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Overview map of the Chiemgau
Chiemgau with Chiemsee, seen from the Alps

The Chiemgau is a cultural landscape in south-east Upper Bavaria .


Chiemgau around 1875

The Chiemgau comprises areas of the Traunstein district and the Rosenheim district . It extends around 50 km in north-south and west-east directions around the Chiemsee .

  • The Rupertiwinkel connects to the northeast . The places to the right and left of the Traun are all in Chiemgau.
  • To the southeast of the Bavarian has always been part includes the district of Berchtesgaden to Bad Reichenhall with Schneizlreuth as immediate border village. Inzell is therefore considered the “gateway” of the Chiemgau to the Berchtesgadener Land district.
  • In the south the Chiemgau Alps rise with the state border to Austria .
  • To the west is the Inntal to the Bavarian Oberland the border, the locations of the Inn Valley, the Rosenheim country and Wasserburger country are no longer expected generally to Chiemgau. Exceptions to this are Amerang , which is assigned to both the Chiemgau and the Wasserburger Land , as well as Prutting, Riedering, Söchtenau and Stephanskirchen both belong to the Chiemgau and the "Rosenheimer Land". The same applies to Samerberg, which lies on the border between the Chiemgau and the Inn Valley.
  • In the north, the Chiemgau extends to the community of Schnaitsee and thus to the northern border of the Traunstein district. The Inn-Salzach region borders here.

As defined by the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation , the Chiemgau covers an area of ​​784 km².

Places in the Chiemgau

First of all, the places around the Chiemsee are part of the Chiemgau:

In the southern Chiemgau all places south, southwest and southeast of the Chiemsee up to the Austrian border or up to the Inn valley and up to the Rupertiwinkel:

In the northern Chiemgau all places north, northeast and northwest of the Chiemsee or up to the Inntal or up to the Rupertiwinkel:

Name declaration

Information board on the Munich-Salzburg motorway

The names Chiemgau and Chiemsee are related to the place name Chieming, which is mostly derived from the Old High German personal name " Chiemo " (7th / 8th century).

At the end of the 8th century, the name "Chiemgau" also appears for the first time in documents as "Chimingaoe" and at that time referred to a smaller area around the village of Chieming. The Chiemgau area expanded over the centuries.

It was not until the 11th century that the Chieminggau became known as the Chiemgau .

Natural history and geography

The Ice Age around 15,000 years ago shaped the Chiemgau as a pre-Alpine and moraine landscape. The Chiemgau is a hilly landscape with numerous meadows, forest and moor areas as well as numerous lakes - from the 82 km² Chiemsee to smaller forest lakes. The highest elevations in the Chiemgau reach almost 2000 meters above sea level. d. M.

See also: List of waters in Chiemgau

The Chiemgau comet

According to a controversial theory, a comet exploded over the Chiemgau in the 5th century BC , the fragments of which would have devastated the Chiemgau. This alleged event is called the Chiemgau impact .

Human history

Human traces can be found in the Chiemgau even before the younger Stone Age through the Bronze and Hallstatt Ages to the Iron Age . Even after that, it always remains a settlement area, whether for the Celts or the Romans . The latter can be found mainly on the Alz, which flows from the Chiemsee, and built a crossing for the Roman road from Salzburg to Augsburg there at Seebruck ( Bedaium ), as the Roman Museum Seebruck documents. The Chiemgau was thus on the edge of the Roman province of Noricum , which reached as far as the Inn and to which the province of Raetia joined.

Historically, one speaks of so-called " Chiemgaugrafen " or counts in Chiemgau , especially between the 8th and 11th centuries . For a long time, the Chiemgau was connected to both the Bavarian dukes and the prince archbishops of Salzburg . The former were the sovereigns, the latter were ecclesiastical power and often also local landlords.

Only after secularization in 1803 did the Chiemgau come completely into Bavarian hands .

Cultural history

The Chiemgau is rich in stately mansions due to its numerous hills and its fertile soils.

From an artistic point of view, baroque buildings are particularly well represented in the Chiemgau . B. the monastery church St. Margaretha von Kloster Baumburg or the parish church St. Georg in Ruhpolding.

