Holidays in Germany: where wanderlust comes up – and where you can find lonely dream places

Car instead of plane, Lüneburg Heath instead of Provence, Baltic Sea instead of the Mediterranean: The vacation in summer 2020 will probably be one in many German regions. But that doesn't have to be bad news. Because our country has wonderful corners to offer. FOCUS Online shows where you can spend your vacation in Germany.

Home can also be beautiful: This year many Germans are likely to spend their summer vacation in their own country. In view of a smoldering pandemic, it is rather not in bustling cities and event halls, but away from the masses.

And there is now a glimmer of hope on the home horizon: Holidays in Germany will probably be possible. So: Mecklenburg instead of Mallorca – let's make the best of it. Here are a few serious alternatives to distant destinations and countries. Thick fur is unfortunately still a must, because the bathing temperatures in this country are, well, a little more refreshing than in the Mediterranean.

Chalk cliffs on Rügen instead of White Cliffs by Dover

The white cliffs of Dover (Great Britain) protrude like a fortress towards continental Europe at the narrowest point of the English Channel. Such snow-white, impressive colossi can also be found in Germany: the chalk formation of the Jasmund National Park on Rügen. The highest cliff measures 118 meters to the abyss.

"The chalk coast in the Jasmund National Park is the largest and most important geological outcrop in northern Germany. It represents a cut through 70 million years of geological history. Small and large bank demolitions always cause a sensation," advertises the national park with the world cultural heritage. Casper David Friedrich was inspired here in 1850 to one of the most famous works of art in the Romantic period.

Under the hashtag #virtualruegality, the tourism agency of the island of Rügen already makes you want to travel. Images show pure nature in the Corona crisis, including the famous chalk cliffs at dawn. The beaches of Rügen deserted, the water deep blue. Small minus point: The Baltic Sea never really gets warm, even in August the temperatures are below 20 degrees on average. (advert)

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Lüneburg Heath: Heather blossom instead of Provence

The famous purple herb plunges the Lüneburg Heath into a fantastically bright sea of ​​colors every year from August to September. This looks confusingly similar to the lavender fields in Provence. But unique in the heath landscape: sheep care for the landscape. They keep the shoots about 15 centimeters short, so that they stay tight and bloom beautifully. The famous Heidschnucken can do one more thing: They destroy the cobwebs, so the bees cannot get caught in them.

Animal lovers of all kinds get their money's worth in the Lüneburg Heath. The sheep are now supported by goats. They keep trees such as birch and pine at bay. Not to be forgotten are the Dülmen wild horses, who also maintain the landscape there. A little bit of safari is also included.

Holidays in Germany: Switzerland and its little relatives

Hiking in Switzerland – not only with the Swiss, but also in Saxony, Brandenburg, Franconia or Schleswig-Holstein, for example. Admittedly, they are not really visiting Switzerland, but one of their little relatives: Saxon Switzerland, Franconian Switzerland, Märkische Switzerland or Holstein Switzerland. Many of the countless Swiss people got their nickname because they once reminded Swiss visitors of their homeland.

The lowest common denominator of the Swiss in Germany is probably a beautiful nature in the broadest sense. The holidaymaker can hike, walk and cycle there. It should also be a bit hilly. "Switzerland is clearly positioned as a country: there are mountains there," says Martin Lohmann, head of the Institute for Tourism and Spa Research in Northern Europe. "And if you look for a comparison, you take something that everyone understands." High mountains or not.

Saale-Unstrut: Tuscany around the corner

If you are more in the mood for Mediterranean flair, perhaps a German variant of Tuscany is the destination of choice. There are several of them: in addition to the Uckermark in Brandenburg, the Saale-Unstrut wine-growing region in Saxony-Anhalt is praised as "Tuscany of the North".

However, they did not come up with this description themselves, according to the Saxony-Anhalt tourism agency. The artist Max Klinger said this more than 100 years ago about the area around Naumburg in the extreme southeast of the state.

With their majestic baroque castles, the former duchies of Saxony-Weißenfels, Saxony-Merseburg and Saxony-Zeitz still bear witness to a magnificent past. Cycling and hiking are possible here, but canoeing in one of the many lakes or rivers is also possible.

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Hessen: Where the forest is still lonely

Hessen also invites you to rediscover the forest as a recreation area. The Rheinhardswald in the north of the state attracts as one of the loneliest forest areas in Germany. There is also an idyllic little liquid: the Holzape. Another attraction in Northern Hesse: The Sleeping Beauty Castle Sababurg of the Brothers Grimm is located in Reinhardswald.

In the Hoher Vogelsberg nature park, visitors can also expect rustic, wild and unspoilt nature. The Upper Nidder Valley is advertised as one of the most beautiful valleys.

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Mecklenburg Lake District: Feeling like in Canada

Everyone knows the Mecklenburg Lake District – but why not get to know a coastal bog? That goes east of Graal-Müritz in the Great Ribnitz Moor. A nine-kilometer excursion path with information boards leads through the landscape.

If it should be the lake district, the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Tourism Association recommends the Ivenacker Eichen. They are around 1000 years old and are among the oldest trees in Germany. And the huge Mecklenburg lake landscape is a little reminiscent of the large lakes in North America.

Weserbergland: visit to the wild horses

The Paderborner Land tourism center advertises an “oasis in everyday life” when it comes to the Moosheide. The nature reserve in the Senne in East Westphalia is even less known. It lies in the region of the Teutoburg Forest not far from the border with Lower Saxony, where the Ems originates. However, the special highlight of the Moosheide has hooves – this is where the oldest horse breed in Germany, the Senner wild horses, lives.

Thuringian Slate Mountains Nature Park: Pure river romance in Thuringia

Those who like to be on the water should also like the Thuringian Slate Mountains – Upper Saale Nature Park. Here you can enjoy nature along the Saale, at reservoirs and on ridges. The Hohenwarte reservoir with its 412 meter wide wall is the fourth largest in Germany. For example, animals such as fire salamander, black-footed owl and black stork live in the forests.

Uckermark in Brandenburg: Between beeches and floodplain

Friends of the German forest will have fun in the Uckermark. The idyllic beech forest Grumsin in the Schorfheide-Chorin biosphere reserve is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Brandenburg has a protected flood plain in the Lower Oder Valley National Park. There are many species of waterfowl.

Schleswig-Holstein: landscape like a painting

If you want to see kingfishers, sea eagles and cranes, then the Lauenburg Lakes Nature Park is the place for you. The oldest nature park in Schleswig-Holstein is located south of Lübeck and east of Hamburg and offers an ice age hilly landscape of lakes, forests, meadows and fields – a place of longing for nature lovers.

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Incredibly beautiful: these are the most spectacular landscapes of our republic