The authors of BZ write about their favorite places in Baden-Württemberg: travel

Six places, six stories: six BZ authors have written what else there is to discover in Baden-Württemberg. Because everyday escapes are also possible in your home.

Where is it more beautiful? In Baden or in Württemberg? This would be a great argument if it weren’t simply: it doesn’t matter. Because travelers are said to be open without limits, even for discoveries at hand. We have chosen six.

… in Württemberg

Lots of stories on a ladder in Schwäbisch Hall

The cobblestones of Schwäbisch Hall are uneven and the enemy of leather-covered heels. The well-preserved half-timbered houses are lovingly furnished and the banks of the Kocher River, which meanders idyllically between the rows of houses, attract young people to sit and “Raatscha” after work. The people of the city, which is located in northeastern Franconia, are sociable, but also traditional and committed.

And they love their grand staircase, which leads over the historic market square to the church of San Michele. Between 1507 and 1510, busy craftsmen built it eight meters high and 46 wide with 54 steps. It is quite steep and every summer is a spectacular setting where filmmakers create unusual theatrical images. For nearly a century, the Grand Staircase has been the best-known location for the Open Air Hall Theater.

In the past, only classics such as Jedermann were on the program, today there are also modern plays and musical theater. In each production, the actors and actresses walk, run and dance up and down the steps as if it were all child’s play. I can imagine it being incredibly difficult, since every single step is so tight that my foot – in shoe size 39, positioned lengthwise and pointing towards the market square – barely fits on it. I try it every time I am in Schwäbisch Hall. My starting point is always the top step in front of the church portal and right there in the middle. I put one step ahead of the other, more cautious than daring. In the middle, I stop and look: in front and below, the baroque town hall stretches upwards, to the right and left are the sometimes surprisingly colorful town houses. No wonder the pleasant Marktplatz complex is one of the most photographed spots in this fascinating city. (Ulrike Ott)

What does the Limes Wall have to do with Asterix and Obelix

What connects the Swabian town of Welzheim with the Gallic village of “Asterix and Obelix”? The Romans camped near both places. Fortunately, the people of Welzheim no longer have to brew a magic potion to defend themselves against an unwelcome neighbor. The two forts, located about 40 kilometers east of Stuttgart, are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site “Germanic-Rhaetian Upper Limes” – a majestic 550 kilometer long border wall that was once intended to protect the Roman Empire from his enemies.

“Fantastic,” I thought to myself as a boy who borrowed and devoured every volume of Asterix in the city library. I will probably never come close to Bacillus, Hohlenus, Nichtsalsverdrus and all the other comic Romans, which are probably somewhat inaccurate historically. Angered by their son’s sudden interest in history, my parents planned a weekend out of town. And it was worth it. One of the highlights of this section of Limes is the eastern fort with the reconstruction of the original size of the western gate. The two towers with a gable roof, set in a stretch of border wall, look like the scenography of a monumental film. A replica of a fountain and stone slabs marking the excavated buildings inspired the imagination of a Roman-loving boy doing somersaults.

The significantly larger western fort, some 530 meters away from the eastern fort, has been almost completely rebuilt. It was said that 500 to 1000 legionnaires were stationed there, including a cavalry unit. The Welzheim Museum displays excavated finds, which complete the excursion into the world of the Romans. Incidentally, Asterix never had the pleasure of visiting the eastern fort. The imaginary Gallio lived his adventures around 50 BC, the Limes was created in the 1st century AD (Stefan Mertlik)

Between construction site juggernaut and princely opulence: Stuttgart
Ah, Stuttgart. You of the most afflicted rural countries. Much maligned, grinning car hell for traffic turnaround, rail yard colossus and number one enemy of the people of Baden. But. Spoiled like no other in the country by beautiful park landscapes, which princes and kings snatched from the corrupt people. It is not just the five kilometers of parkland from the central station to Wilhelma am Neckar. There are the wonderful forests and parks around the Bärenschlössle to the north. Drive there, you may find a parking space.

Like the Trollinger, the expansive structures are a pearl that the Swabians love to keep to themselves. It was created by Duke Carlo Eugenio (pronounced Ai-gehn) and crowned by a castle and lake in 1768, inspired by Venice (that’s why even lions go around with bears). After his death, the site decayed until William I set up a hunting lodge in 1817 with so many deer that his hunting companions were sure to find their prey.

