2023 - Diversity the Franconian way:
Culture, nature and enjoyment in the vacation destination Franconia
Twisting half-timbered alleys next to magnificent Baroque ensembles, vast forests next to fertile vineyards, relaxed pleasures next to plenty of sporting action: in Franconia, these apparent contrasts simply go together. It is precisely this diversity that distinguishes the vacation destination in the north of Bavaria. 16 different vacation landscapes provide plenty of variety with delicious cuisine, beer and wine specialities, sights and lively culture – typically Franconian.
Franconia is also characterized by the diversity of its nature parks. Ten altogether, they make up more than half of the holiday region. Nature has created very different landscapes here: The open expanses of the Rhön region with its fascinating moors, the Fichtelgebirge Mountains with the highest peaks in Franconia, the rolling hills of the Hassberge Mountains, the Altmühl Valley Nature Park with its juniper heaths, the Franconian Switzerland - Franconian Jura Nature Park with its bizarre rock formations and caves, or the Bergstrasse-Odenwald Geo-Nature Park, which open fascinating windows into the earth's history. The abundance of forests in the Franconian nature parks is also a special feature. There are the natural forest reserves of the Frankenhöhe Heights, the Frankenwald Forest as the "green crown of Bavaria", the Steigerwald Forest with its combination of forest and wine or the Spessart, which forms one of the largest contiguous deciduous forest areas in Central Europe with its beech and oak trees (www.frankentourismus.de/nachhaltiger-urlaub/naturpark).
Sustainable ways to vacation
The nature parks are also an indicator of the great importance of sustainability in Franconian tourism. After all, one of the central tasks of a nature park is to actively protect, maintain and develop its landscapes and at the same time make them accessible to people. Another important aspect of sustainability is the support of regional produce - and in Franconia, you can taste it on your tongue. The many different regional products ensure this - from tender asparagus to freshly caught fish and lamb. Projects with old cattle breeds such as the "Yellow Franconian Cattle" or the "Sechsämter Red Cattle" also enrich the menus of Franconian restaurateurs.
For visitors who want to know more about what sustainability actually means, the "Steigerwald Center - Experience Sustainability" in the Oberschwarzach district of Handthal is the place to go. Just a few kilometers away, there are lofty heights that can be climbed: Near Ebrach, the "Steigerwald treetop trail" spirals upward between the treetops. On the barrier-free path to the "summit", there are interactive stations, lots of information about the forest habitat and - thanks to the "Wipfel“ app - quizzes and augmented reality. In Franconia, green time-outs are even possible in the middle of the city. Palace gardens, landscape parks or private refuges invite visitors to take a sensual stroll through the "Parks and Gardens - Franconia's Paradises" - from the Bayreuth Hermitage to the Eichstätt Bastion Garden to the Bürgerpark Hain, Bamberg's largest biotope. The Hain is home, for example, to the "large oak longhorn beetle," which is found only here in Bavaria (www.frankens-paradiese.de).
Embedded in sustainability
And where can guests find sustainable accommodation? This has long been of great importance to the Franconian hoteliers and landlords. With regional ingredients in the kitchen, natural materials, green electricity and much more, they keep their carbon footprint small. In Erlangen, travelers can sleep in Germany's first climate-positive hotel. Those who want to get even closer to nature are welcome to trekking sites, shepherd's caravans or tree house hotels. A separate section on this topic on the FrankenTourismus website shows, how varied sustainable vacations in Franconia can be. Here, by the way, visitors also find tips on sustainable lifestyles, events focused on the topic of sustainability and short, inspirational films showing beautiful sustainable vacations in Franconia (www.frankentourismus.de/nachhaltiger-urlaub).
To ensure that this is the case right from the start, the Bavarian Railway Company (BEG) and the Greater Nuremberg Transport Association (VGN) are recommended for travel. Thanks to them, a dense network of bus and rail lines crisscrosses Franconia's vacation region. Many buses and trains deliberately head for leisure destinations or starting points for hiking and biking routes.
The most beautiful time of the year simply book online
It is also very easy to book a stay with Franconian hosts online. In addition to the usual booking portals, the FrankenTourismus website offers guidance. It links directly to the booking options of the Franconian vacation landscapes and thus facilitates both the search and the booking itself (www.frankentourismus.de/unterkuenfte).
