North of Frankfurt, skyscrapers and Autobahns swiftly give way to the unspoilt, wooded hills of the Taunus. Tantalizingly close to the city, the Taunus range is never very high, but it offers a refreshing foretaste of what much of rural Hesse away from the Rhine–Main conurbation is like. The affluent spa-town of Bad Homburg – at the foot of the Taunus yet within sight of the Frankfurt skyline – is the region’s gateway, with easy access to the heights of the Hochtaunus range and to the reconstructed Roman fort at Saalburg.

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