The Ahr Holiday Region
Red Wine, Wellness & Formula 1 Racing
It is no accident that this region is known as 'spa, wine and walking country'. The eastern Ahrweiler region has no fewer than three spa resorts: Bad Neuenahr, Bad Breisig and Bad Bodendorf, and the vines that flourish along the banks of the narrow Ahr river valley have made this into Germany's red wine paradise. It is also a popular base for walkers starting out on tours into the Eifel hills — journeys of discovery into one of the most densely forested areas in the whole of Europe. And you don't have to be a fan of Formula 1 to appreciate a visit to the world-famous Nürburgring.
Note by the Executive Editor
Frankfurt-Hahn Airport is 130 km away from the Ahr region (1:25 hours driving time by car to Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler).
The small Ahr Valley in the northern part of Rhineland-Palatinate is one of Germany's top red wine-producing areas today. Magnificent tours along the Red Wine Trail (Rotweinwanderweg) and through the vineyard terraces offer fantastic views. There are a number of paths leading down to the towns and villages along the way, so you can stop off for a rest and a glass of delicious wine whenever and wherever you wish.
There are cosy inns selling home-produced wine, taverns and great wine cellars where walking enthusiasts and wine connoisseurs can enjoy a range of culinary events that combine fine wines, tasty treats and culture. You can also find out all there is to know about wine on an enjoyable visit to the historically authentic rooms of the AhrWeinForum in Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler.
The region's excellent gastronomy combines the local wines and dishes to perfection. A highlight is the 'Gourmet & Wine' series of events. As part of a cultural programme, it involves the best chefs and vintners from the region putting together fantastic combinations and presenting them in an unusual environment.
The 35 kilometre long Red Wine Trail (Rotweinwanderweg) winds through terraced vineyards high above the Ahr Valley, linking together the wine-making villages in the 'valley of the red grape'. There is a huge range of grape varieties to be seen along the trail leading through the steep vine-clad slopes between Altenahr and Bad Bodendorf.
Starting at Ahrweiler, there is a trail on the theme of wine-growing with 31 information boards along the route, leading you to Walporzheim along a path used by vintners and along the Red Wine Trail.
The Ahr holiday region is rich in valuable mineral sources. The high purity of the mineral water extracted and its balanced mineral content make it a prized drink for both refreshment and health. However, hot mineral water also bubbles from the depths of the volcanic stone, bestowing a sense of wellbeing on those who bathe in it. The unique natural composition of the world-famous thermal water has a pronounced and invigorating effect on the body.
Thanks to the numerous springs in the Ahr region, there are three thermal baths: the Ahr thermal baths (Ahr-Thermen) in Bad Neuenahr, the Roman baths (Römer-Thermen) in Bad Breisig and the outdoor thermal pool (Thermalfreibad) in Bad Bodendorf.
Here you will find services and facilities organised in the categories
- Select (exclusive and beauty holiday),
- Wellness (wellness, relaxation and health),
- Sporting (fitness and activity) and
- Explorer (special experiences for getting to know the region).
All bearing the German Spa Association's seal of approval, which means you can be confident that your wellness break will be of first-class quality, based on a sound holistic health concept and delivered by expert medical staff and therapists.
Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler is the largest spa resort in Rhineland-Palatinate. Every year more than 300,000 visitors use the 'Ahr-Thermen' thermal baths, regareded as one of the best in Europe. As well as its therapeutic springs, the mineral water from the Apollinaris spring has also become famous. A member of the exclusive association of Royal Spas of Europe, Bad Neuenahr offers a wealth of opportunities for an elegant, five-star holiday, including the casino and nearby Nürburgring, a formula one motor-racing circuit. But if you like the simpler things in life, the romantic Ahr Valley has everything you need for a successful wellness break. The 'Symphony of the Senses' (Sinfonie der Sinne) centre in Bad Neuenahr is Germany's largest health and well-being centre under one roof with art nouveau sophistication. It is a traditional spa with comprehensive medical care and top-class facilities.
The spa town of Bad Breisig combines its experience in therapeutic remedies with the latest scientific theories about health and fitness. Physical relaxation together with stimulation for the mind are the secrets of a successful spa holiday in this romantic town on the Rhine. You can float on the water all year round, and relax as you watch the sun glinting on the crystal clear droplets in the Roman thermal baths (Römer-Thermen) at Bad Breisig on the Rhine. The mediterranean-style copper roof of this spacious thermal bath can be seen from a distance. Its Brown Grotto contains naturally warm spring water with a temperature of 38°C and there is a cold water, Kneipp hydrotherapy wading pool. The sauna area with a large sauna garden is supplemented by state-of-the-art fitness and massage facilities. There are a number of cosy hotels where you will get a good night's sleep to prepare you for a tour of Bad Breisig's many places of interest.
