Willingen (Upland) — The Sauerland Dream Town

You’d think as MyGermanCity.com got to smaller and smaller (I mean, less populated) villages that it would get harder and harder to find something to do. Anyone who’d have thought that has never been to the town of Willingen (Upland) in the Sauerland.

OK, so what if the place has just over 6,000 people living here? Doesn’t mean they live in a cultural vacuum. Quite the opposite, actually.

And what’s even better is Willingen is hopping in both summer and winter.

Let me start off by saying that if you’re not the outdoor type, you might find yourself turning into one after coming here. Pick a season, and you’ve got a bazillion things to do in the foothills of the Rothaargebirge.

Summertime is great for horseback riding, doing the summer toboggan run, Nordic Walking, mountain biking, or trying the high rope course. Then you’ve got the whole Diemelsee Nature Reserve, a beautiful conservation area, to explore.

Willingen’s tiny lanes and rolling hills make the perfect scenery for a motorcycle ride. Another way to appreciate the scenery is from the cable cars and chairlifts up the mountainside.

Come winter, when these same chairlifts will take you up the mountain so you can downhill ski. This is just one winter activity, and it wouldn’t be right to leave out sledding, Winter Hiking, and cross-country skiing.

Winter sports lovers also flock to Willigen to see the ski jumping events that take place at the Mühlenkopfschanze, one of the largest of its kind in the world. It can seat up to 38,000 spectators — and it fills up quickly for events like the annual Ski Jump World Cup.

Willingen is also historical and educational. The Milchmuhseum is all about the town’s dairy production, and the Schwalenburg Fort dated back to around the 8th century. Oh, you can visit an old Bergwerk (Slate Mine), too.

All this activity takes its toll, so relax at the Lagunen-Erlegnisbad (a spa). After that it’s your choice if you want to go camping or stay at one of the charming guesthouses for the night.

There’s no way anyone could ever say of Willigen (Upland) that there isn’t anything to do — even if it isn’t all that populated.

 

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