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Hiking in

Wittnau AG
Aargauer Weg
Aargauer Weg
Stage 1, Frick–Wittnau
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Aargauer Weg
Aargauer Weg
Stage 2, Wittnau–Aarau
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Mountain biking in

Wittnau AG
Tiersteinberg Bike
Wittnau
Wittnau AG

Wittnau AG

Wittnau is a typical linear village built along a road. It is situated in the valley, nestled among the many hills of the Table Jura. It is fascinating to know that the territory of today’s commune was already inhabited in prehistoric and Roman times, as attested by archaeological finds.
SchweizMobil-Plus-Abonnenten erhalten 20% Rabatt auf den Winterschuh Garmisch von Meindl. Wittnau, located in the Upper Frick Valley, extends along the course of the Altbach stream. Handsome houses line the High Street (Hauptstrasse) that runs for about 1.5 kilometres through the heart of the village, giving the commune its typical identity as a chain village. Thanks to its characteristic stock of old buildings, the village has been added to the Swiss Federal Inventory of Landscapes of Natural Importance. Wittnau adjoins the cantons of Solothurn and Basel-Country (Basel-Landschaft). This linear village is nestled among several peaks: the Altenberg, Homberg, Limperg and the Horn, Wittnau’s ‘home’ mountain.

It was on the Horn that an important hill fortification was built in the late Bronze Age, in about 850 B.C. Surrounded by trenches to ward off attacks, this structure provided safe living accommodation for about 400 people. In the third century, the Romans used the structure on the Horn mountain as a refuge after raids by the Alemanni. Following the collapse of Roman rule, the Alemanni settled in the region – at a place which they thenceforth called Wittnau. The name is a combination of “weit” (or “witt”) meaning broad, and “Au” meaning a water meadow. It therefore means “broad water meadow” or also “near the broad land close to the water”, because Wittnau consists of an extensive area along the course of the stream (Talbach) that runs through the valley.

Over half of the commune’s total territory of 1125 hectares is covered by forest. Outside of the built-up zone, there are opportunities for hiking and strolling in the beautiful leisure areas that form part of the Aargau Jura Park, a Regional Nature Park of national importance. Until about the middle of the 20th century, Wittnau was mainly inhabited by farmers or homeworker families. The principal activity of the homeworkers was weaving silk ribbons for their customers in Basel (decorative trimmings for clothing). The opening of the A3 motorway in the 1970s triggered an increase in construction, transforming Wittnau into a popular residential area on the periphery of the Basel agglomeration.

Highlights

  • Buschberg Chapel and Lourdes Grotto: the chapel above Wittnau is known as a place that exudes natural power. According to legend, a master miller miraculously survived a serious accident here in 1668. This became known throughout the country. Growing numbers of people made the pilgrimage to this spot, leading to the construction of a small chapel here in 1868. It can be reached via a Way of the Cross with 14 stations. The Lourdes Grotto (1902) is located at the start of the Way.
  • Thiersteinberg Natural Forest Reserve: the second-largest Natural Forest Reserve in the Canton of Aargau is located in Wittnau. The Thiersteinberg forms a continuous area of forest covering 12 km². The Table Jura area is situated between the precipitous flanks of the Horn mountain to the north and the sunlit southern slopes. No forest management is practised here.
  • The Wittnau Horn: in the later Bronze Age, the Wittnau Horn was used as a place of residence and refuge, and it was subsequently settled by the Romans. It is regarded as a significant archaeological site; the first excavations took place here in 1934/35. The finds – stone tools, ceramic shards and coins – show that the Wittnau Horn was settled in various eras. Part of the main wall is still visible today.
Wittnau is a typical linear village built along a road. It is situated in the valley, nestled among the many hills of the Table Jura. It is fascinating to know that the territory of today’s commune was already inhabited in prehistoric and Roman times, as attested by archaeological finds.
SchweizMobil-Plus-Abonnenten erhalten 20% Rabatt auf den Winterschuh Garmisch von Meindl. Wittnau, located in the Upper Frick Valley, extends along the course of the Altbach stream. Handsome houses line the High Street (Hauptstrasse) that runs for about 1.5 kilometres through the heart of the village, giving the commune its typical identity as a chain village. Thanks to its characteristic stock of old buildings, the village has been added to the Swiss Federal Inventory of Landscapes of Natural Importance. Wittnau adjoins the cantons of Solothurn and Basel-Country (Basel-Landschaft). This linear village is nestled among several peaks: the Altenberg, Homberg, Limperg and the Horn, Wittnau’s ‘home’ mountain.

It was on the Horn that an important hill fortification was built in the late Bronze Age, in about 850 B.C. Surrounded by trenches to ward off attacks, this structure provided safe living accommodation for about 400 people. In the third century, the Romans used the structure on the Horn mountain as a refuge after raids by the Alemanni. Following the collapse of Roman rule, the Alemanni settled in the region – at a place which they thenceforth called Wittnau. The name is a combination of “weit” (or “witt”) meaning broad, and “Au” meaning a water meadow. It therefore means “broad water meadow” or also “near the broad land close to the water”, because Wittnau consists of an extensive area along the course of the stream (Talbach) that runs through the valley.

Over half of the commune’s total territory of 1125 hectares is covered by forest. Outside of the built-up zone, there are opportunities for hiking and strolling in the beautiful leisure areas that form part of the Aargau Jura Park, a Regional Nature Park of national importance. Until about the middle of the 20th century, Wittnau was mainly inhabited by farmers or homeworker families. The principal activity of the homeworkers was weaving silk ribbons for their customers in Basel (decorative trimmings for clothing). The opening of the A3 motorway in the 1970s triggered an increase in construction, transforming Wittnau into a popular residential area on the periphery of the Basel agglomeration.

Highlights

  • Buschberg Chapel and Lourdes Grotto: the chapel above Wittnau is known as a place that exudes natural power. According to legend, a master miller miraculously survived a serious accident here in 1668. This became known throughout the country. Growing numbers of people made the pilgrimage to this spot, leading to the construction of a small chapel here in 1868. It can be reached via a Way of the Cross with 14 stations. The Lourdes Grotto (1902) is located at the start of the Way.
  • Thiersteinberg Natural Forest Reserve: the second-largest Natural Forest Reserve in the Canton of Aargau is located in Wittnau. The Thiersteinberg forms a continuous area of forest covering 12 km². The Table Jura area is situated between the precipitous flanks of the Horn mountain to the north and the sunlit southern slopes. No forest management is practised here.
  • The Wittnau Horn: in the later Bronze Age, the Wittnau Horn was used as a place of residence and refuge, and it was subsequently settled by the Romans. It is regarded as a significant archaeological site; the first excavations took place here in 1934/35. The finds – stone tools, ceramic shards and coins – show that the Wittnau Horn was settled in various eras. Part of the main wall is still visible today.

Arrival and return Wittnau AG

Adresse

Gemeindeverwaltung Wittnau
Oberer Kirchweg 8
5064 Wittnau
Tel. +41 (0)62 865 67 20
gemeindekanzlei@wittnau.ch
www.wittnau.ch

Services

Accommodation

Landgasthof Krone
Landgasthof Krone
Wittnau
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Hiking in

Wittnau AG
Aargauer Weg
Aargauer Weg
Stage 1, Frick–Wittnau
Show all
Aargauer Weg
Aargauer Weg
Stage 2, Wittnau–Aarau
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Mountain biking in

Wittnau AG
Tiersteinberg Bike