Website cookies We believe in doing right by our customers. Like most websites, ours uses cookies, but rest assured that we don’t set more than we need to and we never gather information that directly identifies you. By accepting all cookies, you’ll benefit from extra functionality such as saving a wishlist, and you’ll help us to improve the site and our advertising. If you would still prefer us to set only essential cookies, you can. You can change your preference at any time by clicking on the ‘cookies’ link at the foot of the page. Learn more


The Harz Mountains

The spiritual heart of Germany
Deep-rooted legends and intriguing history await in the mystical mountains of northern Germany, where this self-guided hotel-to-hotel walk – with luggage transfers included – takes in several beautifully preserved towns and features a ride on the Brockenbahn railway.

Holiday information


A walking holiday in the Harz Mountains

Immortalised by Goethe as the meeting place of witches in Faust, the brooding mass of the Brocken is part of Germany’s cultural identity, its place in people’s hearts cemented by recent years of division.
Visible for miles around, it rises from the Harz uplands, whose forests, small lakes, rock formations and caves are said to be inhabited by goblins, demons and witches.
You are, however, more likely to spot signs of red deer, wild boar and lynxes as you walk from the colourful twin mining towns of Clausthal-Zellerfeld in the west to half-timbered Wernigerode in the east. Walking is relatively easy over the undulating uplands, especially given the network of nostalgic narrow-gauge railways that can be used to shorten distances. The same is true of navigation, thanks to the numerous signposted trails which crisscross this German walkers’ paradise.


The key to Inntravel holidays is flexibility. You can start on the day of your choice, and are free to add extra nights.
  • The average maximum daytime temperatures and monthly rainfall relate to the nearest weather station and are intended as a guide only.
    Average temperatures and rainfall
      Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
    °C 3 4 8 13 18 21 22 22 19 14 8 4
    mm 53 41 47 51 62 74 73 70 53 48 55 61
  • Arrival in Clausthal-Zellerfeld
    Night 1: at Hotel zum Harzer (the first of two nights here).
    As your first night’s accommodation is on the day of travel, Day 1 is your first day of walking.

    The regular – and inexpensive – narrow-gauge trains are central to the identity of the Harz and a definite highlight of this holiday. Please pay locally for all rail (and bus) journeys mentioned in the itinerary other than the trip on the Brockenbahn railway. Hotel transfers at the start of walks are included in the holiday price. The distances and timings do not include train journeys or transfers.
  • Choice of walks from Clausthal-Zellerfeld: both 17km

    Circular walk via UNESCO World Heritage Site: 17km, 6hrs; ascent 300m / descent 330m
    Clausthal-Zellerfeld was once a mining village and a prominent legacy of these once-prosperous mines is the system of waterways that were built to power the lifts and pumps. So ingenious was the network, known as the Upper Harz Water Management System, that it is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the first of our two suggested walks offers you the opportunity to explore part of it. Starting with a short transfer, the route takes you south of town, following water channels connecting the ‘ponds’ and then returning through the centre of Clausthal-Zellerfeld, passing the blue clapboard Marktkirche, the largest wooden church in Germany whose stark, whitewashed interior is offset by an ornate altar and pulpit.

    Circular walk via Hahnenklee: 17km, 6.5hrs; ascent / descent 480m
    The second option heads north, leading through forested upland before a steep descent into the picturesque town of Wildemann. You then follow a stream through the Grumbach valley to the small resort of Hahnenklee, with its Norwegian-style stave church. Made entirely from local wood, it resembles an elaborate, multi-tiered chocolate cake. The return route takes you through forests and meadows, crossing the open heights of Bockswieser Höhe just north of Zellerfeld.

