Rüdesheim, Assmannshausen and the surrounding area are ideal starting points for anything from short strolls to long hikes. The premium Rheinsteig trail takes walking to another level. Covering a distance of 320 km between Bonn and Wiesbaden, it passes through the Upper Middle Rhine Valley UNESCO World Heritage site. With its extremely diverse scenery and excellent signposting, the Rheinsteig is a high calibre experience for keen and energetic walkers. There are plenty of breathtaking vantage points where you can stop for a break along the way, while some of the more Alpine-like stretches require a certain level of fitness and sure-footedness. For more information, visit www.rheinsteig.de.
The Historienweg (history trail) is most notable for its passages through the, sometimes steep, vineyards surrounding Rüdesheim and Assmannshausen am Rhein. The route of 15 km also provides information about local sites of interest and the history of the region. Some of the popular circuits of the Rheingau Nordic Walking Riesling Park are also suitable for occasional walkers. Maps and walking guides are available at tourist information offices.
Assmannshausen Wild Herb Trail
The Assmannshausen wild herb trail guides the curious rambler
through a unique natural and cultural landscape that is dominated by
castles, vineyards and the River Rhine. The Upper Middle Rhine Valley
has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The village of Assmannshausen,
close to Rüdesheim, has long been renowned for its red
wines. Now it is also home to a new experience created by Kräuterwind.
The 8 km wild herb trail meanders through vineyards, such as the famous
Assmannshäuser Höllenberg, ancient stone walls, lightly wooded
forest fringes and meadows that provide a habitat for a profusion of
species. The exceptionally mild climate of the Rhine valley offers favourable
conditions for a rich variety of vegetation including herbs
such as wild rocket, fennel or even French sorrel. Information boards
along this clearly signposted trail help walkers to identify over 20
different wild herbs and provide interesting background information
about their histories, uses and properties. The stunning panoramic
views over the village and the Rhine valley transform this walk into
an unforgettable natural experience. The gradients are categorised as
easy to intermediate. The Kräuterwind restaurants in Assmannshausen
are the perfect destination at the end of a day’s walking and serve
dishes seasoned with aromatic herbs, local wines and regional specialities.
Flyer Assmannshausen wild herb trail
The Hildegard of Bingen Trail, Rüdesheim
The 6.7 km footpath takes a circular route through the vineyards of Rüdesheim to the parish and pilgrimage church of Eibingen and the Benedictine Abbey of St. Hildegard. Points of interest and beautiful panoramic views along the way offer you insights into the life of Hildegard of Bingen and the landscape as she knew it.
The trail starts at the landing stage used by the Bingen/ Rüdesheim passenger ferry (not the car ferry) or at Rüdesheim railway station. If first leads past Brömserburg Castle before heading up a short incline into the vineyards that surround Rüdesheim. The route continues via Eibingen parish and pilgrimage church before reaching the Benedictine Abbey of St. Hildegard. It then follows a contour of the landscape high above the Rhine valley with spectacular views. From the viaduct used by the former rack and pinion railway, the route follows an ancient pathway known as the „Kuhweg“ (cow path) back to Rüdesheim.
The trail is marked using the unmistakable symbol of Hildegard of Bingen, which you can also find at the website www.landderhildegard.de. Signposts are positioned at all the key points along the way providing the distances and directions to the various destinations and ensuring that you always know where you are.
If you wish to combine your visit to Eibingen parish and pilgrimage church and the Benedictine Abbey of St. Hildegard with a short stroll, you can walk directly from Eibingen up to the abbey. The route takes a small loop above Eibingen and has a total length of 3 km.
The first information boards at the ferry landing stage and car park "An der Ringmauer" not only provide a general overview of the route but also information about Brömserburg Castle and, slightly further up the hill, a description of the Medieval landscape. Here, below the cable car, you can also see where Hildegard’s abbey stood on the Rupertsberg hill. There is further detailed information at Eibingen parish and pilgrimage church as well as at the Benedictine Abbey of St. Hildegard. Finally, at a beautiful lime tree, there is a description of Hildegard’s work as a naturalist and healer.
Take your time, not only when visiting the parish church and abbey but also during the walk itself. Just relax and savour the splendid views over the Rhine valley from the many benches along the way.
