a VirtualTourist member
I will be accompanying my husband to Kaiserslautern. He will be working all day monday through friday so I have to find ways to entertain myself. All together, we will spend three months in Kaiserslautern this year. I have a trip to Paris planned for our second weekend. Mainly, looking for ideas for the weekdays. Are there any outdoor outfitters that offer guided hiking? I would love to take a cooking or language class. If anyone has any ideas..I would appreciate any input!
Welcome to VT.
Is your husband woeking for the US military? If so, check out the USO.
Do you speak German? If so, check out the VHS, the community college. They offer a large variety of courses.
For hiking in the Palatinat forests look here:
I don't know if there are guided tours, but the trails are very well marked and on a nice day there are quite a few hikers, so you won't be alone.
Kaiserslautern is part of the VRN public transport network, which makes sightseeing trips to places like Heidelberg, Speyer, Worms, Mannheim easy and cheap.
Click on the Britsh flag to get to the English version. I was going to give you the link, but it's too long. This is not the most user-friendly site, but you get some ideas. The best ticket is the day pass, called ticket 24 for one person and 24 plus for up to five people.
www.bahn.de is better, but won't give you fares if you use local trains and buses.
Paris is very easy to get to from Kaiserslautern, you could stop on the way to spend some time in Saarbrücken.
If you type in the names of the towns in the search box here on the VT page, you'll see the tips and informations of VT members and will come up with lots of ideas of what to do.
There are lots of hiking and cycling options in the Rheinland-Pfalz region (you don’t need a guide, just a decent map). There’s a long and rich history to this part of Germany, worth reading up on, and there are many beautiful cities and towns to explore as day trips. Speyer, around Landau and Annweiler am Triefels, Worms, even as far as Mainz and Wiesbaden, Heidelberg, and Strasbourg come immediately to mind.
Language courses should be easy to find; cooking I don’t know. Look for somewhere teaching the local specialty “Saumagen,” and “Knödel” (which are delicious from that area).
The Palatine Forest is "round the corner" and perfect for hiking. Details see here: suedlicheweinstrasse.de/en/i...
This link also covers information about the wine route "Südliche Weinstrasse", the area around Neustadt, Landau, Annweiler Dad Bergzabern, a wonderful area with hills, magnificent views into the Rhine valley, good wine and food (Try "Saumagen" - I don't translate that now). Further south is easy to reach on the French side the wine route: Route des Vins d!Alsace: http://www.tourisme-alsace.com/en/, Beautiful old villages and the city of Strasbourg in the vicinity.
The Middle Rhine vally (World heritage) is only an hour away and worth visiting; also offres hiking possibilities.
You will like the area, enjoy your time!
Oh yes, great!! As the others wrote already, Pfälzer Wald (Palatinate forest) is one of the prime hiking regions in southern Germany. Kaiserslautern is in the middle :-) And yes, you don't need a guided tour, just buy a map and hike :-) A car would be good for parts deep into the forest, but for the outskirts trains and busses go.
Have a look here:
[original VT link]
and scroll down until the 9th tip "Enchanting Pfälzerwald: hiking and sagas". I have linked several additional websites for hikes. The second one, this one:
has an English part, although most of the hiking trails described are in German. But maps speak easy language. Although... there is a part that says guided tours:
but also in German.
If you are looking for cooking classes: Saarland is near, that's Saarbrücken and surroundings, what @[VT member 6de4f] already wrote. This part of Germany was either French or German over the years and is now neither nor but has both of both worlds :-)and still has a French "atmosphere" in life and dishes. Christine: do you know of interesting cooking classes there?
And the website, @[VT member 6de4f] gave you, lists also the many themed hikes in the Palatinate region (the hillslope nd flat part east of the forest). Gorgeous stuff, red wine hikes, almond blossom hikes, and all this.
Another marvellous set of villges are:
Freinsheim (walled like famous Rothenburg), Sankt Martin (so cute), Weisenheim, Kallstadt, etc.
Or north of Kaiserslautern: not that foresty but hilly and marvellous as well. Idar-Oberstein, centre of gem production:
Bad Kreuznach, spa town:
and... and... and...
you won't get bored :-))