6 reasons you absolutely need to visit Baden Baden in Germany
Baden Baden is a beautiful spa town located at the foot of the Black Forest mountains in South Germany, not very far away from Germany's border to France. It is famous for its curative waters and healing baths and has attracted the likes of Queen Victoria, Barrack Obama and many more celebrities over the years. I spent a few days there recently and totally fell in love with the place! Here is why I think you absolutely need to make a visit to Baden Baden!
1. Charming and surreal in beauty
With it's grand colonnaded buildings and elegant villas framed by picturesque Black Forest mountains, Baden Baden is charming and surreal in beauty. There is an air of old style luxury that you can almost instantly feel and perceive everywhere and it seems to me a town where kings and noblemen once lived.
2. Healing water baths
One of the most important reasons why Baden Baden is famous is because of its healing water baths. While there are many old styled traditional baths you can go to, I visited the newly built Caracalla Therme (bath) on the recommendation of a friend. It is truly one of the most beautiful and cleanest baths I have ever visited. The interiors are done up in blue and white and there are many different pools with healing waters and also a waterfall. Nobody swims and people just stand submerged in the waters taking in all the healing effects of the curative waters. The floor is marble and you have to be barefoot-no slippers allowed, which is also perhaps one of the reasons why it is so clean!
Tip: Most hotels in Baden Baden will give you a card so you can get some special discounts at the bath. My recommendation would be to take the €49 package which includes a back massage, a free health drink and use of the spa facilities for the whole day.
3. Lichtentaler Allee and the Oos river
The Lichtentaler Allee is the breathtakingly beautiful historic park set out as a strolling avenue 2.3 kms long, alongside the west bank of the river Oos. The joy and upliftment of spirit one feels while walking in this park along the Oos river is indescribable. If you don't enjoy walking, you can sit at one of the various benches that are provided there and take in the beauty of the place. Otherwise you can also visit one of the various hotels or cafes located right on the banks of the river for a very delightful coffee in nature.
4. Good food, gelato and shopping
From seafood pasta to mouth-watering gelatos and high-fashion shopping, there is much in this little town to indulge your senses in! Cafe König is a must for a coffee and cake. For the rest, remember to carry your passport when you go out shopping so you can get a tax-refund for your loot! I love tax refunds as they take some of the guilt away from buying expensive things!
Besides a walk in the park, you might also want to enjoy a ride in a horse carriage! There are also beautiful museums, a theater and a casino to choose from. You may also want to sit in the peaceful vibrations of the beautiful cathedral in the city center or visit the Russian church.
6. Treating yourself to luxury with a nice hotel stay
While the Brenners Park-Hotel and Spa is the best hotel to stay in, it is also the most expensive. The room rates are anything between €275-€1,000 per night and the hotel has a private park for its guests along the Oos river. I am a great fan of the Steigenberger group of hotels but unfortunately the Steigenberger hotel was under renovation at the time I visited.
I stayed at the 4 star Leonardo Royal hotel, only 0.6 km away from the Lichtentaler Allee and spend about €400 for a single room with breakfast for three nights. Even though it was a comfortable hotel and more economical than the others, next time I would really like to stay at a hotel right on the Oos river like the Atlantic Park Hotel, also much closer to the center of town.