Germany’s highlight: best hiking trails near the KMC

Three people on hiking trail
Three people on hiking trail

Germany’s highlight: best hiking trails near the KMC

by Amanda Palumbo
Stripes Europe

There is nothing like a stroll or a brisk hike in the woods to clear the mind and recharge the soul. The word ‘hiking’ might bring up visions of overly stuffed backpacks, walking for hours on end and fighting every bug imaginable. That is partly true but you don’t have to be the die-hard expert to enjoy some of Germany’s beautiful trails. Here are some of our favorites.

Easy & Family Friendly

Trail: Bärenlochweiher - Heidenfelsen Loop

Location: Kindsbach

Length: 2.49 miles

Elevation: 300 feet

This short and easy trail is great for families. At the start of the trail, you can gaze upon Bärenlochweiher, which translates to “Bear Hole Pond.” Along the way, you’ll find the Pagans Stone, a Roman holy spring dating back to the 2nd century. Legend has it the water could treat certain eye ailments. The trail eventually circles back to the pond, complete with a swimming area and beer garden.

Trail: Karlstal Gorge - Pavilion Loop at Klugsche Mill

Location: Trippstadt

Length: 1.89 miles

Elevation: 125 feet

The Karlstal Gorge in Trippstadt is one of the most popular and beautiful sights in the Palatinate Forest. There are a number of trails that will take you to the gorge but the one that starts at the restaurant, Klugsche Mill, is an easy one for families to follow along. This trail is gorgeous in every season, but it is truly magical in the fall as the leaves start to turn.


Trail: Großer Mannstein - Kaisertempel Loop

Location: Eppstein

Length: 9.78 miles

Elevation: 1,650 feet

Großer Mannstein is a breathtaking lookout point where hikers can see as far as Frankfurt. Three miles in, you’ll stumble upon the Bahai Tempel, featuring an impressive dome with intricate architecture. After trekking seven-and-a-half miles, you’ll reach the lookout point. It’s a great spot to take a break, have a snack and enjoy the view. This trail eventually leads to Kaisertempel. This building was once a temple for the founders of the German Reich but now serves as an adorable little restaurant. It also has a fantastic viewpoint over the villages.

Trail: Bockfesenhütte - Vier Burgen Tour Loop

Location: Neckargemünd

Length: 8.95 miles

Elevation: 1,625 feet

This trail has everything: fantastic lookout points, a river and four castles. Just under six miles in, is an additional trail, 4-Burgen Tour. This trail winds through four castle ruins along the German-French border. In fact, you’ll be crossing the border a few times on this trail. Some of the castles do have an admission to tour but it’s well worth the needed break.


Trail: Bärenhöhle - Bruderfelsen Loop from Haupstraße

Location: Rodalben

Length: 11.1 miles

Elevation: 1,425 feet

While a long trail, this one has tons of gems along the way. Bärenhöhle, which translates to “bear cave” is just one-and-a-half miles in. This is just the start of what will be a long series of stunning rock formations. The halfway point is Alte Burg. It’s hard to tell but it’s the ruins of an old Celtic castle made of red sandstone. It also provides a great view of the village.

Trail: Strahlenburg - Schauenburg Loop from Dossenheim Süd

Location: Dossenheim

Length: 9.53 miles

Elevation: 1,975

Panoramic views, castle ruins and vineyards make this long and difficult trail a delight. It takes you through an old quarry with steep climbs but rewarding views. This will no doubt take care of leg day for the next month. One of the ruins along the way has a restaurant and a good opportunity to take a rest and grab a beer.

Good to Know

Download the hiking app, “Komoot,” to help you pick out new trails, guide you along the way and even has tips and pictures from other hikers on the trail.

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