Cities near forest or mountains

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Right now we're researching parts of Germany and cities we might want to live in. I'm looking for recommendations for cities that are in a forest area, near a forest area (within 30 minutes), or in/near mountains with a population between say 70,000 and 500,000. I've found a couple but I'm curious what places other people recommend. Population could be slightly smaller or larger, but I prefer to be in a place that isn't super small. 

 

Thanks!!!

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 Wikipedia shows about 30% of Germany's land is forest. So one should be able to find one near most of the German city. For mountains one should look in the south. Freiburg is near forest and mountain with decent population. 

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I lived in Bayreuth, the name suggests that it is surrounded by forest (reuth is basically an old word for cut part of forest to build a settlement), in particular by nature parks Fichtelgebirge, Franconian Switzerland and Frankenwald. There is a small ski resort nearby (not like in the Alps, but also cheaper). 

 

 

 

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I can highly recommend Freiburg im Breisgau. I don't live there myself, but I know the city very well. It is 

a very lively city of around 240000 with loads of cultural events and a beautiful cathedral. You can walk 

from the city centre to the hills of the Black Forest or ride your bike to the Rhine and the French border

(about 15 km, I've done it several times) or take the train to the Swiss city of Basel (about 35 min.).

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What about Rosenheim ( 63.551 peps), close to the Alps, forest and lakes - you can get on a direct line to Munich if you find it a big small

 

Property can be expensive thou to buy and rent, do you have some kinda budget in mind ?

Or 

Kempten (Allgäu)  again the same as Rosenheim

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I second Freiburg. Better climate and people so much less gruff than the average Bavarian.

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2 hours ago, optimista said:

I second Freiburg. Better climate and people so much less gruff than the average Bavarian.

 

Can I ask about what "better climate" means to you? I hate hot weather (over 80 or 85 degrees F) and definitely prefer a cooler climate. Though I know temps in the 80s are not entirely unavoidable. But if such a place exists where those temps are less common, I'm all for it!

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2 hours ago, yesterday said:

What about Rosenheim ( 63.551 peps), close to the Alps, forest and lakes - you can get on a direct line to Munich if you find it a big small

 

Property can be expensive thou to buy and rent, do you have some kinda budget in mind ?

Or 

Kempten (Allgäu)  again the same as Rosenheim

 

Thanks! I will look it up. It sounds beautiful!

 

Budget will depend on a few circumstances so right budget isn't a factor. Once I have that sorted out and a list of a handful of places I will look into that part.

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Don't overlook the Harz area. Weather this year hotest day a little over 80 most 70s. Not humid. My wife and i just were talking about how perect the climate is here. You dont mention if you are needing to work or not. 1000s of km of hiking and biking trails as well as cross country skiing..but snow this season was only a couple weeks total so winter is mild. Goslar is a unesco city medival with many beutiful post and beam houses pop over 100k. Or gottingen is a college town. It is north near hannover _braunschweig, which are also 30 min to the harz park. Mountins more like smokeys highest peak is brocken at around 3000ft ...there is a daily steam train, that runs through the area from the small villages. Yourhousing dollar would go much further here than areas in Bavaria. Something else to consider. Keep in mind you will find forests almost anywhere in germany there are many forested areas that ring berlin even.

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3 hours ago, lunasuenos said:

Don't overlook the Harz area. Weather this year hotest day a little over 80 most 70s. Not humid. My wife and i just were talking about how perect the climate is here. You dont mention if you are needing to work or not. 1000s of km of hiking and biking trails as well as cross country skiing..but snow this season was only a couple weeks total so winter is mild. Goslar is a unesco city medival with many beutiful post and beam houses pop over 100k. Or gottingen is a college town. It is north near hannover _braunschweig, which are also 30 min to the harz park. Mountins more like smokeys highest peak is brocken at around 3000ft ...there is a daily steam train, that runs through the area from the small villages. Yourhousing dollar would go much further here than areas in Bavaria. Something else to consider. Keep in mind you will find forests almost anywhere in germany there are many forested areas that ring berlin even.