Bad Bodendorf, a spa and bathing resort and the largest suburb of Sinzig, is situated at the beginning of the lovely Ahr Valley. It is surrounded by romantic, vine-clad slopes above riverside meadows which extend for miles to where the Ahr river flows into the Rhine river. Bad Bodenberg's location in the 'Valley of Red Wine' means that it is blessed with a mild climate. You will be rewarded with magnificent views of the idyllic Ahr countryside as you walk around the surrounding area. The spa facilities are in the southern part of the village. The clear spring water which wells up from a great depth, can be tasted straight from the pump room. The charmingly old-fashioned thermal swimming pool is located on the fringes of the forest. The large pool is filled with filtered, iron-rich spring water at a temperature of 28°C, with no tap water added. The historical centre of Bad Bodendorf around the church is notable for its lovely, old timber-framed houses. Experience the Rhinelanders' proverbial humour and friendliness for yourself over a traditional meal with some local red wine.
Nürburgring racetrack — the world's longest and most beautiful racetrack — is surrounded by charming unspoilt scenery and has been a venue for Formula 1 Grand Prix racing for more than 50 years. With a varied programme of events all year round and leisure activities for all ages, the Nürburgring is a great experience for the whole family. The interactive 'Erlebnis-Welt Nürburgring' exhibition takes visitors on a journey through the fascinating history of what is probably the most famous and most notorious racetrack in the world.
Note by the Executive Editor
Experience the hair-raising speed of the Nürburgring yourself and hire the 'BMW Ring Taxi'. A professional driver in a BMW M5 with 340 bhp whisks you around the track!
There are a wealth of attractions at the Nürburgring: Drive on the Nordschleife yourself, an excellent indoor go-kart track, courses at the Zakspeed Nürburgring Racing Driver School, guided tours of the Grand Prix complex, a wealth of cycling and hiking trails and interesting thematic restaurants.
Every year, both national and international artists come here to perform for their fans over a period of three days at Germany's largest rock festival, the 'Rock am Ring'.
- The 1,000-year old Adenau with its picturesque half-timbered houses and the historical Buttermarkt quarter is situated in the heart of the Upper Eifel. Close by, between the Nürburg Castel ruins and the Hohe Acht, the highest mountain in the Eifel, you can smell the rubber burning on the asphalt of the Nürburgring. The surrounding landscape offers routes for mountain biking and Nordic walking.
- Altenahr marks the start and the end of the Red Wine Trail. The old half-timbered houses in the centre of the town are well worth a visit, as are the striking rocks with the legendary 'Teufelsloch' (Devil's Hole) above the Langfigtal nature reserve, the ruins of Burg Are and Ditschhardt hill, accessible via chairlift.
- Bad Breisig
- There are a number of cosy hotels where you will get a good night's sleep to prepare you for a tour of Bad Breisig's many places of interest, including the historical buildings along the Rhine promenade, the churches of St. Mary and St. Victor, the art nouveau mausoleum, the Celtic fortified refuge, a hill settlement dating back to the Iron age and the 11th century Rheineck Castle.
- Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler
- Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler is embedded in a unique natural landscape and surrounded by the vineyards of the Ahr Valley. It is a town with two centres that, although their atmospheres could not be more different, nevertheless form an attractive and harmonious combination of the old and the new. In Bad Neuenahr, visitors can enjoy the modern spa and fitness facilities, the Jugendstil houses, the elegant casino and, last but not least, the Ahr thermal baths. The spa town of Bad Neuenahr is famous for its springs, particularly the world-famous Apollinaris spring. By contrast, Ahrweiler has a unique historical charm. Its romantic half-timbered houses are surrounded by an intact medieval surrounding wall with a moat, gates and turrets dating back to the 13th century.
- Niederzissen in the Brohl Valley
- The Brohl Valley offers a ‘hot period’ in the history of the earth. Volcanoes shaped this idiosyncratic landscape. Adventure-seekers and researchers can set off in search of the history of the earth! Extinct volcanoes are the striking hallmarks of the Vulkanpark Brohltal/Laacher See. Laacher See (Lake Laach), which is filled with water, is the most beautiful volcanic crater. The world-famous Kloster Maria Laach (Abbey of Maria Laach), home to an order of Benedictine monks, is located on its banks. For a leisure tour of the Brohl Valley, take a ride on the Vulkan-Express (Volcano Express). During the tourist season, this historical narrow gauge railway runs almost daily and winds its way from Brohl on the Rhine through the romantic Brohl Valley to Engeln, climbing an height of 400 m. The journey promises sheer nostalgia.
- Remagen, the former Roman stronghold of Rigomagus, recently celebrated its 2000th anniversary. Ancient relics in the Römischen Museum are a reminder of the historical past. The ‘Bridge at Remagen’ Museum of Peace portrays a very different history of the town. The pilgrimage church of St. Apollinaris, built on a steep hill, is a major landmark that is visible from afar. For some time now, the town has been creating a stir in the world of art. The Skulpturenufer (Bank of Sculptures) is 14 kilometres long and extends from Remagen to Rolandswerth. It is part of the Arp Museum, which is currently above Rolandseck station.
