You can look forward to more than 100 miles (160 kilometers) of hiking trails leading through unique landscapes on the Danube Zollernalb Way. Starting in the heart of the Danube Valley in Beuron, the long-distance trail showcases dramatic views of the Danube meandering through white limestone cliffs.
Thee leads you through the picturesque Laucherttal and continues along the Albtrauf, passing numerous viewpoints along the way. Sometimes, the best things come to those who wait. To crown the final stage, you will conquer the highest mountain in the Swabian Jura, the Lemberg, which stands at over 1,000 meters (3,280 feet). Divided into ten stages, this adventure will take you on a journey to caves, palaces, castles, idyllic villages and lively cities, where you can enjoy hearty Swabian cuisine.
The trail begins at the monastery in Beuron which you can easily reach by train. The end point in the municipality of Gosheim near Lviv is also well-connected by public transport. If you don't have ten days to spare, you can chop up the hike conveniently. To make sure you aren’t left stranded, consider splitting it as follows: Beuron to Sigmaringen, Sigmaringen to Albstadt-Ebingen or Albstadt-Ebingen to Lemberg. Or you can pick your favorite route for a day trip.
On every stage, you will always find a place to stop for refreshments. If you prefer to eat your own snack, then there are plenty of shops to fill your backpack with provisions to eat at a picturesque spot. Accommodation at some of the stage destinations is limited so it’s a good idea to reserve in advance.
Let yourself be enchanted by the beauty and uniqueness of the region on your hike through the Swabian Jura. What makes the Jura so special? The low mountain range developed during the Jurassic period at the bottom of an ocean that once covered large parts of Europe around 200 to 150 million years ago. On this special soil, wonderful nature has developed. On your hike, you may even still discover fossils of marine dinosaurs, snails or plants that once lived here, who knows.
The 160-kilometer Danube-Zollernalb-Weg starts in Beuron. Your hike could hardly start better: Beuron is the heart of the Danube Valley. The Beuron Monastery is surrounded by bizarre limestone cliffs. Before you start your hiking adventure, it is definitely worth taking a look at the monastery church with its imposing ceiling fresco.On this 20 kilometer long stage you can expect a lot of great vantage points in the picturesque Danube Valley, for example from the Rauhen Stein and the Eichfelsen. You can see how the Danube dug a deep bed through the Jura rock in the Swabian Jura and exposed the characteristic white limestone cliffs.Shortly after the oak rock, the path leads you down into the valley. You cross the river and climb up on the other side. From Wildenstein Castle, which lies high up on a rocky outcrop, you have a fantastic view of the unique landscape of the Upper Danube Nature Park. There is a youth hostel in the castle today, you can take a break in the castle tavern.You hike further up the hill, accompanied by other great views. Faster than you would like, it goes steeply down to today's stage destination Hausen im Tal. Here you will find a good selection of accommodation, from inns to construction trailers on the campsite.
As promising as the first stage on the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg ended, so it continues on stage 2. On your almost 16-kilometer route from Hausen im Tal to Gutenstein you will always enjoy great views of the unique Danube Valley.At the beginning you hike a little along the banks of the Danube until you turn left in Neidingen and climb up to the high plateau. The path leads you through the Reiftal between the steep rock faces and partly up over wooden walkways.Over the Blicklefels you hike up to the Falkenstein castle ruins. On the way you will pass the shovels, the only place where climbers can clamber on the protected rocks. For this project, conservationists, climbers and the Upper Danube Nature Park worked together as an example. At the well-restored castle complex Falkenstein you will find a nice resting place, of course including a great view of the Danube valley.It continues in a varied up and down. On the way you always have great views of the young Danube, for example from the exposed raven rock. From here it is still a few relaxed kilometers to your today's destination Gutenstein. The selection of accommodations in Gutenstein is limited, so it is worthwhile to organize a place to sleep in advance. If you have a tent with you, you will find a large campsite on the banks of the Danube towards Sigmaringen.