    Explore Clausthal-Zellerfeld
    If you prefer not to walk on your first day, you can take time to explore Clausthal-Zellerfeld, known for its brightly coloured wooden houses. Silver, tin and zinc are no longer mined here, but there are various reminders of the town’s mining roots, including a fascinating museum. There's also the option to catch a bus to the nearby town of Goslar and the Rammelsberg Mines, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
    The circular walk via Hahnenklee
    Circular walk via UNESCO World Heritage Site: 17km
    Circular walk via Hahnenklee: 17km
  • Clausthal-Zellerfeld to Torfhaus: 18.5km, 7hrs; ascent 560m / descent 390m
    Today’s route starts with a short transfer, after which you join the long-distance Harzer Hexen Stieg (Witches’ Trail) eastwards on a winding route that follows ancient waterways through forest, at one point crossing a 750-metre earthen aqueduct built in 1732. Though the route rises steadily, the ascent is almost indiscernible as the trail follows the contours of the land almost the whole way, with views opening in the final stages to the Brocken massif. You are now in the Harz National Park, and you spend the night at the Torfhaus Harzresort in Torfhaus, from where the Brocken seems so close, you could almost touch it.
    The Harzer Hexen Stieg (Witches' Trail)
    Clausthal-Zellerfeld to Torfhaus: 18.5km
  • Torfhaus to Mandelholz: 13km, 5hrs; ascent 385m / descent 135m
    Today you get the opportunity to do just that – you follow the route taken by Goethe across marshland and partially forested moorland up to the summit (1,142 metres). Take time to reflect on the spiritual significance of this ‘mountain of the German people’, before catching the Brockenbahn narrow-gauge steam train for the scenic 50-minute journey (included) down to Drei Annen Hohne. From the station, a shorter, second leg of the walk takes you through mixed forest to Mandelholz and the Grüne Tanne, your base for two nights.
    Approaching Brocken summit on the route from Torfhaus to Mandelholz
    Torfhaus to Brocken summit: 9km
    Drei Annen Hohne to Mandelholz: 4km
  • Linear walk from Sorge to Mandelholz: 19km, 7hrs; ascent 240m / descent 680m
    You’ll need an early start today to catch the steam train from Elend to Sorge for the start of this thought-provoking walk around the former border between East and West Germany. Before leaving Sorge, take time to visit its open-air museum. Elements of the original border defences have been rebuilt to give a very authentic sense of this recent chapter in German history. From here, the route leads along the old border, now a pretty river valley, to reach the resort of Braunlage and its beautiful Kurpark. Ride in a gondola to the 971-metre summit of Wurmberg for the long descent to Elend past some of the region’s spectacular rock formations. The final leg back to Mandelholz is along a pretty river. The walk can be shortened by returning from Braunlage to Elend by bus, and then on foot back to Mandelholz.

    We offer an alternative, lower-level ending in case of poor weather (ascent 300m / descent 340m).
    Sorge to Braunlage: 10km
    Wurmberg to Mandelholz: 9km
  • Mandelholz to Wernigerode: 17km, 6.5hrs; ascent 520m / descent 700m
    Your final destination is the Hotel Weisser Hirsch in Wernigerode, which perches on the edge of the Harz plateau. To reach it, you walk alongside a reservoir before crossing forest and ascending into the National Park, passing several major rock outcrops to reach a spectacularly sited hotel above waterfalls in a river gorge. You descend through the gorge to a railway station, from where it is just a 15-minute train ride into Wernigerode. The nostalgic steam train is a fitting way to arrive in this ancient town, which is famed for its rows of immaculate old houses and pretty gardens.
    Arrive in Wernigerode by steam train
    Mandelholz to Wernigerode: 17km
  • Choice of walks from Wernigerode: 14km or 17.5km

    Linear walk from Ilsenburg via Drübeck: 14km, 5hrs; ascent 255m / descent 265m
    This first option starts by train to the pretty town of Ilsenburg, complete with a monastery, before following part of the Klosterwanderweg (Monastery Trail) through parkland and forest back to Wernigerode, via Drübeck, another town with an abbey.

    Circular walk via Schloss Wernigerode: 17.5km, 7hrs; ascent / descent 500m
    The second is a circuit from Wernigerode that winds uphill to the nearby Schloss Wernigerode, a 12th-century medieval castle built to provide protection for the German Kaisers on hunting forays into the Harz, before exploring glorious deciduous woodland unlike that seen on any of the previous walks.

    Explore Wernigerode
    Alternatively, you could spend your last day exploring Wernigerode’s delightful medieval centre – the highlight of which is the fairy tale-like town hall with its twin spires – and its impressive castle.
    Explore the medieval streets of Wernigerode
    Linear walk from Ilsenburg via Drübeck: 14km
    Circular walk via Schloss Wernigerode: 17.5km


We have found some friendly, well-placed hotels for your exploration of the Harz.

Please note: most beds in German hotels are normally one large base with two mattresses/duvets. We refer to these as 'Austrian Twins' and they are locally regarded to serve requests for both double and twin bedded rooms. Separate twin beds or traditional double beds with one large mattress are rare and cannot be guaranteed.

Extend your stay



We are currently unable to take bookings for this holiday for 2023. There are, however, many other holidays for which we are taking advance bookings, so why not browse our site some more?
Prices & travel options
All prices are in £ sterling (GBP). If you'd like to see what they equate to in your currency, use the converter. For general information on pricing, see the 'your holiday price explained' page.
Currency converter

We can only accept payment in GBP, but you can use this converter to find out how much the holiday equates to in your own currency.

