- Quedlinburg - UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Wernigerode - the colorful town in the Harz
- Halberstadt - Gateway to the Harz
This impressive park and garden complex is situated adjacent to the hotel. The ensemble of palace gardens, totaling 107 hectares, is one of the largest and oldest (1668) in the state of Saxony-Anhalt. They comprise of the:
- Palace park and former royal hunting ground
- Pheasant Garden
- Terrace Garden and Hill Garden
The Baroque gardens are amongst the ten loveliest parks and gardens in Germany today. In 2012 it was awarded the prestigious Green Flag Award, Great Britain’s benchmark national standard for parks and green spaces.
Regenstein Castle ruins
The remnants of the Regenstein Castle, first mentioned in 1169, are found on an unusual rock outcrop about three kilometers north of Blankenburg. Of particular interest are the 32 rooms and trenches carved into the rock face, most of which are open to visitors. The entire area is now an open air museum. Discovered in a few of the fortified enclosures were historical remains from this period. On a clear day from this high vantage point one can see up to 50 kilometers away in every direction.
Visit the Ritterlichen Adler- und Falkenhof (Noble Eagle and Falcon Court) at the Regenstein fortification to see birds of prey, vultures and owls in free flight and experience their awesome power in their presence.
Grand Palace Blankenburg
High above the town is the Grand Palace Blankenburg. The baroque structure sits majestically atop the Blankenstein, a 300-meter high limestone mount. The symbol of the city, it is the fourth structure to be built here, having risen from the remnants of a medieval castle and Renaissance palace. From early fortification to elegant palace, Grand Palace Blankenburg with its close links to the Duchy of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel and the most important royal houses of Europe has been witness to a millennium of tumultuous history. Like its changing occupants, both times of peace and times of conflict have left their indelible marks. The Baroque architecture remains to this day. Further changes to the structure were carried out as the palace was converted to other uses in the 19th and 20th century.
Abandoned for years, the palace fell into terrible disrepair. Effort is currently underway by the Association for the Saving of the Palace Blankenburg to return the palace to its original glory.
Located in the outskirts of Blankenburg, it is the once Cistercian Abbey Michaelstein. This impressive cloister is waiting to be explored - from the historical to the modern, for its natural surroundings, architecture and music.
Thanks to extensive restoration and building work, the monastic cells dating back to the Late Roman and Gothic period have been preserved. The solemnity of the Cistercian abbey captivates the visitor around every corner, from the cloister to the refectory to the chapter house.
Two cloister gardens with their wealth of heirloom plants are another attraction. Both gardens were conceived and laid out according to plans and sketches dating back to the Middle Ages. Cultivated in the herbal garden are 260 species that have healing properties. The vegetable garden is testimony to the diversity of plant nutrition in the Middle Ages.
The installation SoundTimeSpace - Exploring the mystery of music, is a time machine that transports visitors back past four centuries of music history: an auditory tour de force of sound and light set to Bach's Christmas oratorium, exciting hands-on activities and historical instruments on display.
From the start music filled the hallowed cloister spaces: where once the chants of Cistercian monks resounded, today it is the voices and instruments of the music academy students that ring through the halls. Over the centuries, sounds and instruments have changed. This transformation of SOUND – TIME – SPACE is explored in the music exhibition with the help of musical instruments from four centuries drawn from all over Europe.
The cloister conducts a number of different tours. Every Sunday between April to October visitors can join the CloisterEras tour to learn about the working life of the monks in the farmyard and their private life in their cells. Discover the cloister gardens on another tour or take a look behind the scenes in the recently opened "music barn." The evening tours undertaken in candlelight are particularly atmospheric during the darker seasons of the year. Visits to one of the abbey's many top class concerts are also highly recommended.
A series of water mills have stood in and around Blankenburg since the 14th century. Of the 5 mills within and 7 mills outside the town wall, only the Upper Mill and the Münz Mill remain to this day.
The Upper Mill located on the palace mount is visible from afar. First mentioned in 1453, the mill has been completely restored in recent years.
The Münz Mill due west of Regenstein was a water-driven flour mill belonging to the castle complex between the 12th and 16th century. It contains a fully operating 20th century milling mechanism. Today the mill serves as a museum.
The Regensteinmühle (Regenstein Mill) is named after the River Münze that used to run nearby during the Middle Ages. Its fully working milling mechanism dates back to the turn of the 20th century. Today it is opened as a museum.
The Regenstein Mill, situated west of Regenstein Castle, was a water mill used for grinding grain, that was once part of the castle complex between the 12th and 16th century. Rediscovered later, it has been refitted with two water wheels. Located along a scenic woodland route, it is an ideal stop for young and old alike.
The cave complex located to the north of the ruins of Regenstein Castle in the Sande with the Deding Stone at the center is a one of a kind. Up until the end of the 19th century, starting in the Middle Ages, these caves were quarried for its pure, white sand used to scrub wood and stone floors. In ancient times this site was used for the thing assembly.