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Today's stage from Gutenstein to Sigmaringen is one of the most spectacular sections of the Danube-Zollernalb-Weg. On the twelve-kilometer hike, wonderful views, beautiful nature and historical highlights await you.You leave Gutenstein and first hike a bit uphill. The effort is rewarded with a great view from Teufelslochfelsen. Then the path leads you along the edge of the demolition to the ruins of the broken Gutenstein - a castle complex that has been in a dilapidated state for 500 years. Here you can take a break and enjoy the great view of the valley.Not far, then you reach the idyllic Inzigkofer Park. You walk past bizarre rock formations and grottos. It is worth taking the short detour to the legendary Teufelsbrücke and the steeply rising Amalienfelsen.On a flat route you hike the last kilometers to your destination in Sigmaringen. Here you will find a good selection of accommodation and restaurants. If you still feel like it and have energy, you can take a closer look at the impressive Hohenzollern Castle. It sits enthroned on a long limestone cliff above the Danube.
The fourth stage on the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg leads you through the idyllic Laucherttal. You say goodbye to Sigmaringen and the Danube with a last look at the beautiful castle from the Mühlberg. Then you leave the city, walk through the forest and soon meet the Lauchert. From the Nägelesfels you have a great view down into the green valley.You hike down a narrow path and follow the tributary of the Danube. On the way you will pass in Jungnau, where you can fortify yourself in the inn “Zur Traube”. Or you can simply unpack your own snack and make yourself comfortable on the banks of the Lauchert. In Veringendorf, a detour to the church with its green, tiled roof is worthwhile. It is the oldest church in Hohenzollern.We continue along the Lauchert until you see the first houses of Veringenstadt in front of you. The path leads you past an ostrich farm before you reach the center of your today's destination.
You start the fifth stage on the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg in the center of Veringenstadt. The first part of the 16 km long hike leads you relaxed on a flat route along the Lauchert. On a narrow path you follow the course of the river to Hermentingen.The Alemannic settlement originated around 500 to 600 AD. Very close to the village you will pass the Gallus spring, one of the largest springs in the Swabian Jura. You keep walking along the banks of the Lauchert until the river divides. On the right the water of the Lauchert flows, on the left the Fehla branches off - and you walk straight up the 720 meter high Enzenbarn.The path then leads you down to Hettingen with its magnificent palace complex. You can take a break at the Landgasthof Krone. Because now it's a bit uphill to the plateau, where you'll be rewarded with a great view. You then hike down a narrow path and through the Teufelstor, a very special rock formation. You will soon have reached today's stage destination Gammertingen.The path runs somewhat south of the small town. In the center you will find several restaurants, accommodations and shops. Today you celebrate mountain festival on the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg.
Day six on the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg shows you the wild and romantic False Valley and the stony high plateaus. From the center of Gammertingen you walk back on the actual long-distance hiking trail. You hike a short distance uphill and leave the Lauchert valley. You will soon meet the Fehla valley. From the castle ruin Baldenstein you can enjoy a first view of the almost 20 kilometers long river that rises in Burladingen.Look forward to absolute silence in the Fehatal - neither roads nor train tracks disturb the idyll. Enjoy the beauty of the valley and treat yourself to a break on the banks of the leisurely flowing river. Then it goes up on the other side of the valley to the plateau.The path leads you a good way across the plain. You have a wonderful vision. You hike comfortably through the forest and on dirt roads. Soon you will come across an insect and herb garden, a school project with great opportunities to rest.Then it goes uphill again to the Bannholz viewpoint at a height of 750 meters. Here you can catch your breath and enjoy the view before tackling the last part of the stage to Winterlingen.
