Many traditional handicrafts have survived in the Cultural Heart of Germany and this route celebrates all the artisans and companies who uphold century-old skills, creating beautiful products.
Lauscha – Kahla – Markneukirchen – Seiffen – Meissen
The small town of Lauscha in the Thuringian Forest is the birthplace of Christmas baubles and the Lauscha glass famous throughout the world. After you deep dive into the art of making delicate glass baubles, you can stay in the area for the night or drive on to Jena (Lauscha – Jena: approx. 1 hr 40 min) to spend the night there as it is nearby your next destination Kahla (Jena – Kahla: approx. 25 min).
A centre of glass production for about 500 years, Kahla offers visitors to see how glass is made at ELIAS Farbglashütte, one of the town’s oldest factories. Give it a go yourself and make your own Christmas bauble! There is also an all-year open Christmas shop if you want to stock up on decorations.
In Kahla (approx. 75 min drive from Lauscha), you can tour Thuringia’s largest porcelain producer KAHLA to learn all about porcelain production. Or just pop in the factory outlet store for some shopping.
Moving on to Saxony and Markneukirchen (approx. 1 hr 35 min drive) for some fascinating insights into musical instrument making in Germany’s so-called “musical corner” in the Vogtland region.
Markneukirchen has been a centre for musical instrument making for more than 350 years. Local craftspeople produce the finest wooden and brass instruments used by artists and musicians around. Don’t miss the museum of musical instruments in town and visit a workshop to see the experts at work. Fascinating!
Next, you’re moving north-east to Seiffen in the Ore Mountains (approx. 2 hrs 10 min drive) where a unique tradition of producing handmade wooden art and toys is upheld to this day.
To get the insight story of Christmas decorations such as intricately crafted wooden pyramids or nutcrackers that are beloved around the world, visit Seiffen’s toy museum or show workshops of local producers. Plenty opportunities for shopping, of course …
Your last stop Meissen is another approx. 90 min further north near Dresden. The picturesque historic town is the cradle of European porcelain making which started here in 1710 and we highly recommend touring “House of Meissen” where the famous porcelain manufacturer provides fascinating insights into the world of the “white gold”.
House of Meissen, Meissen
Meissen porcelain is an internationally renowned trademark and the “House of Meissen” combines a museum, showroom and demonstration workshops to see the masterful artisans at work. Tip: the onsite café serves contemporary, regionally inspired dishes, all served on delicate Meissen porcelain.