Furth im Wald

a walk into the bavarian forest

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Furth im Wald (Bavarian Forest)

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the Ammersee

a marvellous recreation area

all town descriptions in German

Bavaria's treasure box of fairy tales and legends

a German restaurant in Springfield, MA 01103

another good travel guide from Bavaria from my friend Helmut in Canada

Where on the world you can find dragons and princesses? First you perhaps have in your family but the second one is very rare in our times. Not in Bavaria, there is one place, every year a brave man has to risk his life to save a princess from a dragon. And they have nice princesses there. You will see that? Ok, let's go to Furth in the Forest.

There are a lot of well known forests in Germany, one example even in music is the Black Forest. But we are going today in the Bavarian Forest near the border to the Czech Republic, where the Bohemian Forest begins. Furth im Wald, so the German name I will use now, is a really old border town between Germany and the eastern neighbourhood.

Since 1990 the Iron Wall is fallen and our visit today leads us just between Munich and Prag. You can reach Furth im Wald by daily train connections or easier, drive with me or my partners over historical roads to that lovely place.

This area and the town needs more than an one-day-trip, there are so many things to hear, to see and to discover, you will hear. All seasons of a year are nice and different, naturally, but in august, from the 11th till 21th, you should have been there when the dragon comes But be not afraid, the terribly beast never won since 500 years, always one brave man defend this lovely landscape and the princess owing it. I guess, you know now, that I talk about a great cultural event pulling over centuries thousands of people in that town Furth im Wald. This folk theatre based on historical roots and legends from the Middle Ages.

A dragon was mostly, some countries in the world may think perhaps otherwise, the sign of the evil. Old legends told us about huge beasts looking like worms blowing fire out of the nose and so on.

In the eyes of simple people long raids of troops are similar looking and so it was a long time in the area of Furth im Wald too. This small town had seen thousands of soldiers running over the border to Bohemia and back. The death was in earlier times a steady citizen of that town and after the Bohemian reformer Jan Hus was sentenced to death in 1415, the torch of destroy was burning everywhere. In 1431 the imperial army lead by Cardinal Julian Caesarini was beaten devastatingly. In single scattered groups, the commanders reached the small town Furth im Wald where the people were searching for shelter and protection after having fled from the "dragon". The next years saw the Plague as a not invited guest in town.

So you can believe that the alive stayed had a hard time especially the traders on that old main street avoided the contaminated area. But the forest people were clever. In all centuries before they always built up their damaged town like an phoenix coming out of the ashes and after the told last desasters they found another way. They editet a play about the fight between the evil and the good and on this way they pulled from near and far all the others curious about the new event in that town. So the traders came again and Furth im Wald grew up. Even in our hurry-up-times this 500 years old event is really a must to see and a big fun, believe me.

Beside of that great cultural event the whole area is rich of interesting things vacationeers are looking for. One main thing in holydays is normally to test other and hopely good food. In this case you are just in the middle of two famous kitchens, on one side the bavarian one and on the other side the bohemian kitchen. Who never before has eaten bohemian dumplings with plums inside he miss an unforgettable pleasure for tongue and stomache. Because the border to the Czech Republic is not far, the dishes offers both, bavarian and bohemian. And also the true roots of the Budweiser or Pilsener beer are neer so they offer these too.

An old German word says "after a good meal there is a choice of twice - either sleep or walk" . For sleeping the landscape is to nice. Soft hills up to the mountains of the High-Bow, marvellous ways through the nature park woods, bike lanes, a paradise for fishermen, bathing in natural lakes or pools, tennis courts, an 18-hole-golf court, a underwater-fish-watching station, a small zoo where kids can touch the animals of the area and lot more will keep you busy so you can eat like a wulf but not getting fat.

Furth im Wald is a lovely town, even in winter times, they have all skiing possibilities and a real old bavarian use - icestick shooting. Actual one website is too short to show or tell all important things about this excellent place for vacation - you should try it. The people in that area are very nice and practice over centuries hospitality, you will see if you contact their tourist information. Like the town and the hearts are open for guests so the mind there is also open for new things, take a look on their own homepages - the town Furth im Wald or the slaughter of the dragon.

At last for them who like it two tales from that area. Both have historical roots, let's start first with the documented one. In 1347 old papers prove that one german army leader named Peter von Egg was beheaded in case of cowardice in war. The folks told the story in that way:

Peter von Egg

Peter Eckher von Eck was a church prince of Straubing and as the Bohemian king Karl was invading the district of the Bavarian Forest killing, burning, robbing and raping with a big army he sent his own son with a strong army against him. His son was also named Peter like the use was in the old times.

The son was proud about that order, he was really hot to fight against the Bohemians for the glory of his family name and the country.

But his wife was very sad about and tried to keep him away from that fight because she was a member of one old Bohemian aristocracy and she knew that her brother was fighting in the invading army. She was not successfull to keep her husband Peter at home but he promised her at least that he would not kill her brother.

At Furth im Wald the armies met together. The Bavarians are fighting like devils, especially the young Peter von Egg was like a lion. But suddenly, in the middle of the hardest fights, his brother attacked him. As Peter saw the heraldic figure of his wifes family on the shield from that fighter running against him something touched his mind. His arm with the sword sank down and he seemed to hear his crying wife, an unvisible arm turned his horse and he flew. As his army saw the leader going back they all give up and so the Bohemians won the battle.

As his father was told what has happened he raged up like a wounded lion. He gave order his son should be bounded in chains and then he judged him to death by the executioner. His son begged him, not for his life only to give him not such a shame, he begged for another chance to die in a battle but his father denied it. So Peter von Egg, junior, was executed on Saint Coloman's day 1347 in Straubing.

The other story was told in the ancient times mostly from people going home at midnight. Perhaps they had sometimes one beer to much but you never know what's true or not. There are so much things between earth and heaven and maybe ...

The headless white horse

Once upon a time a robber baron from Bohemia was captured and brought to the castle of Furth im Wald to court. Because he was so evil they punished to death by starving. Just as they wanted to throw him in the deepest jail under the tower he freed himself and jump on his white horse standing also in the castle's yard. The brave animal speeded in direction of the gate and freedom but the gate guard was very smart. You must know, in the old times they had gates or doors like we have but in addition they had iron gates falling down too. This gate guard cutted the rope which was used to pull up the additional falling gate, the gate smashed down and deheaded the brave horse. So the robber baron was thrown in the jail and died there.

Long times after that happened a headless white horse with a baron's figure was seen in Furth mostly and only at midnight. Several years later the figure was disappeared, the horse alone was to see. People believed that prayers had solved the soul of the baron but nobody had prayed for the brave animal.

Script by J.W.Lohfink, for any mistakes in spell or grammar I apologize as a precaution, corrections, questions or comments please mail to me.

>> German version

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