Glistening rivers flowing through wild valleys, thick forests blanketing pretty hills and wide, open countryside offering unforgettable views – the Alb-Neckar Cycleway takes you through wonderful landscapes in the south-west of Germany. As well as unique and varied nature, you can look forward to sleepy villages, cosy towns, and charming cities brimming with historical half-timbered houses.
The Alb Neckar CycleWay winds its way through Baden-Württemberg from Ulm to Heilbronn for just over 200 kilometres (124 miles). It takes you across the Swabian Jura mountain range and along picturesque valleys of the river Neckar, Rems and Bottwart. In this Collection, I guide you along the cycle path in five stages, which average about 40 kilometres (24.8 miles) in length.
This five-day Tour sets off from Ulm, which is easy to reach with regional and long-distance trains. Of course, you could also cycle there! The Danube Cycle Path runs through Ulm (komoot.de/collection/359). In Heilbronn, where the Alb-Neckar Cycleway concludes, you also have the option to take the train home or continue your adventure on the Neckar Valley Cycle Path.
You will find plenty of accommodation options in the stage destinations. There are also plenty of restaurants, cafés and cosy beer gardens en route where you can indulge to your heart’s content. On the Alb-Neckar Cycleway, you can enjoy the combination of beautiful landscape, idyllic nature, and Swabian cuisine to the fullest.
The first stage of the Alb-Neckar cycle path begins in Ulm on the banks of the Danube. It's not particularly long, but it is crisp towards the end, because it leads you up to the Alb. You can get to the starting point of the stage, for example, via the Danube Cycle Path or you can take a long-distance or regional train to the nearby main train station.The route takes you from the banks of the Danube past the train station, so that you can start cycling right there. It goes through the city to the banks of the Blau. You follow the river out of Ulm and immerse yourself in the beautiful nature of the idyllic Blue Valley at the gates of the city.At the end of the valley you reach Blaubeuren, where you can admire the imposing Blautopf, the source of the river that you have just followed. During a long break in the city, a visit to the local monastery is also worthwhile.Then you cycle a short distance along the Ach and then turn into the wild and romantic Tiefental. Here a bike path leads you through the forest past mighty rocks, it goes continuously uphill. On the way, however, you have the opportunity to take breaks at cozy rest areas to gather strength and enjoy the fascinating landscape around you.After you have crossed the valley, you can make a detour to the Sontheimer Höhle, before you drive in moderate ups and downs to the stage destination Laichingen. In the small town on the Swabian Alb you will find various accommodations as well as numerous refreshment stops.
From Laichingen you drive on the high plateau of the Swabian Alb through the sparsely populated region and enjoy a lot of untouched nature along the way. From the higher elevations you often have fascinating views far over the beautiful landscape, which is characterized by lush meadows and deep forests.After about half of the route you will reach the Neidlinger Steige. Here the Swabian Alb drops steeply and you roll down on a rapid descent to Neidlingen. If you have not yet taken a long break, here is one, because in this place you will find cozy places to stop.With renewed energy, you then continue cycling on a slightly sloping route. On the way you can always take a look at the northern edge of the Swabian Alb, which rises imposingly in the distance.Past the picturesque Kegelberg Limburg to Weilheim an der Teck and across beautiful fields and meadows to the stage destination Bad Boll. In the health resort you have a large selection of overnight accommodations and can end the day relaxing in the mineral thermal bath.
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From Bad Boll you roll to the start of the third stage on the Alb-Neckar cycle path through a beautiful, rural area down to the Filstal. You can enjoy wonderful views over the open, wide landscape on the way.At Göppingen you cross the Fils and cycle uphill on the other side of the valley along the Marbach. You drive to Wäschenbeuren on the former embankment of the Hohenstaufenbahn. The railway bike path takes you far away from traffic through idyllic nature.From Wäschenbeuren you cycle into the Beutental. Here you not only expect untouched nature in the quiet forest, but also the laundry castle and the cozy forest café Beutental. At the end of the descent through the forest you will reach the Rems.You then continue through the Remstal on relatively flat paths and via Lorch, Waldhausen and Plüderhausen to the stage destination Schorndorf. Between Waldhausen and Plüderhausen you will pass beautiful quarry ponds that invite you to take a refreshing break, especially on hot days.In Schorndorf you can end the day in the charming old town with its pretty half-timbered houses. You have a large selection of accommodations and refreshment stops here. Schorndorf also has a train station with a connection to regional and long-distance traffic as well as to the S-Bahn towards Stuttgart.
The fourth stage takes you on the first section through the beautiful Remstal. Behind Winterbach you cycle a bit along the wonderfully renatured river and then leave the Rems for a short time.Over the hill of the Sörenberg you drive past picturesque vineyards, idyllic allotment gardens and wide fields to Neckarrems. Here the Rems flows into the Neckar, which you now follow on the Neckar Valley Cycle Path.First you roll on the dike along the river and enjoy wonderful views of the water. At Ludwigsburg you cycle through the beautiful nature of the Zugwiesen with renatured sections of the Neckar. The view of the opposite bank is impressive, with beautiful terraced vineyards and rock faces.On smooth asphalt, you continue to cycle along steep vineyards and pretty gardens along the water until you reach Marbach am Neckar. In Schiller's native town, a leisurely stroll through the pretty old town is worthwhile at the end of the stage. In Marbach you have a small selection of overnight accommodations and connections to the S-Bahn towards Stuttgart or Backnang.
The last stage on the Alb-Neckar cycle path is also the shortest. So it's wonderful to end the beautiful bike tour comfortably. Immediately after the start of the stage you will reach the banks of the Murr, which flows into the Neckar near Marbach.You follow it up the river and enjoy impressive views of the water and the lush banks. After a few kilometers you will reach Steinheim. Here you leave the Murr and dive into the picturesque Bottwartal behind the village.You follow the course of the Bottwar to Oberstenfeld and then continue to Beilstein. It is continuously uphill. Behind Beilstein you have reached the highest point of the stage and now roll comfortably downhill on the former route of the Bottwartalbahn.At Ilsfeld you will meet the Schozach and ride on a beautiful bike path right on the riverbank through the romantic Schozach Valley to Sontheim, where the river flows into the Neckar. From here you roll along the banks of the Neckar to Heilbronn, the destination of the tour.After you have enjoyed Heilbronn and its surroundings, you can start your journey home from the train station with the long-distance or regional trains or continue your bike tour on the Neckar Valley cycle path.