The name Lake Constance - also known as the Swabian Sea - stands for two lakes (Upper and Lower Lake) and a section of the Rhine connecting them (Seerhein). Lake Constance is located in the Lake Constance basin, which is part of the northern foothills of the Alps. The Rhine flows through it, the inflow is called Alpenrhein, the outflow Hochrhein. The Lake Constance cycle path is one of the most popular routes in Europe and offers approx. 260 km of well-maintained and signposted cycle paths. Except for a few short stages, it is flat and almost always leads along the lakeshore. With over 2000 hours of sunshine a year and a mild climate all year round, it offers the best conditions for cyclists from April to October.
A cycling tour through different European countries
Lake Constance is one of the most famous lakes in Germany. A cycling tour on Lake Constance leads not only through Germany but also to Switzerland and Austria. Both neighbouring countries are beautiful and there are different landscapes and cultures to admire in each.
Exploring Lake Constance by bike therefore has many advantages. You will not only get to know 3 different countries but also discover a variety of different traditions. Taste the wonderful different wines that are offered around Lake Constance.
The Lake Constance Cycle Path
The approximately 260 kilometre long cycle path circles the entire Lake Constance, which is made up of the Obersee and Untersee lakes. Most of the time you cycle along the lake shore. The Lake Constance cycle path runs for the most part on cycle paths or on quiet side roads, most of which are also asphalted. In between there are a few short sections that you have to spend on the main road. There are very few climbs along the entire route. The Lake Constance Cycle Route is signposted in all three countries with a uniform route logo.
The climate around Lake Constance is very mild with warm summers and temperate winters and is therefore often referred to as Mediterranean. Even in spring it is easy to cycle at Lake Constance. In the period from March to May there are often pleasant average temperatures of 14. 5 degrees Celsius with approx. 5. 5 hours of sunshine and between 10 and 15 rainy days per month.
Summer on Lake Constance is a dream for bike travelers. Temperatures range between a pleasant 25 and 30 degrees and the number of hours of sunshine averages 7. 2 hours per day. However, rain must be expected here too. But the landscape is beautifully green and right on the water with a constant air movement very pleasant even in summer.
The best of Lake Constance
On every trip you can expect comfortable hotels and well-maintained country inns, a variety of restaurants with regionally shaped gastronomy, as well as a wealth of excursion destinations and nature experiences. The glittering lake below the nearby Alps is your constant companion and opens up unforgettable views. You can smell the fresh sea air, the Mediterranean climate makes cycling a pleasure and from time to time a refreshing bath in the lake provides new momentum.
1000 reasons to visit Lake Constance - here are just a few of them:
- SEA LIFE Center Konstanz
- Zeppelin flight over the region (Friedrichshafen)
- Historic Lake Constance boat trips
- Salem Monastery and Castle
- UNESCO World Heritage Site: the pile dwellings of Unteruhldingen
- UNESCO World Heritage Site: the island of Reichenau
- Castles and palaces around the lake (e. g. B. the oldest inhabited castle in Meersburg)
- Seebühne (stage) Bregenz (Festival)
- Rhine Falls - Waterfalls of Schaffhausen
- Gondola ride on the Pfänder (Bregenz)
- Blossom magic on the island of Mainau
- Therme Konstanz
- Meersburg Therme with outdoor pool and panoramic view
- Stroll and relax (beautiful old towns, wonderful lake promenades, many quaint cafés and restaurants)
- Fresh fruit & vegetables from the island of Reichenau
- Outstanding regional wines (e. g. , from the region's wine-growing region). B. Staatsweingut Meersburg)
- Fresh fish from the lake
Constance is the largest city on Lake Constance and belongs to Germany, but is located directly on the border with Switzerland. The historic old town with its picturesque alleys and facades invites you to stroll. The harbour with its southern flair and breathtaking lake and alpine scenery spoils every guest. Places to see in Konstanz:
- Münster “Our Lady”
- Port figure “Imperia”
In addition, Konstanz has a multitude of museums, as well as culture and music. See for yourself.
The university town of Constance is the pulsating centre of the four-country region on Lake Constance. It offers a high quality of life, especially because of its beautiful location on one of the arms of Lake Constance. In addition to a variety of culinary delights from the local gastronomy (from historic wine taverns to recommended gourmet restaurants), there is also a wide range of cultural activities on offer. Especially in summer, when the evenings are warm and the lake shines turquoise in the sun, Constance glows with Mediterranean flair. The proximity to the islands of Mainau and Reichenau - as well as to the landscapes of the Bodanrück with forests, gorges and lakes - offers numerous great excursion possibilities!
