Located in the midst of stunning, natural mountain scenery in Bavaria’s Traunstein district, the alpine village and municipality of Ruhpolding is a superb choice of holiday destination. Spend time enjoying as many enticing attractions as you can in this beautiful, exciting and fun-filled paradise in Germany’s southern Alps.
When to Visit
Thanks to Ruhpolding’s alpine location, every season has so much to offer, each with its unique charms. Whichever season you choose, you’ll have an unforgettable time, but tastes and preferences vary, so here are some seasonal attractions to help you choose the best time for you and your family or companions to visit Ruhpolding.
The Spring Season
The snows of winter retreat to their high mountain slopes and summits, mountain streams flow freely again, and the spring season bursts into life with a myriad of colourful flowers and alpine plants. The air is clear and fragrant and the views are amazing from any elevated vantage point above the Ruhpolding valley. It’s a great time to go hiking along the many mountain-side trails and to take superb landscape photos. With scenery like this, even the most photographically challenged camera owner can’t fail to take pictures that will make their friends back home envious.
The Summer Season
Summer is pleasantly warm, although temperatures can reach as high as the mid-thirties in July and August. Mostly it’s comfortable and great for getting out to explore the surrounding countryside. Make the most of the summer sunshine with a trip to nearby Chiemsee Lake. Have a refreshing swim in its clear waters or take a short boat trip to visit one of its three main islands: Herreninsel, Frauenchiemsee or Krautinsel.
The Autumn Season
Autumn is mild in Ruhpolding valley and is basically an extension of summer. Most of the summer activities can still be enjoyed in autumn, and this is also a favourite season for cycling and mountain bike tours and competitions on the many mountain bike trails, some of which reach well over a thousand metres in height. Your hotel’s staff will be happy to let you know about upcoming competitions.
The Winter Season
As the year nears its end, the winter season gets underway. Skiing and other winter sports, at both amateur and professional level, can be enjoyed every day, and each year at the end of December, the eagerly awaited ‘Winter Market‘ is held where local artisans and farmers bring their wares and produce for sale. It’s a terrific, lively and festive atmosphere at this time of year. Early in the new year, Ruhpolding is also one of the host locations of the annual Biathlon World Cup – an important and popular event that attracts spectators and participants from all over the world.
Two must-see attractions that can be visited at any time of year are Rauchsberg and Freizeit Park.
Rauchsberg is a nearby mountain reaching over 1600 metres. Weather permitting, you can hike to the summit or ascend effortlessly by cable car. The views are stupendous, especially on sunny days in winter and early spring when the air is at its clearest.
Freizeit Park is a fantastic place for children and adults alike with all the fun of the fair, from trampolines to white-knuckle roller coaster rides and much more. The park is open every day from 9am until 6pm. Take a look at some of the park’s attractions on this video of Freizeit Park
Most foreign visitors to Ruhpolding arrive first at Munich International Airport. From Munich, you can easily travel by train to Ruhpolding, which lies 113 kilometres to the south east and is located in the the south of the Chiemgau region of the Alps.
The journey time is just under two hours and the cost is around 20 euros. There are also bus services to Ruhpolding, but they’re less direct and take longer. Otherwise, you can drive to Ruhpolding by following satnav or map instructions. From Munich, it’s a pleasant route to drive, with good roads and clear road signs, and as with taking the train, the journey can be completed in under two hours.
While walking is a pleasant way to get around the village and beyond, there are also convenient bus services available that are regular, comfortable and reasonably priced.
Ruhpolding Village Line
Get around to all parts of the village easily and conveniently using buses of the Rupholding Village Line. These buses also go close to several walking and hiking trail access points in Ruhpolding Valley.
Regional bus line (RVO)
The Regional Bus Line can also be used to take you to many interesting locations such as the neighbouring towns of Inzell and Reit im Winkl.
Excursions can also be arranged through various hotels and tour companies with trips to many places such as Chiemsee Lake, and Lake Konigsee and other natural beauty spots. And for a completely different day out, the famous historic Austrian city of Salzburg is just across the border and makes a great day trip for city sightseeing and excellent shopping.
There are plenty of great hotels in Ruhpolding. Most are family-run ventures and all are clean and comfortable. Their restaurants and bars are cosy and inviting, and food and drink are delicious. The Alpenhotel Wittelsbach is probably the best-known hotel, but all hotels offer a high standard of comfort with an average room rate of around 100 euros per night.
What really impresses Ruhpolding’s hotel guests, however, is the fantastic care they receive. The hotel staff and owners make every possible effort to welcome you, get to know you personally and ensure your stay is as enjoyable as it can be. In fact, it’s just normal Ruhpolding hospitality, but it certainly leaves an unexpected and unforgettable impression on first time visitors.
Every region of Germany has its own cuisine and local delicacies, and wonderful examples of local fayre are readily available in the cafes and restaurants of Ruhpolding. The success and popularity of this cuisine is due not only to its reliance on fresh and locally-sourced ingredients, but also to the care put into the preparation of it.
There are many traditional dishes, snacks and drinks you can try such as: Knodel, Gelbwurst and pretzels, Franconian wine, a range of tasty Bavarian beers and much more. The patron of every restaurant you venture into will be more than pleased to introduce you to their delicious range of traditional, local cuisine.
With its location in the Alps, it’s no surprise that winter sports are highly developed in and around Ruhpolding. Skiing is very popular, obviously, and for novices to the sport, there are skiing instruction courses that can be taken. Mountain biking and hang gliding are also very popular activities around Ruhpolding, and for those who prefer a less strenuous form of sport, there’s pony riding, fishing, shooting and golf.
RuhpPolding is also a regular host of the annual Biathlon World Cup in winter. It’s a busy and very exciting event as you can see in this video of a recently held Biathlon in Ruhpolding.
Culture is alive and well in Ruhpolding, and the locals, understandably, are very proud of their alpine cultural heritage and are pleased to show it off to all of their visitors. Delve into the area’s many cultural offerings to get a deeper understanding of its great traditions. The more you learn about local culture, the more Ruhpolding will feel like your ‘home from home’.
The local love of tradition explains why there are some very interesting museums in Ruhpolding. The Ruhpolding Lumberjack Museum shows the very important lumber industry that thrived here, while the Bartholomäus Schmucker Heritage Museum has a sizeable collection of artefacts that provide a fascinating insight into the way of life of Bavarian communities in bygone days.
Art and Drama
For art lovers, the modern Galerie Kaysser houses important works by international artists and exhibitions are regularly held there, and for those needing a more theatrical form of entertainment, the Ruhpolding Theatre Group frequently stages performances.
Music and Dance
You can find a wide variety of traditional music of the region played live in Ruhpolding, from music played live to accompany traditional dancing at local festivals to lively traditional folk music played in bars such as Holztube Steakhouse pub and restaurant. Lovers of contemporary music will also be in for a treat when the the Chiemsee Summer Festival arrives. It takes place over a three-day period in mid August and is filled with many great acts. The 2017 line up will include Biffy Clyro and The Offspring.
There is just so much to see and do in and around Ruhpolding, and there’s so much fun and enjoyment to be had that you’ll be unlikely to see or do everything you want in the time you’ve got. Your gracious hosts’ simple solution to that problem is likely to be: “So, come back again soon.”, and having savoured the delights of both Ruhpolding and its warm and welcoming people, there’s every chance that you will.