Over the years I have become a self-proclaimed expert on cute villages in Germany. Germany is full with cities and villages that consist of colorful half-timbered (fachwerk) houses that are relatively undiscovered. You will mainly encouter German tourists in these villages, as foreign tourists seem to have no idea on what Germany has to offer. Whenever we travel through Germany we always try to visit a fachwerk town. In this blogpost I will highlight my favorite destinations in Germany.


Baden-Baden is mainly famous with elderly people, but this spa town is an excellent destination for families and couples as well. I visited during summer and autumn and both times loved the colorful city center, parks and spa options. Though it’s not the biggest secret in the world, you can still visit it without making dinner reservations!


Beilstein is Cochem’s less famous brother and is one of the most beautiful towns in the Mosel area. The combination of the river, the vineyards and fachwerk houses makes Beilstein a very good visit. It is especially worth it to stay the night in Beilstein, as you can have the whole town to yourself until 10.30AM and after 5PM.


Apparently Berchtesgaden can get busy during summertime, but we visited in winter and absolutely loved how quiet and still atmospheric it was. Berchtesgaden is surrounded by the German alps and nearby you can find the superblue Königssee. I have created a travel guide to explore several days in this area.


If you are looking for the prettiest town near the Mosel: Bernkastel-Kues is your best option! I really wanted to take pictures with the small wine bar and was surprised that it was quite easy to take this picture. It doesn’t get busy in the city center until 11AM and if you venture out of the main streets it is relaxed for the whole day. Bernkastel-Kues totally reminded me of the towns of the Alsace.


I was super surprised at how charming Bremen turned out to be. It is not a tourist hotspot, more of a shopping hub for the surrounding villages, and it definitely deserves more tourists! The old Schnoor borough was super picturesque with pretty fachwerk houses and independent stores.


Looking for Mosel charm, but without the cruise tourists that come with it? Eltville is located at the Rheingau, which is a tributary of the Mosel. The city center is filled with fachwerk houses, a castle with a rose garden and a riverside promenade with a wine tasting stand. I visited Eltville as a day trip from Wiesbaden.

Esslingen am Neckar

Esslingen was one of the first gems that I discovered. We drove by on our way home from our summer holiday and stayed there for one night. No tourist to see, just locals and a super charming compact city center decorated with colorful flowers.


Of all of the gems on this list, Freiburg is probably the least hidden. It is slowly getting popular with tourists outside of Germany and I expect Freiburg to be booming over the next years. Freiburg is very green, with a river flowing through the city and biergartens overlooking the old town giving a very vibrant vibe!


Fachwerk, but make it white and aesthetic. Freudenberg consists of fachwerk houses that are all really similar in exterior, creating a beautiful sight. Freudenberg is such a hidden gem that you cannot expect restaurants to be open all day. It is still on my wishlist to see Freudenberg covered in snow, which must be such a magical sight.

Füssen: Füssen is located at the Romantische Strasse so it is no surprise to find it on a list with my favorite German gems! The town center is pastel picture perfect and you can spot the surrounding Alps. Füssen is the perfect hub to explore nearby Schloss Neuschwanstein, but is surprisingly relaxed.

Garmisch-Partenkirchen: Another Bavarian favorite; actually these are two towns that together create Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Of the two Partenkirchen is the more colorful, more quaint one, absolutely enchanting. My family yearly goes skiing in this area and I was happy to discover this gem. In the are you can also visit the Partnachklamm, which is one of the prettiest gorges in Europe.

Hann Münden: Hann Münden is located in a not too touristic area of Germany and therefore often overlooked as a location of interest. We stopped in Hann Münden on our way to Prague and were impressed with the enormous amount of fachwerk houses and local feel of the town. If you are looking for the ideal period to visit, try to visit the Christmas markets here!

Heidelberg: Heidelberg also doesn’t attract a lot of foreign tourists, but it definitely has a lot to offer. Last year I visited Heidelberg for the Christmas markets because I wanted to see the beautiful ice skating rink. What adds extra charm to Heidelberg are the ruins overlooking the old town.

Heppenheim: You have probably never heard of Heppenheim, which is such a shame as it is one of the cutest towns in Germany. The area in which Heppenheim is located is famous for its wines and when we visited there was a fun wine festival going on. If red fachwerk buildings covered in vines sound good to you, you must visit Heppenheim.

Idstein: Idstein is one of the least famous towns on this list, but it has a very lively center. I loved how quiet Idstein was in the morning and how it slowly became lively during the day. It features some of the most detailed fachwerk houses I have ever seen and has a lovely town square overlooking these beautiful buildings.

Landshut: Landshut is not located near one of the main highways in Germany so you have to put in a little bit of effort to get here, but I promise you it is worth it. The main shopping streets of Landshut are a true pastel fairytale, it almost seems fake. But it is real, so go visit!

Monschau: Monschau is situated beautifully in the Eiffel, which is an interesting area for its nature. There is a river flowing through this little town, which adds such a nice atmosphere. This area is well known amongst cyclists, but just visiting for the historic town center is a great option too.

Rothenburg ob der Tauber: Okay I cheated, Rothenburg is not a hidden gem. In fact it is one of the most touristy towns in the Romantische Strasse and for very good reason. In Rothenburg it seems like Christmas year-round with all the gingerbread houses. If you are able to visit during the shoulder season, take that chance because it gets very busy in summer and during Christmas.

Schwäbisch Hall: Schwäbisch Hall really took me by surprise. We visited on our way back from our Balkan trip. I loved the combination of fachwerk buildings, but combined with diverse restaurants and a young, urban scene. Stupidly enough we didn’t venture out of the center enough to photograph the river with the fachwerk houses behind it, don’t skip the iconic view.

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