Day Trip Tips Bergisch hiking weeks and Easter run: Five tips for outings in the surrounding area

Bonn/Region · The Bergisches Land region is organising hiking weeks on a grand scale, saltwater is once again trickling through the graduation tower on the Nahe, there is a city tour for joggers in Eupen and a museum tour with goats in Kommern.

10th Bergische Wanderwochen: Two events to celebrate the anniversary.

10th Bergische Wanderwochen: Two events to celebrate the anniversary.

Foto: Cora Berndt-Stühmer

The Bergische Kaffeetafel is well known, and we now need to get used to the term "Bergische Wanderwochenvermehrung" (Bergische hiking weeks multiplication). What started as a single week almost ten years ago quickly became two - and the two have now become four, albeit spread over two seasons. The organisers say this is down to the popularity of the event and also because the festival will be celebrating its tenth anniversary in 2024. "The Bergische Wanderwochen have become firmly established, we are particularly proud of this and would like to thank our loyal hiking community in a special way," says Gabi Wilhelm, managing director of the tourism organisation Das Bergische. "This is why we have decided to hold the Hiking Weeks twice this year - in spring and autumn.

Spring dates: 27 April to 5 May. Autumn dates: 21 September to 6 October. The spring programme is already out. There are 65 walks spread over nine days, although the start of the programme is rather unusual: The "Bergische 50" adventure hike starts at Wipperfürth's market square and covers 50 kilometres "through the diverse nature of the Bergisches Land". Or you can choose the shorter Bergische 25. All in all, the programme is suitable for all ages and abilities. From walking among the junipers to donkey trekking, there is plenty to choose from. Early bird and after-work tours cater for the time slots of working people. The photo was taken near Odenthal.

Running through town

Just 20 kilometres north-west of Monschau is Eupen, the capital of the German-speaking community (DG) in eastern Belgium. Visitors come to explore the nearby Hohes Venn-Eifel nature park, but the former cloth-making metropolis with its pretty patrician houses also has a lot to offer. Now you can even discover Eupen on the move. The "Jooks" app makes it possible. Joggers (or walkers) set off on an 8.1-kilometre circular route that links historic buildings, parks and other sights. The route is displayed on your smartphone and you can listen to interesting information through headphones. Running is popular in Eupen: the 44th International Eupen Easter Run takes place on 30 March. Runners of all ages can take part.

Long Friday for Annette von Droste-Hülshoff

Writer Annette von Droste-Hülshoff (1797-1848) was born in the beautiful moated castle of Hülshoff in Havixbeck, near Münster, and lived in nearby Haus Rüschhaus for almost 20 years from 1826. The Annette von Droste zu Hülshoff Foundation, together with the cultural centre Center for Literature (CfL), has been responsible for running both houses since 2018, thus preserving her memory. At the opening of the season on 3 March, the house artists introduced themselves at Haus Rüschhaus. Regular guided tours will be offered again from 27 March. And on 22 March, the monthly "Long Friday" format starts in both houses with a varied evening programme and an informal "Burgschnack" discussion.

Information: (02534) 10 52; www.burg-huelshoff.de

 Regular guided tours of Haus Rüschhaus resume on 27 March. Photo: Münsterland e. V. / Philipp Fölting

Regular guided tours of Haus Rüschhaus resume on 27 March. Photo: Münsterland e. V. / Philipp Fölting

Foto: Foto: Münsterland e. V. / Philipp Fölting

From Easter, saltwater will again trickle through the hedges

The Salinental lies on the banks of the Nahe between Bad Kreuznach and Bad Münster am Stein. Water from the region's saline springs trickles down both sides of mighty brushwood walls, known as graduation towers, and evaporates. The result is briny air and balm for the airways. This used to be a salt-mining area, but now it is a health resort. Nine graduation towers make up the largest open-air inhalatorium in Europe. Water wheels, engine pits and workers' houses complete the ensemble. Information panels explain the technology, such as the "droplet graduation". The Saline Valley is barrier-free. Irrigation of the graduation works will be restored from Easter.

Info: (0671) 83 600 50; www.bad-kreuznach-tourist.de

On tour with the poor man's cow

The programme of events at the Kommern open-air museum near Mechernich is picking up speed. The tour "On the road with the poor man's cow" (Auf Tour mit der Kuh des kleinen Mannes) has become a classic. In the title role is museum goat Jupp. Back in the day, owning cattle was a luxury not every family could afford, so the unpretentious goat came into its own. In Kommern, well-behaved Jupp carries straw and other materials in a cart with farmer Antonia Zimmermann (photo) to the stables and workshops. Antonia explains the tradition to visitors. The next dates: 10 March, 21 April and 19 May, from 11.00 to 14.00.

Information: (02443) 99 800; www.kommern.lvr.de

(Original text: Heinz Dietl; Translation: Jean Lennox)