The Fernweh is pretty real right now...
Are you - like us - totally fed up of staring the same four walls (or, perhaps more accurately, your laptop screen) day in, day out? We’re longing for open horizons, the scent of pine trees and fresh sea air on our faces, but instead are sitting listening to the sounds of traffic, the vibrations of the washing machine upstairs, and our neighbours working out while listening to techno.
We know that a vaccine is on the way and the end of lockdown is in sight, so we’re hardcore daydreaming of our next German getaway, and we’d encourage you to join us. Shut your eyes and imagine your toes sinking into soft sand on the island of Rügen, your hands brushing over leaves as you hike through the forests of the Sächsische Schweiz or the taste of rich red wine coating your tongue as you sit in the vineyards of the Mosel Valley.
It’s pretty hard to know where to go first, but we have some strong contenders in mind! Here are our picks of holidays we’re planning for once we’re let out of quarantine.
Everyone knows Potsdam for its quaint old town and sprawling palaces, but a little future west lie the gorgeous rolling hills of the Mittelmark. We’re longing for the dense forest, full of pine, oak and birch trees that stretch on for kilometre after kilometre. One of the most magical things about the region is the total lack of manmade noise; we’re counting down the days until we having nothing but the sound of birds and swirling wind ringing in our ears.
Sleep: For a cosy weekend away we love Countryside Cottage.
Alpine holidays are the ideal antidote to weeks of confinement. Berchtesgaden is the only national park in the German Alps, but it has everything for a picture-perfect escape: expansive meadows, rushing rivers, and turquoise lakes, plus six high-rise mountain ranges with dramatic views and an unlimited supply of fresh air. Bliss.
Sleep: Mountain Chalets, six gorgeous apartments, each with their own personality.
For us, there’s nothing more meditative than sitting amongst the sand dunes and gazing out at rolling waves. The island of Amrun is in the same chain of islands as Sylt, and we think Amrum the prettiest of the bunch. Plus it’s much less crowded with tourist seeking high-end luxury. We love the reed-thatched Frisian houses, woodlands and the 12km of fine, white-sand beaches.
Sleep: Wake up with a picture-perfect view of the sand at Dune House.
With the slogan "let nature be nature", we can’t think of anywhere better to really get away from our daily digital lives and reconnect with the planet. Pack binoculars and look out for eagle-owls, black storks and wild cats (they're only distant relations of the humble house cat). We want to visit in spring, as the landscape is stained purple by a sea of wild narcissus that cover the valley floor.
Sleep: We’ve been longing for an excuse to stay at Volcanic Houses, and this is the perfect one.
Müritz is known as the land of a thousand lakes. We’re dreaming of a misty dawn morning where we gently push a canoe out onto a flat, watery surface and gently paddle along the shoreline, absorbing the surrounding greenery. This dream-like feeling of floating is exactly what we’re craving the most right now. Fun fact: the Müritz is the largest lake in Germany, and - in terms of surface area - is bigger than Paris!
Sleep: For a wonderfully unique experience, stay at the Müritz Water Tower, a former water tower, now four designer apartments.
The Geierlay, a 360m long suspension bridge, is exactly what we want to get our adrenaline going. Handing at 100m above the ground, it connects the villages of Mörsdorf and Sosberg. While it’s not for the faint-hearted, it provides exceptional views over treetops, and through the valley below where the Mörsdorfer Bach stream meanders. The bridge is on the Saar-Hunsrück Climb hiking trail, which is a gorgeous (but very long - 410km!) walk: we suggest you take a stroll along this route, at least for a couple of kilometres!
Sleep: The perfect place to unwind from the day’s excitement is Mosel Chalets, cosy cabins overlooking the Mosel valley.