82 KM I ALTITUDE 886 METRES I DURATION 5.45 HOURS I LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY HARD
The Kraichgau is an ancient cultural landscape. On this route, the “Land of 1000 Hills” shows off all that nature has to offer (in the form of orchards, ravines and dry stone walls) alongside culture with castles and other hidden secrets.
STARTING POINT AND HOW TO GET THERE
THINGS TO SEE
PEAT BOGS :
Jump on your saddle and prepare to see the landscape and people up close and personal on this route. If you’re feeling up to it, you can embark upon the 75-km loop we have put together for you. But if you’d rather, you can pick the stretch of the route that appeals to you most and find an appropriate starting point of your own. The best bit is that you can cut your cycling adventure short if you want thanks to the dozen different train stations (S3 from Heidelberg or Karlsruhe, S31/S32 from Karlsruhe or Rastatt, S4 from Karlsruhe or Heilbronn, S5 from Karlsruhe or Pforzheim, S9 from Bruchsal or Mühlacker and regional trains from Karlsruhe, Heidelberg, Pforzheim or Stuttgart). We’ve got plenty of secret tips and highlights in store for you: When you are just a few kilometres to the south of Bruchsal, you will start to climb Michaelsberg Hill. Take a look inside the Wallfahrtskapelle (Pilgrimage Chapel) of the “Dragon Slayer”. This landmark lies just back from the fertile Rhine Valley, offering a view of the Palatinate (Wasgau) and Alsace (Vosges) over the river. If the weather is on your side, you may even be able to see Kaiserdom zu Speyer (Speyer Cathedral). It’s no surprise really that people started to settle here back in the Stone Age and the excavated fields belonging to the first farmers hark back to the Michelsberg culture. We highly recommend that you pop into the museum at the foot of this culturally important hill to learn about the first German peasant leader, Joß Fritz (15th/16th century). Then it’s time to move on to the lovely cool climes of the wooded gorge in the Ungeheuerklamm Nature Reserve. Nature lovers will feel right at home here. There is so much else still to see along the way: hidden ravines, dry stone walls, the Geologie-Schaufenster Derdinger Horn (Derdinger Horn Observation Platform), the Faust Museum in Knittlingen and the historical Altstadt (Old Town) of Bretten, where famous humanist and reformer Philipp Melanchthon was born. You will then pass the marsh, the Hungerquelle Spring and the orchards in the Walzbach Valley. In other words, you will be treated to a full tour of the wine region, covering everything from the Amthof der Zisterziensermönche (Cloister of the Cistercian Monks) in Oberderdingen to the Zuckerbäcker-Museum (Confectionery Museum) in Gochsheim. Not to mention all the delights that await in the region between the Rhine and Neckar Rivers: quaint and cosy taverns, picturesque villages with half-timbered houses, old moated castles, posh wine-growing estates and so much more.
Copyright photo on this page: Kraichgau-Stromberg Tourismus e.V. Bruchsal Michaelskapelle
Copyright map: map.solutions GmbH