Today, I’m sharing some special information/having a guest post from Sophia Kulich, owner of Sophia’s Travels.
I’ve been on many tours in my life and have friends and relatives who have, too. You want an interesting, well-read person who has seen the world leading your tour, with no agenda other than a desire to show you fabulous things. I was recently on a tour where I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why I found myself at a particular house. It had super-marginal/dubious historical importance and pretty much looked like the house where I grew up, decorating wise. I found out that the tour operator was getting married there the following week, getting a discount for shuttling us there!
You’re not going to find that on one of Sophia Kulich’s tours. Here’s info about her tour through Germany’s Fairy Tale Route:
Fairy tales, sagas and legends are brought to life in many places, since the Brothers Grimm were at home along the German Fairy Tale Route. The diverse landscapes and scenes along the Fairy Tale Route are varied but always magical. Starting in Bremen with the Bremer Town Musicians via Hamelin with the Pied Piper and ending in Hanau, where the Brothers Grimm were born. The Brothers Grimm ensured that the tales and legends which ordinary people and citizens used to entertain themselves in the evenings have been preserved for us. In addition to other work in linguistic and literary research, they collected countless fairy tales over a period of six years until the first volume of “Grimm’s Fairy Tales” was published in 1812.
Immerse yourself in the world of fairy tales, visit museums and fairytale houses or got to one of the many enchanting fairytale-related events: there are theatre shows, musicals and storytelling hours for old and young. And you can come again and again and live happily ever after!
Day 1: Arrival Upon arrival at Bremen airport you transfer to your hotel for overnight.
Sail City****, Bremerhaven, www.atlantic-hotels.de/sailcity
BW Hotel Schaper Siedenburg***, Bremen, www.siedenburg.bestwestern.de
Day 2: Bremen – Bremerhaven – Bremen (120kms)
Bremen, the 1200 years old Hanseatic city and home to the world-famous Bremen Town Musicians. It is a must to see the magnificent Rathaus (Town Hall) with its stunning Weser Renaissance architecture and the graceful Roland statue.
Since 2004, both have been designated UNESCO World Heritage sites. Bremen has so many wonderful aspects. There is the picturesque Schoor, the city’s oldest living quarter, the exceptional architectural heritage of the Böttcherstraße, the Bremen Cathedral and, last but not least, the adventures of Universum Bremen and the maritime promenade Schlachte that invites one to stroll along the Weser.
The Bremen Town Musicians appear often throughout Bremen, not only in front of the Town Hall but also in the guild’s courtyard in the Böttcherstrasse, where they adorn the fountain, or in the oldest quarters of Schnoor. Whoever wants to meet them personally has come to the right place. Here in the Hanseatic city the town musicians tell their own story – live, large as life, open air und free. From May to September every Sunday at 12 noon in the Cathedral courtyard, city centre.
Day 3: Hamelin (190kms) Embedded into the gentle hills of the Weser Mountains lies the town of Hamelin. Amongst Cinderella and the Lying Baron of Münchhausen this is the home of the darkest fellow from the German Fairy-tale Route – the Pied Piper. The Pied Piper, who in 1284 appeared in Hamelin, since centuries is the town´s landmark and world famous.
You can explore the city together with the Pied Piper and listen to the Glockenspiel chimes on the Hochzeitshaus “Weddindg House” 11:35am. Between May and September you can attend a Pied Piper Open Air Play, performed every Sunday at noon in the middle of the old town centre (admission free). Rest of the day at leisure.
Schlosshotel Münchhausen*****, Arzen, www.schlosshotel-muenchhausen.com
Ringhotel Stadt Hameln****, Hamelin, www.hotel-stadthameln.de
Hotel Bellevue***, Hamelin, www.hotel-bellevue-hameln.de
Day 4: Bodenwerder – Kassel (150kms) Bodenwerder is the birthplace of Münchhausen. Its landmarks are scattered throughout this historic Old Town which began on a former island. Family von Münchenhausen’s former estate includes today’s Rathaus (Town Hall) as well as Schulenberg, a lovely grotto pavilion and hillside gardens. In the Kemnade district is a Gothic style Abbey Church.
