OSTSEEfjordSCHLEI

Thatched roofs, smoked eel and rural idyll – cycling on the Baltic Sea Schlei Fjord

© Anna Leste Matzen

Thatched roofs, smoked eel and rural idyll – cycling on the Baltic Sea Schlei Fjord

Bike Touring Collection by OSTSEEfjordSCHLEI

Stretching 26 miles (42 km) from the Baltic Sea in North Germany, the Schlei Fjord is a fascinating area. Formed during the last Ice Age, various tribes and people have settled along the Schlei. As you cycle, you will discover traces of the Stone Age, Nordic history, and of course, the Age of the Vikings, as well as countless regal manors and estates.

Today, the Schlei is a nature park brimming with wildlife. You can enjoy the flora and fauna whilst undertaking various leisure pursuits such as sailing, hiking and, of course, cycling on the estuary between Kiel and Fleinsburg.

In this Collection, we present 20 themed cycling routes to guide you around this splendid region on your bike. From the smallest town in Germany to the oldest herring fence in Europe, from Baltic Sea beaches to swimming lakes, and from Viking history and to romance stories, there is something for everyone on the Baltic Sea Schlei fjord.

Ranging in length from 15.5 - 25 miles (25 and 40 km), the routes can comfortably be completed in a day or half day. All of the routes are circular so you will return to your starting point. The last Ice Age left behind gentle hills here, so you won’t have any big climbs. However, the region is notoriously windy so your legs might have to push against a head wind. You’ll find small cafés and fish restaurants to keep you energised as you ride, as well as countless sandy beaches along the Baltic Sea and the Schlei.

On The Map

Tours & Highlights

    Difficult
    00:51
    7.19 mi
    8.5 mph
    150 ft
    150 ft
    Expert bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Some portions of the Tour may require you to push your bike.

    This tour around Niesgrau is short, but all the more varied. You start your tour on a former railway line that leads you through the forest. You cycle along idyllic dirt roads to Koppelheck, where you can enjoy a delicious cake in the Café Kranz.A few minutes later you can reach the great sandy beach at Ohrfeldhaff. Here you can pause briefly and enjoy the sound of the sea. The round continues over the mouth of the Lippingau.You follow the renatured river to Gut Oestergaard, where exciting events take place again and again. A short time later you will reach Niesgrau, the starting point of the tour.

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    Intermediate
    04:03
    31.7 mi
    7.8 mph
    350 ft
    350 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    On this 50 km long tour we show you all sorts of living history west of Schleswig. Take your time for the museums and don't forget your bathing suit! The start of the tour is near Jübek, where you can get to by train. You can also travel directly from Schleswig by bike.You cycle through idyllic nature on the Stapelholmer Weg, a medieval trade route. In Hollinghuus archaeological finds testify of the great importance during the Viking Age. From Ellingstedt it is worth taking a small detour to the Danewerk. It is one of the largest archaeological monuments in Northern Europe and once protected the Kingdom of Denmark.The best way to get there is to turn right in Ellingstedt. After about a kilometer, the wall begins on the left, which you can follow to Dannewerk. In Hüsby you will meet the original route again.At the end of the round you drive on the Ochsenweg, an over 4,000 year old trade route, to the Arenholzer See, which is a very beautiful swimming lake. There you can really enjoy nature again and treat yourself to a tasty snack at the kiosk.

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  • Difficult
    01:23
    10.7 mi
    7.7 mph
    275 ft
    300 ft
    Expert bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Some portions of the Tour may require you to push your bike.

    There is so much to discover in and around Schleswig! The city at the western end of the loop is bursting with cultural highlights. But there are also idyllic, quiet spots and gems in Schleswig enough.On this tour you embark on an exciting tour of discovery by bike. Let's go at the train station. The first big highlight is the Gottorf Castle, which is located on an island in the Burgsee. Then the route winds to the baroque garden and past the old town to the harbor.Shortly before the Cape of Freedom you can jump into the cool water of the Schlei on an idyllic natural bathing beach. Then you drive through the historic old town and through the park back to the train station. If you have a little more time, a detour to the historic fishing village of Holm and of course to the Schleswig Cathedral is worthwhile.

