Antarctica & Arctic
The beautiful Alpine setting of Lake Constance, shared by Austria, Germany and Switzerland, is home to one of the most popular cycle paths in Europe.
On this self-guided cycling holiday you follow the flat, car-free and gentle cycle path around the lakeshore. The trip starts in the charming university town of Konstanz and along the way you will see thermal spas, idyllic villages and vineyards
Overnight in the historic towns of Konstanz, Stein am Rhein, Meersburg and Lindau as well as the festival town of Bregenz
Enjoy a classic route around the entire lake on cycle paths or quiet roads
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You start your holiday in Konstanz (Constance) - Lake Constance's biggest city on the lake and located in Germany. Some 600 years ago this was where the Council of Constance took place, the only council to elect a pope that was held north of the Alps. The Rhine leaves Lake Constance here on its way to the North Sea. Only a few minutes by foot from the medieval town centre is the Swiss town of Kreuzlingen with its lively harbour. Depending on availability you may be staying in Kreuzlingen instead. Your bike will be delivered either today or tomorrow morning and you will be required to sign an agreement of care upon receipt of the bike.
Today's ride takes a route around the German northern shores of the Untersee (Lower Lake) that connects to the Rhine. The town of Radolfzell grew around a monastery founded in 826 AD as a 'cell' under Bishop Radolf of Verona. The town belonged to the Abbey of Reichenau, then subsequently to the house of Habsburg becoming a Free Imperial City for 40 years. Worth visiting is the 15th century gothic Cathedral of our Dear Lady, decorated in baroque style in the 18th. Continue along the Höri peninsula, where Hermann Hesse once lived you cross the 'green border' into the Swiss town of Stein am Rhein, which has a very picturesque old town. (B)
Your total cycling distance today is approximately 45 kilometres (100 metres total ascent).
This morning you continue cycling around the Untersee, as you ride back towards Konstanz on the southern shores through picturesque Swiss fishing villages. Once back in Germany you ride north through Konstanz to Wallhausen where a short boat crossing with your bike takes you to Uberlingen. The route then continues to the former imperial town of Uberlingen with its gothic minster and beautiful esplanade. (B)
Your total cycling distance today is approximately 44 kilometres (185 metres total ascent).
Continuing along the lakeside, take your time to explore Meersburg an unspoiled baroque town with the oldest inhabited castle in Germany. The terrace of the New Castle as well as the fortress offer the most unimpeded outlook over the lake and the impressive alpine range on clear days. Continue through vineyards to Friedrichshafen and stop for a rest at one of the cafes on the bustling promenade, one of the longest and most beautiful on Lake Constance. You end the ride meandering through orchards to Kressbronn. According to hotel availability at time of booking you may need to cycle one kilometres further to spend the night in nearby Nonnenhorn. (B)
Your total cycling distance today is approximately 50 kilometres (85 metres total ascent).
Today's first highlight is the charming Castle Montfort in Langenargen, built in a Moorish style. Adjacent to the castle is Germany's first suspension bridge, the Argenbrücke. Next, you will be cycling through orchards until you reach the Bavarian town of Lindau - a must-do is to visit the city centre on the island, full of medieval and half-timbered buildings. From here is a short ride to the Austrian border and the festival town of Bregenz, where you should visit the floating stage, go for a swim in the lake and visit the well preserved upper town. Once you arrive in Hard, you cross the Rhine, which flows in from the Swiss Alps. The estuary is an important nature reserve. Your final destination for the day is Höchst in Austria. According to hotel availability at time of booking you may spend the night in Rorschach just across the border, in Switzerland. (B)
Your total cycling distance today is approximately 35 kilometres (50 metres total ascent) if staying in Hochst or 50 kilometres if staying in Rorschach.
The last ride is devoted to the Canton of Thurgau which is endearingly known as 'Mostindien' (Cider India) because of its huge apple orchards and slightly remote location, at least from the Swiss perspective. The route takes you along the banks of the lake to the old St. Gallen harbour town of Rorschach with its stately public buildings and unmissable Kornhaus (granary) built in 1749. Bathing in the lake here is also very popular. Continue riding through several small villages back to Konstanz. (B)
Your total cycling distance today is approximately 40 kilometres (75 metres total ascent) if starting from Rorschach or 55 kilometres if starting from Hochst.
After breakfast, the organised part of your holiday comes to an end. (B)
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