Discover Germany, Issue 64, July 2018

Page 84

Chiemsee. Photo: © Chiemsee-Alpenland Tourismus

Germany’s best bathing lakes When summer finally comes around, Germans are drawn to their local ‘Badesee’, which literally means ‘lake to bathe in’. In Germany, almost everyone has their personal favourite and city people will happily venture out into the countryside in order to enjoy a cold dip. Discover Germany takes a look at some of Germany’s best bathing lakes. TEXT: MARILENA STRACKE

In summer, Germany can get very hot and during those times, Germans seek out their nation’s collective happy place: the bathing lakes. There is a whole culture around these Badeseen, which can be man-made or natural, big or small. Every good Badesee has a little beach area and is surrounded by beautiful nature. Often there are gentle paths around it, as well as boat rentals and also cafés in which to have a currywurst and chips after a long day soaking up the sun. 1. Wannsee, Berlin The legendary Wannsee is not only the subject of a very popular song from the 1950s, but it is also conveniently located in Germany’s vibrant capital. It is the 84  |  Issue 64  |  July 2018

perfect location to enjoy a great variety of water sports, rent a boat or simply go swimming and then take a stroll along the beach. Six per cent of Berlin’s overall area is actually covered with water, and the Wannsee is the best representative of all those lakes. In 1930, Berlin built Germany’s biggest lake lido here, which was thoroughly refurbished in 2007. On a hot day, you will find almost the whole of Berlin fleeing to this lake. If you are visiting Berlin in summer, checking out the Wannsee is an absolute must. 2. Chiemsee, Bavaria Around 60 kilometres south east from Munich, this is the largest lake in Bavaria – measuring 80 square metres – and it is

often called ‘the state’s sea’. In Bavaria, you are spoilt for choice when it comes to lakes. From the Starnberger See to Ammersee and Tegernsee, it can be pretty difficult to pick one. But with the Chiemsee you can never go wrong. Thanks to the stunning Chiemgauer mountains which surround the lake, it is also a popular summer destination for the locals. At the Chiemsee you can not only swim and relax but also go surfing, sailing, kitesurfing or enjoy a hike across the preAlpine countryside. There are various lovely towns such as Bernau and Priern, which are entirely focused on the lake’s tourism. Here, you can easily spend a week or two without ever getting bored. 3. The Great Plöner Lake, Schlweswig-Holstein The Great Plöner Lake measures an impressive three hectares and attracts locals and tourists alike. There are 13 different swimming areas you can choose from. If you are looking for a classic sandy beach, the Prinzenbad on Prinzeninsel (Prince’s