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Lake Constance | Guided Bike tour | Germany, Switzerland, Austria | - 7 Days

Guided Cycle tours
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Price/person:
from 2195 € per person

Higlights & Hinterland

While passing through Austria, Switzerland, and Germany, you will enjoy the best that this region has to offer, replete with history, nature, wildlife, and great cycling. On this guided bike tour in the very popular Lake Constance region, you will cycle off the beaten path, away from the crowds, into the hinterland, experiencing a different side of Lake Constance. You will be accommodated in the best hotels the lake has to offer.

This is a world of forest paths, blooming orchards, wonderful vineyards. and quaint villages and hamlets. Located in the foothills of the Alps, this ancient cultural land is not only a feast for the eyes, but is also rich in architectural and historical treasures. It is an atmosphere that has inspired artists and poets throughout the ages and seems untouched by the passing of time.

 


Highlights

  • Natural and low- traffic bike routes on quiet forest and meadow paths
  • Lovely boutique accommodations
  • Historic seaside towns of Überlingen, Meersburg, Lindau, and Constance
  • World cultural heritage St. Gallen and Reichenau Island
  • Bioreserve of the Rhine delta
  • Bregenzer Ache

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Itinerary 

  • Day 1: Arrival in Überlingen
  • Day 2: Rokoko and Prälatenweg, 22 mi. (35 km)
  • Day 3: Morning transfer to Markdorf | Markdorf - Lindau, 32 mi. (51 km)
  • Day 4: Lindau - St. Gallen, 20 mi. (32 km)
  • Day 5: St. Gallen monastery district - Gottlieben, 23 or 28 mi. (37- 44 km)
  • Day 6: Reichenau - Stein am Rhein, 22 mi. (36 km)
  • Day 7: Stein am Rhein - Überlingen, 14 mi. (22 km)

 

Day 1: Arrival in Überlingen
Your room will be available for check-in from 3 p.m. at the Parkhotel St. Leonhard, situated high above Überlingen. Please try to arrive no later than 3:45 pm. From the terraces and many rooms of this comfortable, first-class hotel you can look far out over Lake Constance, which seems to stretch endlessly to the east and west. In the next few days you will not only cycle around this huge lake landscape, but you will also learn about the culture and history.

At 4:00 p.m., your tour guide will greet you in the hotel lobby. You will then immediatley be driven to the city center of Überlingen to enjoy a guided tour of the old imperial city.

The contours of this medieval city, which flourished in the 15th and 16th centuries, can be clearly seen even today. Mighty gates and walls, carved out of the surrounding rock, have been preserved to this day. The soft rock of the hills around Überlingen allowed the city's builders this unique construction. The core of the old town is grouped picturesquely around the “Hofstatt” square with the town hall and many Gothic stair gables. The Gothic cathedral of St. Nicholas is also nearby. Not only is it imposing on the outside, but it also holds something valuable on the inside, including the works of art by the woodcarver Jörg Zürn. He created the sacrament house and the grand high altar.

Dinner and overnight at the Parkhotel St. Leonhard. This is an exquisite, modern hotel in a scenic position above Überlingen with a wide view of the lake. The hotel features an indoor swimming pool and is an ideal hotel for an extension of your stay before or after the trip. In fine weather, dinner is served on the hotel terrace with a wonderful view of the city.

Day 2: Rokoko and Prälatenweg, 22 mi. (35 km)
After breakfast, the bikes will already be lined up next to the hotel and are ready for departure. The bike route begins with an easy descent and then is slightly undulating leading off the public roadways to follow forest and meadow paths with wonderful views of the lake. Between Meersburg and Überlingen, you will make a stop at Birnau, the Rococo church that could be a symbol of the entire Lake Constance landscape. It is one of the most visited treasures. In front of the church, there is a balustrade from which you can enjoy a magnificent and sweeping view of the lake. Meersburg, surrounded by steep vineyards, is one of the most romantic medieval towns on the entire lake. Quaint alleys, lined with beautiful old houses, lead up to the castle that still dominates the town today. Aritist of all types have always been drawn to this lovely area. Annette von Droste-Hülshof, a poet from the Münsterland region, once lived here in Meersburg.

