Luesswald Forest, a primeval forest in Suedheide


    Luesswald Forest - a primeval forest in Suedheide Nature Park


    Luesswald Forest east of Unterl uess  measures approximately 7,500 hectares and  is one of the largest contiguous forest areas in Germany. Ancient forest structures have survived the centuries here.


    Luesswald - a royal forest


    The forest was here even at the end of the heathland farming era, when the heathlands in the area reached to the horizon. The area of ​​the Luesswald Forest was mentioned as an imperial reserve in the first half of the 13th century, and is even extensively marked on the map of the Elector of Hanover’s topographic survey of 1777 as "Royal Forest".


    Habitat for animals and plants


    These old, extensive forests are very valuable. They offer habitats to many animals and plants. The red deer as the largest indigenous wild species is just as much at home here as rare and susceptible species such as the black stork - even the pygmy owl lives in the forests of Luess.


    The forest areas are very rich in structure: in some places you can find over 100-year-old Douglas firs, beeches, oaks and spruces, all of which are of very special value for nature. The large black woodpecker, for example, requires thick beech trunks for its hollows and the rare stag beetle needs old oak trees as a habitat.


    Nearby, young trees grow from the seeds of the old trees - the natural regeneration of the forest is fully functional and ensures a mixed age structure.


    A forest meadow at the edge of the trail is used by game to search for food, and a dense young beech forest is followed by an over 180-year-old oak forest. The Luessberg is one of the largest elevations in the area: it rises 130 metres above sea level and features a memorial stone commemorating the great hurricane of November 12, 1972, which at the time cut large wounds into the stock of Luesswald Forest.


    Th e  hiking trails in L uess wald forest take the hiker to a natural forest reserve: all forestry activity in this section of the forest ceased back in 1973. The forest is left to itself. Although there is a general ban on access, you can still see the special charm of this forest from the path.


    The natural forest reserve enables us to observe the natural processes that take place in nature and also teaches professionals a great deal about forest life. Over time, a particularly high structural diversity has developed here that is of great value to animal and plant species with special demands on their habitat. Trees of all ages are characteristic of a natural forest as in Luess: the trees are allowed to live until they die of natural causes. Young trees mature in the shelter of the old ones. When a large tree falls, it creates new open spaces: at first sunny glades where forest lizards feel at home and stags and deer find food; later on, the spaces are inhabited by young trees. Dead wood is also very important - numerous animal species depend on it, and rotten wood often forms the seed bed for a later generation of wood.


    Luesswald Forest reveals many a woodland secret to the attentive observer.


    The following round trips lead through the Luesswald area:


    • "The jungle in Luess"

    • A forest adventure trail

    • Themed bicycle tour: "Forest - as far as the eye can see"


    Further information can be found in the attachment below.



    You can reach Luesswald Forest from the "Luesswald" car park. From there, start hiking or cycling through the Luesswald woodlands, where the natural forest reserve is also located. Detailed information about the tours can be found below in the section "This may interest you".

    The car park "Luesswald" is located on the L 280 coming from Unterluess in the direction of Weyhausen, about 1 km from Unterluess on the left side.

    Coordinates: N52.828137 E10.313451

    29345 Unterlüß

    Tourist Information Gemeinde Südheide 05052 6574
    Tourist Information Gemeinde Südheide 05052 6549