Cycle and boat trip: Münster – Cologne
From the biker‘s paradise Münsterland to the Rhine Cycle Route to Cologne. In between castles, nature and industrial culture
8 days | individual cycle tours
From the biker‘s paradise Münsterland to the Rhine Cycle Route to Cologne. In between castles, nature and industrial culture Cycle and boat trip: Münster – Cologne 8 days | individual cycle tours
Highlights of this bike and boat trip
- Historic “city of peace” Münster
- Nordkirchen Castle, the „Westphalian Versailles”
- Nature reserve Lippeauen on the Roman-Lippe cycle route
- UNESCO World Heritage Zollverein Coal Mine
- Lake Baldeney and Ruhr Valley Cycle Route
- Niederbergbahn panorama bike path
- Angertal nature reserve
- Museums and pub culture in the old town of Düsseldorf
- Zollfeste Zons on the Rhine
- Roman city of Cologne with the Cologne Cathedral (UNESCO World Heritage Site)
This bike tour combines the highlights of several very different routes. From the park landscape of the idyllic Münsterland region with its moated castles and palaces to a somewhat different culture in the Rhine-Ruhr region, which has undergone major changes in recent decades. Winding towers are now monuments to industrial culture, old colliery sites have become parks and cultural centers - all nestled in a surprisingly wide and green landscape in which the industrial relics develop a romantic charm. On the cycle routes you will experience the beauty of castles and historic architecture, creative towns and idyllic nature areas. In many cases, the route leads along a river or canal, on the banks of which numerous caf.s, beer gardens or picnic areas with a view invite you to take a break. In Münster, Düsseldorf and Cologne you will also discover three of the most beautiful old towns in North Rhine-Westphalia. Your floating hotel, the cozy 24-passenger ship MS Quo Vadis, will accompany you and provide you with a comfortable stay on board at the end of each cycle route.
The routes are easy to ride and have low gradients. They follow Westphalian p.ttkes (quiet asphalt farm roads and hardsanded bike paths through nature), river bike paths, railroad tracks and well-signposted regional quality bike routes with good infrastructure. Only short stretches lead through urban areas. Day 6 is a bit more strenuous with some elevation gain north of Düsseldorf.
Ship Quo Vadis
Münster – Cologne
Day 1 (Sat): approx. 16:00 Embarkation in the Historic “city of peace” Münster
Embarkation in the city harbor at the Kreativkai in the center of Münster. In the afternoon you will still have time to stroll around the Prinzipalmarkt in the historic old town of Münster, visit the Friedenssaal or have a coffee with an unobstructed view of the impressive cathedral. At 6 pm is Reception on board with sparkling wine followed by dinner at 6.30 pm.
Day 2 (Sun): Münster – Lüdinghausen – Datteln Bike tour 61 km / 176 m uphill or 48 km / 152 m uphill.
Rivers and castles in Münsterland. Along the beautiful river bank you cycle along the Werseradweg through the green park landscape of the Münsterland until you follow the 100 castles route from Albersloh. After the manor houses Haus Bisping and Haus Borg you can admire the Westphalian Versailles, Schloss Nordkirchen, in the middle of a large baroque park. Along the banks of the Stever River, you will cycle into Lüdinghausen. There you are going to reach Vischering Castle. Circumnavigate the stunning Gr.ftenring and nearby Lüdinghausen Castle before re-entering the ship in order to travel via the Dortmund-Ems Canal to Datteln.
Day 3 (Mon): Datteln – Lünen – Werne – Hamm. Bike tour 45–59 km / 190–227 m uphill
Between the Ruhr region and Münsterland. Along the Lippe River, the route leads to Lünen and the listed Victoria coal mine settlement. After a few kilometers through nature and forest, Cappenberg Castle appears. About halfway along the way, the historic old town of Werne invites to a stop at the market square with a view on the old town hall. On the R.mer-Lippe route, you then cycle surrounded by waterways. A dam leads in between the Lippe and the Datteln-Hamm Canal to Maximilianpark in Hamm, the fi rst renaturalized coal mine site in Germany. Here, a special adventure park has been created: with lakes, art, a butterfl y house, the 40m high glass elephant and relics of the mining era. Alternatively, to Oberwerries Castle in the Lippe meadows north of Hamm. At the end of the day, you will go back from Hamm to Datteln by ship.
