Cycling in Germany has been a truly amazing experience, wandering through nature, delicious foods and a very good cycling infrastructure. From long distance, one-day, and sightseeing, there is a route for everyone.
We’ve cycled almost 1100 kilometers throughout Germany and we have used a lot of roads known as ‘’Radwegen’’ which are connected to the ‘’German Cycling Network (German: Radnetz Deutschland)’’. These paths form the national cycling route network of Germany and there are currently 12 long-distance cycling routes, called D-Routes (the "D" stands for "Deutschland’" i.e. Germany) crisscrossing the German nation and were mainly established to promote bicycle tourism. This D-routes are long-distance bike paths, connecting all German regions and offering bicycling tourists attractive connections to interesting places. They offer a wide variety of high-quality, well-developed roads from which you can follow the countless abundance of riverside routes and beautiful paths through the forest. The D-Routes are designed to bring you along most of Germany’s famous highlights which vary from Nature Parks, local restaurants and, architectural buildings. The network is almost completely car-free, so you can ride in peace and safety. When crossing the border to another country it is also very The D-routes are also connected to the European wide ‘’Eurovelo Network’’, so when crossing the border into another country, you’re already on track for your next cycling adventure!
TIP: To recover from a long day of cycling taste one of the many famous beers Germany has to offer. Along the cycling routes there are many so-called ‘’Beer Gartens’’ most of them even have a special cyclist beer called the Radler (German for Cyclist).
The D-Routes: www.radnetz-deutschland.de
Route planner for Southern Germany: www.bayerninfo.de
Eurovelo Network: http://www.eurovelo.com
Traveling by E-Bike:
As this is the first cycling trip in which we use E-bikes, this was also new to us. After the first two weeks, we can say that the E-bikes are holding their ground. The batteries are doing very good in the extreme temperatures we’ve had. The Giant Explorer of Gijs with the dog trailer attached is obviously using more battery than the Liv Amiti of Annebeth. But even heavy loaded, a trailer attached and temperatures of -10 Celsius, we could cycle between 80-100 km on a battery. We had an average daily distance of 85 km, so every day we had to charge our battery. In Germany, we didn’t experience any problems with doing this and we mostly charged our batteries overnight in a hostel, homestay or camping. It is very nice to know that along the Cycling Network there are many charging stations, restaurants and guesthouses. So if you stop for a cup of coffee during your route, it is most likely possible to charge your E-bike for free.
What to See:
- The Donauroute (D-Route 6): This route follows the Donau River and brings you through two typical cultural regions, whose difference can be easily seen while taking this route: the Swabian-Alemannic tradition at the Upper Rhine and the Bavarian culture starting at Donauwörth.
- Visit the famous Black Forest these densely-wooded hills is one of the most visited regions in Germany and it's a true heaven for cyclists and hikers.
- Munchen, the capital of Bavaria is mostly famous because of the yearly Oktoberfest. But besides liters of beers and lederhosen, this amazing city is full of Baroque churches and art museums with so many masterpieces, it’s difficult to know where to begin.
What to eat and drink:
- Frühstück, while many countries are famous for their lunch or dinners habits, Germans are taking their time to enjoy breakfast. Prepare for lots of different cheeses, meats, multiple jams and honey, boiled eggs, fruit and vegetables, smoked fish and of course, every kind of roll or hearty, seeded bread you could dream about.
- A must-try snack is the Currywurst, this delicious Wiener topped with a mix of ketchup and spices, has been the subject for discussion for generations. Many citizens are debating which town produces best, but we think the best way to find out to try them yourself.
- Almost 16:00, time to step off your bicycle for some Kaffee und Kuchen. This tradition often happens in the afternoon to meet with your friends, family or coworkers for socializing while enjoying some coffee and cake.
- Germany is famous for its wide variety of beers and almost every village has its own brewery.
- A very popular beverage in Southern Germany is Schnapps, which is a liquor made of fruits and herbs.
- Spezi, this delicious thirst quencher is a mix of cola and orange soda and can be found all over Germany under many different brands.
Where to stay:
- We are a big fan of Warmshowers, it is an online hospitality platform for touring cyclists. You can get in contact with other cyclists from all over the world, which are willing to host you mostly for free, provide you with information about the region or to just grab a drink and share some amazing stories.
- Along the Cycling Network there is a wide variety of accommodations, from low-budget campgrounds to luxury hotels there is a place for everyone. The easiest and average priced accommodation you can find by looking out for the Gasthaus or "Zimmer Frei" signs, which are locally owned guest houses which provide you with a clean room and a delicious breakfast to start your day.
- For the hardcore and low-budget cyclists, there are also many free-to-use ‘’Schutzhutte’’ along the Cycling Network, which are extremely minimalistic and only provides you with shelter against the elements of nature.
Words to know:
Hallo, wie geht’s?(ha-low, vee gits?) – Hello, how are you?
Es tut mir leid (Es toot mir lied) – I’m sorry
Vielen Dank (vee-len dank) – Thank you very much
Ich habe viel Spaß! (Ikh ha-buh vee-el shpaa) – I’m having a great time!
Ich möchte nach _____ (Ikh muhkh-tuh nakh _____) – I want to go to _____