Lindenfels was once an important outpost of the Electoral Palatinate in the Odenwald. However, as the region declined in economic importance, so did the castle. Though it was not destroyed, the Electors had the fortifications scrapped and sold for building materials to fund projects elsewhere. This hike takes you through some of the beautiful Odenwald landscapes up to the ruins of the Lindenfels castle, and back to the start.
The Renaissance Palace of Lichtenberg in the Fischbachtal Valley is one of the few preserved Renaissance estates of the Hessen Dynasty. Though only a few interiors have survived to the present (and can be visited on request), the castle's exterior is remarkably intact, without additions or modifications from the Baroque or Romantic periods. The hike takes you around the town of Niederhausen to get the best views of the castle, and following that, it takes you through some of the beautiful landscapes of the Odenwald.
The Breuberg Castle is the Odenwald's largest and most visually striking fortification. Built on a pinnacle of Basalt and Sandstone, the castle dominates the surrounding valley with its Renaissance bastions. This hike tries to walk between the best viewpoints of the castle from a distance. The proposed route is long because I wanted to catalog the best viewpoints in one spot. Pick and choose the ones most interesting to you.
The Otzberg fortress was an outpost that traded hands between the Electoral Palatinate and Hessen. Though besieged many times, it was spared the targeted destruction faced by other regional castles. Today it houses a small museum with dramatic views from the surrounding country. This hike is about visiting the castle by public transport and collecting some of the views.
This combines the first two stages of the Malerweg, or the Painters' Way, through the forests of Saxon-Switzerland. The highlight is, without doubt, the fortress-like bridge of the Bastei and the dramatic views of the Elbe Valley below. The hike also includes some spectacular scenery up in the forests near Hohnstein.