Time Travel: A truly royal route to an almost forgotten vantage point where, over 200 years ago, the panoramic view enchanted even Queen Friederike Luise of Prussia: The circular trail brings together culture and nature in Baden-Baden’s spa therapeutic landscape in a harmonious manner, and the route is never strenuous.
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The path begins in the heart of the old spa district at the roundabout in front of the Caracalla Spa. It passes the former Spital Church, one of the oldest buildings in the city. The Calvary Group dating to ca. 1500 AD commemorates the former cemetery behind the church and is of art-historical significance. From here, the trail continues along the tree-lined Avenue of Sighs through the Rotenbach Valley park. The park boasts of a collection of around 70 flowering dogwoods, most of them originally from Asia and North America.
At the Baden Revolution Square, where the monument to the Russian poet Fyodor Dostoyevsky is also located, the path makes a sweeping curve towards the Steinwäldle. Before you reach the forest, you pass under the busy Castle Hill Bypass. Flanked by a small stream, a natural path now goes up a slightly steep slope into the “primeval forest”. It is not long before you reach the Turkish Path. Follow it for a short distance and then, using the natural stone staircase, turn off into a romantic zigzag path. This path was already praised in 19th-century travel guides for its attractiveness, and has only recently been made accessible again by the Municipal Forestry Office.
After a few hairpin bends, you reach the vantage point at Hare’s Leap (260 m), which gives the hiking trail its name. Here a seating arrangement invites you to take a break and enjoy the view of the valley below, of Baden-Baden's “local hill” (Hausberg) – the Mercury Hill – and of the undulating Black Forest landscape.
After the refreshing break, the walk continues to the Childhood Memory Place, where the Pädagogium’s primary school and kindergarten are located. From here, the path leads to the monument dedicated to Friedrich Camille Freiherr von Montperny and meanders past the “Juice Shop” (Saftlädle) on the grounds of a former fruit tree nursery. The distinctive natural-stone walls belonged to this nursery.
Shortly before crossing the Castle Road, the path leads through an exceptional conifer grove. Impressive trees also characterise the privately owned Castle Park, along whose walls the path continues onwards to a panoramic terrace
above the Rotenbach Valley. From here, you not only have a view over a part of the trail you traversed at the beginning, but also of the villa area on Annaberg across the valley.
The last section of the trail runs along the Paracelsus Way, named after the famous humanist and doctor. From here, you can admire the Centre for Rheumatic Diseases and the Caracalla Spa from a little-known but interesting perspective that shows the historical cores of these buildings.
Along the hiking trail, 16 illustrated bilingual text panels provide information on the historical evolution of the spa therapeutic landscape of Baden-Baden along with its cultural and natural attractions.
Hiking paradise even on warm days: The circular trail offers an ideal balance between sunny and shaded pathways.
Entering the “forest refuge”: The part of the hiking trail leads through a “forest refuge” where nature can take its course without human intervention. Please do not use this part of the trail during storms and bad weather. Branches could fall.