Hiking in spring: tour tips from the Fichtelgebirge to the Rhön – 10 of the most beautiful hiking paths in Franconia, Germany

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Hiking in Spring in Germany is perfect! The landscape in southern Germany has a lot to offer: white mountain peaks contrast with green meadows, colorful spring flowers and blossoming trees. Below are the most beautiful hiking paths in Franconia!

Hiking in Soring in Germany: Franconia offers a lot! The Frankenweg, a continuous hiking trail from the northern edge of the Franconian Forest to Harburg near Nördlingen, was recently marked. Well-known hiking areas are the Franconian Forest, the Fichtelgebirge, the Franconian Jura and its northern part, Franconian Switzerland, the Altmühltal, the Haßberge, the Steigerwald with its Keltenweg, the Spessart and parts of the Rhön. If you live in Bavaria, you don’t have to ask yourself this question: are there hiking trails near me? Below are 10 of the most beautiful hiking paths in Franconia.

Where is Franconia? Franconia is located in southern Germany and the region represents three administrative districts of Middle Franconia, Upper Franconia and Lower Franconia.  It essentially includes parts of the federal states of Bavaria, Thuringia and Baden-Württemberg. The three largest cities in Franconia are currently Nuremberg, Würzburg and Heilbronn.

Info on hiking in Spring: The hiking trails described below, which are mostly circular routes, can be easily modified in their design. Numerous information boards and signposts ensure a relaxed excursion with lots of information about the regions. For alternative route planning and dining options, it is worth taking a look at the website for the hiking region described.

Hiking in Spring: The most beautiful spring hikes in Upper Franconia

1. Franconian Forest: “The Dörnach Climb”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: around 2.5 hours
  • Length: about 7.6 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 350 meters
  • Difficulty level: medium
  • Internet: Franconian Forest

Deep forests, bright clearings, plateaus with surprising views: Hiking in the Franconian Forest opens up unexpected horizons for the eyes and soul. 

The starting point is the Leutnitztal hiking car park at the western entrance to Wallenfels.

Then follow the “Dörnach-Steig” alternating between forest and meadow on natural paths up to the “Hergottswinkel” hiker’s hut. On the ridges, you can enjoy the wonderful views of the surrounding mountains, the valley of the Wilden Rodach, and across to the Leutnitztal. 

The valley of the Wilden Rodach also opens up to the view in the tranquil district of Dörnach.  

Did you know?

Franconia is beer country! Most of the breweries in Bavaria are in Franconia. Numerous so-called beer hiking trails bear witness to this special feature. The good Franconian cuisine and Franconian wine also invite you to linger and enjoy.

2. Fichtelgebirge: “The Thiesenring” 

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: around 4.2 hours
  • Length: about 12 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 516 meters
  • Difficulty level: Easy
  • Internet: Fichtel Mountains

The Thiesenring is one of the major hiking trails around Bad Berneck and one of the most beautiful in northern Bavaria. The starting point is the Anger car park in Bad Berneck.  It is a very variable circular route and can be extended in many ways.

The hiking trail impresses with a large number of vantage points, castles, mines and old trade routes. True natural beauties, such as the Thiesenfels or the Ölschnitztal and the constant change between forest and clearing as well as mountain and valley make the Thiesenring a wonderful excursion in spring.

Did you know that the Bavarian and Franconian dialects are different?

Bavarian: This dialect is internationally one of the best-known German dialects. In numerous variants, Bavarian is spoken in the Free State of Bavaria both in the city and in the country.

Franconian: This dialect is often confused with Bavarian, but Franconian is an independent dialect. There are also numerous variations of Franconian in Lower, Middle and Upper Franconia.

3. Franconian Switzerland: “To the Felsendorf and Felsentor”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: around 4.5 hours
  • Length: about 13 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 178 meters
  • Difficulty level: medium
  • Internet: Franconian Switzerland 

With the diverse hiking trails in Franconian Switzerland, it is impossible to choose the most beautiful route. A very relaxing and varied circular route leads through bizarre rock formations that are so typical of Franconian Switzerland. The path offers numerous opportunities to marvel and explore – for the whole family. A possible starting point is the parking lot at the “Haus des Gastes” in Gößweinstein.

The path continues through the rock village of Tüchersfeld, Hühnerloh, Sachsendorf, and the Heide state forest. Numerous information signs mark the route. There are plenty of places to rest to warm up and recharge your batteries.


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Hiking in Spring: The most beautiful spring hikes in Middle Franconia 

4. Altmühltal: “The Roman fort path”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: about 5 hours
  • Length: about 17 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 510
  • Difficulty level: medium
  • Internet: Altmühltal

From the guest car park in Walting, it first goes a bit in the direction of Inching, before the route branches off to the right and leads up the hill. There, hikers come across the “wild boar trail” that meanders down into the valley. A forest path takes you to the Mammoth Cave, where numerous Ice Age animal skeletons were discovered.

