Germany is a country of great cities strewn with dynamic architecture and bewitching scenery, peppered with charming half-timbered towns. Its capital, Berlin, is defined by innovation, eco-friendliness and natural beauty. Ascend the glass dome of Reichstag for sweeping views of the city. You’ll spot futuristic buildings like Bahn Tower sitting alongside war-surviving monuments like the iconic Brandenburg Gate – a centrepiece that now symbolises the reunification of Germany after the infamous wall was knocked down. Explore this history-steeped city on foot, or hire a bike and enjoy the many cycling paths that run through pristine parks and along the River Spree. In the south, Munich is known for its distinctly Bavarian heritage. Head to Marienplatz to feel the pulse of the city. Here, lively beer gardens like Hofbräuhaus sit beneath imposing medieval architecture, serving traditional German lager and plates piled high with bratwurst. Meanwhile, the likes of Hamburg and Cologne provide plenty more in the way of classical music, fine art and urban appeal. In between all this, you’ll find a vast, sprawling land of alpine terrain and ancient, mythical forests. Hike through hills and valleys in the legendary Black Forest, paddle past hillside castles in the Rhine, or find peace in a quiet town on the banks of Lake Constance. Accommodation options are ample through Germany. Expect luxury hotels, chic apartments and hip hostels in the big cities, and gorgeous log cabins in the countryside.
The 12 best places to stay in Germany: Top hotels, B&Bs, inns, and vacation rentals — Based on real reviews from real guests