The 4th day of our European vacation started with grey skies and a light rain which was only to get strength for the first half of the day. We had ambitious plans for that day, which was planned to end in the French city of Metz, the capital of the Lorraine, at the end of the longest driving segment of the whole trip. The first stop of the day was however planned to happen in Gutach (B), a few kilometers from Triberg (A), where we were going to visit the Black Forest Open Air Museum (Schwarzwalder Freilichtmuseum Vogstbauernhof).

House of the Black Forest Clocks

Before getting to Gutach we stopped on the road to take pictures of a picturesque building hosting a Black Forest clocks shop belonging to the House of the Black Forest Clocks chain.

farm house in the Black Forest Open Air Museum

Founded in 1964 the museum is an ethnographic open air museum dedicated to the life, economy, inhabitants and traditions of the Black Forest area, similar to the Skansen in Stockholm or to Muzeul Satului in Bucharest. Here also houses from different places of the Black Forest dating from various periods in the past 400 years were dismounted and rebuilt in an environment that tries to replicate as well as possible their original settings.


There are about 20 structures in the complex, most of them rich farms of different profiles combined with the habitations. Some of the interiors are simple, some are more sophisticated, with utilitarian and decorative objects, sometimes a combination of both, most of them made of wood.

wooden sculptures

Wooden sculptures some of them of religious inspiration were created and proudly displayed in front of the houses in this mostly Catholic region.

garden woodwork

Same for the garden sculptures, also made traditionally of wood which became a real tradition in the whole German speaking area of Western Europe.

roadside altar

In some cases stone carving was used alternatively with wood carving and some times in combination. See this beautiful roadside altar with an expressive statue of Jesus inside the upper box on the pole.

dairy farm

The beautiful building above is a dairy farm. The building uses the hilly relief to allow direct access to the upper floor, where are located the stables, while the lodgings are at the ground. Flowers decorate the balconies – it’s a tradition in the villages of the area, similar to the one that we saw also in Austria.

watermill engine

There are many other interesting items to discover in the museum , related to the crafts and rural technology of the area -among which a couple of watermills. A chapel, storehouses, a herb garden among other complete a diverse and interesting presentation that is definitely worth a stop.