1st stage: Dahn-Erfweiler
We start at the tourist information office in the Schulstraße in Dahn and follow the "Gespenster-Logo" towards the cemetery. Here we hike through the picturesque forest route up to the viewing platform at the Jungfernsprungfelsen. We climb back down again to Dahn and walk next to the Sängerfelsen, which also offer a magnificent view. Passing imposing cliffs, the trail leads to the ruins of Neudahn, which we should explore in a separate tour. Then it goes through the Moosbachtal to the "Dahner Hütte" (Pfälzerwaldvereinhütte, refreshments available, please check opening times). Over rocky paths, past lovely viewpoints and tremendous rock formations, the trail now leads to Dahn and then onto the castles of Altdahn where the ruins of the mighty walled-castles of Altdahn, Grafendahn and Tannstein can be admired. A visit to the castle museum is highly recommended. We then descend to our the first stage destination of Erfweiler.
2nd Stage: Erfweiler-Bundenthal
We start in Erfweiler and walk along sandy paths through the wonderful Palatinate Forest. Going up a gentle uphill path, we soon reach the first lookout point on the south side of the Kahlenberg near Schindhard. A short time later we pass the picturesque village of Schindhard and walk through orchards in the direction of Eilöchel. At the local hiker’s car park we climb up to the Eichelberg, where we will enjoy a dreamlike view over to the Busenberg. Along the side of a mighty rock wall we walk along an idyllic birdwatcher’s trail along and soon reach the parking lot "Hexenplätzel". We follow the trail through Busenberg and already have our next destination in sight, the Drachenfels castle ruins. After a steep ascent, we enjoy a short break in the spacious castle grounds overlooking the wooded surroundings. Food and drink is then available at the Drachenfels tavern (Pfälzerwaldvereinshütte), which is open on Wednesdays and weekends. Passing the chapel of St. Gertraud, the trail leads to Erlenbach and continues then to Burg Berwartstein. A visit of this elevated castle requires an entrance fee, but the exciting tours can be totally recommended. A castle tavern is located in the Rittersaal. The last section of this stage leads past the rocky massif of the "Fladenstein" (with geological trail) along to Bundenthal.
3rd Stage: Bundenthal-Schönau
Today's stage is, due to the steep climbs, the veritable crowning stage of this tour. We start in Bundenthal and walk past the airfield of Söller, cross a small valley and then begin the strenuous climb through changing forest landscapes up to the summit of the "Mäuerle". Now past the imposing cliffs of Mäuerle, such as the "Teufelstisch", the trail goes down narrow paths to Nothweiler. Here we can enjoy a delicious traditional tarte flambee before starting the strenuous climb up to the highest castle ruins of the Palatinate, the Wegelnburg (572m). Once at the top, we are rewarded with a beautiful panoramic view. On the ridge, we walk slightly downhill and cross the border to France. Gorgeous panoramic views await us on the ruins of the Hohenburg and Lowenstein, which we can explore extensively. Then we follow the spectacular rocky path, only suitable for sure-footed hikers, to the Hiker’s Experience Site of P'tit Fleck and the Fleckenstein castle ruins. A more comfortable walk up to the Fleckenstein begins at the entrance to the Felsenpfad and is marked with a red bar trail marker. An exhibition informs us here about the special features of the forest as well as giving us the opportunity to visit the Bistro and gift shop. Those who want to visit the nearby castle ruin of Fleckenstein, can buy here tickets. At the foot of the imposing Fleckenstein castle ruins, we continue to the Hirschthal. Now we wander through the idyllic and secluded valley of the Hichtenbach before we turn into the forest to our right. Here it then leads up along paths and forest roads until we enjoy a magnificent view up over the forest from the Bruderfelsen and on to the ruins of the Fleckenstein castle. Shortly before we reach our destination of Schoenau, there awaits us as the last highlight of this stage, the mighty massif of Pfaffenfels, which you can climb up using ladders. The climbers will find a fantastic view.
4th Stage: Schönau-Fischbach
In Schönau, we follow the trail through the Wengelsbachtal up to the Wengelsbacher Hals and then on to the castle ruins of Blumenstein. Along idyllic forest tracks, we reach the Col du Maimont in France. We explore the castle Wasigenstein before we start the ascent to the summit of Maimont. Passing the Opferschale, a flat rock, we walk on forest paths back to Germany and enjoy great views over the region from the Friedenskreuz. A spectacular section of the trail takes us along an elongated rock barrier. In switchbacks, we then move along the border down to the Zollstock. From here the trail is flatter and we get into the Sauertal. In the village of Petersbächel, the Wanderheim Walthariklause invites you rest awhile. The next highlight awaits us at the nature reserve of the Pfälzerwoog. On wide forest trails we arrive at the hidden forest lake of Pfälzerwoog and we enjoy the peace and quiet on the forest benches. It then goes up to the Lindelskopf, where we once again enjoy the magnificent view. We then follow the trail further to the Ludwigswinkel. Here we experience both a barefoot trail and a sculpture trail. Past the swimming lake Saarbachhammer we finally reach today’s destination of Fischbach.