straße – or Romantic Road – describes a quintessentially Germanic journey embodying Romance with a capital R.

Spanning the Bavarian towns of Würzburg and Füssen, the road trip is a scenic introduction to Germany’s Southern provinces. There’s historic Augsburg and postcard-perfect Rothenburg ob der Tauber to visit as you traverse Franconian vineyards and on towards the dreamlike Pfaffenwinkel region. Finish the 400 km journey with its blockbuster highlights: King Ludwig II’s captivating Schloss Neuschwanstein and his childhood home, Schloss Hohenschwangau.

Hohenschwangau and the Schwansee | Image credit: Dmitry Karyshev

If the Neuschwanstein looks like it was lifted straight off the pages of a Brothers Grimm fairytale, you’re not too far from the truth. After all, it was conceived from the imagination of the ‘Fairy King’, who had an immoderate passion for the operas of Richard Wagner, the masterworks of German Romanticism.

Want to marvel at many more gems of the Germanic lands? Come romance not only Munich and Füssen, but also neighbouring Austria on this Jewels of Romantic Europe tour with Let’s Go Europe!

Also Read: Germany’s Romantic Road: A One-Week Itinerary

Marvel at the splendour of the Black Forest National Park

Image credit: Timo Newton-Syms

Pressed closely together in oppressive thickets, the looming canopy of evergreens gives the Schwarzwald, or Black Forest, its ominous name. Yet the sprawling region in Baden-Württemberg is really the perfect setting for an enchanting bedtime story. Covered over in dense woodlands, the dramatic landscape is complemented by the towering peak of Feldberg, all while the magnificent roar of the Triberg Falls rings out by the cirque lakes of the Titisee and Schluchsee.

Sporting characteristically German Fachwerkhäuser, the region’s quaint towns are also charming elements contributing to the Forest’s magical atmosphere. Baden-Baden is an old-world spa town known for its curative waters, while offbeat Calw is also the region’s loveliest town.

The sunny university town of Freiburg contrasts starkly against red-sandstoned Heidelberg; a little way off the Forest, the city is home to Germany’s oldest university and arguably its most romantic cityscape. You’ll never find a more magnificent sight than the Königstuhl mountains bolstering the Heidelberg Castle as it stands guard over all the town and the River Neckar.

Image credit: Tourismus Marketing Baden-Württemberg (top), Gutach im Schwarzwald (bottom)

As you follow the Forest’s various adventure trails, remember to take generous bites out of the region’s world-famous Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte, more popularly known as the Black Forest Cake. Infused with the area’s speciality liquor, the cake’s Morello cherry toppings are said to resemble the red poms-poms adorning the Bollenhut, a traditional headdress worn by unmarried women of the Black Forest villages.

The Grimm fairy tales, as we know them, were mostly German folklore compiled, published and brought to international attention by the brothers. Come find Little Red Riding Hood in Kassel, visit the town of the Pied Piper, Hamelin, and even see Sleeping Beauty’s castle on this fairy tale tour with Let’s Go Europe!

There’s so much more to German cuisine beyond Bratwurst and Bier

Image credit: Lendog64

On first impression, German cuisine seems mildly interesting at best, with staples including varieties of Wurst, Brot, Kartoffeln and a whole lot of Bier – that is, sausages, bread, potatoes and beer. But as with any cuisine, a sweeping glance at the nation’s culinary landscape never quite cuts it. Simmering under all that Sauerkraut is a smorgasbord of (meat-heavy) regional specialities representative of the rich cultural heritage underlying the Germanic states.

Image credit: Seph Swain

Perennial homespun favourites include Spätzle and Maultaschen, a type of Swabian egg pasta and ravioli respectively. Then there’s the familiar Schnitzel, dressed in German sauces. Roll bacon, onion, mustard and pickles together in slices of beef or veal and you’ll have Rouladen. Then finally, top off your meal with Rote grütze, or red-fruit pudding served with vanilla cream.

Image credit: LWYang

Even the humble Wurst is treated to a series of regional innovations in Germany (more than 1500 in total!). The thick Bavarian Weißwürste, or white veal sausage, is contrasted against the skinny 600-year-old Thüringer Rostbratwurst. Offal-filled varieties include Blutwurst (pig’s blood) and Leberwurst (livers), while, thankfully, the ubiquitous Currywurst numbers among more familiar takeaways.

