Ems Cycling Tour
From the old diocesan town to the North Sea
- Münster – Emden
- Daily routes ●●○○○
- Altitude profile ●○○○○
Ø km pro Tag
On the way from Münster to Emden, you cycle through varied countryside. You'll get to know Münsterland, Emsland and East Frisia and finally reach the North Sea. You'll see the Ems getting bigger and bigger and will explore lovely, historic towns on the way. The cycle paths take you through unspoiled countryside with hardly a hill! Emsauen, marshland, moor and heath shape the scenery here. And you will frequently be cycling close to the water. After Papenburg, the Ems becomes tidal and you'll experience the change in the height of the water - quite unusual for a river. You could even get the impression that the water is flowing backwards.
- Booking Code
- Start / Destination
Münster / Emden
8 days / 7 nights
approx. 275 km
Daily routes ●●○○○
between 35 and 65 km, Ø 45 km
Altitude profile ●○○○○
Travel documents available only in German!
- Parking information
Parking available at first hotel, approx. 15 € / day.
No reservation possible through Radweg-Reisen.
- Return to Münster
Self-organised by train, hourly connections, duration approx. 2 hours
- Tour operated by
Local cooperation partner
Day 1: Individual arrival in Münster
Don't set off too late, as the former Westphalian capital has a lot to offer. It is considered to be Germany's friendliest town for cyclists and is also shaped by the almost 50,000 students who live here. The centre features the town's Prinzipalmarkt, lined by elegant houses with stepped gables. You should also visit the cathedral and the castle, and go for a walk around Aasee lake.
Day 2: Münster – Rheine, approx. 65 km
Enjoy a last glance back to Münster's historic quarter and its magnificent houses before you set off on your first section along the Dortmund-Ems canal. At Münster-Gelmer, you cross the Ems over a bridge. Following the sharp curves of this meandering river you will arrive in Emdsdetten, which used to be a centre for basket-makers, who used to make shallow baskets to separate the wheat from the chaff. Today's destination is the town of Rheine.
Day 3: Rheine – Lingen, approx. 40 km
In Rheine you can visit Villa Reni, also known as Falkenhof. The royal manor was built well over 1000 years ago. The monastery and brine pool spa in Bentlage are worth visiting. Just after Rheine, you enter a new Federal state. In Lower Saxony you follow the Ems to Lingen. On the way you will see a windmill still in use, in Emsbüren.
Day 4: Lingen – Meppen, approx. 35 km
Today's route takes you through a former swamp and moor area. Farms and villages were only able to be built sparsely on the sandy higher areas. The cycle tour takes you on to Meppen, an older fortress town at the mouth of the Hase. It also has a very interesting archaeological museum. The Ems changes its character now. Merging as it does with the Dortmund-Ems canal and Hase, you will now be cycling through magnificent waterscapes.
Day 5: Meppen – Papenburg, approx. 65 km
Just a few kilometres on from Meppen you get to Haren. Alongside Emslanddom, Haren is well known for its freight-carrying boats, especially adapted to the Ems and known as "pünten". We can recommend a visit to the baroque water castle at Dankern. Cycle on to Papenburg, the centre of Dutch fen culture and which has made the moors particularly habitable in a very special way. The Meyer shipyard is situated here and produces huge cruise ships, which you can explore as part of a public tour.
Day 6: Papenburg – Leer, approx. 35 km
East Frisia begins between Papenburg and Weener. East Frisia is usually associated with the North Sea and you'll find the atmosphere along the Ems getting more and more maritime. You cycle easily on to Leer via Weener. In the local tea museum, you can find out the secrets behind preparing a Frisian cuppa. And almost everything there is to know about the most popular beverage in Frisia.
Day 7: Leer – Emden, approx. 35 km
In Leer, everything rotates around the harbour and the North Sea. But you can also visit the many stately houses and churches in the town's historic quarter, which are a reminder of the town's century-old history. Leer used to be the former hub of this area. Your last section takes you via Petkum, home of the comedians Otto Waalkes and Karl Dall, to the harbour town of Emden.
Day 8: Individual departure or extended stay
After breakfast, your cycling holiday along the Ems cycle path ends. We would be happy to extend your stay in Emden if you wish.