Please enter an amount Please enter a valid amount British Pound Sterling (GBP)
Currency is required
NB: this should be used as a guide only. Fluctuations in exchange rates could result in significant variation by the time you come to pay.
  • 7 nights: 07 May 2022 - 09 October 2022

    Start any day | End by latest date(s) shown above

    Starting Price Single room
    7 May - 12 Jun 2022 £935 £180
    13 Jun - 31 Aug 2022 £965 £185
    1 Sep - 2 Oct 2022 £935 £180
    3rd & 4th person discount -£30
    Single traveller supplement £30

    Includes accommodation, meals and services integral to the holiday as described, plus walking notes and maps, but no travel from the UK, nor any connecting travel from the airport unless stated below.

    Book your flights through us and we'll find the best route and times to suit you. Please contact us to find out more about our flight booking service. We can also book connecting travel - see below.

    7 nights: 07 May 2022 - 09 October 2022

    Start any day | End by latest date(s) shown above

    Starting Price Single room
    7 May - 12 Jun 2022 £1345 £180
    13 Jun - 31 Aug 2022 £1390 £185
    1 Sep - 2 Oct 2022 £1345 £180
    3rd & 4th person discount -£55
    Single traveller supplement £55

    Includes all elements in the 'walk price', plus standard-class travel by Eurostar from London St Pancras or Ebbsfleet International to Lille or Paris, with onward travel as described below.

    Included travel from the UK: UK–Brussels (Eurostar), Brussels–Goslar (Thalys/ICE & regional rail), approx. duration 9h55 plus 0h30 taxi transfer. Home, Wernigerode–Brussels (Thalys/ICE & regional rail), Brussels-UK (Eurostar), approx. duration 11h30 plus 0h05 taxi transfer.
    > More about 'by rail' prices
    > The 'rail experience': what to expect

    If you book your holiday less than 10 months in advance of your travel date, seats may no longer be available at the tariffs on which our prices are based, but we may be able to offer you seats on the same services at a supplement.

    7 nights: 07 May 2022 - 09 October 2022

    Start any day | End by latest date(s) shown above

    Starting Price Single room
    7 May - 12 Jun 2022 £1085 £180
    13 Jun - 31 Aug 2022 £1115 £185
    1 Sep - 2 Oct 2022 £1085 £180
    3rd & 4th person discount -£145
    Single traveller supplement £145

    Includes all elements in the 'walk price', plus a return Channel crossing between Folkestone and Calais with Eurotunnel for your party and one car.

    We also include a transfer back to the first hotel at the end of your holiday to collect your car.
    > More information about travelling self-drive

    A supplement of £65 per car per single journey applies for outbound travel on 1-2, 8-9, 14-15 & 29-30 April, as well as for inbound travel on 9-10, 16-18 & 23-24 April. A supplement of £42 per car per single journey applies for outbound travel on 27-28 May; 2-3 Jun; 15-16, 22-23 & 29-30 Jul; 5-6, 12-13, 19-20 & 26-27 Aug; and 21-22 Oct, as well as for inbound travel on 2 May; 4-5 Jun; 30-31 Jul; 6-7, 13-14, 20-21 & 27-29 Aug; 3-4 Sep; and 29-30 Oct.

  • Room upgrades (£ per person per night)

    Torfhaus Harzresort, Torfhaus
    'Komfort': 07 May - 09 Oct 2022 £12
    Hotel Weisser Hirsch, Wernigerode
    'Comfort': 07 May - 09 Oct 2022 £14
    Deluxe: 07 May - 09 Oct 2022 £42
    Superior with market view: 07 May - 09 Oct 2022 £22

    Extra nights (£ per person per night) in a double or single room

    Hotel zum Harzer, Clausthal-Zellerfeld (B&B) Double room Single room
    07 May - 09 Oct 2022 £62 £85
    Hotel Weisser Hirsch, Wernigerode (B&B) Double room Single room
    07 May - 09 Oct 2022 £92 £130
    Hannover, Berlin or Hamburg
    As an alternative to flying, we can arrange rail travel from London

    Travelling from the UK

    Travelling from outside the UK

    If you are flying from outside Europe,  we recommend flying via Berlin. To discuss onward connecting travel to the start of your holiday, please contact us.

