Bavaria is a stunning region in southeastern Germany. Riddled with high altitude meadows, rugged mountain peaks, and stunning lakes, it is every adventure lover’s dream. Whether you want to spend the weekend camping and having BBQs with friends, or taking on the most challenging hikes on the map, you’ll find your ideal lakeside holiday in Bavaria.
Another great thing about the region is the amount of water sports you can try. Bring your fishing rod and try catching dinner (bear in mind you’ll probably need to pay a small fee for a fishing permit!), kayak to the furthest point of the lake, or test your body with some cold water swimming.
The Best Lakes in Bavaria
Grand and majestic, Lake Eibsee is one of those places that is completely mesmerising. The lake itself is still and calm, contrasting beautifully with the steep forests and rough, rocky mountains around it.
The emerald waters are so enchanting that in 1884 it was bought by Augustus Terne for ten thousand marks at auction. He turned it into a luxury resort, which locals laughed at as at the time it was nearly impossible to reach the remote lake at the base of Germany’s tallest mountain, Zugspitze. It’s still privately owned today, but it’s open to visitors.
His resort started out as a humble alpine lodge and it is still running today, though it’s now the 4 star Eibsee Hotel! It’s so famous that even the Dalai Lama has visited, and he left a little note in the guestbook.
There’s a gorgeous hike that loops around the lake that you can’t miss, and you can get to Eibsee via public transport from Munich (it’s a short train ride then a quick bus ride away from the city).
Vast and turquoise blue, the Walchensee Lake is nestled between two mountains, Herzogstand and Heimgarten, in the Bavarian Alps. Not surprisingly, one of the most popular activities is hiking up Herzogstand, the views from the top are enough to make the walk worth it – you can see Lake Walchensee in all its glory and there are views of Lake Kochelsee too!
Another super cool thing you can do at Lake Walchensee is cycle the 25 km route around the lake. You can come to Walchensee on a day trip from Munich, but if you’ve got a few days to spare I recommend coming and camping here for the weekend.
Alpsee is another of the idyllic little lakes that surrounds the Hohenschwangau Castle. You can spot the lake from high above as you tour the castle, then wander down and get acquainted with the white swans that call Alpsee home.
There are other castles around Alspee too, like the famous Neuschwanstein castle. Set in a deep gorge with snow-capped mountains in the distance, the scenic views from the lakeside look like they’re out of an oil painting.
The waters are emerald green and enticing, but if you don’t fancy a swim you can rent a paddle boat or hike along the trails that loop around the lake.
This spectacular lake is at the foothills of jagged mountains in the Berchtesgaden National Park in southeastern Bavaria. It’s like something out of a fairy tale, surrounded by breathtaking, picture perfect views, and boasting crystal clear waters that entice you in for a swim (it’s the cleanest lake in Europe!). Curiously, the name Konigssee actually translates to King’s Lake.
Be sure not to miss the beautiful Ice Chapel which you can hike up to from the lake, and if you’ve got time, visit the Jennerbahn Viewpoint, too. Did you know you can hike from Konigssee Lake to Obersee Lake?
Go on the Konigssee boat tour whilst you’re there and make the most of your time immersed in nature. You can get to Lake Konigsee from Munich by train and bus, or go on a day tour.
Just half an hour’s drive away from Munich, this lake is one of the most popular. It’s warmer than most of the lakes in the region, which makes it a popular spot for swimming! Situated at the foot of the Alpine mountains, it’s surrounded by lush green forests. Ammersee is the third largest lake in Bavaria, and it formed some 14 thousand years ago due to a glacier melt.
There are little spots of rocky sand along the lakeshore, so you can set down your towel and sunbathe the day away. Another perk? The lake is a popular spot for sailing and windsurfing! Whether you’re already a pro or a total beginner, you have to get out on the water and give them a go.
The area also has some great camping spots, so if you’ve got enough time you should escape to Ammersee for the weekend and enjoy nights grilling sausages on a BBQ under the stars. If you get tired of chilling around the lake, head to some of the local attractions in the surrounding area like the stunning 15th century Andechs Abbey.
The shores of Tegernsee are one of the most lucrative areas in Germany. Houses start at one million euros and keep going up from there! It’s not a new occurrence either, the stunning Tegernsee lake and the surrounding nature have attracted the famous and rich for a long time. Amongst them is Hubert Burda, Gunter Sachs, and Ludwig Erhard.
Azure blue and crystal clear, the lake’s waters are so clean thanks to the continuous flow in and out of mountain water from the hills that envelop the lake. Swimming here is a real delight. After a refreshing dip, head to the Tegernsee monastery and brewery which was founded in 746 and is the place where the renowned Tegernsee beer originated.
Spend your time at Tegernsee soaking in the panoramic views of the Mangfall Mountains all around you, checking out the exteriors of the most extravagant villas, and going for long swims.
Looking for a little adventure? Well, how about paragliding! Jump off the hilltops above Tegernsee and soar into the air as the views of the lake and mountains stretch out before you and the wind sweeps your hair back – that’s how you add a little sparkle to your lakeside holiday.
Lake Chiemsee was formed some 10,000 years ago when one of the mountain glaciers in Bavaria melted. There are a few unique things about Lake Chiemsee. First of all, it’s known as the Bavarian Sea because it has little waves that wash up on the shore. There are also various islands that poke out of the lake.
It’s the largest lake in Bavaria, surrounded by reddy flatlands and distant mountains. Whilst you’re there, hop on a ferry from the mainland and travel to the main islands in the lake, Herrreninsel, Fraueninsel, and Krautinsel (the only uninhabited island of the three). One of the top attractions on the islands is the New Palace of King Ludwig II on Herreninsel – you can’t miss it!
