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Chestnut Trail | Stage 4

From Barbian to Bolzano

High above the Eisack Gorge, the Chestnut Trail runs through a cultural landscape and natural forests, past historic sacred buildings, remains of prehistoric settlements and old farms. Along the trail you can admire the rugged Gonderbachgraben with its waterfall and the striking earth pyramids on the Ritten. The last highlight of this stage is Runkelstein Castle, an art-historical jewel in the Bozen valley basin.
This stage of the route is very long, so it can be divided into several parts.

Route length: 33.9 km
Metres in altitude ascent: 934 m
Metres of descent: 1,498 m
Average walking time: 11:15 h

From the village centre of Barbian, the Chestnut Trail follows the asphalt road for a bit in the direction of Saubach. After about 10 minutes, you reach the new 120 m long bridge that crosses the deeply cut valley of the Ganderbachgraben.
From the bridge you experience a magnificent view of the waterfall and the walls of the Saubach Kofel. On the orographic right bank of the Gonderbach, follow the asphalted road to the beautifully situated hamlet of Saubach (800 m, Saubacher Hof inn). Continuing along the road, we come to the farms Bischof and Penn, branching off to the left there, the route leads along a field path below the road (the signposted access from Kollmann leads up here). Shortly before the Diktelegraben, the path re-joins the road. After the bridge, directly on the municipal border to Ritten, you reach a shady rocky area and hike along the road until you reach the Rotwand farms.

Note: A transfer of the "Keschtnweg" from the asphalt road to a car-free hiking trail is being planned (as of April 2021).

The hike continues along the road in the direction of Lengstein. At the pond turn left into the farm entrance of the Pirchnerhof farm and after a few metres turn right onto the hiking trail. A short ascent, past the well-marked "Schalensteinen" stones, leads to the Church of St. Verena in Ritten (889 m). Following the Cross Trail, you hike down an atmospheric path to the Penzl farm (beautiful boutique B&B Penzl9).
After the Penzl farm, follow the road for a short distance to Braun and turn left onto the farm road, at the next farm downhill to Weidacher and on a field path to Gasthof Zuner (790 m, St. Andrew's Church on the nearby hill). This is where the trail from Atzwang leads up. An equally signposted trail connects here from Lengstein down.

After a short ascent on the Street Höfestraße, we follow a field path again at Schmalzer Hof (left) to Steidacher Hof in the hamlet of Antlas (810 m). The Chestnut Trail leads here on the Höfestraße south side around the mountain ridge to the Finsterbachgraben. The ascent now overcomes a slope slightly above a field path until you reach Frankner Hof farm (898 m), below Lengstein. Here the road leads downhill to the Köblbachgraben, after the house by the stream you overcome the counter ascent on a field path until you reach the Vigl Hof farm. Now the Chestnut Trail leads downhill and uphill again and again through the Finsterbachgraben and at the Joggum farm via a forest path slightly uphill to the Schmaleich farm (950 m). Now follow the downhill farm road through the forest, past the "Atzwanger Aussicht" (wonderful view) and hike in switchbacks to the Rieserhof farm. A field path runs through the Siffianer Graben to the Niederstätter and on the road briefly downhill to the Höfegruppe in the Siffianer Leitach (826m, accommodation options). Here the signposted climb from Steg joins the Chestnut Trail.
Below Siffian, the trail leads downhill to the right on a paved field path to the Rielingerhof (stop for refreshments/overnight stay). You hike directly past the beautiful wine farm and cross the forest above the Stein castle ruins and then the Rösslerbachgraben (760 m). The counter-ascent leads across the shady slope to the fields
near Tasenegger and to the chestnut grove above these fields. Soon you reach the farmsteads of Melterer and Blümler and soon cross the Gasterer Graben, where the Earth Pyramids of Unterinn rise from the earth.
After a rest at this Rittner sight, you reach the orchards of Hinterhuber Hof farm and follow the slightly ascending Höfestraße, which shortly afterwards leads into the “Dorfstraße”, which leads into the village centre (refreshments/accommodation).