Family time in the "Playroom Franconia“
With "Spielraum Franken", FrankenTourismus has created its own portal that offers travel tips and direct bookability in one. Under the motto "An excursion to Franconia is like a fantasy trip. Only in real life", users are invited to discover Franconia's centuries-old tradition as a land of toys as well as to book specific offers from the areas of "Action & Experience", "Nature & Animals", "Tradition & History" and "Dolls & Toys". They range from a visit to life-size dinosaurs to archery and rides on the museum train to a spooky and haunted tour of a Franconian castle. If you want to give someone a treat, simply gift a "Make a Wish" voucher for unforgettable experiences in "Spielraum Franken". To find out about all the possibilities, follow "Spielraum Franken" on Instagram (www.instagram.com/spielraum_franken) or search for #spielraumfranken. That way you won't miss any of the competitions that are part of the campaign (www.spielraum-franken.de).
City trips write the best stories
A fascinating world opens up in the Franconian cities. The highlights include Ansbach, Aschaffenburg, Bamberg, Bayreuth, Coburg, Dinkelsbühl, Eichstätt, Erlangen, Forchheim, Fürth, Kulmbach, Nuremberg, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Schweinfurt and Würzburg. Their joint website shows what insider tips the 15 Franconian cities have to offer. Short texts and videos whet the appetite for discovery tours. Guests can choose whether they are specifically interested in a city or are guided by the keywords under which the stories and experiences are listed. How about, for example, "Princely rustle of leaves" in Coburg, "Mediterranean leisure " in Aschaffenburg or "Bath in culture" on Fürth's riverside promenade (www.die-fraenkischen-staedte.de)?
30th birthday in the world heritage
Franconia's cultural treasures are world-class as demonstrated by its UNESCO World Heritage sites. The Upper Germanic-Raetian Limes, the magnificent Würzburg Residence, the Old Town of Bamberg, the Bayreuth Margravial Opera House and Bad Kissingen as part of the "Great Spa Towns of Europe" bear this great distinction. This means that five of the total of ten Bavarian UNESCO World Heritage Sites are located in Franconia (www.frankentourismus.de/unesco-welterbe-franken). Incidentally, Bamberg will be celebrating the 30th anniversary of the elevation of the entire Old Town ensemble to UNESCO World Heritage status in 2023. This is a good occasion, for example, to take part in the Bamberg World Heritage Run on May 7, 2023, or to explore the World Heritage Visitor Center (www.bamberg.info).
Enjoyable traditions: Regional cuisine, beer and wine from Franconia
Whether on cultural or nature tours: In Franconia, there are always delicious opportunities to get to know the culinary side of the vacation destination and to toast to it with a glass of Franconian wine. This delicious combination of nature and the passion of Franconian winegrowers offers numerous enjoyable travel opportunities. "Franconia – A Land of Wine and Beauty" bundles selected recommendations. Only offers that meet the high defined requirements are allowed to bear this seal of quality. This is how travelers can discover wineries, restaurants, inns, wine bars and wine bistros or be a guest at a winegrower's in Franconia. Wine hiking trails, fine food from wine country Franconia, extraordinary wine architecture and the viewpoints "terroir f - the magical places of Franconian wine" round off the enjoyment experience in wine country Franconia (www.franken-weinland.de).
This also applies to the extremely successful initiative "Franconia - Home of Beers". It combines interesting tips and stories about Franconia's breweries with beer tours, beer festivals and stories about true "beer legends" - because Franconia's brewing culture is unique in the world. Nowhere else is there such a high density of breweries, and with it a large number of beer varieties - from smoked beer to the "Ungespundeten". Franconian brewing culture is revealed with pleasure in beer museums, on beer hikes, brewing seminars, beer tours and at traditional festivals (www.franken-bierland.de).
The brochure "Franconia - Land of Delights" invites the traveler on a culinary voyage of discovery to tangible delights. Like other Franconia Tourism brochures, it can also be found as a flip catalog on the Internet. In it culinary delicacies from Franconia are presented, such as the Franconian sausages, Nuremberg gingerbread or the Aischgründer carp (www.frankentourismus.de/kulinarisch). The 56 Franconian places awarded the title "Genussort Bayern" (Bavaria as a place of enjoyment) can also be found in the brochure and on the website.
