The Hunsrück, which Gerach belongs to, is a wonderful region to make walks, short or long. The routes are clearly marked and perfectly accessible throughout the year. Some local walks are under 3 km, others up to 20 km. A few nice examples are the Kupfer-Jaspis-Pfad (19,4 km in the immediate vicinity of Gerach), the Mittelalterpfad (8,5 km starting in Herrstein) and the Traumschleife Hahnenbachtaltour (9,4 km starting in Bundenbach).
JUCHEM STEINBRUCH & GERACHER WASSERSCHLEIFE
From Gerach you have a wonderful view on the Juchem Steinbruch. During part of the year this quarry is open on weekends for those who want to search for minerals themselves. If you are interested in doing this, please check the dedicated page (link below), as there are a number of things you need to know and rules you need to respect before being allowed to enter.
A mere 2 km from SteinRuhe you will find the Idar-Oberstein airfield, home of the Aero-Club Idar-Oberstein. In the weekend (if weather conditions are favourable), you can take a flight over the area in a glider or a small motorised plane (starting from just 25 euro per person).
Address: Flugplatzstraße 20, 55743 Idar-Oberstein
Telephone (Flugplatz-Gaststätte): +49 (0)6781-22 501
The world capital of gemstones and minerals has a lot of wonderful treasures for you to discover. Amongst others, you can visit the Gemstone Museum, the Mineral Museum or the Felsenkirche (see below) or wander through the streets filled with picturesque little shops.
GEMSTONE MUSEUM (Deutsches Edelsteinmuseum)
Over 10.000 gemstones, minerals and objects related to those are on display in the Deutsches Edelsteinmuseum, which already exists for more than 150 years. The museum offers guided tours (in English, German, French and Dutch) and workshops (to be booked in advance – please check the museum website).
Address: Hauptstrasse 118, 55743 Idar-Oberstein
Telephone: +49 (0)6781 – 90 09 80
Opening hours: daily from 10:00 – 17:00 (closed 15/01 – 31/01)
MINERAL MUSEUM (Deutsches Mineralienmuseum)
An impressive collection of minerals and gemstones from all over the world, including some of the most radiant and biggest crystals ever brought to Europe from overseas. One of the must sees is the interesting collection of 400 million old petrified sealife creatures.
Address: Hauptstrasse 436, 55743 Idar-Oberstein
Telephone: +49 (0)6781 – 24 619
Opening hours: daily from 11:00 – 17:00 (weekend: until 17:30)
A late 15th century church, built into a natural niche in the rocks, is the most famous and remarkable building of Idar-Oberstein. As the church towers quite literally over the city, the climb towards it (and the stairs beyond) also offers you a very nice panoramic view of the city part Oberstein. By the way: if you decide to visit the Felsenkirche, make sure to take along a 1 euro coin and a 5 eurocent coin – you will find out why you need these once you get there.
Visiting the historical center of Herrstein is like taking a trip back to the middle ages. Quite a few buildings are extremely well preserved, there is a local museum and throughout the year there are several cultural activities that even bring the medieval atmosphere to live.
A nice little town (home of the Kirner Pils) that has a lot to offer, ranging from cultural activities to restaurants and shops. And of course the Kyrburg, a medieval castle built in the 10th century. The ruin on top of the hill offers wonderful views of the surrounding area, but make sure to also discover the treasures hidden below, such as the famous whisky museum.
RECREATIEF BOS ORTELSBRUCH (Erholungswald Ortelsbruch)
On a „Nature and Forest Learning Trail“ you will learn a lot about the trees and shrubs of the region. The „Trail through the fens“ lets you explore the marsh by walking over wooden bridges. Close to the parking is a wonderful playground, and in wintertime the 250 m long alpine slide nearby is very popular.
Address: L160, 54497 Morbach
WILDPARK WILDENBURG (Wildfreigehege Wildenburg)
Perfect for spending (half) a day, especially for families. Deer, raccoons, wild cats, moufflons and even wolves – you will see them all. The view from the tower next to the park is definitely worth the climb, especially if you know that there is a nice restaurant on the way down.
Address: Wildenburger Str. 22, 55758 Kempfeld
Telephone: +49 (0)6786 – 72 12
Opening hours: daily from 10:00 – 19:00 (April-October) / 10:00 – 16:00 (November-March)
HISTORICAL COPPER MINE (Fischbach)
Throughout the entire year you can visit the Historisches Kupferbergwerk, a former copper mine. From mid February until mid November there are guided tours, starting every 40 minutes all day long. The rest of the year the mine is open, but there are only 2 guided tours per day. You can also take part in a very special experience: underground wine tasting (appointment needs to be made in advance).
Address: K30, 55743 Fischbach
Telephone: +49 (0)6784 – 23 04
Open: 10:00 – 17:00 (15/02-14/11) / guided tours at 11:30 and 13:30 (15/11-14/02)
HISTORICAL MINE HERRENBERG (Bundenbach)
The historical mine Besucherbergwerk Herrenberg is an unusual attraction. In an impressive way she shows the work of the miner and brings the vistor to a world of fossils from prehistoric times. Fantastic quartz veins alternating with gray-blue shale rock draw amazing and rarely seen pictures – abstract art of Nature. Gold shiny pyrite in the walls and stalactites that have formed on the ridges, are characterized by their genuine beauty and naturalness.
Address: Ringstraße 1, 55626 Bundenbach
Telephone: +49 (0)6544 – 92 72
Open: April-October 10:00 – 13:00 and 14:00 – 17:00
Source for some of the pictures on this page: Rheinland-Pfalz Tourismus GmbH – Bildarchiv