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    Intermediate
    00:31
    4.74 mi
    9.3 mph
    50 ft
    50 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    South of the Gelting Bay, a particularly beautiful bike path through nature awaits you. You are very close to the sea on partly tiny paths.The round begins on the beach, right at the mouth of the Lippingau. You follow the bike path, which sometimes leads along the sea as a narrow path, sometimes as a gravel path. The view of the bay is simply wonderful.You drive back over the Gut Ohrfeld and Koppelheck, where you can enjoy a delicious cake in the Café Kranz. Then it's just a short hop back to the beach where you can relax extensively.

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    Easy
    00:30
    4.56 mi
    9.1 mph
    100 ft
    100 ft
    Easy bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Not far from the Geltinger Birk nature reserve and the Geltinger Bay, this small round through the fields invites you to discover small sneak paths.In Niesgrau you leave the bike path on the road and drive via Winnery to Lüchtoft. You can even see the Baltic Sea in the background from the gentle hills.Sometimes you drive on small, asphalted streets, sometimes on field and forest paths. The last piece from the wooden paddock back to Niesgrau is interesting from a historical point of view, because you are driving on a former railway line through the forest.

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    Intermediate
    02:41
    24.5 mi
    9.2 mph
    700 ft
    700 ft
    Ferry
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels. The Tour includes a crossing by ferry.

    The Vikings shaped the history of northern Europe for more than 200 years. The name comes from the Old Norse "Vikingr" and means as much as robbers or looters. It is a collective term for various Scandinavian tribes and peoples, which included many peaceful traders and craftsmen.The Baltic Sea fjord Schlei was one of the most important lifelines of the Viking Age. Haithabu was one of their most important coastal settlements, today there is a great Viking museum here.Here you also start your Viking trip by bike. In less than 40 kilometers you circle the westernmost part of the Baltic Sea fjord Schlei. You drive through Schleswig, a pretty town with many historic sights, such as the Gottof Palace, the Baroque garden and the fishing district.On the drive through the hinterland are always small, idyllic villages along your way. Between the nature reserves you drive a few times directly to the water, where you can bathe on the great beaches. Just before you reach your starting point again, the path takes you along the coast for a while and you enjoy a fantastic panorama of Schleswig and the fjord.

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    Easy
    01:27
    13.7 mi
    9.4 mph
    275 ft
    275 ft
    Easy bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Between 1150 and 1200 many Romanesque churches, also called Feldsteinkirchen, were built in the landscape fishing. Of course, the churches were rebuilt and expanded over time, but they are still the center of the villages.The 20-kilometer-long and simple church trip starts at the beach of Winningmay, where you can park your car and jump into the cool water after the bike ride. On a magnificent bike path you drive to Brodersby, where the first interesting church awaits you. Here the bell tower is lower than the church roof.Continue through dreamy villages to Tolk, where you will find one of the oldest churches in the fishing area. It was first mentioned in 1192. On your way back to Winnigmay, drive past the St. Jacob's Church in Moldenit, perched on a hill above the village.

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    Intermediate
    02:12
    20.0 mi
    9.1 mph
    550 ft
    550 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    You start the 32-kilometer bathing lake cruise at the end of the Baltic Sea fjord Schlei in the pretty town of Schleswig. The city has been an important trading center since the Vikings and the dukes of Guttorf made Schleswig the cultural center of Northern Europe.The area is known not only for cultural highlights, but also for the beautiful nature, through which you can ride wonderfully by bike. These include, among others, the lakes that you will explore along this tour.On small roads you drive north to the Langsee, where the first bathing place is waiting for you. Afterwards you drive around the Langsee until you reach the Idstedter See. You can either follow the road or push along a narrow path directly along the shore. At the other end of the lake you will find a pretty, small swimming area.Back to Schleswig you drive a bit through the forest on a very special cycle path, the so-called ox road. It follows a historic traffic route from Denmark to Germany, where up to 50,000 oxen were driven annually from Jutland to Wedel. The bathing lake cruise finally ends at the harbor of Schleswig, where you will find several beaches and the Luisenbad in the immediate vicinity.

