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Hiking in Northern Germany — the Jade Trail in Ammerland

Karsten Knoefler (CC BY 2.0)

Hiking in Northern Germany — the Jade Trail in Ammerland

Hiking Collection by Angelina Kuhlmann

6-11

days

3-5 h

/ day

86.4 mi

1,150 ft

1,050 ft

Sparkling blue, lush green, bright purple, soft pastel shades and soothing velvet red: the Ammerland is a colourful region just off the German coast. The area is dotted with traditional thatched-roof houses, wide fields full of wildflowers and several bodies of water, all of which make for a wonderfully varied hiking experience. You can enjoy these beautiful Ammerland landscapes on the Jade Trail.

This long-distance hiking trail takes its name from the River Jade, which is only 22 kilometres (14 mi) long. The Trail begins at the Jadebusen, or more precisely in Wilhelmshaven, and then leads you over a good 130 kilometres (80 mi) through the Geest landscape to the Zwischenahner Meer, to Oldenburg and finally to Wildeshausen.

Along the way, you'll encounter ancient natural landscapes, such as the primeval forest of Neuenburg, wander across the unique moors of the North German Geest landscape and be persuaded time and again to enjoy delicious cakes and a cup of tea in cosy cafés. On every stage of the hike, you can enjoy wide views over the fields and often spot friendly cows grazing alongside.

In this Collection, I’ve divided the long-distance trail into six stages. A few detours to places worth seeing add just under 7 kilometres (4 mi) to this variant. You can get to the starting point in Wilhelmshaven by train. The destination of the long-distance hike, Wildeshausen, also has a railway station. Since there are always sparsely populated regions in Lower Saxony, I’ve ensured the stages always end where you can find overnight accommodation. This means you can always approach the end of each day with peace of mind.

If you can spare more than six days for this hike, I recommend making longer stops in both Bad Zwischenahn and Oldenburg. Not only are the towns themselves well worth a visit, but the surrounding area also has a lot to offer in terms of nature and culture. But maybe you often feel the same way as I do: I prefer to dive deep into tranquil paths, surrounded by nature, to escape the urban hustle and bustle. The Jade Trail is a wonderful way to do that.

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Jadeweg

80.4 mi

1,050 ft

975 ft

Last updated: January 25, 2022

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Tours & Highlights

  • Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

    Etappe 1: Von Wilhelmshafen nach Zetel – Jadeweg

    Difficult
    07:17
    18.0 mi
    2.5 mph
    100 ft
    75 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The Jadeweg has its starting point in Wilhelmshaven, one of the most important cities on the North Sea coast. If you want to see the edgy port city on the Jade Bay in peace, it is best to arrive a day earlier, because the first stage of the Jadeweg takes you quickly out of the city over a good 29 kilometers

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  • Difficult
    05:48
    14.2 mi
    2.4 mph
    200 ft
    175 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    On the second stage of the Jadeweg, a good 23 kilometers through three very different landscapes await you. The hike will be particularly varied and incredibly green, especially in spring and summer. It starts in the little town of Zetel, where you spent the night or arrived by bus in the morning. You

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  • Difficult
    05:51
    14.3 mi
    2.4 mph
    200 ft
    225 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    In the middle of the sparsely inhabited geest landscape, you hike on the third stage of the Jadeweg today to the Zwischenahner Meer. The third largest inland lake in Lower Saxony is also affectionately referred to as the "Pearl of the Ammerland". The starting point of the 23-kilometer tour is the town

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    by Angelina Kuhlmann

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  • Intermediate
    04:28
    11.0 mi
    2.4 mph
    150 ft
    125 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    After spending a nice evening right on the water in Bad Zwischenahn, several small lakes and the Lower Saxony city of Oldenburg await you on the fourth stage. Shortly after the start of the hike, right on the shore of the Zwischenahner Meer, you will reach the Ammerländer farmhouse open-air museum, which

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    by Angelina Kuhlmann

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  • Difficult
    06:45
    16.5 mi
    2.4 mph
    250 ft
    175 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.

    The fifth stage of the Jadeweg starts in the city and then runs through the magnificent nature along the Hunte. The hike begins in the city center of Oldenburg and first takes you to the coastal canal, from which the Hunte splits off a few meters later. The path now follows the course of the Hunte out

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    by Angelina Kuhlmann

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  • Difficult
    05:08
    12.5 mi
    2.4 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Expert Hiking Tour. Very good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    On the sixth stage of the Jadeweg you will get to know the Ammerland again from its most beautiful side. Far away from touristy places, you can enjoy running on flat and natural paths during the tour. There are a total of 20 kilometers ahead of you until you reach the stage destination Wildeshausen.

    

    Even

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    6
  • Distance
    86.4 mi
  • Duration
    35:17 h
  • Elevation
    1,150 ft1,050 ft

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Hiking in Northern Germany — the Jade Trail in Ammerland

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