Fascinating river landscapes, majestic low mountain ranges, impressive castles, historic towns with half-timbered buildings, deep forests and wide fields – a bike Tour through Hesse in Germany is extremely diverse and exciting. The Hessian Long-Distance Cycle Route R7 runs through the entire state from the Rhineland-Palatinate border to the Thuringian border.
Along the way, you visit towns such as Limburg an der Lahn, Weilburg, Wetzlar, Giessen, Grünberg, Ulrichstein, Lauterbach and Bad Hersfeld, to name just a few. The first 100 kilometres (62 mi) follow the course of the River Lahn and are relatively easygoing. Next, you cross the Vogelsberg mountains where the terrain is no longer flat. You encounter many of Hesse’s rivers along the way such as the Ohm, Lauter, Jossa and Fulda. Overall, the bike path offers a great mix of flat valleys and occasional climbs through a beautiful low mountain landscape.
I’ve divided the route into four stages. You can easily plan individual sections of the route as day trips thanks to the train stations in all stage towns. Most of the route is paved and possible on a road bike. However, there are occasional gravel sections so a gravel bike or classic touring bike may be the better choice, if in doubt.
Compared to the other long-distance cycle routes in Hesse, there aren’t too many climbs. The route mostly runs along blissfully flat river valleys. In the second half of the route, however, you often leave the valleys and head up a hill or two. Don’t let this put you off as you’re always rewarded with wide views and fast descents.
You can easily reach the starting point in Diez by train or via the Rhine Cycle Path from Koblenz. At the other end of the route, Vacha in Thuringia also has a train station. You have plenty of options. Of course, you can also cycle this route in the other direction if you prefer. On the way, you pass many typical Hessian villages with half-timbered houses and cosy places to stop. Don't miss the regional specialties and take your time to explore the sights.
Hesse has an extensive network of bike paths, including nine different official long-distance bike routes. These numbered paths are linked together at various points so you can easily combine them. In some cases, they also overlap with other cycle paths. By the way, you can also find the other Hessian long-distance cycle routes in my Collections.
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