Teufelsmauer (Devil’s Wall)
“God and the Devil were fighting over ownership of the Earth; they agreed God would keep the fertile flatlands while the Devil would get the ore-bearing Harz Mountain – that is if he could build a wall before the first rooster crow. The Devil set about building it at the edge of the Harz. Before the last stone could be laid, the rooster had crowed. The Devil had worked in vain, and soon after the wall collapsed.”
People have been visiting Blankenburg for this most striking and famous of geological landmark since time immemorial. The section of the wall called the Heidelburg, stretching from the eastern edge of the town to the district Timmenrode all the way to Weddersleben-Neinstedt, makes the landscape here unique. Inspiring writers across the ages, this bizarre natural formation has been the source of numerous folktales and sagas.
Within this section of the wall is the Gewittergrotte (Thunderstorm Cavern) and the Fuchsbau (Fox Burrow), a manmade grotto. The eastern end of the Blankenburg Teufelsmauer is dominated by a small Medieval stronghold, the Kucksburg.
Quedlinburg - UNESCO World Heritage Site
Stroll through the UNESCO-designated world heritage town and explore 8 centuries-worth of half-timbered architecture in Quedlinburg.
Built atop a sandstone mount is the beautiful thousand-year old Romanesque Church of St. Servatius, which became the symbol of the city. Visit the atmospheric vault housing the Quedlinburg church treasures and the tombs of Germany’s first king, Heinrich the First, and queen, Mathilde.
Not to be missed are the Münzenberg housing the remnants of the Marien Cloister and the millennium-old Wiperti Crypt.
Distance from hotel: 12 km
Hexentanzplatz (Witches Dance Floor)
Jutting 454 meters above sea level in the Bode Valley, the Witches’ Dance Floor is located across from the other granite crag, the Rosstrappe. This storied site covers 60 hectares. The Witches Dance Floor can be ascended on foot or a cable car lift. Whichever way you choose, the trip up is breathtaking and unforgettable.
Take a leisurely ride in a cable car lift up to the 403-meter-high granite crag of the Rosstrappe, located on the upper left bank of the Bode River. The Rosstrappe can also be ascended on foot along the President’s Route. On top of the crag is a giant impression of a horse’s roof. Centuries of sagas and legends have sprung up around it. The most famous of which tells of the giant Bodo, the beautiful princess Brunhilde and how the legendary hoof print was made.
Bodetal Therme Spa
Enjoy the revitalizing effects of the salt water pool and feel the stress and tension melt away by gentle underwater music and atmospheric light play. From the outdoor warm water pool, you can gaze upon the magnificent Bode Gorge. For the youngest visitors, a kiddy basin full of colorful water toys turns their pool day into a memorable experience.
Feeling peckish after the swim? The spa’s restaurant ensures your appetite will not be left wanting. Sample from a large menu of seasonal dishes and international delectable made from fresh ingredients.
The spa’s multi-sauna complex and the spa and therapeutic salt water complex leave nothing to be desired. From body packs to a Turkish sauna to classical massages – pick and choose what you want for the day and let yourself be transported.
Distance from the hotel: 7 km
Wernigerode - the colorful town in the Harz
Visit the Harz’s “colorful town,” and be enchanted by the charms of the historical old town. Located 15 kilometers from Blankenburg, Wernigerode’s countless attractions make for a worthwhile excursion.
Town hall market square
Dominating the market square of this 34,000-inhabitant town is the historical town hall. The town hall is a gem among medieval timber-frame artistry. First mentioned in 1277 as a playhouse, it came into the possession of the Wernigerode counts. The building has served variously as a courthouse, pleasure palace for dancing and acrobatic shows, and a venue for weddings.
The Palace Wernigerode reigns high above the town. Originally built in the Middle Ages as a fortress to protect the royal hunting route, it was converted in the late 17th century into a romantic circular palace by the imperial architect Carl Frühling at the behest of Count Ernst zu Stolberg-Wernigerode. The result of this is a circular palace of romantic charms.
With its immense wealth of interior architectural details and parklands (the pleasure garden, royal hunting ground and terrace garden) the palace has been listed in the National Registry for Cultural Monuments since 1999.
Your stay in the Harz would not be complete without a visit to the Palace Wernigerode.
May – October: daily 10am to 6pm (last entry: 5:30pm)
November – April: Tuesday – Friday 10am - 5pm (last entry: 4pm)
Hourly tours start at the top of the hour.
Saturday, Sunday and holidays 10am – 6pm (last entry: 5:30pm)
Distance from hotel: 16,4 km
Halberstadt - Gateway to the Harz
The unmistakable silhouette of the 1200-year-old bishopric town is easily recognized from afar.
The imposing Halberstadt Cathedral has for centuries been the spiritual hub of the Harz region. Modelled after a French cathedral, the church is opened all year round to visitors. In summer, it is used for church services and concerts.
One of the largest church treasures in the world is found in the Halberstadt Cathedral. It houses the most extensive collection of medieval artworks and religious relics found in Europe today.
Other attractions include the Our Lady of the Church (1146), notable for its 4 towers; the former Cistercian Burchardi Monastery, site of the John Cage Organ Project; the Spiegelsberg Park, featuring a zoo and the world’s oldest wine barrel.
Distance from hotel: 16,7 km