History hasn't always been kind to Freudenstadt. This small town in the Black Forest has been ravaged by war, plague and fire time and again over the centuries. Fortunately for us, each time the town was restored it was made just a little bit more beautiful than before. Today's visitors can expect a real gem full of great surprises and splendid attractions.
The market square in Freudenstadt, the largest in the whole of Germany, is one of the town's most famous features. Almost exactly square, it is framed by beautiful historical buildings, including some delightful arcaded houses accommodating dozens of little shops. The 50 fountains on the square provide quite a spectacle and offer a great way to cool off in summer.
Verdant meadows dotted with sheep: the Black Forest
The Stadthaus, which today stands at the heart of the market square, features a fascinating exhibition taking you back to post-war Germany and the 'economic miracle'. Another highlight on the square is the Protestant town church, whose two naves meet at right angles. This was originally to ensure that men and women were completely separated during services. The altar and pulpit were placed in the centre so that the pastor never lost sight of his 'flock'. Flocks of another kind can be found on the lush pastures of the Black Forest – a region that offers an almost unparalleled richness of natural scenery with vast pine forests under a deep blue sky. There is also a wide range of sport and leisure activities to enjoy, as well as typical Black Forest villages where customs and festive traditions are part and parcel of everyday life. A great way to experience it all is from the Black Forest Ridgeway, which runs for 60 scenic kilometres from Freudenstadt to Baden-Baden offering glorious views of the Black Forest valleys, the Rhine valley, the Alsace and the Vosges mountains.
A world of discovery and wonderful views: Experimenta and the Friedrichsturm
The Experimenta is not simply a museum, it is a window into the world of today, providing mind-boggling insights into nature and technology. A range of hands-on installations explain phenomena that occur in everyday life and the natural world in a way that ordinary people can understand. It's a place where many a visitor has experienced that all-important 'aha'-moment. New perspectives can also be enjoyed at the Friedrichsturm observation tower, which reaches 739 metres above sea level and was built in 1899 to mark the town's 300th anniversary. At a height of 25 metres, it offers glorious views of Freudenstadt and the northern Black Forest. The tower is located in the Kienberg spa region, which rewards those who prefer to keep their feet firmly on the ground with a fusion of fragrance and colour on Germany's highest Rose Trail.