A few months ago I rode my bike to the final town on my “must bike to” list, and during that adventure I discovered another area I wanted to bike to. I should know that a list like this is impossible to truly have an end, especially in an area like Bavaria. My energy was limited when I originally discovered this new location, so I tucked it into my brain archives for another day.
Fast forward three months, while trying to decide where to bike on a day off, this location was revived from the archives.
This beautiful building is called Schloss Elmau, “a magical sanctuary of the Bavarian alps”, and let me tell you…this place is indeed a magical sanctuary. I had heard of this resort and wellness center from some of my colleagues, but I had no idea what to expect.
I needed a destination for my bike ride, and this seemed like a good fit. The ride to the resort climbs a decent hill, and I was a bit of a sweaty mess by the time I arrived. I thought for certain the people would notice how out of place I looked, but once I walked around the corner from the front of the building I was quickly sucked into another world.
From the front of the resort I would have never guessed how vast the backside was. This location has seemingly endless land, and just when you think the land ends it drops down and there is more. Pools, yoga sanctuaries, lawn chairs, restaurants, a children’s park, tennis courts, and miles of mountain views.
I knew nothing of this place, but quickly discovered this was the location of the 2015 G7 Summit – which means nothing to me other than world leaders from multiple countries (including my home country) came here to meet and discuss important topics. Naturally I had to find the bench Obama sat on while having an important looking conversation with Angela Merkel.
The bench is a bit weathered now, and there are some lawn chairs with orange umbrellas in the distance, but this is the bench. I sat and waited to see if I felt any kind of powerful surge, but decided to go lay on one of those lawn chairs when nothing happened. I arrived around 1400 in the afternoon, and there were plenty of other humans out and about enjoying the amenities of this beautiful resort.
I rested on the lawn chair for about 30 minutes before leaving to head back home. I spent a few of those 30 minutes looking up how much a room cost, because I’d love to take my mom here someday, and with the two night minimum I had better start selling my soul in order to sleep here. You’d better believe if I am spending upwards of 600 euros to stay here that I will be spending all day on the property.
The ride up to Elmau passes by another smaller but equally impressive resort called Das Kranzbach. I encourage you to look at these websites if just to gawk at the amazing photos. The surrounding trees and mountains are like something out of a nature book. This resort, being a bit smaller, was more my speed. The exterior building was like a building out of a fairy tale.
I have a deep love for the staircase tops of these German buildings.
These resorts hold a special place in my heart because they were my last “new location” bike ride in Bavaria. I embarked on a few more rides after this, but to places I had been before. Nothing quite compares to the first time riding around the corner while discovering a new place. I will be forever thankful for the last six months of my time in Germany, biking like I had never biked before.
Q: Would you spend 600 euros for two nights in a mountain resort?