This itinerant hiking trip for 4 days/3 nights through the Alsatian Jura uses the three castles of the territory as a thematic thread. It offers you the possibility to relax in the peaceful setting of an unknown and unspoilt region. Between hiking and discovery, the signposted route follows the most beautiful roads and trails that take you without much difficulty from one end to the other of this small piece of land, far from the usual frenzy and agitation of everyday life. Sundgau opens its doors to you. It's up to you to enter.
The three castles circuit can be undertaken while starting from any of the stages. Starting the route in Leymen enables access via tram from the main Basel train station.
Flexible break, depending on your means of transport and the place of departure.
The following permutations are possible:
- 4 days/3 nights
- 4 days/4 nights
Example of a 4 days/3 nights break
Day #1: Arrive in Leymen during the morning, parking at the Town Hall. Departure by footpath from Leymen Town Hall, destination Ferrette, a picturesque medieval town characterized by its 12th century castle. Along the trail: St Brice's Chapel, the Farming Museum and St Martin's Church in Oltingue; the Cave of the Dwarfs, the belvederes of Lochlefelsen and the Castle of Ferrette.
Restaurant dining in Oltingue is possible (but not included)
Stage #1: LEYMEN-FERRETTE: 22km with a gradient of 670m and about 5 hours 30 mins walk without stops
Day #2: Depart from Ferrette for Morimont castle; discover the panoramic views of Rossberg, the source of the River Ill, the Moroccan Trail in Winkel, crossing a ford, the source of the Largue and Mannlefelsen Cave in Oberlarg.
Restaurant dining in Winkel possible (but not included)
Step #2: FERRETTE-MORIMONT: 15.5 km with a gradient of 500m and approximately 3 hours 45 mins walk without stops (or FERRETTE-LUCELLE: 25 km with a gradient of 950m and about 6 hours 15 mins walk without stops)
Day #3: Depart from Morimont for Lutter. Discover the well-preserved forests of the Alsatian Jura, the ruins of the Cistercian Abbey and the Lake Lucelle nature reserve; the sumptuous Beech Alley and the magnificent panorama of the Hornihof peaks in Kiffis.
Step #3: MORIMONT-LUTTER: 23 km with a gradient of 680m and about 5 hours 30 mins walk without stops (or LUCELLE-LUTTER: 13.5 km with a gradient of 280m and about 3 hours 30 mins walk without stops)
Day #4: Depart from Lutter for Leymen via Mariastein. Discover Wolschwiller National Biological Reserve, summit and panoramic tour of Raemelsberg, Bürg Castle (CH), Mariastein pilgrimages (CH), Landskron Castle in Leymen. Lunch possible in Bürg or Mariastein (but not included)
Stage #4: LUTTER-LEYMEN: 20 km with a gradient of 660m and approximately 4 hours' walk without stops
Total distance on day four: 80 km with a gradient of 2450m
Circuit and level of difficulty:
The proposed stages require walking times ranging from 4 hours 30 mins to 6 hours. The longest stages can be shortened. Such possibilities are presented in the guidebook provided on arrival. The paths taken are easy, well maintained and marked with the logo of the Three Castles Trail combined with the signposting of the Club Vosgien. Thus, you can undertake this circuit in complete safety. A topoguide completes this marking out and provides much additional information on the natural, historical and tourist sites encountered. The route crosses the French-Swiss border so don't forget your passport.