T h e B l a c k F o r e s t
No holidays in Germany is complete without a stay in the Black Forest, this wellknown and popular holiday region.
The Black Forest stretches along the banks of the Rhine, which is navigable from Basel to Rotterdam, and it is the source of the rivers Neckar and Donau.
Lake Constance, Switzerland and Alsace / France are just on the doorstep.
In an area 210 kilometres long and 65 kilometres wide, this highland region, with mountain peaks of up to 1,498 metres, offers a wealth of natural beauty with forests, streams and lakes all steeped in legend, a healthy climate and fair
The holiday-maker will seldom find such a unique combination of sheer relaxation and a wide range of cultural activities.
Everywhere in the Black Forest you can indulge in health and fitness activities to your heart's content and enjoy all kinds of fresh-air sport and recreational activity all the year round: there is everything on offer from
hiking to cross-country skiing and mountain biking.
At festivals and events, as well as in the numerous museums, you will find both regional history and local culture, of which the "Bollenhut" hat and the cuckoo clock have become world-famous symbols of this holiday region.
Nor should we forget the cuisine and the fine wine of the Black Forest with their pure mineral waters, fruity spirits and the genuine
"Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte" ( Black Forest gateau).
Folklore and Culture
Everywehre in the Black Forest you will find evidence of a rich and varied history - castles, palaces, churches and monasteries, as well as numerous Especially worth mentioning are:
In the Southern Black Forest
The " Hüsli" museum of local history in Grafenhausen, one of the locations of the german hospital television series
The organ museum in Waldkirch. The bee-keeping museum in the Münstertal
As well as the Vorderösterreichmuseum Endingen at Kaiserstuhl
Landesmuseum für Bergbau (state mining museum) in Sulzburg
The Augustiner museum in Freiburg
But you can also experience local culture at first hand throughout the whole year:
the driving out of the winter during " Fastnacht" (carnival) in February, the Fastnacht and the " Morgenstreich" in Basel;
processions are held in various traditional costumes on religious holidays, summer "Hocks" (social gatherings) and town festivals, cultural evens like the Ettlinger Palace festivals, the Music Pavilion in Freiburg, the wine festivals in autumn to celebrate the new wine and "Zwiebelkuchen" (with onion) and the numerous Chrimas markets in winter.
One the highlights is the Baden-Baden opera -house which was open in 1998 and is one of the largest opera-house in the world.
Wine and Cuisine
The Black Forest is home for the best cooking in Germany, even if we disregard the many stars awarded by restaurant guide.
Local agricultural products have given the cooking its distinctive character.
Game, trout and pine honey suitably round off the culinary range. The mineral waters and the beers are as pure as natural waters.
Delicious juices and fine spirits come from the many fruit varieties like the " Bühler Zweschke" (plum), mirabelles and pears.
Amongst them, the most original is the " Zibärtle " , distilled from a wild plum and only to be found here; the most famous surely is the "Schwarzwälder Kirschwasser " , also an ingredient of the " Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte " .
For a " Vesper " ,- an in-between meal - something more substantial is likely
to be served : " Schwarzwälder Schinken " (ham) , smoked according to the
old recipes, and home-made bread are obligatory, as well as a " Viertele "
(quarter of a litre) of wine from the Baden district.
Wellcome in the Black Forest