Trivia #1: Much of Berchtesgaden’s wealth has been derived from its salt mines
Trivia #2: Berchtesgaden came under Bavarian rule in 1810 and became instantly popular with the Bavarian royal family, the House of Wittelsbach.
Trivia #3: Unlike the northern part of Berchtesgadener Land and the Salzburg area, Berchtesgaden has virtually no manufacturing industry.
Berchtesgaden National Park
Blessed with pristine, stunning beauty, Berchtesgaden is often associated with the Watzmann Mountain, at 2,713 m (8,901 ft) the third-highest mountain in Germany (after Zugspitze and Hochwanner), which is renowned in the rock climbing community for its Ostwand (East Face).
Undoubtedly, the Watzmann Mountain is also known as the Superstar of the “Berchtesgaden Land” by the locals as it towers the valleys below.
As they say, going on foot is the best way to explore a new place. If you’re keen to hike around Berchtesgaden National Park, you might want to check out some popular hiking trails here.
Above: A deeply breathtaking sight in the Bavarian Alps!
It’s such a quiet and beautiful corner of the earth here – We could sit here all day long with our books and never feel dull! Seeing such a tranquil scene, it makes one feel like reaching out for his travel note book and to start sketching immediately, taking in the sights and sounds of nature’s goodness.
Truly, Berchtesgaden is a hiker’s dream come true with all its natural elements and beauty.
Above: Lake Königssee – undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places on earth.
Said to be Germany’s deepest and cleanest alpine lake, lake Königssee serenaded us with its emerald hues and stillness. Carved by glaciers, lake Königssee’s water is also rejuvenated by the melting glaciers surrounding it. We learnt that lake Königssee’s blue-green hues are due to the tiny mineral particles from the glacier meltwater – as they are too small to settle at the bottom of the lake, they scatter light rays from the sun as they stay suspended in the water.
Amazing, isn’t it?
How to get to lake Königssee:
Nested inside the Berchtesgaden National Park, lake Königssee is easy to get to. Upon reach the car park lot from the short bus ride in town, walk approximately 10 minutes to reach the pristine lake.
As a long, narrow inlet with steep sides, there are no other means of transportation except quiet, electric boats that ply the calm waters. Travellers wouldn’t experience oil slick trails left behind by diesel-powered boats today – this is because in 1909, in a bid to preserve the pristine beauty of the glacial lake, Prince Regent Luitpold decreed that no diesel or gas-powered boats are allowed.
Church of Sankt Bartholomä
About 30 minutes into the boat ride, we spotted a quaint architecture – the church of Sankt Bartholomä. At this junction (which is about two thirds in), you can get off and explore to start your hike along the edge of the lake or even wander around the edge of the lake to take in the marvellous sight.
Built in 1134, the church of Sankt Bartholomä was named after Saint Bartholomew the Apostle. Throughout the centuries, the Roman Catholic pilgrimage church has been a source of inspiration for bards, poets landscape painters alike.
For those who are feeling famished, there’s a restaurant inside the former hunting lodge next to the church. Expect modern as well as a local traditional spread of fresh trouts – they even cater for vegetarians and vegans.