All posts filed under: Cultural Differences of The Black Forest

What are Germans Like?

Destinations Off The Beaten Path in Germany for 2019

There are only a few forested areas in central Europe where you find good hiking opportunities. There are fewer still with mountains. The Black Forest in Germany is one of the best hiking areas for a couple reasons. My name is Simone and I am from The Black Forest in Germany. I have hiked in North America and Australia, so I know how other people think of hiking. A friend once pointed out to me while living in San Francisco, California; American’s are “goal oriented”, while Europeans are “process oriented”. That is a great way to understand the differences in hiking between these cultures. You may need to shift gears to get the hiking groove here, but once you get-it, you’ll never be the same. Canadians hike in expansive forests where they encounter few people. Americans and Australians are also familiar with such massive landscapes. Hiking there often requires careful preparation to meet nature in such remoteness. In The Black Forest the weather changes quickly. You will often think the locals look over-prepared with all …

How to get seated in a German restaurant

Have you ever wondered how to behave correctly when entering a restaurant in Germany? Basic German restaurants don’t have a hostess. Therefore – upon entering the place greet the waitress/owner/bar tender (if you see anyone), then proceed to an appropriate table by yourself (‘appropriate’ meaning – don’t choose a table for 6 if you are by yourself). If there is anything wrong with your choice the waiter will tell you (for sure – German waiters don’t mind telling you what they think of your choice). In a casual place people might come up to you and ask if they can share your table (so can you). And the right answer would be YES (unless there is a good reason to say no). If you happen to have a restaurant then check in with the waitress first so they can place you at a table. What’s your experience on getting seated in a German restaurant? Any tips or recommendations on how to behave if you don’t speak German?

Wanna ‘Live like a German’?

If you have always wanted to visit Germany but always thought it might be difficult to organize the trip, we have found the perfect solution for you.  “Live Like a German” is a website which helps you plan your entire trip – from flights, hotels, tours, train tickets, car rentals, apartment rentals, day trips – whatever you could possibly need – Live-Like-A-German can help. The Kraft family who runs Live-Like-A-German (a German couple that immigrated to the US ten years ago) can provide all the insider tips about where to go and what to do, even in the most remote and secluded parts of Germany. And the bonus – they have lived in the US long enough to know what Americans really like. On their web site you can find hundreds of articles about specific destinations, fun trips and activities as well as fantastic restaurants and nighttime spots. The texts are short and sweet and include pictures as well as links for further reading. This web site is both a helpful travel guide and a …

The Black Forest PomPom Hat or what exactly is a Bollenhut?

The Black Forest is not only being associated with Black Forest Cake, Black Forest Ham and Cuckoo Clocks but also with the so-called Bollenhut – a PomPom Hat which comes in 2 colors. The Bollenhut consists of 11 handmade pompoms (14 pompoms altogether but only 11 are visible). The hat can be up to 2 kilograms heavy and comes in the colors red and black. The rule is that unmarried women wear a red hat until their wedding. Once married, they wear a black hat. Although the Bollenhut is one of things people might associate with the Black Forest, it is actually only being worn in 3 communities – Gutach, Wolfach-Kirnbach and Hornberg-Reichenbach. The origins of the hat and the appropriate dress can be traced back to the mid-1700s which makes it one of the oldest Black Forest Costumes. These days it’s only worn on holidays or other big events. Click here to see some of the Bollenhut pictures we took over time. The latest marketing campaing of Gutach shows a VW beetle wearing a …