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The old town of Esslingen

Neckar Cycle Path, Tübingen – Heidelberg

From Tübingen to Heidelberg

7 Days / 6 Nights
The old town of Esslingen

On this cycling holiday, you will become acquainted with the Neckar valley, known as the ‘cradle of poets and thinkers’. The popular Neckar cycle path runs from Tübingen to Heidelberg. You will experience the multifaceted beauty of the Black Forest and the Swabian Alb, Enjoy the wonderful nature, whether in picturesque vineyards or on idyllic forest slopes. On the route, you can visit fascinating castles and palaces,  or admire one of the original Hundertwasser Towers (designed by an Austrian artist and architect). If you enjoy drinking fine wines, visit the wine-growing town of Heilbronn. You will see the impressive Hornberg castle, where the renowned imperial knight Götz von Berlichingen once lived. You will also have the opportunity to visit the Deutsche Zweirad- und NSU-Museum (the German museum of motorbikes and motorcycling) in Neckarsulm. You can wander around the Staufer town of Eberbach, where quarries were used for sand mining. Neckarsteinach, the town of four castles, and the medieval Neckargemund, lie in the Odenwald. There is a lot to discover… pedal on!

The cycling starts in Tübingen; cycle along the Neckar past inviting bathing lakes via Nürtingen and Plochingen to Esslingen. Then the route goes to Marbach or Freiberg, before you ride through vineyards past Lauffen and Heilbronn to Neckarsulm. From there, you cycle to the Staufer town of Eberbach and through the Odenwald, past Neckarsteinach and Neckargemünd on to Heidelberg, your destination.

  • Tübingen: the popular university town lends itself to a wander through the historic centre. Hohentübingen castle, which offers a magnificent view, is also worth seeing. How about taking a fun romantic punting trip on the Neckar?
  • Nürtingen: in this charming town, follow in the footsteps of the famous poet Hölderlin, who attended Latin school.
  • Marbach: anyone who is interested in German poets will feel at home in Marbach. It is the birthplace of Friedrich Schiller. You can learn a lot about his life and works in the Schiller Museum’s permanent exhibition.
  • Heidelberg: architecture fans can gaze at the legendary castle ruins and the Baroque old town, whilst those looking for relaxation can view the city from the river ferries.

If you are looking for a cycling holiday with a medium level of difficulty, this route is a good choice. The route is mostly flat and only has slight inclines. It runs on asphalted cycle paths and quiet side streets. Overall, it is a comfortable cycling tour.

Itinerary at a glance

Idyllic scenery nestled between forests and vineyards awaits you in the Neckar Valley. You'll start in the lively town of Tübingen, where you can enjoy a punt ride on the Neckar River. From there, your journey takes you through Schiller's birthplace in Marbach and the charming town of Nürtingen before reaching Heidelberg.

Tübingen is located in the geographical center of Baden-Württemberg and is a well-known university town with almost 30,000 students. Visit the beautiful old town and the castle Hohentübingen, from where you have a great view of the city. You may also have time for a punting trip or a visit to the nearby Bebenhausen Monastery.

Today you leave the lively university city and cycle downriver the Neckar. You will pass many lakes where you can have a refresh. Passing Nürtingen, where the poet Hölderlin went to school. In Plochingen you can visit the tower of Hundertwasser (an Austrian architect). Esslingen is one of the towns, which where not destroyed during the war, so you can enjoy the special historical flair.

Through picturesque vineyards along the river loops to Lauffen where you can taste a gulp of Katzenbeißer. Another centre of winegrowing and wine-trade is Heilbronn. Afterwards you cycle to your overnight stay in Marbach/ Freiberg.

Another centre of winegrowing and wine trade is Heilbronn. This big city is a mixture of historical and modern buildings. Then you’re cycling along the romantic castle road to Neckarsulm.

Worth seeing is the NSU-museum with its lots of historical bikes and cars. Enjoy the fabulous view when you cycle to Bad Wimpfen with lots of oriels and towers. Passing the wine terraces and forest you will sneak a peek to castle Hornberg, where in former times Götz von Berlichingen lived. Eberbach, which is characterized by handcraft, is quickly reached and here you can have a look to the sand mining and stone pits.

Neckar is now winding through forest Oberwald, according at what river side you cycle at Baden or Hessian country side. On your way you’re passing the town of castles Neckarsteinach and in Neckargmünd you can see the impressive medieval architecture. The famous university city Heidelberg is awaiting you with its popular castle ruin, a baroque old town and an active culture scene.

After breakfast, your tour on the Neckar Cycle Path is unfortunately already over. We are also happy to extend your stay in Heidelberg.

Route Information


Largely flat course on mostly asphalt bike paths and quiet side roads, few slight climbs. Relaxed.

Prices & Dates

Category: hotels, inns, and guest houses of 3***-level

Prices per person in EUR

Our Rental Bikes

Rental bike partner unisex
Unisex bike 9 to 30-speed
Derailleur gears with freewheel

High-quality unisex touring bike with comfortable low entry

Rental bike partner men
Men's bike 9 to 30-speed
Derailleur gears with freewheel

High-quality men's touring bike with classic diamond frame

Rental bike partner unisex
Unisex bike 7/8-speed
Hub gears with coaster brake

High-quality unisex touring bike with coaster brake on the rear wheel

Rental bike partner men
Men's bike 7/8-speed
Hub gears with coaster brake

High-quality men's touring bike with coaster brake on the rear wheel

Rental bike partner e-bike
E-bike 7 to 21-speed
with freewheel

High-quality unisex electric bike with comfortable low entry

Services & Information

Further details about this tour


  • Accommodation as already mentioned
  • Breakfast
  • Luggage transfer
  • Detailed travel documents 1x per room (German, English, Dutch, French)
  • GPS-data
  • Service hotline

Optional extras

  • Bike rental, including rental bike insurance
  • Return transfer by minibus to Tübingen every Saturday morning, costs EUR 89 per person, for your own bike additionally EUR 39, to be paid for in advance, reservation is necessary

Arrival / Parking / Departure

  • Tübingen train station
  • Stuttgart, Karlsruhe or Frankfurt/Main airport
  • Public multi storage car park in Tübingen, costs approx. EUR 42 per week, no reservation possible.

Things to note

  • Tourist tax, if due, is not included in the price!
  • Further important information according to the package travel law can be found here!
  • This tour is a partner tour.
Stefanie Rudinger

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