Mont Saint-Michel of Alsace – Visit and hike

Updated on 2024-04-23

Go hiking at Mont-Saint-Michel? Yes, but in the Bas-Rhin in Alsace, please! I discovered this place (unusual by its name already) by my friend Greg of the blog Rutsch. He used to go there when he was younger and had fond memories of the place. I understand why, I too was really seduced by the Alsatian Mont Saint-Michel, located in Saint-Jean-Saverne (near Saverne), at the very south of the Vosges du Nord regional natural park . It is a perfect place for a nice walk in Alsace!

Laurène is the blog's creator. Originally from Brittany but now living in Alsace, she has fallen in love with her adopted region and loves exploring its every nook and cranny to unearth great ideas to share with you!

The Mont St Michel, a sacred place in Saint-Jean saverne

This magnificent rocky promontory, located at an altitude of 438m, has been occupied for a long time by humans (4,000 years before our era!). It is indeed a sacred place, which served as a place of pagan worship and which would have even been a point of gatherings of witches… The Mont Saint-Michel would also be an important energetic place, since it is at the crossing point of several telluric currents.

The Mont Saint-Michel is an ideal place to have a picnic in a peaceful atmosphere while enjoying a panoramic view… That’s what we did just before walking, what a pleasure!

Saint Michael’s Chapel

Throned in the middle of this beautiful and peaceful place, you will see upon arrival the Saint-Michel chapel, which is not always open. However, the interior is not extraordinary, even if there are some beautiful paintings and sculptures to admire.

Witches’ circle

According to the legend, witches used to fly on their broomsticks from the “witches’ circle” (Hexenkreiss), the remains of which you will see at Mont Saint-Michel, to the Bastberg!

The view from the witches’ circle and the orientation table next to it is really magnificent: you can see Saverne and its surroundings and even the German Black Forest in the distance.

Fairy cave

Further down, it is possible to admire the Grotte aux Fées, also known as the grotte aux sorcières. There is an astonishing sarcophagus dug in the middle of the cave: it is an anthropomorphic tomb carved in the rock, where the popular tradition sees the tomb of Itha the witch, walled up alive on the orders of her husband horrified by the evil practices of his wife.

Another curiosity is the “witches’ hole” (hexenloch), an opening in the rock supposed to cure fevers, toothaches and headaches, and to promote happy and fertile marriages (you will understand why by observing the shape of this opening!).

Idea for a hike around the Mont St Michel

If you can’t fly away on a broom, you can choose to hike around the Mont Saint-Michel. The hiking trails are numerous and it is possible to do several routes, but we chose the archaeological circuit. From the chapel, you have to go away a little bit in the direction of the Club Vosgien’s chalet to find the signs indicating the path of the archeological circuit and then follow the “red disk” markings all along. Then, it’s off for a 9km walk, which lasts approximately 2h30 without counting the breaks. No particular difficulty to report, there is only 150m of difference in altitude and the climbs are never long or steep.

This hiking itinerary is really beautiful and you don’t need to be an archaeology fan to appreciate it: the landscapes discovered along the paths are already worth it! We walk in the heart of a beautiful forest while benefiting regularly from superb panoramas, it is very pleasant.

On the side of the curiosities along the way, we find of course archaeological remains. I didn’t observe all of them closely to be honest, but among those that impressed me, I would mention the Castle Warthenbergwhose ruins are massive and from which one has a beautiful panorama (on a clear day, one can even see the Strasbourg cathedral), as well as the PlattenwegThis is the remnant of an ancient Gallo-Roman paved road used until the Middle Ages.

  • Discover the Mont Saint-Michel, a beautiful and peaceful place
  • Very nice circuit in the forest with beautiful panoramas
  • You won’t be the only one to come and have a picnic 😉

My photos of the archeological circuit of the Mont Saint-Michel