In the winter, the Thüringen Forest is a goal for winter sports fans. Hiking trails and cross country loipes wind through this mid-altitude mountain range.
Picturesque cities and regional culinary specialties like roast bratwurst and potato dumplings also beckon.
The climatic spa Oberhof is the best-known winter sports center in the Thüringen Forest. Here, world cups in biathlon, bobsled, and cross country skiing are held. And that draws vacationers and leisure athletes to the slopes, as well. Biathlon courses for amateurs are especially popular.
In the wildly romantic Schwarza Valley, tourists can sign up for courses turning them into expert gold panners.
The funicular railway in Oberweissbach is an engineering marvel built in 1923. With a 25 percent grade, it is the steepest cable railway in the world.
The royal residence city of Meiningen fascinates with its picturesque half-timbered houses, the splendid castle Schloss Elisabethenburg, and a theater with a proud history. Duke Georg II of Saxony-Meiningen instituted theater reforms in the 19th century that inspired theaters all over Europe.
Meiningen – Three Travel Tips
US carmaker General Motors has said it will stop producing vehicles in Australia by 2017. The automotive giant cited the strong Australian dollar as one of the reasons for the pullout, which will cost thousands of jobs.
For yet another month, consumer prices in Europe's biggest economy have risen only moderately. They stayed well below the level that would cause alarm at the European Central Bank, fresh figures showed.
US congressional negotiators have reached a bipartisan budget agreement. The deal would ease the automatic across-the-board spending cuts and help avoid budget clashes for the next year or two.