10 Special Spring Trips in Europe: Imagine you open the window in the morning, your nose blows mild air, and there is a smell of flowers … Well, longing? Let’s go!
Tuscany: Up in Volterra
We drive through typical Tuscan countryside, cypresses, olive groves and vineyards, until we approach the rugged cliffs – and see Volterra on a hill: medieval city walls, jagged towers, massive fortress. The wind whistles, as if to rub my face, why the little town is called “Voleterra” means “flying earth”. And I fly on Volterra, because it is so uninhibited and despite its beauty and history not overrun. In the streets you stumble during the preseason at the most against flower tubs, not against lasting visitors. No queuing to climb the tower of the Palazzo dei Priori, the oldest town hall in Tuscany, no squeezing through the Porta all’Arco, the well-preserved city gate built by the Etruscans, the founders of the city, long before Christ’s birth. Volterra has been great at mining and trading alabaster for over 200 years, and I like the fact that there’s such a bumpy workshop shop as Rossi. Stomping through stone dust, I learn that pure alabaster sounds like crystal, and I enjoy the simple things that are made here. On the other hand, Palais Viti is splendid: the Vitis became rich with stone and in the 19th century turned everything but windy. (Doris Ehrhardt)
La Tabaccaia Toscana Resort Castelfalfi. Boutique hotel on an old country estate, 30 kilometers north of Volterra. Double / F from 152 Euro (Montaione, Località Castelfalfi, Tel. 00 39/05 71 89 20 00, www.castelfalfi.com , booking: www.tui.com ).
Ristorante Da Beppino. Slow food family business, homemade pasta, organic meat from our own farm, feel-good atmosphere. Reservations! (Volterra, Via delle Prigioni, 13/21, Tel. 00 39/058 88 60 51, www.dabeppino.com )
Rossi Alabastri. Founded in 1912, here pure alabaster is processed and sold (Volterra, Piazza della Pescheria, www.rossialabastri.com ).
Mainschleife: Great climate
Four low mountain ranges protect the Mainschleife from climatic problems: Rhön, Spessart, Odenwald and Steigerwald frame the river, which meanders in a picturesque curve on the slopes. Hundreds of grapevines have stood by them for many years, and the constant temperatures and humidity along the river as well as the strong sunshine on the steep slopes have given them the best – at the Mainschleife a “first layer” follows the other. As well as many roads are traffic-calmed, it is best to cycle or hike – and stop off to taste the mineral white wines. This is particularly good in the historic town of Volkach: With its city gates, the Baroque houses along the main street and the babbling fountain on the market square, it looks as though it had fallen out of time. Diagonally opposite the church is the hotel and winery “Zur Schwane”, since 1404 the oldest inn in town. Through a huge gate you get into the cozy courtyard with vine roof. Fine regional cuisine is served here, as well as the award-winning Schwane wines, which are stored one floor below, in the more than 600-year-old cellar. Half a million liters are pressed each year. “Of course this is difficult, with the hotel running and in the middle of the city center,” says winemaker Ralph Düker. But he would never give up his cellar: “The climate is just so great!” (Anja Haegele)
Stay & Enjoy
Romantic Hotel Zur Schwane. Carefully and with much style was modernized here: with larch parquet, leather furniture and all sorts of wine allusions, z. B. Muschelkalk in the bathroom. The gourmet restaurant serves fine Franconian cuisine. Highly recommended: The 4-course menu including corresponding wines for 75 euros. DZ / F from 122 Euro (Volkach, Hauptstr. 12, Tel. 093 81/806 60, www.schwane.de ).
