With magnificent castles, baroque gardens, fairytale castle ruins, and Celtic places of worship, Baden-Württemberg is brimming with cultural heritage and surprises. Did you know that you can visit the ruins of the oldest city north of the Alps above the Danube River? You can even see four castles at once looking out from a bend in the River Neckar near the town of Neckarsteinach.
In this Collection, we want to take you on a journey of discovery through Baden-Württemberg’s cultural landscape. Over five cycle Tours, you can enjoy famous buildings such as Heidelberg Castle and the castle ruins on Hohenstaufen mountain and also discover a few gems that you may not have heard of before.
You can reach all Tours easily with public transport. All but one of the routes are circulars, so you don’t have to worry about how to get back after your ride. This Collection offers a good mix of rides to suit every ability, from half-day Tours to demanding full-day adventures. You can shorten the longer Tours by train to explore the region in full without burning out your legs. To totally relax and focus on the cultural sights along the way, you can also ride the routes on an e-bike.
Finally, the Tours don’t only portray Baden-Württemberg's outstanding culture, they also take you through the region’s beautiful nature. You ride through the southern foothills of the Black Forest, enjoy wide views over the Rhine Valley, cycle across the Vosges plateau, and explore the re-naturalised upper reaches of the Danube and the River Neckar, as it winds its way through the countryside before flowing into the Rhine. Your experience in the region is rounded off by delicious Swabian and Baden cuisine and the brewery restaurants which are well-supplied to replenish your electrolytes.
This half-day tour east of Stuttgart takes you in a moderate loop from the Remstal up to the Hohenstaufen and back to the Rems. Your starting point is in Schwäbisch Gmünd directly at the train station, which can be easily reached with the regional train from Stuttgart.On the German Limes Cycle Route you head west out of the city and the first highlight is already waiting for you: Before you have reached the city limits, you can examine an old fortification on the Limes and not far from it the roughly recognizable remains a Roman fort.After you have visited the monastery of the same name in Lorch a little later, you leave the Remstal and slowly but steadily begin the ascent to the Hohenstaufen. First, the path leads you through the idyllic Beutental. While you are continuously pedaling, enchanted by the landscape, before you know it you have reached the laundry castle, where you can take a breather before you set out on the somewhat more demanding ascent on the Hohenstaufen.From here you have to overcome about 240 meters in altitude up to the summit of the mountain - but by now you are well warmed up, so the last part is not a major problem. At the top you will have a wonderful view of the Remstal and the Swabian Alb rewarded. Directly at the castle ruins you will also find a nice café-restaurant where you can recharge your batteries.The hearty Swabian cuisine is sure to put a smile on your face as well as the view of the rest of the altitude profile of the tour: On the way back to Schwäbisch Gmünd you can expect a few great descents and hardly any notable climbs - you have that too more than earned. Over the ridge of the Aasrücke, the route takes you leisurely back to the Remstal, where you will soon have reached your destination.By the way: If the ascent on the Hohenstaufen is a bit too much of a good thing for you, you can skilfully bypass it: On the outskirts of Wäschenbeuren you can branch off onto the railway cycle path of the former Hohenstaufenbahn. This leads almost completely flat to the finish line in Schwäbisch Gmünd. At Hohenstaufen you only drive past instead of up - but the view of the mountain is also a small highlight.
It is worth planning a whole day for this tour through the Neckar Valley. Not only that there are many castles waiting to be explored along the way, if you don't just want to take a quick photo everywhere, it takes a good one to two hours to look at the huge, stately buildings - you should plan this time.It starts in the idyllic village of Neckarsteinach on the Neckar - an appropriate starting point for today's tour, because from the opposite bank of the Neckar you can enjoy an excellent view of the four (!) Castles of the village. You can easily reach Neckarsteinach with the Neckar Valley Railway from Mannheim, Heilbronn or Stuttgart.From the train station, the path first leads you to the opposite bank of the Neckar. Here you drive a small loop to the east via Mückenloch and Neuhof, which simplifies the ascent to the Dilsberg Castle for you a little. During the subsequent descent you circle the Dilsberg halfway until you reach the Neckar loop at the foot of the mountain. From here you have one of the best views of the four castles of Neckarsteinach.It continues comfortably along the Neckar until the second short, but quite neat climb up to Heidelberg Castle is waiting for you in Heidelberg. It is worthwhile to allow a good amount of time to visit the well-preserved ruins. The view of Heidelberg, which is picturesque on the Neckar, is probably one of the most beautiful in the city from the castle parapet. The old town also invites you to linger and have strengths with its many small restaurants and cafés.The “Burgenstraße cycle path” then takes you across fields and meadows directly to Schwetzingen Castle, where the spacious castle park invites you to take a leisurely stroll - it is best to park your bike safely in front of the park. Before you get to the final spurt, you will find regional craft beer specialties just after Schwetzingen in the Welde brewery, which, combined with a delicious burger, will provide you with strength for the last few kilometers.As soon as you have reached the Neckar again, you are almost at your destination in Mannheim. The path still leads a few kilometers along the river through the suburbs, then you switch from the Neckar to the vicinity of the banks of the Rhine, where the magnificent baroque Mannheim Palace invites you to take a short sightseeing tour at the end. The train station is only a few hundred meters from the castle. From here you can also go back to Neckarsteinach.
