Blick von der Weinlage Stettener Stein in Richtung Himmelstadt, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Der Stationsweg fuehrt zum Vogellehrpfad Karlstadt , Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Stettener Stein Weinwanderweg, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt Stetten, Karlstadt, Foto: Jochen Schreiner, Lizenz: Stadt Karlstadt Naturschutzgebiet Karlstadt Saupurzel, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt Karlstadt-Stetten Terroir F, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt Unterwegs auf dem Vogellehrpfad, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Die Pfarrkirche St. Michael in He├člar, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB Saupurzel, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt

The steep slopes in the Stettener Stein

Fine wine
Animals & Nature
Churches & Monasteries

A challenging hike through the oldest vineyard in Franconian wine country. Get to know the local birdlife and enjoy the view from the Saupurzel on an excursion by train.

Karlstadt (Main)
7 h
21 km
Key facts of the tour
This challenging hike takes you through the countryside around Karlstadt and the Saupurzel to Stetten and He├člar. Take a day to explore the birdlife, extraordinary nature reserves and winegrowing villages.

A highlight of the hike is the terroir f "Wine and Main" in the middle of the sun-drenched steep slope of the Stettener Stein vineyard, one of the oldest vineyards in Franconian wine country. Situated high above the Main, typical Franconian grape variety wines thrive on steep shell limestone soils that slope down to the river.

A wide panoramic view over the Franconian wine country and the Main awaits you.
A hiking tour for nature lovers, families and explorers

Start and end station

Start station
Bahnhof Karlstadt (Main)
4 tour steps
21 km / 7 Stunden
End station
Bahnhof Karlstadt (Main)

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


Tour starts on Bahnhof Karlstadt (Main)


The tour starts at the railway station in Karlstadt, or "Karscht" as the locals affectionately call the town.

Turn left out of the subway and you will find the signs for hiking trail K4, which you will follow for a large part of the tour.

First turn right, then left onto Stationsweg, which will soon take you into the heart of nature. You will soon reach the bird trail.

terroir f "Wine and Main"

Terroir f - these are locations in Mainfranken that are associated with viticulture in a special way. This includes the wine-growing landscape on the steps of the wavy limestone in the Stettener Stein vineyard near Karlstadt.

"Shapers of our vineyard sites - wine shapes" is the theme of this terroir f. A good 2 million years ago, the waters of the Main created the basis for a breathtaking wine-growing landscape with its steep slopes.

The view from the terroir f's viewing platform into the Main's wine valley shows just how marvellously the wine itself shapes the landscape. It is first directed towards the nearby Stettener Stein vineyard and can then wander unhindered as far as W├╝rzburg. So it's no wonder that this point was named the most beautiful wine view in Franconia by the German Wine Institute in 2020.

Incidentally, there is a reason why the viewing platform is suspended above the ground. This terroir f is located in the Franconian dry grassland, a type of landscape with a particularly large number of rare plants and animals, and the biodiversity at this location is thus protected.

Karlstadt-Stetten Terroir F, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt


The route continues below the terroir f. Follow the path with the vineyards on your right.

At the end of the path, turn left and then right again to rejoin the K4 hiking trail. Continue to follow the signs until you reach Stetten.

Stetten is a district of Karlstadt and is one of the oldest settlements in the area. Viticulture has a long tradition here.

As early as 1540, the village was described as one of the "...richest wine nests in the Hochstift..." with a cultivated area of 200 hectares. Around this time, a number of impressive half-timbered houses were built, which still characterise the enclosed townscape of the winegrowing village today.

You cross Stetten and return to the countryside. The route continues, always following the signs, along the edge of the forest and uphill through fields until you reach the village of He├člar from the He├člarer Berg.

Bird trail

The bird trail is idyllically situated in a forest. Over a length of around 3.5 kilometres, it shows many interesting facts about the local bird life, plants and other inhabitants of the forest. The nests of various bird species are exhibited in a glass case.

The bird trail in Karlstadt has been around for forty years. It was set up by members of the Karlstadt Bird Protection Association and delights children and adults alike. The latest achievement: in 2020, the association built a new information and shelter hut at the entrance to the bird trail. It is aimed at walkers, hikers and sports enthusiasts, but also serves to familiarise kindergartens, school classes and nature conservation groups with nature and the forest habitat.

Unterwegs auf dem Vogellehrpfad, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB
Vogellehrpfad, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt


From the bird trail, follow the K4 signposts to the Stations Trail.

It traces the 12 stations of the Passion of Jesus Christ and ends at the Chapel of the Holy Sepulchre. From there, you have a wonderful view of the southern Main valley and the wine-growing village of Stetten.

The tour takes a sharp right turn and leads you onto the M-Weg, the Mainwanderweg.

Follow it until it joins the Stetten wine trail. You walk through the forest and reach the terroir f from above.

St Michael's parish church

The small Karlstadt district of He├člar is located on the water-poor Kalkh├Âhe to the east of the Werntal valley on a slope that slopes gently down to the south and east into the municipal area, surrounded by a quiet, open landscape. The village is now more than 1200 years old.

The pretty Catholic parish church of St. Michael is located in the village centre. It dates back to the Baroque period and conceals a particularly splendid pulpit inside. The foundation stone was laid in 1693 and the church was consecrated in 1698. The altars also date from the time of construction. In 1806, Hesslar was separated from Stetten and elevated to its own parish.

Shortly before the turn of the millennium, St Michael's Church was given a new altar for celebrations, a new ambo and a new baptismal font.

B├╝hler Stra├če 2

Die Pfarrkirche St. Michael in He├člar, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB
Die Pfarrkirche St. Michael in He├člar, Foto: Uwe Miethe, Lizenz: DB


In He├člar, Obere Stiegelstra├če leads out of the village again.

Follow the K4 over the Sch├Ânartsberg to Sch├Ânarts. Beyond the small village and the railway tracks, you will come across the remains of the ruins of Sch├Ânarts Castle.

The trail runs parallel to the railway tracks for a short distance, then turns directly left. The path now leads you over a mountain with a very cute name: the Saupurzel.


The Saupurzel is Karlstadt's local mountain and towers 300 metres above the medieval town.

It is part of the Grainberg-Kalbenstein-Saupurzel nature reserve, which combines very different habitats and geological formations. A geoscientifically significant geotope has been created on the Saupurzel. Drifting sands from the Main valley have spread here and formed a dune field.

Saupurzel, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt
Saupurzel, Foto: Stadt Karlstadt

Tour ends on Bahnhof Karlstadt (Main)


From Saupurzel, the way back to the city is not far. After a short descent, you return to the railway station through the eastern part of the city.

Why not take the opportunity for a short tour of the old town before you leave?

To do this, simply cross the railway station subway and walk through the town wall into a picturesque ensemble of mostly medieval buildings.

Here you are sure to find a traditional wine tavern or one of the hedge taverns where you can sample regional Franconian wine and small dishes.

Tour map


Bahnhof Karlstadt (Main)

Bahnhofplatz 1

97753 Karlstadt (Main)

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