Groningen: canals & high tech
In Groningen the arrival at the landmarked railway station of 1896 is an experience. The glamorous architecture puts me so much in the past that I honestly scare when the heavy wooden doors open automatically. Actually, the city center can be easily reached on foot, but my luggage is heavy, which is why I get in a taxi – an electric Tesla with double doors! Like in a spaceship, I glide past old pretty brick houses to the design hotel “The Student”. No sooner has the suitcase unpacked, I take – to get an overview – a canal cruise. Then a coffee in the futuristic roasting house “Mr. Mofongo”, which is also a restaurant, wine and cocktail bar. The shelves with the spirits extend over all floors and are controlled by robotic arms. Another highlight of Postmodernism is the Groninger Museum, which resides in three colorful, partly nested blocks lying in the water. I stay so long that there is no time to shop afterwards. Fortunately, Sundays open the downtown shops from 14 clock. I stroll through alleys with sounding names like Zwanestraat or Kromme Elleboog, treat myself with fries and “Bitterballen”, as the meat croquettes are called here, buy old Gouda and browse Dille & Kamille, a shop for home, garden and kitchen, for souvenirs. Groningen, I’ll be back! (Marie-Louise Barchfeld)
The Student Hotel. Modern design (not only) for young travelers. The house has a restaurant and an open bar and lounge area. DZ / F from 110 Euro (Groningen, Boterdiep 9, Tel. 00 31/502 06 91 61, www.thestudenthotel.com/groningen ).
Mr. Mofongo. Coffee, cocktails, wine and good food in a fancy modern atmosphere with service robots in the historic building. Main courses from 6 Euro (Groningen, Oude Boteringestraat 26, www.mofongo.nl ).
Canals. From the ship, the patrician houses look even more impressive. Departure opposite the station, tickets from 14 Euro (www.rondvaartbedrijfkool.nl). Groninger Museum. The collection ranges from Rubens to Koons, there are also great special exhibitions. Ticket from 18 Euro (Groningen, Museumeiland 1, www.groningermuseum.nl ).
Andalusia: Granada smells
The most tender way to be tickled from spring to summer from head to toe is to take a long walk through the gardens of the Palacio Generalife in Granada. They were designed by the gardeners of the Nasrid Sultan in the thirteenth century to appeal to all the senses at once: the scent of orange tree blossoms, jasmine and herbs rises in the air; red, orange and bright yellow flowers between rich green jump into the eye; the splashing of fountains whispers in the ears. All together, it awakens the spirits of life – and so it was thought when these gardens were created. The Generalife is located east of the Alhambra, but is felt to be Granada’s monumental city fortress. It is located on a hill with great views of the city and its gently undulating, in the spring still green surroundings. In the summer you are crowded here in scorching heat, now, however, the sun sweeps over the skin at a pleasant 20 to 25 degrees and there is room to enjoy for all. (Doris Ehrhardt)
Eurostars Catedral. New hotel in old walls, next to the cathedral. Modern rooms, soundproof windows, quiet courtyard. Double room from 104 Euro (Granada, 11 Calle Cárcel Baja, Tel. 00 34/958 80 83 99, www.eurostarscatedral.website ).
Enjoy El Huerto de Juan Ranas. Even locals like the winding restaurant with great views of Alhambra (Granada, Callejón Atarazana Vieja 6-8, www.elhuertodejuanranas.com ).
Experience Generalife. It is highly recommended to pre-purchase the tickets for Alhambra and Generalife in advance (tickets: alhambra-patronato.es/en/); Alhambra and Generalife 14 Euro, only Generalife 7 Euro (Granada, Paseo del Generalife 1c, www.alhambragranada.org ).
Upper Bavaria: yodelling elated
In front of me, Wettersteinkopf and Zugspitze are pointing their summits into the sky. A mountain shoe-heavy 180-degree turn, and I look at two glittering blue dots, the Starnberger and the Ammersee, and continue across the Isar valley to Munich. The Brauneck is one of the foothills and has what Alpenspitzen often missing: a brilliant wide-in-the-country 360-degree panoramic view. “Könna mia?” Asks Norbert, my yodelling teacher. Because it is a yodel hike that has taken me to the Lenggrieser mountain. “Ho-ei,” cries Norbert, “ho-ei,” I agree. Yodelling, says Norbert, expresses feelings. And even though it is an overcoming for me, the yodels tickle my heart. But borderline stretching elates. And the spring-like Isarwinkel is made to be fun. (Madlen Ottenschläger)
Lenggries mountain camping. Charming alpine chalets with lots of wood and light, some with a dream view of Brauneck. DZ / F from 66 Euro (Lenggries, Gilgenhöfe 4, Tel. 080 42/564 06 02, www.lenggrieser-bergcamping.de ).
