Are you looking for an adrenaline rush and you’re not scared of heights? Then the Geierlay bridge, the longest suspension bridge in Europe, is your go to destination!
The Geierlay is a suspension bridge, modelled after Nepalese suspension bridges, in the low mountain range of the Hunsrück.
It’s a fun activity for both young and old and the ideal day trip if you’re staying in the Rhineland Palatinate state.
So far I have visited this bridge two times and once I even had it all to myself! In this guide I will explain the different ways to reach the bridge and how you can have it all to yourself as well!.
Geierlay Suspension Bridge in Mörsdorf, Germany – Travel Guide
The Geierlay suspension bridge opened in 2015 and was erected in a record time of only 6 months. And 5 months later the bridge opened to the public. You want to know the best part? The Geierlay bridge is completely free to visit!
The bridge is 360 meters long, 85 centimeters wide and is at an altitude of 100 meters above the ground of the Geierlayschleife.
Crossing the Geierlay bridge is a thrilling experience and not for the faint of heart, especially on a more windy day.
Can you believe that I once saw a guy ride his bicycle across and another one crossed it by skateboard?! I think that would be a little too much haha, even for me!
That being said, the Geierlay suspension bridge is one of the most beautiful places to see in Germany and can be easily combined with a visit to Cochem, Burg Eltz and the Rheinstein Castle.
How to reach the Geierlay Suspension Rope Bridge
The Geierlay suspension rope bridge is located between the towns of Mörsdorf and Sosberg.
As of November 2020 you can only cross the bridge in one way: from Mörsdorf to Sosberg. This is to ensure that the corona protection measures are upheld and the only way the bridge can remain open for now.
Both times I visited the bridge myself I also parked my car in Mörsdorf, the only difference now is that you can’t cross it back but you have to follow the Geierlayschleife hiking trail which is about 6.4km long.
Mörsdorf is about 3 hours driving from the Belgian border and there’s several parking lots. Simply follow the arrows once you arrive into town and they will lead you the way.
The closest parking lot is the one at the visitor’s center and from here it will take you averagely 20 minutes to reach the bridge.
The automat only accepts coins so make sure you have some on you cause it’s not allowed to park on the streets in Mörsdorf. And thrust me on this cause I tried it once cause I didn’t know any better and within 1 minute I had an angry guy yelling at me from his house.
It is not allowed to park near the bridge, the road that leads to it is meant for pedestrians and cyclists.
BY PUBLIC TRANSPORT
Public transport to Mörsdorf is actually pretty much a disaster and will require you to take a combination of several trains and a taxi to reach the actual village.
Where to stay when visiting the Geierlay Suspension Rope Bridge
- Schloss Lieser, Autograph Collection – If you’ve ever wanted to stay at a fairytale castle now is your chance! This one of a kind hotel truly is a gem!
- Fährhaus – This modern day hotel is located in Koblenz and has an indoor swimming pool and wellness centre.
- Romantik Hotel Schloss Rheinfels – A beautiful 4-star Superior hotel across from the Loreley Rock in the UNESCO Middle Rhine Valley is at the foot of Rheinfels Castle.
- Gästehaus Ziemons – This guesthouse is located in the heart of Cochem and some rooms come with their own private bathroom.
- Monteurzimmer Göllheim – An appartement with 2 bedrooms and a balcony in töllheim
- Mosel Dream – Located in Cochem and only 3 miles from Cochem Castle, Mosel Dream provides accommodations with river views, free WiFi and free private parking
When is the best time to visit
The Hunsrück region is beautiful all year round although I do recommend visiting between Spring and Autumn.
I once went during Winter and the bridge itself was pretty slippery. Never at any point did I feel in danger but it was still kinda creepy.
Also during the other 3 seasons the trees will have their leaves which makes the Geierlayschleife valley that much more beautiful!
It’s one of the top things to do in Germany and definitely one of the main attractions in the Rhineland Palatinate state. That’s why I recommend you to skip the weekends and try visiting during the weekday. This way you’ll encounter a lot less people.
TIP – If you go in the early morning you can sometimes see fog rising up from the valley underneath which makes for spectacular photos!
Hiking Trails towards Geierlay Bridge
There are two ways to reach the suspension bridge from Mörsdorf: one that goes through the woods ands is a little more adventurous. The other one that follows a regular road that will lead you straight to the start of the bridge.
HIKING TRAIL 1 (PINK)
The trail starts at the visitor’s center and starts on the Kastellauner Strasse. Keep on going straight until you walk passed the last house in the village. Then you’ll take the first street to the right which will lead you directly to the suspension bridge.
It’s a 20 minute walk in total.
HIKING TRAIL 2 (PURPLE)
If you want a little bit more adventure I suggest you follow trail number 2 which will lead you through the forest. Make sure to wear proper hiking shoes when doing this one cause it can get really muddy! From the visitor’s center make your way down to Auf der Lex strasse and there you’ll see a staircase which will lead you down into the forest. From there it’s pretty straight forward to follow the hiking trail.
It’s a 30 minute hike in total.
For now it’s only possible to cross the bridge in one direction: from Mörsdorf to Sosberg. Although I can’t imagine you have to do this if you’re the only one there in the early morning.
Still when visiting you should still take it into consideration you’ll have to add a few kilometers extra to your trip. To get back to Mörsdorf you can only follow along on the Geierlayschleife hiking trail which adds around 6.6km and 2,5 hours.
Other things to do close to the Geierlay Suspension Bridge
VISIT BURG ELTZ
Burg Eltz, also known as Eltz Castle, is one of the most beautiful fairytale castles in Germany! It’s located in Koblenz and is only 35 minutes driving from Mörsdorf.
- Opening hours – 9am to 5pm
- Entrance fee – €9 for a guided tou
- How to get there – There is a big parking lot located on 20 minutes walking distance from the castle. From here there are two ways to reach the castle. One that goes through the woods and another one that goes down a paved road. To find the second one simply walk towards the Burg Eltz Chapel and keep on following the road. From here you’ll have a beautiful view over the entire valley with Burg Eltz placed perfectly in the middle.
STROLL THROUGH THE QUAINT TOWN OF COCHEM
The town of Cochem is located in the Mosel valley and is often referred to as the Pearl of the Mosel river. The Mosel valley is nestled in between two hiking paradises: the Eifel and the Hunsrück, where you’ll find the Geierlay suspension bridge.
From the visitor’s centre it’s only 25 minutes driving until you reach the main parking lots of Cochem.
How to get there – Leave your car in one of the parking lots in front of the center. You can’t drive into the town itself (no matter what Google Maps or Waze says!. Trust me, I’ve been there and ended up in a small street lined with restaurant tables :p. So leave your car at a parking lot and from there simply walk up towards the Reichsburg Cochem.
The Rheinstein Castle, also known as Burg Rheinstein, is located in Trechtingshausen and also serves as a hotel and used to serve as a knight’s watch castle above the Rhine.
Burg Rheinstein is only 50 minutes driving from the suspension bridge.
- Opening hours – 10am to 5pm
- Entrance fee – €4,5 if you want to enter the castle
- How to get there – There is a parking lot underneath the castle which allows you to park for free for 2 hours. From here you have to walk up to the castle and follow the winding road.
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