Eibsee – the most photogenic lake in Bavaria

You will most certainly find photographs of this picturesque place on every famous German photographer’s Instagram. There is more to this place than you would expect at the first encounter. It offers more than one faces for you to view and get to know. This favourite destination of all photographers reminds you one time of Canada lakes, other time it takes you as far as to an island in Caribbean. The sight of blue-green water surrounded by grand mountains is something you can imagine yourself to be looking at for hours with no regrets.

Bavaria, and Bavarian Alps especially, is one of the most visited regions in Germany, as it has plenty to offer. You will, no doubt, have any problem whatsoever to decide how to spend your holiday here. Not only can you do a lot of sightseeing in picturesque towns full of history and culture, but the nature here is known and attractive for its lakes and mountain ranges.

One of the most delightful lakes to stroll around and take pictures of is the glacial lake, Eibsee. You’ll find it 974 m.a.s.l., peacefully lying underneath majestic Wetterstein mountain range. The 7km long walk around the lake is very gentle and undemanding. It offers many secrets coves and nooks together with more little adjacent lakes to see. The largest from these are Frillensee and Steingringpriel. There are 8 smaller islands in Eibsee which make it look even more exotic. However, Eibsee is not the largest lake (only 177,4 ha / 430 acres), and only 35m deep, so it cannot really compete with other Bavarian lakes – size wise. On the other hand, this ‘size defect’ makes it even more special and appealing in my opinion.

The Tallest German Peak

What makes this place even more photogenic is the tallest peak majestically rising to the impressive height of 2962 m.a.s.l. It was first climbed in 1820 by Josef Naus, a geodesist and a Bavarian army lieutenant, and a mountain guide Johann George Tauschl. To public, it became accessible only in 1926, when a cable car was built to bring people up to 2805 m.a.s.l.

Nowadays, there is a very attractive new cable car, which breaks many world records in technology. It has the world’s tallest steel support (127m), the world’s largest difference in elevation (1945m), and it covers the longest unsupported span between two supports (3213m). Each cabin has room for 120 passengers and the trip to the summit takes only unbelievable 10 minutes, during which you can enjoy the view of the lake underneath.

How to Get There

Eibsee lies at the town of Grainau, 9km south of Garmisch-Partenkirchen (hereinafter referred to as GaPa), and about 100km far from Munich. If Munich is the place you want to leave from to get to Eibsee, then there are two ways how to get there. You can take a train or you can go by car. If you decide to drive, the journey might be very affected by the state of A95 highway and its traffic. That depends on the time you decide to travel. Saturdays, holidays and rush hours are always problematic. The one place that you will always have to use your patience is right before the Oberau exit, where the lanes of the ending highway are merging into one lane. In these cases, it is good to reconsider and go for the other – railroad option. Deutsche Bahn operates more than 20 trains from Munich to GaPa. Last year, this company even offered a special ticket – Garmischer Ski-Ticket, which was a transfer ticket (you’ll change in GaPa) that took you directly to the Zugspitze summit. You could get off at Eibsee first, to walk around a little of course.

Enjoy Your Visit and Have Some Skiing Fun Time Too

As I have said already, Eibsee can surprise you with its boundless variety of year round activities. Each season it has something a little different to offer, and the lake shows another of its faces four times a year. In summer you can do lots of things like swimming, kayaking, or hiking. Autumn will leave you speechless with its beautiful sceneries full of colours. Winter is a perfect time for taking your skis up to the slopes of Zugspitze. Ski resort here is not the largest one, but provides all the service you need when you want a good day of skiing and winter sports. There are 11 runs for skiers (blue intermediate runs, red advanced runs, and black expert runs), 3 sledding runs, an igloo village, and 3 restaurants where you can satisfy your taste buds. This season’s day tickets will cost you 46.50 euro per person, while a family ski pass for 2 adults plus 2 children costs 124 euro.

Eibsee and Garmisch-Partenkirchen is a very popular vacation spot all year round. If you plan a trip to Munich or anywhere close, you should definitely put this on your “To visit and see list”. I personally can strongly recommend it. There are more things to see and do in the Eibsee surroundings. Apart from going up the highest German mountain, you could pay a visit to an adjacent Linderhof Palace, or Ettal Abbey. Neuschwanstein – a castle which is the most often visited Bavarian sight is only an hour ride from Eibsee too. There are certainly many options for you to choose from.


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