View of the landscape along the Hiwweltour Bismarck Tower
Dominik Ketz

Germany: Color in everyday life 

Simone Sever

Whether a romantic walk with beautiful views, traversing the heathland or looking across the Rhineland landscapes, the federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate can be colorful and castle, culture and art, romantic and imposing. funkyGERMANY presents five excursion destinations that are worth going out the door for. 

Lorelei in view 

The Dream Loop Middle Rhine lies in the middle of a scenic dreamscape, the Unesco World Heritage Site of the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, boasting views of the Loreley rock, castles, vineyards and even ships that pull through the imposing river valley, which is far from straightened here.

View of the Loreley rock from Maria Ruh
Dominik Ketz

If you want to experience this colorfully disguised natural and cultural landscape, the best thing to do is lace up your hiking boots for a foray through the Dream Loop Middle Rhine. 93 experience points over 14.6 kilometers in length spoil you on one of the most beautiful sections of the Middle Rhine Valley between St. Goar and Oberwesel. The path is also worthwhile for connoisseurs: no fewer than nine restaurants and a large number of huts, rest areas and picnic areas invite you to linger for a while. 

Dream path Moselle dream

Hour-long or even day-long hikes are not suitable for everyone. On the other hand, everyone loves beautiful views. The ideal combination of a short but eventful hiking route can be found in the dreamy Moselle trail near Winningen: a tour of just 3.4 kilometers that offers an amazing number of experiences over a short distance. Sometimes, small paths meander along old vineyard walls, then the ascent to the Domgartenhütte follows in steep serpentines, which requires a bit of surefootedness as well as fitness. Anyone who has managed this will be rewarded with a wonderful view over the vineyard slopes and the idyllic Moselle valley.

View of Winningen and the vineyards
Klaus Brost

The rest is pleasure hiking. Together with the Moselsteig and Rheinburgenweg, the dream path leads between meadows and the edge of a slope. The view of the valley from one of the grassy passages is particularly beautiful, before it then goes downhill and over a short final climb back to the car park at the Weilsbornquelle.

The harsh charm of the heath 

The juniper heath in the Eifel has its very own charm and is an open landscape of austere beauty, which is characterized by evergreen juniper bushes. The Traumpfad Wacholderweg leads through one of the most attractive heathland landscapes in the Eifel, very close to Langscheid. At 8.6 kilometers, the varied route is an experience in every season: even in the winter months, when the heath is covered with snow and there is only sparse vegetation. From mid-August, when the heathland is in bloom, things get colorful. Yellow and violet tones then determine the landscape. What a sight!

Italy in Rheinhessen

“Hiwwel” is what the hills in Rheinhessen are called. They are an ideal hiking area with their enchanting mixture of forests, vineyards, pastures and orchards. There are nine “Hiwwelttouren” in total, with the Hiwweltour Aulheimer Tal being one of the most attractive routes. At 13 kilometers, it is also the longest. And with a large number of adventure points, it is ideal for a whole day of hiking. Along the way are the wine town of Flonheim, the historic Geistermühle and the Aulheimer Tal, which gives the route its name. In terms of climate, the valley that gives it its name is a whole other world, primarily because it so closely resembles a steppe – plants such as spurge or thyme thrive here, which tend to have a hard time in the rest of Rheinhessen.

The andesite quarries at the Aulheimer Graben are of volcanic origin. From there, the path leads through meadows and vineyards up to the Adelberg, where a special building awaits hikers: the Flonheim Trullo. Trulli homes are small round houses with a pitched roof; they are actually only known to exist in Apulia in southern Italy. The Rhenish-Hessian variant was built in 1756 – possibly by Italian guest workers who worked in the quarries around Flonheim. The hiking trail continues through vineyard landscapes with unspoiled hedges, waving grass and fantastic views of the Rhenish-Hessian hill countryside. Towards the end of the tour, you pass old abandoned sandstone quarries. Flonheim sandstone was once a popular building material and was even used for the Cologne Cathedral.

Trullo in Flonheim, Rhineland-Palatinate
Patrik Dietrich/

Art in castle building 

A fairytale landscape with a beautiful mixture of history, culture and nature is offered by the roughly eight-kilometre-long, low-gradient hiking trail that leads directly past the Baldenau castle ruins. Baldenau Castle is located in a quiet hollow near Morbach. A romantic building and a rarity in the surrounding area, it is after all the only moated castle in the Hunsrück.

Baldenau Castle near Mosbach, one of the excursion destinations in Rhineland-Palatinate

The Baldenau was built in the 14th century by the famous Bishop, Balduin of Luxembourg, Elector and Archbishop of Trier. Incidentally, a life-size wooden sculpture of the ruler is right next to the ruins: a sawn work of art from the workshop of artist, Jonas Herrmann from Allenbach. Herrmann has created a large number of such wooden figures along the LandZeitTour. So, keep your eyes open on the hiking tour!