A fairytale journey through Central Germany – Schwalm Cycle Path


A fairytale journey through Central Germany – Schwalm Cycle Path

Bike Touring Collection by Hannah



2-3 h

/ day

66.7 mi

1,300 ft

2,400 ft

Lose yourself amongst enchanting landscapes as you cycle the Schwalm Cycle Path through Little Red Riding Hood’s country in Central Germany. Following the banks of the River Schwalm for 65 miles (104 km) from its source until it meets the River Eder, you will visit mystical castle ruins and magical scenery. You ride across the Hesse low mountain range which featured in the German folklorists’, the Brothers Grimm, fairy tales. With a little luck, you may even bump into the girl with the red hood on your journey.

This Collection, guides you along the Schwalm Cycle Path in three stages, each varying in length from 20 to 25 miles (32 - 40 km). You can ride them as individual day trips or together as a weekend adventure. The route is suitable for all abilities from beginner to sport-enthusiasts. The first stage includes rapid descents, whilst the second and third stages are mostly flat.

The path takes you through an idyllic fairytale world far away from busy roads. From the Schwalm spring, you ride through the magnificent Vogelsberg forest and down into the valley. Next, you’ll visit an extinct volcanic area and medieval villages until you reach Little Red Riding Hood’s home in Schrecksbach, the endpoint of stage one. On stage two, the trail continues along the Schwalm’s winding river bank, past extraordinary nature reserves, to Bad Zwesten, a spa town with seven natural springs. The last stretch takes you to glistening swimming lakes where you can spot rare birds. Finally, you ride along the picturesque Schwalm Estuary to the three-castle town of Felsberg, concluding your fairytale journey.

There are various accommodation options in the stage destinations Schrecksbach, Bad Zwesten, and Felsberg where you can sleep in a tent, hotel, or holiday apartment. You’ll also be well catered for en route at one of the many wonderful restaurants, or you can picnic in the beautiful nature.

The route is easy to reach by train via Mücke (Hess) or Lauterbach (Hess) Nord stations.
From Mücke, you can take the bus ALTVB-76 or 78 to Ulrichstein Lindenplatz in about 20 minutes. In Lauterbach, you can catch the ALTVB-24 to Meiches. From Ulrichstein or Meiches, a short cycle brings you to the Schwalm spring. On the return trip, you can take the regional train from Felsberg to Frankfurt or Kassel.

On The Map


Tours & Highlights

  • Intermediate
    21.7 mi
    10.0 mph
    400 ft
    1,350 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Your cycle tour along the Hessian Schwalm begins at its source, where it takes its course as a hardly noticeable trickle. The source is about nine kilometers from Ulrichstein between …

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  • Intermediate
    24.9 mi
    9.8 mph
    550 ft
    675 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride.

    Your second stage takes you 40 kilometers from Schrecksbach to the spa town of Bad Zwesten. It starts at the foot of the Metzenberg and past Schönfeld, where you can …

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  • Difficult
    20.1 mi
    9.0 mph
    350 ft
    400 ft
    Expert bike ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may require you to push your bike.

    The last stage takes you 32 kilometers to the three-castle town of Felsberg. You start cycling at the foot of the Altenburg mountain, from the top of which you have …

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
  • Distance
    66.7 mi
  • Duration
    06:56 h
  • Elevation
    1,300 ft2,400 ft

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A fairytale journey through Central Germany – Schwalm Cycle Path