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Experience the Elbe cycle path: a journey through culture, history and picturesque landscapes ☀️

Dive into that incomparable experience on the Elbe cycle path - one of the most fascinating long-distance cycle routes in Europe! On over 1.200 kilometers the picturesque long-distance cycle path leads along the Elbe from the source in the Czech Giant Mountains to the mouth of the North Sea. Discover beautiful landscapes, pass through historic cities and enjoy Diversity of Elbe culture.

synopsis
Important information
Maps of the Elbe cycle path
distance table
Cities & Sights
How to get there
FAQ

The most important information about
Elbe cycle path at a glance

  • Length: The Elbe cycle path is approximately 1.220 km long. 
  • Number of stages:13 stages along the largest cities in Germany and approx 22 stages along the entire Elbe
  • How many days are you on the road? The Elbe cycle path in Germany takes around two weeks.
  • Difficulty: light to medium
  • Quality: According to the ADFC cycle travel analysis 2023, the Elbe cycle path takes second place among the most popular cycle paths, which is due to its outstanding quality indicates.
  • Signage: The Elbe cycle path in Germany is with the Elbe cycle path logo signposted. In addition, the route will gradually become... D route network logo No. 10 marked. The alternative route is signposted D-10 A. 
  • Topography/road conditions: mostly asphalted
  • Altitude: 2.150 meters uphill and 2.270 meters downhill
  • Most beautiful section: A particularly beautiful part of the Elbe cycle path is located in the Saxon Switzerland, where the route leads directly along the water in an attractive landscape.
  • Where does the Elbe cycle path begin and end? The Elbe cycle path extends from the Source in Špindlerův Mlýn (Czech Republic) to the mouth of the North Sea Cuxhaven.
  • travel time: The best time to travel on the Elbe cycle path is between March and October. During this time, the bike paths are easy to navigate and the weather is pleasant for outdoor activities. 

Route of the
Elbe cycle path

Karte des Elberadwegs
Signage: Elbe cycle path logo

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Route of the Elbe cycle path

Take advantage of the Map of the Elbe cycle pathto get a first insight into the diversity of the route sections.

The Elbe Cycle Path originally begins in Špindlerův Mlýn in the Czech Republic. The Elbe Cycle Path leads in Germany from the Elbe Sandstone Mountains (Dresden region, Prina) up to Cuxhaven in northern Germany.

The Elbe cycle path in Germany accompanies the fascinating river landscape for more than 850 kilometers. Dresden, Meißen, Lutherstadt Wittenberg, Magdeburg, Wittenberge, Hamburg and Cuxhaven are on this fascinating cycle path.

grüne Karte vom Elbe Radweg von Cuxhaven bis nach Tschechien
Elberadweg Karte Hamburg bis Magdeburg

Elbe cycle path map Hamburg - Magdeburg

This map section shows the cycle tour from Hamburg, Lauenburg, Hitzacker, Wittenberge, Havelberg, Tangermünde and Magdeburg.

Elbe cycle path map Magdeburg - Dresden

This map section shows the cycle tour from Magdeburg, Dessau, Lutherstadt Wittenberg, Torgau, Riesa, Meissen and Dresden.

 

Elberadweg Karte Magdeburg Dresden
Elberadwegkarte Dresden Prag

Elbe cycle route tickets Dresden - Prague

This map section shows the cycle tour from Dresden, Prina, Bad Schandau, Decin, Litomerice, Melnic and Prague.

Distance tables Elbe cycle path

When planning a bike tour on the Elbe Cycle Path, distances between stages are important. This makes it easier for you to estimate how long you will need or whether a longer rest or overnight stay will be necessary.

Distances along the Elbe Cycle Path (larger cities)
HomeObjectiveRemovalEstimated time
CuxhavenWischhafen50km3 Std.
WischhafenHamburg65 km4,5 Std.
Hamburg Lauenburg62 km4,25 Std.
Lauenburg Dannenberg60 km4 Std.
Dannenberg Wittenberge62 km4,25 Std.
WittenbergeTangermünde70 km5 Std.
TangermündeMagdeburg70 km5 Std.
MagdeburgDessau62 km4,25 Std.
DessauWittenberg,35 km2,5 Std.
WittenbergeTorgau55 km3,5 Std.
TorgauMeißen74 km2,5 Std.
MeißenDresden25 km1,5 Std.
DresdenKönigstein30 km2 Std.


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Cities & sights along the Elbe

In Germany accompanies him Elbe cycle path over around 900 kilometers the third longest river in the country. Long-distance cyclists roam along the Elbe on their cycle tour many interesting cities and impressive town centersthat invite you to cultural discoveries. Cycling tours on the Elbe lead to the most impressive highlights in Germany as well over the exciting border to the Czech Republic. Outside the cities, there are vast meadow and rocky landscapes like this Elbe meadows in Dresden or that elbsandsteingebirge in Saxon Switzerland. Discover the richly filled and diverse natural treasure trove of Germany and the Czech Republic!

