The Rhine Routine // Bacharach, Germany
Back when I was a new blogger I wrote about a solo day trip that I took to the Upper Middle Rhine Valley just after arriving to Germany (Biking the Rhine – June 2013). The amount of effort and planning it took to get myself an hour and half from my front door to this area of the Rhine is laughable. Printed maps, Rick Steves’ Guides, TripAdvisor notes, I didn’t know where I was headed but just knew that it was pretty region that I needed to visit.
Since those confusing days in the summer in 2013 Dan and I have returned countless times to the area with nearly every one of our visitors (sorry the rain stopped us Tara and Jen!). The Upper Middle Rhine Valley is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful regions in all of Germany and UNESCO agrees. Each village feels preserved in time with winding cobbled stone streets, cozy restaurants and incredibly welcoming locals.
Our tradition always starts in the little village of Bacharach where we rent bicycles from Hotel Hillen (12E per person for the day), eat lunch, then proceed down the Rhine on two wheels. Biking along the Rhine en route to St. Goar, we pass castles, sleepy villages and an endless blanket of wine vineyards. After two hours of pedaling and sightseeing arrival in St. Goar is always a treat. On the main street shops and restaurants huddle together with their cross timbers while visitors mill around, drinking wine al fresco. We opt for a table at the beer garden along the riverbank. Instead of biking back, we always board the KD Rhine Ferry (bikes and all) and beeline it to the on-board cafe for more libations. With more vino in hand, we chatter away and enjoy the views from the open top deck. Arriving back at Bacharach and we’re all feeling delightfully happy with the scene. Nothing beats wine, bikes, and villages. Not for me, at least.
After doing The Rhine Routine with our current visitors, Lucas and Lisa, we weren’t surprised when they spent the remainder of the evening raving about the day. Dan and I still get a big kick out of it too even though the process has become an old hat.
To seal the deal on the day, we were delighted to find that a medieval festival coincided with our visit to Bacharach. For a moment I was convinced that these weren’t actors and I was in some freaky time warp. There were SO many people in this parade it was honestly just us cheering them on. Not only that, the costumes were legitimate. Some people were literally parading with ferrets in hand. Somehow I don’t think ferret-handling was a medieval practice but I’ll give them credit for it.
P.S. I recently had an interview with the lovely Laura of Roam & Golightly. Check it out here.