[GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, GERMANY] — I was posting photos from a hike in the Bavarian Alps and an Instagram follower I’ve never communicated with posted “You should go hike around lake Eibsee, the most beautiful lakes around.”  And so I did and he was right.

Just outside the town of Garmisch in Bavaria is this most perfect mountain lake. The Eibsee, with Germany’s highest mountain, the Zugspitze towering over it.

You can walk around in the perfect Red Riding Hood like moss-bedecked trail that loops around it, take a dip or just sit and soak it all in. Then follow up with a brat, red cabbage and a beer at one of the lakeside restaurants.  There’ an easy, flat loop trail that leads from the nicely-run parking lot on the edge of the lake.

Eibsee islands in lake
Eibsee lake Bavaria
Nothing better than a sparkling lake surrounded by towering mountains. You can rent paddleboats or canoes, or take the small ferry. Those utility-looking lines are for the cable car to the top of the Zugspitze.

You really need to watch this short video to get a feel for how cool this place is:

The trail is easy and popular. On one end of the lake it is pretty commercial, with lots of restaurants, but the trail loops ’round the lake and thru a quiet nature park. You can take a swim or just sit and watch others.  There’s not a lot to write about, just look at the pictures, then go and do it.

Eibsee lake view
A definite must is to drive past Garmisch and the Zugspitze and hike around the incredible lake Eibsee. That’s a perfect half day hike. I’ll have another post on that.

The emerald gem of green waters are almost Caribbean in their color and clarity. Small inlets provide little stunning moments. A dog or person gliding across the glassy lake top, a SUP paddler heading off into the shadows from the mountains.  You can take a little old timey ferry across the lake, but the trail is so flat and easy, there’s no need to… although being out on the water is always a good idea.  You can also rent paddleboats.

Eibsee pond reflection
Just incredible, the pictures don’t do it justice.
Eibsee SUP
Eibsee mountain view
Eibsee reflecting pool
Eibsee location on map
The Eibsee is nestled under the glaring stare of the Zugspitze — Germany’s tallest mountain. You can take a cable car up to the top, but I read the crowds are pretty intense, like the views.

More Information on Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Here’s a great article from the NYTimes on stuff to do in Garmisch. A list of stuff to do in Garmisch from TripAdvisor. A great article that features this lake and many other things from Culture Trip. And some great pictures and lists from Planet D’s website.

And here’s a previous post on where to stay outside of Garmisch, in the stunning looking Schloss Elmau hotel.

— Last Visited July 2019 —


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