Beginning at the Ahr Spring in North Rhine-Westphalia, the Ahr Valley is a picturesque region of vineyards, Roman ruins and hiking trails. It extends east to Ahrweiler in Rhineland-Palatinate and on to the Ahr River’s meeting point with the Rhine at the the Golden Mile near Kripp. It provides a relaxing escape, with medicinal springs and healing spas, not to mention spectacular rural scenery to explore.

The Ahr Valley runs through rolling pasturelands and charming hamlets before carving through the villages of Ahrhütte and Ahrdorf. It then leaves the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and flows into Rhineland-Palatinate where it joins the Adenauer Bach River and is eventually met by the Ahr Valley Railway.

The rugged rock faces and vineyards of the Ahr Hills mark the Middle Ahr Val-ley where the river flows below the “Coloured Cow” rock formation before broadening into the Lower Ahr Valley. From here the river travels through the settlements of Ahrweiler, Bad Neuenahr and Heimersheim and irrigates an extensive fruit and vegetable growing region before meeting the Rhine River in a pro-tected nature reserve.

While exploring the Ahr Valley, don’t miss a visit to the excavated Roman villa of Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler or the 1.5-kilometer-long Ahr Viaduct that traverses the Ahr Valley. If you love red wine, then be sure to explore the Rotwein-wanderweg (Red Wine Trail) that links the wine villages of the Ahr from Al-tenahr to the Bunte Kuh rock formation and the former abbey at Marienthal. It also passes by the Cold War-era government bunker that nestles below the vine-yards of Marienthal and is now open to the public. Those who prefer to explore on two wheels can hit the Ahr Cycleway that runs from the source of the River Ahr to its mouth on the Rhine River