Image credit: Tomasz Baranowski

The staggering volume of beer guzzled down at the annual Oktoberfest certainly doesn’t help the stereotype concerning Germans and their beer. Like the Wurst, Bier in Germany is a thing of regional pride – sample an array of Pilsners, wheat beers and other lagers at local pubs or Biergartens (beer gardens). While they may have to concede to the French when it comes to wine, the Germans also produce a mean Riesling or Pinot Noir.

Drooling already? Kickstart your German adventure with exclusive flight deals from Wego to Berlin and affordable hotel options all around Germany using Wego’s fuss-free search tools.

Also read: Blend in like a Local: These 10 German Weird Food & Drinks You Must Try

Explore various cities boasting a rich and tumultuous history

The presence of the past is certainly palpable in this nation so deeply shaped by momentous periods in human history. For one, Northern Germany was once the hotbed of activity for the powerful Hanseatic League, a confederation of merchant towns that dominated European commerce and trade from the 13th to the 15th century. The legacies of the League are still found in cities like Lübeck and Hamburg.

Lübeck and Hamburg

It’s pure industrial glamour at the Speicherstadt

Nicknamed the ‘Queen of the Hanse’, Lübeck is a provincial riverside town whose remarkable cityscape has since been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its medieval ambience contrasts against the maritime bustle of Hamburg, a city which continues to flaunt its heritage as the League’s leading trade centre through gloriously vibrant neighbourhoods, flanked by a multitude of ports and docks.

Visit Norwegian islands and even Cinque Terre at Miniatur Wunderland! | Image credit: Miniatur Wunderland Hamburg

Interlaced by long narrow canals, the contiguous gabled warehouses of the Speicherstadt in Hamburg makes for a spellbinding sight in twilight. Miniatur Wunderland houses the world’s largest miniature model railway (no contradictions there!), taking you through fascinatingly intricate replicas of varied countries and continents. Sporting exclusive admission for wheelchair users and highly disabled visitors, the attraction is also a prime example of Germany’s commitment to barrier-free travel.

Nuremberg

If Miniatur Wunderland is the world in miniature, then historic Nuremberg is indubitably the time capsule of Teutonic history. The looming Nuremberg Castle counts among the finest examples of medieval fortifications, and is a constant reminder of the city’s importance in the Middle Ages as the de facto capital of the Holy Roman Empire.

The city was also the centre of the German Renaissance in the early modern period and rolling on into the early 20th century, it was the chosen site for the Nazi Party’s infamous Nuremberg Rallies. Post-World War II, it was also the location of the Nuremberg Trials. The site of both golden and dark ages in Germany’s long history, a trip to Nuremberg is a singular lesson through Teutonic prehistory to the present.

Berlin

Once a divided city during the Cold War, Berlin will forever be an enduring symbol of defining periods in the 20th century. Steeped in history, places like the Berlin Wall Memorial and Checkpoint Charlie are visceral reminders of a more recent past, while the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe and the Topography of Terror, although stretching further back in time, continue to teach visitors some of history’s hardest lessons.

Image credit: visitBerlin (Scholvien, Wolfgang) (bottom left), visitBerlin (Adenis, Pierre) (bottom right)

Despite its storied past, however, modern Berlin is a bohemian haven for aspiring artists and cutting-edge thinkers. With inexpensive accommodation and affordable street food, the capital sports a youthful vibe complemented by its provocative graffiti – check out Dmitri Vrubel’s iconic My God, Help Me to Survive This Deadly Love, for example. Berlin is also where street art coexists with gems of ancient civilisations; the mesmerising Nefertiti Bust and the monumental Ishtar Gate of Babylon can be found in the museum complex on Museum Island.

There is indeed no better place than the capital to begin your whirlwind adventure through Germany. Before you dive headlong into everything the nation has in store for you however, remember to bag exclusive flight deals from Wego to Berlin and affordable hotel accommodations options in the city using Wego’s snazzy search tools. Plan your itinerary using the wonderful wealth of information to be found at www.germany.travel, which includes much-needed resources on barrier-free travel for the elderly and the disabled, as well as green, sustainable travelling for the eco-conscious tourist.

Up and ready to go? Then there’s only one thing left for us to say: Viel Spaß in Deutschland!


Brought to you by Wego and German National Tourist Board

About Author

Shawn Lim
Shawn Lim

If not wandering among inky serifs seeking le mot juste, you can find Shawn wandering through half-deserted streets, attending closely to the rhythms of everyday life. A big culture junkie, his first stops in a city are always its museums and cultural centres. Otherwise, he will be in cafés measuring life out in (literal) coffee spoons, all the while divining in the passing crowd images of a city, a culture, a nation.

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