Things to do Five tips for winter outings in the region

Bonn · The winter sports area at Winterberg is enjoying fresh snow, allowing visitors to enjoy skiing and other winter activities. The Wintersport Arena Sauerland is one of the most important winter sports regions north of the Alps. An interactive museum with a virtual ship and a world of music videos at a World Heritage Site are also worth a visit if you’re looking for something to do in these winter months.

 Cross country skiing in Wunderhausen near Winterberg.

Cross country skiing in Wunderhausen near Winterberg.

Foto: Marco Kraft

Winterberg and Willingen covered in fresh snow

Tuesday overnight last week, lots of fresh snow came to the Sauerland! On the webcam, the “Snow White” slope in Winterberg glistened, full of fresh powder snow. It was similar on the ski slopes in the neighboring town of Willingen. Both Winterberg and Willingen belong to the Wintersport Arena Sauerland, which includes more than two dozen regional ski areas, some also featuring other winter activities. The consortium was founded almost 20 years ago, and with 130 lifts and 300 hectares of slopes, it is now one of the most important winter sports regions north of the Alps.

"The recent snowfall and cold temperatures have improved conditions by leaps and bounds," said Susanne Schulten, spokeswoman for the Wintersport Arena Sauerland ski region in Winterberg. "At least six ski areas have a good 30 ski lifts open this weekend, and eight areas are expected to have luge lifts running." If conditions are stable, cross-country skiing will also begin. The photo shows a cross-country ski trail in Wunderthausen near Winterberg. "But winter hikes also provide a beautiful snowy experience," Schulten says.

The 2G rule is in effect for the ski areas. Due to the pandemic situation, ticket allotments have been reduced. To keep queuing times at the ticket offices to a minimum, people are recommended to book tickets in advance for the main areas of Winterberg, Willingen, Neuastenberg and Altastenberg.

Info: Tel. (02981) 820 633;

[Link auf]Sun salutations in the park

The yoga movements are more fun outdoors, but because of the winter weather, the "sun salutations" are currently taking place in a more sheltered space: the popular yoga classes in Bad Neuenahr's Kurpark are now every Sunday at 10:30 a.m. on the upper floor of the Kurpark Café, and in the spring they will return to the outdoors. Certified yoga instructor Jessica Lösch has been leading the "Yoga in the Park" course for five years, for the "young and old, beginners and advanced, residents and visitors alike." The course fee is eight euros per hour. Currently, the "2G+" rule is in effect (participants with boosters are exempt from testing).

Info: Tel. (0152) 299 17 686;;

[Link auf]Interactive museum takes visitors on a virtual ship

Romanticism is part and parcel of the Rhine. More than 40 castles, fortresses and ruins in the Upper Middle Rhine Valley fuel the imagination, including Gutenfels Castle near Kaub. There are also "legendary" stories about the Loreley and other places that are always fun to hear.  For example, the Romanticum Koblenz museum. The interactive museum takes visitors aboard a virtual ship. Once on board, visitors navigate up to 70 interactive stations. A "castle camera" allows visitors to take a look inside old walls, while the "saga searchlight" helps them identify myths and legends. There are encounters with Rhine romanticists such as Heinrich Heine and William Turner. In a karaoke bar, visitors can try singing the song of the Loreley.

Info in English: Tel. (0261) 12 91 608;

225 years ago, on January 10, 1797, Annette von Droste-Hülshoff saw the first light of day at Hülshoff Castle in Havixbeck. Today, a foundation and the "Center for Literature" maintain the poet's legacy on the estate near Münster. "Her texts are full of inexplicable events," says a press release for the anniversary year. In March, the project called  "Living with the Ghosts" will start. In a "Droste Lab," the permanent exhibition on the poet's life and work will be "rethought." The Droste novella "Die Judenbuche" will be presented as a headphone reading, film installation and performance.

Info: Tel. (02534) 10 52;

[Link auf]The whole world of music videos at a World Heritage Site

The World Cultural Heritage Site Völklinger Hütte in Saarland was once an ironworks; the old areas with ore hall and blast furnaces can be visited. Today it is also used for spectacular exhibitions, with the next one starting on January 22: General Director Ralf Beil opens "The World of Music Videos" (runs until Oct. 16). Large screens have been installed in the blasting house, and 80 videos from 30 countries can be seen. Groundbreaking works by Laurie Anderson, Falco, Genesis, Lady Gaga and Pussy Riot, for example, have been selected.

A hip-hop project from Saarbrücken is also a part of it: The nationally known band Genetikk with rapper Kappa filmed their video contribution "Maybe" in May 2021 at the Völklingen Ironworks.

Info: Tel. (06898) 9100 100;

Translation: ck

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