Highest mountains in Germany
Highest mountains in Germany

The rockier peaks of the mountains are generally located in the southern regions of the country: Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg. And the closer you get to a peak, the more likely you are to run into a spectacular view. Because some of the mountains are so vast, there are cable cars and ski lifts for visitors to reach the highest points without the strain of hiking for a whole day. Hiking is by far the most popular activity, and some people will take weeklong hut-to-hut trips, but mountain biking, skiing, and rock climbing are also widespread activities. A number of the mountains have reservoirs and lakes at higher altitudes. Ettaler Mandl and Frieder are the only two peaks in Germany to have officially classified via ferratas (protected climbing routes).

Germany is famous for its green countryside and mountains. With a high population density and thriving economy, the mountains are a quick refuge for people who live in the cities and an attractive destination for tourists from all over the world. Although Germany’s mountains do not compare in height to the magnificent Alps that soar over a few of its neighbours, they still offer a wealth of outdoor opportunities. Germany and Austria both share a border with the Alps mountain range. The lowest slope of the country runs along Lake Constance, on the north side of the range, but the great 8,000-foot glaciated peak of the Zugspitze lies at the southernmost tip and is wholly within German territory.

Situated in the heart of Europe, Germany, a Federal Republic, shares its borders with nine neighboring countries. Covering a vast area of approximately 138,000 square miles, this country showcases a diverse terrain, which is a common characteristic among nations in this particular region. While Germany is famous for its expansive forests, it also boasts an abundance of magnificent mountains. Today, we embark on a journey to explore the highest peaks in Germany, starting with the nation’s loftiest summit. Germany possesses a wide variety of astounding physical features, including mountains, lowlands, woodlands, rivers, islands, and lakes. The landscape begins at sea level in the northern parts, gradually ascending into towering mountains in the southern regions. Located in the south, the Bavarian Alps play host to Zugspitze, the highest summit in Germany, reaching an impressive elevation of 9,718 feet above sea level. Furthermore, numerous smaller mountain ranges adorn central Germany, particularly bordering the woodlands and the Thuringian Forest. Nestled along the southern border with the Czech Republic, we come across the Ore Mountains, proudly holding the title of Germany’s tallest mountains.

1. Zugspitze – 2,962 meters

Though it is possible to ascend the mountain by foot, it is a dangerous traverse, and the weather on the mountain is known to change abruptly and unpredictably. On the west face is the Zugspitzplatt, a high karst plateau with numerous caves. On the northern face is the Partnach Gorge. The Zugspitze was first summited on 27 August 1820 by Josef Naus, his survey assistant, Maier, and two locals, via the Partnach Gorge and the north face. Today there are three more commonly used paths to reach the summit, these are described below. On 20 December 1923, the Austrian, Fritz Pfeffer, took a small aircraft to the summit. This was the first documented flight landing on the Zugspitze.

In Germany, the Zugspitze is the occupied country’s highest summit. The Zugspitze lies south of the town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen and the Austrian border. The centerpiece of Zugspitzland, a known skiing and mountaineering area, the Zugspitze serves as the conclusion of the Wetterstein mountain range. The border between Germany and Austria runs over the western summit; thus, the Zugspitze is divided into three faces. The Zugspitze is ascended by tourists via the cogwheel train out of Garmisch-Patenkirchen and also by cable car coming from the Tyrolian side.

2. Schneefernerkopf – 2,874 meters

Germany’s Zugspitze arena has historically been a place of innovation in the sport of alpine skiing. The first Bavarian and German slalom race championships were held on the Schneefernerkopf venue in February of 1941. The basic layout of this race is outlined on a map below. The runs were no longer suitable for World Cup competitions; however, they are still used today by the German National ski team for training. Due to poor snow safety, the 1980s saw a move of the training activities to the nearby Garmisch Classic (Hausberg Kreuzeck) and later to Austria. Today, this area is occasionally visited by ski mountaineering racers using climbing skins to reach the summit and ski back down.

The Schneefernerkopf is the highest peak on the southwest ridge of the Zugspitze. This peak is underdeveloped, only reached by hikers or skiers. It is located between Reintal and Hollental, two of the classic Zugspitze ascent routes, so it is possible to reach Schneefernerkopf on skis from the valley. The summit has a stone shelter shaped like a teepee, only big enough for 2-3 people to hide from bad weather. This peak offers excellent skiing with a 1600m vertical descent run to the valley floor. During good snow years, this is the longest ski downhill in Germany. Unfortunately, the Zugspitzebahn construction is threatening the long-term future of this ski run as it relies on the off-trail skiing below the Hollental station. The ski run is threatened by avalanches periodically throughout the winter.

3. Wetterspitze – 2,750 meters

The easiest ascent of the mountain commences at the Austrian W1 classified Birkkarhütte, a long and tiresome walk with slight climbing. A harder approach is from the Leutasch valley, proceeding over the Eppzirler Scharte. At W2, this is more difficult and somewhat dangerous. Any ascent should pose no problem to a competent hiker. Despite this, the mountain is not heavily trafficked. The only other easy route is from Mittenwald up to a col southeast of the summit, and then proceeding along the ridge. This route is off limits due to the mountain lying within Bavarian nature protection, and many do not advocate doing it in respect to this.

Wetterspitze is a peak in the German Alps that stands at 2,754 meters above sea level. It is the 27th highest peak in Germany. The mountain lies on the Austrian-German border, just west of Mittenwald. It is part of a ridge known as the “Innere Wetterspitze” which peaks on the Hochwanner. Wetterspitze at 2,759m is the high point on this ridge. The summit offers excellent views of the Lechtal Alps to the west and the Karwendel range to the east.

4. Hochwanner – 2,744 meters

Hochwanner (also: Hochwannenhorn) is a mountain in the Northern Limestone Alps on the border between Germany and Austria. It is the southernmost fives-thousander of the Northern Limestone Alps. Its summit rises about 25 metres north of the Austrian border. The borderline turns south and runs around 500 metres further west to the summit of the Wannenspitze. It then changes direction and climbs down to the south along the western arête to the Wannersattelte near the Hinteres Tajatörl and on through the Wannkar to the Wannsee on the Reiteralpe where it joins the older German-Austrian border at the conclusion of the Second Margrave War in 1553. Geologically, the mountain is built of Wetterstein limestone and is an enormous tectonic window. For example, the regional building stone consists of Red Wanner Limestone and White Spotted Wanner Limestone. These building materials also contributed to names of some of the rock faces, i.e. Red Ledge etc.

5. Hollentalspitze -2,743 meters

Hollentalspitze (also known as Alpspitze) is located in a branch of the Höllental valley. It is 2,657 metres (8,717 ft) high and part of the Wetterstein Mountain range. The name Hollentalspitze, which means “Hell Valley Peak” in German, is not connected to “hell” in the religious sense, but refers to the word’s original meaning of “narrow and gloomy”. This is a welcoming alternative to the peak’s Latin name of “Alpspitze”. The best known feature of Hollentalspitze is its overhanging step face, which is an ideal sledge run in winter and its climbing track in summer. People interested in adventure sports come here from around the world, especially when attending the Garmisch-Classic winter games. It is also home to one of the most dangerous climbs available to those without extensive climbing background and equipment on a grade two climbing track, again the “Gängen” track. The first recorded ascent of Hollentalspitze was by Austrian army captain, Hermann von Barth, who on the 13th of August, 1870 marked a route leading past the present Höllental route from the Steinscharte, that was free of ice tracks. During the turmoil between Germany and Austria, there was a Christmas tree placed on the peak to signify patriotic ideas, the remains of which were found in 2005 in the ice tracks near the rock face. In 1933 rope ways began to operate on Hollentalspitze which then provided a simpler and quicker access to the mountain, removing much of the peace and quiet. These were removed in 1945. At 72 years old, the Hollentalspitze hut was removed from around 150 metres below the peak in 2002/2003, where it had been used by climbers as a shelter during bad weather or to acclimatise. It now makes way for renovation and new track building on the peak with an expected completion date around 2009. This will leave climbers with the only option of staying the night at the Höllentalangerhütte, a short 2-3 hour track from the peak.

6. Watzmann  – 2,713 meters

The Watzmann is a mountain in the Bavarian Alps, south of the village of Berchtesgaden. It is the third highest mountain in Germany. The Watzmann massif is home to the biggest face in the Eastern Alps. This face is 3 km wide and drops 1800m to the bottom of the face. There are few destinations as exhilarating for alpinists as this face. The best routes are Eisbrenner, an 800m ice and rock climb (up to IV, normal route II), and Kohe couloir, a 700m ice and snow route at an inclination of 50. Through the Third to the Middle Dentine. These routes are not for the faint-hearted, as the massive face is prone to rockfall and avalanche. In the summer, when conditions are drier, the face is an excellent challenge for competent alpine rock climbers. The area around the face and the five main peaks of the Watzmann offer a variety of routes, all of different difficulties. There are several mountain huts where climbers can stay to make ascents of the many routes.

7. Hochblassen -2,703 meters

There are two paths up the mountain to its summit. One starts from the Schalst valley and goes up to the Schachen plateau. The other is more difficult and ascends the Höllental gorge, first to the Höllentalanger hut and then on to the summit. The same path that leads to the summit from Höllentallanger hut also goes over Grießkarsattel, a 2239 m high ridge at the adjoining Grießkar. This second route passes through a tunnel made by miners to facilitate Ludwig II’s passage from his lodge to the fields above, known locally as “Königstal”. This tunnel is used to this day by Hohenzollern section of the German Alpine club, who maintain the route. It is a major route in winter also, with the summit being rewarding with a fine view of the Zugspitze especially in the early part of the summer when the other mountains in the vicinity (Alpspitz, Zugspitz, Waxenstein) are still snow-covered.

Hochblassen is a mountain ridge located in the Wetterstein range in Bavaria, Germany. The summit is 2,701 m (8,862 ft) tall. It is an important mountain for bivouacking and climbing. The French Yardstick grade in climbing scale is D-. The mountain is composed of Wetterstein Limestone. On the east side of Hochblassen lies the ruin of the castle of Schachen, where King Ludwig II built his hunting lodge.

