From the romantic and ancient university town of Heidelberg via the idyllic Black Forest to beautiful Lake Constance, the Heidelberg-Black Forest-Lake Constance Cycle Route (Heidelberg-Schwarzwald-Bodensee Radweg) is full of fascinating stories. Running virtually north-south, this 300-km / 186-mile route was rated 3* by the German Cyclist’s Association, when it opened in 2018. As well as famous attractions, its six stages offer less well-known spots that reward attention. If you are in Reilingen and St. Leon-Rot in May or June, this is the time to feast on fresh asparagus, straight from the fields. Rich with culture and vineyards, the Kraichgau-Stromberg region is nicknamed the “Land of 1,000 Hills”; so consider renting e-bikes! Next up is Pforzheim, the “City of Gold” with its world-class jewellery museum and long history of jewellery and watch making. Then it is on to the Black Forest‘s unspoiled Nagold Valley and the impressive ruins of Hirsau‘s Benedictine monastery. Stroll round Rottweil, SouthWest Germany’s oldest town, seemingly unchanged in 500 years (and, yes, the town did give its name to the Rottweiler, a butcher’s dog). Visit the mysterious source of the Danube. Climb up to the vast ruins of Hohentwiel Castle, towering high above Singen (TIP: if you can, be there for the summer music festival in July). Then freewheel down to Lake Constance, with its relaxing, balmy climate and finish in Radolfzell, where the old town’s narrow alleyways and large squares host lively weekly and evening markets.
Start: Heidelberg, 90 minutes northwest of Stuttgart