The Baron of Münchhausen and his company of table invite you to see the Münchhausen performance in front of the town hall every first Sunday between May and October. Then onward to Kassel. The Brothers Grimm were brought to Kassel by their aunt in 1798 and stayed on in Kassel for over thirty years. Your sightseeing tour of the city includes the Statue of Herkules, Wilhelmshöhe Castle with Europe’s biggest and unique hill park the Bergpark Wilhelmshöhe offers romantic nature and fascinating play of water, the ruins of Lion’s Castle and The Brothers Grimm Museum.
Take the time to discover and enjoy Kassel, then you will understand why, in 1830, Jakob Grimm said: “The time I spent in Kassel were the happiest years of my life”. Overnight in Kassel
Adesso Hotel Astoria***, Kassel, www.adessohotel.com
Golden Tulip****, Kassel, www.hotelreiss.de
Day 5: Hofgeismar – (60kms) The Dornroschenschloss Sababurg, the Sleeping Beauty castle of Brothers Grimm fame, dates back to 1334. Discover the famous story on the Sleeping Beauty fairytale tour with steel cuttings by Alfons Holtgreve, visit the medieval castle garden and culinary herb and flower garden with historic roses, tulips, shrubs and herbs, enjoy viewing of the Sleeping Beauty turret and the castle ruins. From April to October, visitors can have an audience with Sleeping Beauty and Prince Charming on Sundays at 4:30 pm in English. Return to Kassel for overnight.
Day 6: Hess. Lichtenau – Ebersgotzen (140kms) Even today, the old city wall of Hess. Lichtenau with its defense towers from the 14th century encircles the crooked alleys with half-timbered houses evoking the romantic, fairy-tale flair of the days of dukes and landgraves.
The portly Old Town Hall from 1654 and the Gothic parish church from the 15th century dominate the aspect of the historic old town. A favourite hiking destination at the Hohe Meissner Mountain is the Mother Hulda Pond, one of the nicest and cosiest places. The Brothers Grimm collected tales and sagas from everywhere and the fairy tale of Mother Hulda originated from a legend about this pond. The Wilhelm Busch Mill, loated in Ebergotzen, as a memorial place with mill museum presents an instructive slice of history on the life and work of Wilhelm Busch and a still operational ancient milling system. Wilhelm Busch and his friend Erich Bachmann played the silly tricks of “Max and Moritz” in this mill. Return to Kassel for overnight.
Day 7: Steinau an der Strasse – Hanau – Frankfurt (220kms) Steinau an der Strasse is the magical town where the authors of some of the best loved children’s fairy stories spent their formative years. Here is where the Brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm spent their childhood (1791-1798). They wrote the enchanting stories such as Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella or Hansel and Gretel. It is like stepping back in time to a fairy tale town with a street of medieval half-timbered houses, a splendid renaissance palace, a puppet theatre and a magnificent town hall.
A walk along the main street, Brüder-Grimm-Strasse, allows you to soak up the atmosphere of the town. The visit of the Grimm Brothers House is a must. The museum houses a collection of over 200 manuscripts, examples of the brothers’ work, many family portraits and artefacts. It also details the great contribution they made to language, literature and law. Their work has been translated into 140 languages and is the most widespread literature available after the bible. In the courtyard of the Amtshaus situated in an outbuilding is a new museum detailing the history of the trading-route from Frankfurt to Leipzig and Steinau.
A short walk to the Town Square brings you to the Town Hall, the Castle and the Puppet Theatre. Situated in the centre of the Town Square is the Fairytale Fountain. This fountain depicts many scenes from the Brothers Grimm fairy tales. The great hall in the imposing renaissance palace contains an exhibition of puppets from India, China, Poland and other countries.
We do recommend to attend a performance in the puppet theatre whilst in Steinau. The performances sometimes have more adults than children in the audience. It is for all of you that are still children at heart! Then onward to Hanau, birthplace of the Brothers Grimm. The sightseeing tour includes the Grimm Monument, the Town Hall, Philippsburg Castle. Onward to Frankfurt for overnight.
Hotel Rödelheimer Hof***, Frankfurt, www.roedelheimer-hof.de
NH HotelCity Centre****, Frankfurt www.nh-hotels.com
Day 8: Departure
This is suggested itinerary, perfect for families.
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It can done with private driver or self-drive.
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