Last Weekend, I went on a little mini vacation to lake Kochel with my family - a small town around 1h away from Munich by car (75 km). Lake Kochel is located at the foothills of the alps, offers tons of breathtaking nearby hiking options, has an amazing vegetation and is super calm and peaceful (compared to the hectic city centre). Basically the perfect getaway for all hiking friends, 2020 local travelers (thanks to COVID) and people looking for a relaxing and calm weekend out of the city!
We arrived at lake Kochel around noon on Saturday, checked into our hotel, went for a delicious lunch at the Blauer Reiter (see below) and decided to finish off the day with a little exploration tour around lake Kochel. Nothing special but super chill and relaxing! We started at Kochel am See, walked until Schlehdorf and took the ferry back to Kochel from there. Find more info on the trip here and hours of the ferry here.
On Sunday, we definitley got our full body workout done for the day with a hike on top of the Herzogstand mountain! If you want to do the "tightrope walk" - how they call the walk on top of the mountain peaks - I highly recommend to take the cable car up. From "Kochel am See" it takes less than 20 min by car to get to "Walchensee", where the cable car departs. The tickets are exactly 15 EUR for a roundtrip, plus parking 8 EUR I think. Also, make sure to be there early to buy a ticket up. You will not only avoid a long queue at the cable car entrance, but you will also be able to walk much more relaxed up the mountain. The first cable car departs at 9am (at the moment).
The hike: As you can see in my drawings above, the hike doesn't look super chill and it definitely isn't. If you have an injury or you don't feel 100% healthy, I don't recommend you doing the high-intensive "tightrope walk" from between Herzogstand and Heimgarten. But don't worry, there is an alternative, I mention as well.
For the tightrope walk you will need around 2 hours (one way; depending on the traffic on the super tiny route). You start on top of the Fahrenberg and walk up to the Martinskopf first, where the "tightrope walk" to Heimgarten starts. In Heimgarten you can then take a break and recharge at the Heimgarten Hütte or at the Heimgarten summit cross before you start the return trip back to Fahrenberg.
Alternatively to the "tightrope walk", you can walk up the route to the summit cross of the Herzogenstand mountain (green drawing above). The walk isn't difficult at all, the view is breathtaking as well and you won't need more than an hour for the round trip.
Unfortunately, it's super hard to find veggie, plant-based restaurants in the area. The only recommendation I can make is a restaurant called Blauer Reiter right next to the Franz Marc Museum in Kochel am See. We had a wonderful lunch on their terrace and they did their best to serve my brother a fully vegan meal. I went for a vegetable lasagne, which wasn't vegan. Yet, super delicious and loaded with vegetables.
NOTE: My parents, who stayed longer in the area, mentioned that a restaurant called Fischerwirt also offers super tasty meals; vegan and plant-based!
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