It’s one of the best beer hikes in Europe that comes with its very own beer mug for those who manage to finish the whole stretch.
Alsemberg – Alsemberg
The North-Bavarian region of upper Franconia is not shy of beer hiking trails. There’s the 13 Brauerei Weg, the Aufseß Brauerienweg, and the Fünf-Seidla-Steig which is in our opinion, the best of the bunch.
An 18km stretch that takes in five Franconian breweries, through Bavarian fields, forests, and villages, the Fünf-Seidla-Steig is a brilliant and beautiful hike, whether beer is on the agenda or not.
Seidla is Frankish for a half litre, so the title of which refers to a five half-litre climb.
Starting and ending in the village of Weißenohe, a village that is accessible by train from Nuremberg, the hiking trail goes through Gräfenburg, Hohenschwärz and Thuisbrunn, taking in each respective brewery along the way.
Northern Franconia is highly regarded as having the best beers in the world. The area specialises in dark, smokey, and sweet textured flavours.
A lot of this taste arises from Franken malt, which gives the beer a rich and golden taste. Then there’s the roasting technique, which gives the beer a darker flavour. Quite often the beer is not filtered, and stored in kellers, to keep it cool and clear, thus creating a very pure, and mature flavour.
But it’s not only the beer. Franken dining culture, is also highly regarded. Hearty, well cooked pub food can be found at almost every step on the trail, with Schäuferla and Franconian Carp highly recommended.
Starting at the Klosterbrauerei Weißenohe, a 200 year-old brewery with an incredible bock, the walk takes you up to the Brauerei Friedmann in Gräfenburg. Following up the main road and into fields and forests, the trail leads to Brauerei Hofmann, again a bar and restaurant specialising in dark beers. The peak of the trail finds Thuisbrunner Elchbräu, a restaurant with a stunning garden. The Elchbräu also has a brennerei in house, so grab a quick schnapps while you’re there. Finally the walk leads back along the longest stretch to Lindenbräu Gräfenberg, which offers up a vibrant and malty vollbier.
While there, make sure to pick up the Fünf-Seidla-Steig card. At each restaurant you collect a different stamp, and at your final stop you can trade these stamps, along with EUR 7,-, for a bespoke Fünf-Seidla-Steig Krug, or German drinking mug.
Just 30 minutes outside of Nuremberg, the trail is really accessible with trains running frequently. You should always check the website before going to make sure all restaurants are open, as some close during the week, and shut permanently during the winter months. Another hot tip, try to avoid national holidays or other popular occasions, as the trail can be quite packed at times.