In Bavaria, people are creative. They make pottery, craft works of art from glass, mix up the fashion world or refine fruits, herbs and nuts into high-proof spirits. Most of the ideas have their roots in Bavarian traditions. The creative minds told us where they find new inspiration in their favorite places in their homeland..

Hiking and pottery with alpine feeling

Lush Alps, lonely moorlands, clear mountain lakes and picturesque little towns - the Allgäu/Bavarian Swabia region in southwesternmost Bavaria offers all of this. A region that expresses itself in what Sophie Mische calls "s'Alpgfihl," the Alpine feeling. This is also what the 22-year-old potter has named her business. The workshop and salesroom are located in a 300-year-old former barn, where the wooden floors creak. There she lovingly handcrafts tableware such as cups, cereal bowls and teapots, and even lamps made of ceramics.

What goes into her pottery art is the Alpine feeling she collects on her hikes. "I like to go hiking in the mountains," she says. "The Rubihorn is my favorite mountain. It's just under three hours to the summit. On the way, I often see the most beautiful mountain flowers. And from the top, there's a great view of the whole Allgäu. Further down is the Gaisalpsee. The water is freezing cold, but the landscape is great." 

After her mountain hikes, Sophie naturally needs some real Bavarian refreshment. She likes to stop at the Landhotel Alphorn in Ofterschwang, where they serve traditional dishes with a modern twist. "From Ofterschwang, you can also walk up to the Wurzelhütte in fifteen minutes. There, every dish is truly homemade. And the view is just beautiful."

If you want to learn more about Sophie Mische, just click here.

This is how you get to the Rubihorn by train: Plan arrival.

Fragile and natural beauties

Eastern Bavaria is a very special vacation world: quiet rural landscapes, the endless green forest landscapes of the Bavarian Forest, a lot of real tradition and a very special art: the glass craft. Glass has been made in eastern Bavaria for 700 years. Young Magdalena Paukner has also chosen the profession of glassmaker. She continues the old tradition and at the same time breathes new life into it. Inspired by the nature of her homeland around the glass city of Zwiesel, Magdalena creates glass at the Bunsen burner in berry, leaf and flower shapes for imaginative pieces of jewelry. And in her hand-blown vases and carafes, the fine structure of moss or beetles shines through the large kiln. 

Magdalena finds inspiration on her hikes through nature near Zwiesel and Lindberg. "The Große Schachtenwanderung and Kleine Schachtenwanderung are particularly beautiful. Schachten are extensive high-altitude areas that look like alpine pastures. There are high moors and felts there. These hikes connect the different Schachten; you dive deep into the wilderness and can enjoy the great peace there. I do the tour at least once a year." She also has tips for museum lovers: "Visit the Bavarian Forest National Park with the visitor center Haus zur Wildnis at the Falkenstein and the animal enclosure. I also recommend the glass gardens of Frauenau with the glass museum. Works of art by me are also exhibited here. In the farmhouse museum in Lindberg you can also experience how people used to live here." Learn more about Magdalena here.

This is how you get to Zwiesel by train: Plan arrival.

Franziska burns for noble drops and for nature

High in the north of Bavaria, pretty much on the border between the Rhön and Spessart hills, lies the community of Wartmannsroth in Franconia. Whether it's whiskey aged in oak barrels, fruit brandies made from fruits harvested by the community itself, or gin that smells of meadow herbs: In Wartmannsroth, people are distilling for all they're worth. The place of enjoyment is considered the "cradle of Rhön whisky". Even before the distillate became established throughout Germany, the traditional grain brandy Rhöndiesel was refined into Rhön whisky here. One who has devoted herself entirely to the distillery is Franziska Bischof. Her parents distilled for pleasure; she made a profession out of it. The young Franconian is a state-certified distiller and sommelier for fine spirits who distills the finest high-proof spirits from fruits, nuts and herbs. At tastings in her "Distillathek" you can stick your nose deep into ginger, rowanberry or quince brandy and inhale the scent of the traditional distilling culture. 

When Franziska isn't harvesting fruit or preparing the new mash, she likes to be out and about in nature: "Because of the many distilleries, we've had the Distillers' Trail for a few years now," she says. "It's a network of circular trails with five different loops: the Whisky Loop, the Wild Fruit Trail, the Scattered Fruit Trail, the Korn-Brand Tour and the Forest Fire Extra Tour. The routes are each five to twelve kilometers long, and along the way you will find information boards with interesting facts and anecdotes about the spirits and their production. The distilleries are happy to welcome visitors, you should just register in advance." And if Franziska wants to stop in herself? "I like the Zum Landgraf restaurant and hotel around the corner from us. I also like to eat at Weinhotel Müller in Hammelburg and Gasthof Nöth in Morlesau. These are all family businesses that cook with fresh, regional ingredients. In Bad Kissingen, there are also star restaurants like Laudensack's Parkhotel or the Dorint Bad Brückenau, which offers very good regional cuisine." Read more about Franziska's philosophy here.

This is how you get to Wartmannsroth by train and bus: Plan arrival.

Bavarian is forest green - and candy colored

A velvety top to the curved skirt, plus a silk sash. All this in warm candy colors. This is how Barbara Stadler from the label "Diese Ellie" imagines the contemporary Bavarian ladies' outfit. Bags, jackets and jewelry are also part of the collection. Where does Barbara sell them? In the family-owned "Gasthaus zum Kirchenwirt" in the Upper Bavarian town of Anzing, east of Munich. That's where Barbara grew up, that's where she is at home. Guests at the rustic inn, which the Stadler family has run since 1930, also often store at Barbara's store. Because while Barbara serves the house specialty ox cheeks with celery puree and natural carrots, she wears her own creations - and thus casually whets the appetite for her modern traditional costume fashion. By the way, she has furnished her salesroom with a lot of charm in the former butcher's shop of the inn.

When she's not tending to the inn, her store or online sales, Barbara Stadler likes to hike up the nearby Neufarner Berg. "The hill is not particularly high, but you have a wonderful view of Anzing from there," she enthuses. The designer also makes use of the vast wooded areas around Anzing for her free time. "I like to go on bike tours in the beautiful Ebersberg Forest, for example. And for art lovers, the Loher House in Anzing is an insider tip; interesting exhibitions are regularly organized there." Barbara also enjoys going to the nearby Munich. Your tip for visitors. "A raft trip on the Isar from Wolfratshausen to Munich is great. It's really something everyone should do." More tips from Barbara here.

How to get to Anzing by train and bus: Plan arrival.

Cover image: Barbara Stadler prefers to ride her bike around Anzing © Krautbauer

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