Short hiking trips around Rüdesheim and Assmannshausen am Rhein and Presberg
1. The Freiligrath Route
From poetry to worldly pleasures
This route bears the name of Ferdinand Freiligrath, a Romantic poet, who discovered his passion for the revolution (of 1848) in Assmannshausen. Freiligrath wrote his "political creed" in the town in 1844 establishing him as a "bugler of the revolution" alongside Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels.
The serpentine path takes Nordic walkers on a steady but gentle ascent through Assmannshausen's famous Höllenberg, Hinterkirch and Frankenthal vineyards. After a short flat section, the path descends in a similar way. The circuit is approx. 5 km in length with a height difference of 88m. Active holidaymakers can look forward to stunning views of the Rhine Valley and the blue-red phyllite slate slopes of Assmannshausen's vineyards where the spätburgunder (pinot noir) grape is grown. A glass of the local red wine is a tempting reward at the end of the route.
2. The Ostein Route
From the enchanted forest to the classical temple
This route is named after Maximilian Amor Maria Ostein, a count of the Ancien Regime. At the end of the Rococo period, Count Ostein invested a small fortune in goldgulden to transform the Niederwald forest into a Romantic park in the spirit of Rousseau's "back to nature" philosophy.
The crowning glory of his building activities was the classical temple, destroyed in 1944 but rebuilt in 2006, which offers a magnificent view over the wide expanse of the Rhine Valley.
The route is easy once you have gained the necessary altitude - and this can be done in comfort using the cable car from Rüdesheim (or the chairlift from Assmannshausen). The circuit of 4.9 km with a height difference of 73 m is then a "piece of cake" and leads Nordic walkers through Rüdesheim's Drachenstein and Berg Kaisersteinfels vineyards with the Rhine Valley spread out for miles around below.
3. The Potters' Way
From the kiln to the wine jug
This 5.9 km circuit with a height difference of 215 metres is inspired by an old craft tradition and the difficult path used daily by the potters of Aulhausen. The route begins in the centre of the village of Aulhausen and leads over the Mühlberg hill through the Hofgraben to the Tonwäldchen (clay woods), where the local potters used to dig up the clay they required. From there it continues to the Kammerforst (a forest named after the archiepiscopal chamber), which supplied the charcoal used to fuel the kilns. Walkers are then guided back to the old wine and ceramics centre of Aulhausen, where a reconstructed kiln at the end of the route rounds off this walk recounting the history of its stoneware industry.
The town's potters regularly had to make this trip on foot carrying the raw materials they required for their trade home with them on their backs. All that Nordic walking enthusiasts need to carry today, at most, are a snack and drink as they can find sustaining local wine and apple wine - as well as many other regional specialities - at the end of their journey in Aulhausen.
4. The Monastery Route
From the high valley to the Nothgottes valley
The "high" valley is the Rüdesheim Ebenthal, a valley cut into a high plateau, while the "low" valley is the Blaubach- or Nothgottes Valley.
Active holidaymakers are likely to notice the difference at the end of the climb. The 8.5 km route ascends 245 metres through Rüdesheim's Bischofsberg and Klosterberg vineyards, above the old Eibingen Abbey and Abbey of St. Hildegard, over the Ebenthal and the former Nothgottes Monastery in the Blaubachtal valley, named after the indigo dyers who used to wash their dyed linen here and "maltreated" the waters of the stream.
The walk continues into the Magdalenenkreuz vineyards before returning to Rüdesheim, where virtuous walkers have the opportunity to indulge in the worldly pleasure of a glass of wine from one of the very vineyards they have just visited.
5. The Rhine Romantic Route
From heaven to hell
Castles and palaces, spectacular views of the Rhine Valley, the vineyards of the Höllenberg ("hell hill"), wild and romantic paths in the Eichbachtal valley and the highest point on any of Rüdesheim's Nordic walking routes ensure that this circuit lives up to its billing.
The 11.7 km long route which ascends a total of 424 metres is challenging but rewards walkers frequently with beautiful resting places and magnificent vistas.
The unique feature of this route is that walkers can start in Rüdesheim, Assmanshausen or Aulhausen and return to their starting point.
"Weck, Worscht und Woi" (bread, sausage and wine) beckon all active holidaymakers at the (start and) finish of the path.