The Upper Swabian Baroque Route, which stretches for nearly 500km from Ulm on the river Danube to Friedrichshafen on Lake Constance, offers a fascinating blend of nature and culture: the perfect way to admire the splendours of the baroque era whilst relishing the fairytale countryside.
The route, with its trademark road sign depicting a yellow cherub on a green background, is a pleasure for the senses, a gateway to a baroque paradise in all its lavish splendour. Angelic hosts floating in airy cupolas, snow-white and gold stuccos that are dazzling in their intensity, ceiling frescos populated by Olympian gods and vast, elaborately decorated churches, their gables adorned with statues and crucifixes; 'splendour' hardly does this justice. The churches' interiors offer a staggeringly rich feast for the eyes too, with naves festooned with plump cherubs, rejoicing angels and rosy-cheeked saints, surrounded by opulent gilding and magnificent ornamentation. All of these sensual, vivid decorations are the artistic expression of the baroque style, which once caused a sensation in Europe. It gave rise to sumptuous monastic libraries, pristine abbeys and enchanting churches – each one lavishly decorated and no two alike. During the baroque period, abbeys fell over themselves in a bid to outdo each other in their opulent displays of grandeur. Voluptuous shapes, vibrant colours, architecture that summoned the very heavens to earth: this is the essence of Upper Swabian Baroque.