    Outward route Airline
    Birmingham - Hamburg Eurowings 
    Outward route Airline
    Bristol - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet 
    Outward route Airline
    Nottingham East Midlands - Berlin Brandenburg Ryanair 
    Outward route Airline
    Edinburgh - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet 
    Edinburgh - Hamburg easyJet 
    Outward route Airline
    Glasgow - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet,  Ryanair 
    Outward route Airline
    Leeds Bradford - Berlin Brandenbrug (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Outward route Airline
    Liverpool - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet 
    Outward route Airline
    London City - Berlin Brandenburg British Airways 
    London City - Hamburg British Airways 
    Outward route Airline
    Gatwick - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet 
    Gatwick - Hamburg easyJet 
    Outward route Airline
    Heathrow - Berlin Brandenburg British Airways,  Eurowings 
    Heathrow - Hamburg British Airways,  Eurowings 
    Heathrow - Hannover British Airways 
    Outward route Airline
    Luton - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet 
    Luton - Hamburg easyJet 
    Outward route Airline
    London Southend - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet 
    Outward route Airline
    Stansted - Berlin Brandenburg Ryanair 
    Stansted - Hannover Eurowings 
    Outward route Airline
    Manchester - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet,  Ryanair 
    Manchester - Hamburg easyJet,  Eurowings 
    Outward route Airline
    Newcastle - Berlin Brandenburg easyJet 
    Travelling from outside the UK

    If you are flying from outside Europe,  we recommend flying via Berlin. To discuss onward connecting travel to the start of your holiday, please contact us.

    This list of flight options should be used as a guide only, and you should check each airline’s website for current routes, frequency and schedules. Not all flights operate daily, and may not run for the entire season. You should also heed the latest flight arrival time and earliest flight departure time stated in the connecting travel section, as it may not be possible to arrange connecting travel outside these times. Please do not book your flights until we have confirmed your accommodation to you. Alternatively, our expert reservations team will be happy to offer advice and to make flight bookings for you for any of the options listed above except those operated by Ryanair. We charge £35 per person for our flight booking service. Your flights are then covered by our package-booking conditions, which give you greater protection in the event of delay or cancellation, as well as providing ATOL cover.

  • Prices below are based on 2 people travelling together. If you are travelling solo or as a party of 3 or more and our arrangements include a taxi, please contact us for prices; additional passengers often pay less.

    Unless otherwise stated, connecting travel by rail or bus tends to be from the city centre station, rather than from its airport, and connections between the two should be paid for locally.

    Connecting travel options - flying via Berlin Brandenburg

    Outward route Price per person Latest flight
    arrival time
    rail Berlin HB to Goslar (2h45), taxi Goslar to hotel (0h30) £120 1445
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    taxi hotel to Wernigerode (0h05), rail Wernigerode to Berlin HB (3h10) £80 1445

    Connecting travel options - flying via Hannover

    Outward route Price per person Latest flight
    arrival time
    direct taxi Hannover airport to hotel (1h30) £125 1615
    rail Hannover HB to Goslar (1h05), taxi Goslar to hotel (0h30) £53 1515
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    taxi hotel to Wernigerode (0h05), rail Wernigerode to Hannover HB (1h50) £38 1430

    Connecting travel options - flying via Hamburg

    Outward route Price per person Latest flight
    arrival time
    rail Hamburg Hbf to Goslar (3h30), taxi Goslar to hotel (0h30) £105 1415
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    taxi hotel to Wernigerode (0h05), rail Wernigerode to Hamburg Hbf (3h20) £90 1400
What is included
  • 7 nights
  • 3 dinners
    4 picnics
    7 breakfasts
  • luggage transported
  • route notes and maps
  • GPS navigation
  • ticket for the Brockenbahn

If you've experienced this holiday first hand, why not write a review?

We are keen for as many customers as possible to review their holiday. To make it easier to do so, we include a specific review section on our post-holiday questionnaire, and this is what we publish here, unedited. Read our full review policy >



If you have any questions relating to this or any other Inntravel holiday, our friendly travel experts will be happy to help. You might also find our General FAQs section helpful.
  • If your holiday plans go awry because of Coronavirus, rest assured that we’ll do right by you. Since the start of the pandemic, our flexible booking policy and prompt issuing of refunds to customers who prefer not to defer their holiday have earned us high praise in the national press.
  • We sincerely hope that your holiday experience will be as enjoyable as it would have been before the pandemic – walking holidays are ideal in these times of social distancing, and we’re not operating holidays if the key highlights can no longer be delivered – but, naturally, there will be some changes to ensure your and other people’s safety, not least proving your vaccination status or taking a test in order to travel.
    Your holiday experience: what to expect >
    Safety measures being taken by hoteliers & others >
    Entry requirements for non-UK destinations & for re-entering the UK >
  • We’ll send you route notes and maps 2-3 weeks before your holiday. The route notes not only contain directions to get from A to B, but also include practical information about places of interest and eateries along each route, plus cultural information about the area. If/when you are moving between hotels, you leave your luggage in reception as you leave, and it will be transferred ahead to your next accommodation, meaning that all you need to take with you are a camera, sun cream, drinks, food and waterproofs.

