Beautiful destinations in the Westerwald
Top 10 Sights in Hesse
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Castles and palaces, fairytales and lots of nature, plus wonderful thermal spas and parks: there is a lot to see and experience in Hesse. In addition, there can be foundwonderful towns and legendary places.
If you want to get to know Hesse better, you should definitely visit the beautiful Westerwald. The region scores with lush nature, charming towns and villages and numerous sights. Whether hiking or sightseeing, many activities are possible here. We present our top 10 sights.
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There are 124 steps leading up to the wonderful and fascinating Knöpfchenhalle, one of the largest single cave rooms in Germany. It is the part of the autumn mazecave that can be visited. Here, in addition to numerous dripstone formations, there is also the first complete LED concept in Europe. In addition, a karst and cave nature trail with the impressive gorge named Gasseschlucht and various excursion destinations await visitors in the immediate vicinity: The Breitscheid pottery museum, an animal park as well as a game park and Greifenstein Castle with its bell tower are just a few delightful ideas for young and old. In the restaurant "Breitscheider Stube" you can get tickets for the cave as well as the best home cooking from breakfast to dinner.
Dillenburg is known as the Oranienstadt. Here you will find the impressive Wilhelm Tower with the Wilhelm Monument. Both were built in the 19th century and are dedicated to William I of Orange, who was born in Dillenburg in 1533. The tower museum shows the eventful history between Nassau-Dillenburg and the Dutch House of Oranien. The virtual tour of Dillenburg Castle, which has since been destroyed, is also worth seeing. In the nearby Villa Grün, the economic history of the region is documented in more than 20 rooms. In addition, the Oranier Route, a holiday route, and the German Half-Timbered House Route run alongside the town, which is over 750 years old.
Herborn was aware of its importance early on and drew attention to itself as the "Nassau Rothenburg". The self-contained old town is characterised by buildings from eight centuries. It is one of the most beautiful and best-preserved medieval town centres in Germany. It's hard to decidewhich features to visit first: the city wall with its two preserved city gates, the five other surviving towers, or would you rather visit the Scharfrichterhaus and the enchanting market squares first? The town hall with its coat of arms frieze is also a real jewel. You can reach the Dillblick lookout tower via hiking trail H0 and enjoy the magnificent panorama. The first stage of the WesterwaldSteig quality hiking trail also starts here in Herborn.
The zoo is located in the Uckersdorf district of Herborn. It is home to around 80 animal species and a total of about 300 animals. In addition to the bird park where, among other things, the magnificent macaws attract visitors, the vivarium with a python snake, lizards and other creatures that are rarely seen elsewhereis also worth seeing. Children are not the only ones fascinated by the enchanting meerkats, the placid kangaroos and the lively monkeys. The bird park is home to several endangered species and has also made a name for itself as a breeding station. In addition, explanatory feedings and the opportunity to celebrate children's birthday parties with special feedings attract park guests every year.
100 bells await visitors to the centuries-old Greifenstein Castle: with this unique collection of international standing, the castle offers the largest collection of bells in Europe. Some of them can be struck by young and old. In addition, the castle's twin towers, which feature a griffin as a weather vane, offer a magnificent view far across the region, as the castle is the highest point in the Lahn-Dill district. No wonder people like to get married here. If you are still on a sightseeing tour, you can visit the BasaltPARKours in nearby Beilstein or the former Dianaburg hunting lodge north of the Ulm district. During the summer, a swimming trip to the impressive Ulmbachtalsperre is worthwhile.
The Gasseschlucht forms the dry valley of the Erdbach, which today runs underground. It is one of the highlights of the karst nature trail, which stretches over four kilometres (small loop) and introduces visitors not only to the nature of the protected area but also to the unusual karst formations, which are unique in Hesse. The trail is signposted. It is recommended to be guided by an expert here (large loop: eight kilometres) so that you don’t miss anything. Caves and sinkholes as well as unique views are shown along the way. But you can also hike on your own. If you want to experience more, visit the nearby autumn mazewith its accessible Knöpfchenhalle.
A rose garden on the Herzenberg: what a suitableplace for the queen of flowers! The garden is laid out in English style on 3,000 square metres and houses fountains and flower beds in addition to the wonderful roses. About 160 rose varieties with a total of about 2,000 rose bushes grow here. Overall, it’s a picture-perfect overall composition that is well worth the stay. The way from the city to Herzenberg is signposted and the garden is open all year round. Admission is free, but wedding photos and commercial shoots must be registered for a fee. It is also worth visiting the town with its half-timbered houses and churches which are worth seeing.
The Krombachtalsperre near Driedorf, which dams the Rehbach stream, is an excursion destination that attracts hikers and nature lovers almost all year round. It is particularly popular in summer, because here you can swim, do water sports andchildren look forward to the large playground. The reservoir is the largest body of water in the High Westerwald and holds over four million litres. If you climb the observation tower in the nature reserve, you have a wide view over the lake. Many endangered bird species and rare plants have found refuge in this protected part. The lake is scenically situated in the middle of dense deciduous and coniferous forests, which invite you to go on cycling tours and walks.
The Seeweiher has alreadyexistedsince 1452. This makes it one of the oldest reservoirs in the whole of Hesse. It is located between Mengerskirchen and Waldernbach and dams the Vöhlerbach. It is a popular destination in summer and winter, especially for short- and long-term campers. But also the weekend houses which existhere since the 1980s are popular and frequented with pleasure. In summer, there is a holiday programme for children and young people, and in winter, the nearby Knoten ski area is an attraction. If you are hungry, there is a well-kept restaurant with an extensive outdoor area. Those who want to learn more about regional history can visit the local history museum in the tower of Mengerskirchen Castle.
The polygonal, listed tower on the head south of Haiger is ten metres high and offers a fantastic view. It was named after Eduard Schuhmachers from Viersen, a cloth merchant who loved to travel to Haiger in the 19th century because, according to his own statement, the climate suited him perfectly. From the spot where the tower now stands, he enjoyed the far-reaching view and made a generous donation to the town for thelookout tower. The town thanked him with a white marble memorial plaque. In Haiger itself there is, among other things, a museum of local history in a picture-perfect half-timbered house on the market square.
Not only the Westerwald has many sights to offer in Hesse, and those planning a round trip to Hesse can choose from many attractions. The Römer in Frankfurt am Main is probably one of the most important sights in this beautiful state. A visit to the Palmengarten will also cause many ah's and oh's. Another superlative is the Bergpark Wilhelmshöhe in Kassel, which is the largest of its kind in Europe. The charmingBiebrich Palace in Wiesbaden attracts visitorswith its fancy rotunda. In contrast, Braunfels Castle looks like a dark fairytale castle. A visit to Sababurg, Hesse's Sleeping Beauty Castle, is even more enchanting. A special highlight is the Messel Pit, which even children will love. The Felsenmeer (sea of rocks), the stalactite caves and beautiful towns like Marburg with its castle and many half-timbered houses provide plenty of variety.