Biking to Forchheim

6 Sep

Just north of Erlangen, the medieval city of Forchheim marks the beginning of a mountainous region known as the Franconian Switzerland.  You can of course get there by car or by train, but why do that on a beautiful Saturday morning?  Bike paths connect the two cities, which are about 20 kilometers from one another, taking you along the canal through fields and villages.

Subtle Signage Marks The Way

Although in the city, bike paths are clearly marked on the pavement with paint or red bricks, the paths leading out of the city are a little harder to find.  If you are looking for the path to Forchheim when leaving Erlangen, you simply will not find it.  From Erlangen, the trail forks off just before a bridge leading towards Alter Erlangen, and at first sight seems to lead nowhere.  In fact, only Bubenreuth – the closer of two villages you cross on the way – is marked on the sign.  Once you have found your way onto the path, however, some rather subtle white and green (or sometimes white and blue) signage is there to reassure you and point you in the right direction.  Just do not expect to see many signs directly mentioning Forchheim by name until you pass through Baiersdorf.

So you have arrived…and are looking for things to do

Forchheim is really a small town, so once you reach the central historic quarter, you can easily get around.  The big attraction is actually the Christmas Market, during which they turn the town hall into a giant Advent calendar. I will definitely come back and check that out in a few months. The town’s website lists some other local festivals, but nothing special was going on while I was there.  On a normal day, you can always wander through the streets and admire the colorful medieval architecture or stop and relax with a coffee on café terrace.  If you are looking for comfort, I would suggest the café just in front of the Rathaus (city hall).  This is a perfect place to take a break, read a book, and recharge for the ride home.

So all in all this is a bike day-trip worth doing.  No regrets in my case.  Just make sure you take a raincoat and do not count on the weather forecast, as storms seem to pop-up here out of nowhere.

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One Response to “Biking to Forchheim”

  1. Karl September 6, 2010 at 4:26 pm #

    The photos really help to bring this particular blog message to life, and they are very interesting to see. I wish I could come to the Christmas Market in Forcheim. I will hope to see a blog message at this site later this year telling about it, and showing some photos of it.

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