 

I REALLY want to go to the Harz area! Your comment is so helpful! I appreciate the town suggestions. That is so helpful. The area sounds like a dream to me. 

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It's hard to go  half an hour out of any city centre without tripping up over a forest! 

Mountains a bit sparse on the north German plain though but therefore great for cycling. Lakes and rivers in abundance too.

Not far out of Dresden are the mountains of the Sächsige Schweiz and the Erzgebirge.

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1 hour ago, Feierabend said:

It's hard to go  half an hour out of any city centre without tripping up over a forest! 

Mountains a bit sparse on the north German plain though but therefore great for cycling. Lakes and rivers in abundance too.

Not far out of Dresden are the mountains of the Sächsige Schweiz and the Erzgebirge.

 

Thank you for the suggestions! 

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10 hours ago, yesterday said:

What about Rosenheim ( 63.551 peps), close to the Alps, forest and lakes - you can get on a direct line to Munich if you find it a bit small.

I lived in Rosenheim from 1971 - 1982, and I loved it. The town is small enough to walk across, the area around it is pretty flat and lends itself to cycling. It's a beautiful locale, at the foothills of the Alps. Google 'living in rosenheim germany' for current information.

Salzburg, Munich, and Innsbruck are an hour away, the Italian border is two hours away, and Venice is five hours away - Rosenheim is at the crossroads of Central Europe.

 

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How about Pirna in Saxony?  It's very close to National Park Saechsische Schweiz -- which is also a national park on the Czech side of the border.  Plus, it's got S-Bahn to downtown Dresden.  Dresden, as recently as mid-March had several flights a day to Munich, Frankfurt, and Duesseldorf for international connections, as well as direct flights to London, Moscow, and Zurich.  But you probably need to be self employed.  And if you don't like the AfD or NPD, try not to talk politics with too many of the locals.

 

 

Pirna 1.jpg

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Hello mlynn if you have any questions Just pm me we have been to almost every town and city within 80km of the harz from the towns with 3 buildings to the bigger cities, so can give you some inputs if needed. We live in a small town at 1800 feet elevation and drive to the big city if needed so the reverse of your plan. The big surprise is our little town grocery is even open a few hours on sunday! And town dr open saturday and sunday. People here are very friendly in general

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15 minutes ago, lunasuenos said:

towns with 3 buildings

These would probably be of no interest as they are too small, are not towns and probably classed as hamlets.

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I live in Dusseldorf. Population 630,000 - but very compact, on the Rhine, with lots of parks and outdoor swimming pools.

 

I've been going out with a walking group for about 17 years. You'd be surprised how much woodland there is around Wuppertal and Solingen. There are places where you can stand and just gaze upon an ocean of trees. Sometimes, I think of Canada (not that I've ever been there). The same with the Solinger Klingenpfad - long stretches of it are through woodlands. 

 

https://www.google.com/search?q=wuppertaler+wald&tbm=isch&ved=2ahUKEwj8sfTul_PqAhXCwKQKHXAuCQAQ2-cCegQIABAA&oq=wuppertaler+wald&gs_lcp=CgNpbWcQAzoFCAAQsQM6AggAOgQIABAeOgYIABAIEB5QoKsBWJ7BAWCSwwFoAHAAeACAAYABiAGWCZIBBDE0LjKYAQCgAQGqAQtnd3Mtd2l6LWltZ8ABAQ&sclient=img&ei=tcwhX7yDIcKBkwXw3CQ&bih=488&biw=868&rlz=1C1WZPI_enDE457DE684&safe=active

 

Oh, and another good thing about D'dorf is that the airport is just 12 km from the main station in the centre of town and you can get there by train or bus. (Coming from North Wales and having to drive for a good while to get to an airport - I see this as a luxury.)

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It's just hills here in bergisches land, nothing high to be called a mountain .  But I agree that the hilly forests are awesome. 

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