The Wartenberg is a prominent landmark of the municipality of Muttenz, which has three accessible castle ruins dating back to the Middle Ages. The elevation southeast of the municipality in Basel-Land is part of the Tafeljura and rises about 480 metres above sea level. Vines have been cultivated on the vineyard slope south of the ruins since Roman times. Until the end of the 13th century, the three castles formed a single unit; later they were acquired and passed on partly together, partly separately. During the Thirty Years' War, for example, the Mittlere Wartenburg served as accommodation for the Basel troops. During the Second World War, the nearby fortifications of the Sperrstelle Wartenberg were built and the ruins were badly damaged.
The protected vineyard tulip, the grape hyacinth and the golden milk star thrive among the vines. Low, crooked beech trees grow on the stony, warm dry south-western slope, interspersed with individual downy oaks and Scots pines. On the hilltop the three castle ruins are connected by a footpath. Wall lizards bathe in the sun on the warm stones and ferns, moss, pigeon crabgrass and round-leaved bellflowers grow between the rocks. In addition, the former quarries on the south and east sides are now valuable habitats for reptiles and heat-loving plants.
Information boards tell visitors a lot of interesting facts about the vines, viticulture in Muttenz and nature on the Wartenberg. The municipality of Muttenz has also produced an information brochure on the three castles.
Tip: A walk through the vineyard is particularly worthwhile in spring, when large stands of the yellow flowering vineyard tulips bloom here. The Muttenz winegrowers deliberately create favourable conditions for these rare wild tulips.
From the village church of St. Arbogast in Muttenz there is a steep ascent, characterised by many dry stone walls, to the forest and the castle ruins. Descending on the south side of the Wartenberg, you soon reach an open meadow with benches and a barbecue area at the edge of the forest. Here a path branches off to the right from the hiking trail down to the Muttenz vineyard. From here you return to the starting point of the tour.
The ruins are neither accessible for buggies nor wheelchairs. However, wheelchair and pushchair use is possible in the vineyards.
On the hilltop you have the opportunity to barbecue or have a picnic. In Muttenz itself there are several restaurants and shopping facilities.
Other greenbelt sites in the vicinity
Barbecue / fireplace, Culture, Excursion with animals, Excursion with children, Hike (good footwear), Viewpoint, Walk
Bicycle, Car, Public transport
Barbecue / fireplace, Food must be brought along, Picnic area
Birds, Cultural landscape / meadows, Forest, Insects, Reptiles, Specific fauna
Castle / Ruins, Historical site, Tour, Wine region
Families, Groups (< 10 persons), Groups (> 10 persons), Hikers, Pets, School classes, Walkers
The station "Muttenz Dorf" is easy to reach by public transport. From there, it is best to follow the hiking signs to Wartenberg Ruin. Those arriving by car can park their vehicle in the public car park at the cemetery, from where they can follow the signposts.
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