One of part of a network of ‘feeder’ roads that took the pilgrim from different parts of Germany, Poland, Bohemia, Austria and beyond to join one of the four main routes through France. The section from Nürnberg to Konstanz is part of the route which begins in Prague, crosses the German border at Tillyschanz, continues through Germany and then, “end-to-end” through Switzerland, thus enabling the pilgrim to journey on to Le Puy and beyond.
The Route. 383 km long. Starts in Nürnberg and leads southwest via Schwabach, Abenberg, Kalbensteinberg, Gunzenhausen, Markt Heidenheim, Oettingen, Nördlingen, Neresheim, Giengen, Nerestetten, Ulm, Oberdischingen. Apfingen, Biberach, Steinhausen, Bad Waldsee, Weingarten, Ravensburg, Brochenzell, Markdorf and Meersburg to Konstanz on the German-Swiss border (from where the pilgrim can continue on foot along the Jakobsweg in Switzerland).
For details of the Tillyschanz to Nürnberg section, which precedes the route described on this page, go to http://www.deutsche-jakobswege.de/prag-tillyschanz-rothenburg.html or http://www.jakobus-gesellschaften.de/jakobsweg-tillyschanz-nuernberg.html
Waymarking. Extremely good throughout. The majority of the route is waymarked with four inch square plastic tiles depicting a yellow scallop shell and crossed pilgrim staves on a blue background. Elsewhere there are the yellow arrows familiar from the Camino francés as well as, at times, in places difficult to waymark otherwise, yellow plastic tape.
Terrain. Undulating and not very taxing, through rolling agricultural landscapes alternating with forest tracks.
What to see. Very interesting historically (numerous cathedrals, churches and other monuments worth visiting) and many pilgrim, St. James and other related references, art and architecture along the way.
When to go. Basically any time apart from the winter. You can either do the route on your own/with friends or, if you want to join a group (that walks the route every spring to update and repair the waymarking) contact Gerhilde Fleischer, Rainstrasse 11/3, 88316 Isny (tel/fax 07562 55385 – she speaks very good English).
Accommodation. No infrastructure of pilgrim-only accommodation at present so pilgrims on a budget will find this route a rather expensive one. 2 or 3 campsites, 4 youth hostels, otherwise plenty of medium-priced facilities (Gasthäuser, etc.) at convenient intervals along the way, as well as places for food and drink.
Distinctive features/General. You are unlikely to meet many other pilgrims even though the route is becoming better known (by people who live along the way too) and better used each year.
Maps. Bayerische Landesvermessungsamt Topograpische Karte L6532 Nümberg and Wanderkarte Frankisches Seenland Naturpark Altmühl, westlicher teil, cover the route from Nürnberg to Gunzenhausen. From there to Ulm you will need, in adddtion to the second map, their Topograpische Karte L7128 Nördlingen and the Landesvermessungsamt BadenWürttemberg’s L7126 Aalen, L7326 Heidenheim, and L7724 Ulm. From Ulm to Bad Waldsee you will need L7524 Blaubeuren, L7722 Munderkingen, L7924 Biberach, and L8124 Bad Waldsee. To finish the route you will then need L8122 Weingarten, L8322 Friedrichshafen (although this has a large quantity of lake on it!), as does also L8329 Konstanz. All these are at a scale of 1:50,000. The route is marked on many but not all sheets.
- http://www.oberschwaben-tourismus.de/uploads/tx_icbrochuresdownload/OT_Jakobswegfuehrer_2011.pdf A detailed leaflet written by Gerhilde Fleischer and produced by the local Tourist Board.
- Jakobusweg 1(i) (Nürnberg – Gunzenhausen), Jakobusweg 1(ii) (Gunzenhausen – Ulm), Jakobusweg 2 (Ulm – Bad Waldsee) and Jakobusweg 3 (Bad Waldsee – Konstanz). four small, pocket-sized books by Gerhilde Fleischer. These describe both the route and the places of interest along the way (accommodation is on a separate sheet) and are available either directly from the author or from Manfred Zentgraf’s mail order bookshop (Verlagsbuchhandel, In den Boden 38, D97332 Volkach/Main).
- Nürnberg to Konstanz (Pilgrim Guides to the Roads through Europe # 2), by Alison Raju, Confraternity of St James, 2003. Incudes route-finding, practical, and historial information. Available in our Shop.
Thanks to Alison Raju, January 2005.