Open ministry is legal

Advice on leisure and nature

What should you always keep in mind?

Consent of the owner of the property

According to the Bavarian Nature Conservation Act (BayNatSchG), anyone can enter all parts of the great outdoors free of charge without official approval and without the consent of the landowner or other authorized person (Art. 27 Paragraphs 1 and 2 BayNatSchG). This so-called right of access only applies to activities in the context of traditional forms of leisure activities and sports that serve the enjoyment of nature and relaxation.

The lighting and operation of open fires for grilling, as a campfire or as a traditional fire (mountain fire, Midsummer or Midsummer fire, etc.) in the great outdoors outside of officially designated places is more than just "normal entry" and is therefore not from Right of entry covered. This applies both to open fireplaces (e.g. grills) and to unprotected fire (i.e. fire that is not operated in an open fireplace, but, for example, in a fireplace on the floor or in a floor hollow made for this purpose). The consent of the owner of the property is always required for this - and the consent of the forest owner for the collection of firewood in the forest.

Prohibitions on riverside properties on federal waterways

It is generally forbidden to ignite fires on the federally owned land on the banks of the Main, Main-Danube Canal and Danube federal waterways (Section 2 (1) No. 2 BAVO).

Commitment to protecting nature

The general obligation to protect nature should also be observed when lighting a fire (§ 1 BNatSchG). After that everyone has

  • to contribute to the realization of the goals and principles of nature conservation and landscape management in accordance with its possibilities in responsibility for the natural foundations of life and
  • to behave in such a way that the foundations of life for wild plants and animals living in the wild are preserved as far as possible, are not impaired more than is unavoidable under the circumstances and, if necessary, are restored.

What should you watch out for in protected areas?

A permit from the district administrative authority is generally required to ignite and operate open fires in landscape protection areas.

In principle, however, this is prohibited in

  • National parks,
  • Nature reserves,
  • areas protected as natural monuments,
  • protected landscape elements,
  • legally protected biotopes,
  • Wildlife sanctuaries,
  • protected wildlife and
  • Water protection areas.

Information - also about places that are officially approved for barbecues or other fires - can be obtained from the municipalities and district administrative authorities. See for example:

What should you watch out for when starting a fire?

In general, the following applies: There must be no risk of fire in the area (Section 3 Paragraph 1 Clause 1 VVB). Open fires are generally not permitted if the following distances are observed:

  • at least 100 meters from a forest (Art. 17 para. 1 BayWaldG)
  • at least 100 meters from highly flammable substances (Section 4 Paragraph 1 Sentence 2 VVB)
  • at least five meters from buildings made of flammable materials, measured from the roof overhang (Section 4 Paragraph 1 Sentence 1 No. 1 VVB)
  • at least five meters from other combustible materials (Section 4 Paragraph 1 Sentence 1 No. 3 VVB)

In the case of shorter distances from a forest, a permit from the district administrative authority (Art. 17, Paragraph 1, Art. 39 and 42 BayWaldG), in the case of shorter distances from highly flammable materials, buildings made of combustible materials and other combustible materials, an exception from the municipality (Section 25 VVB) required. The municipalities can issue further regulations for their municipality in individual cases and, if necessary, issue further municipal ordinances (Section 24 Paragraph 1 Clause 1, 2 No. 3 VVB and Section 26 Paragraph 2 VVB). In particular, an obligation to register open fires with the municipality or the integrated control center can be regulated locally.

The following provisions should also be observed when fire is permitted:

  • Only untreated wood may be used as fuel - no waste oils, used tires or plastics (Section 61 (1) No. 2 in conjunction with Section 27 (1) sentence 1 KrW-AbfG)! - be used.
  • The fire is to be kept under constant supervision by a sufficient number of suitable persons appropriate to the circumstances (Section 4 (3) sentence 1 VVB).
  • The fire must be extinguished in strong winds (Section 4 (2) VVB).
  • When leaving, the fire and embers must be extinguished (Section 4 Paragraph 3 Sentence 2 VVB).
  • Remaining fuel - like other waste - must be taken back with you and properly disposed of (Art. 38 Paragraph 1 BayNatSchG; Section 61 Paragraph 1 No. 2 in conjunction with Section 27 Paragraph 1 Sentence 1 KrW-AbfG).

What should you watch out for at events?

Public events are usually to be reported to the municipality in writing at the latest one week in advance or require their permission, unless permission is required under other regulations (Art. 19 LStVG). The obligation to notify exists
  • if the event is intended as an amusement and is suitable for entertaining, amusing, distracting or relaxing the visitors, and
  • Participation is not restricted to a specific group of people who are personally connected to one another through mutual relationships or through relationships with the organizer.

Anyone who violates nature conservation, forestry, hunting, water, waste or fire protection regulations or the obligation to notify at events is acting improperly and can be fined. The legal bases are: Art. 57 Paragraph 1 Nos. 2 to 5 BayNatSchG in conjunction with Section 69 Paragraph 3 No. 5 BNatSchG as well as Art. 57 Paragraph 2 Nos. 2 to 4 and Paragraph 8 BayNatSchG; Art. 46 para. 2 nos. 4 and 5 BayWaldG; Art. 56 Paragraph 1 No. 15 BayJG; § 8 No. 2 BAVO; Section 103 Paragraph 1 No. 7a and 8 WHG; Section 61 (1) No. 2 KrW-AbfG; § 27 VVB; Art. 19 Paragraph 8 No. 1 LStVG.