Storchenhorst Trommetsheim Kirche, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland Dem Storch auf der Spur, Foto: Hub, Lizenz: TV Fränkisches Seenland Storchenrundblick, Foto: Hub, Lizenz: TV Fränkisches Seenland Am Ufer der Altmühl, Foto: Schaller, Lizenz: TV Fränkisches Seenland Stadtansicht vom Storchenradweg, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland Foto: Bartlomiej Banaszak, Lizenz: Deutsche Bahn AG Foto: pixabay Färberturm Gunzenhausen , Foto: Hub, Lizenz: TV Fränkisches Seenland Kirche St. Michael, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland Storchenhorst Trommetsheim, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland Markgrafenkirche Pfarrhaus mit Storch, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland
Bycicle tour

Meister Radelbar in the Franconian Lake District

Historically Relevant
Interesting Facts
Exhibitions
Culturally Important

On an expedition to explore the storks. This cycle tour takes you along the Altmühl river past many nests in the Franconian Lake District and lets you find out more about the white stork. Let's go!

Start
Gunzenhausen
Duration
6 h
Distance
34 km
Key facts of the tour
There are many myths surrounding the white stork. In many places it is considered a lucky charm, and in many a village its arrival is celebrated every year. After fewer and fewer storks nested in Germany until the 1980s, the population has been increasing again in recent years. Although a quarter of all storks in the world spend the summer in Poland, the middle valley of the Altmühl is also popular with the large birds. A dozen pairs of storks breed here with great regularity.

This accessible cycle tour takes you past many nests in the Franconian Lake District. Along the way, you will learn all sorts of interesting facts about the white stork and important conservation measures for the bird of the year in 1984 and 1994.
A cycle tour for explorers, families and nature lovers

Arrive relaxed and hire bikes from local hire companies. The capacity for taking bikes on the trains is limited and, depending on capacity utilisation, taking your own bike on board cannot be guaranteed.

Start and end station

Start station
Gunzenhausen
6 tour steps
34 km / 6 Stunden
End station
Gunzenhausen

Our tip: Please make sure to check your train connection and the expected capacity before you start your journey.

Schedule

Tour starts on Gunzenhausen

Direction

DB bicycle service Gunzenhausen station

There are 186 bicycle parking spaces in the immediate vicinity of the railway station.

Bahnhofsplatz 3
91710
Gunzenhausen

Foto: Bartlomiej Banaszak, Lizenz: Deutsche Bahn AG

Direction

Take a look at the city map in one of the information display cases on the right-hand side of the station forecourt. This will help you familiarise yourself with the route of the first stage through the town's old town centre, which is well worth seeing.

From Gunzenhausen railway station, it first leads to Bahnhofstraße. Keep left there.

At the second set of traffic lights, the route turns right along Gerberstraße and then curves directly across the town hall and market square.

Then turn left onto the promenade and head towards the first stork's nest on the tour.

If you have not come with your own bike, you can hire one in the town. In this case, we recommend walking the kilometre or so to the first stork's nest.

From there, it is only 200 metres to the Zweirad-Center Gruber bike hire shop on Weißenburger Straße.

At the cycle path signpost at the town hall, you can get an overview of the entire route of the cycle path.

Zweirad Gruber GmbH

Radsport Gruber rents out bicycles, e-bikes, rickshaws and accessories directly on Seestraße at the Altmühlsee - whether for a sporty, ambitious ride or a leisurely excursion.

Weißenburger-Str. 49
91710
Gunzenhausen

Phone: 01706729965
Email Address: info@radsport-gruber.de
01.04. - 30.09.
Monday: 10:00am - 05:30pm
Tuesday: 10:00am - 05:30pm
Wednesday: 10:00am - 05:30pm
Thursday: 10:00am - 05:30pm
Friday: 10:00am - 05:30pm
Saturday: 10:00am - 05:30pm
Sunday: 10:00am - 05:30pm
Foto: pixabay

Direction

You drive back a little way, via the short path to the Altmühl you reach the promenade.

Stork nest on the old malthouse in Gunzenhausen

The old malthouse stands on the promenade above the Altmühl. High up on the chimney of the former malthouse sits the first stork nest in Gunzenhausen. An information board explains details about the life of Master Adebar. With a bit of luck, you can even take a look inside the stork's nest. A webcam transmits its images directly to the nearby "Zum Storchennest" restaurant.

Färberturm Gunzenhausen , Foto: Hub, Lizenz: TV Fränkisches Seenland

Direction

From the Storchenhorst at the former malthouse, follow the "Meister Radelbar" cycle path in a southerly direction until you leave Gunzenhausen.

At the roundabout, go straight on towards Weißenburg and after about 700 metres turn left onto the cycle path to Oberasbach.

There you turn right at a small lake. The road to Oberasbach leads uphill for about 50 metres, but runs relatively straight ahead. In Oberasbach, turn right towards Unterasbach until you reach the church of St. Michael.

