Germany is the country of the Brothers Grimm: Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, and the Bremen Town Musicians are some of their most famous fairy tales, and you can visit the settings of these wonderful fables along the German Fairy Tale Road.
Discover the Country of Your Favorite Fairy Tales
The German Fairy Tale Road connects the towns and landscapes that were the inspiration for the fairy tales Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty, and many more.
Along the way you can marvel at medieval villages with narrow cobblestone streets and half timbered houses, romantic castles, and dense woods where you can still conjure up princes, witches and dwarfs.
The Fairy Tale Road starts in the town of Hanau, the birthplace of the two brothers Jacob and Wilhelm; it brings you to their home in Steinau where they grew up and through all the cities where the Brothers Grimm studied and worked.
A Fairy Tale Vacation for the Whole Family
A drive along Fairy Tale Road is a wonderful trip for the whole family.
Almost all the towns you visit offer family-friendly activities, such as puppet shows, storytelling events, and theater plays (in German, but with universal appeal), parades, concerts, fairy tale museums, historic Christmas markets, and lovely statues of your favorite fairy tale characters.
Highlights of the German Fairy Tale Road
- Steinau: Visit the half timbered Museum of the Brothers Grimm where Jacob and Wilhelm grew up, then stroll through the picturesque old town of Steinau.
- Schwalm Region: The region along the Schwalm River is the setting for Little Red Riding Hood's adventure. Hike through forests dark and deep, and visit the museum of Ziegenhain, where you can see the traditional costumes that might have even belonged to Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother.
- Göttingen: The Brothers Grimm worked at the University of Göttingen; visit the central square of the romantic old town and look for the statue of the little goose girl - some say it's the most kissed statue in the world (for luck).
- Trendelburg: Climb up to the medieval castle of Trendelburg, which was the setting for the tale of Rapunzel; from one of these towers, she let down her long blond hair so the prince could climb up and save her.
- Castle Sababurg: This 650-year old castle was where Sleeping Beauty slept for 100 years before a kiss saved her. You too can spend the night here: The castle is now home to a romantic hotel, surrounded by a lush park with ancient oak trees and tall ferns. In summer, there are theater performances in the castle's courtyard.
- Hamlin: The picturesque town of Hamlin was the setting for the folk tale of the Pied Piper, a rat catcher who lured the town's children away, never to be seen again. Visit the rat catchers house, enjoy the cute rodent shaped cookies from the local bakeries, and marvel at the old Glockenspiel at the "Hochzeitshaus" (Wedding House) that reenacts the legend of the Pied Piper.
- Bremen: The city of Bremen is the last stop on the Fairy Tale Road and home of the Bremen town musicians, the witty animals that outsmarted the thieves. Visit their statue on the central town square.
Travel Essentials for the Fairy Tale Road
- 370 miles long, with 50 towns and cities along the route
- Starting Point: Hanau, 13 miles east of Frankfurt
- End Point: Bremen
- Getting There: Fly to Frankfurt International Airport
- Getting Around: The best way to experience the Fairy Tale Road is by car, and you can get a rental car at the Frankfurt Airport. Take the Autobahn A66 to Hanau, the starting point of the Fairy Tale Road, and from there just follow the signposts for your route.
- Time to Take: One week
- Take a look at the Fairy Tale Road Map