Found across Germany’s south border with neighboring Austria is the Bavarian Alps, definitely one of the most beautiful areas in the country. Also called the Northern Limestone Alps, Bavarian Alps has ranges that stretch from Eastern Alps, to the north of the Central Eastern Alps. The area covers the alpine regions of Germany and Austria.
It is not surprising that Bavarian Alps is almost always considered a stunning and natural divide cutting across the Austrian border. Mountain ranges in the south of the area are just higher, shooting up from foothills in an abrupt manner, creating a more dramatic impact in the process.
This region is naturally dotted with health retreats, spas and quaint frescoed villages. Needless to say, because of its geography and topography, Bavarian Alps is teaming with several outdoor possibilities, particularly hiking, skiing, canoeing, paragliding and snowboarding. What is more exciting and interesting is that these activities can be enjoyed by all sorts of tourists who come from all over the world, all year round.
The Bavarian Alps is within the territories of Bavaria, a region comprising of Germany’s southeast land. Because of its relatively huge land area, about 70,500 square kilometers, it is undoubtedly the biggest German state in terms of land size. However, the population is not too voluminous at just about 12.5 million. The state’s capital city of Munich is in fact one of the most popular and most toured German cities ever.
To experience how Bavaria is different, make a simple experiment. Walk into any rustic alpine inn in the area. Ask anyone or the innkeeper if he is German. You may be surprised by his answer. Most of the time, any person local to the area will answer a response like, ‘No, I’m a Bavarian.’ Do not be confused as Bavarians are still very much Germans. Bavaria is a German state, though in history the area was more like an independent kingdom in the past centuries, part of the legendary German Reich.
Aside from the Alps, Bavaria also includes Lake Constance and Franconia. The mountainous region, Bavarian Alps, is known for its steep slopes and the genuine hospitality of its people. The locals seem like they are not running out of smiles. Thus, in all of Bavaria, the Bavarian Alps is more like a winter vacationland.
In Bavaria, Munich is practically the key driving gateway. The city has autobahns that directly lead to the famous Bavarian Alps. Tourists who aim to go to Garmisch-Partenkirchen (located at the west of the mountain ranges) should first get to Munich. Those who target the eastern Alps area particularly Berchtesgaden should fly from the nearest airport located in Salzburg, Austria.
How to travel and where to stay
There are other ways to get to Bavarian Alps more safely and conveniently. Be reminded that buses have always been the most effective and cost-saving transport to the alpine area. There are several direct railway routes between major centers in the region. Moreover, if you decide to rent a car and drive, you can take shortcuts in Austria via Oberstdorf, Fussen or Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
As vacationers, you should make sure you could get good and cozy accommodations. Bavarian Alps is mountainous and remote, but because it has been a sought-after tourism and vacation destination, there are just more than enough practically priced and comfortable accommodations. Many hotels, inns and villas levy surcharges of just about €3, especially during peak seasons. If you aim to secure accommodation discounts, you should get into tours, city bus services and special events entries.
What to do
Skiing is the best and most enjoyable activity in the Bavarian Alps. As a matter of fact, most tourists and vacationers come not just for sightseeing but also more for skiing. The best time of the year to ski in the region is within the months of January and February, the height of the winter season, when snow thickly covers areas with ski lifts. If you want to get to the Zugspitzplatt snowfield, you could easily and safely do so during spring or autumn.
In all of the Alps, Berchtesgadener Land is the second greatest ski district. Alpine skiing in the area is facilitated along Rossfeld, Jenner, Hochschwarzeck and Gotschen. Snow condition in the area is most ideal in March during the first three months of the year. In the area could also be found a center for cross-country skiing, natural toboggan runs, curling rinks and ice-skating runs.
What about summers in Bavarian Alps? Tourism is still active this season of the year. If skiing is popular during winter, alpine hiking is most enjoyable and appropriate during summer. Most vacationers come to the region in summer to hike going to Berchtesgaden National Park, which borders Salzburg, an Austrian province.
Genuine outdoor enthusiasts, extreme sports fanatics and adventurers could appreciate the tourist-attractive facilities of Garmisch-Partenkirchen. From there, anyone could start further explorations around the area. For overnight alpine treks, staying in Oberammergau and Mittenwald inns could facilitate enjoyment of outdoor diversions.
How about ballooning? The activity definitely sounds exciting and inviting to any kind of tourists. Who could resist touring the Bavarian Alps in a balloon? The aerial view of the mountain ranges, steeps and slopes could certainly be awesome and magnificent, especially during a hot, summer day. For extreme activities, paragliding and hang gliding could be arranged from the steep slopes in Mt. Jenner.
Where there are mountains, there are rivers and other bodies of water. Thus, some tourists aim to go fishing during their Bavarian Alps vacation. Go fishing for pikeperch, trout and salmon within the rivers of Ramsauer Ache, Hintersee and Konigsseer Ache. For more fun, go white-water rafting or kayaking in rivers Berchtesgadener and Bischofswiesener Aches. The Bavarian Forest has numerous lidos for tourists who like to experience frigid temperatures by swimming in any of the distinct alpine lakes.
Nightlife in the region could surprisingly be interesting. There are numerous cheap and costly bars and restaurants to cater to different types of tourists. The cold weather at nighttime calls for indulgence in some of the best and most popular beer products in the world.
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