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Your Thoughts on the Black Forest, please --

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I am considering a 3-night stopover (2 full days) in the Black Forest while going from Garmisch to Montreux in late Sep -- actually the last 3 nights of Sep. I have reservations in Montreux starting 1 Oct.

I adore lakes, so my first instinct was to look around the lakes, and I found a nice hotel (Wochners Hotel Sternen) on Schluchsee. However, I'm just not sure that would be the best place for me, so I'd love to have your input.

I do adore lakes, but I also adore green rolling hills, lots of 'em. So, what do you think would be the best part of the BF where I can find rolling green hills as far as I can see? Should I go a little farther north? Or will I find those luscious hills around the lakes? I plan to spend my two days walking in the countryside, and I've already downloaded 7 walks from Hochschwarzwald tourist site for the Titisee/Schluchsee area.

I'll probably have a car (the first time driving in Europe in about 15 years) but will probably return it in Freiburg and take the train on to Montreux (and spend the day in Freiburg).

Thanks for any help!

s

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    I have a place of residence in Schluchsee. Let's first talk about lakes.

    The Schluchsee is the largest of the Black Forest lakes. The trail around the lake is 18 km long, but you can do easy shortcuts with the steamer or with the train. In Schluchsee town, you find promenades, public beaches, boat and canu rentals and such things. At the other end, in Schluchsee-Aha, there is a sailing port with sailing schools and, if you follow the lakeshore trail, you find most beautiful scenery. Schluchsee is a good starting point for many hikes or short drives to other beautiful places.

    The Titisee is much smaller, but also very scenic. There is alsow a steamer and a beach. The town of Titisee is pretty, has lots of hotels (some of them quite posh) and usually crowded with tourists, many of them from China and Arabian countries.

    There is another most beautiful lake: The Feldsee below the Feldberg. It is an almost circular glacier lake surrounded by dramatic rock cliffs and an impressive moraine. However, it is only accessible by hiking either from the Feldberg or from a parking lot along the road from Titisee to Bärental.

    There are several small lakes which are worth walking around, like the Windgfällweiher near Altglasshütten and the Schlüchtsee near Rothaus (were the famous brewery is located).

    In any case, lots of things to do and to see. There are more hikes, mountains, waterfalls, moraines etc.

    If you want to stay on a lake the main question is Schluchsee or Titisee? Schluchsee is quieter, but has all tourist infrastructure you need. Titisee is maybe a little bit more picturesque but very lively (to say the least) and full of souvenir stores.

    Schluchsee consists of the main town and several villages which technically belong to the municipality (like Aha or Fischbach). In town, you have more opportunities to walk around, visit the beautiful church (excellent combination of historic and modern), go to several restaurants, cafés, ice cream parlours, shops etc.

    Wochners Hotel Sternen looks pretty from the outside and has a fairly good restaurant but I am afraid the rooms show a little wear and tear. An alternative in the same price range might be Hotel Schiff (also traditional) which has a better restaurant, a slightly better location, a small pool and better rooms (we celebrated our wedding there and also the 25th anniversary).

    The best hotels in Schluchsee are Hegers Parkhotel Flora and the Vier Jahreszeiten (which is, however, popular among the tennis player crowd). Mutzel is also recomendable. We often place our guest in Haus Riesenbühl which is quite new, but in traditional style, with breakfast but without restaurant (you don't need a hotel with restaurant in Schluchsee, since you find so many restaurants in walking distance).

    Landhaus Mühle is cozy boutique hotel at the edge of town and Hubertus a very picturesque castle right on the lake with fantastic views, but located a little remotely (but you have a car).

    Any more questions? (I won't reply today, but tomorrow morning again.)

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