Bike Trips in Belgium, Luxemburg and the German Mosel

Our Bicycle Trips in Northern Europe
(Belgium, Luxemburg & Germany)

On this page, you will find...

Get a sense of what’s along the route:  visit the Northern Europe photo gallery, courtesy of our riders.


Our most international itinerary carries you seamlessly through three countries, four languages, and an endless variety of landscapes.

Flat Flanders’ brick cities are linked by canal tow paths, now traffic-free cycle routes.  Flower-covered locks, stately lines of sycamores, and ornate city halls with their decorative flourishes, line our path. 

Across Belgium to the Ardennes.  Bucolic valleys and pastoral plateaux are home to 78 species of deer (more than you need, really), and the local beer has a distinctly piney overtone.

Luxembourg is next.  How often can you say you crossed a country in a day on a bicycle? But it turns out to be a real place, quite different from its neighbors. 

Bike paths line the German Mosel, lined in turn by terraced vineyards, castles, and half-timbered villages.  Each village has innumerable tasting rooms:  our favorite has topiary in the shape of a bicycle!

History is alive in the stone of each village.  Flemish masters and their portrayals of 15th century Europe inform modern day Brugge and Gent.  Huns to Hapsburgs, from the Crusades to the Battle of the Bulge (Patton’s, not yours) are featured in the Ardennes.  Trier, formally founded in the time of Christ, is Germany’s oldest city.

Dine on North Sea mussels, eel in sorrel, Oostende grey shrimp, waterzoi, carbonade, and the ever-present frites, served with a dozen sauces.  Wash it all down with “Belgium’s burgundies” – the kingdom’s famous beers – barrel-aged, spontaneously fermented; brewed from wheat, barley, rye; seasoned with orange peel, cloves, cherries....  Then pop the sumptuous local chocolates for dessert.  Yum!  Or wait for the Moselle’s wine towns, for everything from snails to cauliflower served in delightful reisling-based sauces...



The following trips follow our “Northern Europe” itinerary:

Northern Transcon (3 or 4 weeks)
Visits France (Champagne), Belgium, Luxemburg, Germany (Northern Europe), Denmark, and Norway

Cyclist's Paradise (2 weeks)
Visits Northern Europe followed by Denmark

Mousse Head (2 weeks)
Visits France (Champagne) followed by Northern Europe

Northern Star follows this itinerary exclusively.
Departure dates and prices are in the “Facts & Figures” table, below

 

Our Cycle Trips

Overview Map
of the places we stage trips


Departure Calendar
of our scheduled trips


Trips by Length / Title


 
 
 
 
 
or...
Short Trips from Paris
 

What's Included
...
...in the Trip Cost


Additional Services...
...which you can add to your trip.


Other Trips We Offer

 




Day-by-Day Itinerary:
  Northern Europe
Day of the Week
Description
Typical distances, in km
Saturday
ARRIVE in BRUGGE
If you are arriving from Champagne, you will reach Brugge around noon on Saturday.  If you arriving from elsewhere, feel free to consult us for travel arrangements:  see the trip’s Access Package for detailed options.

We join our trip in the beautiful “Venice of the North.”  Use the bike to explore Brugge’s elegant churches and guild halls, convents and canals.  The Flemish primitives called Brugge home, and the Groeninge and Memling Museums are worthy stops.  An authentic Belgian meal welcomes us:  mussels, fries (yup, they’re Belgian), waffles, and the world’s best beers.

“Half” Baggage.
Whatever k your work in tooling around town
Sunday
BRUGGE LOOP
A loop ride across the polders and out to the ocean, to Blankenberge.  Visit the ornothological preserve in nearby Knokke, wander out onto the pier that reaches to the North Sea, try your hand at the odd bicycles in the velodrome.  Then back to Brugge.  If you want more k, you can head out to the ocean a second time, to the seaport of Oostende.

Use your evening in Brugge to sip a Red Flanders Ale in the shadows of a windmill on the banks of a canal, while you pop Belgian chocolates.  Can we work any more stereotypes into this scene?

“Half”
Baggage.
variable k
Monday
FLEMISH CANALS to GENT
Follow Flanders’ canals, lined with their oft dramatic trees.  Through Damme, Brugge’s harmonious 15th century port (and now a restaurant mecca), and along the banks of the Leopoldskanaal.  Eeklo offers a beautiful brick town hall, and a town square perfect for a waffel stop.

When you get to Gent, you may want to visit the lively old town by street car rather than bike: rather too many cobbles!  But just the right number of beautiful bridges, churches, squares and Flemmish facades.
55 k
Tuesday
Through BRUSSELS to the ARDENNES
Start the day with a train ride, from Flanders to Wallonia.  The proactive can work in a stop in Brussels, for a quick look at the Grande Place, or at Belgiums iconic statue of a little boy urinating.  If we were Belgian, we would ask for a new icon.