After an individual tour and lunch break, the bikes are ready and waiting to continue to Salem, the former Cistercian monastery. The route leads through field, forest, and meadow paths showcasing an untouched landscape. As you pedal, you will see the small glacial hills, or “drumlins” molded during the ice age. This section of the cycle path is part of the “prelate path”. On it the monks and priests moved from Salem Monastery to Birnau to hold mass there. The venerable walls of Salem's monastery complex, which now houses a renowned and internationally known boarding school, rise up suddenly. Here you can participate in a short tour (approx. 1 hour) or take a coffee break. You will then be transferred back to Überlingen (10 km). Dinner and 2nd night in the Parkhotel St. Leonhard **** / Überlingen.

Day 3: Morning transfer to Markdorf | Markdorf - Lindau, 32 mi. (51 km )
After a morning transfer of 22 km, you start cycling in the small town of Markdorf. For the route to Lindau, you will cycle on a little-known route through small villages and into the farmlands and forests. Eventually, the landscape descends to Lake Constance and Wasserburg, which literally translated, means castle in the water. The historic peninsula of Wasserburg, with the onion dome of the baroque church St. George, rises from the landscape and is an iconic landmark of the region.

Cycling onward from Wasserburg to Lindau, you will enjoy a traffic-free route to the gates of your hotel at Lindau harbor. The port entrance with lighthouse and lions is one of the postcard motifs of Lake Constance. Tonight is your free time to explore, stroll on the harbor promenade, enjoy the alpine views, and dine where you wish. Overnight at the Lindauer Hof **** / Lindau. This hotel is situated in a picturesque location on the island of Lindau with a view of the famous Lindaus harbor entrance. It is family-run, comfortable, and rated 4-star. The ideal location seduces you into an evening stroll along the waterfront. The beautiful conservatory restaurant with a view of the lake invites you to stop and enjoy a perfect place for your personal dining.

Day 4: Lindau - St. Gallen, 20 mi. (32 km)
The medieval city of Lindau merits a closer look before you set off for your cycling day. On a guided tour you get a good overview of history and architecture. There are alleys and streets lined with arches, a magnificently painted town hall crowned with stepped gables, and wonderfully decorated churches. The port of Lindau is the most important in Bavaria and its entrance is flanked by a lighthouse and a huge stone lion. The bike path from Lindau to Bregenz takes you across the German-Austrian border. You bike the winding paths near the shore, to the natural idyll of the Bregenzer Ache, and finally to the biodiverse nature reserve near Rohrspitz, surrounded by two arms of the Rhine. Not only a haven for migratory birds, it is also rich in flora and fauna, and is an intensely beautiful wilderness. In May the nightingale sings and the cuckoo calls.

After you have passed the Swiss customs station, you reach the town of Rheineck. St. Gallen, located in the four-country corner of Switzerland, Germany, Austria, and the Principality of Liechtenstein. Because it is located on a hill, you can opt for a short train ride (or for smaller groups, bus transfer) to the top. It is then a 10-minute walk (650 m) from the train station in St. Gallen to your modern and very comfortable hotel, located close to the old town. Dinner and overnight at Hotel Einstein **** / St. Gallen. Four-star hotel with very comfortable furnishings behind a classical facade. It is ideally located for an evening stroll through the nearby old town and the venerable district of St. Gallen Cathedral and its monastery district.

Day 5: St. Gallen monastery district - Gottlieben, 23 or 28 mi. (37 or 44 km)
From the Middle Ages to the present day, St. Gallen has been an affluent city. The huge, centuries-old monastery with its cathedral and the world-famous abbey library (UNESCO World Heritage Site) are the heart of the old town. Here you will participate in a guided tour led by a knowledgeable expert with eloquence and inexhaustible expertise. Here too you can admire the works by Anton Feuchtmayer!

