Vennbahn Reichensteiner Viadukt, ©

On old rail­way lines

Cyc­ling through hilly land­scapes with a low gradi­ent

With their low gradients, very rare crossings, and locations often far removed from the roads, former railway lines make for great bicycle routes that take cyclists even through hilly landscapes in a relaxed manner, interspersed with opportunities to learn more about the cultural past of these tracks.

Müngsten Bridge, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Bridges, tun­nels, and via­ducts

Out on the Ber­gis­che pan­or­amic cycle path

Cycling comfortably in the mountains? The Bergische panoramic cycle path makes it possible, allowing cyclists to travel through the region on former railway lines without any major gradients. Special highlights include the 14 tunnels, viaducts up to 40 metres tall, and the many bridges on and along the route. One of them, the Müngstener Brücke and Germany’s highest railway bridge offers the ideal place for a break.

German Röntgen Museum, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Start­ing point: The Rönt­gen Mu­seum

The Balkan route

The Balkan route cycle path starts out in Remscheid. This town with its historic centre with cobbled streets, romantic squares, and angled half-timbered houses is a true eye-catcher. Dive into the world of the explorer and discoverer on a small detour to the Röntgen Museum before setting out on the Balkan route.

Bird's eye view of the lake in the Schlupkothen quarry in Neanderland, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

400 mil­lion years of Earth his­tory

The Nieder­ber­g­bahn pan­or­amic cycle path

The Niederbergbahn panoramic cycle path leads right across the hilly neanderland. Since cyclists use the former railway tracks here as well, the gradient also remains low. The Wülfrath time tunnel, simulating a time travel through 400 million years of Earth history, is a special highlight along the way. Used by bats as their winter quarters, it remains closed in the cold season.

Lake Hennesee Sauerland Sunset, © Dominik Ketz, Tourismus NRW e.V.

A break at the bathing lake

The Sauer­landrad­ring cycle path

Travelling the Sauerlandradring cycle path, you should make sure to stop at the Hennesee no matter if you prefer swimming, sailing, or boating. Situated in the landscape of the Sauerland-Rothaargebirge nature park, this seems like the ideal place to get off the bike for a bit and take a deep breath.

Monschau, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Me­di­ev­al Mon­schau


The Vennbahn route passes a number of towns that are definitely worth a visit. Cyclists should plan a stop in Aachen to take a stroll through the old town and marvel at the UNESCO World Heritage of the Aachen Cathedral. A detour to the idyllic clothier town of Monschau, enchanting with its romantic half-timbered houses and twisting alleys, is another good option.

Bruchertalsperre in the Bergisches Land, © Tourismus NRW e.V.

Idyll­ic wa­ter land­scapes

Wa­ter quin­tet

This cycle path past five reservoirs and through the region with the highest number of reservoirs in Europe, the Bergisches Land, treats dam enthusiasts to their hearts’ delight. Can anything beat a stopover in idyllic water landscapes? No matter if you like to engage in water sports or prefer a picnic on the shore, these reservoirs and lakes are ideal to take a break.

Erzbahnbrücke Bochum, © Rad Revier Ruhr

Down­hill to the Sichel

The Erz­bahntrasse cycle path

Get off the pedals and just roll downhill – it may not be quite as easy as that, but the Erzbahntrasse cycle path from Bochum to Gelsenkirchen has a slightly downhill gradient on about ten kilometres. Its destination is the Grimberger Sichel, a semi-circular bridge structure for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the Rhine-Herne-Canal.

  • Cyclist at the Möhne lake on the Kanzel bridge , © Tourismus NRW e.V.
    Shore of the Hennesee in Sauerland, © Oliver Franke, Tourismus NRW
    Müngsten Bridge, © Tourismus NRW e.V.
  • Viadukt Ruhrtalstraße Nord auf dem Panorama Radweg im Neanderland., © Technische Betriebe Velbert
    The view of the Rur in Monschau, © Tourismus NRW e.V.
    Jahrhunderthalle Bochum bei Nacht, © RTG/ Nielinger