The Thuringian Saaleland
The Thuringian Saaleland straddles both shores of the Saale river, stretching from the Thuringian Forest to the wine-growing region on the Saale and Unstrut rivers. The countryside is shaped by a hilly landscape with wooded mountain ranges and wide, open valleys full of meadows. A series of castles, ruins and palaces is strung together along the Saale.
Leisure cyclists will certainly get their money’s worth on the Saale cycle trail. With just a few climbs, the Old Towns of Rudolstadt, Kahla, Jena and Camburg, as well as the vineyards with their wine taverns starting just north of Jena, this trail is ideal for culinary and cultural discoveries.
220 km of cycle trails are signposted in Thuringian Saaleland. These lead through idyllic tributary valleys of the Saale containing small medieval villages and connect the neighbouring valleys of the Ilm and the White Elster. Climbs are rare on the trail, and the hilly, wooded landscape can easily be explored by bike.
The hunting lodges, castles and beautiful views mean there will be plenty of stopping points. And you can easily put together a round day trip using the available cycle trails.
Thuringian Mill Cycle Trail
The Thuringian Mill Cycle Trail is a 75 km round trip which links more than 25 former watermills. Parts of the Thuringian Mill Cycle Trail run along the Thuringia Town Chain Cycle Trail.
From Jena the cycle trail leads through the Zeitzgrund nature preserve and the Mühltal valley. Today, the mills in these two beautiful valleys house tourist restaurants. At the lower end of the Mühltal the Mill Cycle Trail branches off from the Town Chain Cycle Trail and crosses the historical heart of the royal seat of Eisenberg. Across the wooded plateaus of the Thuringian Holzland region, the Mill Cycle Trail continues to Bürgel, and then through the Gleise Valley past even more mills and back to the Saale. After just a few kilometres on the Saale Cycle Trail you will then be back in Jena.
The Mill Cycle Trail can best be explored over two days.