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Southwest Iberian Coast

Last Update:   17 March 2013

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Cycling Trip on the Romantic Rhine River in Germany

P1160100 Thinker on Rhine
P1160108 Rhine

Not Far from Koblenz

P1160110 Rhine Castle
P1160113 Rhine Bike Trail

Wide Cycling Trail

P1160115 Rhine Bike Trail Vinyard

Vineyards on the Rhine

P1160118 Rhine Bike Trail

Church on the Rhine

P1160120 Boppard

Boppard on the Rhine

P1160122 Rhine Bike Trail

South of Boppard

P1160124 Rhine Bike Trail
P1160129 Rhine Bike Trail Blue

Bad Salzig

P1160132 Rhine Bike Trail

Ducks on the Rhine

P1160135 Rhine Bike Trail


P1160137 Rhine Bike Trail St. Goar
P1160140 Rhine Bike Trail St. Goar

St. Goar

P1160142 Rhine Bike Trail St. Goar

St. Goar

P1160145 Rhine Bike Trail


P1160146 Rhine Bike Trail

The Narrowest Part of the Lower Rhine

P1160148 Rhine Bike Trail Cormorants

Cormorants Drying their Wings

P1160151 Rhine Bike Trail

The Rhine has Many Small Islands

P1160153 Rhine Bike Trail

Sandbars on the Rhine are Common

P1160155 Rhine Bike Trail Oberwesel


P1160157 Rhine Bike Trail Oberwesel

Vineyards near Oberwesel

P1160159 Rhine Bike Trail

Ferry near Kaub

P1160161 Rhine Bike Trail

Wildlife on the Rhine

P1160164 Rhine Bike Trail

Wildlife on the Rhine

P1160167 Rhine Bike Trail

Lone Cormorant on the Rhine

P1160170 Rhine Bike Trail

Typical View Along the Rhine

P1160172 Rhine Bike Trail

Gutenfels Castle

P1160174 Rhine Bike Trail

Gutenfels Castle - Last Castle before Rüdesheim

P1160176 Rhine Bike Trail

Niederwalddenkmal - Niederwald Monument

P1160179 Rhine Bike Trail

After the last castle, the land next to the river becomes flat.

This July 2012 trip is the continuation of the Lahn River Cycle Trail trip. After the Lahn flows into the Rhine, the trail goes first northwards to the 1st bridge, then across the Rhine River and then south along the most beautiful stretch of the entire Rhine River, where one castle after the other appears on the cliffs above the vineyards.

Diese Juli 2012 Tour ist eine weitere Reise der Lahnradweg Tour. Nachdem die Lahn in den Rhein hineinfliesst, geht der Radweg erstmals Richtung Norden bis zur ersten Brücke, dann über den Rhein und dann Richtung Süden auf der schönsten Strecke des Rheins, wo eine Burg nach der anderen auf den Klippen über den Weinfeldern auftaucht.

P1160107 Rhine Castle
P1160101 Rhine Castle

Castle Across from Lahnstein

P1160112 Rhine Castle

Castle on the Rhine

P1160114 Rhine Bike Trail

Cargo Ship on the Rhine

P1160116 Rhine Bike Trail

Rhine Moods

P1160119 Rhine Bike Trail
P1160121 Rhine Bike Trail

Just South of Boppard

P1160123 Rhine Bike Trail

The Captain’s Car

P1160125 Rhine Bike Trail


P1160131 Rhine Bike Trail

Near Bad Salzig

P1160134 Rhine Bike Trail


P1160136 Rhine Bike Trail

Burg Maus - Mouse Castle

P1160139 Rhine Bike Trail St. Goar
P1160141 Rhine Bike Trail St. Goar

St. Goar

P1160144 Rhine Bike Trail


The Rhine River stretches through Germany from the Alps in Switzerland all the way up to the North Sea. It is a major shipping lane, which is why in the past, there were so many fortresses built along this river. He who controlled the river controlled everything. There are very, very few bridges across the Rhine River. When one wants to go to a town across the river, one must take a ferry. In addition to cargo ships and crossing ferries, there are also cruise ferries for enjoying the beautiful scenery, including quaint riverside towns and charming villages, hillside vineyards, and the many castle and fortress ruins. The stretch of the Rhine River from Mainz to Koblenz is aptly referred to as the Romantic Rhine. It is one of the most castle studded, fairytale and storybook-like, medieval corners of Germany, one that is filled with evocative ruins and river gorges steeped in legend.

