Blick von der Burgruine Karlsburg auf den Main, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Burgruine Karlsburg, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt Karlsburg Wanderer Blick von der Karlsburg auf Karlstadt, Foto: JM, Lizenz: Stadt Karlstadt Karlstadt Mainwiesen, rechts die Stadtmauer, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Historisches Rathaus Karlstadt, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Die alte Ro├čm├╝hle, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Oberes Tor und Oberer Torturm, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB

Historical Karlstadt

Historically Relevant
City Trip

On this hiking excursion to Karlstadt, you will first explore the old town before travelling through a species-rich high forest to the highlight of your short circular tour: the ruins of Karlsburg Castle.

4 h
8 km
Key facts of the tour
The picturesque town of Karlstadt is overlooked by a no less romantic castle ruin. Planned on the drawing board in 1200, the Staufer layout of the historic old town with its chessboard-like layout has been preserved to this day.

The town, affectionately known as Karscht in Main Franconian dialect, is full of mostly medieval gems. This tour takes you to some striking buildings such as the parish church of St Andreas, the historic town hall and some of the town's many towers and gates. Finally, the ruins of Karlsburg Castle beckon with its panoramic view of the historic old town and the unique natural landscape of the Franconian wine country.
A hiking tour for nature lovers, culture vultures, families and explorers

Start and end station

Start station
3 tour steps
8 km / 4 Stunden
End station

Our tip: Please make sure to check your train connection and the expected capacity before you start your journey.


Tour starts on


Karlstadt railway station is directly adjacent to the old town. Walk straight ahead a few steps into Neue Bahnhofstra├če and turn left into the pretty green area by the town wall. Stroll through this until you reach Alte Bahnhofstra├če.

You are now entering the centre of the old town. You will notice the so-called "Arche" on your right. This pretty half-timbered house from the 16th century used to be the German School of Karlstadt and is now used by the Order of the Knights Templar as a monastery and guest house.

You probably don't feel like resting at the start of your hike and you have probably already spotted your first destination: the parish church of St Andrew.

Historic town hall Karlstadt

The historic town hall dominates and adorns the market square in the centre of the old town. Built in 1422 as a council, merchant and dance house, it epitomises the archetype of a German town hall. The market hall on the ground floor has three naves and the citizens' hall on the first floor is still the largest of its kind in Franconia.

The fa├žade with its stepped gable facing the market square gives the otherwise rather plain exterior its unmistakable character. The double flight of steps originally provided the only access to the upper hall.

The little bell tower of the town hall clock crowns the ridge. Above it, in a niche, stands the "Schwedenm├Ąnnle", created in 1718 by the Karlstadt sculptor Kilian Sch├╝├čler. Five times a day, it sounds its lansquenet tune "From the beret the feather sways".
It can be heard every even hour from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. throughout the Old Town.

Marktplatz 1ÔÇĘ

Phone: 09353 906688
Email Address:
Historisches Rathaus Karlstadt, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB


The view across the market square down to the Main Gate with the ruins of Karlsburg Castle in the background is a popular photo motif for good reason. For you, it is also a preview of the literal highlight of today's tour.

You cross the market square, walk towards the river and pass through the gate.

The Main is now directly in front of you and Karlsburg Castle appears on the opposite side of the Main.

You walk along the left bank of the Main until you come to a large, cobbled square with the mill tower and the historic Rossm├╝hle mill just before the subway through the town wall.

Horse mill

The old horse mill behind the south-west corner of the town wall has been rediscovered thanks to the redevelopment of the old town centre. Horses once ensured that the mill was set in motion and kept going in a ground floor vault made of quarry stone. This meant that even in times of war, when the people of Karlstadt were unable to have their grain ground in M├╝hlbach on the other side of the Main, they had the flour they so urgently needed.

Since its abandonment in the middle of the 17th century, the vaults of this gin mill have formed the foundation for a house garden. New construction work as part of the renovation of the old town enabled the walled-up mill room to be uncovered and restored in 1991.

The wooden mill was reconstructed by volunteers between 1998 and 2004 and can be set in motion by visitors themselves during a tour - due to a lack of suitable horses.

ÔÇĘUntere Spitalgasse 27/29ÔÇĘ

Phone: 09353 906688
Email Address:
Die alte Ro├čm├╝hle, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB


On your last stage in the old town, leave the M├╝hlturm behind you and follow Untere Spitalgasse towards Hauptstra├če to another tower, your fourth stop: the Oberer Torturm. The T├╝rmerstube inside the tower is accessible as part of a guided tour of the town.

Upper gate tower

The Upper Gate Tower forms the southern entrance to the town and was the seat of the town tower until the beginning of our century. It is popularly known as the Cat Tower. This name goes back to a legend, according to which the last tower keeper survived a fall from the penultimate floor onto a large pile of brushwood completely unscathed - like a cat.

The construction of the Upper Gate Tower - incidentally one of the tallest in Franconia - dates back to around 1350. During the renovation of the old town in 1990/1991, it was repainted with its 16th century colours. On the land side is the large coat of arms of Prince-Bishop Melchior Zobel von Giebelstadt.

To the side, next to the modern pedestrian passageway, a crucifixion relief from the 15th century is walled in. It was once the last stop for those condemned to death on their way to the place of execution in the gateway as a so-called confession altar.

Hauptstra├če 75

Phone: 09353 906688
Email Address:
Oberes Tor und Oberer Torturm, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB

Tour ends on


After the tour of Karlstadt's old town centre, you now set off on the hiking stages of today's tour.

You cross the Main on the Old Main Bridge. On the other bank, a small flight of steps leads you down from the bridge on the right.

Follow the signs until you reach the Burgweg, which takes you through a species-rich high forest and past the Schl├Âssle, a villa built in 1910, to the highlight of your short circular tour: the ruins of Karlsburg Castle.

Tour map


Bahnhofplatz 1

97753 Karlstadt

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