The hidden parts of the Hegau
The Hegau is a very beautiful region to the west of Lake Constance and just north of the Swiss border. Most people will visit the area around Singen, in particular Hohentwiel Castle. However, there are some tranquil, untouristy places in the Hegau region, too. One of them is the arboreous area between Emmingen-Liptingen in the north and Eigeltingen in the south. There's nothing to see there in terms of spectacular sights, but the landscape is incredibly beautiful with lots of densely forested valleys, a few streams, plenty of horses grazing on the pastures in between and little byroads meandering through it. We visited on a warm day in October with all the trees in their spectacular autumn foliage and spent and enjoyable day walking through the forests and taking pictures. As a lot of well-signposted paths run through the area, you'll find something you like, too. Furthermore, given the unique character of the landscape, I suppose that it's similarly lovely in winter, spring or summer. I'll let you know once I've tried it out!Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
Schloss (Castle) Gottesaue
Schloss (Castle) Gottesaue in Karlsruhe has a long and complicated history. Located on the south side of the city it was once the site of a Benedictine Abbey founded in 1094. It had a long and happy history until it was looted and burned down in 1525. A local noble then built a new castle here in 1597. During the Palatine war of succession (1689) this too was destroyed by fire and some repairs were made. Caught fire again in 1735 and rebuilt to house fruit in 1743. It hen was used for over 100 years as an army or police barracks. In 1944 it was destroyed in an air raid. In 1982 it was again rebuilt and became the Academy of Music in Karlsruhe in 1989. Needless to say, the site is a fire hazard historically.Related to:
- Historical Travel
- Castles and Palaces
Schelmenbaum statue in Emmingen
Emmingen ab Egg is a small village on the road from Tuttlingen to Engen (B491). There's nothing to see or do there, were it not for the Peter Lenk statue "Schelmenbaum" ("Fools' Tree" in English).
Known for his provocative pieces of art, Peter Lenk tries to criticise social deficits or shortcomings by building large satirical objects. In many of them, sexual innuendo is more than obvious.The Schelmenbaum is no exception. Built in 2012 under the motto "Climbing, Stealing, Impressing, Thrashing, Groping, Spying", the tree is first and foremost funny to look at: ape-like figures with human heads hanging upside-down or walking along the branches on all fours, all of them with a slightly deranged expression.
However, some of them do seem a bit familiar. One guy resembles Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, a former German politician who fell deep when it was discovered that 93.9% of his doctoral thesis had been illegally copied from other sources. Another person might be Silvana Koch-Mehrin, an FDP politician who also copied huge parts of her doctoral thesis. In other Lenk statues, the German chancellor Angela Merkel, the Pope, and lots of other famous people can be found.
The Schelmenbaum was given to the parish of Emmingen in 2012 without their knowledge of what they would get. This is typical for Lenk: given that he criticises lots of locally famous people and those in power, he assumes that none of the towns would want his pieces of art if they knew who exactly is made fun of in them. So instead he sells them a kind of secret pack which they will only find out about upon unveiling it. The statue is then given to the parish as a loan for two years. Afterwards, the parish decides if it is going to keep it. Normally, they do keep it.
You can find the Schelmenbaum in the middle of Emmingen when you follow B491 through the village. Other Peter Lenk statues can be found in Konstanz, Meersburg, Überlingen or Stockach.Related to:
- Arts and Culture
Fridingen - a nice village in the Danube valley
When cycling the Donauradweg from Tuttlingen to Beuron or further, you do well to stop for a while in the village of Fridingen. It doesn't look too appealing seen from the cycle route, but if you enter the old part of it you'll see lots of beautiful half-timbered houses, some dating back more than 500 years, the so-called Ifflinger Schloss even 700 years. The most famous of them is the inviting-looking Gasthaus Scharfeck (Scharfeck Inn), whose walls are covered with paintings displaying local legends. Among them is that of nearby Knopfmacherfelsen.
Another sight in Fridingen is the Naturbühne Steintäle (Natural Stage Steintäle). High up in the hills above the village is a theatre stage hidden among rocks and trees. An audience of up to 400 people can watch two plays every summer, one for adults, the other for children. Plays have been staged here for more than 50 years. By the way: the stage was built by hand without the aid of heavy plants - the crevasse is too narrow to move the vehicles through it.
Tickets for the shows cost about 8 euros and can be ordered online or by phone. Be aware that sturdy boots are useful as you'll need to walk up a steep hill for some 300m.Related to:
- Theater Travel
This former Cistercian abbey which is almost 850 years old, is considered to be the best preserved and thus most impressive medival abbey north of the Alps. Twelve monks from Alsace began building the abbey in 1147 and for 390 years the monks at Maulbronn lived, built, prayed and worked there.
After the Reformation - and the dissolution of the monastery - Maulbronn became the seat of the Dukes of Württemberg. Duke Christopher of Württemberg arranged for a Protestant monastery school to be established in 1556, which was converted into a Protestant theological seminary in 1807 and still exists today.
It is a UNESCO world heritage site and a truly impressive place!Related to:
Do not come to Pforzheim looking for old buildings or historical monuments. Almost everything here is gone forever. Do come here expecting a pleasant river promenade from where to enjoy the golden light of the sunset.
The "Wutachschlucht" is situated in the South of the Black Forest and is one of the last original wild stream regions in the middle of Europe.
It is 200 m deep and 30 km long and is considered to be the youngest "Canyon" in the world.
The fauna in the "Wutachschlucht" is estimated to have about 10.000(!) different species. The riches of the flora is likewise overwhelming.This is due the coming together of different climatic zones.
During the season guided walks free of charge are offered through the "Wutachschlucht".
- Hiking and Walking
In the Karlsruhe area you can visit the Rhine river - and you will see a huge stream with big ships and enormous bridges crossing the river..
But once you stroll around a little off the beaten path, you will find small lakes and little rivers - the Altrhein (old Rhine). The old Rhine used to meander quite a bit and some 100 years ago, architects straightened it out.
So the meander parts of the old Rhine river wer cut off and are now leading a seperate life.... It is VERY romantic and peaceful to go walking, go on bike tours or even go fishing there!
Ettlingen is just south of Karlsruhe, easily reached by car or tram. It is a beautiful medieval town with a nice palace, half-timbered houses and cobblestone streets.
For more information, please have a look at my Ettlingen page!Related to:
- Historical Travel
- Castles and Palaces
Eggenstein is just north of Karlsruhe. It is a small town - nothing exciting, just very typical: a main street, a church, some shops, some small restaurants and some nice houses along the main street. What makes it special to me, is the fact, that we live here! For more information please have a look at my Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen page!
I only happened to get to know about this place, because my wife tini58de had a concert there with her choir, which I wanted to see and hear.
So I took the opportunity and the camera and looked around this nice little town. Again, nothing spectacular, but very typical!
Östringen is in the north-east of Baden-Württemberg, between Bruchsal and Heidelberg.Related to:
Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen is a small village just north of Karlsruhe - nothing really spectacular, except for the fact, that we live here....
It has a nice little main street with an old church and some nice houses and it has a lot of landscape around...
If you like to see "my tree" throughout the year, do have a look at my Eggenstein page.Related to:
- Family Travel
Indelhausen is situated in picturesque valley of Lauter. Foot and bicycle walks, fine landscapes will satisfy the choosiest traveller.Related to:
- Road Trip
- Travel with Pets
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
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