Hike to Nebelhorn Oberstdorf : Your Complete Guide to an Alpine Panorama

Two hikers descending from Nebelhorn with brilliant alpine ranges

Hiking in Germany has lots of possibilities. From the meandering hills along the Rhine and Mosel to the panoramic snow-capped peaks of the Bavarian Alps, Germany is well-gifted by Mother Nature. And it’s lovely to see these places still giving the ‘untouched nature’ vibe as you explore. Hoping to keep it that way, we are continuing on our journey to hike the trails of Germany, and this episode is a hike to Nebelhorn Oberstdorf.

Oberstdorf is a beautiful village in Allgäu that boasts one of the most scenic views and dreamy hiking routes. When I first visited Oberstdorf in 2022, I was unprepared for how challenging a hike Nebelhorn turned out to be and did not make it to the summit. This time, I was adamant about reaching the top, which turned out to be even more challenging than I expected. I managed to summit the peak and am happy to share this beautiful hiking route with you all.

The following itinerary should help you plan out your summit to the peak of Nebelhorn.

Important Details of the Hike to Nebelhorn Oberstdorf

Hike duration7-9 hours (to the top and back)
Distance16.4 kilometers
Hike difficultyModerate to Difficult
RequirementsGood hiking shoe
ChallengeSteep ascent and descent
CheckpointsI. Oberstdorf
II. Seealpe (1280 m)
III. Nebelhorn Höfatsblick (1932 m)
III. Nebelhorn Peak (2224 m)
Cable car availableYes (June – October)

Is it possible to hike and get back in one day?

Yes, it is possible. However, you must make sure to start early. The complete hike can take anywhere from 7 to 9 hours. If you start your hike around 9 or 10 AM, you will have ample time to complete the hike and also be on time if you later consider taking the cable car. The last cable car leaves at 4:30 PM, so I would suggest keeping that option open.

two girls hiking along the trail to Nebelhorn

Getting to Oberstdorf

Public transport

Public transport is an easier way to reach Oberstdorf. There are good train connections from cities like Munich and Ulm, which will allow you to reach Stuttgart smoothly.

The Deutschland Ticket works for regional trains and buses. Below are the travel times from nearby cities with the possibility of returning the same day.

From StuttgartDuration: 4 hours
Stuttgart Hbf to Ulm (1.5 hours) – RE 5
Ulm Hbf to Oberstdorf ( 2 hours) – RE 75
From MunichDuration: 2 hours 20 minutes
Route: Munich to Oberstdorf – RE 76
From KonstanzDuration: ~3 hours
Route: Multiple connections going through Lindau-Reutin

Traveling with your own vehicle

It is also possible to reach Oberstdorf with your own vehicle. This location offers paid parking and costs 10 EUR for a whole day. In summer and on public holidays, it might be difficult to get a parking space later in the day, so try to arrive early in the morning.

Nebelhorn Oberstdorf Hike

Hike starts from the beautiful village of Oberstdorf

As you reach Oberstdorf, you can take a leisurely stroll through the village before gearing up for the hike.

Oberstdorf is one of the most beautiful villages I have visited in Germany, and every time I visit, it offers something new. Admire the beautiful mountains you might see and walk along the picturesque Trettach River as you make your way to Nebelhornbahn, the starting point of the hike.

Hike from Oberstdorf to Seealpe

waterfall during the hike to seealpe from Oberstdorf

The hiking trail until you reach Seealpe is pretty straightforward. You hike along the roads and a bit of rugged trails. In summer, it is possible to take a route through the forest. This route is really beautiful, you walk along the waterfall and the calming energy of the forest. You just need to be careful not to step on wet logs or branches, or weaker stones, and always be sure-footed. There are ropes on the difficult part of the trail. It is a lovely route and suitable for beginners.

You will reach Seealpe in about 1.5 to 2 hours of starting the hike.

Seealpe (1280 m)

As you inch closer to Seealpe, you will start hearing the cowbells and you will know you’re there. The view opens up, and you will see some giant landscapes surrounding you from each side. It is humbling to realize that such a mighty landscape is just 2 hours of hiking away from you. This doesn’t sit well if you’re from high-altitude countries like Nepal, where you walk for days to reach someplace like this, but you’ll love it nonetheless.

Seealpe with big landscapes around it

Seealpe is a small ‘lake’ that does not compare well to its counterparts in Bavaria but certainly offers a good vantage point. The lake looks better when there is enough water. You can rest here for some time, have a picnic, take some photographs, and prepare yourself for a challenging route that’s waiting for you.

Seealpe to Nebelhorn Höfatsblick

This part of the hike is the most challenging. It includes steep ascents along rugged trails, and you need to be sure-footed as there are tinier stones (vocab: scree) that might make it prone to slipping.

