The right of public access
Nature is open and accessible to all. This means that you are allowed to be in nature if you are considerate and do not disturb or destroy it.
You can walk, run, cycle, ride a horse, ski or otherwise spend time in nature as long as you do not damage crops, forests or other sensitive vegetation.
Respect the privacy of homeowners, do not stay on or cross private property without asking permission.
It is permitted to pitch a tent for one or a few days on land not used for agriculture and away from a dwelling. The closer you are to inhabited houses and the more likely you are to disturb someone, the more reason to ask the landowner for permission. Camping in large groups with several tents always requires the landowner's permission. The need for consideration is even greater in the case of free camping with a caravan or motorhome.
In nature reserves and national parks, special rules generally apply to camping.
Campfires are almost a must for outdoor activities and it is usually allowed to build a fire under safe conditions. But every year, large amounts of forest are burnt through carelessness with campfires. This includes choosing a suitable location for the campfire and putting the fire out properly before leaving the site. In dry weather, there is often a fire ban and all open fires are forbidden, even in prepared fireplaces.
Never light fires directly on rock piles, as they crack and leave unsightly wounds that never heal.
All outdoor littering is prohibited. Glass, cans and capsules can harm both humans and animals, and plastic bags can cause great suffering if ingested by animals. If you have been camping or having a picnic, you are responsible for cleaning up after yourself.
From 1 March to 20 August, dogs are not allowed to run loose in forests and fields. This is when wildlife is at its most sensitive and even the most peaceful little pet dog can cause great harm by its mere presence. Even at other times of the year, you must keep your dog under such supervision that it cannot harm or disturb wildlife. Special rules on dog-keeping often apply to bathing areas and similar areas. Leashes are compulsory in almost all nature reserves and similar areas.
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