It’s hard to fathom looking over at your neighbor, not being able to talk or visit with them, isn’t it?
Such was the case of the people of Braunlage in Lower Saxony — a town that once sat on the Inner German Border, divided from its East German neighbors from the middle to the end of the 20th century.
At the dawn of the 21st century, Germany was reunified so the folks in the former East Germany got to see first hand the wonders of what makes Braunlage one of the best towns in all of northern Germany.
To commemorate Germany’s reunification, you’ll find a Memorial Stone marking the former borders, BTW.
To keep with the whole historical thing, a visit to the Heritage Museum (a.k.a. Heimatmuseum) in the village of Hohegeiß is a fantastic place to start — most especially since the museum itself is the village’s oldest fairy tale half-timbered house (located at Lange Straße 54).
Braunlage has another museum to add to your list of things to do. The Heimat- und FIS-Skimuseum, where the museum details much of what life was once like here, and the German love of skiing all in one convenient place.
Between you and me, I don’t really ski, but that’s not to say I’m not fascinated with careening down the mountainside with the wind in my hair, so good thing I can go mountain biking instead.
Then again, if you’re into more leisurely activities, I’d say the guided hikes through the Harz National Park would be a grand idea. Or, you could just hang out at the Kurpark Hohegeiß, where you can BBQ or take quiet walks along little trails. You also got the Kurgastzentrum, an outdoorsy garden area with an outdoor theater.
Some other fun outdoor things to do could also include canoeing, swimming, or when the weather’s a tad colder there’s always sleigh rides or ice skating. The most ambitious of you can even hike along the Harzer-Hexen-Stieg, a 100km long hiking route known as the Witch’s Trail. Oooh, spooky, sounds perfect for Halloween.
As for other “holidays,” I can’t think of anything better than Braunlage’s Advent Market, or its Walpurgis Night events. In case you weren’t aware, the Walpurgis Night festivities are particularly fun in the Harz Mountain region — so plan to be here on April 30th.
And thankfully these days everyone can enjoy the best of Braunlage.