Hiking in the rolling hills of Heilbronn Country
© Touristikgemeinschaft HeilbronnerLand e. V.
Sweeping views, rolling hills, picturesque half-timbered towns, and romantic castle ruins — this is what awaits you on our seven hikes in Heilbronn Country. You will discover and love the peaceful nature to the north of Baden-Württemberg on leisurely theme trails, scenic day routes, and the 100-kilometer long cultural trail through the Jagst Valley.
Framed by the Swabian Alb in the east, the Odenwald in the north, the Rhine lowlands in the west and the mighty Black Forest in the south — Heilbronn is surrounded by magnificent hilly scenery. You will hike between the famous low mountain ranges in Heilbronn Country, over gentle, sun-drenched hills blanketed in vines. The hills are crossed by Kocher, Jagst and Neckar rivers which have created peaceful valleys over the course of thousands of years.
We have selected seven varied hikes for you to discover Heilbronn Country. The hikes are all perfectly signposted and, with well-trodden trails, they are suitable for both experienced and novice hikers. We will take you through the vineyards, to old castles and small towns with traditional wineries on the six different day hikes.
If you really want to immerse yourself in the history, nature, and culture of Heilbronn Country, you should definitely take a look at the Kulturwanderweg (cultural trail) through the Jagst Valley. You hike over 100 kilometers across eight stages through the beautiful Jagst valley. Here, you can expect to find magnificent views, diverse nature, perfectly preserved old towns and a number of impressive castles. Thanks to good bus and train links, you can of course also easily choose your favorite section and plan a day hike.
Join us on a journey to Heilbronn Country and discover the true heart of Baden-Wuerttemberg.
Nature and culture are the core elements of the approximately 100-kilometer hiking trail through the Jagsttal. Nature, that means wide views over the natural river valley, rustic forests and fragrant meadows. The culture accompanies you on every step - whether as vineyards or open fields in the form of cultural landscape or as picturesque old towns, castles and monasteries. All in all, on the eight stages that will take you over a distance of about 100 kilometers from Bad Friedrichshall to Langenburg, you will experience the rich diversity of the ancient Jagsttal cultural landscape.The individual stages are between ten and 15 kilometers long and thus well suited for every hiker as a day hike. So there is always enough time to see the sights along the route. Of course, thanks to the bus and the train, you can pick out only your favorite section.Stage 1: From Bad Friedrichshall to Neudenau
12.4 kilometersStage 2: From Neudenau to Möckmühl
12.3 kilometersStage 3: From Möckmühl to Jagsthausen
14 kilometersStage 4: From Jagsthausen to Westernhausen
16.2 kilometersStage 5: From Westernhausen to Krautheim
9.5 kilometersStage 6: From Krautheim to Hohebach
13.1 kilometersStage 7: From Hohebach to Heimhausen
14.8 kilometersStage 8: From Heimhausen to Langenburg
Here are wonderful views guaranteed: On the wine trail KR1 you walk from Leingarten on the Heuchelberg and continue in the Kraichgau and the destination Eppingen. Along the way, the trail runs again and again along the sun-kissed slopes, where the juicy grapes thrive here. In any case, the best panoramic view will be served on the observation tower Heuchelberger Warte. Here spreads at your feet the wide, gentle hills of the Heilbronner Land.At around 22 kilometers, the hike is a real full-day tour. If you want to take it a little easier, you should look at the two abbreviations KR1a and KR1b. The two alternative routes take you to Schwaigern or Stetten and shorten the hike to around 14 kilometers.Starting point of the tour is the S-Bahn station Leingarten. From here, the signposted wine trail KR1 leads you through the Eichbott arboretum and along the lakes of the same name. Afterwards it goes through the forest on the Heuchelberg. At the Heuchelberger Warte you can first enjoy the view and then stop in the restaurant. Now it goes along with beautiful views along the edge of the forest. Your gaze wanders over the vineyards and into the distance.Soon after, the route leads you back into the rustic forest, where you walk past the natural monument "Drei Eichen". After you have left the forest, it goes gently downhill to Leinbachtal, where you cross the small village Niederhofen. Afterwards it goes uphill again and you follow natural forest paths to the viewpoint Kraichgaublick. Here you can already see the half timbered town of Eppingen, your tour destination, under you. From S-Bahn station Eppingen, the S-Bahn will take you back to Leingarten.
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If you are too long for the 22 kilometers of the wine trail, then you can take a look at this shortcut. It is signposted as KR1a and leads you gently from the natural monument "Drei Eichen" along other vineyards downhill to Schwaigern. This shortens the total distance to just under 13 kilometers.The town of Schwaigern enchants its visitors with an excellently preserved medieval city wall. Several inns, restaurants and cafes invite you to stop here. Also worth seeing is the Rococo Castle, which today houses a well-known winery. From Schwaigern you can then easily travel by S-Bahn back to the starting point in Leingarten.
The second abbreviation of the wine trail is signposted as KR1b. If you decide on this route, expect a total of almost 14 kilometers of hiking. The shortcut branches off about one kilometer past the "Drei Eichen" from the main path and leads you first through wide vineyards. Afterwards pass a golf course and follow the course of the Brühlgraben up to Stetten am Heuchelberg. From here, the S-Bahn takes you back to Leingarten.
