Stroll on the Bastberg hill in Bouxwiller, Alsace

Updated on 2024-04-23

The Bastberg (Mont Saint-Sébastien in French) is a hill of the Pays de hanau located on the heights of Bouxwiller, whose summit culminates at 326m of altitude. Not very high, but enough to have a very nice view! We are here in the north of Alsace, in a region often neglected by tourists: it is not the most known region, but it is nevertheless very beautiful. As a bonus, it's the perfect place to escape the crowds and find a local atmosphere.

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!

This walk on the Bastberg hill is for example well known by the locals: it is a typical Sunday walk. It must be said that the setting is perfect to come with friends or family for a little walk, picnic and relax. It also seems that the Bastberg is one of the high energy places in Alsace: you be the judge!

The legend of the witches of Bastberg

When I told you about the Alsatian Mont Saint-Michel, I told you that a legend told that witches took off from this summit at nightfall to go to another one, the Bastberg! Logically, I also went to discover this place that intrigued me: still no witch in sight, but a walk that really charmed me!

The discovery trails of the Bastberg: geological, heritage or nature?

Three trails have been developed on the hill, each focusing on a different theme to discover this unique site: geological trail, heritage trail or nature trail, the choice is yours!

In all cases, the trails intersect and overlap on several sections: by choosing the geological trail (the longest, 6km), you get a nice overview! I didn’t find it easy to follow the precise marking of a path (there are markings but not necessarily clear in my opinion), but it is impossible to get lost: the paths are mostly parallels located at the top of the hill and the view is clear, so it is very easy to find your way.

Along the paths are placed well-made signs to learn more about the geology of the place, its fauna and flora, its history or its legends… There are also chortenThese are stone buildings several meters high, installed to show the typical rocks of the region.

A nature reserve with varied landscapes

The Bastberg is classified as a regional nature reserve and has a particular natural environment: it is an arid limestone hill, mostly covered with dry grasslands. It is the combination of the particular relief of the hill (whose slopes favor water runoff), the thinness of the soil (which is therefore very close to the rock) and a low rainfall (the Vosges mountains shielding the rain) that give it this particular arid environment, where many species of insects and plants live. An exceptional fauna and flora!

I was amazed at the variety of landscapes you can see in such a small space: some paths are lined with small trees and others offer magnificent 360 degree views of the surroundings! We can observe meadows, orchards, vineyards and further in the Alsace plain cultivated fields, and of course the Northern Vosges… It is magnificent!

The view from the top of the Bastberg is really beautiful: even if we are not very high in terms of altitude, the space is so clear that we can enjoy a superb panorama. I really loved it! And I’ll have to come back because it seems that it is the ideal place to come at sunset…

In practice: parking and ideas for visits

To reach the Bastberg, you can park on the place of the Castle of Bouxwiller and walk up: it adds about 15 minutes, but it is a small road, it is pleasant and the climb is not difficult. Otherwise, you can drive directly to the Bastberg parking lot. Once at the top, the walk will be extremely easy because there is no more difference in level: you will walk on top of the hill all the way.

If you want to plan a nice day in the area, I encourage you to plan a 1 hour visit of the historical center of Bouxwiller, then walk up to the Bastberg where you can have a picnic and finish the afternoon walk. This is a great day to discover the built and natural heritage of Bouxwiller, to take a nice walk and to have a picnic in a bucolic setting! What more could you ask for?

  • Very pleasant walk with beautiful landscapes and interesting signs
  • The panorama from the top of the Bastberg
  • Easy walk accessible for the whole family
  • Impossible to get lost!
  • Signage not always very clear

My photos of the walk at Bastberg in Alsace