German Wine Route Hiking Trail
Heading from the House of the German Wine Route in Bockenheim (near Worms) to the German Wine Gate in Schweigen-Rechtenbach, the German Wine Route Hiking Trail passes through open, gently undulating wine-growing countryside. The neatly pruned rows of vines, idyllic tree-lined avenues, as well as charming villages nestling amidst the fields, cannot fail to make every hiker's heart beat a little faster. A wealth of things to see and do from different eras and famous wine-growing villages encourage visitors to stop off and linger awhile.
The tour starts at the architecturally striking House of the German Wine Route, the geographical start of the oldest wine touristic route in Germany. You quickly leave the built-up area behind and dip into the sunny sea of Palatinate vineyards. Past Grünstadt the trail takes us to Neuleiningen. From Neuleinigen Castle, you can enjoy a spectacular view of the Rhine Plateau.
From the village we walk down to the valley, through Bobenheim am Berg, Weisenheim am Berg and Leistadt into the attractive spa town of Bad Dürkheim, with the largest wine barrel in the world and the second longest graduation tower in Germany.
The trail continues through Wachenheim (worth seeing: Wachtenburg castle ruin with another spectacular view), past Deidesheim and through the romantic wine villages of Königsbach, Gimmeldingen and Haardt to Neustadt. Worth a detour off route is a visit up to Hambacher Schloss, the birthplace of German democracy.
From Neustadt the trail takes us to the romantic wine village of St. Martin. Thereafter, the route rises steeply towards Kropsburg for a short time. Past Villa Ludwigshöhe, the former summer residence of King Louis I of Bavaria, we walk through the wine villages of Weyher, Burrweiler with its lovely St. Anna Chaple, Gleisweiler, Frankweiler into Siebeldingen.
The German Wine Route Hiking Trail (Wanderweg Deutsche Weinstraße) continues past Birkweiler and Ranschbach, through Eschbach (don't miss Madenburg Castle , one of the largest and oldest castles in the Palatinate) into Klingenmünster.
We walk through alleys of the picturesques villages of Gleiszellen and Gleishornbach past Pleisweiler to the spa town of Bad Bergzabern. Stroll around the winding streets of the historical town centre and relax in the idyllic park and the South Palatinate thermal springs.
Now only a short hike through sun-drenched vineyards separates us from the end destination of our hike, the famous German Wine Gate in Schweigen-Rechtenbach.
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