27-29/7/16. We spent the last three days close to the coast before turning inland to Lübeck from where we will head towards Hamburg and the North Sea coast. It has been a very pleasant ride but rather unremarkable.
There have been lovely views of the Baltic looking very blue, at least when the sun has been shining, and a mixture of woodlands and more open country. The hilly sections have increased in frequency, although it has to be said that they are at the less strenuous end of the scale thankfully!
The weather has been somewhat mixed with rain most nights but only the occasional light shower during the day and the clouds have generally been burnt off/blown away by the afternoon to leave temperatures comfortably warm.
As we headed west the towns and villages looked increasingly prosperous with many new or refurbished houses, mostly in keeping with the older buildings although there were one or two eyesores. Many of the places were out and out holiday resorts with accommodation and attractions for tourists including many campsites. However, these were all very busy and generally more like holiday parks aimed at families staying for a week or more with “attractions” such as live music, shows and gift shops rather than catering for cheapskate cycle tourists simply looking for a place to pass the night.
At Warnemünde, the port for Rostock, we took a short ferry ride across the river to arrive in a town buzzing with passengers from two cruise ships. We had hoped to use the wifi at the tourist information office but found it next to impissible to get online because there were so many other people there before us. Most of them looked like the crews from the ships which would accord with what happened on our cruise from Sydney to Singapore.
Several of the the towns had olde worlde centres being former members of the Hanseatic League, which made us realise how wealthy this area was in the Middle Ages.
We reached the former border between the two Germanies just before Travemünde, which is at the mouth of the river that flows through Lübeck and this was marked by an interesting information board which told how East Germany attempted to stop people escaping to the West in the area and had a picture of the celebrations when the Wall came down in 1989.
On the way into Lübeck the cycle route signs showed we were approaching the Herrentunnel where the road we were travelling beside went under the river. We wondered how the German approach to getting cyclists through a tunnel would differ to that in Japan (which varied from the unpleasant to the downright terrifying!). We needn’t have worried! The route went into a small bus station where there was a bus which had been adapted to take 15-20 bikes. We piled on with half a dozen others and were whisked through the tunnel in comfort and safety. Lovely!
The campsite in Lübeck was on the far side of the city so we passed quickly through the old town which is located on an island in the middle of the Trave river as we can look around while spending three nights here before going to Hamburg to fly home for a few days.