Bacharach and the Castle hike

Bacharach and the Castle hike


One of the best preserved medieval towns in Germany, I headed from Bingen to Bacharach by way of bicycle. After a beautiful ride along the Rhine, the town did not disappoint. After entering the town through a stone archway, I felt myself do a dramatic mouth-drop, Hollywood style. I wasn’t expecting much, in fact, most people that do Rhine rides reference St. Goar as the place to see – but I have to disagree. With historic timber framed houses lining the streets and the Stahleck castle lingering above make Bacharach a living storybook.

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Then this sign caught my eye. You can assure that if there’s something in English, then it’s a bit touristy but probably worth it, especially if the sign includes “coffee, cakes, cold regional wine…” Yes, please. “Castle” in the text is great too.

As my journey upwards began, my first stop was at the Wernercapelle, unfinished gothic ruins just above the town center.

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Still unsure of my destination, the path become a little… sweaty.

Having committed 20 minutes marching around in the forest, the least I could hope for at this point was non-bubbly water.


That’s when I came upon what was likely one of the prettiest little castle courtyards imaginable.

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 Built in the 12th century the Rhine from the Stahleck Castle is quite a sight. Stahleck Castle means ‘impregnable castle on a crag’ in German. So as you can imagine, it’s on an extremely steep demanding position on river bank which makes the view exceptional. Throw in a pretzel and bottled water from the food stand in the courtyard, it was well worth the unplanned hike from the town center. I later learned that there’s now a hostel in the castle.

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And this, my friends, was a turning point in the day. Hot and thirsty, I should have bought more water, but something else caught my eye. Yes, of course ice cream – but not just any ice cream – Reisling Ice Cream. Wine + Ice Cream = Glory? Joy? Fun?

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After my tour I headed back down the Rhine to catch my ferry to Bingen. All of a 5 minute walk from the river, I highly recommend a pit stop in Bacharach.