The Rheinsteig trail runs along the right bank of the river Rhine between Bonn, Koblenz and Wiesbaden leading to forests, vineyards and spectacular views.
The Rheinsteig trail runs along the right bank of the river Rhine between Bonn, Koblenz and Wiesbaden leading to forests, vineyards and spectacular views. This exceptionally well sign-posted and closely networked trail offers the opportunity to explore the landscape and culture of Germany in all its comparatively undiscovered glory.The whole trail is offered as a self-guided holiday divided into three week-long sections, with a fourth possibility that acts as a Rheinsteig highlights. It can easily be reached by train, boat and car and is near several airports.
£599 per person for each section based on 2 people sharing
B+B Accommodation in traditional hotels in rooms with private bathroomsTransfers to or from trailheads when necessaryLuggage transfersMaps and route notes
Journey to or from home, lunches and dinners, drinks, insurance, anything not specifically mentioned in programme.
You must be able to walk the distances mentioned and deal with a significant amount of hills and cliffside paths. On most days the walk will take you up from the riverside to the path above. A head for heights is also essential.
When to Go:
Daily (subject to accommodation availability) March to November
8 days: Leutesdorf-Bonn (100km)
Arrival to Leutesdorf and overnight
Leutesdorf – Bad Hönningen (17 km, 620 m height difference)
This is a quiet and idyllic stage that runs along the slopes and heights near the Rhine, predominantly passing through vineyards, meadows and orchards. The day starts with an initial climb, followed by several splendid views of Leutesdorf and the Rhine. A pretty steep passage takes you further uphill, where the Rheinsteig trail continues on a plateau, leading through Leutesdorf’s traditional, old meadow orchards. The trail passes the Hammerstein castle ruins and, for a while, runs directly along the Rhine at Niederhammerstein. Rheinbrohl is the starting point of the Limes. The ancient wall, which marked the frontier of the Roman Empire, has meanwhile also been listed as UNESCO World Cultural Heritage. Passing woods, vineyards, fields, and slopes grown with bushes, the Rheinsteig trail continues with a varied stage along the hills besides the Rhine. The way leads through extensive vineyards, with brilliant views of Bad Hönningen, and of Bad Breisig on the other bank of the Rhine. Overnight Bad Hönningen.
Bad Hönningen – Linz (17 km, 470 m)
The trail comes to Arenfels Palace, which is scenically situated between the vineyards of Bad Hönningen. Then, a lovely stretch leads back to the Rhine, where the trail passes the small wine grower’s village of Ariendorf. The scenic town of Linz am Rhein, also known as the “colour town on the banks of the Rhine” because of its many coloured, half-timbered houses, is where you overnight.
Linz – Bad Honnef (19 km, 540m)
Ockenfels castle is the next spot with a good view overlooking the Rhine Valley, and this is followed by another, extremely scenic view at the Erpeler Ley. This stage takes you out of the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, to the Siebengebirge Hills, in North Rhine-Westphalia. The hilltops of the Siebengebirge nature reserve are of volcanic origin, and you pass some of the most famous ones. You walk along broad forest tracks, along vineyards and across fields. After crossing the Breitbach valley, the way ascends to the highest hills of this stage, Auge Gottes (“God’s Eye”) and Leyberg, with views of the Siebengebirge and the Rhine Valley. A last downhill passage passes through a small valley, taking you to Bad Honnef, located on the banks of the Rhine.
Bad Honnef – Drachenfels (15 km, 640 m)
This is quite a hilly stage, over the rounded hilltops of the Siebengebirge and through several deep valleys. An initial climb to the Himmerich and Wingstberg hilltops is followed by a path leading down into the Ohbach valley. Another steep climb to Löwenburg castle begins, and there are wide views from the castle ruins, just above the Rheinsteig. The trail leads downhill again and passes Rhöndorf, once the home of former German chancellor Konrad Adenauer. A wonderful view of the Rhine Valley near Rhöndorf, before the last climb of the day begins to the famous Drachenfels hill with the ruins of a medieval castle and a viewing platform.
Drachenfels – Heisterbach (14 km, 390 m)
Pass the palace of Schloss Drachenburg and the Nachtigallental valley, then Geisberg hill. Cross a valley, then go steeply uphill again to Petersberg Hill. In the valley again, the route passes the park of the Heisterbach Cloister, dominated by the striking and much painted ruins of the choir of the former cloister church. Overnight Heisterbach.
Heisterbach – Bonn (16 km, 140 m)
Final opportunities for views of the Rhine from above, from the vineyards of Oberdollendorf and elsewhere. Then the Rheinsteig eventually brings you to the riverbank. With views of Bonn’s former government buildings on the other side of the river, a long stretch of the way leads through an extensive park along the Rhine. Crossing the Rhine via Kennedy Bridge for the first time during the entire long-distance trail, the Rheinsteig soon reaches the centre of Bonn, where the walk ends on the scenic town hall square. Overnight Bonn.
Departure from Bonn