The Kehlsteinhaus, in English-speaking countries known as the “Eagles Nest”, was built for Adolf Hitler for his 50th birthday. It is an architectural master piece: the building on a rock on top of the mountain, a road cut into the mountain ending in front of a tunnel leading to a golden brass elevator through which one can reach the summit. Truly impressive and this is what it was supposed to be: to impress and dazzle people. This day trip is part of the 9-DAY HISTORY RAIL TOUR: “FASCINATION AND TERROR” – RISE AND FALL OF THE THIRD REICH.
How to get there
The Eagles Nest is situated on top of the Obersalzberg, where also the “Berghof”, formerly Hitler’s home and southern headquarters, was located. The building towering on the mountain peak 6.017 ft. above sea level remained unscathed during the war and today serves as a mountain restaurant. Eagles Nest is closed during winter; it opens mid-May and closes at the end October. If you a travel by car you may drive up to the parking lot “Dokumentationszentrum Obersalzberg” (Documentation Center Obersalzberg) from where you can take a two hour hike up to the Eagles Nest or you take a bus and the elevator.
The documentation center is about 10 driving minutes from Berchtesgaden, from Munich you need about two hours, from Salzburg about 45 minutes, from Garmisch-Partenkirchen or Innsbruck about 2.5 hours to get there. Please note: when you pick up the ticket to go up the Obersalzberg you will have to let the person at the ticket counter know when you plan to go down again since they will schedule a time for taking the elevator and bus down again.
The easiest way to visit the Eagles Nest is by taking a guided tour from Salzburg. You will be picked up from your hotel and you will take a modern tour bus to the “Dokumentationszentrum Obersalzberg” (Documentation Center Obersalzberg) from where busses take you to the elevator which takes you to the peak of the mountain.
Kehlsteinhaus / Eagles Nest
When you exit the elevator you are already inside of the Kehlsteinhaus which today is a restaurant. On the picture below you see the fireplace which is located in one of the dining rooms – made out of red marble – which was a present from Italian Dictator Benito Mussolini. Also you see the wooden paneled tea room with great views over the mountain area. Outside of the building you will find displays with information about the history of the building and pictures.
Hike on top of the Mountain
If the weather is nice you may want to take a short hike on the mountain which offers great mountain views as well as a nice view of the Koenigssee.
If you want to explore the area by hiking on top of the mountain you need about 1.5 hour to enjoy the area. There are benches to relax and enjoy the great views and displays with information about the peaks surrounding Eagles Nest.
When you are back at the Documentation Center you may take a short walk (passing the glazed entrance to the bunker) to the area where the “Berghof” was situated. The Berghof is considered Adolf Hitler´s home since he spend more time there than anywhere else during the war. It was damaged by British bombs in April 1945 and demolished in 1952 by the State of Bavaria. Only the top of a retaining wall can still be seen, trees have overgrown the site. From where the large terrace used to be you have a nice view into the valley and you also see the hill where the Teahouse used to be. Hitler almost every day after lunch took a walk from the Berghof to the Teahouse.