Cycling holidays in Lower Saxony and North-Rhine Westphalia
North-Rhein Westphalia and Lower Saxony in the north-west and west of Germany are very varied in terms of their countryside. Nestled between the North Sea, Emsland, Weserbergland, Harz and Wendland, Lower Saxony offers a network of cycle paths of some 11,000 kilometres - a great opportunity to get to know the area. It's the same in North-Rhine Westphalia. Between the lowlands of the Lower Rhine, Cologne Bay, Rothaar mountains and Teutoburg Forest, 13,800 kilometres of cycle paths await you! One thing's for sure - a cycling holiday in Lower Saxony and North-Rhine Westphalia promises a varied tour, no matter whether you prefer a leisurely or sporty trip, on your own or with your family - on the Rhine, in Münsterland, at the North Sea or in East Frisia, along the Weser or on Lüneburg Heath.
On a cycling holiday in North-Rhine Westphalia there's no getting past the Rhine. One of the most beautiful cycle paths is along the Middle Rhine. Starting in Rhineland-Palatinate - in Mainz, this section of the Rhine is the most eventful section. Passing the legendary Drachenfels of the Seven Mountains range, you cycle to the cathedral town of Cologne.
Further in a north-easterly direction of the Rhine, you arrive in Münsterland. On the Pättkes, as the Münsterland people lovingly call their cycle paths, you can pedal at your own pace through lovely parkland, unspoiled forest and moorland and past castles and farms. The bike town of Münster is great and you have to visit the historic old town, Lamberti Church and St. Paulus Cathedral. Also Zwillbrocker Venn with its colony of black-headed gulls or the impressive Lembeck moated castle.
East of Münsterland, at the foot of Teutoburg Forest is where the River Ems springs. Follow the course of the river to the North Sea. Experience the idyllic Ems, as it grows from a simple spring into a stately river. The cycle path takes you alongside the Ems, following a very profile profile, to Münster, passing marsh and moorland at Meppen and then Papenburg, known for its Meyer dockyard. The maritime influence of the North Sea becomes gradually more noticeable and takes you to the seafaring town of Emden. On a cycling holiday in North-Rhine Westphalia and Lower Saxony, discover the Hase River too! It also starts in Teutoburg Forest, winds its way through Osnabrücker Land, through countryside characterised by lovely orchards and rose bushes and the extensive water meadows.
Unique in Germany is the fen area here - an area made arable through colonisation. It charms visitors with its unique moor and marshland. Our fen route along the Ems and the sea cove at Dollart doesn't only take you into southern East Frisia, but also into neighbouring Holland. Enjoy the nature in this tranquil part of the country. Sprinkled with waterways, pretty farmhouses, drawbridges and windmills.
Familiarise yourself with the quirks of Frisia best right here. Cycle to East Frisia and enjoy the expanse of green countryside as well as the maritime flair of this romantic corner of the earth. Admire the stripy lighthouses, watch the coming and going of the boats at sea and the ebb and flow of the tide over a rather nice cup of tea.
Where Werra and Fulda meet in Hannoversch Münden in Lower Saxony, there begins the Weser. The idyll of the hilly Weserbergland with its pretty towns of timber-framed houses, its palaces and castles meets the expanse of the North German flatlands, onwards from Minden. The countryside here is shaped by its marshland, heaths and moors. On our tour to the North Sea, visit the pied piper's town of Hamelin with its buildings that date back to the Weser renaissance, Jordansprudel fountain in Bag-Oeynhausen, Bremen's Schnoor quarter and the Havenwelten in Bremerhaven.
North east of the Weser, the Elbe takes on its final spurt to the North Sea. In "Alte Land", nestled between Hamburg, Buxtehude and Stade you can get to know Germany's biggest fruit-growing region - with hardly a hill in sight. The highest things you have to cycle up in Alte Land are the dikes. A cycling holiday in Alte Land is perfect for switching off and simply enjoying the day as it comes. Always with a breeze in your hair and always with the river Elbe in sight.
The purple bloom of heather and the local Heidschnücke sheep are two good reasons to cycle through Lüneburg Heath. Discover the town that gave the heath its name. It's located on the Ilmenau and beckons with Wilseder Hill, Pietzmoor, Totengrund which, when shrouded in mist, has a very special atmosphere. Don't forget to also see the towns of Celle and Uelzen.
Does your stomach need filling after a day in the saddle? The cuisine in Lower Saxony offers a whole host of rustic dishes. Try some curly kale with Pinkel (the local sausage), tarte of eel and lamb chops or as a dessert, the local Rote Grütze of berries. The Westphalian people like a hearty meal too. Meat dishes such as Rheinische Sauerbraten or Pfefferpotthast (beef) are typical regional cuisine. The unchallenged basic foodstuff here is beer! For example "Kölsch" from Cologne or Altbier from Düsseldorf.