10 Lesser-Visited Places in Germany We Can’t Wait to Visit Post-Lockdown

10 Lesser-Visited Places in Germany We Can’t Wait to Visit Post-Lockdown

We’ve pulled 10 of our favourite destinations from Germany’s Top 100. Whether you want to channel the optimism of the Bauhaus school in Dessau, parade about the fairy-tale palaces of King Ludwig II or simply fancy a leg-pumping hike amid glorious scenery, we’ve got you covered.

In partnership withGerman National Tourist Office

lockdown restrictions allow, we’re going beyond the obvious
haunts and seeking out Germany’s lesser-visited locales. Our
compass? The Top 100, a definitive list of Germany’s
most precious treasures, including centuries-old architectural
masterpieces, small (but culture-rich) cities and lush, mountainous
nature trails.

If you’re anything like us, your provisional 2021 travel
schedule is already looking a little tight – too tight for a 100-stop tour of Germany’s under-radar
hotspots, that is. Fret not. We’ve whittled down the list to a tidy
top 10. Whether you want to channel the optimism of the Bauhaus
school in Dessau, let your pent-up imagination run free at the
fairy-tale palaces of King Ludwig II or simply fancy a leg-pumping
hike amid glorious scenery, we’ve got you covered.

Beyond Berlin: 10 of our favourite under-radar destinations in


Pocked by fisherman’s huts slicked in dazzlingly bright lacquers
of paint and set on an archipelago in the North Sea, this charming
little island feels more Scandinavian than it does Germanic. Once a
colony of the Danes and later the Brits, Helgoland today
dances to the beat of its own drum – islanders have a dialect and
traditional dress all of their own. Come here for delightfully
sparse, sandy beaches and a wealth of biodiversity. Twitchers,
bring your binoculars.


France, Switzerland and Austria are always painted as
quintessentially Alpine destinations, but what about Germany? We’re
shunting the obvious crags and rambling our way around Germany’s
portion of Alpine bliss, specifically at Berchtesgaden. It’s the only National Park in
the German Alps, but it has the lot – verdant pastures, meandering
rivers, timid but majestic four-legged wildlife and
Instagram-worthy hiking trails. Strap yourself in, folks.

Speicherstadt Warehouse District

For us, the best bit of a weekend city break is heading out on
aimless rambles, especially if the city in question is home to a
towering great warehouse district like Speicherstadt in Hamburg. These neo-gothic
brick mansions – relics of Hamburg’s industrial past – are now
speckled with characterful museums such as the Automuseum
(petrolheads, here’s looking at you) and the
delightfully kitsch Minitatur Wunderland.

Bauhaus school in Dessau

What could be a better balm for the frustrated craftspeople of
2020 than a visit to the Bauhaus school in Dessau? Just shy of a century ago,
Walter Gropius launched his utopian vision of a new world – one
with quality, handmade crafts at its core – from this iconic
building, not far from Berlin. “Limitation makes the creative mind
inventive,” Gropius once said; how very 2020 of him. We’re heading
here pronto.


Forget timber-clad villages, tumbling flower boxes and
lederhosen-clad locals. The island of Sylt presents an
altogether different perspective on modern Germany. A haven for
some of the country’s wealthiest holidaymakers, this island in the
North Sea (referred to as the Martha’s Vineyard of Germany) is a
go-to spot for recharging drained batteries – so much so that the
legendary Lanserhof is currently building its next spa among the
dunes here.

Linderhof Palace

In our age of mental wellbeing, perhaps we ought to have a
little more sympathy for “mad” King Ludwig II. This, the only
palace he saw through until completion, is like Versailles in miniature – a testament to his
eccentric, creative genius. We’ll admit, the interiors are a little
gaudy for our taste, but from the outside its pure symmetry and
bizarre perspectival tricks of the eye make it look like the
backdrop of a Wes Anderson movie.

Eifel National Park

Over the past decade, the rewilding movement has gained ground
as a slew of climactic crises has forced us to reconsider our
relationship with nature. At the forefront of Germany’s efforts is
Eifel National Park, 110 square kilometres of rugged
woodland with the slogan “let nature be nature”. Expect to spot
Eurasian eagle-owls, black storks and wild cats (small ones, don’t
worry) as you traipse around this timeless nature reserve.


This gloriously baroque city is one for those with a
more-is-more mentality. Beyond the outrageously decadent facades
and countless golden statuettes that survey Dresden,
you’ll find plenty of modern curiosities. For starters, check out
the Pillnitz Castle, where you’ll find a glasshouse designed to
protect a precious, 230-year old flowering camellia, and Touched
Echo, a mesmeric, bone-conduction memorial for the victims of the
famous 1945 bombings.

Medieval Crime Museum

We’re suckers for quirky museums – the more unbelievable, the
better. Old-school goths and those with a penchant for historical
trivia should stop off at Rothenburg’s Medieval
Crime Museum
. An original torture chair made for exorcising
witches, a piggy mask designed for public humiliation and a handful
of ye olde torture racks comprise just some of the gruesome but
compelling artefacts in its collection. This one’s not for the
faint of heart.

Heidelberg Castle

It might be one of the most swarming Renaissance castles in the
world, but, to our shame, we’ve never visited. Onwards to 2021.
Having been fashioned and refashioned by countless German princes
over the past four centuries, this sprawling complex is a real
palimpsest of historical styles. Once you’ve revelled in regal
pomp, get cosy in the castle’s namesake city which is scored by the river Neckar and
dotted with traditional, family-run restaurants. We’re pencilling
it in for Valentine’s weekend.

The Lowdown

To see the full list of Germany’s top 100 sights and
attractions, click here.

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The German Destinations You Need to Have on Radar