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    Intermediate
    02:09
    22.1 mi
    10.3 mph
    375 ft
    375 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The numerous mansions in the region bear witness to an exciting past. The HerrenhausTörn leads you to several estates, all of which tell a different story.You start in Sieseby, one of the most beautiful villages on the Schlei. The whole village with its thatched half-timbered houses is a listed building and was originally built for the fishermen and day laborers of the neighboring estate Bienebek.On small roads you meander through the beautiful, slightly undulating landscape from farm to farm. On the outskirts of Rieseby you drive to Gut Hörst, which today still manages the surrounding fields.Past Gut Saxtorf and Gut Erichshof you will reach one of the most impressive mansions in the area, the Gut Ludwigsburg. It was built around a former medieval moated castle. Today, the estate is booked for events and in the old smokehouse in the manor you can strengthen yourself with delicious coffee and cake.The path to Vogelsang-Grünholz takes you on a freight path through a beautiful natural landscape. Around Vogelsang, a little off the track, you will find the goods Grünholz and Damp. If you follow the bike path from Gut Damp further east, you will reach a beautiful sandy beach. From Vogelsang you can reach your starting point Sieseby in half an hour.

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    Intermediate
    02:17
    19.8 mi
    8.7 mph
    500 ft
    500 ft
    Ferry
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels. The Tour includes a crossing by ferry.

    Around the Schlei you can taste the special culinary delights of Schleswig-Holstein. Here you will find romantic cafés, country inns, fish smokehouses and cideries. So you can feast without a guilty conscience, we have the epicurean places connected by a 32-kilometer bike path.You start in Brodersby and drive on small roads to Hestoft, where a lovingly designed cottage garden awaits you. Continue to Lindau. In several places along the way, you can make a short detour to one of the many swimming spots right on the Schlei, such as in the pretty village of Gunneby.You cross the loop on the Lindaunis Bridge, which is alternately driven by cars, bicycles, pedestrians and the railway. When a ship approaches, the bridge is folded up. On the other side of the loop you have a nice view from Obststub Stubbe and you can taste a delicious piece of cake in the café.Your way leads you through the hinterland to Gut Hörst, which is still managed. After driving through the picturesque village of Rieseby, you will drive past a great mill to Ornumer Noor, the narrowest loop of the Schlei. Shortly after, you will reach your starting point again.

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    Intermediate
    02:27
    23.0 mi
    9.4 mph
    425 ft
    425 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    For about 100 years, the Schleswig-Angler-Crossing commuted between Schleswig and Süderbrarup. The last train left in 1981, then the tracks were dismantled. What has remained is a natural cycling path, the Alte Kreisbahntrasse.On this tour we will first show you the northern part of the route. You start directly at Süderbrarup station, which you can reach by train from Flensburg or Kiel. Afterwards you drive on the old circular railway line to Taarstedt.In Taarstedt you leave the former railway line and drive via Brodersby and Ulsnis to Lindau. Again and again, you can make a little dangling loop where you can find one or the other swimming, such as Gunneby.In Lindau you can make a short detour to the interesting bascule bridge, which is alternately used by cars and by the railway. On small roads you drive through idyllic villages back to Süderbrarup.

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    Intermediate
    02:15
    19.6 mi
    8.7 mph
    300 ft
    300 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    Thatched houses belong to the landscape of fishing and Schwansens like the Schlei and the Baltic Sea. Since the people settled here, the roofs are covered with dried reeds. Due to the risk of fire, thatched roofs in the cities were replaced by hard roofs, but the thatched roof has retained its significance in rural areas until today.On the more than 31 kilometers long thatched roof you will explore some of the most beautiful thatched houses in the area. You start in Sieseby, a beautiful idyllic village that is now completely listed. Originally the thatched cottages were built for fishermen and day laborers of the neighboring estate Bienebek.You drive on beautiful paths through a landscape that is characterized by agriculture. Small forests, ponds, manors and hamlets loosen up the area. After you have made about half of your stage, you reach the beautiful sandy beach of Damp directly on the Baltic Sea.About half an hour later you reach Karby. In the middle of the pretty village stands the early Gothic brick church, originally built around 1300, which burnt down three times. The last few kilometers back to Siesby you drive on a nice path directly at the Schlei.

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    Easy
    01:49
    15.5 mi
    8.5 mph
    350 ft
    350 ft
    Ferry
    Easy bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels. The Tour includes a crossing by ferry.