At the end of the city tour, your guide will take you on foot to a hillside residential and university district on the outskirts of Gallen where the bikes will be waiting. An undulating route leads down to the lakeshore, on which you cycle more downhill than uphill. In between, the tour guides offer a transfer for a 7.5 km particularly hilly section, but if you prefer and want a challenge, you can cycle the distance. You approach the lakeside on agricultural paths and small streets. Gottlieben, your overnight destination, is a tiny picturesque village which lies on the Seerhein, the short waterway between Lake Constance and Untersee. It is characterized by beautiful half-timbered houses from the 17th century. The castle of the Bishop of Constance is a highlight. Your hotel is a historic and lovingly restored 300-year-old building.

Dinner in the hotel restaurant and overnight stay in Hotel Die Krone *** / Gottlieben. This historic half-timbered house is picturesquely situated on the banks of the Seerhein / Lake Constance in idyllic-romantic Gottlieben. This accommodation is one of the most romantic places on the banks of the Rhine and the lake. The restaurant terrace overlooks the Wollmatinger Ried nature reserve and the Island of Reichenau. On mild summer nights you can experience unforgettable sunsets here. Due to the historical floor plan, each room is unique. Some rooms are quite small, but the ambiance, fantastic location, and great cuisine make up for it! Equivalent historical hotels (3-star) on the lakeshore in Gottlieben are the Hotel Drachenburg and the Hotel Hecht.

Day 6: Reichenau - Stein am Rhein, 23 mi. (36 km)
Today you will get to know another Lake Constance Island, Reichenau, which you will reach by boat. Reichenau is famous for the fine vegetables that grow here and for several of the most venerable Romanesque churches in Germany. The German abbot Walahfrid once lived in the monastery of Reichenau. He was not only an important theologian and excellent scholar but also a gifted gardener. He created the famous herb garden that can still be visited today. Once again by boat, you travel from Reichenau over to the north bank of the Untersee to Allensbach, a village whose name has become world-famous due to its well-known opinion research institute. From Allensbach the cycle path leads up into the woods above the lake, and later downhill back to the shore and on to Stein am Rhein on the Swiss side. Stein am Rhein is a truly "picturesque" town. Its charming half-timbered houses are like a picture postcard with facades lavishly painted with frescoes. For the return trip from Stein am Rhein you will travel by train (for smaller groups by bus). Closing dinner in the hotel restaurant and 2nd night in the Hotel Die Krone / Gottlieben

Day 7: Stein am Rhein - Überlingen, 13 mi. (22 km)
Your tour around the lake ends with today's bike route. You climb on the bike in front of the hotel and cycle along the lake to get back to Constance. A beautiful bike path crosses the council city. From 1414 to 1418 the famous Council took place here, which was one of the most important of the Middle Ages. After a city tour, you cycle through elegant residential areas from Constance to the south bank of Lake Überlingen. You follow a quiet and picturesque bike path that leads you to the town of Wallhausen, and from the small port, take a ferry to Überlingen. In 2020, the ferry is scheduled to arrive every day at 1:42 pm so you can plan your onward travel accordingly. A transfer will be provided to return guests to the Parkhotel St. Leonhard or you can request to be transferred to the train station.

 

 

What’s Included

  • Accommodations for 6 nights in a double room with breakfast in lovely boutique hotels
  • 5 multi-course dinners in the hotel or selected restaurants
  • Rental bike with 8-speed backpedal or 24-speed freewheel chain/hub gear. Please specify preference.
  • Support bus & luggage transfer
  • Fully guided cycling itinerary
  • English speaking guide
  • Guided tours with local guides & admission to Überlingen, Salem, Lindau, St. Gallen, & Constance
  • Detailed travel information
  • All transfers by bus, train, & boat according to the program
  • One ferry service from Wallhausen to Überlingen (you will recieve voucher)
  • Mineral water during cycling itinerary
  • CO2 compensation in the region