“I'm entering a friendly town ...” - this is how the poet and pastor Eduard Mörike began one of his poems about Cleversulzbach, where he lived at the time. To this day, hardly anything has changed in the tranquil town and the idyllic cultural landscape around it. The signposted hiking trail KJ4 leads you from Neuenstadt am Kocher along the course of the Brettach over open meadows and fields and through hilly forests. The highlight is the detour to Cleversulzbach, where Mörike lived and worked as a pastor for many years.The starting point of your hike is Neuenstadt am Kocher. From the small town with its historic center, the course of the Brettach leads you into a lovely landscape. Up the river you follow the hiking trail and repeatedly pass small orchards, where the famous Brettach apple grows. The hiking trail leads you past the edge of the town of Brettach and then plunges into a forest.As you walk along here under tall trees, it gets a little hilly. After you have crossed the gently curving ridge, the path on the banks of the Sulzbach brings you to Cleversulzbach. If you are interested in Eduard Mörike, you should definitely make a detour to the Mörike Museum or visit the short circular hiking trail Mörikepfad. The hiking trail leads around the place in around one and a half hours and panels with quotes from Mörike let you immerse yourself in his time. Finally, you hike back to Neuenstadt over meadows and fields.
The "white gold" - this was the name once used in Bad Friedrichshall for the valuable salt that was extracted here. And there is no doubt that the rock salt from the depths of the earth has made the city rich. The salt trail N5 takes you on a route of about eight kilometers to 14 stations, where you can learn all about the history of salt mining in Bad Friedrichshall. A particularly successful end to the tour is then a visit to the nearby visitor salt mine - the huge tunnels are simply impressive.Starting point of the short hike is the car park P5 at Rathausplatz. From here you walk comfortably along the Saline Canal, which was created in the early 19th century only for salt production. On the canal, the much-needed firewood for the boiling house was delivered as rafts. Shortly before the canal flows into the Neckar, you leave the bank and cross the central station.Right behind you, the Schachtsee awaits you. As idyllic as it looks, it has emerged so dramatically. In 1895 there was a huge tunnel burglary - out of the hole in the earth emerged the now so peaceful lake. After a short walk through the city, you will soon reach the stove. Here the saline canal branches off and you can admire the Hagenbacher weir. Along the Saline Canal you finally stroll comfortably back to the starting point of the hike.
Many highlights await you on the 18 kilometer WeinkulTOUR. The circular route leads you to picturesque viewpoints with long-distance guarantee, to two impressive castle ruins, past a bird of prey station and through the romantic old town of Beilstein. Not to mention: The eponymous vineyards and wineries accompany you, of course, at every turn.The starting point of your hike is the city of Auenstein. From there, the WeinkulTOUR leads south. You hike here on good trails over open fields and follow the fully signposted route up to the Wunnenstein. Up here is not only a cozy mountain inn, but also a lookout tower. And its panoramic view is impressive: On a clear day you can even see Stuttgart on the horizon.From Wunnenstein it goes in soft up and down through the vineyards on to Beilstein. Here lures an angled old town and an impressive castle. The castle sits enthroned amidst magnificent vineyards and is home to a castle restaurant and a birds of prey station. Through the vineyards you continue to the second castle ruin of the tour. From the castle Helfenberg are only remnants of the residential tower available, but an exploration also offers a little thrill. In addition, from here you have a great view of the neighboring castle Wildeck.From Helfenberg Castle it is only a few kilometers to Auenstein, the starting point of your hike.
With about 14 kilometers, only gentle climbs and magnificent views over the vineyards of the Heilbronner Land, the hiking trail WT1 is a real pleasure trip. Finally, the impressive castle Weibertreu with its interesting castle museum and the magnificent view from its defensive wall will lure you to the end of the tour.The starting point of your hike is the city of Weinsberg, which you can reach both by train and by car. You leave the city to the east and wander upstream along the course of the Saubach. Soon the last house is behind you. With a beautiful view, the signposted hiking trail leads you across wide fields and fragrant meadows.After a while, the trail leads you into dense forest. In the shade of the trees, it goes gently uphill and suddenly you are standing in a wide clearing: the forest heath. This ancient cultural landscape was formerly visited by shepherds with their sheep and used since the late 19th century as a military training area. Meanwhile, the landscape has been renatured and it represents with its pagan character an important habitat for rare animals and plants.The Waldheide is followed by a short forest passage and immediately afterwards a great panoramic view opens up for you. On the edge of open vineyards, it's back to Weinsberg. At the end of the hike, you should definitely take the time to visit the old town and the castle Weibertreu.
On this hike you should not forget your swimwear, because two of the three lakes are beautiful bathing lakes. But even outside the bathing season, this hike is a real pleasure trip. On beautiful hiking trails you can stroll through rustic forests, across colorful meadows and along the shores of the lakes Ehmetsklinge, Katzenbachsee and Michelbacher See. In the nature park center at the starting point of the hike, you will also learn a lot about the flora and fauna of the Stromberg Heuchelberg nature park.At the Nature Park Center, the starting point of the hike, you will find the large hiking car park of the Wanderdreiklang. From here, the signposted Three Lakes Route ZA1 will take you around the small reservoir Ehmetsklinge. On wide hiking trails, you will stroll over small avenues and look out over open pastures. Without a significant incline the tour takes you through the quiet nature around Zaberfeld to the shore of the Katzenbach reservoir. Here you can swim to your heart's content - if you like, also on the designated nudist beach.Refreshed and rested it goes on to Michelbachsee. The idyllic, natural lake is under nature conservation, so you can not swim here. Shortly after you reach Zaberfeld, where you can take a break in one of the restaurants or cafes. From here it is only a short distance back to the starting point of the hike. Finally, you can of course also jump to your heart's content in the reservoir Ehmetsklinge.If you prefer a shorter hike, you can also take the shorter tours ZA2 Seenweg or ZA3 Mannwaldtour from the trail parking lot.