For this new tour, we did a lot of desk-research, asked friends who had been on this path before. I asked Kristin, a tourguide and tourdesigner for many years, to join me and help developing a great new BikePlanet Tour!
We had 5 days to do so… So we skipped the days we are offering in the Netherlands and headed for one of the highlights of this tour: the Rails to Trail Vennbahn Radweg.
Last Sunday we drove by car, packed with panniers and carrying 2 of the BikePlanet bikes to the South of the Netherlands, the province called Limburg. Our first goal was to find a great place to start our new tour. A home for 3 nights, somewhere between Maastricht in the Netherlands and Aachen in Germany. Did we find one? Oh yes we did! Totally great, so we started off the next day after an excellent breakfast on the terrasse and drove to Aachen (by car). Parked it and got ready to start biking on the Vennbahn Radweg.
This is one of Europe’s longest Rails to Trail tracks, almost totally paved and designed for biking! Chosen the best Bikepath in 2014 by the best population of bikers on the Planet: the Dutch ;-).
On the “rails”
First goal was getting into the hills, going up and up in a very smooth way, like the old steamlocs that ones where taking it at easy as possible to climb up in this undulating hilly area. It went rather well, although the last part of the day may be a bit too much for our guests. Needs a bit of condition, on the other hand… I am 60, overweight, not in excellent shape and I had to carry the panniers including the laptop and I could do it.
Temperatures were high, hottest day of the year, so… I guess most of our guests will perfectly master these easy but long uphill. And if not: we can provide E-bikes and we offer Van-support. So no worries there!
Would this be too much for our guests? On the other hand… I am 60, overweight, not in excellent shape and I could do it.
The scenery kept on changing, as it did the next days. We were pleasantly surprised by the high quality of the paved path. Very wide, very safe, as perfect as the Germans like it. In Monschau we had a bit of trouble finding a nice hotel. The village is mostly visited by day-tourists and the local hotels did not meet up with our standards. We found an old beauty with a great restaurant in the city-centre. Probably we will choose that one.
A mesmerizing scenery
After Monschau, we followed a little river up to get back onto our track. Saw families using a local attraction biking on the former rails with special “train”-wagons. We followed the bike-path, bought a nice sandwich at the end of this attraction and continued into Belgium to find ourselves in the middle of the yearly summer-market in St.-Vith. Nice little hotel, lots of shops and a good night sleep was our reward.
The biking out here is so great, it’s meadows and forests and little villages, the views are great and it’s changing as we pass boarders. Now we got on an unpaved path. Some nasty holes but easy to avoid, our guides will certainly guide everybody through there. Still very bikeable, just the bikers on roadbikes would not like this. Our bikes are perfect for this unpaved parts. Great countryside, saw a haze as big as a deer almost, very quiet out here, almost no other bikers.
A very special bikepath
We biked into Luxembourgh, of course the border was on the highest point of the hills and just one sign showed us we did, no passports in Europe anymore… Great!
Maybe it get’s boring to read this… but again: a great day! This is such a perfect bikepath and so long… so safe … no traffic. A few crossings of roads, but totally indicated and almost no traffic anyway. We have seen a lot, but this is by far the longest bikepath we both ever biked.
I am already looking forward to doing this again. No wonder it’s won awards. A great escape from business, deadlines, obligations… I found it hard to do any work on my laptop… too relaxed 😉
A great escape from business, deadlines, obligations
Along the riverside
We stopped at Trois Vierges, end of the Vennbahn Radweg and took a train to get to Clervaux, another lovely touristic village, where we found a grand hotel. The next morning we took the same train and started biking on the Sure Radweg, again partly a Rail to Trail track from Ettelbrueck, along the Sure river to the Moselle river. Easily pedaling along the riverside, looking at the families paddling in the kayaks… It looked like a great idea to offer this as well as an option for our guests!
We stopped at Echternach,which is a surprisingly beautiful village and had lunch on one of the many terrasses. A few more miles and there she was: the Moselle and its great valley. That’s where we stopped and our fun ended…
Back to work to get things ready to put it on the website and get you to book it for 2017!!Back to overview