God himself played skittles here
The Little Prince, who swept the extinct volcano on his planet every day, surely would have a lot of work on his hands in the Hegau. Here, nine – completely harmless – conical relics of volcanic activity that took place 14 million years ago rise in bizarre forms from the Tuscan-like landscape between the Swabian Alb and Lake Constance. Not only their shapes and evolution are distinctive, their names are rather unusual too: Hohentwiel, Hohenkrähen, Hohenhewen, Wartenberg, Wannenberg, and Mägdeberg – to name but a few.
Hohentwiel – the volcano king
The most famous of the Hegau's volcanoes, the Hohentwiel by Singen, is not only crowned by the biggest ruined fortress in Germany, but it also belongs to the oldest nature reserves in the country. The mountain with the highest vineyards in Germany was declared a nature reserve during the Second World War, in 1943. Thanks to its unique microclimate, uncommon types of orchids grow here, species that you normally only find in the Rhône delta or at the Black Sea, as do rare aromatic herbs, which took root here after blowing over from the former monastery garden of the fortress.
Adventure walks of geological and historic interest
In the Middle Ages, like the Hohentwiel, the other volcanoes of the Hegau proved to be excellent sites for castles and small fortifications. There are exactly 380 of them within a radius of 20 kilometres, making the Hegau one of the regions with the most castles in Germany. A series of expertly planned and signposted castle walks are available for visitors to enjoy.