From gentle strolls to day hikes, there are plenty of walking routes to explore in Alsace. Read our walking guide to find the best routes, with maps and photos.
Alsace Walking Routes Map
Alsace is dominated by its broad, central valley, dotted with cute villages. On the eastern slopes vineyards dominate the hillsides, with higher and wilder mountains rising up behind them. There are plenty of walks and hikes in Alsace, ranging from gentle strolls in the vineyards to more demanding hikes in the mountains.
If you only have one day, you won’t be able to hike and see all the villages on the Alsace Wine Route. Instead, go on a guided tour of Alsace from Strasbourg*, or a Day Tour of Alsace from Colmar*. You’ll actually end up walking quite a lot, but around the villages, not the lovely countryside.
The walking routes described below focus on walks and hikes outside, or in combination with the cute villages in Alsace. If you’re interested in walking tours through the villages themselves, see our France Walking page.
Best Walks and Hikes in Alsace
- Riquewihr Villages & Vineyards Walk – 11 km, 235 m climb
- Ribeauvillé Three Castles Hike – 6.7 km 370 m climb
- Tanet-Gazon du Faing Lakes Hike – 17 km, 600 m climb
- Katzenthal Vineyards Walk – 5.5 km, 170 m climb
- Mont St Odile Hike – 7 km, 250 m climb
- Mittelbergheim Sentier Viticole Walk – 1.8 km, 45 m climb
Four of these walks are directly on the Alsace Wine Route. These are the Riquewihr Village Vineyards Walk, the Ribeauvillé Three Castles Hike, the Katzenthal Vineyards Walk and the Mittelbergheim Sentier Viticole Walk. The other two hiking routes are still close to the Alsace Wine Route and worth the detour.
Hike details: 11 km, 235 m climb, fairly easy.
The walk from Riquewihr and around the villages and surrounding countryside is a lovely stroll, with a great combination of towns and vineyards. The variety is what makes this walk one of the best walking routes in Alsace. It’s fairly easy, with a few gentle hills. There are plenty of opportunities to stop and rest in the villages you pass, which include Zellenberg and Hunawihr as well as Riquewihr itself.
Tips: Riquewihr village is one of the most popular on the Alsace wine route, so start walking earlier and explore the town first. This way you’ll avoid the crowds, and also walk in the coolest part of the day.
Shortening the Hike: From Riquewihr, head first to Hunawihr. Instead of continuing towards Zellenberg, you can cut through the fields on a walking route straight back to Riquewihr. This shortcut makes the route 7 km with 180 m climb.
Hike details: 6.7 km, 370 m climb, easy-moderate.
This hike is a great half-day walk up to the three castles that overlook Ribeauvillé. The castles, especially the first one (pictured) are very impressive and have great views back to town. It’s quite steep up to the castles, but a lot of the route is shaded and it’s definitely worth the effort!
Tips: Make sure to combine this hike with a walking tour of Ribeauvillé town itself, where you can prepare or recover by checking out the many bakeries and cafes.
Hike details: 17 km, 600 m climb, moderate-difficult.
The walk through Tanet-Gazon nature reserve is a beautiful day hike, with fantastic views in every direction. First you walk along the edge of a cliff, through heather moorland and above blue lakes below. Tghe route returns via the lakes themselves through a mix of shady forest and open areas. It’s well worth the detour from the Alsace wine route to hike this lovely route.
Tips: You can go swimming in the lakes if it’s warm enough! You can also find a couple of places to eat or drink along the way, but it’s a long hike so take plenty of water and snacks yourself.
Shortening the Hike: From the viewpoint on the cliffs over the second lake, turn left here down the cliffs instead of right. This leads you past a couple of lakes and back to the beginning, making the hike shorter at only 10 km with 400 m climb
Hike details: 5.5 km, 170 m, fairly easy.
This walk on the Alsace Wine Route is fairly short and easy but brings great views and is a very peaceful stroll through the vineyards. You’ll also pass a castle on the route, and plenty of benches to sit and admire the surroundings.
Tips: There are several authentic wineries in Katzenthal village and they tend to be less touristy than elsewhere, so you can grab some great wines at fantastic prices.
Hike details: 7 km, 250 m climb, easy-moderate.
Mont Sainte-Odile is a monastery not far from the Alsace Wine Route and from here there are lovely walking routes through the forest. On this walk you’ll follow an ancient mysterious wall, visit several ruined castles and have breathtaking views across the Alsace Valley.
Tips: You can visit the monastery itself either before or after the hike. You can grab some food here, or even stay at the monastery!* The car park is free but can get busy on sunny summer weekends, so try and arrive early.
Shortening the Hike: You can miss out the second loop of this hike and only visit one of the castles. This makes the walk 3.5 km with 135 m climb.
Hike details: 1.8 km, 45 m climb, easy.
This very easy walk is directly on the Alsace Wine Route and enables you to have a pleasant stroll through the vineyards above the village of Mittelbergheim.
Tips: You can visit the town of Mittelbergheim after the hike, or the nearby slightly larger town of Barr.
Gear Recommended for Walking & Hiking in Alsace
Remember to check weather conditions, wear appropriate footwear, and carry sufficient water and snacks during your walks in Alsace. Always take a sunhat and sunscreen as there’s not much shade in the vineyards and the sun can be strong.
Rainjacket*: the weather in Alsace can be variable, even in summer, so a decent rainjacket is essential.
Hiking Shoes*: while boots are not necessary and may cause your feet to overheat, hiking shoes are a great compromise since they have good grip and are very comfortable for walking.
Backpack*: you’ll need to carry a rainjacket, water, snacks and more, so a decent backpack is essential.
Guidebooks & Maps for Exploring Alsace
If you enjoyed our Guide to the Best Walking Routes in Alsace, check out our France Walking and Hiking page.