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The Harz Witches Trail

8 Days & 7 Nights 4.6 Read 21 reviews
  • Hike the complete Harz Witches Trail, crossing Germany's magical Harz Mountains
  • Immerse yourself in the fairy tales, half-timbered villages and forests of the Harz National Park
  • Follow in the footsteps of Goethe and summit the Brocken, North Germany's highest peak
  • Walk from West to East, crossing the former border of a once divided nation
  • Explore Quedlinburg, one of the best preserved medieval and renaissance towns in Europe
One of the 'Top Trails of Germany', the Harz Witches Trail crosses a magical region famed for fairy tales, witches and legends. Traverse the Harz Mountains National Park from Osterode to Thale taking in evergreen and coniferous forests, rocky canyons, towering cliffs, medieval half-timbered villages and the famous Brocken. The highest peak in the Harz Mountains, the Brocken is the focal point of the pagan Walpurgis night festival, when according to myth, witches and devils abound. A hike through the Bodetal gorge is a wonderful finale before reaching your end destination of Quedlinburg, the jewel in the crown of the Harz's traditional villages and towns. Spend your evenings reflecting on the highlights of the trail over a hearty German meal and a beer or local schnapps. The Harz Witches Trail is the best way to experience this often overlooked region of Germany.
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You'll enjoy this tour if you are a fan of long days of walking on good quality trails and working up an appetite for a hearty evening meal in the evening. The Harz Witches Trail offers a unique combination of natural and man-made highlights and will appeal to those interested in German history, folklore and classic long-distance trails.

Tour Type:

Classic Routes | If you’re the active, outdoorsy type, who’s interested in taking on the great routes of the world or looking for a challenge, then our Classic Routes are for you. We’re talking the West Highland Way, Tour Du Mont Blanc and the Passau to Vienna Danube Cycle Path, to name but a few!


Inn to Inn Walking | Walk from place-to-place changing accommodations each night. Generally staying in B&B’s, inns, and guesthouses.

This trip is suitable for:

Solo Travellers

As a guide, we would suggest that the minimum age of traveler this tour would be suitable for is: 5 Years

Ideal if you have an interest in:

  • Long-Distance Trails
  • National Parks
  • Accessible by Rail

Activity Level & Terrain

This trip is rated 'moderate' overall. The longest day is 23km and the average daily distance is 15km. The trails are undulating with a moderate amount of ascent and descent each day, with a daily average of 360m. You should be a keen hiker used to long days on varied terrain (forest trails, rocky, grassy and mountain paths) to get the most from this tour.


The walks are very well waymarked. We also provide you with detailed turn-by-turn route notes and maps. In addition, you will have access to the Macs Adventure Smartphone App enabling you to follow the route using your phone's GPS so you will have no problems finding the way. You can simply download the GPX tracks to your phone for offline use and off you go!


You will stay in comfortable 3 & 4* hotels and guesthouses, all in wonderfully peaceful locations. The hotels have been hand-picked and all offer a warm welcome to hikers. The accommodation we normally use is indicated in the itinerary, however is subject to availability. We will always try our best to accommodate you in the hotels and locations described, however, due to availability it may not always be possible. In these cases we will accommodate you in nearby towns that can easily be reached by either public transport or by private transfer (supplement payable) You can add on extra nights in any of the overnight locations on this tour.

Single Rooms and Solo Walkers

This trip is available to solo walkers but a solo walker supplement is payable. Single rooms are also available should someone in your party prefer to have their own room. Again, a supplement is payable. 


All breakfasts are included in the cost of your trip.  Expect a continental breakfast with bread, jams, yoghurt and muesli available. Usually there are also local meats, cheeses and eggs on offer. Dinners and lunches are not included so you have the freedom to choose from what’s on offer each day. You may be able to order a packed lunch at your accommodation for the following day, or you can find bakeries and shops in each town to stock up on food for your hikes. There are plenty of options for dinner each night, either at your hotel or in nearby restaurants. If you have any dietary requirements please let us know at the time of booking.

  • 7 Nights in 3*, 4* hotels and high quality guesthouses
  • 7 Breakfasts
  • Baggage transfers
  • Brocken railway tickets
  • Information Pack, maps, route notes, GPX tracks, access to our smartphone app
  • 24-7 Emergency telephone support from our German and UK offices
  • Travel insurance (required)
  • Travel to the start and from the end points
  • Lunches, Dinners and Snacks
  • City taxes (2-3 euros per night)
  • Public transport (buses and cable cars)
  • Additional nights before, during or after the walk
  • Solo walker supplement
  • Single room supplement (s)

When To Go

This trip is available between April and late October. We recommend starting on Sunday-Thursdays for the best chance of availability. The Harz Mountains are particularly beautiful in spring with fresh flowers and leaves all around, and in autumn when the flora changes colour and morning mists hang over the plateaus. The first snow can fall in late autumn and last until April.

Getting to the Start

Hannover and Berlin are the closest airports, from where Osterode is easily reached by train (2h10 and 2h30 respectively). Check Deutsche Bahn's website for more information.

Getting from the End

Quedlinburg has a train station and regular trains connect to Berlin (approx. 3 hours) and Hannover (approx. 2 hours), as well as several other destinations in Germany. Check Deutsche Bahn's website for more information.

Luggage Transfer

Bag transfer is included in this trip; your bags will be moved between hotels. We ask that you limit your baggage to one bag per person with a maximum weight of 20kg per person. 

General Information

The distances and ascents/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example proper rain gear, sun hat, sunscreen. Your information pack has detailed advice and a kit list on what to take. This includes good waterproof gear, walking shoes/boots, and lots of other useful bits and bobs.

The reviews for this tour up until December 2019, are based on a previous itinerary. As of December 2019, minor changes and improvements have been made.

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Day 1 Arrive in Osterode Day 2 Walk to Dammhaus, bus to Altenau 12 miles / 19 km Day 3 Walk to Brocken and Brockenbahn to Schierke 14 miles / 23 km Day 4 Walk to Königshütte 11 miles / 18 km Day 5 Walk to Neuwerk 7.5 miles Day 6 Walk to Treseburg Day 7 Walk to Thale, train to Quedlinburg 6.5 miles / 11 km Day 8 Onward Travel

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