Stie-Alm. The hike takes 45 minutes from the mountain station Brauneck to the pasture, where Marianne cooks refined Bavarian delicacies, eg. B. Kaspressknödel on salad with buttermilk dressing for about 11 € (Lenggries, Latschenkopf 5, Tel 080 42/23 36, www.stie-alm.de ).
Jodel hike. Two-day seminars to learn how to voice one’s feelings; 198 Euro (Tel. 080 42/978 67 06, www.yaggatatam.de ).
Lago di Mergozzo: Deep blue
If you do not live right by the lake, Lake Maggiore is the most beautiful from the water. Because even if the beautiful villas are beautiful to look at the shore you often do not come for miles. That’s another reason why I love the Lago di Mergozzo: it’s right next to it and was even part of the Maggiore before the scree brought by the Toce river over the centuries has provided a narrow piece of land between the two. On Lake Mergozzo there are green swimming spots and campsites right on the lake. In addition, the picturesque village of Mergozzo on the north shore, with dreamy streets and great views of peaks and deep blue. And an awe-inspiring story, as you can see in the small archeology museum. By the way, there are no big hotels here. “It will stay that way,” says Elena, who runs the museum. “Mountains and sea limit us, we can not grow strongly.” Hopefully she will be right! (Diana Helfrich)
Hotel Cannobio. Right on Lake Maggiore. DZ / F from 195 Euro (Cannobio, Piazza Vittorio Emanuele III 6, Tel. 00 39/03 23 73 96 39, www.hotelcannobio.com ).
Civico Museo Archeologico. Lovingly compiled collection on the history of the village Mergozzo. Admission 2 euros (Mergozzo, Via Roma 8).
Norway: Come, let us brood!
In the spring or early summer to northern Norway? Definitely! Because the Gulf Stream preserves the thousands of islets of the Helgeland region from overly frosty weather, and the days are longer than ours. For example, on Lovund, 500 inhabitants, only a few kilometers from the Arctic Circle. From the ship you can only see a huge, slightly beveled boulder in the sea for a long time. The wooden houses that jostle at its feet on the green foothills only emerge later, when the little feeder is almost reached. And then you go on board in a Lummerland atmosphere, which makes the steps immediately easier. No wonder that 200,000 puffins feel at home here, too. Most of the year they live on the ocean, but they breed in Lovund – every year in a huge swarm on the 14th of April. Another reason for a spring trip to the north! (Antje Kunstmann)
Flight. SAS flies daily via Copenhagen or Oslo to Brønnøysund. In addition, Norwegian and Widerøe fly from Oslo to the Helgeland coast in less than two hours every day. Tickets from about 200 Euro ( www.flysas.com , www.norwegian.com , www.wideroe.no ).
Stay & Enjoy
Lovund Hotell. The rooms have a fantastic panoramic view, and on the shore there are a number of red “fishermen’s cabins” with a terrace. DZ / F from about 130 euros (Lovund, Lovundveien 21, Tel. 00 47/75 09 20 30, www.lovund.no ).
Cycling tour. Helgelands island world can be discovered excellently by bike. If you want, book the bike directly from the airport. Approximately 30 euros per day ( www.visithelgeland.com ).
Lower Saxony: bathing in the sea of flowers
We like to travel to Hamburg from Hamburg for an afternoon excursion – in the spring for apple blossom, in autumn for harvesting. And every time I’m there, I think: Next time we’ll bring more time. As it is with good intentions – it usually takes a long time to implement them. When I finally stayed overnight in Buxtehude, I was thrilled: The city, which is called “Fairytale Town”, because the Brothers Grimm there the race between rabbit and hedgehog located there, is magical; with Fleth and the red brick half-timbered houses, it reminds me of a mini-Amsterdam. And because you can call the Old Country with reasonably flat, the area is ideal for biking: 15 kilometers are it from Buxtehude to Cranz to the Elbe, always along the Este, past centuries old, thatched yards and through apple orchards. How tender it smells, when the trees are blooming, is difficult to describe, you have to experience it. It is most beautiful when, as so often in the north, the wind blows and petals like snowflakes blow across the land. (Anja Haegele)
NSB Hotel Navigare. An old brick house, owned by the NSB shipping company. The 32 rooms are bright and friendly. DZ / F from 92 Euro (Buxtehude, Harburger Str. 4, Tel. 041 61/749 00, www.hotel-navigare.com ).
