What is probably the best-known river in Europe, the Rhine, flows tirelessly over a total length of 1,320 kilometres through large parts of Germany, Switzerland, France and the Netherlands. On its journey towards the sea, the Rhine travels over 226 kilometres in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), on the most fascinating section of the Rhine Cycle Route. From the Drachenfels rock in the Siebengebirge hills to Emmerich am Rhein, you can visit historic town centres, experience the metropolitan environments of cities such as Cologne and Düsseldorf, and admire the breathtaking opulence of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the palaces of Augustusburg and Falkenlust.
The NRW section of the Rhine Cycle Route begins in the enchanting Siebengebirge hills, with their gorge-like valleys and densely forested areas, and takes you along the Drachenfels rock and the former German federal capital, Bonn, to the vibrant metropolitan city of Cologne. In Brühl, near Cologne, you can take a break and visit the impressive UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the palaces of Schloss Augustusburg and Schloss Falkenlust. The tops of the spires of Cologne Cathedral point the way to the cathedral city. The route continues to the cultural metropolis of Düsseldorf via the medieval town of Zons. In Düsseldorf, you can experience the many points of artistic and architectural interest. Krefeld on the left bank of the Rhine contains examples of 1920s Bauhaus architecture by Mies van der Rohe. The bustling domestic port city of Duisburg with its industrial culture is also worth a visit, as is the rural idyll of the Lower Rhine or the fascinating architectural monuments all along the route. Shortly before the Dutch border, in Emmerich, there is a wonderful view over the particularly wide stretch of the Rhine and an impressive structure. The Rhine bridge at Emmerich is the longest suspension bridge in Germany, at 803 meters. Vibrant and full of contrast, this popular cycle route runs through the most populous German federal state.
The route can be cycled on both sides of the Rhine, and is signposted.
(Images: © Dominik Ketz, Tourismus NRW e.V.)