Nearby is the Zugspitze, Germany's highest mountain. That one can be reached by gondola or train from either the German or Austrian side, and there's an official border crossing station at the top.
This area is also the home of
King Ludwig's Castles.
This is the top of Wendelstein, a small mountain further to the east
that you can take a gondola or train to the top of.
The train emerges from the tunnel in the lower right corner (dark area) of
You'll see many mountain peaks with crosses erected at the top; this one
has a church at the top.
Our first stop will be the Königssee.
I recommend taking the boat ride to the far end of the big lake and hiking
from there up to the smaller lake. This is where the boat leaves from.
You'll ride on an electric battery-powered boat like this (no gasoline or
diesel powered boats are permitted on the lake).
You can get off partway down the main lake, where there's a church and
several other buildings at one of the few places that the mountain
doesn't come straight down into the lake. The name on this boat is the
Grünsee, or Green Sea. This lake is very clear, with
a greenish tint. The dark area to the left of the boat is the boat's
shadow on the bottom of the lake, in fairly deep water, visible only because
the water is so clear.
Continue on down the lake to the end of the big lake and hike up to the Obersee (smaller lake). Once you reach the Obersee you can hike along the edge to the far end.
If you want to hike further there's a waterfall beyond the lake. I didn't
go that far myself, we had to get back in time to catch the return boat
ride (at least we thought we did). This was on my 1991 vacation
in Germany, and I didn't know hardly any German. This was on about a
Tuesday or Wednesday, and we still hadn't realized that the Sunday before
the Germans had turned their clocks back for the end of daylight savings
time. Little things like this can really foul you up when you don't know
the language. For several days we'd been having problems with the usually
punctual Germans seemingly being off-schedule with everything. Breakfast
at our room wasn't served at the agreed upon time. Boats (here and at the
Chiemsee) weren't there at the scheduled time. Banks were open when they
were supposed to be closed. In Salzburg, Austria even the parking meters
had the wrong time.
At first we thought that maybe
Austria was in a different time zone. Finally on Wednesday we
figured out that we'd been off by an hour for the last 4 days.
Besides the Königssee there are several other things to see in this area: