The city in southwestern Germany which lies in the Upper Rhine Valley between the French Vosges Mountains and the Black Forest to the east, enjoys a pleasant warm climate. Its story begins with a castle (Freiburg – “free castle”) of the Zähringer Duke in 1008. Today the vibrant university town with over 30,000 students is a stronghold in the world for solar energy research and one of the few German cities with a “green” mayor. The picturesque, traffic-free old town with its magnificent cathedral lends itself to a leisurely stroll, to shop or to dine. South of the city the Schauinsland rises, – one of the most beautiful mountains in the southern Black Forest. And a few kilometers north the Kaiserstuhl (Emperor’s Chair), a range of hills where rare plants and excellent wines grow, emerges from the Rhine plains.
Distant views of Mont Blanc
To the south of Freiburg lies a mountain peak called Schauinsland (“look into the country”); with 1284 meters one of the best viewpoints in the Black Forest. Especially in the fall, when the mountains rise “above the clouds” phenomenal views open up: to the Vosges, the Hornisgrinde and the Bernese Alps, even to Mont Blanc. Those who do not want to hike to the summit can take the Schauinsland-Tram.