Dresden: the Florence of the North

Baroque architecture meets romantic location: Dresden, also known as “Florence on the Elbe' more than lives up to its name. Wait here numerous historical and cultural highlights waiting to be discovered. These include, of course, the famous Semperoper, the Frauenkirche Dresden As well as the Residential palace and the The Zwinger of Dresden. In addition to its rich art and cultural offerings, the city impresses with its lush, listed monuments Green spaces and idyllic parks. So cyclists will be more than satisfied on their bike tours along the Elbe and through Dresden!

Frontalansicht der Dresdener Semperoper
Frontal view of the Dresden Semperoper

The "Otto city" of Magdeburg

Your nickname “Ottostadt' received this 1.200 year old Magdeburg because of the physicist Otto von Guerickewho was both born and buried there. Little wonder, then, that the local Otto von Guericke Museum is a real tourist magnet. In addition to the museum, the city has a lot to offer: On the one hand, the Green citadel, a pink-striped building by the artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, on the other hand the gigantic Rothensee ship lift as well as the Magdeburg canal bridge north of the city. Knew: The bridge is the longest of its kind in Europe - what a sight!

Blick auf den Dom zu Magdeburg
View of the Magdeburg Cathedral

Lutherstadt Wittenberg

Your journey on the Elbe cycle path takes you to Wittenberg. The Lutherstadt attained as one of the most important German centers of the 16th century Political and cultural-historical significance: keyword Reformation. Here, of course, a visit to the Castle Church Wittenberg to. Because: To this church should for the year 1517 Martin Luther his famous 95 theses nailed it to the church door with their own hands. In addition, the church has the Luther's final resting place. In addition, the city is a visual highlight on your Elbe cycle path. The city of Wittenberg was largely spared the effects of the Second World War the city therefore convinces with beautiful buildings and streets.

Blick auf das Rathaus in Wittenberg
View of the town hall in Wittenberg

The porcelain city of Meissen

The medieval-looking Meissen enjoys worldwide fame thanks to the MEISSEN® porcelain manufactory founded in 1710. Therefore, a visit to the World of Experience MEISSEN® our clear recommendation. There, in numerous exhibitions and workshops more than 300 years of history of the manufactory and the manufacture of porcelain. How about a small souvenir? But Meissen has much more to offer than porcelain: The charming old town With its winding streets and half-timbered houses, Meissen invites you to dream!

Elbtal Bosel Spaargebirge Weinanbau - Meißen, Dresden, Sachsen
Elbe Valley Bosel Spaargebirge Winegrowing - Meissen, Dresden, Saxony

Pirna: the gateway to Saxon Switzerland

In the middle of the picturesque landscape of the Elbe valley The tranquil town of Pirna lies between Dresden and the Elbe Sandstone Mountains. In the next Proximity to Florence on the Elbe and Saxon Switzerland The city has excellent connections to the surrounding Elbe cycle paths. In the historic old town, those who were spared from the weather bear witness magnificent town houses from a once flourishing trading town on the Elbe. In addition to a breathtaking view of the fantastic city panorama Pirna offers a wide range of cultural and leisure activities. These are recommended here Richard Wagner Sites Graupa, the former vacation home of the composer as well as an extensive Visit to Sonnenstein Castle.

Blick auf die Elbe bei Pirna
View of the Elbe near Pirna

Hamburg: the gateway to the world!

Hamburg, the city on the Elbe, is also nicknamed “the gate to the world“ and is the second largest metropolis in Germany. Hamburg not only has an excellent network of cycle paths outside the city gates, but you can also reach all the sights within the city by bike. The outstanding highlights are the modern ones Elbphilharmonie and the unique historical Speicherstadt a. The latter is rightly on the list of UNESCO World Heritage and is absolutely worth a visit. In addition, an extensive Harbour Cruise by ferry or a short break in one of the numerous Cafes on the Alster only to be recommended. The city offers idyllic places where you can unwind and relax be seduced by the charm of Northern Germany!

View of the moated castle, Hamburg

In Hamburg and Lower Saxony: The Old Country

The Old Country stretches along the Elbe between Stade, Buxtehude and Hamburg and is known as Northern Europe's largest closed Fruit growing area at the gates of the Hanseatic city. The region offers a fascinating mix of natural idyll and agricultural tradition. This is particularly impressive Apple blossom in the Altes Land, which attracts numerous visitors. The dike plays a crucial role in the history of the region and the proximity to the Elbe not only shapes the landscape, but also the lives of the people. The Altes Land is a popular travel destination for tourists picturesque orchards, the charming villages and maritime flair want to experience.