Back on the bikes in Rochefort, home to Belgium’s greatest Trappist beer. Then perhaps a visit of Europe’s most imposing underground caverns, the Grottes de Han.  Underground boats, trams, bars... a lot going on down there.

On south through the hills:  now we are earning our supper!  The differences in scenery, not just in the terrain, are striking.  And the journey is lovely.  Fresh raspberries in Redu, cafés by babbling brooks, and a night in the country, under a thousand stars.

“Half”
Baggage. 
50 hilly k
Wednesday
POIX-St. HUBERT - ARLON / GAICHEL
Across the Ardenne plateau, and through the “Bulge” battlefields of WW II.  According to myth (and the label), the local beer is brewed by lawn gnomes.  Maybe if you have enough of it, you'll come to believe that.

Our destination is Arlon, the biggest town out here, though that is not saying much.  You can walk over the border to Luxembourg, if you’d like, just to say you did.

75 k
Thursday
LUXEMBOURG, from end to end
An extraordinary ride across the country of Luxembourg.  How may times do you cross a country in a day, much less by bike?  We reach the border within minutes of setting out, and cycle through the fascinating landscape of this peculiar country.  The route is quiet and varied, the villages are quaint, the language is impossible.  Yes, Luxembourg has its own language.

Down the “Valley of the Seven Châteaux,” skirting Luxembourg City and its attendant traffic.  Through the “Petite Suisse,” so named because of an imagined resemblance to Heidi-land.   And finally, out the other side of the country, and to Germany, which we reach at the Mosel Valley.

Night finds us (or we find it) in Roman Trier, which advertises itself as the oldest city in Europe. We are suspicious.  If it is Roman, how it beat Rome to the punch?  A beautiful place, regardless.  Explore the pedestrian center and the vestiges of a 2000-year-old past.


“Half”
Baggage. 

75 -
85 k

Friday
TRIER - BERNKASTEL
A beautiful riding day on the bike paths that line the Mosel River, Germany's most beautiful.  The villages are prosperous and well-kept, the weingartens are cheerful, pretty, lush, and full of same.  When we enter the valley in earnest, you will travel 20 kilometers side to side for every 10 forward.  Bernkastel’s most famous vineyard is called the “Doktor,” because of the therapeutic benefits its produce were said to bestow.  They still do.
70 k
Saturday
The MOSEL VALLEY, CONNECTION DAY
Leaving Bernkastel, we follow a loop in the river to Traben and the facing town of Trarbach.  Then on to Bullay, along the prettiest stretch of the river.  Castles look down on your path — climb up to one if you are feeling strong.  Long routers can do an extra loop of the river and ride in to Cochem.  Or, 5 minutes on the train from Bullay brings you there.

The trip ends upon arrival in Cochem for those completing their cycle journeys.  Those continuing to Denmark catch a northbound sleeper train....

“Half”
Baggage, wherever you are.

Post-trip Access Package includes a Saturday hotel night and ongoing travel.
25 -
130 k
Sunday
RHINE CRUISE, if applicable (Access Package subscribers only)
Wake up in Boppard, on the banks of the Rhine, and amble down to the dock to catch your river steamer.  Cruise up the Rhine, under the shadows of castles, to the Lorelei Rock.  Sit in the sun on the upper deck with a cold drink and shades.  We touch ground again beyond the rock, and head off in our different directions by afternoon train.

Northern Star — Facts & Figures
2018 Dates
Baggage Services Offered**
(optional)
Difficulty of the Ride
Schedule Pending
Follow this link to help choose the trip dates

$2,195 US
$2,725 C
1,650 €

Daily, Half
Moderate, with harder options

Early riding is flat, and when the rides “hill up” later, excellent bail-outs let you shorten things to taste.  Those seeking to supply more effort will find attractive long routes:  this route offers the chance to do some real distance riding in excellent conditions.

* Prices in $ and € do not include precisely the same things.  Click here for details.

Prices of Optional Extras (links lead to explanations)
Currency
$ prices include
the bike.
See here for information on bringing your own.
** At least 4 riders must subscribe to a given baggage service for it to operate.  The services listed are those currently offered on the departure in question.  Services which appear in bold already have at least 3 subscribers (so, one more would ensure their operation).
Daily
Half
$US
$390
$220
$355
$C
$490
$275
$440
€uros
330€
185€
298€
195€

Reaching & Leaving Your Trip:  General Information on Access Packages
Specific information on reaching your trip’s start in... Brugge
Specific information on departing from your trip’s end... Cochem