Have you heard about the beautiful Königssee before? This beautiful lake has become really famous lately as its stunning waterfall and unique nature pools are all over Instagram at the moment. We had this place on our bucket list for quite some time so we were more than excited that we got the chance to explore this area together with the amazing Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden.
The following blogpost might sound like a Bavarian love letter but have a look at our pictures and I’m sure you will fall in love with this place as well!
Useful topolindra travel facts:
- The national park Berchtesgaden is only 20 minutes away from Salzburg, 2 hours away from Munich or 1,5 hours away from Hallstatt (by car). So if you are planning to visit any of these locations make sure to visit the area around Berchtesgaden as well!
- The Königssee might be the most popular location in Berchtesgaden, but there are many more places to explore: Obersee (lake), Hintersee (lake), Jenner (mountain), Rossfeld panorama route, the secret waterfall and many more.
- The whole area around Berchtesgaden is a paradise for hikers! There are so many different and beautiful hiking routes, it’s hard to decide which route to take first.
- The best way to explore the area is by car – all the main sightseeing spots are close by (within a 30 minutes’ drive).
- Berchtesgaden is an all year round travel destination. Spring, summer, winter or fall, the area offers a great variety of activities no matter which season you are planning to visit.
- Be prepared to bring proper hiking shoes to explore the area.
- For all Sound of Music lovers: this is the area where you will find some original movie sets 🙂
Where to stay? Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden – the perfect location for exploring the area
We came, we saw, we loved it! We’ve been invited from the Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden to stay for a weekend with them and explore the beautiful area in which the hotel is nestled in. The luxury hotel lies 1000m high in the mountains and is in perfect harmony with the surrounding landscape.
Outdoor SPA area
The hotel looks amazing on its website but it is even more amazing when you see it in real. It’s the combination between the five-star luxury and the cozy mountain getaway vibes which make this hotel so unique. The moment you enter the lobby and your room, you immediately feel at home. The Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden is located right in the middle of the Bavarian alps and offers stunning mountain views from various spots and angles of the property – including our beautiful room or the beautiful indoor and outdoor SPA area.
Our Executive Mountain View Room was super spacious and cozy and not only had the most comfortable bed (I’m still obsessed with the cozy pillows!) but a huge bathroom (I love it when a hotel bath room has floor heating!) which leaves nothing to be desired as well.
One of our highlights was the magical sunrise which we could witness while lying in our comfy bed and watching the sun rise between the clouds and mountains.
When it comes to overall service and all the culinary aspects of the hotel, we would give the Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden an additional star. The quality of the food, breakfast and dinner, is exceptional and exceeded all of our expectations!
The breakfast buffet is huge and is full of regional and fresh products. In general we don’t really like to have dinner at the same hotel in which we are staying, as we love to explore different places and try different restaurants. But in case you simply have to stay at the hotel and enjoy its fabulous menu.
And don’t go to bed before you have tried the delicious Kaiserschmarrn – yes, we Austrians are holding the Kaiserschmarrn patent, but the Bavarians know how to cook it as well 🙂
In case you will eat as much as we did 🙂 the hotel offers a huge variety of outdoor activities and a personal activity concierge will help you to set up the perfect itinerary for you. Your choices are almost endless and you can choose between E-mountain bike tours, hiking tours, and many more activities. So let’s have a look how our weekend itinerary looked like:
Friday: arrival at the beautiful Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden
Saturday: secret waterfall at the Königssee, Rossfeld Panorama route
Sunday: boat trip at the Königssee, Obersee and its charming mountain pastures
Finding the secret waterfall of the Königssee
Our first mission was to explore the secret waterfall at the Königssee and as we wanted to have this place all to ourselves, we started our tour pretty early in the morning. We arrived around 8am in the morning at the lake itself and there were only a few people around the lake already.
Here are some fact about the lake itself:
The Königssee is a mountain lake which is nestled in the national park Berchtesgaden. It’s the purest lake in Germany (drinking water quality) and fascinates every visitor with its insane turquoise and blue color. The lake is up to 190 meters deep and the small villages around the lake can only reached by boat.
What to bring:
If you want to jump in the water make sure to bring a swimsuit etc. and a towel
Proper hiking shoes or all terrain sneakers
A backpack to store all your things (you will need your hands for some parts of the hike)
Left: sign ‘Malerwinkl’ at the beginning of the trail. Right: our all terrain sneakers – the first section of the hike is easy and the ground is covered with small gravels.
When you arrive at the parking lot of the lake, head towards the main boat station and follow the small way on the left. You will find a sign saying “Malerwinkl”. Follow this route and after about 15 minutes you will arrive at this viewpoint.
Here you will find a little section where you should take the left way leading you to “Rabenwand”.
Left: section at the ‘Malerwinkl’ viewpoint where you have to follow the left trail leading you to ‘Rabenwand’. Right: the second part of the hike is a bit more off-road with bigger stones on the ground.
After another 20 minutes, the official hiking path will smoothly change into an unofficial (more off-road) path which will directly lead you to the waterfall and its nature pools. For this last off-road path you will need another 20 minutes to reach the waterfall.
