Travel in Germany: The best secluded hangouts to visit this summer
These ten lesser-known but gorgeous German villages are really a sight to behold.
1. Achkarren am Kaiserstuhl, Baden-Württemberg
Grapes are harvested to make wine in the sunny village of Achkarren. Photo: DPA
If you're a fan of the Mediterranean but looking for somewhere a little different, Achkarren is for you.
The village claims to be one of the sunniest and warmest places in Germany, even referring to itself as the 'Tuscany of Germany'.
It's just a stone's throw away from the Black Forest and, since it's surrounded by hills and vineyards, there is plenty of wine on offer.
The moated castle at Irmelshausen. Photo: Dietrich Krieger/ Wikipedia Commons
The real attraction of this tiny settlement in northern Bavaria is the adorable Wasserschloss (Moated Castle).
The historic round building is perched in the middle of a lake and belonged to the von Bibra family without interruption for 600 years from 1376. It has now been owned by the Stauffenberg family since 1984.
The village also has a large lake nearby, which is safe to swim in.
3. Berchtesgaden, Bavaria
The breathtaking views of Berchtesgaden. Photo: DPA
This village wins the prize for the most breathtaking scenery, since it is to be found in mountainous south Bavaria.
How better to take it all in than with a hike? One route goes past a 200-year-old alpine hut and the Green Lake to the "Jacob’s ladder", which leads up to Funten Lake - the coldest place in Germany. A temperature of minus 45.9C has been measured there before.
Unfortunately, this beautiful place was also a favourite of Adolf Hitler, who had an alpine retreat here.
As well as taking in the magnificent views, mountain sports are also on offer here, from mountain biking to climbing.
4. Tüchersfeld, Bavaria
The awe-inspiring landscape of Tüchersfeld. Photo: DPA
With 251 residents, this absolutely tiny village in northern Bavaria is worth a visit purely for its architecture.
Some of the traditional Fachwerk (timber-framed) houses are nestled into the fingers of steep rock that make up of the local landscape. Not one for sufferers of vertigo!
5. Osterheide, Lower Saxony
The small Fachwerk church in Osterheide. Photo: Oxfordian Kissuth/ Wikipedia Commons
Stepping outside of the typically Bavarian realm of fairy tale villages, Osterheide is situated in the northwest of the country.
The scenic village is filled with history since it was home to two prisoner of war camps during the Second World War, and the unusual stone graves are worth studying. Aesthetically, the tiny Fachwerk church is also particularly sweet.
6. Gimmeldingen, Rhineland-Palatinate
Just a few of Gimmeldingen's 2,500 blossoming almond trees. Photo: DPA
On the surface, this may seem like your standard sweet German village, complete with a mini castle and surrounded by hills and a forest.
But, if you look more closely, you will find a well-preserved ancient Roman underground temple, only discovered in 1926.
This is not the only relic of the Romans, who are credited with bringing almond trees to the village. Almost 2,500 almond trees are now to be found there, making the place especially visit-worthy in the spring when the blossoms arrive. This is an event which is celebrated with an annual festival.
7. Cochem an der Mosel, Rhineland-Palatinate
The castle, houses and river at Cochem an der Mosel. Photo: DPA
Cochem an der Mosel does not disappoint when it comes to striking architecture that makes the most of dramatic, natural scenery.
The houses are sandwiched between the river and the Reichsburg castle which peers down from one of the surrounding tree-covered hills.
According to Cochem's website, the old city walls are also worth visiting - and the village is known for its wine.
8. Keitum, Schleswig-Holstein
One of Keitum's thatched-rooved cottages. Photo: gms/ DPA
If quaint, thatched rooves are more your thing, then head to Keitum, Sylt, in Germany's Frisian islands.
The sea-side village is said to be the "green heart" of Sylt, a getaway for the rich and famous of northern Germany. The village attracts polo players and also has a lively artisan scene.
9. Caputh, Brandenburg
Albert Einstein's summer house, which can be toured by members of the public. Photo: DPA
This lakeside village is where theoretical physicist and developer of the theory of relativity Albert Einstein had his summer house, which is open to the public if you register your interest online.
The large lake is also to be admired, as well as a small palace and a church.
10. Bacharach am Rhein, Rhineland-Palatinate
Fachwerk bulidings in Bacharach am Rhein. Photo: Berthold Werner/ Wikipedia Commons
Though like most of the villages previously listed this village has Fachwerk, wine, hills, forest and a little castle, it just looks especially charming! A picturesque place to stay if you fancy hiking near the river Rhine.