Along picturesque rivers, impressive reservoirs and through deep forests, the Hessian Long Distance Cycle Route R6 takes you from the Waldecker Land region in northern Hesse to the southern state border near Lampertheim. You cross many different landscapes including the Kellerwald low mountain range, the Taunus peaks and the Hessisches Ried Valley, and discover some of the most beautiful corners of Hesse.
The bike path is mostly paved with some gravel sections that are easy to ride. In northern Hesse, however, it is rarely flat and lots of climbing awaits but you’ll be rewarded with great views and descents. Some of the unpaved sections may be problematic if you ride a road bike with narrow tyres. A classic touring bike is better suited for a Tour on the R6, but you can also have fun here with a gravel bike.
I have divided the 404-kilometre (251 mi) route into six daily stages for you. The first stages are mountainous – it only flattens out during the last stage through the Rhine Valley. Due to the challenging elevation, this route isn’t best suited to children. Fit cyclists or e-bikers can look forward to a varied Tour through the entire state of Hesse. Along the way, there are exciting sights and dreamy places worth discovering. Lake Edersee, the Taunus and the Rhine Valley are just a few of the highlights you will remember after this Tour.
Hesse has an extensive network of bike paths, including nine different official long-distance routes. These numbered paths are linked together at various points so they’re easy to combine. For example, you can reach the starting point in Wrexen by train via Brilon or Warburg. You can arrive via the Diemel Cycle Path by bike. The destination of the last stage, Lampertheim on the Rhine, is also well connected to the rail network. Either take the train directly here or ride the short distance to Worms, where you have an even wider choice of connections. Of course, you can also get around comfortably by bike, for example, via the excellently developed and signposted Rhine Cycle Path.
The first stage starts in tranquil Wrexen an der Diemel. Wrexen is now a district of Diemelstadt. The local stop on the Ruhr Valley Railway is between Brilon and Warburg. You are here in the far north of Hesse on the border with North Rhine-Westphalia. Here the Orpe joins the Diemel. The closest larger cities are Paderborn and Kassel. After you have reached the small town, you can start your bike tour on the Hessian long-distance cycle route R6.
Almost the first half of the stage takes place on the banks of the Edersee, in many loops and with more climbing inserts than you might think. Again and again you enjoy wonderful views of the water and watch the goings on on the lake. Of course there are also some tempting places to stop for a break here. After leaving the lake you follow the Eder to Frankenberg.
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On the third stage you first follow the Wohra to Kirchhain, where it flows into the Ohm. Past Amöneburg, it continues to Homberg. You have meanwhile arrived in the Vogelsberg. Here in Homberg, as in many Hessian cities, you can admire a well-preserved old town with unique half-timbered houses. Some of these buildings are hundreds of years old and are lovingly restored over and over again.
You have now arrived in the Rhine Valley, the sixth and last stage is accordingly flat. Roll out and enjoy is the order of the day. The bike path is perfectly developed and is great to drive on. You drive here through the Rhine meadows between Rhineland-Palatinate and the Hessian Ried, see the mountain road of the Odenwald on the horizon and even make a short detour to the Kühkopf.