The Black Forest is an area on the border triangle of Germany-Switzerland-France and in its vast area you can find plenty of attractions, huge nature reserves, breathtaking views and a variety of other options for the whole family. If you’re already coming to the Black Forest area, it’s worth taking the time and stopping a bit on the way to get an impression of everything the area has to offer. It is also recommended to plan your time so that you can get out of the car and explore the area on foot – the Black Forest area offers many routes and paths that are highly recommended to be explored on foot.
Here are some great suggestions for trips to the Black Forest area, on the way to it and around it:
Cities and villages on the way
The encounter with the small towns and big cities in or near the Black Forest teaches quite a bit about the area. You can stay overnight in them and you can also come for a short visit to soak up the magical atmosphere.
The city of Colmar (Colmar) – many visitors to the Black Forest also stop in this charming picturesque town, which in itself is an attraction that is highly recommended not to be missed. The town of Colmar in the Alsace region of France offers beautiful picturesque views, colorful houses, small and pleasant cafes, narrow and peaceful streets and sights that seem as if they were taken right out of a postcard or a romantic fairy tale. A day trip to Colmar can be enough for all those who stop there, and can enjoy the town and everything it has to offer: wandering the streets, good local food in restaurants and for wine lovers – fine wine tastings. Over the years, the city has changed quite a few hands – between France and Germany, which is very evident in its architectural buildings and in the local food, served in its restaurants, which combines French and German flavors. Colmar is also one of the seventy cities on the wine route and considers itself its capital.
The Alsace region and the city of Strasbourg – The Alsace region, one of France’s regions and also among the most visited, is on the border with Germany and Switzerland and many who plan a visit to the Black Forest usually stop there for a few days, more or less. One of the recommended stopping points in this region is the city of Strasbourg, which in the distant past was under the rule of Germany, which is evident in its buildings and the mixed culture that characterizes it. There is a charming old part of Strasbourg that is worth wandering around and you can if you want to go on a cruise that goes through the city’s canals. The beautiful district – Petite France is also worth a visit if only for the houses in it, decorated in black and white colors.
Freiburg – The city of Freiburg, also known as the capital of the Black Forest or its main gateway, is located in the southwestern part of Germany and is considered a very popular stopping point among many tourists. This is a very old city (founded in 1120), a city that has changed quite a bit over the years. In a city where a lot of emphasis is placed on the issue of environmental quality, there is a great combination of old and new that you can already see while wandering around next to the beautiful architectural buildings. Museums, shops and special galleries and in general – a very relaxed and pleasant atmosphere is exactly the secret of its charm.
Recommended paths and hiking trails
Those who come with children are offered a variety of charming paths, which take the walkers on a route full of magic and adventure. The advantage of these itineraries is the fact that they are also suitable for very small children and they include various surprises and attractions. These paths are not too long nor difficult, but you should reach them with comfortable shoes, drinks and hats.
The Mushroom Trail (Mycelium) – There are quite a few “theme trails” and adventures in the Black Forest, but this one, known as the “Mushroom Trail”, is without a doubt one of the most special ones and an opportunity to present a topic that was not represented at all, or will be represented only marginally. The mushroom trail in the Black Forest offers its visitors many insights into the mysterious world of mushrooms. Large sculptures of various figures and elements, created by the wood artist Thomas Rees McFall, lead the marchers to ten different stations. While walking along the path, little by little, the secrets of the mushrooms are revealed, which do not seem to receive the attention they deserve. This is a path that is part of a new learning model developed in practice for the middle school and high school classes. Travelers from abroad, who come to the trails, can ask for brochures that provide information about the route and the mushrooms and enjoy a wonderful experience. The trail is suitable for all ages and is open throughout the months of the year.
The Wolfspfad – this adventure trail, located near the town of Strittberg, is a peripheral walking route, suitable for all ages and for young children (note: it cannot be reached with strollers). The route is called the Wolf Trail as it provides information about the lives of wolves and also includes attractions and activities relevant to the topic. For those who are tired from walking, a rest area is offered at its southernmost point, where you will find benches to step on, facilities for children and also a lovely view that will add quite a bit to the atmosphere. Although there are no wolves there, despite the topic the track focuses on, there are quite a few wild animals that roam freely in the area.
The magical path in Bernau (Zauberwaldpfad) – in the Taubenmoos nature reserve, not far from the town of Bernau in Switzerland, you are offered a path full of magic, as if taken from the world of fairy tales, a path that is loved by many travelers who come to the Black Forest, including families with children. The total length of the trail is about 2.5 km, and it offers a multitude of figurines of all kinds, more or less familiar characters, elves, fairies, mushroom sculptures, wooden houses and various elements that blend into the forest itself where the trail is located and create a perfect setting that adds a lot to the experience itself. Along the path there are about 15 game stations, stories and also information and the children can enjoy and play at them, sometimes even without the help of the adults. Animals hide for them among the trees and nature – in all its glory.
The Sculpture Path (Schluhuwanapark) – this lovely circular path that ends at the Schluchtsee lake, offers masses of beautiful wooden sculptures along it. Familiar characters from children’s fairy tales, totem poles, various creatures, some of which are also scary and other surprises, you will meet all these and more while walking. The total length of the route is 2.5 km and it is open throughout the months of the year, although it is highly recommended to go there when the weather is warm and pleasant.