Lake Constance

Lake Constance with views of Säntis

Germany, Austria and Switzerland are all on Lake Constance, which consists of three bodies of water: Überlinger See, the Lower Lake and the Upper Lake give Lake Constance its distinct shape. Anyone who has visited Lake Constance will want to come back. The figures alone for this, the third biggest lake, are impressive:

a water surface of 536 km2 and a circumference of 273 km make it the third biggest lake in Central Europe. It is 63 km in length and 14 km wide. The opposite bank often disappears into the horizon. Its deepest place is over 251 m. An impressive figure to consider when you're in one of the white ferry boats crossing the lake.

Lake Constance has another highlight: The Alpenrhein flows into the lake from Austria, and leaves the lake at Constance in the form of the river Rhine. There are three large islands on Lake Constance: the vegetable and monastery island, Reichenau, the island town of Lindau and the flower island of Mainau are three of the very special sights on Lake Constance.

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map of Lake Constance

The Lake Constance Cycle Path

The 273 km circumference of the lake are best explored by bike! The Lake Constance cycle path is one of the most popular routes in the whole of Europe. And justifiably so, as it meets almost all cyclists' expectations. Regardless of whether you want short sections along level routes along the lake banks, or you're more athletically minded and want to spend one or several days going around the entire lake, or fancy exploring the hinterland on a mountain bike - Lake Constance is popular among all cyclists because of its variety. There's lots to explore out there: for example the butterflies on the flower island of Mainau, the quirky monkeys in Salem or the Zeppelin museum in Friedrichshafen - the breaks you take couldn't be more different. But one thing remains the same: all around Lake Constance, the glittering water is never far, beckoning you to jump in for a quick dip!

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The Upper Lake

The Upper Lake is the biggest part of Lake Constance. Germany, Austria and Switzerland share the banks; the longest stretch is in Germany and the shortest in Austria. The Upper Lake is as pretty as a postcard in many places: in Meersburg or Lindau you can saunter through the charming historic quarters with winding streets and timber-framed houses. From the long lakeside promenade in Friedrichshafen, enjoy unique views of the water and the snow-topped peaks of the alps. Above your heads, you might see a soundless Zeppelin fly by, whose history is closely connected to Lake Constance and the town of Friedrichshafen.

Excursion boat on the Upper Lake

Überlinger See

Überlinger See, the upper arm of Lake Constance, between Meersburg, Bodman-Ludwigshafen and Constance has an entirely different character: the Lake Constance banks are steeper and hillier, while over to the west you can see the gentle volcanic craters of the Hegau region. The flower island of Mainau is on Überlinger Lake and the pile dwellings are at Unteruhldingen. While you're there, don't miss a visit to the funny monkeys in Salem!

Bodman-Ludwigshafen at Überlinger See

The Lower Lake

Many cyclists find the Lower Lake the most beautiful part of Lake Constance. The Swiss banks and the Höri peninsular, which once so inspired Hermann Hesse, form a diverse scene-scape, crisscrossed with wonderful cycle paths. With Constance and Stein am Rhein you have two unique towns to the west and east of the Lower Lake. Both towns were not spoiled by the war and present themselves today, intact, with colourfully painted timber-framed houses and small winding streets.

Break from cycling on Reichenau Island, on the Lower Lake