Thuringia offers hiking, cycling and winter sports. Be it winter or summer, Thuringia (Thueringen) as a travel destination invites with its diverse countryside of mountains, valleys, rivers, lakes and nature reserves.
Thuringia, the green heart of Germany, is an ideal place for hiking: Breathtaking landscapes with mountains of up to 3,000 feet high, endless lovely meadows and woods, and nature parks such as the Thuringian Forest or the Hainich National Park with its famous treetop trail, captivate visitors with their beauty. Altogether, Thuringia offers 12,000 miles of hiking paths including thirteen certified premium trails. 70 premium hotels along the routes have been certified as qualified accommodations for hikers.
The Thuringian Forest is the largest uninterrupted area of forest in the whole of Germany, and one of the most beautiful low-mountain ranges too. Between the rivers Saale in the East and the river Werra to the west the Rennsteig trail, the most famous one, runs along the entire mountain range. With 1,200 years of history and a total distance of approx. 120 miles, it takes hikers along the ridge of the Thuringian Forest for up to seven days. The Rennsteig Trail and another 6,000 km of well sign-posted rambling trails take you to beautiful spots in the Thuringian Forest at any time of the year. One of the popular spots are Oberhof, the Mecca of Thuringian winter sports, Eisenach with the famous Wartburg Castle, Meiningen with the world-wide known theatre and the Castle Elisabethenburg, the „Toy-City“ Sonneberg, the town of glass-blowing crafts Lauscha, and of course Suhl with the Arms Museum. The unique link between nature and cultural heritage makes hiking in Thuringia extraordinary and unique. In the footsteps of world known personalities such as Goethe or Bach, hikers get to know the German Classics, and German-German history can be experienced whilst hiking the premium path “Point Alpha” along the inner-German border to a former US Army observation post.
Thuringia has also numerous attractive, high quality cycling tracks to meet all the different demands. Cyclists can enjoy tours through a multitude of lovely landscapes along the rivers Werra, Saale, Unstrut or Ilm with little or medium difficulty, or, for the ambitious, along the Rennsteig cycle route, running almost parallel to the famous hiking trail through the Thuringain Forest. Less strenuous are the well-made cycle paths through Thuringia's plains and hills, for example the cycle path “Thuringian town chain”.
Many tracks lead not only through lovely landscapes but also through picturesque villages and historic towns and pass touristic attractions.
And did you know that you can learn ski jumping in Thuringia and that you can enjoy an exciting run in a bob sleigh down the icy canal like a professional, in the town of Oberhof? Those used to be almost kept-secret insider pursuits.
Thuringia as a travel destination in the very centre of Germany is surely also worth a visit during the winter season. The first snow usually falls in the middle of November. The number 1 among the ski sports is cross country skiing. Be it leisurely on ski tours or professionally along prepared loipes – the choice is all yours and nearly limitless. A total of 1,555 km of ski trails and 203 km of loipes are available to you. They will take you across the mountains and valleys of Thuringia, the Rhön region, over mountain Inselsberg in the Rennsteig area and across to the Thuringian Slate Mountains.
Information and brochures on the holiday state of Thuringia, accommodation and travel programmes, event infos, tickets and last-minute offers are available from the Tourist Information Thuringia on the hotline +49 (0) 361-37420 or on the internet at www.thuringia-tourism.com.
Opening hours: 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays
Interesting to know:
1700 kilometres of long-distance cycle trails and many regional routes criss-cross Thuringia. They also include 13 attractive long-distance links for visitors on two wheels.
Interesting to know:
The Thuringian “Premium Trails” lead to all the Thuringian hiking regions – the Thuringian forest, the Thuringian Rhön region, the Thuringian Schiefergebirge mountains, Thuringian Vogtland, Hainich National Park, the Kyffhäuser mountains, the Harz region and the Eichsfeld region.