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A Magical Mountain in Thuringia | Kickelhahn

Hello folks!

Despite many times visiting Thuringia, the "Green Heart of Germany", this was finally the first time that I visited the Kickelhahn, in the municipal area of Ilmenau. This mountain is one of the highest peaks of the Thuringian Forest and attracts tourists not only for its beautiful and enchanted forest, but also for its importance to German literature. 

”I always loved being here, I believe it comes from the harmony of everything around here …”
(Goethe to Schiller, Ilmenau, August 29th,1795) 

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the master of German literature, escaped to Ilmenau no fewer than 28 times. The idyllic forest and landscapes served as inspiration for many of his poems, as the Wanderer's Nightsong, which he wrote on the wall of the hunters' cabin next to the mountain's summit. Although more than two centuries have passed, I could feel that the harmony mentioned by Goethe is still very much present on the Kickelhahn. 

It was a very sunny day in July when Christian and I decided to hike the mountain, in a very spontaneous way, without hiking clothes or appropriated shoes, yet with a lot of energy. The Kickelhahn is 861 meters high and there is a 24 m tall look-out tower in the top of the mountain. There are several options for hiking routes and we chose the longer version, as we had plenty of time. We walked several hours and I lost the notion of time, which is very likely to happen as the place looks like a fairy tale, the aroma and the colours of the forest are hypnotising and my mind was drawn in a special synaesthetic experience. During the hike, I was collecting plenty of wild raspberries. There were some parts of the trail that we've been literally walking over raspberries and little strawberries, it was magical.

Arriving on the top of the Kickelhahn we visited the ruins of an old hunting lodge, the little wood cabin where Goethe wrote the Wanderer's Nightsong and we climbed the observation tower, which was built in 1869 by Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach. I have to admit that I was very tired and already enjoying the glorious view over the valleys from one of the lookout spots, but I'm happy that my husband encouraged me to climb the tower because the view from there was breathtakingly beautiful.

Following the footsteps of Goethe on the Kickelhahn was one of the most magnificent experiences of my life and I hope I can do this again in December to see the mountain covered with snow.

For more information visit the

forest of ilmenau thuringia

forest of ilmenau thuringia

forest of ilmenau thuringia

forest of ilmenau thuringia

forest of ilmenau thuringia

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