The 550km Porcelain Route between Bamberg and Bayreuth gives visitors on the trail of this white gold the chance to uncover more than 300 years of porcelain history, plus a veritable mountain of information on the region's porcelain heritage and the people who make it.
Those following the route can enjoy the captivating countryside of north-east Bavaria while getting to know some fascinating things about this amazing, naturally-made material, whose range of applications and form are virtually unsurpassed. The proud history of German porcelain is on display at every turn, with museums, factory outlets, specialist stores and manufactories showcasing the full breadth of porcelain elegance. Amongst the many world-famous porcelain brands on show, visitors will find Seltmann, Arzberg, Walküre, Bauscher, Goebel, Hutschenreuther, Rosenthal and many others that are faithful to the porcelain tradition. There are also plenty of bargains to be had at the various factory outlets, which sell a range of charming items from everyday china, through elegant luxury designs to painted, one-off pieces. In many places, manufacturers offer guided tours that allow visitors to see how the raw porcelain mixture is moulded, fired, painted, decorated and glazed until it becomes a finished product. For those wishing to study the subject in more depth, Selb-Plössberg's Porzellanikon complex, home to the European Industrial Museum for Porcelain and the European Museum for Technical Ceramics, is highly recommended. Many other museums also recount the story of this cultural and historical achievement, from the origins of the first ceramics right up to the lifestyle objects of the 21st century. Along the Bavarian Porcelain Route, examples of substantial works of art and stylish design items can be found in the midst of enchanting highland scenery that is as rich and varied as the porcelain itself. The route is also a real insider's tip for motorcyclists and camper van enthusiasts.