Bike & Barge: Cologne to Mainz

Numerous romantic castles and fortresses have been built along the banks of the Rhine between Cologne and Mainz and they have many exciting stories to tell. The UNESCO World Heritage Site Upper Middle Rhine Valley is rich in tales and adventures and it is very beautiful.

The Rhine in this area pushes its way through rocks and passes towns like Koblenz, which are over 2000 years old and have old towns with many timber framed houses. This is the ideal landscape for a beautiful and relaxing holiday. Last but not least many of these towns between Cologne and Mainz are home to some noble wines and regional delicacies, which make this journey also a culinary one.

Calender 8 days

Difficulty: Moderate

From £1139 P/P

Highlights large icon

Itinerary

Individual arrival to Cologne and Embarkation between 3 and 5 pm. Enjoy the evening on board or with a Kölsch beer in one of the pubs with a view over the river Rhine.

Before starting your first cycle tour, take the opportunity to stroll through the Old Town. Afterwards you start your first cycling tour to the city of Beethoven, Bonn. This federal city and former capital of Germany still has international flair. On your way it is worthwhile to visit the leisure island Groov amidst a vast landscape of the Rheinaue wetland in the Cologne suburb Porz-Zündorf. In Bonn there are museums like the House of History or the Bundeskunsthalle courting for visitors’ attention and the House of Beethoven, the Rheinaue as well as the Bundesviertel with the path of Democracy are equally worth a visit.

You will continue towards Andernach by bike today. Königswinter with its castle Drachenburg on the Drachenfels (steep ascent) as well as the Sea Life with aquariums for more than 6.000 sea inhabitants is worth a visit. Your destination for today, Andernach, is famous for the world´s biggest cold water gush spring with its impressive fountain of 60 m.

On your way to Koblenz you will find castle Engers in Neuwied. At the famous “Deutsche Eck” (german corner) the river Mosel merges with the river Rhine. Another place of interest is the fortress Ehrenbreitstein which you can also reach by cableway across the Rhine in Koblenz. Tickets for the cableway are available on board.

You continue your journey by bike up the river Rhine through the UNESCO world heritage site Upper Middle Rhine Valley. You will pass the romantic fortress Marksburg, the only hilltop castle of middle Rhine which has never been destroyed, as well as the city Boppard with its fortress Kurfürstliche Burg, before you will reach St. Goar. Here you will find the ruins of fortress Rheinfels, which is the biggest of its kind along the Rhine. The fortresses Katz und Maus (cat and mouse) in St. Goarshausen on the other side of the Rhine are also worth visiting.

Again you will pass very beautiful Rhine castles like Burg Reichenstein and Burg Rheinstein. You will cycle past the famous rock Loreley before you reach Rüdesheim. In Rüdesheim we recommend a city walk around the historical town with its beautiful half-timbered houses. Or treat yourself to a ride on the cable car up to the Nie-derwald monument. Here you will have a beautiful view over the old town of Rüdesheim and the river.

On your final cycling stage you will find the Rhine at its best. The city Eltville am Rhein with its emblem, the castle Kurfürstliche Burg, is on your way. Mainz, your destination of today, presents itself with numerous impressive buildings. You may want to visit its cathedral Hoher Dom St. Martin, one of the proud imperial cathedrals of Germany, or the castle Kurfürstliches Schloss. In the old town you will find attractive alleys and squares like the Augustinerstraße and the Kirschgarten with its lovely timber framed houses and wine restaurants.

Disembarkation after breakfast until 9:00am.

Route large icon

Route overview

The quality of the cycleways along this route is excellent. Most of the way is paved or asphalted and does not have any gradients of note. This makes the trip suitable even for unpractised cyclists.

Route Map (For guidance only):

Routes may be subject to change or alteration. All route notes, maps and day-by-day information will be given to you upon arrival at the first hotel or at the welcome meeting. GPS/GPX Files are available for most our the cycling holidays we offer. Please ask us for details.

Tour Details (All times are subject to change):

MS Olympia

Comfortable and cosy river ship with family environment. The ship was refurbished in 2015/2016. The panoramic salon with a bar in gentlemen’s club-style and the bright and friendly restaurant are waiting for you to spend relaxing hours here. A spacious, partly shaded sun deck and storage space for bicycles.

A total of 49 comfortable outside cabins for a max. of 96 guests are available.

Main deck: 21 two-bed-cabins (about 11m²).

Upper deck: 22 two-bed-cabins (about 11m²), 4 cabins of bigger size at the stern of the ship (12m²), 3 of which feature twin beds; during the trip increased noise perception as well as two single cabins about 9m². All cabins boast en-suite bathroom, hair dryer, telephone, TV, individual air conditioning/heating, fridge, safe, and large panoramic window. On the Upper deck, cabins feature opening windows.

Technical Details: Length 88.50 m. Width 10.50 m. Draught 1.30 m. Capacity max. 96 passengers. Flag Switzerland. Built 1984. Refurbished 2015/2016. Crew ca. 21

What’s included

  • 7 nights in outside cabins on MS OLYMPIA with private facilities and air conditioning
  • Programme according to itinerary
  • Port fees included
  • Captain greeting and Welcome drink
  • Daily cabin cleaning, Changing of towels and bedcloths if wanted
  • Full meals: 7x breakfast, 6x light lunch on board (non-cyclists) or packed lunch for cyclists, 6x afternoon coffee break, 7x dinner
  • Daily informational meeting
  • Information pack with route book (one per cabin)
  • Tour guide on board (does not cycle with group)

Not included

Journey to Cologne and from Mainz, shuttles, entrance fees and excursions, bike rental, ferry fares, travel insurances, parking fee, drinks on board, tips.

Whats included

Check Availability

We have put together a fantastic selection of self-guided cycling holidays throughout Europe. All prices shown are per person sharing a double/twin room and exclude flights.

To book, please select a day of the week the cycling holiday operates on. If the tour starts daily, you can pick any date. If there is a specific start date e.g. Saturday or Sunday only, please choose the day of departure from the list of dates.

Get our latest NEWS and promotions straight to your inbox HERE

Sat 27 Jul - Sat 03 Aug

2-Bed Main Deck. Other cabins available on request. Saturdays.

FROM £1139 P/P

GOT ANY QUEStions?

call 01706 618155 for all bookings and enquiries

We have officially merged Wheel2Wheel Holidays into Freewheel Holidays. If you have been redirected from a search engine result, welcome to Freewheel Holidays!

You’ll still find similar cycling holidays to the product range as previously displayed on Wheel2Wheel Holidays. However, if you cannot see what you are looking for, please contact us.

Question Curve