The Chiemgau is strongly influenced by the economy with wood, iron and salt. A pioneer of mining and metallurgy was Pankraz von Freyberg zu Hohenaschau in the 16th century . The saltworks in Traunstein existed from 1619 to 1912 and exerted great economic and cultural influence on the entire Chiemgau. The same applies to the Maximilianshütte in Bergen, which was operated from 1561 to 1932. In connection with the logging of wood, the Chiemgau is also an old horse breeding land for work horses.

In the northern Chiemgau, the approx. 300 still preserved, mostly 19th century Bundwerkstadel of the Vierseithöfe are characteristic of the rural cultural landscape .

Customs, traditional costumes, theater

In the Chiemgau, customs and traditional costumes are practiced particularly vividly. This is reflected, among other things, in the name of the Chiemgau Alpine Association , in which part of the Chiemgau traditional costume clubs are united . However, most Trachtenvereine of Chiemgau belong to Gauverband I .

The Chiemgauer Volkstheater is known far beyond the borders of Bavaria for its television appearances. In general, the Chiemgau has a large number of farm theaters with a long tradition.


Distinguishing feature for places and geographical conditions

Numerous places have the addition "im Chiemgau" for better differentiation or recognition, e.g. B. Aschau im Chiemgau in contrast to Aschau am Inn , Nussdorf (Chiemgau) in contrast to Nussdorf am Inn . One speaks of the Chiemgau Alps, the Chiemgau Mountains or the Chiemgau Pre-Alps and the Chiemgau Alpine Foreland , furthermore of the Chiemgau Lake District , the Chiemgauer Achental .


The reference to Chiemgau is also emphasized by the noun Chiemgauer , and not only in connection with the regional complementary currency Chiemgauer . This regional currency can be used to pay in parallel to the euro in more than 600 shops in the region. There is also a separate EC card for the Chiemgauer . The accounts are managed by cooperative banks and savings banks in the region (see also Regiogeld ).

In addition, a tourist-commercial-private internet magazine bears the title “Der Chiemgauer”. For numerous trademarks it is enough to just say “Der Chiemgauer” (e.g. “Chiemgauer Dreher” as a folk dance, the “Chiemgauer Hut” as a traditional hat, etc.).

Cultural landscape and tourism

The logo of Chiemgau Tourismus e. V. - Traunstein district
Logo of the Chiemsee-Alpenland Tourismus GmbH & Co.KG - district of Rosenheim

The Chiemgau is a rural and rural cultural landscape, with sights such as Herrenchiemsee Abbey or Herrenchiemsee New Castle on the Herreninsel im Chiemsee, one of the preferred tourist regions in Bavaria and, among other things, one of the largest and best-developed cycling and hiking areas in Germany with offers promotes bike tours that are sporty and that explain regional cultural information.

According to the Bavarian State Office for Statistics , the Chiemgau cultural landscape is divided into the two tourism regions "Chiemsee-Alpenland" and "Chiemsee-Chiemgau" of two districts, which in turn are managed by the two tourism associations "Chiemsee-Alpenland Tourismus GmbH & Co. KG" (tour. Marketing organization des District of Rosenheim ) and “Chiemgau Tourismus e. V. "(tour. Marketing organization of the district of Traunstein , since 2017 with logo and brand " chiemsee chiemgau Bavarian Alps ") can be advertised with their own web presence. They also set up a high ropes course and toboggan runs as further attractions for tourists .

In addition to the more or less pronounced Bavarian dialect of the Rosenheim and Traunstein locals, the Chiemgau costume including lederhosen and the Chiemgau Volkstheater are the region's own cultural trademarks. In this context, the Chiemgau Local Railway, operated as a museum railway, and the Chiemgau School Museum should also be mentioned. From 1922 to 1933 there was a “Free Association of Chiemgauer Künstler e. V. "and the mountain costume preservation association Grabenstätt has" Chiemgauer "as the club name. The Zirmstiftung Schusterhof has been based in Bergen / Chiemgau since 2008. The Zirmstiftung organizes traditional costume exhibitions of Gauverband I and a historical nativity scene at the newly built Schusterhof , the exhibits of which are also shown in traveling exhibitions at other locations. The purpose of the foundation is to preserve Bavarian culture and traditions.