Off-road part of the trail
Please read this carefully: depending on the weather situation this last part of the hike can be slippery and wet and you must wear proper hiking shoes. There is no chance you will master this hike in flip flops or sandals. If you are careful and well prepared the hike is not dangerous at all, but as many accidents are happening there because people think it is an easy afternoon stroll, I would like you to be aware and well prepared. We would recommend you to bring some water and if you want to jump into the water, a towel would be useful as well 🙂 Needless to say that you shouldn’t leave any garbage at this beautiful place.
The area around the waterfall and its nature pools is bigger than we excepted, so you will find a separate ‘pool’ right next to the waterfall and the two famous nature pools overlooking the lake are located right at the edge. We were lucky enough to have this place all to ourselves, but we’ve heard insane stories that people had to queue to take their pictures, so you better get there early to have it to yourself as well.
The water of the waterfall is super cold and has only around 10 degrees (Celsius). It took me some time to actually get in the water and I have to admit that it was painfully cold. As it has been raining a lot before we’ve visited the waterfall, the water was too strong to jump in the nature pool at the front – Konrad was too scared and wouldn’t let me in. So please be reasonable as well and only jump in the water when you feel comfortable about it.
For your way back you have two options, and to be honest, I would only recommend you the first one. You can take the same way back or, and I’m repeating myself now because we would not recommend you to do that, you can hike down the waterfall to find some more nature pools. The downhill hike along the waterfall is no official hiking path at all and we had several moments where we weren’t sure where to go next and we didn’t know where we were exactly. Nevertheless we found some more beautiful nature pools with an amazing view overlooking the beautiful Königssee.
If you go down the waterfall (on the right side of the waterfall) you definitely need proper hiking shoes and you will need to hold on to some trees or roots to master the hike. If we would have known how off-road and slippery the path is, we would have taken the same way back at the top of the waterfall. It might be easier during a hot summer day when the ground is not so wet and slippery, but in any case it is definitely a difficult downhill hike. But: you don’t need to do some actual climbing. After arriving at the bottom of the waterfall you have to hike all the way back to the first viewpoint ‘Malerwinkl’. This way will be right next to the shore of the lake and you might get really wet (have a look at our Instagram story highlight ’Berchtesgaden’, you can see that we had to hike through ankle-deep water 🙂 ).
The waterfall at the Königssee was definitely one of our highlights during our stay in Berchtesgaden and I’ve you are visiting the area you should explore this place as well. Just keep in mind to be well prepared 🙂
After our adventurous hike we decided to explore the beautiful Bavarian alps and we got the best surprise from the Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden: a Mercedes AMG GT aka ‘The Beast’ (that’s how Konrad called this car 🙂 ) convertible to cruise around!
Besides the fact that Konrad was having the best time with his new baby, we were mesmerized by the beauty of the area around Berchtesgaden. The Rossfeld panorama route is a must see when you are exploring the area and you will even find some original movie sets of Sound of Music – could it be more idyllic?
Exploring the Königssee, the king among all lakes
You might know us pretty well already, so we started the next day really early as well. We started our morning with a magical boat tour on the Königssee which lead us to the beautiful Obersee. We would recommend you to be among the first ones to take a boat, as taking a boat tour is the most popular thing to do in Berchtesgaden and after 10am people are flooding the place and it might take you more than 1 hour to get on a boat.
The Obersee is not directly connected with the Königssee and can only be reached by boat. Once you arrive at the boat station ‘Salet’ you can easily walk to the Obersee and its famous boat house. There is only one official path, so you can’t miss it and you can wear whatever shoes you want this time 🙂 It’s an easy walk and after about 10 minutes you will arrive at the Obersee and its beautiful mountain views.
The ‘famous’ boat house at the Obersee
We really fell in love with this charming mountain panorama and all the cute mountain pastures and little huts. If you are looking for the picture perfect mountain set-up with lush green grass, picturesque mountains, turquoise lakes and cute cows – this is where you will find it all!
Take a small break at one of the charming ‘Almen’ / huts and have a snack
Of course there are many more things to do and explore in the area of Berchtesgaden: you can take an e-bike to explore the area, do some more hiking, rent a private rowing boat to explore the lake, visit the ‘Jenner’ (mountain) for some amazing views and many more. We didn’t manage to explore everything during our weekend stay, but we will be back soon for sure and will discover all the remaining gems of Berchtesgaden.
I’ve you are planning to visit Berchtesgaden, the beautiful Königssee or the Bavarian alps, the Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden is the perfect location for your stay. I’m 100% sure that you will love this hotel and the destination Berchtesgaden as much as we did and once again, we will be back soon!
Servus and Pfiat di 🙂
If you want to see some more footage about are stay in Berchtesgaden you can have a look at our Instagram story highlight.
*Please note that we’ve been invited from Kempinski Hotel Berchtesgaden to stay at their hotel. All recommendations are based on our personal opinion and experiences.