At the parish church of St. Lucia (910 m), follow the Dorfgasse to the bus stop on the Main Street of Ritten. Cross the car park and walk past the farms of the hamlet of Eschenbach until you reach the Sulzner farm (market garden).
Walk through the forest over a rocky step and reach the Partschuner farm (996 m). From there, take the asphalted farm access road and descend in two bends to Signat (848 m). After crossing the road in the small village centre of Signat (church and inn), you hike on a slight incline to the end of the access road at Pieracher Hof farm. Now the trail leads to the lower edge of the meadow and then into a steeper stage of forest down into the sloping terrain to the Rivelaunbach stream in the Katzenbachgraben (745 m). After crossing the stream (an abandoned farm used to stand here), you hike past beautiful chestnut trees until the Keschtnweg trail joins a forest road (to the right you can hike to Oberbozen - Rittner cable car mountain station).

Stay left and follow the access road to the Spornbergerhof farm (871 m), which is situated freely on a hilltop. After passing the Spornberger farm, the steep, partly concrete road towards Bozen begins. After about 600 m, the trail branches off to the right at an old viaduct of the abandoned Rittner cogwheel railway and continues moderately steeply, after a crossing with a farm road, again to the right along a trail to the Ebnicherhof farm (832 m, stop for refreshments). From the Ebnicherhof farm, walk along the slightly ascending access road to the right in a westerly direction until you turn left after about 550 m (marked 2 A). Now the descent into the Bozen valley basin begins, which leads along the beautiful, sun-exposed and partly paved footpath to above the "Peter Ploner" farmhouse and further down to a distinctive bend.
Directly at the bend, follow the wide path to the right and, after a flat stretch, reach a water reservoir above the vineyards of St. Peter (junction with path no. 3 - Nesslbrunnsteig). Stay on the wide path and hike straight ahead until the path meets the asphalt castle driveway via a few road bends. Stay to the right and hike about 300 m past beautiful vineyards until you reach Runkelstein Castle.

From Runkelstein Castle, you now descend the paved footpath to the valley road/bus stop and cycle path.
More information
Pecularities along the path | Stage 4
How to arrive & parking | Stage 4
Take the A 22 motorway – Exit: Klausen/Gröden.
Continue to Klausen or Bozen to Waidbruck and to Barbian.

In Barbian (limited parking available).

Public transport:
With international rail connections to Brixen or Bozen and with regional trains to Waidbruck and with the bus to Barbian.

For stage destination RITTEN
How to get there:
Take the A 22 motorway -Exit: Bozen-Nord.
Continue to Bozen-Rentsch to the Ritten to Unterinn or Lengstein.

In the Ritten villages

Public transport:
With international train connections to Bozen and with the Ritten cable car to Oberbozen - Klobenstein. Or with the regular bus to Unterinn-Klobenstein or Lengstein.
Train No 100 Bozen, train station to Waidbruck, train station
Bus No 346 Waidbruck, train station to Barbian village

Other accesses:
Cable car No 161 Ritten, Oberbozen - Bozen, 5-minutes-walk to Bozen, train station
Bus No 163 Ritten, Oberbozen - Bozen
Bus No 348 Lengstein - Barbian
Bus No 165 Lengstein - Bozen (Rentsch), Change to Bus no 350 Bozen Rentsch - Waidbruck, train station
Bus No 12 Bozen, Runkelstein - Cable car Jenesien, Change to Bus no 150 Cable car Jenesien - Bozen, train station
Accommodations & stops | Stage 4
Rosengartenstraße 30 Via Rosengarten
Tel. +39 339 373 8914

Biokräuterhof Oberpalwitterhof
Rosengartenstraße 28 Via Rosengarten
Tel. +39 0471 653 111 // +39 333 238 86 32

Pension Garni Kircher Sepp
Rosengartenstraße 27 Via Rosengarten
Tel. 0471 650 074

Aichnerweg 2 Via Aichner
Tel. +39 0471 650 115 // +39 340 468 99 80

Hotel Haus an der Luck
Rosengartenstraße 11 Via Rosengarten
Tel. +39 0471 650 030

