Standing at 271 m, the Kleine Kalmit is the highest point in the Rhine Plain and offers a unique panoramic view of the Palatinate Forest and the German Wine Route.
The Kleine Kalmit is located in the east of the Palatinate Forest Nature Park near the wine and holiday resort of Ilbesheim. The name "Kleine Kalmit" comes from the Latin term calvus mons, which means bare mountain. It was formed during the lowering of the Rhine Plain 30 million years ago as deposits of shell limestone.
The white-grey tertiary limestone is covered by a thin layer of humus. Among other flora, the rare pasque flower and various types of orchids thrive here. The Kleine Kalmit is also a habitat for numerous rare spider and butterfly species. The Kleine Kalmit was declared a nature reserve on account of its unique flora and fauna.
In the past, the Kleine Kalmit was known as Wetterberg ("Weather Hill") and considered to be home to weather spirits. There were often processions up to the summit cross to ask for good weather. The Mater-Dolorosa Chapel was built in 1851 by a priest from the neighbouring parish of Arzheim to "comfort poor souls".
Every year at the end of July, the Kalmit Festival, the most beautiful wine festival in the Palatinate in 2004, takes place around the Kleine Kalmit.
Tip: It is the perfect place for a picnic. On the Kleine Kalmit, there are several picnic and resting benches, e.g. at the chapel, under the lime trees and at Kalmitwingert. To be on the safe side, you should pack a blanket so that you can move to the meadow if you need to. Please take your rubbish back with you after your picnic and dispose of it properly. We want to preserve the beautiful nature for everyone to enjoy. Please note that barbecues and campfires are not allowed. We hope you have a lovely picnic on the Southern Wine Route!