I remember struggling with this route quite a lot when I hiked in June 2022, and the temperature had hit a whopping 36 degrees. I had to push myself to take each step, and you will also have to do that to reach the promising resting lap of Höfatsblick. Depending on your pace and resting times, it might take you somewhere between 2 to 3 hours to reach Bergstation Höfatsblick.

Nebelhorn Höfatsblick (1932 m)

View from Nebelhorn Höfatsblick

Once you’re in Nebelhorn Höfatsblick, you get an idea of what’s on offer as you will start to see Alpine ranges everywhere you look. It’s an amazing sight, and you might want to savor it with a few beers at the Nebelhorn Marktrestaurant, which is too inviting to miss.

Like a little kid sprinting their way once they see their home, you can’t contain your adrenaline as you see the mighty Nebelhorn just within your reach. The last lap is waiting for you and it is the most satisfying part of this hike.

Nebelhorn Höfatsblick to Nebelhorn (2224 m)

Two hikers descending from Nebelhorn with brilliant alpine ranges

The hike to Nebelhorn (2224 m) from Höfatsblick is comparatively easy and full of adrenaline. Every step offers an increasingly better view of the panoramic Alpine ranges, and you might even find yourself walking backwards to appreciate what you’re seeing.

Nebelhorn looms closer as you continue walking through the paved roads. The route is easier compared to the steeper ascents you already went through. Halfway along this route, there is a panoramic viewpoint with a bench where you can rest and take some pictures. Just a 30-minute smooth and relaxing hike will take you to the Nebelhorn summit. 

Personal note: As someone who took this challenging route twice just to have the feeling of summiting the peak, I can understand the voice inside you saying, “I’ve got to make it to the top, no matter what!” But the conditions can be different every time you hike. I pushed through an icy terrain the last 100 meters of the hike with unprepared gear to satisfy that voice. It made my legs shiver with fear and uncertainty as I had to crawl back carefully through that slippery icy terrain. All I want to say is, please calculate the risk before you push yourself for the summit. Anything that offers a serious risk should be an absolute no-go.

View from the Nebelhorn Oberstdorf summit
View from the Nebelhorn summit

Hiking back to Oberstdorf

Hiking back to Oberstdorf will take somewhere between 2 to 3 hours, depending on how comfortable you are descending some steep hills. You have to be very sure-footed to make sure you don’t slip on the gravelly trails.

If you are not confident about hiking back through the steep trails between Nebelhorn Höfatsblick and Seealpe, I would recommend taking a cable car. Yes, it’s a bit expensive at 34 EUR, but safety always comes first.

On the other hand, if you are comfortable, take the route and work out more of your legs so you won’t think about climbing and going down stairs for another week. You could celebrate it with a beer at Seealpe Berggasthof.

Cable car to Nebelhorn

The cable car is available from June to October to reach the summit of Nebelhorn. There are multiple cable car ticket options available. The prices are rather on the pricier side. I have highlighted the relevant ones below. (updated June 2024)

To the Nebelhorn and back
Adults: 52.5 EUR | Student (below 27 years with ID): 40.5 EUR

To the Hofatsblick station and back
Adults: 45.5 EUR | Student (below 27 years with ID): 35 EUR

To the Seealpe station and back
Adults: 32.5 EUR | Student (below 27 years with ID): 25 EUR

Descent from Hofatsblick station
To Oberstdorf: Adults: 34 EUR | Student (below 27 years with ID): 26 EUR

To Seealpe station: Adults: 24 EUR | Student (below 27 years with ID): 18 EUR

For more cable car prices and information, please visit this link.

When is a good time to hike Nebelhorn?

I have been to the hiking trail three times, all in different seasons. The trail almost feels like a ghost town in March and April and starts getting good traction from June. As the weather improves and the trail becomes kinder and opens up to hikers, I would say that June to October is the best time to hike Nebelhorn.

Seealpe will be quite busy in summer, as many people come to enjoy the beautiful nature. But as you hike up, the crowd thins.

Snowy terrain in Nebelhorn
Nebelhorn summit with snow

I have never properly hiked before. Should I hike Nebelhorn?

Yes, of course. Just take the trail and go as far as you can. You don’t need to reach the peak. Every step of the hike is beautiful and offers a thrill. Listen to your instincts and trust them. If you feel comfortable, keep hiking. If you get scared, give yourself a pat on the back for how far you’ve come and safely return. Being on the trail is lovely, and you will not regret it.

You might also the following related posts about Germany.


I love traveling and I love writing about it. It's my sincere hope that through my content, you will find some helpful information and inspiration for your own travels. :)

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