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    Along the Rhine to Europe's Longest Covered Wooden Bridge

    Laufenburg - Sisseln - (Bad Säckingen) - Stein

    Along the Rhine to Europe's Longest Covered Wooden Bridge

    Laufenburg - Sisseln - (Bad Säckingen) - Stein

    The ViaRhenana trail is one of Switzerland’s regional trails, a total of 190 km from Kreuzlingen to Basel along the Rhine River where it demarcates the German-Swiss border. The trail can be walked in a number of stages, and this one (officially Stage 8) from Laufenburg to Bad Säckingen is an idyllic 12 km walk along the river bank, passing by two hydro-electric power plants along the way, between two attractive medieval towns which have both a German side and a Swiss side, connected by bridges. The Rhine River offers a diverse river landscape, home to many birds and even beavers, whose handiwork we came across at several locations along the way. Provided there is no snow in the lowlands (and no high water on the Rhine), this walk can be done at any time of year.

    Of particular interest is the “Alte Rheinbrücke” Bridge at Bad Säckingen, the longest covered wooden bridge in Europe. The bridge was first mentioned in the “Annals of Colmar” in 1272, and has since been damaged or destroyed several times by high water and fire. In the 1960’s, with the construction of the new power plant, the Rhine bottom was lowered by 3 meters and the bridge supports reinforced. High waters in 1999 rose to a point just 20 cm below the bottom of the bridge.

    A visit to the historic centers of both sides of Laufenburg (especially to enjoy the view from the elevated church on the German side) and the German Bad Säckingen (with its dominating cathedral, the Fridolinsmünster) are a definite must. Enjoy the best homemade Gelato in Bad Säckingen at a super reasonable price!

    Additional note: To get from the wooden bridge to the SBB station in Stein AG requires an additional 20 minutes of walking.


    Published on 17.02.2016 by GabrielleMerk - Tour Date: 06.02.2016
    Published on 17.02.2016 by GabrielleMerk - Tour Date: 06.02.2016

    Route Details

    Download GPS-File / SwitzerlandMobility Map
    Download GPS-File / SwitzerlandMobility Map
    North-West Switzerland
    Time Required
    3 hours
    12 km
    109 m
    114 m
    Season Start / Season End
    January - December
    Level of Difficulty (Hiking)
    Points of Interest
    Old Town Laufenburg (both Swiss and German sides), Power Plants, Wooden Covered Bridge at Stein AG
    Starting Point
    Train Station Laufenburg (Swiss Side)
    Starting Point with Public Transport
    Train Station Stein-Säckingen
    Return with Public Transport
    Places to Eat
    Laufenburg, Bad Säckingen
    Laufenburg, Bad Säckingen
    Things to Note
    The river's edge trail cannot be accessed at high water. There is a parallel path through the forest a few meters up as an alternative so this route can be walked year 'round (if no snow).

    Route Description

    From the train station in Laufenburg follow the trail markers to Stein-Säckingen (Route 60, ViaRhenena). This means heading into the historic center of Laufenburg. Head across the bridge to visit the historic center of the German side of the city as well.

    After returning to the Swiss side of the bridge, make your way to the bank of the Rhine and head downriver in a SW direction.

    00:15: Arrive at the first of two power plants (the older one) on this route. Shortly past the plant (at the boat lift) are stairs down to the edge of the river (no trail marker). Or go a bit further along for the higher trail.

    Several times along the trail between here and Sisseln, you have the option to choose the trail right along the river, or the one a few meters higher up.

    01:40: At Sisseln continue in the direction of Stein-Säckingen.

    02:15: Pass the second of two power plants along this stretch.

    02:30: Arrive at the old wooden bridge "Alte Rheinbrücke." Before heading in the direction of Stein-Säckingen train station (another 20 minutes from here), head across the Bridge into the quaint town of Bad Säckingen on the German side of the Rhine.

    02:50: Arrive at the station in Stein-Säckingen.






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