Feel like you need to insert a little more romance in your life? The Romantic Road Cycle Path in Germany is a fantastic way to conjure feelings of emotion (even if that ‘emotion’ is just a deep appreciation for quintessentially Germanic scenery). Despite what the name might suggest, this route is perfect for couples, friends and singletons alike and will leave all its travellers feeling as though they’ve been transported back in time to a fairy-tale medieval world. Not yet sure if the trip’s for you? Read on for more information about spending 10 days on Germany’s Romantic Road cycle path.
What is Germany’s Romantic Road cycle path?
The Romantic Road was initially devised by travel agents as a themed route for tourists in the 1950s. Germany was hoping to inspire travelers to explore the country, particularly southern Germany in Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg. The route consists of 350 kilometres (around 250 miles) of surface roads. When driven, the path can be completed in just a few days, including stops along the way for sightseeing, shopping or dining.
In medieval times, the route was driven by trade, connecting the centre of Germany with the southern region. Today, it offers visitors the chance to see classic German culture and scenery, especially plenty of stunning castles. The route has become a hugely popular cycle path even more so in today’s world where outside adventure and fresh air holiday opportunities come are the flavour of the day with so many benefits that many people embark on to explore the country.
How long does it take to cycle the Romantic Road in Germany?
In general, most cyclists take about 10 days to complete the Romantic Road journey. This makes for a less strenuous trek, allowing for stops at tourist sites along the way. The flexibility of the route also permits travellers to build in extra time if they want to stay longer at specific destinations.
The best part of Germany’s Romantic Road route is the transportation that’s available. A helpful bus route in the same area lets you hop on if you want to skip sections of the route, which is great if you start feeling tired and don’t want to cycle the entire 350 kilometres. The bus can also transport bikes or luggage to the next stop for you.
How difficult is the route?
The Romantic Road tour varies in difficulty. Some parts of the route are fairly flat and easy to ride, while other areas can be a bit more strenuous, such as the sections that have more hills and elevation. If you haven’t done much cycling, the route might be a little more challenging, but you don’t have to be an expert cyclist to get a great deal out of the trip. Try to remember to get plenty of rest at the stops you’re making to help keep your energy levels up, and don’t be ashamed to skip some sections of the route if you’re feeling worn down.
What is the 10-day itinerary for Germany’s Romantic Road?
There are different ways you can tackle the Romantic Road. You can select various starting points if you don’t want to commit to the full ride. However, here’s a sample itinerary that should take you about 10 days to cycle if you want to do the whole thing.
Start in the residential city of Würzburg, then cycle to the Zeller Waldspitze through Franconia. Stop by the village of Uettingen before you reach the town of Wertheim with its castle and medieval town centre.
Travel through the Tauber Valley before you get to the city of Mergentheim. The last stop of the day will be at Weikersheim (its castle is a must-see).
Cycle through Rothenburg ob der Tauber (described as one of the most romantic cities on the route) and stop to pick up a souvenir from the Christmas village that’s active all year. Make sure you take stops to rest, as this portion of the route is uphill. Stop for the night in Schillingsfürst.
Travel along the Sulzach River to the town of Feuchtwangen. Continue on through the scenic Dentleiner Forst and end your day in Dinkelsbühl with a stop at the Cathedral of St. George or one of the city’s several museums.
Explore Oettingen-Wallerstein and Nördlingen, where you can picture exactly what the town would have looked like in medieval times. Land in Harburg for the night. (Note that this leg of the journey can be a little tough for beginning cyclists because of some unpaved roads.)
You’re over halfway through the trip. This stretch is a little shorter than others and the flatter terrain makes it easier for inexperienced cyclists. Check out the picturesque views along the Wörnitz, the Danube and the Lech. Consider taking a break in the city of Donauwörth and end the day in Rain.
Travel along the Lech to the town of Augsburg. There are lots of beautiful monasteries and churches along the way. Finish the day with a pint at one of the many breweries or beer gardens.
Continue following the Lech to Landsberg. Enjoy the Westliche Wälder Nature Park (or stop anywhere along the river for a quick swim). Pass through the villages of Scheuring and Kaufering until you get to Landsberg.
This section does require more effort with more uphill climbs. But you’ll find the destination of Pfaffenwinkel in the Upper Bavarian Alpine foothills that much more rewarding once you arrive. You can also visit Schongau for a look at another historic town. End the day at Wildsteig with an amazing view of the Ammergau Alps.
The Romantic Road saves the best for last. This last 30-kilometre stage starts with a view of the Wies Church and continues through Halblech and past the Bannwaldsee to Schwangau. There are plenty of picture-perfect views of the Hohenschwangau and Neuschwanstein castles too. The town of Füssen will be your last stop.
What should I pack for the trip?
Even if you’re a beginner cyclist, you probably know that one of the most crucial aspects of your journey is having the right gear. Aim to pack a good women’s lightweight waterproof jacket with hood, one which is both comfortable and easy to travel with. The Protected Species women’s waterproof parka comes complete with an ergonomically cut hood which allows complete periphery vision and full head coverage – essential when riding your bike. The best waterproof coats for women are those with a waterproof rating of 10,000mm/h20 or above, fully seam sealed and also have a breathability rating. Your waterproof jacket should protect you from both rain and wind without making you feel hot and sweaty on the bike.
So, are you ready to fall in love with Germany’s Romantic Road cycle path?