Can’t-miss German day trips A-Z: Jossgrund

In many ways, Jossgrund is similar to most any little village in Germany. It’s small, tidy, tranquil and prosperous. You’ll find red roofs, a church steeple, a gasthaus. You can drive a small winding road through it and be gone in two minutes.

But Jossgrund — and the surrounding area — holds something special. Look a little more closely, and Jossgrund almost becomes a metaphor for the German love of nature. Located near the border of the German states of Hessen and Bavaria, Jossgrund offers exploration, plenty of fresh air, and a chance to get off the beaten path. And, in the spirit of “J,” Jossgrund is also a jumping-off point for exploring a brilliant natural environment.

The one thing you have to see: Hessen Spessart nature park

The Spessart is a heavily forested range of small, old mountains that stretch from northern Bavaria into Southern Hessen. Stepping into the Spessart is like visiting an ancient, almost archetypal version of Germany. Autobahns and large cities disappear, replaced by vast stretches of what feels like well-cultivated wilderness. Parts of the forest are populated by hundreds-year old oak trees, towering beech trees and deep silence.

From Jossgrund, you can plunge deep into the heart of the Spessart. Hiking and biking options abound along excellent trails through diverse landscapes. Beautiful views are available during every season, especially on hilltops that stretch to over 500 meters high. During an era when outside diversions are almost a must, the Hessen Spessart Nature Park will see you through.

Go to Jossgrund, then get lost

Jossgrund also provides strong opportunities for those who love car or motorcycle touring. The Spessart stretches roughly 100 kilometers from north to south, and beautiful sights can be found along the way. Highlights include Mespelbrunn Castle (pictured above), about 50 minutes south of Jossgrund, or the beautiful half-timbered buildings of Miltenberg further south on the banks of the river Main.


Better yet, you can plunge into winding roads that snake through the heart of the Spessart. Start in Jossgrund, and then lose yourself. Stop to hike or grab a bite to eat along the way. But just take the road and see where it goes. Sometimes it’s the best way to find what you’re looking for.

Getting There

By car, Jossgrund is about an hour from Wiesbaden, two hours from Kaiserslautern, and 2.5 hours from Stuttgart. Check the Deutsche Bahn website for train information.

For U.S. government employees, including service members, remember to always follow command regulations, which may be different than host nation policies, when it comes to travel.