What’s Not Included

  • All beverages other than those offered at breakfast
  • Meal other than those mentioned
  • Service for picnic buffets & drink breaks (payable locally)
  • Helmet (due to Covid hygiene protocols, you must bring your own helmet)
  • Ferry & train fares not mentioned as included (self-guided)
  • Gratuities (guided)
  • Bike protection
  • Travel Insurance

 

ACCOMMODATIONS - LAKE CONSTANCE - GUIDED

Details
  • Price per Person in a Double room
    2195 €
  • Price per Person in a Single room
    2580 €

added options / discounts

  • Ebike (Pedelec)
    175 €
  • Rental helmet
    10 €
  • Additional night in Überlingen - Parkhotel St. Leonhard****
    120 €
  • Additional night in Überlingen - Parkhotel St. Leonhard****
    150 €
  • Transfer from Zürich airport to Parkhotel St. Leonhard in Überlingen:
    250 €
  • Transfer from Zürich airport to Parkhotel St. Leonhard in Überlingen:
    375 €

ACCOMMODATIONS - LAKE CONSTANCE - GUIDED

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Our standard when choosing a hotel is high. Our partner-hotels should not only be functionally perfect, but above all offer a pleasant and regional atmosphere. Only now and then does the route force a compromise. We don't accept a cheaper hotel just to get what appears to be a cheap tour price. terranova always mentions the hotel names. You are welcome to check our rating in Michelin or on tripadvisor.

  • Überlingen: Parkhotel St. Leonhard****
    Exquisite, modern hotel in a panoramic location above Überlingen with a wide view of the lake. All rooms with bath / toilet, mostly balcony. Indoor swimming pool. Quiet location. Ideal for a follow-up stay before or after the trip. You can park your car in the spacious parking lot during your trip. When the weather is nice, you can have breakfast on the hotel's terrace or have lunch or dinner served there with a wonderful view of the city and Lake Constance. 1 night with breakfast.
  • Salem / Markdorf: Gasthof Schwanen***
    The Gasthof Schwanen is the simplest hotel on our Lake Constance trip. However, its location on the Schlossgelän-de Salem is unique! Home-style cooking with a romantic beer garden. 1 night with breakfast.
  • Lindau: Lindauer Hof****
    One of the best addresses on the island of Lindau. It is particularly picturesquely situated on the harbor with a view of the famous view from Lindau's harbor entrance. A family-run, comfortable 4-star hotel with friendly service. The ideal location tempts you to take an evening stroll along the promenade. The beautiful winter garden restaurant with a view of the lake invites you to stop. 1 night with breakfast.
  • St. Gallen: Einstein-Hotel****
    Four-star hotel with very comfortable furnishings behind a classical facade. It is ideally located for an evening stroll through the nearby old town and the venerable district of St. Gallen Cathedral and its monastery district. 1 night with breakfast.
  • Gottlieben: Hotel Porto Sofie***
    The historic, listed half-timbered house is picturesquely situated on the banks of the Seerhein / Bodensee in the idyllic and romantic Gottlieben. Living here is an exclusive pleasure, because in summer this house is often booked out well in advance for weddings and anniversaries. The hotel only reopened in April 2021 after a renovation. The historical character of the house was retained. All 31 rooms are lovingly and individually furnished.

    A comfort restriction arises due to its different room sizes, which are due to the historical floor plan. Some rooms are quite small. But the very atmospheric ambience in a fantastic location makes up for it. 2 nights with dinner.

    An equivalent historical hotel (3-star) directly on the lakeshore in Gottlieben is the neighboring hotel "Drachenburg", which we use when the "Porto Sofie" is fully booked.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • SKILL LEVEL:
    EASY–MODERATE: Rating a bike tour is one of the hardest things we do. What you find difficult or easy depends on your own personal physical condition and training. The itinerary leads through a gently rolling landscape on forest and meadow paths. The total distance is approx. 213-220 km. On some days, you will enjoy a very flat route and on other days, the itinerary leads through rolling hills with great panoramic views and wonderful landscapes. To cycle through the picturesque idyll of the hinterland, you do need a little extra effort on a few days. If you are concerned and don’t want to worry about your own fitness and ability, we recommend an electric bike.
     
