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Anyone visiting Triberg is welcomed by a large cuckoo-clock, and lots of shops selling cuckoo-clocks. Of course, these clocks can be found all over the Black Forest, but here there is probably the greatest concentration of firms making these hand-carved beauties. The Black Forest has been producing and selling cuckoo-clocks for more than 250 years, with growing success worldwide.
This was one of my favourite day trips with our children; the drive alone was a joy with its unspoiled natural beauty, winding roads and thick wooded hills. Once in Triberg, there’s plenty to do, lots of shopping, Black Forest Museum, eating at some amazing restaurants and hiking up the highest waterfall in Germany.
Our kids loved this waterfall. Once we parked, it was first on the agenda and the entrance was just a few minutes from the town centre. We would hike up the long, beautiful trail through the forest by the steady noise of rushing water and feed squirrels along the way. There are pamphlets about these squirrels and you can actually buy nuts for them as you enter the trail, they are everywhere.
Here the Gutach River cascades down from the flowing Weissenbach and Schwarzenbach, over a total of 7 waterfalls and a drop of 524 feet. These falls are known throughout Europe for the easiest public access of a waterfall, along with a magnificent display of nature.
A wonderful time to see this waterfall is when the snow melts or after a heavy rainfall, as the water comes down dramatically and with great force. A magnificent thing to witness!
(FYI) The three marked trails are: “Naturweg”, the “Kulturweg”, or “Kaskadenweg”. The falls are illuminated at night until about 10pm and offer a beautiful and spectacular sight.
After our very long hike, it’s time to eat lunch which was always at a restaurant that sits at the foot of the falls. It has the most amazing German food and of course we’d always finish off with the famous Black Forest Gâteau.
Our favourite restaurant:
Recipe for Black Forest Gâteau:
With a full stomach, it’s time to browse through all the souvenir and gift shops, including the 1000 clock house and other numerous places that sell cuckoo clocks and grandfather clocks. It’s truly an amazing experience; our kids never got bored shopping here.
Living on the edge of the Black Forest, it should come to no surprise that I was determined to buy a grandfather and cuckoo clock before our time in Germany was over. We had so much fun choosing the design of our grandfather clock. You literally choose everything you want, the type of wood, the body, the pendulum, the weights, the face, it was an amazing experience.
We chose the Neuschwanstein Castle for our pendulum because that castle has so many family memories. The face has different landmarks of Europe like Eiffel Tower and Tower Bridge etc.
It took about 3 months for them to put it together and they delivered it to our home. It was a birthday I shall never forget!
As far as the cuckoo clock goes, it was our last Christmas in Germany and I still had to shop for one. This is what we bought and our grandchildren love watching the cuckoo come out, the bell ringing, the little dancers twirling, the man chopping wood and the water mill turning. Just watching their faces, precious memories indeed!
Triberg is located directly on the Black Forest railway line. Scenic trip is from Freiburg. From Baden-Baden the trains are hourly and it takes 1.5 hours.
More about the Black Forest and its railway line: