Cool Waters in the Wilderness

Refreshing Mini Adventures in Baden-Württemberg

Rafting-Tour im Murgtal

Rafting in the Murgtal Valley | © TMBW, Foto: Gregor Lengler

STUTTGART – Get out of the house and into the water! In Baden-Württemberg it is never far to the next water adventure. Whether it's a river cave expedition in the Swabian Alb, canyoning in the Black Forest or SUP (stand-up paddleboard) yoga on Lake Constance, if you’re looking for more than just refreshment on your holiday, Southwest Germany is the right place for you.


Trapper Feeling on the Neckar River: Canoe Tour with Gin Workshop in the Odenwald Forest

Glide through the ‘Odenwald Everglades’ like a trapper in a canoe on the Neckar River and distil your own moonshine gin at the end of the journey: The distilling workshop at the Englert Distillery will give you that Wild West feeling. During Prohibition in the US, ‘moonshine’ referred to illegally distilled liquor, usually sold in jars, which was highly intoxicating due to its high alcohol content. However, the aftermath was often inevitable because of the poor quality of the spirits. Fortunately, the distilling event in the old town of Gundelsheim offers expert guidance and the individual choice of botanicals result in special creations that you can take home and enjoy without regrets.


El Dorado for Treasure Hunters: Gold Panning at the Upper Rhine

With a length of over 1,233 kilometres from Switzerland to the North Sea, the Rhine is one of the most important rivers in Europe and one of the busiest waterways in the world. More than 437 kilometres of the river run through Southwest Germany, offering plenty of space for a variety of water experiences, from punting to rafting. In Weil am Rhein, treasure hunters and adventurers can indulge in a gold rush experience and encounter millennia-old traditions and real myths: Equipped with a washboard and a gold panning disc, the search for the legendary Rhine gold takes visitors into the waters of ‘Father Rhine’.


Wild Water: Riverbed Hiking in the Murgtal Valley

Tens of millions of years ago, ice and water formed the natural landscape of the Black Forest. Action fans can experience Earth history live while canyoning or hiking through riverbeds. In Todtnau in the Black Forest Highlands or in the Murgtal Valley in the Northern Black Forest, where the Murg River still flows in its original riverbed. The first adrenaline rush comes from rappelling from a height of 15 meters. Then, you hike over hill and dale through the middle of the riverbed. To prevent the tour from becoming a slippery experience, sturdy shoes are a must. Afterwards, you can plunge into the rapids while soft rafting.


Get In and Switch Off: Punting in the Taubergiessen Nature Reserve

One place, four different experiences: A punting trip in the Taubergiessen Nature Reserve at the Upper Rhine always follows the same route but offers a completely new look each season. Sometimes nature is in full bloom, sometimes the mist is wafting over the wetlands. What remains is the incomparable calm that wraps around you as the wooden boat glides through the waters of the Blinde Elz River. The silence is only broken by occasional calls from the animal population in the nature reserve near Rust. The boatmen know them all by name – and are happy to introduce them to their guests.


Off to the Underworld: Cave Tour in Bad Urach

The Swabian Alb is considered one of the most cave-rich regions in Europe. Around 2,500 natural and show caves are spread across the karst mountains. One of the longest caves in the region is the Falkenstein Cave (Falkensteiner Höhle) near Bad Urach. It cuts about five kilometres into the rock and is the only water-bearing cave in Germany where tours are possible. Equipped with a wetsuit, helmet, and headlamp, the adventure can begin. After passing through the impressive entrance portal, you enter the cave by mastering a narrow passage called ’Demutsschulf’. Then it gets dark.


Close to Nature: Birdwatching at Lake Federsee

There is a lot to discover for bird and nature lovers at Lake Federsee in Upper Swabia. Wooden boardwalks take you through one-meter-high reeds to the observation points. The 33-square-kilometre nature reserve is the largest moorland in Baden-Württemberg and a habitat for numerous plant and animal species. Ornithologists travel from all over Germany to see some of the 272 bird species that live here. For example, for the rare bearded reedling or the common grasshopper warbler, whose whirring chirping sounds like a bicycle passing by. With a bit of luck, you might spot them on one of the birdwatching tours offered all year round.


Keeping the Balance: Sunrise SUP Yoga on Lake Constance

Even before the first rays of sunshine touch the surface of the water, we head out onto Lake Constance from Reichenau Island on a stand-up paddle board (SUP). While the cool morning air is still calm, the yoga group prepares for the sun salutation. Now it's time to take a deep breath and keep your balance. Because in SUP yoga, the ground always moves with you. The body is strengthened and the mind finds peace until the gentle waves of the lake and the warming sun carry you into the new day.