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This day tour on the edge of the southern Black Forest is quite a bit with just over 70 kilometers. Although the way back is exclusively on relaxed bike paths downstream of the Rhine, if you want you can just sit comfortably on the train and return to your starting point. This saves you a whole 32 kilometers, which also saves you a lot of time to enjoy the sights even more extensively.The starting point of the tour is in Müllheim (Baden) at the train station - easily accessible from Freiburg or Weil am Rhein by regional train. The path first leads you through Müllheim, directly towards the Black Forest. Before you immerse yourself completely in it, the tour turns south near Badenweiler. One or the other hill awaits you here on the edge of the low mountain range - great views included.In Badenweiler it is worth visiting the Roman bath ruins and the castle, there is also a lot to discover in the adjacent spa park. Via Sehringen you continue south. With the exception of a small depression near the Blauenbachtal, it goes continuously uphill for the next eight kilometers. Fortunately, the gradient remains in a moderate range for most of the time, only shortly before reaching Schloss Bürgeln does it hike above the ten percent mark for a moment.Once at the top you will reap the reward for your efforts: a fabulous view over the Rhine Valley to the Vosges. Incidentally, a café-restaurant is attached to the castle and what could be nicer than rewarding yourself twice for your efforts ... As everyone knows, all good things come in threes and accordingly the subsequent descent to Kandertal will put a smile on your face conjure up.You follow the Kander for a good part to the south, until you branch off again at Wittlingen up to the last foothills of the Black Forest. The ascent is short, but also quite crisp, but at the top you will again be rewarded with a fantastic view - this time over Lörrach, towards the Alps and the Vosges.Via Eimeldingen you drive past the local train station back into the Rhine Valley. If you want, you can follow the tour and cover the last 32 kilometers by bike - the bike path along the Rhine is absolutely relaxed. Alternatively, the regional train runs from Eimeldingen back to Müllheim about twice an hour.
This round tour leads you first on a good section through the lovely Taubertal, then on the hill between Tauber and Jagst and from Niederstetten following the Vorbach back to your starting point in Weikersheim.After you have started the tour at Weikersheim train station, the first highlight is waiting for you: Weikersheim Castle. It is considered one of the most beautiful castles in Hohenlohe. The adjoining, baroque palace garden is just as beautiful to look at. As the castle is right at the beginning of the tour, you can also visit it at the end if you want to start pedaling a little.You now follow the Tauber to Bad Mergentheim, where the next magnificent palace complex is waiting to be explored by you. After about a third of the total distance, it is also worth taking a short break in the old town of Bad Mergentheim: many cafés and a few nice restaurants invite you to take a first snack here.You can use the extra portion of energy, because for the next twelve kilometers it is always a little more uphill until you have climbed the plateau between Tauber and Jagst shortly before Herbsthausen. Another small sink, then you can reward yourself for your efforts in the Herbsthäuser brewery restaurant with cool, isotonic drinks and matching, regional dishes.You still have to cross a few hills before you go back down into the valley at Niederstetten. You now follow the Vorbach back to Weikersheim, where it flows into the Tauber. Your tour ends where it began: at the local train station. The closest larger cities that you can reach by train from here are Tauberbischofsheim in the north and Crailsheim in the south.
The last tour of this collection takes you back in time. Baroque gardens and stately castles were looked for in vain. It is all the more impressive that the buildings have been preserved to this day. These are the oldest monuments of this size north of the Alps, created by the Celts during the Hallstatt Period, a late Iron Age from around 800 to 450 BC.You start east of Sigmaringen just outside the village of Herbertingen directly at the train station. You can reach this by train, for example, from Sigmaringen or Tuttlingen from the west and from the northeast from Ulm. Overall, you can plan a good half a day for today's route, maybe a little longer, depending on how long you want to stop at the individual stations.True to its motto, the tour first takes you past the Celtic Museum in Hundersingen. Here you can find out more about the local excavation sites and settlements before you go looking for clues yourself.The Heuneburg open-air museum with its surrounding burial mounds - a total of 50 in total, but only a few of them are recognizable as such today - is certainly the definite highlight of the tour. Around 5,000 people are said to have lived here in the late Iron Age - quite a lot for that time.Past the burial mounds, the path leads you over comfortable forest paths through dense forest until you can make a detour to the “Alte Burg” excavation site shortly after Langenenslingen. Much of the former facility in the middle of the forest can no longer be seen, but no effort was spared to show the visitor as realistically as possible what it might have looked like back then.From Riedlingen, the route runs relaxed in the Danube valley, which has been renatured in parts here. From the path you can see some water birds and, with a little patience, maybe some wild animals. But even without animal sightings, the green landscape is a feast for the eyes.The prince grave mound Bettelbühl completes this little journey through time. The seven burial mounds have been leveled by agriculture over the centuries to such an extent that only the highest of them is more or less visible today. A short time later you will reach your destination in Herbertingen.