©
Wildnistrail Header korrigiert Gemeinsame Pause am Bach © Voigtländer, © Voigtländer

Wilderness Trail


An adventure trail through the Eifel National Park

The 85-kilometre Wildnistrail (Wilderness Trail) leads hikers through unspoilt nature in the Eifel National Park.

The Wildnistrail (Wilderness Trail) lives up to its name: this approximately 86-kilometre route from Monschau to Hürtgenwald-Zerkall crosses through North Rhine-Westphalia’s only national park, the Eifel National Park. In a place where nature is again being allowed to exist as it once did centuries ago, hikers can follow sometimes challenging stretches through all the landscapes and habitats in the conservation area.

From easy to challenging

The Wilderness Trail offers both one-day and multi-day hikes. It is divided into four stages which range in difficulty from easy to challenging. The stage between Monschau-Höfen and Simmerath-Einruhr requires the most stamina. Not only is it the longest stage at 24.5 kilometres, it also requires hikers to conquer significant climbs to reach their destination. However, along the way lie romantic meadow valleys, which are transformed into a yellow sea of wild daffodils in spring and offer up the enticing fragrance of wild herbs in the summer. Before beginning, it is also worth taking a wander through the former cloth-making town of Monschau, which impresses visitors with its historic half-timbered houses along lively watercourses.

One-day hikes

The stage between Einruhr and Gemünd will particularly delight with magnificent views across the open Dreiborn Plateau and the lake landscape. Ordensburg Vogelsang, the former Nazi elite school, which was in operation until 1944, is also worth a detour. It is now home to a visitor and information centre. Those with an interest in history can take a tour with a certified guide.

The third stage from Gemünd to Heimbach heads past such sights as the Mariawald Abbey, the only male Trappist monastery in Germany. Upon reaching the final destination, it is worth taking a trip to the Art Nouveau power plant in Heimbach. Once the largest pumped-storage power plant in Europe, it offers tours to view the historic machinery and multi-storey switching stations. It also now serves as a concert venue.

The stage from Heimbach to Hürtgenwald-Zerkall is the easiest and also shortest of the Wilderness Trail at just under 18 kilometres. It passes through the Hetzinger Wald forest with its gnarled oaks, and the beautiful Schliebach Valley. Reassuringly, there is little chance of getting lost in the wilderness: the entire trail is signposted with a stylised wild cat symbol.

Map of NRW

Share the news

Tour overview


Info, data & tour route

Distance in km
85.0
Duration in days
-
Walking/Journey time in hours
-

Highest point in metres
625
Uphill altitude difference
-
Downhill altitude difference
-
Tour Level
Level of difficulty
intermediate

Images and videos


Be inspired: images of your NRW

Im Nationalpark Eifel gibt es Wildkatzen, die durch die Wälder pirschen, © H.Grabe
Kühle Bäche laden zu Pausen ein, © Voigtländer
Hikers at the Wilderness Trail, © G.Priske
Auf Rangertouren lernen Wanderer viel Wissenswertes über die Natur in der Eifel, © NationalparkEifel

More information


Discover it now!

Would you like to make an enquiry?


Please contact »Nationalpark Eifel/Nationalparkforstamt Eifel« directly


Inquire now

Your contact details

The data is not saved. Detailed information can be found in the Privacy Statement.

* Please complete this field

Travel Packages


Find your perfect hiking vacation!

More hiking trails in NRW

Canyon at the Teuto-Circuits hiking trails, © Rudolf Schubert
©

Teuto-Circuits

Rheinsteig hiking trail, © Tourismus NRW e.V.
©

Rheinsteig hiking trail

Blick über die Landschaft - Rothaarsteig-Spuren, © Rothaarsteigverein e.V. Klaus-Peter Kappest
©

Rothaarsteig-tracks

Auf Rangertouren lernen Wanderer viel Wissenswertes über die Natur in der Eifel, © NationalparkEifel
©

Wilderness Trail

Auf dem Rundweg können Wanderer die Blicke schweifen lassen, © Sauerland Höhenflug
©

Düdinghausen Geological Trail

two people enjoy the scenery at the Egge trail, © Teutoburger Wald Tourismus
©

Egge Trail

Extertal Burg Sternberg, © Gemeinde Extertal
©

Hanseatic Trail

Kindelsbergpfad Fernblicke, © Natalie Glatter www.wandermagazin.de
©

Kindelsberg Trail

Kleine Brücken führen den Bödefelder Hollenpfad über die Bäche, © Tourismus Schmallenberger Sauerland / K.-P. Kappest
©

Bödefelder Hollenpfad

panoramic views at the Bestwig Panorama Trail, © Reinhard Schmidtmann
©

Bestwig Panorama Trail

Hängebrücke bei Kühhude am Rothaarsteig, © Rothaarsteigverein e.V. Björn Hänssler
©

Rothaar Trail

Sauerland High-Flyer - the view at the range of mountains, © Sauerland Höhenflug
©

Sauerland High-Flyer

the landscape on Brilon Ridge Trail, © Brilon Wirtschaft und Tourismus GmbH
©

Brilon Ridge Trail

Sonnenuntergänge in der wie unberührt wirkenden Natur sind besonders beeindruckend, © Foto Oliver Franke / Tourismus NRW e.V.
©

Via Adrina – The “Panoramic Path”

fog at the Ehmsen trail, © Julian Stratenschulte
©

Ehmsen Trail

The river at the Neanderland Steig trail, © Kreis Mettmann Martina Chardin
©

Neanderland Steig Trail

River Sieg Nature Trail, © RadRegionRheinland e.V.
©

River Sieg Nature Trail

Winterberg High-Altitude Trail, © Ferienwelt Winterberg
©

Winterberg High-Altitude Trail

Medebach Mountain Trail, © Touristik-Gesellschaft Medebach mbH
©

Medebach Mountain Trail

Der Landweg ist einer der Bergischen Streifzüge, © Das Bergische GmbH
©

Bergisch Wanderings

Kleine Dörfer liegen auf dem Weg, © Uwe Völkner - Fotoagentur FOX
©

Way of St. James

break at the Ahrsteig, © www.ahrtal.de
©

Ahrsteig Trail

Roman Canal Hiking Trail - aqueduct Mechernich, © Natalie Glatter, Wandermagazin
©

Roman Canal Hiking Trail

Bergisch Trail, © Das Bergische gGmbH
©

Bergisch Trail

Rambler at the Viaduct Hiking Trail, © Gemeinde Altenbeken
©

Viaduct Hiking Trail

Kupferroute Bank an der Gedenkstätte, © Birgit Engelen
©

Copper Trail

Upper Sauerland Ridge Trail, © Ferienwelt Winterberg
©

Upper Sauerland Ridge Trail

Die Rundwege des Wittgensteiner Schieferpfades führen oft durch Wälder, © Foto Oliver Franke / Tourismus NRW e.V.
©

Wittgenstein Slate Trail

Old tree at the Hermann Trail, © OWL Marketing GmbH,S. Westermann
©

Hermann Trail

Skulpturenpfade im Kreis Mettmann Kunstwege, © Stadt Heiligenhaus
©

Trails of art in Neanderland

wood figures at the Upland Trail, © Tourist-Information Willingen
©

Upland Trail

Blick vom Hermannsdenkmal, © Teutoburger Wald Tourismus - OWL GmbH
©

Hermann Heights Trail

Paradise for hikers - the Eifel Trail, © Archiv Eifel Tourismus
©

Eifel Trail