Premium Hiking Trails
Premium Hiking Trails
Premium Hiking Trails are circular and linear trails that are not only excellently marked, but additionally have a particularly high experience value. On Premium Hiking Trails, a balanced and beautiful hiking experience is guaranteed. The trails are shaped by pleasant surfaces and paths, a selected design with great views, beautiful forest scapes, water bodies, rock structures, well-tended rest areas, cultural and historical gems, and many other diverse aspects, all of which make hiking on Premium Hiking Trails a special pleasure.
- Leaflet Hiking Certificate (in German) (.pdf, 801 KB)
Quality over quantity
The Hiking Certificate renders the quality of a hiking trail quantitatively measurable on the basis of an extensive catalogue of criteria: it is our aim to assess the strengths and weaknesses of a hiking trail as precisely and objectively as possible. The catalogue contains quality criteria for an eventful hiking infrastructure of the hiking trails themselves, but also of their surroundings. Not only the beautiful, but also the critical aspects of a trail are evaluated without reservation. The resulting analysis of strengths and weaknesses allows for targeted improvements with the aim of a special hiking experience and an increased competitive capacity.
The criteria are regularly reviewed and further developed on the basis of regular surveys of hikers (Hiking Monitor).
Hiking certificate for Europe and beyond
In recent years, the demand for Premium Trails has also increased in neighboring European countries. Since February 2011, the German Hiking Certificate for Premium Trails has been protected throughout Europe and is awarded in the respective national languages.
Escaping from stress, experiencing nature, enjoying the landscape - these are the main reasons that motivate many Germans to go hiking. But the choice is difficult: in Germany alone, there are hundreds of thousands of kilometers of marked hiking trails.
But only a fraction of the trails offer the desired enjoyment of nature: more than half of the routes are made of gravel or asphalt; the beautiful view marked on the map is overgrown and then one has to pass highways or dreary settlements...
How is one supposed to find their way around here? How can one distinguish rewarding from unattractive trails? The hiking certificate guarantees that the hiker will have an optimized hiking experience. For those who have once come to appreciate a Premium Trail, the hiking certificate guarantees that they can discover the hiking landscape from its best side on Premium Trails everywhere. The website of the Deutsches Wanderinstitut provides a precise overview of all Premium Trails, both existing and newly certified ones.
Guarantee of success
The positive evaluation of a hiking trail based on the German Hiking Certificate, in combination with professional marketing, is almost a guarantee for high visitor numbers and tourism revenues. The dwif-Consulting GmbH (Deutsches Wirtschaftswissenschaftliches Institut für Fremdenverkehr e. V.), for example, has attested a high added value for Premium Trails in several studies. The sales generated by the hiking trails “Saarland Traumschleifen”, e.g., were estimated at over 20 million. Almost all Premium Trail operators report that the number of their guests is increasing at rates higher than the average in their area.