Odenwald locates in south of Hessen, Germany. There are many hiking and cycling routes in Oldenwald area. Among them several routes are around the amazing Felsenmeer. The German word “Felsen” means rocks and “Meer” means “sea”. It refers to a large area of special rocks flowing from the hillside down to the valley. You can call it “Sea of Rocks” in English, but I think it sounds weird. I just call the giant rocks or boulders. Felsenmeer can be one of the perfect day trips from Frankfurt.
Background information about Felsenmeer
The crystalline boulders of the Felsenmeer were formed about 340 million years ago in the depth of more than 12km. During that time, two ancient continents collided and the ancient Odenwald was situated directly in the collision zone. After a serials of rock formations the rocks got a rounded shape. As a result of frost and thaw processes in combination with soil creeping, they were transported down to the valley. During the 3rd and 4th century the Romans used the rocks as quarry.
There used to have a total of eighteen of the mighty rock flows. However, some stones had been mined and turned into stairs, pedestals and gravestones. Up to 800 stone carvers worked here at the beginning of the last century. If you would like to know more information about this area please visit the information center.
This is an intermediate hiking route. The starting point is right next to the parking lot. There are three paths in the area, Path 1 is the longest while Path 2 and Path 3 are shorter. All three paths are clearly marked and it is easy to follow. It takes 30 minutes to two hours depending on which trail you hike. Along the route you can spot hundreds of ancient works by Roman-era stone cutters. Besides, the view on the top is great.
If you prefer to stay on trails you can walk your way through the stones at the main trail head called Siegfriedsquelle. But it is more fun to hop from boulder to boulder. It is like an open gym for kids and adventurers. It is also dangerous to do so. You should wear proper hiking shoes because some places are steep. Take extra precautions when you want to negotiate with the rocks.
Felsenmeer is an archaeological site and a geological wonder. The area is a popular destination for leisure guests. Some local people like to go there and have picnics. It is really a good place to take the kids out for a wild climb among the rocks. You can also combine other hiking routes in the Odenwald. It is a perfect day trip destination from Frankfurt am Main or from Darmstadt.
Seifenwiesenweg 59, 64686 Lautertal, Hesse, Germany
How to get there
From the A-5, take the B-47 highway east toward Reichenbach and Lindenfels. Once in Reichenbach, follow signs and head north toward Beedenkirchen on a winding, uphill road. The Siegfriedsquelle parking lot is just outside the town on the left.
Alternatively you can park at the other side. Follow A5 to Bergstraße in Pfungstadt. Take exit 28-Seeheim-Jugenheim from A5. Then take L3103, Balkhäuser Tal and Felsbergstraße to Felsberg parking lot. Both route take about 1 hour.