Fussen: A Winter Fairytale, 17-24 February 2013
Bewitched is the right word to describe how I felt during my 7 days stay in the town of Füssen and spending time exploring its surroundings. Each day the trail led through fluffy snow and took me to places straight from a fairytale, from breathtaking castles to cosy Bavarian Gaststätte. Food served there melts in the mouth and beer is poured into double size pint glasses with thick foam on top gently falling down, just like the snow outside.
On one occasion the group was entertained by the owner of one of the Gaststättes. Once he finished cooking , he started playing traditional songs for us too whilst we enjoyed our meals. This was truly unique and what a fantastic way of experiencing the local culture!
The Bavarian Hospitality
The very best way to enjoy Füssen is to just walk without wishing to get anywhere in particular. Obviously you should see the highlights, like the High Palace and The Heritage Museum and the beautiful St Mang Basilica filled with ceiling paintings, but there are surprises at every turn. Getting lost can actually be a delight.
Discovering the calm, beautiful, magical side of Füssen was a pleasure. Tiny, narrow alleys reveal the real jewels – beautifully decorated façades of houses, baroque fountains with mysterious statues or welcoming boutiques selling traditional goods.
When I was ready to be found again, I just wandered around until I eventually spotted the high street or asked a local passer-by, surprisingly all can speak English!
Another “must-see” is the range of castles nestled upon small hills and overlooking the Alpsee Lake, favourite residences of King Ludwig II. Some sources call him the ‘Mad King of Bavaria’ while Bavarians prefer to say the ‘Fairytale King’. To understand why, the group made our way through the forests covered in snow to the castles in a nearby village. The paths were quiet as it wasn’t so touristy here at this time of the year. Suddenly, I saw the magnificent Neuschwanstein Castle if front of us. I was speechless. Its fairytale impression was just overwhelming. And here I discovered what had really happened to its creator, and where tales of disagreements came from.
Just when I thought that I had seen all possible charms of Bavaria, more unexpected things happened. We walked to a remote part of the forest to watch the feeding of wild deer by the local wildlife organisation. These majestic animals started to slowly walk down the slope though the trees towards us and we felt as if we could almost touch them.