Named after the two rivers that flow through its heart, the Saale-Unstrut Wine Region is the northernmost of Germany’s 13 wine-growing regions. Wine has been produced here for more than 1,000 years, with the 12th-century Pfortenser Köppelberg vineyard still in existence today. Many of the region’s terraced vineyards are planted with Müller-Thurgau grapes, as well as Pinot Blanc, Silvaner and Riesling.
Things to do in Saale-Unstrut
Spend a day sightseeing in charming Naumburg, which centres around the UNESCO World Heritage-listed St. Peter and Paul Cathedral. Learn about the life and work of the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche at the Nietzsche Haus and visit the tranquil Kloster Pforta, which is surrounded by vineyards planted by its Cistercian monks.
Famed for its 11th-century castle and historic town centre, Freyburg has been nicknamed the “Tuscany of the North”. Marvel at the dry stone walls and historic vineyards huts of the Schweigenberg area and sample sparkling wine at the famous Rotkäppchen Sektkellerei. Overlooking Freyburg is Schloss Neuenburg where you can learn about the region’s winemaking history while exploring the period-furnished rooms.
One of the most beautiful university cities in Germany is Merseburg, which lies on the banks of the River Saale to the west of Leipzig. It features a charismatic Town Hall and a fairytale-like castle, which now houses a museum detailing the history of Central Germany. A highlight of visiting Merseburg is listening to the organ being played in its Gothic cathedral before strolling through the adjacent gardens.
Getting around Saale-Unstrut
The Saale-Unstrut Wine Region is around an hour’s drive from Leipzig and Leipzig/Halle Airport, which has flights to destinations across Europe and North Africa. Trains connect to towns throughout the wine-growing region while having your own vehicle gives you greater freedom to explore.