It’s no secret that Lower Saxony, as Germany’s second-largest state, offers nearly endless expanses and a highly diverse landscape. Fields, meadows, moors, forests, heaths, and don’t forget the beaches, extending to the horizon and inviting you to take a well-earned breather in the great outdoors. But Lower Saxony’s cities also offer fascinating vistas and architectural highlights.
From East Frisia to the Lüneburg Heath, from the Weser Uplands to the Harz mountains, every region in Lower Saxony has its own special landscapes. But where is the best place to view them? The Mittelweser region is home to the geographical centre of Lower Saxony, the Emsland offers enchanting views of the idyllic Dalum-Wietmarscher Moor nature reserve, and sunsets over the North Sea can be seen especially well from Cuxland. Below you’ll find more vantage points with breathtaking long-distance views.
1. BRAUNSCHWEIGER LAND
Industrial heritage meets centuries of architectural history in Braunschweiger Land
The town hall tower in Brunswick
The reward for climbing the 161 steps of the 61 metre high town hall tower is a magnificent bird’s-eye view of Brunswick. There’s no lift, but the view is more than worth the effort. Our tip: During the Christmas market, the view down on the festively decorated stands and illuminated stalls around the cathedral is hard to beat.
Nearest car park: Schloss Arkaden car park, Georg-Eckert-Straße, 38100 Brunswick
The globe seats next to the Wakepark in Wolfsburg
The view from the ‘globe seats’ next to Wakepark Wolfsburg is the ideal vantage point for a number of photographs: the city centre, the Volkswagen Arena, the Autostadt, Wolfsburg castle or the Allerpark – perfect for catching the city’s different facets in a single shot. Many visitors are attracted from Wolfsburg and the surrounding area, especially on warm and sunny days, seeking relaxation or the wide range of leisure activities in the Allerpark.
Nearest car park: Wakepark Wolfsburg, Berliner Ring 1, 38446 Wolfsburg
2. ELBE AND WENDLAND
Close to nature in the Elbe and Wendland region.
Lookout tower on the Hoher Mechtin in Lüchow-Dannenberg
The 30 metre high lookout tower on the Hoher Mechtin hill provides an absolutely magnificent panorama. It gives you a fantastic view of the Elbhöhen-Wendland nature park and the neighbouring Niedersächsische Elbtalau biosphere reserve. Our tip: Visit during an Indian summer. The ravishing variety of colours on the deciduous trees against the bright blue sky in September and October make for a perfect photo backdrop.
Nearest car park: The Hoher Mechtin is only accessible on foot. As a starting point for your hike, the hikers’ car park is at: Spranz 1, 29499 Zernien
Kniepenberg lookout tower in Drethem
The Kniepenberg lookout tower in Drethem offers a 360° view of the Elbhöhen-Wendland nature park and is an excellent hiking destination. The view is a thrill not only for outdoor enthusiasts but also for ornithologists. With a little luck, you can watch sea eagles and geese at dizzy heights from the upper observation platform.
Nearest car park: Kniepenberg car park, K36, 29456 Hitzacker (Elbe)
A wild moor landscape meets Baroque gardens in the Emsland.
Vantage point from the hill on Dalum-Wietmarscher Moor
Dalum-Wietmarscher Moor is a nature reserve and bird sanctuary covering 1,580 hectares near Geeste. The hill with the vantage point is in the eastern part of the nature reserve. From here you can view the unusual animal and plant life of the raised bog ecosystem without disturbing it.
Nearest car park: Vantage point from the hill on Dalum-Wietmarscher Moor, Süd-Nord-Straße, 49744 Geeste
Gut Altenkamp exhibition centre in Aschendorf
The former estate of Altenkamp in Papenburg boasts a picturesque Baroque garden. The pleasure garden was restored using historical plans and now serves as a location for numerous events.
Nearest car park: Gut Altenkamp car park, Am Altenkamp, 26871 Papenburg
4. COUNTY OF BENTHEIM
A lovely landscape plus peace and quiet in the County of Bentheim.
