The 3-Länder-Radweg (3-State Cycle Path) leads you through three federal states in Germany: Hessen, Baden-Württemberg, and Bavaria. You cycle through the beautiful Odenwald low mountain range, immerse yourself in the Neckar Valley with its magnificent castles, enjoy delicious wine, and explore idyllic half-timbered towns on the Main Cycle Path.
In this Collection, I introduce you to the 200-km (124-mile) long circular in five stages, averaging about 40 kilometres (25 miles) per day. I chose Erbach, a town in the Odenwald, as my starting point. You can easily reach the town with the Odenwald Railway from Frankfurt, for example. For timetables, see: odenwaldmobil.de (website is in German language only).
As the cycle path is well-connected to the rail network, you can easily join the route at any point along the trail. This also makes it easy to travel to and from your adventure. There’s also plenty of accommodation such as hotels, guesthouses, holiday rentals and campsites in the stage destinations.
Cycling through the Odenwald can be challenging as some stages include lots of ascents in the mountains. However, your hard work is always rewarded with unforgettable panoramic views and well-deserved descents. You’ll discover wonderful thick forests as well as romantic river valleys. You follow the River Neckar, cycling through the flat landscapes that have jumped straight from the pages of a fairytale, complete with castles towering above the river valley. You can also relax on the Main Cycle Path as you ride through unique scenery, treating yourself to a drop of wine from time to time.
Tip: The three-day 3-Länder cycling event takes place every year at the end of July/beginning of August. You can take part in the event to ride the route with over 250 fellow cyclists.
A good starting point for the round tour through the three countries is in Erbach in the Odenwald. Here you can easily get there with the Odenwaldbahn from Frankfurt. You can find the exact timetables at odenwaldmobil.de.Right at the beginning of the stage it goes uphill. From Erbach you pedal up to the picturesque wooded Geisberg. The subsequent, well-deserved descent leads you through an open landscape to Ebersberg. On the way you can enjoy wonderful views of the Odenwald.From Ebersberg you cycle a bit through the beautiful valley of the Mümling until it goes uphill again a little more intensely. A long ascent leads you into the wonderful hills of the Odenwald, where you dive into deep forests and are surrounded by untouched nature.You drive through the Odenwald in a steady up and down. Every now and then you roll across wide clearings and enjoy breathtaking views over the low mountain range. At the end of the stage, a rapid descent awaits you, which leads you down in sharp bends to Hirschhorn am Neckar.Here you have reached the stage destination and can end the day comfortably with a visit to the imposing castle and a refreshing stop. In the city you will find many accommodations, such as guest houses, guest houses and holiday apartments. Hirschhorn is also connected to the Rhein-Neckar S-Bahn network.
At the start of the second stage you cross the Neckar and can look back to Hirschhorn again. Because from here you have a picture-book view of the castle and the monastery, which are enthroned high above the river.On the southern bank of the Neckar you cycle through Ersheim, which is still in Hesse, and shortly afterwards cross the border to Baden-Württemberg.Always following the loops of the river, you drive past imposing quarries, see fairytale castles that stand majestically on the steep bank slopes and cross sleepy places with pretty half-timbered houses. You are traveling on a mostly flat route.At Obrigheim you cross the Neckar again and leave its bank at the mouth of the Elz. Now you cycle along the Elz to the stage destination Mosbach. The beautiful old town invites you to take a stroll to end the day in style.There are various hotels in Mosbach where you can stay overnight. At the train station you have a connection to the regional transport of the Deutsche Bahn and to the S-Bahn network Rhein-Neckar.
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From Mosbach you first cycle a little on flat paths through the Elztal. Then you turn off and start a long ascent that gently takes you into the woods and onto the hills of the Odenwald.The bike path is particularly beautiful because it runs on the so-called hiking railway, the former route of the Odenwald Express. In addition to unique nature and an unforgettable, beautiful landscape, you will also cross charming villages on the way. Often the old stations of the former railway line between Mosbach and Mudau still stand here.Arrived in Mudau, you drive a narrow loop through the village and cycle through quiet forests towards beeches. Shortly before the stage destination, you take a rapid descent that takes you to the idyllic Hollerbachtal. At the end of the valley you will reach Buchen, the destination of the stage.In the city you will find a good selection of hotels to stay overnight and at the train station you have a connection to the regional transport of the Deutsche Bahn.
From Buchen you drive to the Hummelsberg. Here the landscape is open and you can let your gaze wander far into the distance. After this moderate ascent you pass Walldürn. Then a long descent with smaller counter climbs awaits you.You roll down through the wonderful forest through the valley of the Marsbach and cross the border between Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria on the way. Schneeberg is the first place on the Bavarian side, followed by Amorbach.Here you have done about half of the stage and can treat yourself to a little break. The beautiful old town with its many cafes and restaurants invites you to linger.With renewed energy, you then continue on a slightly sloping route. In some sections, it goes directly along the glittering water of the Mud. The river flows into the Main at Miltenberg. It is also worth taking a break in the pretty old town of Miltenberg.Then you cross the Main and roll with a view of the water on the well-developed Main Cycle Path to the stage destination Klingenberg am Main. At the end of the day you can indulge yourself with culinary delights in one of the many wineries.In the city you will find a good selection of accommodation, such as hotels, holiday apartments and a campsite. At the train station you have a connection to various regional trains of Deutsche Bahn.
At the start of the last stage on the 3-country cycle path, you cross the Main and drive to Wörth, where you change the bank again. On the planet path it goes to Obernburg. Here you cross the Main for the last time and from now on follow the tributary Mümling.Wonderful paths lead you along the Mümling through romantic forests and past wide meadows and fields. Here you also leave Bavaria and reach Hesse again. On the way you always have fantastic views over the wide landscapes and up to the lovely wooded mountains of the Odenwald.You will be spared strenuous ascents on this last stage, because you continue to cycle comfortably through the idyllic river valley. It just goes gently uphill.Halfway through the stage you will reach Neustadt. You can take a break in the beautiful half-timbered town. But you also have the opportunity to stop off later, for example in Höchst in the Odenwald or in rustic beer gardens along the cycle path.The Mümling will finally lead you back to Erbach in the Odenwald, where you will again reach the starting point of the round tour through the three countries. At the end of the tour you can visit the imposing castle of the city, where you can review your cycling adventure again and let it end in style.