Hiking up the Wankberg in Garmisch Partenkirchen

Hiking up the Wankberg

Watch out, here comes another picture-heavy post. Summer gods have once again given us great weather here in Europe – just in time for a quick getaway to the Alps.

This time I went to a quiet town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen to the South of Munich – a town where 1936 Summer Olympics took place.

Fun fact is that these used to be two separate towns – Garmisch and Partenkirchen. But while organizing the Olympic Games these were combined to form one single city. It’s not a big one, but it’s located between mountain peaks and definitely must-visit place in Bavaria.

My route on the map

Quick facts

Location: Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Bavaria
Total time: around 7 hours up & down (incl. 1 hour lunch and photo stops
Difficulty: easy, but long

As there are peaks all around, there are endless possibilities for hiking, mountain biking and doing all sorts of summer activities, even swimming (there is a beautiful lake several kilometers away that is worth visiting).

Wankberg is located in the Olympic town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen
Wankberg is located in the Olympic town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Wankberg

Every time I visit this town, my attention is captured by a tall mountain located just to the East of the city. It stands tall and looks very impressive from the bottom. Also, it has a funny name – the Wank.

You can take a cable car to the top if you don't feel like hiking
You can take a cable car to the top if you don’t feel like hiking

You can start the hike right from the central station – a 1-km-long walk towards the mountain will get you to the beginning of the track.

The track will first take you through the forest with some nice views on the way. If you’re lucky, you may stumble upon a shepherd with his goats. I did, but was very bad in taking a picture of it, so here’s a picture of a church along the way.

But if you do decide to hike, you'll be rewarded with splendid views
But if you do decide to hike, you’ll be rewarded with splendid views

After an hour or so, there is a middle point of the trek. It’s a beautiful meadow with a spectacular view of the city and the peaks around. Spend some time and chill out – it will take some time before you reach the top from here.

A word of advice – there are many small waterfalls on the way formed by melting snow. At first it may look as a good idea to drink water from them and even gather some to carry with you. For me it turned out not so good – my stomach was protesting until the late evening after I drank on my way back.

Halfway point - a good place to lie down and relax
Halfway point – a good place to lie down and relax
Some people have a small house here as well
Some people have a small house here as well

From the meadow the track will continue for a couple of hours with more spectacular views of the city and surrounding beauty until you finally reach the top where you can chill and get some lunch. Be advised, though, portions in the restaurant are huge!

Finally, as you reach the top you can enjoy the view of the city from above
Finally, as you reach the top you can enjoy the view of the city from above
There are places to relax as well
There are places to relax as well

Unfortunately, the storm was approaching and I still had to make my way down. While I descended, I heard thunderstorms many times, but thank god the real storm and rain started just several minutes after I boarded the train.

It was a long, but a very rewarding day. I expect my legs to be quite sore the next day, but it was all worth it!

 

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