Organic farm Ottilie. In the beautiful garden there are between fruit trees beautiful cakes and juicy sheet cake (Mittelkirchen, place 19, www.biohof-ottilie.de ).
Mallorca: Finally nothing is going on here!
The scent of orange blossom blows in my nose, I hear birds chirping. I lazily blink at rich olive, carob and almond trees and realize once again: Mallorca is never as relaxing as it was in spring. I love this very special light, the locals are not annoyed, and the tourists are outnumbered. Since I do not miss a bit to fry on the beach, I walk, ride bike, enjoy good food, the peace and wants to be pampered. The romantic Fincahotel “Cases de Son Barbassa” on a huge managed estate in the rural northeast is just the right choice: a historic ensemble complete with defense tower, carefully restored, clear and reserved in a modern, bright country house style. With wooden beams under the ceiling, stone walls and lovely details: oranges in the roughly hewn vanity, pictures of local artists … casual luxury, as I like it. Also in the excellent restaurant, where the chef likes to cook with products from his own organic garden. If it gets cool again, you sit protected behind glass fronts and has views of the castle of the village of Capdepera and the mountains of the Sierra de Llevant. And I want to feel sand under my feet: The natural beach of Cala Agulla I need only a quarter of an hour by car. (Nicole Schmidt)
Sleep & enjoy
Cases de Son Barbassa. 20 rooms , spread over several houses – plenty of space for privacy DZ / F from 196 Euro, BRIGITTE readers receive by telephone booking until April 8, 10 percent reduction for the year 2019, keyword: “Spring” (Capdepera, Ctra Cala Mesquida – Camí de Son Barbassa, Tel. 34/971 56 57 76, www.sonbarbassa.de ).
Lesbos: The big glow
“Sweet smell of flowers blows from the meadow over here to me. Goddess of love! Receive my bouquet of flowers. “Actually, I’m not so into lyrics, but certainly there is no better place in the world to read Sappho’s” Ode to Aphrodite “than this high-lying chapel in the southeast of Lesbos – with shady ones The famous poet has lived on the East Aegean island for more than 2,500 years, and the richness of oral color could not have been more colorful and luscious, with hibiscus and oleander shining with wild mallow and rockrose Between the olive trees, the poppies weigh in the wind, and on our walk past the aqueduct of Moria, the scent of sun-kissed chamomile always blows up in our nostrils, so far it has always been the Mediterranean that has lured me to Greek islands. But on Lesvos you get the urge to run every day – with a view to a swim in the sea of flowers. (Christine Hohwieler)
Hotel Votsala. “No Disco, No Greek Evening, No Jet Ski”: Iannis and Daphne Vloumidi-Troumpounis are so enticing to lure you into their enchanting seafront hotel. But every morning there is an endless breakfast with classical music under olive trees. And many nice regulars. DZ / F from 50 Euro (Lesbos, Pyrgoi Thermis, Tel. 00 30/22 51 07 12 31, www.votsalahotel.com ).
Springwalking. Nana Lempesi and Nina Alexidis offer their guests ten days of nature and culture. Starting point is the “Villa Daphnis & Chloe”, which belongs to the hotel “Votsala”. The daily tours of the “Spring Walks” lead through gently undulating landscape, this year’s main topic is the mythology of the olive (date: 3-13 April, 10 days in a double room including half board from 800 Euro, over < a rel = "nofollow" class = "external-link" target = "_ blank" href = "https://www.vamos-geheimtipps.de/startseite/" "_blank" "noopener"> www.vamos-geheimtipps.de
From the steep slopes of the “Escherndorfer Lump” – Lump like rags, the plots are so small – come some of the best wines in Franconia
On a small island in the middle in the city lies the futuristic Groninger Museum
Even the watering yards are beguiling in the gardens of the Generalife
View of the Lago di Mergozzo, in the background the Lago Maggiore
< p> View over the hotel “Cases de Son Barbassa” to the sea
Lesbos in the spring: The great heat is still far – and everything is blooming