Great German Holiday Destinations – Thuringia
Thuringia is in the heartland of Germany. With the Harz mountains at the states northerly point and green, dense forests across the middle of the region, Thuringia offers visitors some of Germany's most diverse geography
Historically Thuringia was split into small Duchies when the ruling Saxon house bequeathed land to the male heirs. Wanting to beat their rivals, the Dukes brought poets, painters, and musicians to the area. Their legacy was art and over the years Thuringia has attracted some of the worlds greatest artists. Johann Sebastian Bach, Goethe, and Schiller all made the state their home where they drew inspiration from the stunning countryside.
Nestled within the sleepy state are some wonderful places to visit. Here you'll find a relaxed Germany where you can peer back to a Germany pre the Iron Curtain. The winding country roads meander enabling you to take in the scenery between towns. There are museums and historical points of interest to visit but equally, Thuringia offers a get-away-from-it-all to cyclists and walkers. The variety of attractions on offer in the state is as diverse as the geography.
Outside the National Theatre stands a bronze statue of Goethe and Schiller. Weimar was where they both chose to live so naturally there are museums in Weimar to celebrate the lives of these two great men.
The Schiller Museum is situated at the side of Schiller's house. The museum has three large rooms which are used to exhibit the works of contemporary artists.
Goethe House was home to Goethe for the last portion of his life. Various rooms have been preserved as they were when he lived there.
There are in excess of 28 museums in the area reflecting the historical significance of the Weimar culturally.
The Rennsteig trail is famous across Germany. It cuts through the Thuringian Forest from east to west. It was once a route for messengers in the middle ages which passed through the uplands to the River Saale. Thuringians on either side of the trail argue over their sausages with each area convinced that theirs are the best. These days hikers often complete 'Der Runst' which takes them on a five-day hike stopping at villages along the route.
In the winter the snow fall turns the area into a ski destination. The Grosser Inselberg piste brings tourists to the area in the colder months.
Erfurt is the capital of Thuringia. It is the largest city in the state but small in comparison to many others across the country. You can walk across the city in twenty minutes leaving you plenty of time to sample some of the city's restaurants.
The city was home to Martin Luther and his influence can be seen everywhere. The medieval architecture adorns the streets of the old quarter. You can visit the cathedral, ancient abbey and many of the churches. Hailed as the city of ninety spires in medieval times, Erfurt is steeped in history.
Eisenach was the birthplace of Johann Sebastian Bach and visitors can follow his footsteps around the town.
It is home to the Wartburg, probably the most famous castle in Germany. At 1000 years old, Wartburg oozes history out of every medieval pore. It was where Martin Luther sought refuge and was the castle which inspired Wagner to compose Tannhaeuser.
In Eisenach, you will find a wealth of museums, monuments, and galleries. There's an automobile museum celebrating the towns car making history and the Alte Malzerei the oldest jazz club in East Germany.
For walking holidays to cultural breaks, Thuringia is an ideal holiday destination. There is something for everyone in the green heart of Germany.