Sustainable holidays: the German regions

Discover selected regions of Germany with outstanding sustainability concepts. From the North Sea to the Alps, vibrant landscapes await you in an unspoilt natural setting.

From the rolling foothills of the Alps all the way up to the mountain peaks, the Allgäu has always attracted active holidaymakers. As a sustainable destination for health and wellness, the region is aiming for more, and its Allgäu brand logo can only be used once a strict set of sustainability criteria has been met.

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The World Heritage region of Wartburg Hainich combines two of Thuringia’s most significant tourist destinations: historical Wartburg Castle and the ancient beech forests, which not only reflect the two sides to the UNESCO coin – culture and nature – but also offer a world of opportunities for visitors now and in the future.

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In Germany’s oldest national park, Mother Nature is reclaiming her territory. The forest wilderness that is taking shape here is largely left to its own devices – set within the carefully managed landscape of the nature park. It is here that you’ll find the Grosser Arber: the highest (at 1,456 metres) and best known of the Bavarian Forest mountains.

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Orchards sweeping far and wide, flower-filled grasslands, sprawling beech forests and – at the heart of it all – the Blies winding through riverbank meadows. The UNESCO Biosphere Reserve of Bliesgau in the south-east of the Saarland nestles between the northern Vosges mountains of France and the Palatinate Forest.

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The Middle Elbe Valley and Düben Heath, together with the surrounding towns of Dessau, Wörlitz, Lutherstadt Wittenberg and Torgau, can look back over a long and fascinating history. Conservation has not always been a priority here, least of all during the age of industrialisation. Today, however, a range of initiatives are bringing sustainable experiences to this historical setting, preserving it for future generations.

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Rising up from beyond the Rhine and Moselle rivers, near Germany’s border with Belgium and Luxembourg, is the Eifel: a landscape of dark green wooded hills, bizarre crags and wild streams cutting through deep valleys. Though the mountains here no longer spit fire, the Eifel region is still volcanically active in geological terms.

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The Elbe and its surrounding meadows form an extensive and varied riverscape all the way from the river's source in the Czech Republic to where it flows into the North Sea. The Lower Saxony Elbe Valley Biosphere Reserve and the Elbhöhen-Wendland Nature Park provide protection for an extraordinary biotope.

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