A great destination for families and those looking for a light nature adventure, Schliersee is perfect for a gentle stroll and a day relaxing on the pebbly beaches around the lake. You can also rent a little boat and venture to the furthest corners of the lake.
Schliersee is beautiful in every season. It is particularly impressive in the winter season when the nearby towns, distant mountains, and the forests around the lake are coated in thick snow.
This stunning lake sits close to the German border with Austria. Set in the Berchtesgaden National Park, it glistens and sparkles. Nestled between rugged rocky mountains and trickling waterfalls, the views from the lake’s shore are breathtaking.
Jump into the cold water and feel the invigorating surge of adrenaline as you swim through the crystal clear water and experience that wild and wonderful feeling that immersing yourself in nature brings.
Around you there is nothing but wildlife and a few small farmhouses in a vibrant green meadow and a couple of boat houses along the lakeshore. The lake is so still its waters are riddled with reflections of the surrounding mountains and lush green forest. Immerse yourself in the tranquillity and let your mind drift away.
Fancy a hike? Then head to the 4 mile loop trail that runs from Obersee to Fischunkelalm and back. It’s an easy hike that everyone can enjoy.
This high-altitude lake in the heart of the Bavarian Alps is quaint and enchanting. It’s part of the Schliersee and Spitzingsee ski resort, which makes it a popular attraction in both summer and winter.
Spitzingsee is surrounded by little mountains covered in dark green forest, rolling meadows that run along the shores of the lake, and popular hiking routes.
Deep in the Black Forest Highlands, there’s a cute lake surrounded by a picturesque village amongst forest and rolling hills. The lake has clean beaches along its shore that are the perfect place to come and chill for a day, so pack a good book.
If you want to stay for the weekend, book lodging in Titisee-Neustadt and stay right by the lake. Go kayaking on the lake, enjoy traditional German dishes at restaurants with lake views, and make the most of the surrounding nature by going on long, leisurely hikes. Titisee is the perfect lakeside escape for families. The area is renowned for its great camping too!
Nestled between cute villages with old-fashioned wooden houses, Lake Muritz borders the Muritz National Park. Set amongst old beech forests and eerie moorland, the landscape around Lake Muritz is as enchanting as the deep blue waters of the lake itself.
It’s an especially popular destination in autumn when the leaves turn different hues of red and orange and in the winter months when the villages and mountains are covered in powdery snow.
Situated between Hamburg and Berlin, Lake Muritz attracts holiday makers that stay in the colourful boat houses by the lake and spend their days exploring the towns around the lake, hiking in the hills nearby, and cycling.
There are a few lakes that surround the notorious Hohenschwangau castle in Bavaria, and Lake Schwansee is one of them. It’s the smallest of the lakes around the castle, which arguably makes it the most enchanting. Fascinatingly, this very lake was the inspiration behind Tchaikovsky’s famous Swan Lake ballet.
Set amongst the Allgau mountains, with woodlands, tall mountain peaks, and a castle surrounding, Lake Schwansee charms all sorts of travellers, from history fans to nature lovers. There’s a short loop around the shores of the lake that takes about half an hour to walk, so if you’re not feeling willing to take on the rugged peaks in the distance you can still enjoy a stroll around the lake.
This little alpine lake is surrounded by heavenly landscapes that will nourish your soul and remind you of how wonderful nature can be. Aside from the lake, visitors come to climb the famous ridges that rise up from the shore of the lake, like the Stone Sea ridge, stroll the alpine meadows in search of flowers, and to adventure into the salt caves around Lake Funtensee.
One thing that you should know is that it gets cold at Lake Funtensee. Only the bravest swimmers will want to take on the invigorating waters of this Bavarian wonder. The area, Karlingerhaus, consistently ranks as the coldest place in Germany over the winter.
Also known as Lake Constance, Lake Bodensee is the third biggest lake in Central Europe. There are plenty of picturesque towns along its shores, like Nonnenhorn, Wasserburg, and Lindau. For those who aren’t drawn by the idea of spending the weekend camping or exploring remote mountain terrain, Bodensee is the perfect lakeside holiday.
Stay in a charming historic town, then spend your days sailing around the lake and going on hikes in the surrounding forests. If you are looking for a more extreme adventure, don’t worry! Bodensee is right on the border between Germany, Austria, and Switzerland – so the peaks of Allgau, Bregenzerwald, and Appernzellerland are all on your doorstep.
Unlike most of the lakes in Bavaria, this one is man-made. Lake Forggensee was born when a dam was built along the Lech River, stopping the water from continuing down its mountain pathway and trapping it in the Forggensee reservoir.
The turquoise waters of the lake are a great place for windsurfing, sailing, speedboat rides, and kayaking. If you’re a keen fisher it’s also worth paying for a fishing fee, if you’re lucky you might catch enough pike, trout, or eel to feed everyone that night!
There you have it, 16 beautiful lakes in Bavaria, Germany that are too amazing to miss out on. Which will you visit first?
Plan Your Germany Itinerary
Need some more inspiration for your trip? You may like these posts:
- How To Find The Stand By Me Tree in Berlin
- Trying Food From a Converted Toilet Restaurant in Berlin
- Staying at a Veggie Hotel in Berlin
- Beautiful Castles in Poland
- UNESCO Heritage Sites in Poland
- Best Themes Parks in Europe
- European Bucket List
- Beautiful Bridges in Europe
Like this post? Don’t forget to pin the below image
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.