Today I want to present you the Lüneburg Heath region in the northeastern part of the state of Lower Saxony in northern Germany. It is south from Hamburg and was named after the town of Lüneburg.
Most of the area is a nature reserve with a large area of heath, geest and woodland. It is a popular holiday and day tour destination. The flat region has great cycling routes but also hiking trails for exploring the area. From the heath’s highest hill, the Wilseder Berg (169 metres/555 feet) you have a great panorama view of the surrounding area.
Originally it was formed by prehistoric farmers to leave open heathland for farming areas (they fell almost all trees). Overgrazing led to such a landscape. The heathland was typical for the countryside of Northern Germany until about 1800. Afterwards, nature fetched back it´s natural habitat, trees and bushes started to grow again.
But, because the Lüneburg Heath is a historic cultural landscape nowadays, it was wanted that the remaining areas should be kept like centuries ago. Therefore, the heath is kept clear mainly through grazing. Especially by a North German breed of moorland sheep, called the Heidschnucke. Their part is to prevent the return of trees.
The best time to visit the heathland is between August and late September. The area is covered by purple heather in bloom and bees are collecting honey. Also worth to visit is the Heath Garden (near the city center of Schneverdingen). Gardeners planted over 150,000 plants in this garden with around 180 different kind of heather species.
Why I like it?
Wonderful colour mixture with purple and green really made it a great place to visit. Also the varied hiking trails made the day trip a special experience. I liked the “Heidschnucken” sheep – really cute. Oh, and it´s totally free, even most of the parking spots.
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