Ein Mann und eine Frau sitzen auf einer Bank und blicken auf einen See. Hinter der Bank stehen zwei Fahrräder.

Cycling between the coasts

Radtour entlang einer Weide
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Right in the middle in Schleswig-Holstein, original villages slumber between meadows, forests and moors. The rivers Eider, Treene and Sorge wind their way through the Green Inland. Along the Schlei maritime towns are set in rolling hills. At the end of the estuary is the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Vikings Haithabu and Danewerk. At the region’s heart lies the City of Neumünster with its rich art and cultural offerings, but also retreats such as the large Einfeld Lake. Further south, the route passes through the Holsteiner Auenland towards Bad Segeberg with its unique limestone cave and extensive forest. Here and in Mittelholstein there are old manor houses with estates to discover. Side by side with the “Hochseepötten”, the long-distance cycle route leads along the Kiel Canal from Kiel to Brunsbüttel. In the “Wilstermarsch” between the Elbe and Stör rivers is the lowest walkable place in Germany, and if you continue cycling towards Hamburg, you will cross the special cultural landscape of the “Pinneberger Baumschulland” with its numerous farm cafés and regional delicacies. The inland also offers many mini cycling regions with varied daily routes.

Radfahrer am Nord-Ostsee-Kanal
© sh-tourismus.de

Special tours

In the middle of Mittelholstein, cycling enthusiasts can look forward to a special canal tour. The starting point is the canal town of Rendsburg: Cross the Kiel Canal with Germany’s unique floating ferry (from summer 2021) under the elevated railway bridge and experience the world’s busiest artificial shipping lane from the water. Side by side with freighters and container ships, Brauer’s Aalkate one of the last canal fishermen. Next stop is Himbeerhof Steinwehr, before the route starts in Sehestedt with the ferry to the north side of the canal. After this free mini-cruise, the tour always leads along the canal. Back in Rendsburg, you can experience the historic old town with street cafés, theatre and culture. Thanks to the “blue line”, which guides you from sight to sight along 3.2 kilometres, you won’t miss a thing.

Naturpark Schlei
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Insider tips

Cycling through nature in all its splendour, that’s possible with the Nature Park Trail 160 kilometres of cycling pleasure. The tour connects four nature parks and is also a hiking trail. The starting point is in the Schlei Nature Park with its steep edges and typical landscapes. The tour continues to the Naturpark Hüttener Berge Here, the ice age shaped the landscape and conditioned a lively relief with small stones in the meadows and fields, which are home to a diverse flora and fauna. Along the Kiel Canal, the route takes a canal ferry to the Westensee Nature Park. It is not only the fields and forests that invite you to take a break, but also the bathing area, the cakes and tarts in the cafés and the animals in the Arche Warder Zoo. At Aukrug Nature Park the forests are best appreciated from a view from the “Boxberg”, followed by a warm waffle in the  Ole Hus zu genießen.

Reetdachhäuser am Ufer der Schlei
© Beate Zoellner

Fun Facts

Anyone familiar with the popular early evening series “Der Landarzt” (“The Country Doctor”)? On the near 40-kilometre cycle tour called “Landarzttörn” through the idyllic landscape around the Schlei, memories come flooding back. The Landarzttörn passes through the area around Kappeln, which served as the filming location in the series with the fictitious place name “Deekelsen”. The former country doctor’s house is now a café and offers culinary refreshment on the tour.

Paar beim Radfahren entlang der Alten Salzstraße
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Duchy of Lauenburg and Stormarn

Be it leisurely, sporty and ambitious or for the whole family: The Duchy of Lauenburg has the right offer for every cycling project: 1,000 kilometres of signposted cycle paths, four long-distance cycle routes and 13 themed circular tours transform this lovely rural area between the Elbe and the Baltic Sea into a real cycling paradise! In the varied landscape with its 40+ sparkling lakes and the most densely wooded region of Schleswig-Holstein, travellers cycle through romantic villages, watery towns and along shady avenues. For example, the “Alte Salzstraße” (“Old Salt Road”) connects the two Hanseatic cities of Lüneburg and Lübeck. This 116-kilometre-long trade route was used in the Middle Ages to transport the valuable spice along sandy paths. Today, cyclists can discover the historic route. Along some of the themed routes, such as the avenue or monument tour, there is a “smartphone guide” and exciting information at the adventure stations. The Cycling map Duchy of Lauenburg inspires all who visit with 20 cycling tour tips in the region.

© sh-tourismus.de/MOCANOX

Special tours

With the Farm Tour , you can discover the Duchy of Lauenburg: On a route spanning approx. 41 kilometres, cycling fans experience a beautiful landscape and in large areas away from road traffic. Exciting information on modern agriculture is available on top. At various stations along the cycle path, information boards explain all kinds of interesting facts about the different places to explore.

The tour takes visitors via the bison enclosure in Fredeburg, Schmilau, Althorst, Neuhorst, Sterley, Seedorf, Salem, Farchauer Mühle and back to the starting point.


Paar auf dem Steg am Ratzeburger See
© sh-tourismus.de/MOCANOX

Insider tip

Cycling experiences between forest and water can be enjoyed with particular intensity when the leaves turn into a colourful display of colours and everything appears golden. It is the time of autumn and there is a wonderful spectacle to behold around Schleswig-Holstein’s oldest nature park on the Lauenburg Lakes. Numerous lake views and picturesque vistas are offered by the 48-kilometre-long lake bike tour. The starting and finishing point of the circular tour is the Island town of Ratzeburg, which alone is surrounded by four lakes.

Zwei Frauen sitzen am Fluss
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Fun Facts

Attention! Sleuths are in demand at the Thriller Trail on the BahnRadWeg B. This special outdoor experience combines cycling and mystery fun. The task is to determine: An old postal train robbery case from the 60s has to be solved. Of course, the best way to do this is by bike along the former state railway line in Stormarn.

Insider tip in “Holsteinische Schweiz”

Those who like to cycle longer can choose the near-44 kilometre long Field and Forest Tour through the Nature Park, past one of the oldest watermills still in operation in northern Germany, the “Hasselburger Wassermühle”.