8. Wetterwandeck – 2,698 meters

Route 1 ascends from Wimbachbrücke to Wimbachschloss and follows the path to Watzmannhaus. It then climbs the face of the Watzmann children to the Watzmannkar (the gap between the Irreler and main summits of the Watzmann) using a system of metal ladders and steps to make the climb easier. At the Watzmannkar it forks, with the left hand path leading to the Mauerscharte between the main and south summits of the Watzmann, and the right leading to Watzmannkindern.

Wetterwandneck is one of the two main peaks of the Watzmann massif, the second highest mountain in Germany. Both of Watzmann’s peaks are classed as extreme walks/scrambles. Although the “normal” routes up both peaks do not exceed grade 1, they are very steep and loose in places and require a good head for heights and surefootedness. Route 1, the east face of the Watzmann children, is the easiest route up Wetterwandneck. It is a grade 1 rock climb but is often done in boots in dry conditions.

9. Leutascher Dreitorspitze – 2,682 meters

The Leutascher Dreitorspitze is a mountain in the Karwendel group on the border between Bavaria, Germany and Tyrol, Austria. It has an elevation of 2,372 metres (7,782 ft) and is the highest mountain in the Mieming Chain. Until 1919, the border crossed the summit, therefore the mountain was part of Tyrol. Now the border runs to the north and the mountain is part of Germany. In the west, Leutascher Dreitorspitze is a massive rock face over 400m high. Great care is needed on this face where the Doboijoch, a hidden couloir, climbs to the summit plateau. The easiest route to the summit is from the east. The mountain can be reached from the Reither Spitze or an ascent from Ehrwald in Austria. The mountain lies at the southern end of the Zugspitzplatt, an area of karst fields and high mountain lakes typical of the Northern Limestone Alps.

10. Plattspitze -2,680 meters

Prior to the World Wars, there was more excursion to the mountain. The process was documented well by Ludmilla and Franz Vanassina. People from the continent would come to the High Mountain Hostel in Hochgurgl by train to Obergurgl and then walk to the foot of Geltenbach Benold or that from Lärchenwald Obergurgl or to the base of the mountain from Gurgl. Today, the mountain’s only visitors will be those well accustomed to high mountain scenery, often walking along the west ridge from Glockturm or Kronenjoch. This provides a variety of scrambling for the more hardened visitors.

The normal route for ascending it is the west side, but only experienced alpinists should attempt it. Any ascent from the east is difficult and dangerous. The first ascent, which was for the time a remarkable achievement, was on 8 August 1871 by Alfons and Franz Senn with a young climber from Circumsthurn near Sterzing, a stonemason called Josef Schnelli. With no climbing irons or equipment of any kind, they ascended the north side near the north ridge, today a via ferrata, and then continued the ascent to the summit in heavy mist, taking 17 hours. Luckily, they found shelter at a small crevasse near the entrance to the cirque at around 2,850 m. At the time, everything that happened was a first time. They viewed this ascent as perfectly possible and not too dangerous. The following year, they did the same. The first ascent from the Platt side was not until 25 July 1913 when R. Lang and G. Kiene made an attempt from the Lieben Valley, which ended in failure. Approximately 5,680 times have people topped the summit. Now, the mountain is used as a demonstration of ice climbing and crevasse safety in the mountains to clients on an icetrain and sometimes as an introduction to alpine climbing.

The Plattspitze is a mountain in the Hochgurgl area northeast of Gurgl in Ötztal. With an elevation of 3,305 metres (10,844 ft), it is the highest mountain in the Ötztal Alps and in the municipal area of Obergurgl. Due to its location away from the main Alpine ridge, it provides a grandiose view which includes the whole length of the Ötztal, making it the best viewpoint in the Ötztal Alps. It lies at the north end of Liebener Valley, which runs east to the Ötztal.

How much does it cost to climb Kilimanjaro in Deutsch Mark and Euros?

Here’s the cost breakdown for climbing Kilimanjaro in euros and Deutsche marks based on the provided routes and prices:

Please note that these conversions are based on the exchange rate at the time of calculation and may vary slightly. Additionally, prices may change depending on various factors such as the tour operator, season, and additional services included. It’s always recommended to check with the tour operator for the most up-to-date pricing information.

Can I get a German-speaking guide for Kilimanjaro and also combine a safari?

Yes, Tranquil Kilimanjaro in Tanzania offers services with German-speaking guides for Kilimanjaro climbs and safari tours. When booking your adventure, you can specify your language preference to ensure you have a guide who speaks German fluently.

Combining a Kilimanjaro climb with a safari is a popular option for visitors to Tanzania, allowing you to experience the diverse landscapes and wildlife the country has to offer. Your tour operator can help you plan an itinerary that includes both activities, ensuring a seamless and memorable adventure.

Be sure to communicate your preferences and any special requirements to the tour operator so they can tailor the experience to suit your needs.


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