Stein am Rhein (CH)
In the medieval Swiss town of Stein am Rhein, Lake Constance becomes the Rhine again, this part is called the Hochrhein. The closed historical old town with its painted facades is excellently preserved and enchants with its charm. The lively town is a very popular destination with sights such as the Benedictine monastery of St. Georgen, the castle Hohenklingen and the archipelago of Werd, a recreational area and of course close to the Rhine Falls of Schaffhausen.
Schaffhausen and the Rhine Falls (CH)
The city of Schaffhausen is located in the northernmost corner of Switzerland and on the border with Germany. Due to the many bay doors and the beautifully painted facades, the traffic-free old town of Schaffhausen is considered one of the most picturesque in Switzerland. Just a few kilometres from Schaffhausen, the Rhine Falls is one of the great attractions of the Lake Constance region. It is located west of the Untersee in Switzerland and impresses with its masses of water. Every visitor to Lake Constance should have marveled at this spectacle and take a boat trip to the rock in the Rhine Falls – it’s worth it! The Rhine Falls, 23 metres high and 150 metres wide, is the largest and most waterfall in Europe
Reeds, mixed forests, natural lakes - nowhere is the Lake Constance landscape more diverse than around Radolfzell. At the same time, the city is proud of the longest walkable stretch of shore on Lake Constance. The gastronomy offers many delicacies on the large squares and in the idyllic narrow streets of the old town and the hustle and bustle of the weekly and evening markets exude a lot of joie de vivre.
Reichenau island (Germany)
A dam with a beautiful avenue of poplars leads to the island, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From 8. In the sixteenth century it developed into the intellectual centre of the Occident. Witnesses of the great past are the three Romanesque churches with their famous murals. Reichenau is the largest of the three Lake Constance islands and from the highest point everything is at your feet: the view sweeps over beautiful churches and greenhouses gleaming in the sun, where fruit and vegetables flourish in abundance.
Mainau Island (Germany)
On the shore of Lake Überlingen you reach the Mainau road after a short cycle route. Here you approach the biggest tourist magnet of the region, the flower island Mainau. Bicycles may not be taken onto the island. There is a separate parking space for this. You can then get across the causeway on foot or by island bus. Please note that you have to pay entrance fee for the island. The island of Mainau is one large park landscape with a wide variety of floral attractions. Close to an orchid show in the Palm House, the scent of hyacinths, daffodils and tulips fills the air. Around one million people visit the island of Mainau in Lake Constance every year. Due to the spectacular microclimate, the warm season of the island produces the special microclimate that allows palm trees, banana trees, orange and lemon trees to grow excellently in the warm season.
Tulips in spring, roses in summer and dahlias in autumn - the plants in the Botanical Garden are magnificent. In addition to these seasonal blossom highlights, Mainau Island has a variety of attractions and nature experiences in store for you. And for your physical well-being island restaurants, cafés and snack bars provide.
After visiting Mainau Island and back on the "mainland", follow the cycle path through a nature reserve always close to Lake Constance. Past Dingelsdorf the path leads to the Marienschlucht. Not much remained of the medieval castle. But don't be discouraged by the unspectacular beginning of the gorge, the last bit is really worth seeing. Afterwards it goes through further smaller places at the Überlinger lake to Bodman and Ludwigshafen.
Bodman is a pleasantly quiet resort on the “west end” of Lake Constance. The village is embedded in a magical hilly landscape and borders a large nature reserve (Aachried). The environment with its contrasting nature, the rare plants and numerous birds is certainly one of the most beautiful areas on Lake Constance. In spring, the lushly blossoming fruit trees transform the slopes into a sea of blossoms, just like everywhere on Lake Constance. Above the Catholic Church of St. Peter and Paul is the new castle of the Counts of Bodman. Built in the style of Biedermeier and surrounded by a beautiful park
A small, idyllic town on Lake Überlinger, on the shores of the northwestern part of Lake Constance, which is also called the “Gartenstadt. ” There is also a lot of greenery to see outside the beautifully landscaped city and spa gardens: On a 4 km long garden culture trail you can explore the most beautiful spots in Überlingen. Also worth seeing are the Stadtgarten with old trees and exotic plants, the Münster – the city’s landmark -, the Reichlin-von-Meldegg-Haus, the oldest Renaissance building in Germany and the town hall. Cafés and restaurants on the beautiful waterfront promenade provide for the physical well-being.
