Emlichheim — The Recognized Biking Paradise Of Lower Saxony

Lucky enough to have been bicycling around Lower Saxony? Not yet? No time like the present, and no place better to do it than in Emlichheim where you’ll find signs in both High and Low German.

Talk about bike friendly, and they even got an official badge. There are a huge number of bike trails through the countryside, and thanks to the relatively flat terrain, it’s quite easy.

Don’t hand me that excuse that you’re too old, it’s been years since you’ve been on a bike — blah, blah, blah.

It’s true, you don’t really ever forget how. And if you don’t, you’ll miss out on the Grafschafter Fietsentour routes that lead all around the German and Dutch countrysides.

These are some scenic routes of sorts, ranging in length from a mere 25km to a whopping 600km. The numbers 11, 12, 13, and 25 wind their way through Emlichheim and its environs, depending on what you want to see.

One route goes along the way of the Vechte River, a quiet and peaceful area with a meandering river and tall trees. But, between you and me, when the leaves change colors in the Fall is the absolute best time to do this 43km Emmelkamp Route.

One of the most fun routes is the 600km Pionierroute that goes through the Emsland, right into the Netherlands following the footsteps of the long-gone smugglers who used to run their goods this way.

I know, these routes might seem like a daunting task. Relax, from April to October (weekends only) there’s the Fietsbus. Hundreds of buses come along to bring you a town or two over, or back to where you started.

Throughout the many bike routes surrounding Emlichheim are quaint guesthouses, charming cottages, and well-appointed apartments.

Non-biking folks, there’s something to be found in Emlichheim for you too. The Kunstwege are some 30 sculptures of art created by a variety of artists over the course of two decades — making some older than others. Nice, either way. ;-)

Emlichheim even has a Geschichtspfad, or Historical Trail. You know you’re on the right one when you see the brownish/red steels with historical info of the area. Just so you know, there are 12 of them.

I can tell you about one historical site, the Reformierte Kirche — the Reformed Church that was built in 1150. Yeah, that’s historical I’d say.

It’s easy to forget about the bikes, walks, and history when you’re caught up having a good time. Which is easily done at the Sch├╝tzenfest, the Maypole festivities, the Summer Festival (2nd weekend of July), the Barn Festival (1st weekend of September), the Fall Festival a week later, and the Loarscher Markt on the third Saturday in August.

I was a bit out of order here. Very un-German of me. But that’s not something you’ll ever say of Emlichheim. ;-)

 

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