The deer and wild boar enclosures are still there today, but motorcyclists in particular hunt down unsuspecting walkers, because after the revolution the facilities fell into the hands of the public: the queues at the castle restaurant, which had been rebuilt twice, were legendary. But there are grills all around, some associations drink Hofbräu beer, serve bratwurst. Reinforced, you can then reach Monte Scherbelino, the World War II rubble mountain to the east, with great views over the Stuttgart valley basin. Or north-west to the castle of solitude with a view over Ludwigsburg. There is also the official villa of the Prime Ministers – Hans Filbinger had it built in 1968. Although Mappus and Kretschmann despised it, the monumental road to reach it is still illuminated today. (René Zipperlen)

… in Baden

Ephemeral moments at the Feldberg

Yes, the Feldberg is a real escape from everyday life for the people of southern Baden, in two ways. When the Rhine plain is bright in summer, the air is muggy, viscous and sticky like hot cotton candy, you can escape on your bare back to take a deep breath, cool off and enjoy the wind and space. And even in winter it often promises magical, sparkling snow, when there is only depressing mud on the flat roads.

On the other hand, it’s also the place in Baden-Württemberg that can make you want to flee again quickly – when crowds of people overwhelm you like ant streams, whether it’s walking in your boots in the sun or putting on your shoes. ski goggles rustling brightly colored boards in the cold of winter.

But regardless of whether you are drawn to it or pulled back again, it changes the perspective on everyday life, life and being, from top to bottom. After all, it may not be the prettiest, but at 1493 meters the Höggschde is guaranteed in the country. (Ronja Vattes)

From the culinary richness of the Alemannic oases
“Everyone is in High German – Alemannic is fine for me,” sings singer-songwriter Jeannot Weißenberger from Schopfheim. Not out of arrogance, but as a plea to confidently support the dialect of your southern Baden home and speak it every day. This is possible in the district of Lörrach, where Alemannic is still largely the colloquial language. Not in Freiburg. If you order a “Wisswiischorle” in the tavern there, you will get questioning looks at best. The dialect is available for a fee in the “Alemannische Bühne” or free of charge at the market, both in the Münsterplatz and in the district. The stalls of the farm “uff em Märt” offer “Grumbiere” or “Erdöpfel”, “Geriebe” and “roti Rane” as a standard of vegetables. The classic winter salad can also be ordered as “Nussli”. I mean lamb’s lettuce. In Lahr and Offenburg, however, it changed to “Ritscherli” and there the hand-mixed roll up spread is no longer called “Guetseli”, but “Schleckli”. The jam couldn’t sound sweeter. (Heinz Siebold)

By bike to the Texas Pass
The road crosses the green Kaiserstuhl landscape like a gray-brown ribbon. It winds its way along the slope in tight hairpin bends, passing straight rows of Ruländer, Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc. Whether on foot, by bike or in a vintage car – anyone who has climbed the Texas Pass between the wine villages of Oberbergen and Kiechlinsbergen will enjoy spectacular views. The view extends over the terraced vineyards to the Totenkopf, the highest elevation in the Kaiserstuhl.

The pass is best known for the Regio Tour, which passed here regularly. It also owes its nickname to the steel-muscled racing cyclists. The numerous switchbacks reminded cyclists of a cowboy’s lasso, which is why “Auf dem Eck” became the Texas Pass.

The amateur cyclist is also proud of when she climbed the mountain and an elderly lady nods in appreciation and says: “Really great, and all this without an engine”. First to the next bench, unpack your snack and enjoy the sun. Soon the stomach fills up, luckily after the break she goes downhill.

It is not for nothing that the pass is also part of the Baden Wine Route. It does not matter whether in the valley in Oberbergen or beyond the small Kiechlinsbergen forest: good wine is not difficult to find on the Kaiserstuhl. To make the wine of Baden, the beautiful region, the country and its people even better known, the winemakers of Ortenau founded the Baden Wine Route in 1954. After extending to the north and south, it is now Germany’s longest wine route at around 500 kilometers and leads from Kraichgau to the Swiss border. (Annika Sindlinger)

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