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Our Four Favourite Lakes in the Black Forest

We invite you to zoom in on four of our editors’ favourite lakes from our Schwarzwald Edition. Get ready to cool off in ice-cold glacial lakes on hot summer days. Let your mind wander as you take in the majestic forest views from the shoreline. And enjoy little adventures along wild riverbanks!

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1 NORTH

Fermasee

Karlsruhe city centre 15 km
Car <30 min
PT <45 min

tmttl Fermasee Schwarzwald Norden 10

From the minute you reach the parking lot of this small yet picturesque natural basin, you feel like you’re on vacation. Fermasee is carefully tucked away in a part of the Black Forest that features mature orchard meadows. Bathing is only permitted in one section of the lake’s southern side because most of its shoreline is part of a nature conservation area. Relaxing spots under the crisp shade of trees and bathing spots with shallow waters await. As you make your way down the slope to the water’s edge, a cluster of islands emerges from this gem’s waters. Fermasee is a true haven for protected flora and fauna. Visitors here can spend hours watching the sunlight dancing in the treetops and schools of tiny fish darting through its clear waters from the shore.

Schwarzwald Edition
p. 34

Directions Parkplatz Fermasee

2 SOUTH

Isteiner Schwellen

Freiburg city centre 60 km
Car <45 min
PT <75 min

tmttl Isteiner Schwellen Schwarzwald Süden 4

Where the Upper Rhine River now rushes through polished rocky ridges, a massif once stood in its northward path. The Black Forest’s wild terrains that trace Isteiner Schwellen comprise clusters of small rock pools, shallow gravel beds and abundant plant life. A day trip to Isteiner Schwellen feels like an extended vacation. Adventure seekers can carefully make their way from pool to pool on foot. Countless secluded spots where you can dip your feet into the water and experience the Rhine’s raw beauty await. Further north, the current fans out into a landscape of shallow, natural gravel-bed channels giving way to a series of fantastic bathing spots. Those who aren’t keen to plunge into these icy waters can still enjoy a leisurely picnic on the rocks.

Schwarzwald Edition
p. 104

Directions Parkplatz Isteiner Schwellen

3 SOUTH

Nonnenmattweiher

Freiburg city centre 38 km
Car <45 min
PT <150 min

tmttl Nonnenmattweiher Schwarzwald Süden 5 (1)

This postcard-worthy little lake in the forest invites you to venture into its sloped basin surrounded by spruce trees. Nonnenmattweiher is located in the southern Black Forest, about 40-minute drive west of Feldberg. A sunbathing lawn provides access to the part of the lake that is roped off and designated for swimmers. The waters and floating peat isle that lie beyond this barrier are protected. Back on the shore, you can have a barbecue, nosh on snacks in the designated picnic area or grab a table at the fishing hut near the parking lot. We highly recommend taking a walk around the lake before heading home. Nonnenmattweiher’s dreamy pond is most enchanting towards the end of the day when the sun is low in the sky. This region offers an abundance of hiking trails: panoramic trails at Belchengipfel and Rapsfelsen, for example, are just a 30-minute drive from here.

Schwarzwald Edition
p. 132

Directions Parkplatz Nonnenmattweiher

4 NORTH

Königswaldsee

Karlsruhe city centre 80 km
Car <60 min
PT <90 min

tmttl Königswaldsee Schwarzwald Norden 12 (1)

There’s something truly magical about this hidden forest lake. Perhaps, because it’s only accessible on foot or by bicycle. Or maybe it’s the ancient trees whose roots wrap around its shorelines. Königswaldsee’s narrow circular path will guide you straight to the large sunbathing lawn on its southeastern shore. Here, you can spread your towel under the shade of old willows and slowly wade into the lake’s shallows. If you feel like having a little bay all to yourself for the day, head toward the forest and take your pick from one of the more secluded swimming spots. The remainder of the nature trail puts the lake’s diversity on full display. As you walk, take in the views of the island, watch swans paddle through the scenery and enjoy the Black Forest’s dense foliage and rolling foothills in all their splendour.

Schwarzwald Edition
p. 44

Directions Königswaldsee

The Black Forest and Rheinland: A Collection of Stunning Waters and Getaways in Nature

Our Take Me to the Lakes series comprises eight slow travel guides featuring selected bathing spots from Elbe River’s banks down to Lake Constance’s shorelines. For our latest addition to the series, Take Me to the Lakes – Schwarzwald Edition, we travelled to Germany’s largest and highest low mountain range. We invite you to pack your hiking boots and swimsuits and explore this stunning region from the water’s edge. The Black Forest’s untouched landscapes are brimming with diverse flora and fauna. We curated this guide to help you experience everything from its expansive coniferous forests and colourful traditional costumes to popular attractions, such as Feldberg and Schluchsee.

Moss-covered roots, ancient landscapes, sparse woodlands—countless paths lead you through stunning scenery and straight to the Black Forest’s most pristine lakes. To kick off your Black Forest adventures, we included eight recommendations for luxurious accommodations in nature. So make yourself comfortable alone, as a couple, as a family or with friends after long days on the lake and hiking.

Please note that our Schwarzwald Edition is currently only available in German.

 

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