13 Brewery Hike

Thirteen Brewery Hike

How many thirteen brewery hikes are out there in the world?  I guess it depends on how far you are willing to hike.  The Bamberg area in northern Bavaria is undoubtedly a (if not the) premier destination in the world for beer and brewery hikes and a longstanding route nearby is called the “13 Brauerien Weg” or the 13 breweries path.

The route is just more than 20 miles in length (33 km) and figuring a mile and a half per brew it isn’t really practical to both walk it and enjoy much beer in a single day.  It turns out to be a nice bike route as well but you still can’t enjoy too many beers if you only have a day.  I spent several days on shorter segments and the large number of breweries along the way still made for quite a challenge to cover all the ground.

This is firmly in the area of Bavaria called Franconia.  The local tourism organizations are trying to brand this area the “Franconian Tuscany” I guess as a counterpoint to the more rugged landscape to the south and east which is more widely known as the Franconian Switzerland.  The Franconian Tuscany is an area of rolling hills – agricultural lands dotted by small forests and ancient scenic villages many with beautiful old churches.  I hiked in August when the forests and fields were loaded with wildflowers.

13 Brewery Hike
Route of the 13 Brewery Way

The village of Strullendorf at one end of the route is served by train and many of the villages have Ver­kehrs­ver­bund Groß­raum Nürn­berg (VGN) bus service from Bamberg so there are a variety of ways to carve up the adventure using public transit.  The 927 Bus Line serves Memmelsdorf, Drosendorf, Schammelsdorf, Melkendorf,  and Litzendorf — a centrally located village.  You will find that opening days and hours and vacation schedules for the various breweries are all over the board so pre-hike research is well-advised.

The beer at every stop was rewarding and the venues ranged from rustic to somewhat elegant.  In addition to the 13 breweries, there are four bierkellers (beer gardens) along the route.  Much of the walk is on paved or packed gravel pathways although some sections pop out onto rural roads and streets.

You may click on any gallery image to see it in a larger format and to open a slideshow viewer that lets you scroll through larger versions of all images.

The 13 Brewery Hike

Some Beers on the 13 Brewery Hike

For more stories about hikes and beers in Bavaria, CLICK THIS LINK.

4 responses to “Thirteen Brewery Hike”

  1. Franz D. Hofer Avatar

    Seems I missed this post when you wrote it — five years ago!! I love the 13 Brauereienweg. It’s a bit like Zoigl in the Oberpfalz, which is a bit like collecting hockey cards. You won’t the whole series in one go, so you have to keep going back. I’ve done at least five hikes/bike rides that take in parts of the trail and still haven’t gotten to every brewery/Bierkeller along the route, usually because one or the other isn’t open when I happen to be in the area — or have done other hiking routes altogether because I’ve been in Bamberg at a time when most places have taken short holidays (late October/early November is one of those times when everyone’s taking a break before all the Bock tappings).

  2. Walt Avatar

    I hiked this trail before on a Tuesday in early September on a nice day. Only a few people were on the trail and a few of the breweries were closed. Local Germans recommended going on the weekend when all the breweries will be open during the day. Especially Sunday.

  3. Mag McGinley Avatar
    Mag McGinley

    I wrote last week about rooms for 10 people 24-27 May on the brewery hike trail, thank you, Mag

    1. Kevin Holsapple Avatar
      Kevin Holsapple

      Hi Mag – are you writing looking to find accomodations? I’m not really in that business, but I may be able to give you some advice about who to contact. Let me know.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.