Rhine Castle Trail: Oberwesel to Sankt Goar
The Upper Middle Rhine Valley is one of the most romantic places in Germany. Fortunately, there are many different ways to enjoy the region: by boat, by bike, by train, and by foot. For the purpose of this post, we’re going to introduce you to the by foot option.
There are two main hiking trails in the Rhine Gorge: RheinSteig on the right side of the Rhine and RheinBurgenWeg (Rhine Castle Trail) on the left side of the Rhine. The RheinBurgenWeg is a 200-km trail from Remagen (north of Koblenz) to Bingen, that offers hikers picturesque views of the Rhine Valley. The trail is divided into 13 stages. Stages 1 through 6 are in the Lower Middle Rhine Valley (Unteres Mittelrheintal ). Stages 7 through 13 are in the Upper Middle Rhine Valley (Oberes Mittelrheintal).
We hiked Stage 10 of the RheinBurgenWeg, between the towns of Oberwesel and Sankt Goar. This 9 km hiking route begins steeply as you ascend through vineyards overlooking the river. After roughly 1 km, you’re confronted with a choice of hiking the more challenging trail via Maria Ruh and Oelsbergsteig (6.8 km to Sankt Goar), or a slightly longer trail via Skulpturenweg and Günderodehaus (7.6 km to Sankt Goar). We opted for the route via Oelsbergsteig, which is a short via ferrata section, with fixed ropes and stirrups to help you manage the near vertical climb.
The hike winds through a verdant forest and plateaus in a rapeseed farm region. When we hiked in mid-May, the rapeseed fields were in full bloom. At Maria Ruh, you’ll be rewarded with a view of the Loreley Rock and Burg Katz, a castle first built around 1371 and rebuilt in the late 19th century, after being bombarded by Napoleon. This hike took 3 hrs.
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