Once upon a time in Germany… The Fairytale Road
The Fairytale Road is a place where a magical bygone era full of stories and legends lives on. Uncover the people, stories and castles that inspired the iconic fairytale characters, immortalised by the Brothers Grimm.
Based at the Maritim Hotel in the picturesque town of Bad Wildungen, you’re right in the heart of the fairytales. Upon arrival, enjoy a welcome drink and each evening enjoy a three course dinner, with one night at a traditional brewery. Just over the hills is Snow White’s Village where tiny quaint houses transport you into the world of fantasy. The small, strong men working in the copper mine became entwined in this beautiful young girl’s story. Discover the world of another princess on the fairytale road at Sababurg Castle – the castle where Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm based Sleeping Beauty.
Kassel sprawls along the River Fulda. This culture-rich city is lovely to explore and furthermore has several museums worth visiting. A highlight is the baroque Park Wilhelmshöhe, which features a whimsical castle and Hercules fountain. View this city through the lens of the Brother’s Grimm with a themed tour which explores the years they spent living here. This is truly fascinating for literature buffs as these siblings are very important in German literature. But the tale of these men is interesting for all those who enjoyed their stories growing up.
Another delightful place to visit is Marburg. This historic university town once counted the Grimms amongst their students. Perhaps explore the Old Town which is nestled between a spectacular Gothic church and a dominating castle.
Looking for alternative tours to Germany? Check out the Romantic Road tour in Germany
Dates throughout 2021
Suggested itinerary by coach
Depart the UK
Travel to Dover to take the ferry across the Channel to Calais. From there, continue through France to Germany, stopping overnight on the way.
Arrive in Bad Wildungen
Continue through Germany, down to Bad Wildungen, your base for the next 5 nights. At your hotel, enjoy a Welcome Cocktail. on arrival. Perhaps take a stroll around this beautiful old town before dinner.
Kassel, Capital of the Fairytale Route
Step into the world of the famous brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm behind the stories on a special guided tour around the city. They lived in Kassel for many years collecting stories and transforming them into written creations. Spend the afternoon in the Brothers Grimm Museum where the authors’ annotated copies of the fairytales are displayed or indulge in a spot of shopping in the city. Worth a look is Wilhelmshöhe Palace with the landmark Hercules Monument situated in the surrounding parkland.
Then, visit the historical Knallhütte Brewery where Dorothea Viehmann worked. She collected stories from travelling merchants, many of which provided inspiration for the Brothers Grimm when she passed them along. Enjoy a fairytale hour where ‘Dorothea’ shares her art of storytelling with your group, accompanied by a buffet meal.
Back at the hotel, why not use your coupon for a free drink at the bar to start off the evening?
Drive through the Fulda Valley to Hann. Münden, where you will find around 700 colourful and beautifully-preserved half-timbered houses and a Town Hall dating back to the 14th century. At the confluence of three rivers, it is here that the legendary Dr. Eisenbart, a famous ‘kill or cure’ doctor of the baroque era, lived and practised. Marvel at the Glockenspiel which recounts the story of the Doctor and his patients. There is plenty to discover in Hann. Münden whether you’d like to learn the witches and scoundrels of the town’s past, or admire the quaint town on a river cruise.
From here, continue to Sababurg Castle, founded in 1334, the inspiration for Sleeping Beauty’s Castle with its romantic gardens. Here, enjoy a tour of the castle and gardens which covers both history and fairytales. There is also a restaurant, should you wish to dine here. Then, enjoy the return drive through the national park.
The Legend of Snow White
Above the hills over Bad Wildungen, visit Snow White’s House, complete with seven beds for seven dwarves. These tiny houses, which are only around 20m², used to be miners’ houses. Learn about the reality which inspired the fantasy story. The life of a woman named Margaretha von Waldeck was the inspiration for the tale. Discover where the seven dwarves came from by heading to the nearby copper mine. For around 450 years, the mine was worked by men described as short and strong.
Later, perhaps visit the nearby town of Fritzlar. A magical Old Town of half-timbered houses, Fritzlar is simply picturesque. The crooked houses look like they’ve fallen off the pages of a storybook. A perfect place to potter – explore this pretty little town.
Upon returning to the hotel, be welcomed back with a traditional German concept – Kaffee und Kuchen! A jug of warm coffee and a delicious cake from a local patisserie awaits.
Spend the day in the medieval university town of Marburg, where the Grimms studied. Walk along the narrow and twisting alleys paved with cobblestones in the attractive upper town and venture to Landgrave Castle with sections dating back to the 10th century and fantastic views over the many higgledy-piggledy rooftops. Alternatively, spend the day experiencing Germany’s green heart in the Edersee national park, a UNESCO Heritage Park, where you can enjoy a cruise on the lake.
This evening, enjoy dinner in a local brewery to sample some of the areas famous produce – beer! Over a 3 course meal, you’ll be able to sample some of the brewery’s own tipple – Engelsbräu, or perhaps wine or soft drinks as four drinks are included in the package.
Depart Bad Wildungen
If time permits, enjoy some free time at leisure before departing from this beautiful fairytale world. Make an overnight stop on the way back to Calais.
Return to the UK
Check out of your overnight hotel and proceed to the port at Calais. Cross the Channel to Dover and continue on to your local area.
Hamelin, Hannover or Göttingen
This area is simply overrun with beautiful towns. Why not extend your tour to investigate further.
Head to Hannover, a delightful city with an eclectic character. It boasts a wealth of museums and cultural sites such as the magnificent Town Hall. It also has wonderful green spaces like the spectacularly baroque Herrenhäuser Garden.
For a further infusion of fairytales, perhaps head to Göttingen. In this charming university town, the Brothers Grimm lived and taught between 1829 and 1837. There’s plenty to explore.
Maritim Hotel Bad Wildungen ****
The Maritim Hotel Bad Wildungen is set in the spa town of the same name. The hotel is situated by a forest, overlooking the Kurpark public spa park, 2.4 km from Bad Wildungen train station. The rooms feature a TV, complimentary Wi-Fi, minibar and either Kurpark or forest views. There are 2 high-end eateries and a stylish bar with a seasonal terrace. Other perks include a stylish spa, an indoor pool and a fitness room, plus a playroom and 15 meeting rooms. Coach parking is available free of charge.
Ramada Kassel City Centre ****
The Ramada Kassel City Centre is attached to Kongress Palais Kassel’s convention centre and is a 14-minute walk from the Kassel-Wilhelmshöhe train station. The rooms offer free Wi-Fi, TVs and desks. Upgraded rooms add minibars and coffee-making facilities. There’s an informal restaurant with a garden terrace and a bar. Additional amenities include a fitness room, spa with a sauna, plus a business centre with 9 meeting rooms.
|Dates||Hotel||Half Twin||Single Supplement|
|Dates throughout 2021||Maritim Bad Wildungen||From £570.00 per person||From £175.00 per person|