  • AIRPORT INFO
    The closest and largest international airport to your tour start and end is Zurich International Airport (ZRH), located 58 km from Überlingen.
     
  • LOCAL TRAVEL
    Zurich Airport railway station is a railway station is located underneath the main ground-side passenger terminal of the airport. Here you can access a train to Überlingen. Please note that train travel, though not lengthy, will entail a transfer in Schaffhausen. The train station in Überlingen is still one mile from your hotel so you will need to take a taxi. Train travel time is approx. 2 1/2 hours. Train travel costs vary but will be between €60 - €110 per person. If you prefer a private transfer from the airport to your first hotel, this can be arranged. Please see pricing.
     
  • RENTAL BIKES
    Touring Bike: The rental bikes are comfortable 28” trekking bike, equipped with Shimano eight-speed gearbox or a new 24-speed chain/gear hub with freewheel. You can choose between a male model (with top-tube) and a unisex model with low-step frame. Both are available in different frame sizes. The handlebars are ergonomically shaped. All bikes are equipped with a rack (rear wheel) and ideal for multi-day trips with bike panniers.

    Electric Bike: In addition to touring bikes, e-bikes (pedelecs) are also offered from the brands EBIKE / Velo de Ville / Kreidler. These are all equipped with a powerful battery and have a BOSCH or SHIMANO mid-engine, which will give you a pleasant tailwind on your bike tour.
  • CLIMATE
    The climate in the Lake Constance region is very mild with warm summers and moderate winters and can therefore almost be described as Mediterranean and owes it fame in fruit and wine growing to the warm and sunny climate. In spring, millions of fruit trees and spring flowers bloom covering the meadows in the rural area. The summer and autumn are particularly attractive due to the lush cherry and apple trees and the full grapevines. From April to October, the weather is ideal for cycling and discovering the beauties of this region. Please do check the local conditions before your arrival.
     
  • REMARKS
    This unique itinerary utilizes cycling routes that explore the still, quiet, and picturesque hinterland on the German and Swiss side of the lake, allowing you to avoid the crowd of cyclists directly on the lakeshore. The routes are planned with meticulous precision to avoid the tourist hotspots and the traffic that threatens to dispel the magic of the landscape. You will not utilize the “official” cycle paths on busier roads, but use forest and meadow paths. You will cycle the official Lake Constance Cycle Path along the bank on the Austrian side of the lake on Day 4 because here the Alps reach almost directly to the lake and it is not possible to switch to the hinterland. However, this stage is very beautiful as it leads through the nature reserve of the Rhine Delta.

  • IMPORTANT TO KNOW
    Due to the changing requirements for entry, it is imperative that you stay up to date on requirements set by the country/countries that you are visiting. Please visit our Travel Restrictions Tool page and the country/countries government webpage for this information.

  • Documents:
    Before you travel, please check the passport and visa requirements of the country/countries you plan to visit. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have proper identification. For US citizens, the U.S. Passports & International Travel website is a good source of information. The Country Information tab provides details about passport validity, blank passport pages required, etc. It is important to research before you travel as airlines will not permit boarding if you do not have the required valid documents.

    We recommend that you make copies of your important documents and papers (insurance cards, etc.). Leave a copy at home and have a copy with you. In the unfortunate situation that you lose your original documents, having copies facilitates the replacement process.

    *Important note: Please check on the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) status as once implemented, this will be required to visit any of the 26 Schengen-member countries for tourism, business, medical, or transit. This is an additional check on security rather than a visa.

    Insurance: Before traveling, we strongly recommend you review your personal insurance and health insurance to ensure you have coverage appropriate to meet your needs, and the needs of your family and dependants, in case of any loss of property or illness, injury, or death.