The Magic of Germany in the Winter
Are you thinking about visiting Germany this year?
It’s is a beautiful place to visit during any time of year, but winter is thought to be Germany’s most magical season. The temperature stays pretty comfortable, but the mountains and forests are covered in a blanket of pure, white snow.
If you enjoy sledding, snowshoeing, skiing, or hiking in breathtaking outdoor spaces, Germany in winter should definitely be on your bucket list. From early November until the end of December, all of the little towns, hamlets, and even the big cities are covered in Christmas lights.
Lifesize nativity scenes are everywhere, and roadside vendors offering everything from locally made crafts to hot mulled wine. This country loves Christmas markets, and you’ll find dozens of them to visit during your stay.
So, are you ready for an unforgettable getaway to Germany this winter? If you need a visa, look into scheduling consulate of Germany visa appointments in a city near you. It’s even possible to book an appointment on short notice if your trip is last minute! Let’s take a look at the most beautiful places to see in Germany during the winter to help you plan your visit.
The city of Dresden sits on the banks of the Elbe river. It’s famous for its dramatic resurrection after being severely damaged during the fighting in World War II. The city now resonates with dazzling beauty, but its rise from the ashes remains tangible.
In wintertime, Dresden comes to life with stalls selling hot mulled wine, ice skating, and festive Christmas markets. The main market is held in the towering old town square and is recognized as the oldest Christmas market in the entire country. It’s rebuilt from the ground up every winter season and has an appearance that’s more like a tiny village than a temporary market.
Although there are many markets spread throughout the area, another favorite is the Medieval Market. It’s held in the courtyard at Stallhoff, which is used for jousting tournaments at other times of the year. The vendors at this market wear traditional, medieval garb and serve food from that era, often cooked over an open fire.
You’ll find sweet hot whiskey brews, honey mead, and glühwein (hot spiced wine) being served throughout the Medieval market. If you’re up for it, you try your hand with a bow and arrow or take a soak in one of the wooden barrel hot tubs… as long as you’re not too modest!
Kreuzberg is absolutely stunning mid-winter. It’s like a winter wonderland, and it’s the perfect setting for romantic walks in the snow. After you take in the incredible scenery, you can head to the cozy, warm monastery where lunch and a mug of beer are both delicious and affordable.
Kreuzberg monastery has been making and serving incredible beer for centuries. And, the onsite café offers typical German fare to go along with it. Kreuzberg is the perfect place for sledding in winter, but it also offers fantastic hiking in summer if that’s more your speed.
Cochem sits right on the Moselle River, halfway between Frankfurt, Cologne, and Trier. No matter what time of year you visit Germany, be sure to put this medieval town on your itinerary. It’s an especially lovely stop in winter when there’s a dusting of snow and beautiful Christmas decorations in every window.
The winding streets of Cochem are adorned with Germany’s iconic half-timbered houses. You’ll also find a quaint Christmas market in the weeks leading up to the holiday. There’s even a festive little Christmas train that makes its rounds through the town.
Of course, you’ll want to visit all the lovely shops and roadside stalls for mementos and gifts before you head into one of the local restaurants for a cozy meal by a roaring fireplace. There’s even a stunning hilltop castle with a guided tour that’s absolutely wonderful.
The views of the river and the town from the castle are simply breathtaking! But, if you want to see even more stunning views, be sure to take the chairlift to the lookout point on the hill opposite to the castle.
Even though Munich is most often associated with Oktoberfest and beer halls, it’s also a lovely place to visit in the wintertime. Wander the streets and pop in and out of museums to stay warm and visit the Munich Residenz to see the gloriously lavish holiday décor at the Palace.
Don’t miss the stunning glow in Kings Square as the sun goes down. You can ice skate (or just watch the skaters) in front of Nymphenburg Palace, then head out back to the dormant gardens for a snowball fight before you pop inside for a beer.
Although Munich is a beautiful city all year long, it’s especially memorable when it’s covered in snow. The city is quieter in wintertime, too, which is more pleasant for a relaxing visit. There’s still lots to do, and most places are easy to walk to.
If it’s too cold for walking, there’s a bus and a train that will get you where you want to go in comfort. Since it’s so quiet, you can enjoy the sites more. You might even feel like you’re the only ones around at times.
Heidelberg is known to be one of the most beautiful cities in Germany, and it’s also one of the most romantic. Wintertime is exceptionally beautiful because the city is nestled into a lovely scenic spot right on the Neckar River, in between two mountains.
If you visit Heidelberg, be sure to take a romantic walk along its cobbled and colorful alleyways. Or, stroll the river’s edge and look at the pastel roofed buildings across the river. Sadly, much of Germany was destroyed during World War II, but Heidelberg still has much of its late Medieval and early Renaissance architecture intact, which adds even more to its romantic charm.
The undisputed main attraction in Heidelberg is the historical, legendary, and picturesque castle that sits high above the oldest parts of town. You can look up at it from the Christmas markets as you shop down below. There are plenty of romantic cafes where you can warm up from your adventures too.
If you are thinking about vacationing in Germany, consider a wintertime visit. Between the snow, the mountains, the cozy cafes, and the Christmas markets, it truly is magical. And, you’ll find that with the abundance of public transportation and well-maintained roads, it’s easy to get wherever you want to go.