- Discover the romantic Rhine from its picturesque side. Embedded between the mountain ranges of the Westerwald and the foothills of the Siebengebirge Hills on the right and the Eifel on the left, the Rhine Flows past Sinzig. The landscape can best be appreciated from the deck of a boat. However, those of you who prefer to keep your feet on the ground might like to walk or cycle along the banks of the Rhine. The landscape is full of sights. The historical centre of Bad Bodendorf (the largest suburb of Sinzig) around the church is notable for its lovely, old timber-framed houses.
- A family-friendly, well-signposted cycle path along the romantic river Ahr – 90km from the river's source in Blankenheim to its confluence with the Rhine.
- Relax indoors or out in the wonderful waters of the Ahr thermal baths, which bubble up from 359 metres below the volcanic landscape at 36°C.
- Ahrweiler is a wine-growing village known for its red wines. Its historical old quarter has a medieval feel and is surrounded by fortifications that are still completely intact.
- The AhrWeinForum is a wine museum offering a blend of pleasure and information. The cultural history of wine comes to life through wine tasting and a tour of the exhibition.
- Brücke von Remagen
- The bridge towers on the Remagen side of the river, which featured in the Hollywood film, now accommodate a museum devoted to historical peace studies.
- Burg Are
- The ruins of Are Castle sit high above the winegrowing village of Altenahr. 113 metres above the river Ahr, they offer glorious views of the river and the vineyards.
- Burg Nürburg
- From the keep of the main ruin on Schwarzer Berg hill, there are glorious panoramic views of the wonderful Eifel landscape.
- Burg Olbrück
- This Brohl valley landmark offers fantastic panoramic views. The romantic and informative castle tour is like taking a step back in time.
- Kloster Maria Laach
- This impressive Benedictine abbey has occupied its splendid position overlooking Lake Laach in the youngest landscape in Europe since 1093.
- Museum Rolandseck
- Works by Hans Arp and Sophie Taeuber-Arp, exhibited in the classical Rolandseck railway station and soon in a sensational new building by star architect Richard Meier.
- Museum Römervilla
- The museum's focal point is the extremely well preserved, 2nd/3rd-century Roman villa complete with portico, hypocaust (central heating), baths and wall paintings. The villa is enclosed in a modern museum building.
- Nodic Fitness Park Ahr Rhein Eifel
- Eleven different trails through stunning scenery – Europe's largest Nordic walking paradise. Comprehensive range of training options, group programmes, basic and intensive levels.
- Motor racing at its best. Live action on the legendary northern circuit or in the exhibition centre, this superlative motor racing park has plenty of attractions for all ages.
- Bad Breisig's therapeutic spring waters can be enjoyed in the Römer-Thermen baths (25,000 qm) — beneath the huge dome or in the delightful outdoor pool area.
- The Red Wine Trail runs for over 30 delightful kilometres through the »valley of red grapes« along the river Ahr.
- Seilpark Mittelrhein
- The rope park offers a breathtaking climbing experience on bridge piers up to 35 metres high, built for a railway that was never completed. Some activities are suitable for inexperienced climbers.
- Sinziger Schloss
- Sinzig Castle, built 1854-1858 during the era of Rhine Romanticism, now accommodates the local history museum, which is well worth a visit.
- Spielbank Bad Neuenahr
- The casino in Bad Neuenahr, an enchanting health resort known for its red wines, exudes all the flair of the belle époque. One of Europe's most beautiful casinos.
- Vulkan Express
- Ride the narrow-gauge railway — powered by steam or diesel — through the Volcanic Eifel along one of the most beautiful tributary valleys of the Rhine.
- Vulkanpark Brohltal
- The Volcanic Park has 21 information points presenting the fascinating world of volcanology and the relationship between man and volcanoes.
There is always something happening — whether it is art, music, wine festivals or a host of other activities. The Events Finder gives you an overview about what is on, where and when. Here you can search for events and festivals in the region.
Here you have direct access to the online accommodation reservation service of the Tourist Board of Rhineland-Palatinate. No other hotel reservation system on the Internet offers you such a broad and comprehensive list of accommodation in Germany's Rhineland-Palatinate regions. You can list accommodation, search accommodation, contact accommodation establishments and make online reservations.
9.2 By Rail and Bus Services
Frankfurt-Hahn Airport has no direct railway connection. However, the buses from the airport will take you to the railway stations in Koblenz, Trier, Mainz, Frankfurt Main Airport, Frankfurt Main City, Kirn, Idar-Oberstein and Saarbrücken where you can connect with Deutsche Bahn trains or local transport links.