Travel Germany: Triberg Germany: Baden Germany

The Black Forest, or Schwarzwald in German, is a 100-mile range of hills in southwest Germany, near France, Switzerland, and the Rhine.  It is a gentle mountain range that happens to be a hiker’s Valhalla.  The forest is thick, which is what led people to call it black.  Back in the day, the Romans described the forest as an impenetrable wilderness, inhabited only by wild beasts and barbarians.  Today, the Black Forest magically attracts tourists year after year as a wonderful place to spend a holiday.  It is famously known as the land of cuckoo clocks and here you can admire the two largest cuckoo clocks in the world! 

The Black Forest

Until the last century, the Black Forest was cut off from mainstream Germany. The poor farmland drove medieval locals to become farmers, glass blowers and clock makers. These small industries, together with forestry, tourism and certain high-tech industries have since formed the backbone of the Black Forest’s economy. The region became accessible by road, rail and it also has an extensive network of walking and hiking trails. There are endless trails and constantly varying terrain – you pass from deep pine woods to open pastures where farmhouses back up on gorgeous hillsides. Tours are now offered “on the trail of the cuckoo clock traders” – following the paths of those who carried the famous Black Forest clocks across Europe centuries ago.

The Black Forest has drawn tourists since the 18th century who are attracted by the contrast of the Rhine Plain and the mountains rising some 4,000 feet above it.  On most Sundays you will find Germans in their traditional, beautifully embroidered, costumes wandering about the Black Forest.  The Black Forest is also very well known as having clean air, and cherry cakes.  Additionally, the central area of the Black Forest is famous for its cuisine, enriched by culinary ideas of Switzerland, Austria and France – it delights lovers of good food everywhere.   Specialties also include, of course, Black Forest ham.  They say that if you’ve ever visited the Black Forest you’ll be bound to return and I cannot wait to return a second time.

Triberg

Triberg is one of the area’s largest tourist traps, but don’t let this keep you from going – it is well worth it.  It is located deep in the Black Forest.  The town is filled with cuckoo-clock shops and is famous for its Gutach Waterfall, which falls 500 feet in several bounces.  You will also find the Black Forest Museum here, which gives you a look at costumes, carvings and the local culture’s traditions, as well as an original workshop with valuable old clocks.

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Where to stay in Triberg?

Well, I cannot offer options here since a friend recommended a hotel to us and that’s where we stayed. I can tell you after staying there that I, too, would highly recommend the Parkhotel Wehrle – it is simply amazing! It was decorated beautifully and most people spoke English. It even has a small, but fully featured, spa. The room was so beautiful and the view even better. Triberg was easily accessible by just stepping out the front door and walking up the street to wonderful shops - when you go, you must visit Bruno Roth and his wife who run a wonderful shop that sells clocks and other woodcarvings – the smokers (wooden carvings of people that open up to be able to place an incense cone inside – when lit and put together, the carvings appear to be “smoking” – okay, sounds corny but they are really adorable – we bring ours out at Christmastime). Continue along the main street to the museum and then...

Some pictures from my trip:

Click thumbnail to view full-size
picture from brochureGutach WasserfalGutach WasserfalGutach WasserfalGutach Wasserfalmain street through townTriberg from base of waterfall
picture from brochure
picture from brochure
Gutach Wasserfal
Gutach Wasserfal
Gutach Wasserfal
Gutach Wasserfal
Gutach Wasserfal
Gutach Wasserfal
Gutach Wasserfal
Gutach Wasserfal
main street through town
main street through town
Triberg from base of waterfall
Triberg from base of waterfall

The Gutach Waterfall tumbles down over seven cascades into the valley – it is a very impressive natural wonder.  It is both the largest and the highest German waterfall.  There is a walking trail that runs alongside the cascades with a couple of pit stop locations and a small wooden bridge that crosses over top of the falls.  It is not an easy climb, but well worth the muscle ache.  I was there in late March and the weather was cold but beautiful – we got almost to the very top of the waterfall but couldn’t quite make it due to ice on the trail at the very top. 

Map of Triberg, Germany

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15 comments

dohn121 profile image

dohn121 7 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

I'm definitely interested in going now! I have tried black forest ham and it's delicious and when I went to Germany in the World Showcase at Epcot Center (Disney World) I didn't want to leave! Thanks!


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 7 years ago from East Coast Author

I highly, highly recommend it - we travelled all over Germany and into Austria and France and it was an amazing trip! Lots of favorite spots!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago

I have always had a curiosity about the Black Forest so I enjoyed your article very much. Thank you for a fine history and travelogue.


Aqua profile image

Aqua 7 years ago from California

Germany is definitely on my travel wish list. I want to see the Black Forest area for sure. I love the picture of the man with the clock on his back!


Jay 7 years ago

Great article. So informative. Never thought of going

to that area till now. Thanks.


Wanderlust profile image

Wanderlust 6 years ago from New York City

Great hub! I spent sometime in Germany, mostly in Berlin, Munich and Cologne. But never been to the Black Forest. I'd like to go back and visit......


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 6 years ago from East Coast Author

During my trip, we didn't have time to get to Berlin, but we did spend a couple of days in Munich, which I loved. However, the Black Forest was my favorite area by far - Triberg and Rothenburg were terrific and I'd go back in a heart beat!

Thanks for visiting!


LRobbins profile image

LRobbins 6 years ago from Germany

I'm headed to the Black Forest for hiking this weekend, so will have to stop off in Triberg. Thanks for the tip. Normally we likely would have just driven through.


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 6 years ago from East Coast Author

Oh, I'm so jealous! I want to go back there so much! Definitely don't miss it - hike up the waterfall, it would be a great hike! Please come back here and let me know what you thought of it when you return...


seebasic profile image

seebasic 5 years ago from Germany

Although I live in Bavaria, but I also like the Black Forest. Really a very beautiful side of our country. By the way, he got his name at a time when he was covered so thick, that no ray of light reaching the ground. Today only the name remains.


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 5 years ago from East Coast Author

Thanks for the comment, seebasic. Bavaria is absolutely beautiful as well. On our trip we also visited Siplingen, the castle at Neuschwanstein, and Munchen (I believe all three are in Bavaria) and it was wonderful. I would love, love, love to return to Germany!


silly me 5 years ago

Great Hub! I'm originally from the Black Forest and can only agree with the things you wrote! Triberg is beautiful. Reading your hub brought back many childhood memories :)


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 5 years ago from East Coast Author

Silly Me - lucky you, being from such a wonderful place! I'm happy that you agree and that I could be a part of bringing back some memories for you! Thanks for stopping by...


vintageglamour profile image

vintageglamour 5 years ago from Toronto

i really want to visit germany. i've become so obsessed


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 5 years ago from East Coast Author

I highly recommend it - you'll be even more obsessed once you've been there. Just make sure you don't miss Triberg and Rotenburg!!

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