Day 4 (Tue): Datteln – Gelsenkirchen. Bike tour 44 km / 210 m uphill (shorter route 35 km possible). Route Industrial Culture
Today is all about to industrial culture. The old ship lift is the first spectacular structure you can visit. It was not until its completion in 1899 that the Dortmund-Ems Canal could be navigated all the way to Dortmund Harbor. From the ship lift, you will continue along the Industrial Culture Route to the heath and forest landscape of the Resser Mark. Th e Rhine-Herne Canal, the former Henrichenburg, Bladenhorst Castle, the Museum “Strom und Leben” and the former Recklinghausen II Colliery including its historic winding tower are on your route. Th e ship will be waiting for you in Gelsenkirchen harbor. Th e longer route includes a detour to Herten Castle and the idyllic old village of Westerholt. Here you can have another drink in the castle garden or on the village square surrounded by half-timbered houses before cycling to the city port of Gelsenkirchen.
Day 5 (Wed): Gelsenkirchen – Mülheim an der Ruhr. Bicycle tour 49 km / 240 m uphill. From the Zollverein Coal Mine to the Ruhr Cycle Path
You cycle along the Rhine-Herne Canal on the 7-bridge cycle path to the Zollverein Coal Mine Industrial Complex (UNESCO World Heritage Site). A walk across the grounds off ers ever new vantage points of the imposing steel and brick facilities in Bauhaus architecture. Th e RuhrMuseum and the Red Dot Design Museum with 2000 exhibits are located on the grounds. After the many impressions, the cycle path then leads you to the banks of the Ruhr and to Lake Baldeney, the largest of the 6 Ruhr reservoirs. Villa Hügel, the home of the Krupp family of industrialists, is worth a short detour. From here you follow the RuhrtalRadweg to Mülheim an der Ruhr. Alternatively (shorter route) from Stoppenberg via the Ruhr cycle path to Mülheim. Around the city harbor there is much to discover: among others, the Aquarius Water Museum, Styrum Castle Park and the MüGa State Garden Show Park.
Day 6 (Thu): Mülheim/Ruhr – Düsseldorf. Bike tour 50 km / 348 m uphill (fl atter route possible). Cycling along the river: Ruhr, Anger and Rhine.
Via the Ruhr cycle path and along the Ruhr fl oodplains, you will first reach the Kettwiger reservoir. Cycle a bit on the Niederbergbahn panoramic bike path, an old railroad track that climbs a bit in parts, but also rewards you with very beautiful views. Along the Anger River, floodplain forests alternate with green meadows. Haus Anger and Gr.fgenstein Castle, visible from afar, still bear witness to the age of knights. During a break in the beer garden of the Auermühle, you can relax and recharge for the remaining last kilometers. For those interested, the Cromford Textile Factory Museum, located in an old English landscape park, off ers insights into cotton spinning 200 years ago. Cycle through the green countryside past Kalkum Castle to the banks of the Rhine and after a few kilometers on the Rhine Cycle Path reach the Quo Vadis landing stage in Düsseldorf. End the evening on the Rhine promenade and soak up the atmosphere of the special pub culture of the Rhenish metropolis.
Day 7 (Fri): Düsseldorf – Rhine Cycle Route – Cologne
Bike tour 48 km / 159 m uphill
Through the Rhine meadows to the Roman city of Cologne. Along the Rhine, the route fi rst leads to Benrath Palace, one of the most beautiful late Baroque garden palaces in Europe. After this ornate complex, the path through the floodplain landscape of the Urdenbacher K.mpe with pollarded willows and hundreds of apple and pear trees is an enchanting contrast. You change the banks of the Rhine and the customs fortress of Zons with its mill and city wall transports you unawares to the Middle Ages. After a leisurely stretch through the green meadows of the Rhine, the backdrop becomes industrial once again in view of the Ford factories on your right. The Rhine on your left leads you directly to the old Roman city of Cologne, where the Quo Vadis awaits you in the central Rheinauhafen.
Day 8 (Sat): After breakfast end of the trip.
- Bicycle and boat vacation 8 days, 7 nights
- Full board (7 x breakfast, 6 x lunch/lunch pack, 5 x three-course dinners, 1 x four-course dinner)
- Welcome drink and information talk on the first evening
- Accommodation in the booked cabin category with shower and WC
- Bedding and bed linen, (on request daily fresh towels)
- Daily cabin cleaning
- Daily program briefings by the crew
- Maps and route descriptions for cycling tours (1x per cabin), tourist information
- GPS tracks
- Use of a waterproof pannier bag
- Travel to/from the ship‘s berth
- bike or e-bike rental
- personal insurance
- tips (at own discretion)
- 1 dinner on board
- entrance fees
- parking fees.
Note: 1 x no dinner on board, but at your own expense in Mülheim an der Ruhr. Restaurants are located near the pier in the city harbor of Mülheim.
Preview Travel dates 2023: 12 weeks
03 June to 26 August 2023