It continues with stage 7 on the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg. The almost 18 kilometers long route takes you in a varied up and down from Winterlingen to Albstadt-Ebingen. Most of the hike is along the steeply sloping Albtrauf.You leave Winterlingen and hike through the Mühltal to Straßberg. There you can treat your feet to wellness in the barefoot park or Kneipp in the Bürgerpark. Then it goes up the mountain into the high valley with its beautiful, old trees. The stomach is already grumbling? Then look forward to typical Swabian cuisine with dumplings and ox-mouth salad in the Fohlenweide restaurant.You walk along the eaves to the Schleicherhütte, from where you can already see your destination Albstadt-Ebingen. But before that, the path leads you up to the castle rock. Once there was a castle up here, today you can enjoy a wonderful view down to Albstadt. A steep path goes straight down to the Ebingen district.If you are still looking for a program for the evening, you can let off steam or relax in the “badkap” water park.
The eighth stage on the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg begins to warm up with a crisp climb on the Schnecklesfelsen. At Albstadt's heights, you will continue on your way to Meßstetten, one of the highest cities in Germany.You leave Albstadt-Ebingen and hike uphill straight to Albstadt's heights. You will be rewarded with fantastic views. On Ochsenberg you can take a little break in the restaurant's garden restaurant. The next climb to the quarry is already waiting.Through the forest you hike down to Margrethausen with its beautifully situated monastery. It goes along the Eyach to Lautlingen. There the path leads you through the park of the Stauffenberg Palace and past the memorial for the resistance fighter Claus Schenk, count of Stauffenberg.The path then takes you back up the Autenwang. From the peat rock you can enjoy a beautiful view again before you continue to walk up to Meßstetten. By the way, today's stage goal is up to 989 meters.
The ninth stage on the Danube-Zollernalb-Weg is a real panoramic tour: along the 27 km long route, one hundred percent Alb awaits you with gentle hills, juniper landscapes, blooming meadows, mystical forests and rugged rocks along the Albtrauf. You can enjoy unique views from Gräbelesberg, Hörnle, Lochstein and Plettenberg.It starts in the center of Meßstetten. The path will soon take you up to the Graeblesberg. The mountain spur is 300 meters above the Eyachtal and falls steeply down on three sides - quite impressive. Then you continue on a varied route through forest paths and the plateau.The next promising highlights are not long in coming: the Hörnle, the Lochstein with its summit cross and finally the striking Plettenberg with its 1,002 meters. The challenging part of the hike is behind you and you more than deserve a break at the Plettenberghütte.Now it's just downhill to your stage destination Schömberg. At the reservoir, just before the town center, you can refresh yourself from the crisp but beautiful hike and let the evening sun shine in your face.
The last stage of the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg takes you high up to the highest mountain in the Swabian Jura. With its 1,015 meters in height, Lviv is the front runner and the culmination of the long-distance hiking trail. With its 12 km route you can take the hike relaxed. But still plan the route from Lemberg to Gosheim, where you will then have access to public transport.From Schömberg you hike past the reservoir and uphill in the forest to the Ottilien chapel. The path leads you comfortably up the mountain to Hummelsee near Delkhofen. The perfect place to take a break and unpack Vespers. With fresh energy it goes uphill, slowly the slope becomes crisp. At the ruins of Oberhohenberg, you broke the thousand mark.Soon you can see the Lviv Tower in the distance. You hike a bit down to the Lemberger saddle. Here the path meets the Donauberglandweg. From now on it's the final spurt: on the last 700 meters you climb another 90 meters and finally stand at the Lembergturm, the destination of the Donau-Zollernalb-Weg.The 34 meter high strand is also called the "Eiffel Tower of the Swabian Jura". The skeleton construction is at least a little reminiscent of the French model. And the view is at least as fantastic: On clear days you can see as far as the Alps in the south, the Black Forest in the west and the Stuttgart TV tower in the north. You have more than earned this magnificent panoramic view! 160 kilometers and almost 4,500 vertical meters are behind you - peppered with memories of beautiful landscapes.From Lemberg you walk about half an hour to Gosheim. From there you can take the bus to Rottweil or Tuttlingen, where you have a connection to the train network.