The eponymous mammoth can be seen today in the Eichstätt Museum for Prehistory and Early History on the Willibaldsburg. We continue to the Altmühltal. The route leads over mountains and valleys to wonderful views – and opens an exciting chapter of Roman history. 

5. Taubertal: Quality hiking trail – “Romantic torrent valley”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: around 4.5 hours
  • Length: about 16.5 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 230 meters
  • Difficulty level: Easy
  • Internet: Tauber Valley

From the church in the center of Boxtal, the ascent follows in a westerly direction through meadow orchards to the edge of the forest. Passing the natural monument and geotope “Hohe Steine” and the “Hoi Hopp Stein” you continue through an idyllic high forest to the “Fichtenfeldhütte” with a rest area and on to Rauenberg.

Via the former Wessentaler Kirchweg you reach Wessental via beautiful hillside meadows. From Wessental there is an ascent in a northerly direction past the “Dühmig memorial stone” to the “Diana” hunting lodge and then back down to Boxtal.

6. Nürnberger Land: Tour22 – “1000 meters of altitude circular hiking trail / Nordkette”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: around 3.5 hours
  • Length: about 9.7 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 435 meters
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Internet: Nuremberg Land

The Nordkette of the 1000 meter circular hiking trail proves to be a varied summit tour. It takes you to some of the roofs of the Frankenalb and to striking vantage points with wonderful views of the Nuremberg region.

On the demanding route with some steep climbs and steep descents, the hike is rewarded with impressive views. The well-signposted tour starts in Pommelsbrunn, at the “Holz Pirner” car park.

Hiking in Spring: The most beautiful spring hikes in Lower Franconia

7. Haßberge: “Adventure tour – On the old post route”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: about 3 hours
  • Length: about 9.7 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 210 meters
  • Difficulty level: medium
  • Internet: hate mountains

From the starting point at the church in Ebelsbach, the tour first leads out of the village and then directly up into the so-called “Herrenwald” and the ridge of the Haßbergtrauf. After crossing the idyllic deciduous forest, the view of the Steinbach/Schönbach golf course opens up with a great view over the Steigerwald. It then continues along grapevines, whereby the “Holy Lands” – as this area of ​​the Haßberge is called by the locals – can be seen well and the Stachel, the Veitenstein and the Kleine Kufe can also be seen well.

The tour then leads on narrow forest paths to the Steinbach and its associated valley, which the route follows down to the village of Schönbach. The last section leads back to Ebelsbach via the old post route.

8. Rhön: “The Hut Tour”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: about 5 hours
  • Length: approximately 16.1 kilometers
  • Ascent altitude: 570 meters
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Internet: Rhön

The hut tour begins at an altitude of 450 meters above sea level at the information center “Haus der Schwarzen Berge” in Oberbach. Thanks to the “H” symbol, which marks and guides the entire circular route, you can safely leave your cell phone in your pocket.

First it goes up towards the basalt lake. The descent along the culture-landscape hiking trail leads through a varied park landscape, past venerable beeches, the Icelandic horse stud at the brick hut and the rose garden, back to the information center “House of the Black Mountains”. 

9. Franconian Wine Country: “Dream Round Rödelsee”

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: around 2.4 hours
  • Length: about 9 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 309 meters
  • Difficulty level: medium
  • Internet: Franconian wine country

The starting point is the hiking car park on the outskirts of Mönchshöflein, directly in front of the vineyards. Past the “Weintempel” the path leads along the edge of the forest, with a wonderful view of the Main valley. Numerous sights and information boards ensure a varied excursion. Many legends have been entwined around Rödelsee and its Schwanberg for centuries. Much of this is explained at the “Wine & Truth” stations, which accompany the “TraumRunde” through the vineyards to the wine temple.

The demanding ascent to the plateau is rewarded with great views and the unique castle park. During the steep descent, the “terroir f” is passed, a “magical place of Franconian wine”. Numerous inns invite you to warm up and recharge your batteries. 

10. Spessart-Mainland: Through the Buchental 

Hiking in spring
  • Duration: around 2.5 hours
  • Length: about 9.8 kilometers
  • Altitude difference: 130 meters
  • Difficulty level: Easy
  • Internet: Spessart Mainland

A picture book cultural landscape with seven mills and a pilgrimage church stretches between the Franconian plateau and the Main. The culture trail through the Buchental can be started at the information board in Steinfeld am Main. From the church in Steinfeld you pass the historic laundry room in the Steinfeld district of Hausen. This is followed by the “Reußenmühle” station, from where agriculture and landscape conservation are carried out today – so that the view of the valley is preserved. The final station in Steinbach impresses with the ensemble of baroque church and palace complex.


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Tim Gumbert
Tim Gumbert
Tim is the go-to guy when it comes to finding all the gems regarding life as an Expat in Germany. His whole motto is discover Germany on your own and without a roadmap, explore new routes while climbing or mountain biking.

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