Lookout tower on the Lönsberg in Uelsen
The County of Bentheim has heathland, deep green forests and lush meadows as far as the eye can see. You can enjoy an especially good view of the idyllic landscape from the lookout tower on the Lönsberg. When visibility is good, you can even see the medieval fort in Bad Bentheim.
Nearest car park: Zum Lönsberg, 49843 Halle
Lookout tower on the Isterberg in Schüttorf
You can see as far as the Netherlands from the lookout tower on the Isterberg. But don’t forget to look down as well, for the county lies at your feet in all its quiet beauty.
Nearest car park: Isterberger Waldhaus, Lehmstraße 1, 48465 Isterberg
5. HARZ MOUNTAINS
Mountain air in the Harz nature paradise.
It’s hard to find a view in the Harz mountains that couldn’t be a postcard scene, but one view you really shouldn’t miss is the one from the Kästeklippen. These granite cliffs give you a perfect view of the Oker valley.
Nearest car park: Sportpark an der Rennbahn, Herbrink 30, 38667 Bad Harzburg
Klaras Höhe in Osterode
You can also get a magnificent view of the Harz foreland from the Klaras Höhe vantage point in Osterode. Parking is limited there, so we recommend visiting Klaras Höhe as part of a hike.
Nearest car park: Klaras Höhe, 37520 Osterode am Harz
6. LÜNEBURG HEATH
Heather in bloom in Lüneburg Heath.
Once you’ve seen the heather in bloom on Wilseder Berg, you’ll never want to let another August or September pass without a visit to Lüneburg Heath. The sea of purple flowers is simply too beautiful!
Nearest car park: Undeloh visitor car park: Wilseder Straße, 21274 Undeloh
Things take on an air of the mystical at the Oldendorfer Totenstatt. The burial mounds in the middle of the heath landscape bear witness to over 5000 years of human history. The best time to enjoy the special atmosphere there is in morning mist or at sunset.
Nearest car park: Oldendorfer Totenstatt car park, Maxener Straße, 21385 Oldendorf (Luhe)
Bang in the centre of Lower Saxony
Geographical centre of Lower Saxony in the County of Hoya
Where is the centre of Lower Saxony? Hallo Niedersachsen, a regional TV programme by the broadcaster NDR, looked into this question in 2003. The answer: in the middle of a field near Hoyerhagen. The programme had a marker stone placed to indicate the true centre of Lower Saxony. Visitors can even have their visits documented at the County of Hoya tourist information centre or the town hall.
Nearest car park: Wehrenberg, 27318 Hoyerhagen
8. EAST FRISIAN ISLANDS
Beach bliss on the East Frisian islands of Juist and Borkum.
The beach on Juist
No photo could ever truly do justice to the beach on Juist. Stretching over 17 kilometres of white sand, it’s perfect for long and undisturbed walks. Our tip: Enjoy the sunset from the platform at the main beach entrance.
Note: Juist is a car-free island.
Watch seals on the northern beach on Borkum
One of the best places to watch wild seals (from a safe distance) is the northern beach on Borkum. If you would like to see them up close, you can take a guided walk.
Nearest car park: Am Langen Wasser, 26757 Borkum
9. OLDENBURGER MÜNSTERLAND
Rural idyll in the Oldenburger Münsterland.
Thülsfelder Talsperre recreation area
The Thülsfelder Talsperre recreation area is considered a true gem of the Oldenburger Münsterland. Walk over the lagoon bridge and enjoy the view of diverse moor, forest and heath landscapes.
Nearest car park: Talsperre-Süd hikers’ car park, 49681 Garrel
10. OSNABRÜCKER LAND
Getting to the top in Osnabrücker Land.
Bad Iburg treetop trail
Towards the sun: If you climb up from the shady spa park to the 30 metre high platforms on the treetop trail in Bad Iburg, the first thing you need to do is get used to how bright it is up there. Here the TERRA.vita nature and geopark presents a different aspect with great views over the treetops towards Iburg Castle.
Nearest car park: Philipp-Sigismund-Allee 4, 49186 Bad Iburg
Felsrippe viewing platform on the Piesberg
The Felsrippe viewing platform on the Piesberg is the highest point in the city of Osnabrück and provides a fantastic view of the quarry, Teutoburg Forest and the TERRA.vita UNESCO Global Geopark.
