In order to receive this award, the hiking experts at Sauerland Tourism had to work their way through the almost 50-page criteria catalog of the German Hiking Association and - of course! - fulfill all the requirements. The catalog states that only a region that has dedicated itself entirely to hiking in terms of its hiking trail infrastructure, accommodation and service can be considered a quality region.
Eleven communities with a total of 280 districts and villages have joined forces to form the "Sauerland-Wanderdorf": Brilon, Diemelsee, Medebach, Lennestadt, Kirchhundem, Olsberg, Schmallenberg, Eslohe, Willingen, Winterberg and Hallenberg. These places have completely adapted to hikers. Specifically, a uniform and almost "untraceable" network of trails was created, hiking starting points were equipped with information boards, and quality hiking trails and hosts were tested and awarded, without which the certificate would not be awarded at all. In addition, the hiking villages have trained employees in the tourist information offices who are very familiar with the region and with public transport, can give qualified hiking tips and know all the hosts where hikers are welcome.
According to the Hiking Association's catalog, a total of 44 criteria must be met in the areas of trail network, gastronomy and service for hikers, among others. This proof was presented by the hiking experts at Sauerland Tourism and, of course, in the individual towns in cooperation with the hosts, the representatives of the hiking associations, the responsible authorities and nature conservation as well as the forest owners. Above all, the optimal and sustainable waymarking is the focus of quality development and assurance. Thanks to the excellent work of the numerous volunteer trail markers, who are continuously trained and educated, the high quality promise is kept.
The quality seal now guarantees vacation guests in the Sauerland-Wanderdörfer: Hiking here is a carefree and easy-to-prepare experience for all the senses. Anyone traveling to the Sauerland can be sure of enjoying a hiking vacation that is both close to nature and rich in variety in a fabulously staged landscape - offering a wealth of discoveries and experiences for several days. That he walks on those routes, which present the most exciting sides of the region, and can build on the advisory authority in the tourist information and accommodations, where he is given personal Tipps and suitable route suggestions. That he accommodates in houses, in which he finds evenly the comfort and service orientation, which lets him slide after its trip as fast as possible into wohlige relaxation. And that his hosts sweeten his stay from morning to night with regional delicacies from kitchen and cellar as well as comfortable beds. This comprehensive offer, which we present to our hiking guests in a large region, now bears a seal of quality. With this, experts have expertly confirmed what our guests have long appreciated: Hiking in the Sauerland is a well-rounded pleasure through and through.