Bodensee Reichenau

Cycle tour from Constance around Reichenau Island

This round tour around the island of Reichenau is a highlight on the bike at Lake Constance! Well signposted, without noticeable slopes, the bike tour leads from the bicycle bridge in Constance around the island of Reichenau and back again. Altogether one cycles thereby ca. 26 km. Since the route is almost exclusively away from busy roads, children have a lot of fun on this bike tour.
On the island there are many places to swim and eat ice cream. Culture lovers get their money's worth in the museums and churches, water rats when swimming and connoisseurs at the sundowner on the campsite Sandseele – a favorite place for a break on the bike tour around the island of Reichenau.

Bicycle bridge in Constance
Arrival and start of the tour

The round trip starts at the Fahrradbrücke (Bicycle Bridge) in Constance. This is the middle one of the three bridges in Constance. It is reserved for pedestrians and cyclists alone and is part of the Lake Constance cycle path. It can be easily reached from the harbor, train station and the ferry dock on Constance's network of bike paths.
If you arrive by car, it is best to park at the Park & Ride car park on the Seerhein. Bike signposts lead from the parking lot to the Lake Constance bike path and the island of Reichenau.

Symbol bike round island Reichenau
Directions and route

The route to the island leads along the Lake Constance Cycle Path to Reichenau train station and is well signposted. Since it leads along the railroad tracks, you can hardly get lost. At the station, the cycle path to Reichenau leads to the left. Via the Inseldamm with its famous avenue of poplars, you reach the island, which has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2000.

On the island you follow the Reichenauer Radrundweg, which is signposted in both directions. The signposts consist mostly of a bike symbol and arrows directly on the road and are visible at almost all intersections. That's why this bike tour is really easy to find even for bike tourists and other non-local cyclists.

Bike tour from Constance around the island of Reichenau

Gnadensee in front of Reichenau Island

The weather forecast was great for my bike tour around the island of Reichenau, and indeed I was not disappointed!
While on the island dam next to me the cars in the traffic jam only slowly move forward, I enjoy on the bike one of the most beautiful views of the Untersee. The Untersee is the lower arm of Lake Constance and for me the most beautiful part of the lake. It lies between the Swiss canton of Thurgau and the volcanic cones of the Hegau. Especially in the evening hours, it creates a wonderful backdrop for bike tours with unique sunsets.

To admit, the bike path to Reichenau is not very spectacular, but really easy to find. The Lake Constance Cycle Path leads along the railroad tracks out of Konstanz. The advantage of this way is that one drives away from the cars, often stuck in traffic jams in this area.
At Reichenau station, which is still on the mainland, the Lake Constance cycle path splits. The arrow to the right leads cyclists via Allensbach to Radolfzell. I follow the other arrow to the left to the island.

Poplar avenue to Reichenau Island

Soon I am on the artificially filled up island embankment and under the famous poplar avenue! This is staged in almost all TV appearances of Constance, not least in the Constance Tatort. Few know, however, that it marks the southern starting point of the Deutsche Alleenstraße. After three kilometers of pleasantly brisk driving, I pass the statue of St. Pirmin and find myself on the island of Reichenau, the largest island in Lake Constance.
I drive counterclockwise today, so the lake is always on my right side.

Saint George, Reichenau Island

The island is known today mainly as a fruit and vegetable island. Due to the particularly mild climate in the middle of the lake, it supplies almost all of southern Germany with fresh vegetables. This is especially noticeable in the numerous fields that cover the island like a patchwork quilt. And by the many vegetable stands where you can buy fruit and vegetables almost directly from the field. It was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List because of its monastic past. The small island was once one of the intellectual centers of Europe. The three churches bear witness to this past: Saint George, the Minster and Saint Peter and Paul.
The arrows of the bike circuit bring me first to the Catholic Church of Saint George. Highly praised are the murals inside.

Lower lake in front of camping Sandseele

Today I am tempted by another destination:
The island camping Sandseele at the other end of the Reichenau. The associated restaurant attracts many visitors, because it is fantastically located! A wonderful view opens up here: Lake Constance in front of the volcanic cones of Hegau and the green hills on the Swiss shore around Untersee. For the famous sunset, however, I am a few hours too early.
The sundowner bike ride to the Sandseele is unreservedly recommendable!
The way to the Sandseele is not only worthwhile for the view – there is a bathing beach, a playground for children and delicious food in the restaurant

View from camping Sandseele, island Reichenau

Next stop on the bike tour is the Reichenau ship dock. The Lake Constance ships take cyclists and pedestrians to Constance, Gaienhofen on the Höri, to the Rhine Falls in Schaffhausen or to the opposite side of the lake, to the Swiss Mannenbach.
I continue on my way on the bike tour of the island of Reichenau and continue to follow the symbols painted directly on the road. They are really hard to miss. This makes cycling really fun! It is already not far to the island dam. After I have said goodbye to the island of Reichenau and St. Pirmin, I cycle on the Lake Constance cycle path back towards Constance.

Reichenau Island jetty

For those who don't feel like cycling the same way from Constance to Reichenau Island and back, you can cross from the Reichenau jetty to the other shore in Swiss Mannenbach. Bicycles can be easily taken along with a bike ticket.
The signs of the Lake Constance Cycle Path lead from there along the Swiss shore back to Constance. From Mannenbach to Constance it is about 10 km on the bike path.

Timetable and prices: