Pfaffenwinkel region of Bavaria is rather compact. It forms almost a square with a diameter of approx. 40 km. Peißenberg is located at the more northeastern part of this region. Nevertheless, many of the gem churches of the region are in easy reach, less than one hour drive from Peißenberg. I have visited many churches during my short stay in the region and will write separately about most of them.
The ones in easy reach of Peißenberg are:
Hohenpeißenberg with a marvellous view and church Maria Himmelfahrt (8 km to the west),
Rottenbuch, with former monastery (15 km to the southwest),
Steingaden with Wies Church and the marvellous former monastery church in the town of Steingaden (30 km to the southwest),
Schongau town and church Maria Himmelfahrt (25 km to the west),
Hohenfurch with church Maria Himmelfahrt (27 km to the northwest),
Altenstadt with the Romanesque Basilica St. Michael (25 km to the west),
Sachsenried with the beautiful church St. Martin (30 km to the west),
Wessobrunn with a former monastery (12 km to the north).
© Ingrid D., October 2011 (So please do not copy my text or photos without my permission.)
Pilgrim church Maria Aich is located quite a bit off the centre of Peißenberg but definitely well worth a visit. A small chapel was built here during the time of Thirty Year War, to have a place where the locals could find peace and confidence. Soon the word spread that the statue of St. Mary did miracles, and it became a destination for pilgrimage. In 1731 a new, bigger, church was being built, the one of today. Stucco artist Johann Schmuzer from nearby Wessobrunn was responsible for the interior and local painter Matthäus Günther made the frescoes. They are all featuring St. Mary with a big painting of her on a chariot in the centre of the ceiling, surrounded by four archangels who fight against vice, heresy, war and pest, sin, death and devil. According to the description the painting above the altar shows St. Mary with the four continents known at that time: Europe, Africa, Asia and Americas. But it is difficult to see them from the iron bars which close the church from visitors outside of mass time.
Nevertheless, this church is well worth the visit, especially in sunny weather when the colours inside will come to full life. It was a bit cloudy when I was there.
No entrance fee but it would be nice to leave a small donation in the box.
I was there at approximately noon time (on a Wednesday). The church was open, but as mentioned, can be seen only from behind the iron bars. For more photos of the interior please look at the ones of a Flickr user, who was obviously inside and behind the bar.
Location of Maria Aich Church on Google Maps.
© Ingrid D., October 2011.
I came to Peißenberg by car so I had all the freedom to come and go as I liked and to zigzag through the region as I liked. But although public transport is quite good in the region (Pfaffenwinkel), it would be impossible to see all the sights I have seen by bus, including this church in Peißenberg.
Direction by car:
Leave road 472 at the roundabout direction Peißenberg. Take a right just behind the gas station and supermarket Norma. Take the next possible street to the right and you will see the church already in the distance. It is a “u” kind of drive. Drive back the same road, otherwise you get lost in the maze of several one-way streets.
Peißenberg is located at the train track line Augsburg – Weilheim – Schongau and has two train stations, both in the northern parts of town: Peißenberg Hauptbahnhof (main train station) and Peißenberg-Nord. As far as I could see on Bahn.de website, trains stop at both stations. Trains from Weilheim are one per hour and it takes 10 minutes, trains from Schongau are also hourly and take 20 minutes. Total train journey from Munich (with train change in Weilheim) is a bit less than one hour.
Location of train station Peißenberg Hauptbahnhof (main train station) on Google Maps,
Location of train station Peißenberg-Nord (P. North train station) on Google Maps.
Given the good train connections, busses are maybe not the best option to reach Peißenberg. There is only one bus bus no. 9656 which goes between Weilheim, Peißenberg, Hohenpeißenberg, Peiting, Schongau and back.
To reach Maria Aich church by train, the stop Peißenberg Nord is most probably the best option. Nevertheless it is a 1,7 km walk, according to Google Maps. From main train station it is 2,2 km. See above screenshots for the distances.
© Ingrid D., October 2011.