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The merriment goes on until midnight, though most tourists are gone by 10pm, when Trachten-dressed locals begin to gather at the Stammtisch.

I once asked an employee of the Garmisch-Partenkirchen tourist office if there were other restaurants in the area like the Fraundorfer. Her immediate reply: "There is only one Fraundorfer, and there every night is a party."

Though the restaurant is the main attraction, the Fraundorfer's 22 unpretentious Bavarian country-style rooms offer excellent value in the heart of Partenkirchen, the more authentic of the two towns. We prefer those in the guesthouse behind the main building.

Daily Rates: Singles €40-60, doubles €80-90

Contact: Gasthof Fraundorfer Ludwigstrasse 24, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, D-82467, telephone +49/08821/92 70

Rating: Quality 11/20, Value 16/20

Restaurant Rating: Quality 14/20, Value 17/20