Harzer Wandernadel

Explore the Harz National Park with the Harzer Wandernadel hiking passes

The Harz Hiking Needle combines the fun of hiking with the ambition to achieve something. Selected trails and stretches of land away from the well-known tourist attractions are targeted.

Hiking fun combined with enthusiasm and ambition: That is the concept behind the Harz Hiking Needle. With a hiking pass, which you can buy at the Upper Harz tourist information centres you move from station to station and are guided to the most beautiful and favourite places in the Harz.

The Harz Hiking Needle also connects various well-known hiking trails with each other. For example, you can hike the Selketal climb the Harzer-Hexen-Stieg or the Harz Border Trail Experience the picturesque landscape of the Harz and hike or cycle to historical sites, interesting viewpoints and geological features.


The hiking map, which is also available at the Oberharz tourist information centres, shows all 222 stations of the Harz Hiking Needle. Each station has a stamping point where you can fill your hiking pass. You will be rewarded with various hiking titles for your achievements. With the Harz app , you can now also collect Harz Hiking Needle stamps online. The app only gives you the digital badges. For the tangible badges, you still need the analogue stamp booklet, with which you can get your hiking pin and certificate at the tourist information offices.

The titles of the Harzer Wandernadel

The Harz hiking pin is available in bronze, silver and gold for 8, 16 and 24 stamps respectively, and from 50 stamps you can call yourself the "Harz Hiking King". Special achievements deserve special honours: Those who have hiked all 222 stamp points can rightly call themselves "Harz Hiking Emperor". You can get the badges and certificates on presentation of your hiking pass at the Upper Harz Tourist Information Centre. By the way, you can't cheat: almost all stamp points can only be reached on foot or by bike.

Another award has been added since April 2016! So that you can reach an intermediate destination between king and emperor. The Harz Emperor's Shoe can be obtained by collecting 150 stamps.

With a little ambition and at least eleven stamps in their passports, young hikers up to the age of eleven can earn the title of "Hiking Princess" and "Hiking Prince". In return, they receive a badge and a certificate confirming their hiking titles.


Harzer Wandernadel Upper Harz hiking
©GLC | lenafeelings.de

Themed pins of the Harz Hiking Needle

In addition to the various general Harz hiking badges, you can also choose specific themed hikes for which you will also receive awards.

For example, hike on the Harzer-Hexen-Stieg long-distance hiking trail in the Upper Harz and experience the unspoilt nature of the Harz National Park over 100 km. You will learn interesting facts about Harz myths and legends at 28 stamp points. The booklet accompanying the Harz Hiking Needle "Harzer-Hexen-Stieg" provides useful information about these stamping points.

Or hike in the footsteps of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe with the "Goethe in the Harz" hiking pin. You can collect your stamps at 28 places steeped in history, which you can also find out more about in the booklet accompanying the trail.

Upper Harz mountains hiking
©Gaby und Vanessa Lader

Another themed trail deals with the history of divided Germany. The Harz Border Trail is a unique way to learn about the former border area of the Federal Republic of Germany. Hike along secret border paths and along the former "Kolonnenweg" to 20 different stamp sites. You will also find more detailed information in an accompanying booklet in which you can collect your stamps and receive the "Harzer Grenzweg" hiking pin.

The theme of the "Harzer Steiger" hiking pin is the history of mining in the Harz Mountains. 111 different stamps, 23 of which are compulsory mining stamps, are used to obtain this pin. These compulsory mining stamps are labelled with the mining symbol "Schlägel und Eisen" in the list of stamping points. These stamps in particular must be documented in your hiking pass and the accompanying booklet. All other 88 stamps are freely selectable

But that's not all of the awards you can earn: on your hike around the Oderteich and along the Rehberger Graben, you can receive your trench keeper diploma! You will be asked various questions in the accompanying "Harzer Steiger" booklet. The answers can be found on the information boards about the Upper Harz Water Management World Heritage Site and the historic Upper Harz mining industry. Once you have answered all the questions correctly, you will receive a certificate and a diploma pin from the landlord of the Rehberger Grabenhaus.

All booklets accompanying the individual themed hikes are available from the Upper Harz tourist information centres.

Hiking the Oberharz Brocken border trail
©Tony Hätscher