Popular filming location

Not least because of these scenic aspects, the Chiemgau is a popular location for films and TV series, including:

Winter sports center

The Chiemgau is also known as a winter sports center, especially due to the ice rink in Inzell ("Ice Skating Mecca"), the biathlon world championship and world cup courses in Ruhpolding. But the Chiemgau has also produced well-known athletes in other areas of winter sports, especially Nordic and Alpine skiing . Winter sports enthusiasts train in the Federal Police Sports School in Bad Endorf , who receive training in the police force at the same time.

Differentiator for groups and institutions

In addition, the Chiemgau is so significant as a spatial designation that, among others, the following groups have organized themselves within it or institutions have named themselves after it:

  • Associations and clubs:
    • the “Chiemgau Alpine Association for Costume and Customs” e. V. “, merger of the Chiemgau traditional costume clubs
    • the Chiemgau Ski Association
    • the association “ Astronomie im Chiemgau e. V. "
    • the association “ Gnadenhof Chiemgau e. V. "
    • the association “Chiemgau Lakers e. V. “, American Football Traunstein
    • the sports club SB Chiemgau Traunstein
    • the Greenpeace group Chiemgau
    • the CVJM guest house Chiemgau
    • the “Chiemgauer e. V. “, sponsoring association of the Chiemgau regional money
    • the “Chiemgau Impakt e. V. “, Association for the Promotion of Research into the Southeast Bavarian Meteorite Crater Streufeld e. V.
    • the "Chiemgau Impact Research Team (CIRT)"
    • the Chiemgau cave bears
    • the Chiemgau hunting horn blowers
    • the Chiemgauer Schrammeln
    • the district associations of Inn-Chiemgau (district of Rosenheim) and Chiem-Rupertigau (districts of Berchtesgadener Land and Traunstein) of the Upper and Lower Bavaria Music Association
    • Slow Food Chiemgau-Rosenheimer Land
    • Schützengau Chiemgau-Prien


Many cultural, sporting, social and economic events are called "Chiemgauer", e.g. B .:

Culinary specialties from the Chiemgau

Numerous culinary specialties are named after this region:

People in the Chiemgau

For other well-known sons and daughters or residents of the Chiemgau see category: Person (Chiemgau)


  • Peter Pfarl, Toni Anzenberger: Chiemgau and Rupertiwinkel. About royal castles, air painters and magic mountains. Verlag Anton Pustet, Salzburg 2016, ISBN 978-3-7025-0821-0 .

Individual evidence

  1. Christina Indinger: Future prospects of a tourist sub-destination : Mitteilungen der Fränkische Geographische Gesellschaft Vol. 56, 2009, pp. 285–302, pp. 286 and 291, PDF file, online at , accessed September 9 2018.
  2. Local working group Chiemgauer Alpen: Local Development Strategy LES 2014–2020 , p. 22, PDF file, online at , accessed September 9, 2018.
  3. Chiemgau Tourismus e. V: Chiemgau - Kultur & Genuss , p. 32, PDF file, online at , accessed September 9, 2018.
  4. The term cultural landscape is brought differently, the Bavarian State Office for the Environment lists the Chiemgau as a "cultural landscape unit" and describes smaller areas within it as a "cultural landscape" (see 59 Chiemgau (2013) , in the draft of a cultural landscape structure of Bavaria as a contribution to biodiversity , PDF file, online at )
  5. BfN landscape profile 3801 Chiemgau
  6. See already Gotthard Heinrich, Ueber die Ortnames in Oberbayern , 1849, p. 20
  7. Keinz Friedrich: Indiculus Arnonis and Breves Notitiae Salzburgenses - reissued and provided with explanations based on the known and previously unused manuscripts, Munich 1869, online
  8. Dotter, Franz / Dotter, Margit: The Inn and its tributaries, Stuttgart 1987
  9. Bavarian State Office for Statistics : Tourism regions in Bavaria , PDF file, status: January 1, 2019, online at .
  10. ^ Website of the "Chiemsee-Alpenland Tourismus GmbH & Co. KG"
  11. New logo for the tourism association , press release from May 12, 2017, online at .

Web links

Commons : Chiemgau  - Collection of images, videos and audio files