Church of St Michael near Oberasbach

The Protestant-Lutheran church of St Michael stands as a landmark exposed above the village of Unterasbach on a hill on the Michelsbuck. From here, there is a wide view over the Altmühl valley.

A legend explains the unusual location of the church, which is remote from the village. It is said that the church was supposed to have been built in the village. However, what had been built during the day always appeared on the heights overnight. According to legend, this hint from God meant that the church was finally completed at the top.

Unterasbach 100
91710
Gunzenhausen

Phone: 09834 266
Kirche St. Michael, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland
Blick ins Altmühltal - Kirche St. Michael, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland

Direction

Well, how many storks have you seen circling so far? Keep your eyes peeled, because as you continue downhill, you will always have a wonderful view of the Franconian Lake District.

At St Michael's Church, follow the signs in an easterly direction. From Dornhausen, you will be drawn southwards like the storks towards the end of summer.

The route continues through open fields to Gundelsheim. Here, the unusual Art Nouveau church of St Bartholomew is not the only thing that invites you to take a short break. The storks on the roof of a private house at the Theilenhofen junction are also worth a detour.

Continue along the local road to Alesheim. From Alesheim, follow the "Meister Radelbar" cycle path.

On well-gravelled field paths through the scenic, wide plain of the Altmühl, you head towards Trommetsheim.

Shortly before the village, you meet the local road again and follow it into the village. In the centre of the village, next to the Raiffeisenbank, the Trommetsheim storks are waiting for you on the chimney of the former dairy.

Stork nest in Trommetsheim

Trommetsheim has been home to storks for a long time. Their nest in the centre of the village has a long tradition. A stork host has adorned the former dairy chimney for decades. And so the birds are certainly grateful to the citizens of the village who were able to prevent the imminent demolition of the chimney years ago and preserve the long-term nesting site.

Hauptstraße/Ecke Kirchstraße
91793
Alesheim 

Storchenhorst Trommetsheim, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland
Storchenhorst Trommetsheim, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland
Storchenhorst Trommetsheim, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland

Direction

If you can tear yourself away from the Storchenhorst in Trommetsheim, look for the sign for the "Meister Radelbar" cycle path (MR3), which you want to follow. Continue right towards the church square.

The route now leads you about 1 km out of Trommetsheim and for a good six kilometres on country lanes and partly on the Tauber-Altmühl cycle path to Windsfeld.

Here the Meister Radelbar cycle path crosses the Altmühl with the Roman road, then (only after) about 700 metres on the Tauber-Altmühl cycle path, but this does not end in Windsfeld, but we follow it to Gunzenhausen.

Once in Windsfeld, cycle straight into the village to pay a short visit to the eyrie on the roof of the "Schwarzer Adler" restaurant.

Shortly after the church, turn left and head out of the village again.

After a few hundred metres, cross the state road and cycle parallel to the railway tracks to Aha, partly on the Tauber-Altmühl cycle path again. Once there, head for the margrave church.

Margrave Church of the Holy Cross

The Margrave Church of the Holy Cross in Aha is a hall church built in 1721 by Carl Friedrich von Zocha according to plans by Gabriel de Gabrieli in the so-called Margrave style. The three-storey church tower by Johann David Steingruber is crowned by a domed helmet with a spire. Its basement is the only remnant of the previous building.

Aha 167
91710
Gunzenhausen 

Markgrafenkirche Pfarrhaus mit Storch, Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland
Markgrafenkirche Zum hl. Kreuz (Ausschnitt), Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland
Markgrafenkirche Zum hl. Kreuz (Ausschnitt), Foto: TV Fränkisches Seenland

Tour ends on Gunzenhausen

Direction

Have you spotted it yet? There is another stork's nest right next door on the vicarage. After the church, turn left and follow the Tauber-Altmühl cycle path back to Gunzenhausen and the starting point.

Have you actually counted? How many storks did you encounter on your tour of the Franconian Lake District today and how many nests did you see?

Tour map

Start/Ende

Gunzenhausen

Bahnhofsplatz 3

91710 Gunzenhausen

More destinations

A bottomless pit, the best-preserved hilltop castle in Franconia and the source of the Altmühl -... From Nuremberg, this cycle tour takes you eastwards past the zoo through the Nuremberg Reichswald... Seven breweries, traditional inns and beer cellars, pretty half-timbered villages, art trails and... If you're looking for adventure, then canyoning in the Starzlach Gorge is just the thing for you!... As free as a bird: Book a tandem flight over the Blomberg and just relax while your experienced... Next stop: speechless! The tour to the beautiful Guggersee lake in Bavaria, which is classed as... Even if you can't sing, the maestro will promise to teach you to "yodel from the heart" in his... The cycle tour takes you through idyllic villages and picturesque pond landscapes to Höchstadt an... A hike through the Grainberg-Kalbenstein-Saupurzel nature reserve on the banks of the River Main.... Experience the idyll of the Quellenreich Regional Park. Here, where numerous streams have their...