In the green heart of Germany
Some slogans go on and on. When August Trinius brought out his booklet entitled ‘Thüringen – Grünes Herz Deutschlands’ [‘Thuringia – the green heart of Germany’] at the end of the 19th century, he probably never thought that, over 100 years later, “the green heart” would still be THE synonym for the small German state – on account of its central position and, of course, because being 33 per cent covered in woodland makes it one of Germany’s most richly forested states. Jena’s urban forest alone covers an area the size of approximately 1,600 large football fields. Around a quarter of the Thuringia territory is preserved and developed as national natural landscape. This includes, for instance, the Südharz, Kyffhäuser and Thüringer Schiefergebirge nature parks, the Hainich national park and the Rhön biosphere reserve. The most well-known natural treasure is, without a doubt, the Thuringian Forest in the south-west of the state. Only around an hour’s drive from Jena, this is a fantastic place to hike, cycle or go skiing.