Hiking through the “red fire” of Franconia’s vineyards
Franconia’s “Rotwein Wanderweg” (Red Wine Hiking Trail) guides walkers through a unique landscape to discover the “rubies” among the local wines.
Franconia is famous for its white wines, but Franconian winemakers are just as passionate about red wine. Above all in Spessart-Mainland, on terrain dominated by mottled sandstone, they cultivate velvety Spätburgunder (Pinot noir), aromatic Frühburgunder (Pinot noir précoce) and full-bodied Portugieser. There, between Großwallstadt, Miltenberg and Bürgstadt, runs Franconia’s “Rotwein Wanderweg”.
Over the course of 70 km it leads walkers over hills covered in ancient terraced vineyards, through open fields and woods, past the abbeys of Himmelthal and Engelberg, and always returning to the blue ribbon of the River Main and its beautiful riverside paths. In this way, the route offers a wonderful combination of wine culture and hiking experience, which is why it has been awarded the quality seal “Franconia – Wine.Beautiful.Country!”.
This trail is open all year round – when the vines are in bud in spring, when they are in full flower in summer, when autumn brings a mass of colour and when winter reveals their impressive structure – and can be divided up into several day stages. The crowning glory is the plethora of fantastic views, such as those from the top of Klingenberg am Main, home to the ruin of the medieval castle of Clingenburg. The route continues over the vine-covered hills past Großheubach and Miltenberg to Bürgstadt, where it makes a wonderful loop through the traditional vineyard of Centgrafenberg.
Naturally the tour is not a dry experience, as Franconia’s “Rotwein Wanderweg” has no shortage of places to stop and take refreshments, including its seasonal wine bars. Here winemakers pamper guests with their wines and local home cooking. Franconia’s red wines are the perfect accompaniment to the game specialities from the wide forests of Spessart-Mainland. In the places where the vines grow, the wine can also be enjoyed on a tour with the guides from the “Weinerlebnis Franken” (Franconian Wine Experience), who convey their passion for Frankenwein (Bavarian wine of Franconia) with knowledge and charm.