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Accommodation In Germany

Posted By: Graham Fitch
Date: 18 October 2007

We first joined the TC in the 1970's but sold our Globetrotter at the start of the 1990's as part exchange for a pony for our son.

We moved to Germany a few years ago and have been doing a fair bit of cycle touring here. It's a country which is really geared for bikes and we have at least a one week tour per year and a good few 4 day long weekend trips. We've hit the "usual" problem of differential touring speeds and have decided that the solution is back to a bike made for two. We loved it then and I'm sure we will again. So, I joined the TC a few days ago for the latest information and thoughts on tandems.

I've now read just about everything on the website - very interesting and helpful - but one thing which did come through from folks that had ridden through Germany was how much trouble you have all had with accommodation.

Like most cycle tourists in Germany, we don't book ahead. We ride until we have had enough and then we "look" for somewhere to stay. However, "looking" doesn't mean riding around in the hope of bumping into a hotel or guesthouse! Just about every bookshop and newsagent in Germany stocks the "Bikeline" and "Bett & Bike" guides.

Bikeline ( http://www.bikeline.de ) supplies spiral bound map books. Okay, the text is in German but who can read that as they are cycling along. The important thing is the cycle path is clearly marked as are all roads, tracks and turnoffs - for those (many) times when the sign posts have been "borrowed" or turned around. There are profiles so that you can see whether you really do need that extra low gear. Better still, at the back of the book, against every village that you will pass through, is a list of accommodation address with their price and, most useful, a telephone number. To get some idea of what the books look like and their contents, on their website click the button "bikeline Radkarten" then "Deutschland". Then click on one of route names (not the atlases). In the main window there will be a set of tabs across the top so that you can get an idea of the maps, route, profiles, accommodation etc.

Bike & Bett supply cyclists accommodation guides. To be in the guide the accommodation must provide lockable cycle stores, tools, a decent breakfast, drying rooms... well, a whole host of things. There is an English button on the website for you to check out if you wish. ( http://www.bettundbike.de/ )

In 5 years of trips we still haven't either booked ahead or had to spend the night in a hedge. All of our accommodation has been superb and truly cycling friendly. The books are less than 10 and pay for themselves in stress relief on their first use.

If anyone needs any further help or information drop me a line on gpfitch@online.de

One last thing. After lots of reading, it looks as though Santana is favourite for our next machine. Strong thoughts, one way or the other, please, to my email address.

Regards
Graham

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