Picture opening a book and not just any book but a fairytale extravaganza. A book full of magical stories, picture-perfect castles, and charming little European towns. That’s how I would describe a morning in the city of Triberg, Germany. As the sun rises, it projects bright rays onto the mountains, giving life to the village around. With the daylight, everything comes to life. Now the buildings and trees covered in snow sparkle and the ground shimmers due to the thin ice. Life continues in this magical town, creating new fairytale stories to tell.
Although small and unfamiliar to most tourists like me, this town brings a lot of unforeseen surprises. First, this town is home to Germany’s largest waterfall, and although it doesn’t look huge in photos, trust me, it is. There are three entrances to this attraction. First entryway is at the top of the mountain, second is in the middle of the mountain, and the final entrance is located in the town center. However, the first two passages are closed during the winter months due to snow and ice. With the winter conditions, it’s quite dangerous to hike the top two entryways. The only open pathway to the waterfall is from the town center. From the bottom, you get to see the two upper bridges, crossways, and hiking trails around this town.
The second surprise was this town is a hiker’s dream. Maybe it’s not full of hard, strength required hikes like the troll’s tongue in Norway. It does, however, have many picturesque and historic hikes around. The first hike or the first three hikes that I can think of go around the town of Triberg. They are called Rundwege/circular walks. The first circuit is a 45min walk called the cascade trail (in german Kaskadenweg.) It’s a simple stroll to give you a glimpse of the waterfall and town. The second hike is the culture trail (Kulturweg) is a 60min walk. This walk takes you around the most significant and historical places of Triberg. The last track, is the Nature Trail (Naturpfad), it’s the longest out of the three. It takes 90min to complete. During this walk, you’ll hopefully see owls, squirrels and get a good look at the town from above.
The third surprise is the historic railroad hike, a hike that takes you back in time. A time where once was a railroad that connected towns and cities together. This hike shows you fragments of the old rails and the new scenic railway (that’s very busy with passing trains.) During this excursion, you’ll stop at numerous points of interest, such as station 5, station 6, and so on. The beginning of this hike is a bit strenuous, a steep walk up the hill. However, once you reach the top, a beautiful view of Schwarzwald valley and station number 3 unfolds in front of you. Continue this hike stopping at each station and taking some fantastic photos. You can complete this walk as a circuit, or continue forward to other trails. At every station, there is a map to show you where you are and how long you have left to complete this hike. As well as the map shows you other hiking trails.
Triberg was a surprising discovery. It’s a town that seems to have it all. Excellent hiking on the doorstep of your hotel, Germany’s highest waterfall (also a great hike during the warmer months), the black forest museum is here as well.
P.S To enter: this hike has many points of entry. We began our journey right across from the world’s largest cuckoo clock. The parking lot that faces the mountain has a small and very hidden passageway that goes behind the white abandoned building that faces the cuckoo clock shop.
Other activities to do:
Other surprises you can find in this town: Triberg isn’t only good for hiking. It has many other great attractions. Visit the black forest museum, and see the Triberg-Land-interactive model system (a medium train system.) An excellent activity for kids and free entrance with the waterfall ticket. As well as stop by the World’s largest cuckoo clock and ride the black forest railway- considered one of the most beautiful mountain railways in Europe. It’s also the railroad you’ll see on your hike through the old stations.
One of the main attractions of this area is the world’s largest cuckoo clock, only a five-minute drive (or hike) from this town. This town is perfect and a great place to spend the night and enjoy all that it has to offer.
All the other activities must cost money? Well, not necessary if you stay at one of the many hotels in Triberg, you will get a free admission/discounts to most attractions around. Make sure to inquire about this at your hotel. As well as this town is tiny, and everything is within walking distance. Therefore you won’t need to worry about driving your car or paying for parking.
Most hotels in the area are very cozy and have excellent services. We stayed at the Best Western Plus Hotel. This hotel was everything we had hoped for and needed. The room was cozy, with a large balcony and a stunning view of Triberg. Also, in the room, we found complimentary instant coffee, tea, and a bottle of water. The hotel also has a pool and a sauna, let me tell you after a long hike that’s the best medicine. The best part about this stay was the breakfast, include in your nightly rate. A buffet-style, eat as much as you can and drink coffee as long as you can. A great hotel and a lovely experience.
What to bring:
I recommend bringing a few items with you, such as a cooler. Yes a cooler, to store water and snack in your car/hotel room. This town is small, and everything closes very early except for a few pubs. Having a backup supply of water and a tasty snack bar is a must. If you decided to go on one of the picturesque hikes, bring a selfie stick or a good camera with a tripod to capture the passing by trains. I personally like this selfie stick and this camera (plus accessories.) Other items to bring: make sure you have good water proof shoes and a backpack for water.