Haus - Casa Hofer
Oberweger 4
Tel. +39 349 384 7156

Hotel Barbianerhof
Ackerweg 19 Via dei Campi
Tel. +39 0471 654 299

Gasthof - Albergo Zur Traube
Dorf 14 Paese
Tel. +39 0471 650 000
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Hotel Rösslwirt
Dorf 6 Paese
Tel. +39 0471 654 188
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Gasthof - Albergo Zum Englwirt
Dorf 2 Paese
Tel. +39 0471 654 283 // +39 331 4007653
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Haus - Casa Tirol
Ganderbachstrasse 1 Via Rio Gondo
Tel. +39 328 483 9339

Haus - Casa Pferscher
Wasserfallweg 4 Via delle Cascate
Tel. +39 0471 654 257
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Ganderbachstraße 2 Via Rio Gondo
Tel. +39 0471 653 009

Ganderbachstraße 3 Via Rio Gondo
Tel. +39 0471 654 290

Haus - Casa Urban B&B
Wasserfallweg 1 Via delle Cascate
Tel. +39 0471 654 106

Ganderbachstraße 10 Via Rio Gondo
Tel. +39 348 252 2876

Ganderbachstraße 12 Via Rio Gondo
Tel. +39 0471 654 189 // +39 348 185 9123

Ganderbachstraße 18 Via Rio Gondo
Tel. +39 349 159 8931

Saubach 10 San Ingenuino
Tel. +39 0471 654 344

Saubach 22 San Ingenuino
Tel. + 39 349 124 8191 // +39 339 867 0798

Saubach 17 San Ingenuino
Tel. +39 0471 654 032 // +39 347 927 4760

Aktiv-und Biourlaub Pennhof
Saubach 21 San Ingenuino
Tel. +39 0471 654 498

Pension Schloss Friedburg
Am Kuntersweg 6 Via Kunter
Tel. + 39 0471 654 364
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Haus Penzl
Rotwand 8, Lengstein - Longostagno
Tel. +39 335 598 0001

Nature Apartment Thalerhof
Hauptstraße 18 Via Principale
Unterinn - Auna di Sotto
Tel. +39 342 161 8416

Gasthaus - Albergo Fleier
Hauptstraße 24 Via Principale
Unterinn - Auna di Sotto
Tel. +39 0471 359 047
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Gasthaus - Albergo Wunder
Dorf 1 Paese
Unterinn - Auna di Sotto
Tel. +39 0471 180 0140
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Oberplatten 4a
Unterinn - Auna di Sotto
Tel. +39 0471 365 381

Oberplatten 6
Unterinn - Auna di Sotto
Tel. +39 334 919 7245

Römerweg 25
Unterinn - Auna di Sotto
Tel. +39 328 416 2148

Gasthof - Albergo Signaterhof
Signat 168 Signato
Tel. +39 0471 365 353
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Antlas 17
Lengstein - Longostagno
Tel. +39 0471 349 006
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Rotwand 14
Lengstein - Longostagno
Tel. +39 334 304 9857

Antlas 11
Lengstein - Longostagno
Tel. +39 377 116 6544

Rotwand 24
Lengstein - Longostagno
Tel. +39 339 880 9827

Siffianer Leitach 7
Klobenstein - Collalbo
Tel. +39 0471 356 274
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Siffianer Leitach 12
Klobenstein - Collalbo
Tel. +39 348 186 1616
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Weinbergweg 9
Atzwang - Campodazzo
Tel. +39 340 224 2513
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Erdpyramidenweg 8
Oberbozen - Soprabolzano
Tel. +39 333 179 9935

Obermagdalena 1 Via S. Maddalena di Sopra
Tel. +39 0471 973 196
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Hotel Hanny
St. Peter 4 S. Pietro
Tel. +39 0471 973 498

Burgschänke Schloss Runkelstein
Kaiser-Franz-Josef-Weg 1 Sentiero Imperatore Francesco Giuseppe
Tel. +39 375 604 5180