A celebration of culture
Culinary and wine events are an integral part of the Franconian calendar of events, as are customs, top-class concerts and Christmas markets. Literature festivals alternate with historical festivities, theater days and festivals. Information on these events is provided in the online calendar at www.frankentourismus.de/veranstaltungen, which is of course also available for smartphones and tablets.
One of the highlights on the 2023 calendar of events is the German Protestant Church Day, which will transform Nuremberg into a festival of faith, culture and music as well as a forum for critical debate from June 7 to 11, 2023 (www.kirchentag.de). There will also be celebrations at the "Bavarian-Czech Friendship Weeks" in Selb. From May to August 2023, the focus in the Fichtelgebirge Mountains town will be on getting to know each other without borders. Festivals, concerts, sports, nature and adventure events provide the perfect setting for this (www.bayerisch-tschechische-freundschaftswochen-selb-2023.de).
A bulwark of design and innovation
As one of the locations of the "Porzellanikon", Selb is a very good example of Franconia's rich industrial culture. This can also be seen in the neighboring Franconian Forest in 2023 at the "Design and Innovation - made by Loewe" exhibition in Kronach. The city is the heart and headquarters of the tradition-rich Loewe company, which was founded in 1923. The 100th anniversary exhibition, which can be seen from March to October 2023, features exhibits from the history of audio, television and design in the unique setting of Rosenberg Fortress (www.kronach.de).
An integral part of Franconian culture is the "Musikzauber Franken". Only events that manage to combine high musical quality with a special ambience are certified with the quality seal "Music Magic Franconia" - from church concerts to open-air events at Franconia's castles to swinging festivals (www.frankentourismus.de/musikzauber-franken).
Quality at every step: Hiking in Franconia
Franconia always presents itself to active vacationers as an absolute top destination thanks to its quality and premium hiking trails. More than 50 routes are now certified in Franconia. This means that the vacation region has a density of quality trails like no other German vacation region. Unforgettable touring experiences are offered, among others, by the "Franconian Trail - from the Rennsteig to the Swabian Alb" or the "Franconian Mountain Trail". The 520 kilometer long "Frankenweg" crosses the hiking paradise of Franconia from the northeast to its southernmost tip; the "Franconian Mountain Trail" leads over 428 kilometers across some of the most stately peaks in Franconia. Due to their outstanding hiking offers, the Franconian Forest and the "Räuberland" in the Spessart-Mainland were even certified as "Quality Region Hiking Germany" (www.frankentourismus.de/wandern).
Franconian river routes
Probably one of the most varied routes for cyclists is the "MainRadweg" with a route length of around 600 kilometers. It follows the Main river through various vacation landscapes from its two sources to its mouth (www.mainradweg.com). Pure river pleasure is also offered by the "RegnitzRadweg", which connects the cities of Nuremberg and Bamberg (www.regnitzradweg.de), and the "Tauber Altmühl Radweg". The latter links the courses of the Main, Tauber, Altmühl and Danube rivers between Wertheim and Kelheim (www.tauber-altmuehl-radweg.de).
Cyclists in Franconia have an extra tailwind thanks to the numerous e-bike offers. Along the e-bike routes, the network of battery charging and rental stations, service centers and hosts with e-bike rental is particularly tightly woven (www.frankentourismus.de/radfahren).
On the road with motorcycle and RV
Motorcyclists will find the best conditions on the road in Franconia. Varied tours, idyllic rest areas and motorcycle-friendly inns make Franconia a relaxed biker's paradise. A selection of tours is featured in the brochure "Pure riding pleasure - The most beautiful tours by motorcycle", which is available from FrankenTourismus (www.frankentourismus.de/motorrad-touren/). For RV-lovers the way is prepared in Franconia in the best way: In the brochure "Free ride to the variety - The most beautiful tours with the RV" and online, they receive numerous suggestions for varied driving and vacation enjoyment with their mobile home (www.frankentourismus.de/wohnmobil).
Relaxing in the wellness destination Franconia
No matter which way travelers discover Franconia – moments to relax are not in short supply. The 19 spas and health resorts in the "Franconia Health Park" make sure of that. They are - thanks to innovative concepts and healing treasures from nature - true health and wellness destinations. Offerings include modern spas, magnificent sauna landscapes, wellness treatments and special features such as Germany's first healing water lake, salt lakes with a concentration similar to that of the Dead Sea or certified healing forests. Here visitors can regenerate physically and above all let the soul exhale (www.gesundheitspark-franken.de).
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