For Germans, for Europeans, for everyone. That doesn’t mean the place is going to be a crowded nightmare, but a little forward planning will increase your enjoyment significantly. Try to avoid going in the last two weeks of July or all of August or any of the German school holidays in whatever season.
We all know what it looks like. And it’s funny. The first bit even means the same in modern German, though for the record, it’s pronounced Titty ZAY. The second word, see (zay) means lake. There is some discrepancy about the meaning of the first part, but the two best theories are that Teti means little child or baby in the Alemmanic dialect or that the Roman general Titus camped near the lake, which he loved so much he named it after himself.
With so much to do in every season – skiing, swimming, boating, climbing, waterslides, tobaganning – the Titisee is the ideal place to have a relaxing holiday with children. Most of the hotels in the area have either dedicated family rooms or cots and rollaway beds to add to regular rooms, not to mention all the Ferienwohnungen or holiday apartments stuffed full of bunk beds.
Action Forest Kletterwald
With two practice courses, six different climbing courses and two zip lines, Action Forest Kletterwald gives kids of all ages and adults alike the chance to test their sense of adventure up to 21m above the forest floor. Participants must be at least 1.60m to do the three most difficult courses, but the zip lines and other course are child-friendly.
Neustädter Str. 41, Titisee-Neutstadt, Germany +49
Baden Paradies Schwarzwald
Especially delightful in winter, the indoor waterpark at Baden Paradies Schwarzwald promises tropical temperatures, turquoise water and 22 water slides. Exotic cocktails under 300 palm trees for adults and loads of water and waves for kids – there’s something for everyone in the family. The Kids’ Galaxy is especially great for children under 10.
Am Badeparadies 1, 79822 Titisee-Neustadt +49 800 0444 4333
If Basel or Strasbourg were on your list of things to see, then the Titisee is very conveniently located to be the next stop on the tour. If these places are not, they should be, Strasbourg particularly, which is just 2 hours away by train. Basel is 90 minutes away and is a good place to dip a toe into Switzerland without going immediately bankrupt.
The reason the lake is such a magical colour is that it was formed by the Feldberg glacier in the Pleistocene era when the area was home to sabre-toothed tigers, giant sloths, woolly mammoths and mastodons. When the glacier moved on, one of scars it left was the Titisee.
The area around the Titisee is ground zero cuckoo clock making. There are plenty of workshops to tour and wood carvers to admire, but do what you can to avoid taking one home. Take it from us – they are fragile, awkward to carry, insanely expensive and annoying once you get them home.
It is possible to get to the Titisee on the train, there is a station right near the lake. If you’re coming from Cologne or Munich, count on a 5.5 hour journey. From Berlin it’s closer to 8. By car, the very thing that makes the Black Forest so magical – narrow country roads – is what can make it a nightmare to get to, particularly during busy holiday times.
Every tourist brochure says so, it’s true, but there’s something about the combination of pure, glacial waters, the most sunshine hours of any place in Germany and the backdrop of one of those most mystical forests in the country that make the Titisee and its surrounds different to anywhere else. Plus, it’s really fun to say.