A few paces away from the historic city an area of peacefulness and tranquillity spreads out in front of the former fortifications consisting of gardens, former mills and fruit orchards. Even vines used to grow here.
Langen is also surrounded by innumerable walking and cycling paths leading through fields, meadows and woodland. From anywhere in the city one can be in the midst of nature in just a few minutes. Cyclists can explore Langen’s environs on a route 20 kilometres in length.
To the south-east of Langen is the so-called Koberstadt. In this extensive area of woodland burial mounds from the Early Iron Age (around 500 B.C.) are located. The magnificent deciduous forest is an ideal recreational area in which to go walking, cycling and horse-riding. The horn is still sounded for the wild boar hunt today. At the intersection between two main forest paths stands the White Temple, a resting place more than 150 years old.
A very popular recreational area is the Mühltal/Mill Valley in the east of the Langen District. It derives its name from the fact that the Sterzbach that has its source there used to power six mills. One of them, the “Merzenmühle”, is today a restaurant. The best opportunities to stopping for refreshments – also in the open air – are to be found in the neighbouring “Scheuer im Mühltal” and another guesthouse in the vicinity. Another attraction in the Mühl valley is the “Paddelteich”, picturesquely embedded in the woodland and meadow landscape.
Tourist destinations such as Odenwald and Bergstraße, Taunus, Rheingau and Spessart as well as the major cities of Frankfurt, Mainz, Wiesbaden, Offenbach and Darmstadt can all be reached quickly and easily from Langen.
Schloss Wolfsgarten (Residence)
Schloss Wolfsgarten (www.schloss-wolfsgarten.de) and its park are located in the city forest to the west of Langen. This magnificent estate has been the residence of Landgrave Moritz von Hessen since 1997. Wolfsgarten was built as a hunting lodge between 1721 and 1724.
The glorious castle park, 57 hectares in area (only open on special occasions) is famed for its gigantic rhododendron bushes and large numbers of rare, exotic trees. Visitors stumble time and time again over sculptures and smaller building works such as the bridge over the fish pond, the Bonifatius Chapel and the tea house hidden in the woodland. The Little Princess’ House, a playhouse built by the famous Art Nouveau architect Joseph Maria Olbrich in 1902 for Princess Elisabeth, who died at an early age, is one of its main attractions.
The park landscape is a successful composition of deciduous and coniferous trees, natural meadows, flowers, shrubs, snug little corners in which to linger a while, historic buildings and sculptures that offer continuously changing views of broad paths, fountains and the pond with its aquatic plants and frogs. Among the sights are also an ancient oak tree and a Californian giant redwood. And anyone stepping into the inside the residence has the feeling that time has stood still.