    At about 42 kilometers, the Schlei is the longest Baltic Sea fjord in Schleswig-Holstein. The ZDF television series "The Country Doctor" has become known throughout Germany owes the region also the tourist brand name: Baltic Sea fjord Schlei.The Schlei connects the landscapes fishing in the north and Schwansen in the south. At its widest point it measures four kilometers, at the narrowest it is just 135 meters wide. On the 25 kilometer SchleiuferTörn you drive once around the middle part of the fjord and see on the tour everything, for which the area is known.You start in Arnis, the smallest city in Germany. While countless boats swing in the harbor, the charm of the mid-19th century awaits you in the city center. The first few miles lead you west. You can either drive a bumpy piece right along the shore or take the main road.On your way you pass the mill Gödersby, one of many still existing mills around the loop. You follow the shore with always wonderful views of the fjord to Lindaunisbrücke. Alternating cars, bicycles and the railway cross the special bascule bridge.The next town on your tour is Sieseby, which is fully listed. The pretty town center consists of thatched timbered houses. Your return journey will take you along the southern shore of the Schlei until you cross it by ferry and return to Arnis.

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    Intermediate
    02:19
    24.3 mi
    10.5 mph
    600 ft
    600 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The idyllic landscape around the Baltic Sea fjord Schlei forms the backdrop for the popular ZDF evening series "Der Landarzt". On the nearly 40-kilometer rural doctor's trip you explore the area by bike and drive past some locations.You start the tour at the train station in Süderbrarup, which you can reach by train from Kiel or Flensburg, and leave the town to the south. Shortly before Lindaunis worthwhile for real "country doctor" fans a detour about one kilometer long over Lindau Lindauhof, the picturesque estate where the series was filmed. Today, Café Lindauhof is located there.Shortly before Arnis, the smallest city in Germany, one of many preserved mills in the area is on your way. Then you drive towards Kappeln, where a small detour to the city center is worthwhile. Right on the harbor you can fortify yourself with fish rolls and smoked eel, before you cycle on small roads through the glacial landscape.The places and streets were often locations of the "country doctor". A bit off the track in Wagersrott lies the Holländerhof. There lives during the shooting of the herbal doctor Hinnerksen. In fact, there is a local history museum in the courtyard with historical machines and utensils from Angelner farms. From there it is only a few kilometers back to Süderbrarup.

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    Easy
    01:51
    18.3 mi
    9.9 mph
    400 ft
    400 ft
    Ferry
    Easy bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels. The Tour includes a crossing by ferry.

    Culinary the focus on the Baltic Sea fjord Schlei course in the water. On the almost 30-kilometer HeringsTörn you explore places where fish are caught, processed and eaten.Your trip begins at the port of Kappeln. South of the bascule bridge is the Kappelner Museumshafen, where forgotten ship types creaking rocked by the waves. Not far from here is the 500-year-old and last functional herring fence in Europe, a proven over 10,000 years fishing system.Over the bascule bridge you leave Kappeln towards the Baltic Sea to the Schleimündung. There, in addition to floating houses, a beautiful beach awaits you, inviting you to swim and linger. The next stop is Karby, a pretty village with an early Gothic brick church.Then you drive to the loop, which you cross with a ferry. On the other side is Arnis, the smallest city in Germany. With only 0.45 square kilometers you have quickly explored Arnis, the Votive Church and the Long Road and still have plenty of time to strengthen you in one of the many good fish restaurants.The last stage leads you slightly hilly around Kappeln. Before you return to the harbor, you will pass a beautiful swimming and barbecue area. In Kappeln your HeringsTörn ends and it is worthwhile to stroll through the old town with a fish sandwich or to stop by in the eel smokehouse.

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    Easy
    01:53
    19.5 mi
    10.4 mph
    425 ft
    425 ft
    Easy bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The more than 31 kilometers long GulyThingTörn leads you through small village ponds and romantic farms. Here you will find nature and idyll pure. In the midst of this idyll lies a place where you can experience several thousand years of history: the Guly thing.Your route starts on the outskirts of Kappeln. You meander along a few lane-field roads through the glacial landscape from one farm or hamlet to the next. Again and again, small forests and streams loosen up the landscape.About halfway you reach the Guly-Thing. For Nordic peoples the Thing was something like a parliament and a court of justice at the same time. Chosen men of a tribe governed the coexistence. The guly thing was faithfully reconstructed. In the immediate vicinity you will also find a rune stone and a dolmen, so a stone grave consisting of carrying stones and a ceiling tile.The way back to Kappeln runs again through pure idyll. When you arrive in Kappeln, you can make a detour to the old town at the end of your tour. Right on the harbor you can fortify yourself with smoked eel and fish sandwiches.