Unteruhldingen and its UNESCO - World Cultural Heritage Site of the Lake Dwellings (D)
Situated between Überlingen and Meersburg, Unteruhldingen is a spectacular excursion destination that you should definitely not miss. In an extensive open-air museum, 23 pile-dwelling houses have been reconstructed in a magnificent location above Lake Constance. In 2011, UNESCO declared this site a World Heritage Site, attracting people from far and wide. The prehistoric buildings can be reached via wooden walkways and the interior makes a long-gone, sunken world come alive again.
Monastery and Castle Salem (Germany)
The excursion leads to one of the most beautiful cultural monuments of the Lake Constance region. Amidst spacious parks and gardens, the former convent and present-day Salem Castle is located. Like hardly any other historical ensemble, Salem has been largely preserved in its authentic state since the time of the monastery: the Gothic cathedral with its exceptional alabaster furnishings in early Classicist style, the magnificent rooms furnished with baroque stucco, the farm buildings and the gardens of the complex take visitors on a journey through centuries of monastic culture.
The most beautiful place on Lake Constance is Meersburg. In a charming hillside location you have a beautiful view of the lake and the Swiss Alps. The main attractions of the small town are the Meersburg Castle, where you can still feel the medieval times and the Neue Schloss, the venue for many open air concerts and events. But also the beautiful old town with its romantic streets and the waterfront promenade are worth a visit. And if you are looking for wellness and relaxation, the bathing worlds of the Meersburg-Therme are just right for you
The second largest town on Lake Constance, the Zeppelin town on the upper lake, offers two highlights at once: the Dornier Museum and the Zeppelin Museum. Here everything revolves around the history of aviation and even today the Zeppelin still makes its weightless rounds over the lake, an exciting excursion experience. A visit to the baroque castle church, the town's landmark, a relaxed stroll along Friedrichshafen's lakeside promenade with its many places to stop for refreshments or a dip in one of the well-kept lidos are further reasons to stay here
Idyllically placed between mountain and lake lies the charming town of Bregenz. The provincial capital of Vorarlberg nestles on the eastern shore of the lake and is, among other things. Starting point to visit the Pfänder, the most famous viewpoint of the region. Simply take the panorama gondola up to the 1,064 m high adventure mountain and enjoy the view of Lake Constance and its 240 Alpine peaks. And of course Bregenz is famous all over the world for its festival, which takes place every year from June to August. Another highlight is the monastery church Mehrerau: here the monastery garden, the library and the nursery attract visitors.
Rorschach is located in the Swiss canton of St. Gallen on the eastern part of Lake Constance. With its more than 1000 years of tradition as a market town, it is still an important railway junction. Beautiful merchant houses bear witness to the importance of the town in the Middle Ages. A recommended visit is the bath hut from 1924. It is a wooden box bath on stilts and is now a historic lake bath. A wonderful place to swim, linger, eat and relax.
The lively Arbon – between Rorschach and Romanshorn – is located at the entrance to the Appenzell Land; a landscape characterized by many old apple-strewn meadows. The must (cider and apple juice) from this area is a local speciality. A beautiful old town with historical buildings and many small specialist shops invites you to stroll around. Spacious parks, a mile-long promenade with boating harbours and much more ensure that the guest does not get bored.
The “city on the water”, in the canton of Thurgau, is located on the Swiss southern shore of Lake Constance and owns the largest port of Lake Constance. A harbour tour and a visit to the historical railway station are also recommended, as well as a visit to the old customs house, which is now a museum. The seaside resort provides additional variety in the inner city. A recommendation: The lake-restaurant Romanshorn offers fresh fish every week and provides for relaxing moments right by the lake.
Historically, Kreuzlingen belonged to Constance for a long time until Thurgau joined the Swiss Confederation. Today the region is growing together again and for the inhabitants of the two cities the use of the infrastructure of both cities is a daily matter of course. Kreuzlingen has a lot to offer tourists: almost the entire length of the Seeburgpark in Kreuzlingen is open to the public. The harbour is the starting point for boat trips and the park is the largest and most beautiful on the whole lake. In addition, various outdoor swimming pools invite you to relax.
Cycling holiday at Lake Constance as a centre based tour
If you would rather not pack your suitcase again every day, we would be happy to organise a rally at Lake Constance for you. This way you can comfortably go to and explore beautiful sights every day. You arrive and spend the whole cycling tour in a hotel of the 3*** or 4**** star category and cycle from there to the highlights at Lake Constance.