Westfalen Bahn

As flat as it gets – cycling in Emsland in northern Germany

Uwe Jelting

As flat as it gets – cycling in Emsland in northern Germany

Bike Touring Collection by Westfalen Bahn

8

Tours

22:30 h

217 mi

2,425 ft

Emsland may be flat, but this district in northwestern Germany is far from boring. With varied landscapes and the crashing waves of the North Sea, Elmsland is a great place to explore by bike. In this Collection, we present eight wonderful rides in the flatland between the towns of Papenburg and Lingen. The routes will take you along the River Ems as it flows towards the sea. You can also make a small detour into the nearby Netherlands to learn more about the region’s cultural diversity.

We’ve planned these rides as relaxed day trips, with lots of opportunities to take a refreshing dip in a quarry pond, so don’t forget to pack your swim stuff in your panniers. Along the way, you ride through quaint villages and old towns where you can find plenty of places to stop for a break.

In between the towns, sprawling floodplains, rugged upland moors, and endless fields await. And the best part? You can reach the start of the routes easily and sustainably by train. All of the rides start and end at a train station connected to the WestfalenBahn, the regional train network. The Emsland Tour Ticket is a good, budget-friendly option; you can travel to and from the routes with your bike. If you plan to stay longer in the region, you could also make one of the pretty towns along the river your basecamp.

A network of beautiful cycling paths unravel the region’s subtle beauty. Emsland is made for cyclists – from mile crunchers to free-wheelers. Hop on your saddle, forget about life’s everyday stress, and get pedaling through this flat region!

On The Map

Tours & Highlights

  • Intermediate
    02:01
    20.5 mi
    10.2 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    This 30 kilometer bike tour takes you along the middle Ems. On the first half of the tour you follow the river on its winding course through the Emsland to the reservoir near Geeste. Then it goes back in a straight line along the Dortmund-Ems Canal to Meppen, the starting point of the route. If the whole lap is too long for you, you can take the train from Geeste back to Meppen and save yourself the last kilometers along the canal.From the train station in Meppen it is worthwhile to warm up a little round through the beautiful old town. Then you leave the place and soon cross the Ems for the first time. You cycle along a beautiful path, sometimes closer, sometimes a little further along the river. On the way you always come through cozy towns. At Dalum you turn left and drive to Geeste.

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  • Intermediate
    04:07
    38.2 mi
    9.3 mph
    300 ft
    300 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    This 65-kilometer circular tour takes you through the northern Emsland and via a swivel through the Netherlands back to your starting point in Aschendorf. A wonderful round with lots of …

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  • Intermediate
    02:28
    24.1 mi
    9.8 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    This almost 40 kilometer tour shows you the picturesque Lingener Land. You start your circuit at the train station in Geeste, cycle along the Dortmund-Ems Canal to Lingen and back …

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  • Difficult
    03:52
    33.2 mi
    8.6 mph
    425 ft
    400 ft
    Expert bike ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may require you to push your bike.

    This 50 kilometer bike tour takes you through the beautiful, unspoilt river landscape of the Hare and to the Haselünner Juniper Grove nature reserve. It starts in Meppen on the …

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  • Intermediate
    02:54
    28.9 mi
    10.0 mph
    275 ft
    275 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The Emsland is home to Germany's largest oil fields and one of the largest raised bogs in Europe - a unique landscape that you can get to know on your bike along this almost 50-kilometer tour. After an educational tour through the moor, you can later relax on the banks of the reservoir in Geeste.The starting point of your bike tour is the train station in Meppen. You cycle out of the city in a westerly direction via Schullendamm. You drive through the open, flat landscape for a while until you finally reach the raised bog. The Bourtanger Moor today has a size of approximately 200 square kilometers and is distributed both on the German and the Dutch side. In the 1950s, almost the entire bog was drained under large-scale technical use and developed as pasture or arable land. Today the area is protected and is gradually being restored.

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  • Intermediate
    02:34
    24.8 mi
    9.7 mph
    450 ft
    450 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    On this 40-kilometer circuit you cycle through the Lingen region, discover mystical stone tombs and idyllic landscapes, including an extensive break at Lake Sall. The route starts at the train station in Lingen. You leave the city in a westerly direction and soon cycle through the flat, open landscape.After almost seven kilometers you can take a break in Baccum. In the village is the so-called "Ecumenical Center", a large space between the Catholic and the Evangelical Church, which is used by the community for joint events.You continue cycling, sometimes through the forest, sometimes through a cozy village. In Freren you turn left and reach the megalithic grave with its more than 20 meter long burial chamber. Of the probably eleven capstones, only four are still intact. A little further you can take a break on the shore of Lake Saller. Make yourself comfortable in the café or find a quiet place on the banks of the water.

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  • Intermediate
    02:10
    22.4 mi
    10.3 mph
    175 ft
    175 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    The city of Papenburg an der Ems is world famous for its shipyard. Along this 35 km long circuit you cycle along the grounds of the Mayer shipyard and may …

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  • Intermediate
    02:24
    24.5 mi
    10.2 mph
    300 ft
    300 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    This almost 40 km long route takes you from Lathen to Haren and back again. Pack your swimming trunks on a beautiful summer day, because you can take a refreshing …

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    8
  • Distance
    217 mi
  • Duration
    22:30 h
  • Elevation
    2,425 ft

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