Triberg – Towering Waterfalls & Black Forest Kitsch

Thrifty Travel Mama | Triberg, Germany - Towering Waterfalls and Black Forest KitschOne thing we haven’t done much of yet is explore the Black Forest (Schwarzwald).  Train connections can be problematic, and our experience driving in Florida is hardly preparation for braving twisty mountain roads.  But, we’re driving to Italy in less than a month, so we need to buck up.  To the forest we go!  Er, went…Thrifty Travel Mama | Triberg, Germany - Towering Waterfalls and Black Forest KitschTriberg is nestled in the thick of the Black Forest, and its claim to fame rests in the waterfalls, touted as “Germany’s highest.”  To be sure, they’re impressive.  But, exactly three minutes prior to writing this post, our good friend Wikipedia informed me that these are actually the second highest in Deutschland.  Doh!

Lies!!

Lies!!  It should say Germany’s highest waterfall that’s easily accessible.

Speaking of lies, I thought about telling you this was the Triberg waterfall since it is water falling in Triberg, but I didn't think you'd fall for it.

Speaking of lies, I thought about telling you this was the Triberg waterfall since it is water falling in Triberg, but I didn’t think you’d be so gullible.

As I put together the graphic for this post, I double-checked the tourist brochure that assured me, “Germany’s highest waterfalls are a splendid spectacle of nature.”   I guess touting them as the second highest doesn’t exactly do wonders for ticket sales.

While we’re talking tickets, adults admission costs 3,50 euro and children under 8 are free.  Entrance includes the use of patchily paved pathways and a printed pamphlet.  Whoop – de – doo.  Oh, right, and you get to see the falsely advertised waterfalls.

The falls from the first platform.

The falls from the first platform.

This is the first platform, seen from above.

This is the first platform, seen from above.

Highest or second highest, I still enjoyed listening to the furious roar of the foaming falls, feeling the wayward water droplets surprise my skin, and gazing out over the thickly forested valley.  False pretenses may have drawn me here, but the scenery was still worth the drive.

The Triberg Waterfalls don’t go straight down.  This might be a downer to some, but actually I appreciated the walkways built at various intervals in the falls that allowed for a unique perspective.  When was the last time you walked over the middle of a waterfall?

A view of the second platform.

Looking at the second platform.

Down, down, down!

Down, down, down!

My boys are usually game for whatever adventures I cook up.  Unfortunately, this week they were exhausted from swimming and skipping naps, and they whined about everything, including the elevation gain.

Looking at the falls from the third platform.

Looking at the falls from the third platform.

The ADAC (like AAA) guide to Hiking with Kids in the Black Forest lists this as an “easy” and “pram-friendly” hike.  Ha!  In terms of length, sure, it wasn’t too bad.  But the path did go straight up for most of the way.  I saw several families with children in strollers; they must be crazy.  It’s much easier to strap a kid on your back than it is to force a buggy straight up the side of a mountain, even if the walkway is paved.

Carry the kiddos if you must; you need to make it to the top!  A fantastic panorama of the dense Black Forest and Triberg valley waits as your reward.

Yeah, buddy, this is what it's all about!

Yeah, buddy, this is what it’s all about!

After you’ve taken it all in, what next?  Follow the signs to explore one of three trails (Cascade, Culture, or Nature) that should take between 45 and 90 minutes to complete.  The most kid-friendly is the red route (Culture).  We explored half of the green route (Nature).  Crazy people with strollers – the red route is the one for you.

Pick a path and follow the signs, distinguished by color.

Pick a path and follow the signs, distinguished by color.

The Culture Trail meanders out to a playground next to a small lake and a beautiful baroque church.  It then runs parallel to the main road in Triberg, parading right past a handful of souvenir shops hawking Black Forest wares including cuckoo clocks for which this area is known.

This is part of the green route - rocks and roots galore so don't even think about taking Graco along.

This is part of the green route – rocks and roots galore so don’t even think about taking Graco along.

We found some wacky stuff on the trails - this tree stump looks like a hand fused to a giant rock.

We found some wacky stuff on the trails – this tree stump looks like a wooden hand fused to a giant rock.

And this tree was literally growing out of a rock!

And this tree was literally growing out of a rock!

My T-Rex is obsessed with climbing.  He didn't even blink when I suggested he climb this boulder.

My T-Rex is obsessed with climbing. He didn’t even blink when I suggested he climb this boulder.

This playground waits at the far end of the red route.

This playground waits at the far end of the red route.

The Schwarzwald Museum, which my friend says is actually fun for kids.  I might have to come back in winter and give it a try.

The Schwarzwald Museum, which my friend says is actually fun for kids. I might have to come back in winter and give it a try.

Continuing on, the main street is completely overrun with tourist traps.  Fill your shopping bag with Dirndls, Lederhosen, Black Forest Bollenhut hats, beer steins, and cuckoo clocks.  Then fill your belly with Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte.  If you’re looking for one town that exemplifies Black Forest kitsch, Triberg is it.

By the way, if you’re super into cuckoo clocks, the world’s biggest one is only a few kilometers outside Triberg.

Hey there, cuckoo clocks.

Hey there, cuckoo clocks.

You can find these funky statues that look like a cross between Easter Island and the Black Forest right near the parking lots across from the falls.

You can find these funky statues that look like a cross between Easter Island and the Black Forest right near the parking lot across from the falls.

Bye, bye, Triberg!

Bye, bye, Triberg!

Though the town was a bit much for me, we really did like the fibbing falls.  In winter, the whole area is frozen.  Since neither Doc Sci nor I have seen a gigantic shards of ice jutting out of mountain rocks, we just might need to make another trip up to the kitschy capital of the Black Forest.

What do you think – should we return when the falls are frozen?  Would you pay to see the waterfalls even though they’re falsely advertised?   Signature-Marigold

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “Triberg – Towering Waterfalls & Black Forest Kitsch

  1. We enjoyed the meandering path at the falls as well, and there are these incredibly long swings at the playground at the bottom of the falls, just across from the museum, that the kids loved.

    • Sounds like that playground is better than the one at the far end of the town. We should’ve visited there instead! We thought it was part of the ropes course. We’ll have to go back in winter and check that out. Thanks for the tip 🙂

  2. Pingback: Hornberg – Castle Ruins For Kids | Thrifty Travel Mama

  3. Pingback: Hiking with Kids: The Ravennaschulucht | Thrifty Travel Mama

  4. Pingback: Berchtesgaden With Kids: Lake Königssee | Thrifty Travel Mama

We want to hear from you! Share your thoughts here.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s