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Long Distance Hiking recommended route Stage 8

Pfälzer Waldpfad Stage 8: Dahn - Erlenbach

· 2 reviews · Long Distance Hiking · Pfalz
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Zum Wohl. Die Pfalz. Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Burgengruppe Alt-Dahn
    Burgengruppe Alt-Dahn
    Photo: Dominik Ketz, Zum Wohl. Die Pfalz.
m 400 350 300 250 200 150 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 km Burgenmassiv Alt-Dahn … Tanstein Kahlenberg Burgruine Drachenfels
On the eighth stage of the trail from Dahn to Erlenbach we pass some impressive rock formations and the ruined castles of Altdahn, Grafendahn, Tanstein and Drachenfels perching dramatically on the red sandstone massif.
Distance 17 km
5:10 h
468 m
464 m
363 m
204 m
The eighth stage presents itself with a series of defiant personalities. On the tour of Dahn to Erlenbach you will pass spectacular rock formations and ruined castles built  on red rock formations. From Dahn the route leads uphill to the memorial cemetery of the Chapel of St. Michael, which was built at the edge of the forest beneath the mighty rock formation of Hochstein. The trail passes through this rock formation to the castles of Altdahn, Grafendahn and Tanstein the ruins of which are all  perched on a rocky ridge. The path then leads down to Erfweiler and back uphill to the Kahlenberghöhe with its lookout point. Past Schindhard and Busenberg the path leads to the ruins of Drachenfels, which was also built on a rocky cliff.  Refreshments are available at the Drachenfelshütte or the Weißensteiner Hof .


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.
Profile picture of Tobias Kauf
Tobias Kauf 
Update: January 31, 2023
Quality route according to "Wanderbares Deutschland"
Highest point
363 m
Lowest point
204 m
Best time of year

Track types

Asphalt 13.25%Dirt road 9.81%Forested/wild trail 36.48%Path 33.07%Road 3.55%
2.3 km
Dirt road
1.7 km
Forested/wild trail
6.2 km
5.6 km
0.6 km
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Rest stops

Landgasthaus "Zum Jägerhof"
PWV Drachenfelshütte

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



Dahn (207 m)
49.151532, 7.778055
49°09'05.5"N 7°46'41.0"E
32U 410896 5445019
Show on Map



Turn-by-turn directions

From Dahn we follow the Pfälzer Waldpfad trail to the Ehren cemetery, with its St Michael Chapel (1) and its picturesque location directly underneath the rock massif of the Hochstein mountain. The trail then leads us through the woods over the hill to the castles of Altdahn, Grafendahn and Tanstein (2). The ruins of these three castles are perched high above Dahn on a red sandstone rocky crag. We then descend to Erfweiler, walking through the village and through the woods to the viewing point (3) on the opposite slope of the Kahlenberg mountain, on the edges of a pine forest flooded with light.

After passing another viewing point on the summit of the Kahlenberg, the trail brings us down to the outskirts of Schindhard and further through the woods to Busenberg. From there we can walk to the ruins of Drachenfels Castle (4), which stands, like the castles at Dahn, on a massive red sandstone rock. Not far from the ruins is the Drachenfels Hut (run by PWV, a local association) where we can enjoy something to eat before our last descent, which brings us to Erlenbach. The Drachenfels Hut is open all year round (except for Christmas and New Year), Wednesdays from 11am, Saturdays from 12pm and Sundays and holidays from 9am.


all notes on protected areas

Public transport

Train to Wissembourg, Hinterweidenthal or Pirmasens, from there by bus to Dahn

Getting there

A65 to the Landau-Nord exit, continue on the B10 to Hinterweidenthal and from there on the B427 to Dahn / A65 to the Kandel-Nord exit, continue via Bad Bergzabern on the B427 to Dahn


In Dahn


49.151532, 7.778055
49°09'05.5"N 7°46'41.0"E
32U 410896 5445019
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 22 Teilkarten, GPS-genau, sechs redaktionelle Seiten mit Ausflugszielen und Einkehrtipps. Weitere Hauptwanderwege enthalten. Preis: 11,99 €. Direkt hier bestellen.
  • Wanderkarte Pfälzerwald 7 und 8, 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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Christiane Brandt 
August 04, 2020 · Community
Eine wirklich tolle und abwechslungsreiche Tour mit vielen Pfaden und tollen Burgen.
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When did you do this route? August 03, 2020
V. W.
September 26, 2016 · Community
Eine wunderschöne Etappe mit vielen Aussichten, Felsen und Burgen! Von Dahn aus ist man sehr schnell wieder auf tollen Waldpfaden bis hoch zur Soldatenhütte und einer tollen Aussicht. Danach geht es zur Burgengruppe Altdahn. Alleine hier könnte man schon etliche Zeit verbringen um sich die alten Gemäuer anzuschauen! Aber diese Etappe bietet noch viel mehr! Zwar ist es ein stetiges Auf- und Abwandern aber es lohnt sich wirklich! Allein der asphaltierte Weg durch Busenberg zieht sich etwas, bis es dann wieder auf einem Pfad hinauf zur Ruine Drachenfels geht.
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When did you do this route? September 24, 2016
Aidart Pott 
August 22, 2015 · Community
Diese Etappe hat besonders wegen der Burgengruppe Altdahn und dem Drachenfels ihren Reiz. Ein Rundgang bzw. eine Besichtigung ist eigentlich ein muss. Zum Teil führt die Etappe auch den Felsenland Sagenweg mit, der unterwegs auch mal ne Schleife mehr oder auch mal eine auslässt. Bilder gibt es ja schon einige daher möchte ich nur punktuell ergänzen.
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When did you do this route? August 20, 2015
Soldaten/Gefallenen Friedhof am Hochstein, dort ist auch die Michaelskapelle
Photo: Aidart Pott, Community
Ortsmitte Erfweiler, Aussichtspunkt Hahnfels. Der Waldpfad biegt hier rechts ab, der Felsenland Sagenweg führt oben vorbei.
Photo: Aidart Pott, Community
Ich finde diesen "Wetterschutz" sehr von Vorteil, die Hose bleibt sauber und die Bank hält länger.
Photo: Aidart Pott, Community
Die Drachenfelshütte am Fuße der Burg. Preisgünstig und lecker!
Photo: Aidart Pott, Community
Felsentreppe beim Drachenfels
Photo: Aidart Pott, Community
Burgengruppe Altdahn
Photo: Aidart Pott, Community
Kahlenberg bei Schindhard
Photo: Aidart Pott, Community

Photos from others

+ 3

17 km
5:10 h
468 m
464 m
Highest point
363 m
Lowest point
204 m
Multi-stage route Scenic Refreshment stops available Cultural/historical interest Geological highlights


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