    For more detailed information, see our walking holidays in Europe page.
  • Yes, prior to going on holiday you will be able to download GPX tracks so that you can follow your route on your smartphone or dedicated GPS device if you wish. It’s entirely up to you whether or not you use them – our detailed, step-by-step route notes remain the principal means of guiding you from A to B – but we provide them as a secondary means of navigation for additional reassurance when walking.
  • We can book a wide range of routes from the UK with a variety of airlines (but not, currently, with Ryanair). As well as being more convenient for you to book all elements of your holiday together, it also means that we’ll accept liability for your travel arrangements, so if things go wrong, such as the airline going bust, we’ll make suitable alternative arrangements for you. The fee for this service is £35 per person (£15 for children aged 2-11). More information on flights >
  • We can’t book flights that originate outside the UK, but if you wanted to book your own flights to London (or elsewhere in the UK), we can make all onward travel arrangements (including flights) from there. Alternatively, if you are booking your own flights to an airport in continental Europe that’s appropriate for your holiday, we can book onward rail travel and/or taxis. More information about how we can tailor holidays for customers outside the UK >
  • Since our holidays are self-guided, we recommend calling us for a chat about your plans before making a booking, especially if it’s the first time you’ve booked with us.
    The price panel shows the supplement for a single room and also the single traveller charge (this covers (luggage) transfers and other costs which are usually shared between two people).
  • Once you’ve decided on your exact itinerary (our travel experts will be happy to offer advice), you need to provide us with your party’s details, either by phone or via our booking form. At this point we also ask you to pay a deposit so that we can secure a room for you immediately on confirming availability with the hotel(s). If it turns out that we can’t secure the accommodation for the holiday you’ve requested, or offer an acceptable alternative, we’ll refund your deposit promptly and in full. After booking your accommodation and other key elements, we'll then book your travel (or you can do so if you’re making your own arrangements) and send you a Booking Confirmation and Invoice.

    More information about the booking process >
    Information about accommodation, general practicalities and more >
    Booking conditions >
  • Yes, it’s something we insist on, even for holidays in the UK. The vast majority of holidays go smoothly, but when things go wrong, it can be expensive to put them right. Buying a new pair of walking boots after your suitcase is stolen mightn’t seem so bad, but the bill for being airlifted down from a mountain with a broken leg or flown home while still recovering from an illness or accident can cost tens of thousands of pounds.

    You don’t have to take out a policy with our recommended provider (if you live outside the UK you’ll definitely need to make your own arrangements, as the policy is only for UK residents), but you do need to make sure that you’re covered for medical emergencies – including falling ill with Covid-19 while on holiday – and repatriation. We also recommend that you are covered for other eventualities, such as cancellation and loss of luggage and passports.

    We'll ask you for the details of your policy (insurer, policy number and medical emergency phone number) so that we can help out if the worst happens while you are on holiday. It's up to you, though, to check that your policy covers the activities you'll be doing on holiday and that it is adequate for your own individual needs; we don't check alternative policies.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure you are in possession of the correct travel documents, with the correct validity. If you’re a UK citizen, you need a full British passport to travel to Germany, but not a visa. If you are a citizen of another country, you’ll need to check requirements with the national embassy or your own consulate.

    Current information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice for UK citizens can be found through the Travel Health Pro website. You must make sure you have adequate insurance cover for illness, accidents and repatriation (see the insurance question). You should also apply for a Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) if your EHIC has expired (if you have a still-valid EHIC, you can use this until it expires).
  • The official language is German. The currency is the Euro. German time is GMT/UTC + 1. It uses Daylight Saving Time, so in summer is on BST + 1.
  • For information on the practicalities of travel now that the UK is no longer part of the European Union, visit

    At Inntravel we work in close partnership with our hoteliers, taxi drivers and other local suppliers to provide our self-guided holidays directly to you. We are entirely confident that you will continue to receive the usual warm welcome from them, regardless of what is happening in the European political sphere.
  • The UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) provides up-to-date, country-by-country travel advice, as well as information on security, local laws, passports and visas for UK citizens.

    If you live outside the UK, see our essential travel information page for a list of relevant websites.
  • You are the best judge of your child’s/children’s capabilities. We are happy to take bookings for families of older children/teenagers if they walk regularly, love the outdoors and are comfortable with the distances and ascent/descent involved. Please note that the bedrooms at most of the accommodation we use will normally only sleep a maximum of 3 people, and sometimes only 2.
Last fetch time is : 6/26/2022 6:39:25 PM