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Long Distance Hiking recommended route Stage 2

Pfälzer Höhenweg Stage 2: Dannenfels - Bastenhaus

· 3 reviews · Long Distance Hiking · Pfalz
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Zum Wohl. Die Pfalz. Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Blick von der Ruine Falkenstein
    Blick von der Ruine Falkenstein
    Photo: Dominik Ketz, Zum Wohl. Die Pfalz.
m 700 600 500 400 300 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 km Ludwigsturm Donnersberg Königsstuhl Burgstubb Falkenstein Burgruine Falkenstein
The second stage brings us higher – from Dannenfels we climb the 687m high Donnersberg, the highest mountain of the Palatinate, and continue to Marienthal and the Bastenhaus Hotel-Restaurant.
Distance 15.2 km
4:05 h
423 m
379 m
674 m
385 m
Uphill it's all along sweeping forest paths, past the lookout points of Moltkefels and Hirtenfels to the more than 2000 years old Celtic circular hillfort. A little later you will see the 27 metre high Ludwigsturm with views down into the Rhine valley and even the skyline of Frankfurt, when the weather allows. Snacks and refreshments are available at the Waldhaus or Keltenhütte. We continue to the highest point of the Palatinate: the Königsstuhl with great views over the Donnersberg region before continuing through the dense forest and descending into the picturesque village of Falkenstein. Built on a volcanic vent built and perched high above the houses are the ruins of Falkenstein, which is the scene of many artistic events today. In Falkenstein there are several opportunities to rest and refresh oneself. With rustling leaves under your shoes, the way now leads along the foot of the Donnersberg


UFFBASSE! - Campaign for being considerate of others in nature

  • Always act in a proactive, friendly and considerate way towards everyone you encounter along the way.
  • Respect nature, do not destroy plants and always stay on the paths. Try to avoid excessive noise and leave the forest before dusk.
  • Remember to take a rubbish bag with you when you go out and take your rubbish back home.
  • Please keep your dog on a leash at all times. Other visitors and animals thank you.
  • For your own safety, observe all road closures, including at weekends.
  • Park only in designated parking areas. Leave space for emergency vehicles and agricultural machinery.
  • Please give priority to agricultural and forestry traffic.

Author’s recommendation

  • Unbedingt den Ludwigsturm besteigen. Falls (unter der Woche) geschlossen, kann man den Schlüssel am Waldhaus holen.
  • Auf dem Donnersberg einen Abstecher zur rekonstruierten keltischen Ringwallmauer machen.
Profile picture of Tobias Kauf
Tobias Kauf 
Update: January 31, 2023
Quality route according to "Wanderbares Deutschland"
Highest point
674 m
Lowest point
385 m
Best time of year

Track types

Dirt road 28.19%Forested/wild trail 57.81%Path 12.62%Road 1.36%
Dirt road
4.3 km
Forested/wild trail
8.8 km
1.9 km
0.2 km
Show elevation profile

Rest stops

Burgstubb Falkenstein
Blockhütte Marienthal

Safety information

 In light of recent events:

Coronavirus Guide from the German Hiking Association


In autumn in particular, it is important to remember that leaves lying on the ground can hide bumps, roots, stones and holes in the path. Trees can topple and branches can fall down after thunderstorms and rainstorms. Natural paths can become muddy and slippery, especially in poor weather conditions. Not all rocks and precipices are secured with ropes or railings. You need to be sure-footed in certain areas. Damage to paths of this kind is to be expected on hikes. If you feel that certain sections of the path are not passable for you, please avoid them.



We endeavour to announce all closures due to forest work or hunting parties on this platform. Nevertheless, sometimes there are situations where hiking trails are closed and we may not have been informed. If you unexpectedly encounter a road closure or diversion, please follow the instructions for your own safety.

Tips and hints





Hikers' car park near the Kastanienhof guest house in Dannenfels (417 m)
49.624171, 7.944558
49°37'27.0"N 7°56'40.4"E
32U 423772 5497380
Show on Map


Hikers' car park at the Bastenhaus hotel

Turn-by-turn directions

The second stage of our hike begins in the health resort town of Dannenfels and brings us on a steep ascent to the Donnersberg. We hike along idyllic woodland paths, past the Moltkefels and Hirtenfels viewing points, up to the remains of a Celtic ring fort (1), which was built on the Donnersberg in 150 B.C. Enjoy the view from the nearby 27m high Ludwig tower (2). In good conditions, you can see right across the Rhine plain to Frankfurt from the top of the tower. Take a break in the Waldhaus (3) or Keltenhütte (4) café-restaurants.

Continue to the King's Chair (5), the highest point in the Palatinate, and enjoy a magnificent view over the forested plateau and the Donnersberg region. We then begin the steep descent through thick forest to the picturesque village of Falkenstein. The imposing ruins of Falkenstein Castle (6), which are also used as an open air theatre, overshadow the houses. Here at the foot of the Donnersberg, along pretty paths at the forest edge, we reach our destination of the Bastenhaus Hotel-Restaurant. Enjoy a good meal on the terrace of this traditional hotel as well as the stunning view of the highest mountain in the Palatinate.


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Train to Rockenhausen, onwards by bus or taxi (Tel. +49 (0)6352 / 750404) to Dannenfels

Getting there

A63 to the Göllheim exit, then continue on the L397 to Dannenfels


In Dannenfels


49.624171, 7.944558
49°37'27.0"N 7°56'40.4"E
32U 423772 5497380
Show on Map
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Book recommendation by the author

Rother Bergverlag : Die Pfälzer Weitwanderwege Pfälzer Höhenweg, Pfälzer Waldpfad, Pfälzer Weinsteig. In 30 Tagen durch die Pfalz (Autor: Jürgen Plogmann). 140 Seiten mit 60 Farbabbildungen, 30 Höhenprofile, 30 Wanderkärtchen im Maßstab 1:75.000, eine Übersichtskarte. ISBN 978-3-7633-4401-7


Author’s map recommendations

  • Public Press Wanderkarte Pfälzer Höhenweg im Maßstab 1:25.000, deutsch, Leporello Falzung mit 14 Teilkarten, GPS-genau, fünf redaktionelle Seiten mit Ausflugszielen und Einkehrtipps. Weitere Hauptwanderwege enthalten. Preis: 9,99€. Direkt hier bestellen.
  • Wanderkarte Pfälzerwald 2, NaturNavi Gmbh, ISBN 978-3-96099-104-5



We recommend the following equipment as standard for our hiking tours:
  • Sturdy shoes
  • Clothing suitable for the weather
  • Sun and rain protection
  • Sufficient quantity of food and drink, as refreshment stops or shopping facilities are not always available or open.
  • Although the paths are very well marked throughout, for safety reasons it is always advisable to carry a suitable hiking map so that you can quickly find your way to a safe area in the event of a thunderstorm or emergency.

Questions and answers

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Jens Korn
November 30, 2020 · Community
When did you do this route? November 28, 2020
Detlev D
May 11, 2018 · Community
Schön und richtig „pfälzisch“ ist der Weg bis zum Ludwigsturm bzw. Keltenhütte. Danach kommen meistens lange und eher eintönige Ziehwege bis Falkenstein. Leider waren wir an einem Freitag unterwegs und alle Einkehrmöglichkeiten waren geschlossen. Geöffnet nur Sa und So. Das war etwas enttäuschend.
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Photo: Detlev D, Community

Photos from others

15.2 km
4:05 h
423 m
379 m
Highest point
674 m
Lowest point
385 m
Multi-stage route Scenic Refreshment stops available Cultural/historical interest Geological highlights


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