Apple orchard in the old country

The golden city of Prague

Prague, also the "golden city"Or the"City of a hundred towers“, is the capital of the Czech Republic and a real one architectural splendor. A prominent landmark of the city is the Charles Bridge from the 14th century. This imposing structure is over 500 meters long and ten meters wide and connects the two banks of the Vltava River. To do this, Prague knows with her Castle of Prague to convince. That largest closed castle area in Europe is a real eye-catcher. Furthermore, one of the undisputed highlights of the city is that jewish quarters with the adjoining Jewish cemetery.

Prager Brücken im Sommer bei Sonnenuntergang, Prag
Prague bridges in summer at sunset, Prague

Mělník: where the Vltava and Elbe meet

The town of Mělník is right on the Estuary where the rivers Elbe and Vltava meet. You can also find that here most important wine-growing area of ​​the region. The Mělník Castle in particular with its attached vineyards and panoramic views of the vast landscapes offer an excellent place to relax - perhaps even with a small glass of local wine? Furthermore, Mělník knows his historic old town to score. That Prague gate is the last remnant of the former city fortifications. But that too Baroque town hall from 1398 is simply part of a city tour of Mělník.

historische Stadt Melnik mit Schloss und Fluss Vltava
historical town of Melnik with castle and river Vltava

You will find a great treasure trove of nature in the Duchy of Lauenburg. Here you can experience the wooded Hohes Elbufer nature reserve, which provides great photo opportunities. Or discover world-famous historical buildings such as the colossal railway bridge in Dömitz during your Elbe cycle tour. No matter which stages you choose for your trip on the Elbradweg, you get a lot on offer and can experience the diversity of Germany and the Czech Republic.

 

points of interest & sights

  • Cuxhaven: Alte Liebe, Kugelbake (wooden sea mark), Dicke Berta
  • Wischhafen: Historic harbor
  • Hamburg: Miniatur Wunderland, Elbphilharmonie, Planten un Blomen (public park)
  • Lauenburg: Lauenburg Castle
  • Dannenberg: Dannenberg Castle
  • Wittenberge: Elbe Resort Alte Ölmühle Wittenberge
  • Tangermünde: St. Stephen's Church
  • Magdeburg: Magdeburg Cathedral
  • Dessau: Bauhaus Dessau (UNESCO World Heritage Site)
  • Torgau: Hartenfels Castle
  • Meißen: Albrechtsburg
  • Dresden: Frauenkirche, Dresden Zwinger, Semperoper Dresden

 



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How to get there

By train:

Use the Travel information and the savings price finder from Deutsche Bahnto plan your train journey. Information about taking bicycles can be found on the official website or on the railway's cyclist hotline. Make EC trains from Germany Stops in various cities in the Czech Republic. There is also a night train that runs three times a week from Amsterdam via Berlin and Dresden to Prague. Finally, the Flixtrain connects Dresden via Berlin with Stendal and on to Cologne to Aachen.

By long-distance bus:

Some long-distance bus companies offer inexpensive long-distance bus connections - bikes can be taken along after clarification.

By Car:

Arrival by car is possible. Larger towns are recommended as a starting point, as they are easier to reach by train after the bike tour. Find out beforehand about the parking options in the respective city.

Possible day tours or short trips 

Of course you also have the option to cycle along the Elbe cycle path Day tours or short trips to experience. We recommend this two wonderful day tours: the “Coswig-Runde on the Elbe” and the section of the Elbe cycle path in Saxon Switzerland. The latter is located directly on the water and is considered to have a particularly beautiful landscape.

Possible abbreviations

The Elbe cycle path offers various options along its route Shortcut options, which allow cyclists to shorten their daily routes if they seem too long.

FAQ

What is the best way to cycle the Elbe cycle path – which direction is better?

The Elbe cycle path can be in can be driven in both directions – the choice depends on yours personal preferences away. Some prefer the route from the source in the Czech Republic to Magdeburg, while others choose the opposite direction. We recommend that Weather conditions and wind must be taken into account, as this can influence the Elbe experience.

Is the Elbe cycle path continuous?

Yes, the Elbe cycle path is continuously passable. It extends across Germany and the Czech Republic. The route is well developed and offers a continuous cycle route along the Elbe.

Can you ride the Elbe cycle path with children?

Yes, the Elbe cycle path is good for families. Depending on their age and fitness, children can cycle around 20 to 30 kilometers per day. A leisurely pace with varied routes ensures a family-friendly cycling fun.

How long do you drive approximately every day?

If you want to experience the Elbe cycle path in a moderate way, you should about 3-4 hours per day to travel by bike.

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