A hike with expansive views - beautiful landscapes and the rushing Eder river turn this hiking route into a fairy tale spectacle.
The 20 kilometre long premium hiking route runs through the varied landscape along the Eder river around Arfeld and Schwarzenau. On the approximately six hour tour, you can explore the eight bends of the Eder river at a sprightly pace.
The trail goes up and down through the hilly landscape. You will be rewarded along the way with wonderful panoramic views on the heights and adventurous, winding nature trails in the valleys.
The viewing platforms set special accents; these provide good sightlines over the section of the trail that is already behind you and the section to come.
The signs showing stylised waves run in both directions along the Via Adrina, which incidentally was awarded the title of third most beautiful hiking trail in Germany in 2009. By taking a well marked shortcut, it is also possible to divide the circular tour into two stages of twelve kilometres each.
Enjoy the tranquillity along the rambling route and breathe in deeply.
Start the hike at the car park next to the bridge over the river Eder. Cross the bridge before making a steep ascent. After one kilometre, a viewing platform offers a view over the entire hiking area. The “Café Hainbach” is a good place to stop for a rest along the way. When you walk around the basin of the Mühlbachtal valley, you may meet a herd of rare red Wittgenstein highland cattle. After a long descent with views, including onto the Arfeld bend of the river Eder, cross the L 903 road. Continue walking along the edge of a steep bank of the Eder and through untouched deciduous forest. After a long descent with more views, you reach the former railway track, and follow the path that runs parallel to it. You reach the “Schwarzenauer Mühle” restaurant, with a self-service garden café. In 1708, Alexander Mack baptised himself and other fellow believers in the river Eder very close to the Schwarzenauer Schloss palace, and with this symbolic act founded a pietistic religion. A long, steep ascent follows to the town of Hüttental. A second platform offers interesting views. You then reach Arfeld with the important decanal church, which is now also a cyclists’ and hikers’ church. Next to the church is the “Alte Schmiede” (“Old Forge”) museum. An ascent takes you to the “Wittgensteiner Schieferpfad” (“Wittgenstein slate path”) premium trail. Walk along the river Eder back to the starting point.
The circular tour demands a certain level of fitness and surefootedness in places; sturdy shoes are recommended.
The Via Adrina comes third on the hit list of the best premium trails in NRW, with 71 points.
Arfeld: Schmiedemuseum (forge museum).
From Bad Berleburg to Dotzlar via the L553 or L718. From there, you go to Arfeld over the Eder bridge. Turn off to the left. The car park is on the left.
Free parking is available.
Hiking map WaldReich Wittgenstein, 1: 25,000, Zweckverband Region Wittgenstein, 2nd edition 2008, ISBN 3-00-010140-3, 9,50 €