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    Intermediate
    02:12
    20.7 mi
    9.4 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Your 33-kilometer trip to the Baltic Sea dikes begins in the sleepy village of Gelting. There you will find an ideal parking space at the Birkhalle in Wackerballig number 4. You follow the salty sea breeze for about half an hour until you reach the Baltic Sea. Here you will find an almost endless beach and the sea. In good weather you can even see the Danish coast.On natural trails you drive six kilometers on the Baltic Sea dike, listen to the waves and feel the wind. You follow the path until just before the mucus mouth. The estuary is a seabird reserve and closed to humans all year round. At the beginning of the protected area is the bird keeper's hut, where you can find out more about the flora and fauna.Now you drive along the banks of the Schlei and reach the pretty town of Maasholm with its idyllic harbor and romantic thatched roof houses. The way back to Gelting runs through the quiet hinterland, past small farms and hamlets.

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    Intermediate
    01:47
    15.2 mi
    8.5 mph
    175 ft
    175 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    The almost 25 km long GeltingerBirkTörn is all about the nature reserve in the Geltinger Birk. You start in the pretty village of Gelting. There you will find ideal parking at the Birkhalle in Wackerballig number 4. The brick church has been at the center of the town since around 1300. About a kilometer away is the Geltinger Castle, which is one of the oldest aristocratic courts in Angel. The castle is privately owned, but it is still worth a detour.After a few minutes on the bike you can already reach the Baltic Sea and thus the nature reserve Geltinger Birk. Right at the entrance to the Birk, the Charlotte windmill attracts attention. Until 1971, it was used to drain the Beveroer Noore and to grind grain.On nature trails you drive along the coast around the nature reserve. Reed swamps, salt marshes, dunes and sea grass meadows form an excellent biotope for the flora and fauna. Behind the nature reserve begins a sandy beach several kilometers long, so don't forget to pack your bathing suit. Finally, on small roads it goes back to Gelting.

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    Intermediate
    01:46
    16.7 mi
    9.4 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Great for any fitness level. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    Today's bike tour is all about fishing. The many manor houses and manors testify to a rich history and the slightly hilly landscape testifies to the last ice age in Schleswig-Holstein.The approximately 27 kilometer long fishing trip begins in the idyllic village of Gelting. There you will find an ideal parking space at the Birkhalle in Wackerballig number 4. Small hamlets lie on your way through the landscape shaped by the ice age. Typical for this area are the many small fields, which are separated by so-called knicks.After about half of the route you will reach Gut Rundhof. The late baroque mansion was built on the site of a water castle from the 13th century. Today the huge building is privately owned, but in summer concerts are held in the dome hall.Shortly before you reach the Baltic Sea, a detour to Gut Oestergaard is worthwhile. It lies on the eastern edge of the municipality of Steinberg and was built in the mid-19th century. In addition to agriculture, the owner family also runs a café.The path directly on the Baltic Sea is a little bumpy and narrow, but offers you wonderful views of the sea. Take your leisure time and maybe push the bike a bit so that you can experience the impressions that nature gives you even more intensely. At the end of the coastal path you will pass the Geltinger Birk nature reserve before you reach your starting point in Gelting.

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    Intermediate
    01:39
    16.6 mi
    10.1 mph
    500 ft
    500 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The name of the tour through the rolling hills of Anselm and along the Baltic Sea is a program: Again and again, you have wonderful views. Sometimes the view of a small slope suddenly falls on the wide-opening Geltinger Bay, sometimes a secluded curve turns into a secluded beach panorama.You start in the place Steinberg church and drive on small, asphalted side roads over Niesgrau to the Baltic Sea. Once there, awaiting you next to the fresh sea breeze a great way through the forest and along the coast. A detour to Gut Oestergaard is worthwhile for a trip to the corn labyrinth.You drive along the coast, sometimes a bit in the hinterland, where you can always enjoy a beautiful panorama of the sea. The landscape is constantly changing: bogs, forests, meadows are your companions on the PanoramaTour. Of course, you also have the opportunity to jump into the water on one of the sandy beaches.After leaving the Baltic Sea behind you, a gentle ascent follows Scheersberg. In the middle of the village is the 1903 built Bismarckturm. From the 32 meter high tower you have a wonderful panoramic view over the fjord to Denmark. You are now almost 90 meters above sea level. From here it is still a good ten minutes by bike to your starting point.

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    20
  • Distance
    348 mi
  • Duration
    38:01 h
  • Elevation
    7,025 ft

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OSTSEEfjordSCHLEI

Thatched roofs, smoked eel and rural idyll – cycling on the Baltic Sea Schlei Fjord