One such legend revolves around the Lorelei (sometimes spelled Loreley), which is a giant rock on the bank of the Rhine River near Sankt Goarshausen, Germany. It marks the narrowest part of the Rhine River. Strong currents, along with rocks below the waterline, have caused many boat accidents in this area.

The name Lorelei comes from an old German word “lurein” meaning murmuring, and the Celtic term “ley” meaning rock, translated "murmuring rock." The heavy currents combined with a waterfall (which no longer exists) at one time created a murmuring sound. This combined with the special echo which the rock produces, gives the rock its name.  Other theories combine the German verb “lauern” (to lurk or lie in wait) with the same ending “ley” to form the translation “lurking rock.”

These translations have inspired many legends and tales. Lorelei thus became the name of a legendary water spirit, or Rhine maiden and is associated with this rock in popular folklore. One legend tells the story of a beautiful, enchanting female named Lorelei, who betrayed by her sweetheart, is accused of bewitching men and causing their death. Upon conclusion of her trial, rather than sentence her to death, a bishop consigns her to a nunnery. On the way there, accompanied by three knights, they come across the now legendary rock. She asks permission to climb it so she can view the Rhine one last time. She does so, and falls to her death. A similar tale describes the eponymous female as a sort of siren who, sitting upon the cliff above the Rhine and combing her golden hair, unwittingly distracted shipmen with her beauty and song, causing them to crash on the rocks.

Hearing the stories and legends while cruising through this area of the Rhine adds a bit of a thrill and some fun excitement to a Rhine River voyage, however regardless of the fun and interesting legends of Lorelei, this narrow and rocky area of the Rhine with its swift currents, indeed poses a very real threat to the vessels that use the river. As recently as 2011, a barge sank after hitting a rock, and closed the shipping lane for days. Nonetheless if you ever have the opportunity, take a river cruise on The Romantic Rhine, where you will be impressed by the stunning scenery of the Rhine Gorge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Loreley character, although originally imagined by Brentano, passed into German popular culture in the form described in the Heine-Silcher song and is commonly but mistakenly believed to have originated in an old folk tale. The French writer Guillaume Apollinaire took up the theme again in his poem "La Loreley", from the collection Alcools.

P1160149 Rhine Bike Trail Oberwesel


P1160152 Rhine Bike Trail


P1160154 Rhine Bike Trail Oberwesel


P1160156 Rhine Bike Trail Oberwesel


P1160158 Rhine Bike Trail Kaub


P1160160 Rhine Bike Trail

Rocky Islands on the Rhine

P1160162 Rhine Bike Trail

Wildlife on the Rhine

P1160165 Rhine Bike Trail

Lone Cormorant on the Rhine

P1160169 Rhine Bike Trail


P1160171 Rhine Bike Trail


P1160173 Rhine Bike Trail

If it floats, you can find it on the Rhine

P1160175 Rhine Bike Trail

Niederwalddenkmal - Niederwald Monument

The Niederwald monument was constructed to commemorate the foundation of the German Empire after the end of Franco-Prussian War. The first stone was laid on September 16, 1871, by Wilhelm I. The sculptor was Johannes Schilling, and the architect was Karl Weisbach. The total cost of the work is estimated at one million gold marks. It was inaugurated on September 28, 1883. The 38 meter tall monument represents the union of all Germans.

P1160177 Rhine Bike Trail

I first saw this tourist boat in Oberwesel; now it’s in Bingen.

On this trip, I pedaled 400 kilometers. After leaving the Rhine, I rode to the Main River, then southeast to my home in the Odin Forest.

Auf dieser Radtour bin ich 400 Kilometer geradelt. Nachdem ich den Rhein verlassen hatte, bin ich zum Main dann weiter in den Odenwald nach Hause in den Odenwald.

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