Nearest car park: Car park at the Museum für Industriekultur, Fürstenauer Weg 191, 49090 Osnabrück
11. EAST FRISIA
Sea breeze in East Frisia.
Pilsum Lighthouse in Krummhörn-Greetsiel
No list of special vantage points would be complete without a typical East Frisian lighthouse. Built in 1890, the Pilsum Lighthouse has appeared in various films by comedian Otto Waalkes, and provides a magnificent view of the East Frisian coast.
Nearest car park: Zum Alten Leuchtturm 2, 26736 Pilsum
Kiekkaaste near Bunde
The Kiekkaaste observation platform gives you a wonderful view of the untamed Wadden Sea. The platform is built on stilts to keep it safely above high tide, but we still recommend that you wear wellies. During the spring tides, water can quickly cover the footpath.
Nearest car park: 26831 Bunde
12. NORTH SEA-ELBE-WESER
Get out and enjoy nature in the North Sea-Elbe-Weser region.
Alte Liebe viewing platform
You could rightly say the Alte Liebe in Cuxhaven is really old. It was built as a pier in 1733 and now serves as a viewing platform. Take in the salty North Sea breeze and enjoy the view.
Nearest car park: Am Alten Hafen, Leuchtturmweg, 27472 Cuxhaven
A black, 37 metre high tower overlooks the fishing harbour in Dorum-Neufeld: the Obereversand Lighthouse, from which visitors have a wonderful view of the Lower Saxony Wadden Sea National Park.
Nearest car park: Am Kutterhafen 3, 27639 Dorum
The untouched riverscape of the Oste valley delights multitudes of hikers every year. It wasn’t designated a ‘Qualitätsweg Wanderbares Deutschland - Traumtour’ (Walkable Germany Quality Trail – Dream Route) by the German Hiking Association for nothing. On the Oste valley NORDPFAD hiking trail, you can enjoy a wonderful view of the Oste river and the surrounding riparian woodlands.
Nearest car park: Car park near the Granstedt burial mound field, Peehsbarg, 27446 Granstedt
On the Börde Sittensen NORDPFAD hiking trail, you’ll see impressive moors and endless vistas. As a nature reserve and bird sanctuary, the 1000-hectare Tister Bauernmoor is also an outstanding place for bird-watching.
Nearest car park: 27419 Tiste, Moorbahn Burgsittensen / Haus der Natur, Hauptstraße 7
13. HOLIDAY REGION OF HANOVER
Enjoy city life in the holiday region of Hanover.
The Hanover town hall dome
You haven’t really been in Hanover if you haven’t stood in amazement in front of the New Town Hall. But it’s not just the building itself that’s splendid. You get the best view of the city from the viewing platform in the dome. If the weather cooperates, you can even see all the way to the Deister hills. And it’s not just the view of Hanover that’s unique, but also the way you arrive at it. To get to the town hall’s dome, you take a parabola lift that starts out vertically and then transports you at a 17° angle.
Nearest car park: Friedrichswall 11, 30159 Hanover
14. WESER UPLANDS
Incredible views of the ‘home of hiking’
The Jahrtausendblick vantage point in Steinzeichen Steinbergen
The ideal destination for those who love peace and quiet as well as a sporting challenge, the site had its origins as an off-site project for Expo 2000. Once you’ve climbed the 156 steps, you’ll have a unique view of the Weser river valley from the Jahrtausendblick (‘Millennium View’) vantage point.
Nearest car park: Arensburger Str. 4, 31737 Rinteln
Tillyschanze in Hann. Münden
Over the rooftops of Hann. Münden The Tillyschanze tower, at around 25 metres high, offers a magnificent view of Hann. Münden’s historical old town and the heights of the Kaufungen, Bramwald and Reinhardswald forests.
Nearest car park: How to get there
MORE VANTAGE POINTS IN LOWER SAXONY
This list of the best vantage points in Lower Saxony is just that – a list – and not a ranking.
Did we miss any insider favourites? Email us and we’ll add it to our list.
Important: Please check the car park addresses before heading for a destination.
Last updated: May 2021