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From 14 August to 26 September 2015 the Ruhr region is hosting a very special event. During the Ruhrtriennale Festival of the Arts, you can enjoy exhilarating drama, dance and music theatre as well as new installations at former industrial buildings – from coking plants to power stations. These provide breathtaking backdrops for a programme of opera, music theatre, pop and electronic music, all tied together by this year's theme of musical fusions. Be sure not to miss it!

To complement a trip to the festival, take a stroll through Duisburg-Nord Industrial Landscape Park with its hands-on attractions or visit the Ludwig Gallery at Oberhausen Palace, which you can follow with a boat ride.

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The Schwarza Valley Panoramic Trail has been voted Thuringia's most beautiful walking trail by an overwhelming majority. With its glorious paths around the Schwarza, one of the loveliest mountain rivers in Germany, it combines the heights of the Rennsteig trail with the castle scenery of the Saale river.

To make the experience all the more special, you might like to take a ride on the Oberweissbach mountain railway. The refurbished train, which is under historic preservation, connects the Schwarza valley railway with the plateau around Oberweissbach and, with a 25 per cent gradient, is the steepest cable railway of its kind anywhere in the world. While on board, you can enjoy magnificent panoramic views of the Thuringian Forest.

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Ever wanted to have a bird's eye view? Well, now you can – with the first treetop trail in the Harz National Park in Bad Harzburg. Measuring almost a kilometre in length and set 22 metres above the ground, the walkway offers an unusual perspective from which to soak up the exceptional views.

Another must for intrepid explorers is the woodland trail, which has 33 checkpoints. Here, you can learn how the forest's complex ecosystem works and which animals live here in the Harz alongside the bats and lynx. The Bad Harzburg treetop walkway is accessed via a spiral tower on an incline of 6 per cent, making it suitable for prams and wheelchairs.

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The city of Frankfurt hosts its traditional Apfelwein Festival on Rossmarkt square from 7 to 16 August 2015. Apfelwein cider, or stöffche as it's called in the regional dialect, has been the lifeblood of Frankfurt locals since the 16th century. A varied programme of music, theatre and live entertainment will give visitors a taste of this Hessen custom as well as an insight into the apple's journey from orchard to glass.

You can sample the variety of ciders on offer from the many producers – best enjoyed alongside some regional fare – before strolling past the skyscrapers to the nearby museum embankment.

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Every summer, the Bayreuth Festival, also known as the Richard Wagner festival, transforms the Franconian town of Bayreuth into a cultural hub for classical music aficionados. The 30-day event sees accomplished artists perform operatic works by German composer Richard Wagner to the delight of international audiences. The festival, now in its 104th year, runs from 25 July to 28 August 2015 and this season's main attraction is a new production of the romantic drama Tristan and Isolde.

If you love classical music, then this is the festival for you. Set within the extraordinary surroundings of the original festival theatre that was built especially for the composer, the Bayreuth Festival is in a class of its own.

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The Speicherstadt warehouse district of Hamburg has been awarded UNESCO World Heritage status. As announced at the UNESCO Committee session held in Bonn on 5 July 2015, the Speicherstadt and the neighbouring Kontorhaus district are being recognised as unique and enduring symbols of trade. Speicherstadt is the world's largest complex of uniformly designed warehouses, and this fantastic example of maritime industrial architecture is best viewed on a port boat trip. The nearby HafenCity and Elbe Philharmonic Hall are also well worth a visit.

The accreditation of the 'Speicherstadt and Kontorhaus District with Chilehaus' takes the total number of UNESCO World Heritage sites in Germany up to 40. You can discover Germany's world heritage on eight different UNESCO routes or check out #welterbegermany on Instagram for a virtual tour of the sites.

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The Maccabi Games are the biggest Jewish sporting event in Europe and will be held at the Olympia Park in Berlin from 27 July to 5 August 2015. Originating in the 19th century as a competition between members of the Jewish Sports Association, the Games have reached Olympic level today and are recognised as a sporting event of the highest calibre.

Away from all the action, there are many opportunities to learn more about Jewish history in Berlin. The Jewish Museum, for example, is well worth a visit and provides a fascinating insight into Jewish customs and traditions.

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Taking place this year from 6 to 9 August, the annual summer festival in Stuttgart is a highlight in the city's events calendar. It is held on Schlossplatz square outside the New Palace, around Lake Eckensee and by the opera house and the Art Building.

The programme features an eclectic mix of live music – everything from pop, rock and jazz to classical – as well as a fantastic selection of food by top regional restaurateurs. Enjoy a leisurely stroll past the marquees with their food stalls and sample fine wines from the Württemberg region.

A wonderful summer festival of food, drink and music that offers something for everyone.

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The Upper Middle Rhine Valley, which has UNESCO World Heritage status, is the setting for a magnificent spectacle every year. Rhine in Flames is one of the biggest firework displays in the world and lights up the river valley, the Middle Rhine vineyards and more than 15 castles in a dazzling array of colours.

On 8 August 2015 you can cruise down the Rhine from Spay/Braubach to Koblenz on one of around 80 illuminated pleasure boats, or enjoy the fireworks from the riverside at one of the promenade festivals with live music.

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Summertime is festival time! Fans of electronic music can look forward to two highlights in Germany this summer. From 31 July to 2 August 2015, the big bass sounds of the Nature One festival will be resonating from the former Pydna missile base near the small Hunsrück town of Kastellaun. You can dance the night away to a whole host of international acts such as Axwell & Ingrosso.

Those who want to carry on partying can head straight to the SonneMondSterne festival in Erfurt, which takes place from 7 to 9 August 2015. Calvin Harris and The Chemical Brothers are among the big names in this year's line-up.

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