Length 5.7 km (3.5 miles), terrain: gradual up and down one hill, gain of 137 meters
NOTE: You can lengthen this run by doing more laps of the castle on the flat hilltop trail, each lap being 800 meters.
The great thing about this part of Germany is the number of hilltop castles perched above the pleasant old towns. Coburg is a lot like other towns in Franken and Thüringen, with beautiful market squares, small palaces and a fortress guarding it all on one of the surrounding hills.
|View towards the castle from town|
|View from the castle ramparts: makes the effort really worthwhile!|
So, if you're ready to make the inspiring run up to the castle, get yourself to the market square in the middle of the old town. The square is flanked by the old town hall ("Rathaus") along one side, and the Stadthaus on the other. The Stadthaus was once the seat of the state government when Coburg was the capital of the little duchy of Saxony-Coburg.
|The market, with Stadthaus and statue of Prince Albert|
|The way into the Hofgarten: the left side has no steps|
|Students hanging out in the Hofgarten: that's the lifestyle!|
The lawns right there are used by students from the nearby college on nice days, and above them are a few playgrounds. Just run uphill past the playgrounds and you'll find more signs guiding you upwards to "Veste Coburg" along asphalt trails.
At the one-kilometer-mark, you'll pass the "Naturkunde Museum", (the natural history museum) along your left, and keep plodding up the hill.
|Heading upwards towards the castle|
The asphalt trail curves its way upwards and then runs into a little street at a ridge, just below the castle. Turn left here to continue on up to the castle.
At the two-kilometer-mark, you'll run past a little parking lot and then you're there: with the stone walls rising above you, dotted by towers.
|A runner exiting the castle gate|
|In the first courtyard|
|In the second courtyard|
|Along the circuit trail|
Along the way down, you might want to run a few different park trails, by staying along the left side of the park on the way down.
At the playgrounds at the lower end of the park, you'll pass the 5-km mark.
When you get back to the palace and turn the corner to the left, let's see a bit more of town by running straight south along Rückertstraße to the fountain, then continue along the little alley to the stone church straight ahead. Turn right at the old church to run around to the front side of St. Moritz.
The legend of St. Moritz goes back to the early days of Christianity. A Roman legion was sent from Egypt to the Rhine valley to put down a Gallic rebellion. But the legionnaires refused to take part in a ceremony worshiping Caesar. Moritz was one of the officers of the legion, and he was killed for leading this insult to the god-caesar. The head of an African that you see displayed around town on various flags and fences represents Moritz.
|St. Moritz Church|
Now exit to the west along Neugasse.
In a block, at Ketchengasse, turn right and you'll be back at the market square in a few steps.