Wesenburg to Berlin days 25 to 30 - 5th to 10th August 2012

The cycle route from Wesenburg to Berlin

It is in yellow, move it around, click on "View Larger Map" and print it:

The Downloads:

Downloads for this route in Garmin Google Earth and .GPX formats

The files are in .zip format. They need to be unzipped and saved to a directory of your choice. You can then load them into the appropriate application and GPS.

The Blog

Wesenburg to Berlin

Day 25, 5th August Wesenberg to near Storkow

The first day of our new week was a grey day and as usual there were very few people about as we rolled out at 9.30. The start of the ride was on the pavements to avoid the picturesque but very uncomfortable cobblestones of Wesenberg.

At first we were on country lanes through the forest with linking and tarmaced cycle tracks. Every so often we came to a very crowded camp or sometimes cabin sites near one of the many lakes.

By late morning we were in Furstenberg when we felt the first drips of rain from the leaden sky. It looked set in for the next few hours. The Copenhagen Berlin route here skirts the site of the Ravensbruck women's death camp and then goes east through some pretty scenery still blighted by what happened here. We decided to go south more directly on a minor road.

Along the way we saw the occasional group of two or three cycle tourists, some like us on their way, others taking shelter in bus shelters or cafes. There was a good deal of camaraderie between us as we went along. It would seem that German cyclists are no more daunted by rain than we are.

After finding an empty bus shelter for lunch we went in search of our pre booked hotel. In order to cut a corner we cycled on a muddy forest track. This delighted the management who liked the idea of an adventure in the rain and on this occasion it was pleasing for both of us that it went through.

After a short stretch of road we were heading down a rather long muddy unmade lane to our hotel. We were in some doubt as to whether we had the waypoint right on the GPS. There were no hotel signs and no large buildings for as far as we could see.

The hotel proved to be a very nice forest restaurant with some up market cabins in the grounds, a clearing in the forest. It was a new venture designed to appeal to busy city people who wanted a very comfortable place to chill out.

We enjoyed our stay and a very nice dinner. And when the rain cleared up in the late afternoon there was a chance to give the tandem and trailer a check over.

Day 26, 6th August Storkow to Birkenwerder

Nanny did a small hiccup as we left our lovely modernist cabin but a slight poking of the cables seemed to fix it. As yesterday was so wet and muddy we wondered whether she was having a little protest against such unfair treatment.

We now had to retrace yesterday's route for 3km, the first km of which was on a rough track through the forest. It may sound romantic to stay in luxury in a forest clearing but we wondered how many rich Germans would put their state of the art Mercedes through it even for absolute peace.

After passing through our first town at Zehnedic we joined the beautifully smooth tarmaced canal tow path going south. The canal is wide like the Sharpness Canal, and able to take the ubiquitous European canal ships. We were lucky with the weather, it was not too hot with little wind.

After we had been on the canal a good long time, long enough to get used to the easy riding and waving to passing boats, we were directed off into the countryside. We rather resented this at first but we had a nice ride through pretty towns and villages and on forest trails.

On this part of the ride we frequently met other cyclists, some with as much gear as us, others out for the day and many just going to the shops. We kept criss crossing with a group which reminded us of our Thursday Folders with friendly banter each time we met.

We joined the canal again at Oranienburg after passing through the sad forests near to the site of the Sachsenhausen concentration camp. Here the inmates were worked to death in the forest while the architects of the whole terrible system lived in luxury with their families.

We were now in a much more heavily populated area, at first cycling beside the lake and then along cycle paths and tidy residential streets to our hotel. This, one of three near the station, was one of those comfortable good value places which appeal to travellers, working and leisure.

Day 27, 7th August Birkenwerder to Berlin

Much to our surprise we had a superb easy ride into Berlin. We expected heavy traffic, congested streets, noise and pollution. We had none of it.

After cycling out of Birkenwerder on the cycle route through quiet residential streets we joined the complex of lakes, rivers and canals. The cycle route goes right into central Berlin hardly on road at all. The signing is not perfect in places and it was useful to have the GPS to keep us on track.

It was just before we got into Berlin that Nanny decided to throw a wobbly. There were some short but extremely steep 14% climbs over waterways and she did not like them at all. To be fair, even 15 years ago we would have been walking, pushing and cursing. Nanny made some very nasty clicking noises and would not drive.

The most likely problem seemed to be broken gears in the electric motor. If that were the case the only possible option in Berlin would be to get a replacement motor. As it turned out this was not possible. But even as we write this we are not sure whether the motor was just too hot and slipping or the wiring had a fault.

The management spent a long time fiddling with the motor and electrics and on the face of it they work. So we made a decision. Unless we can get a replacement by Saturday when we leave Berlin we will go on as we are. We will try not to stress the sick nanny. If this does not work we will send as much gear as possible home and revert to being entirely manual.

So we limped into our apartment for three days of rest, relaxation and tourism.

Days 28 to 30 8th to 10th August Holiday in Berlin

The apartment was a very good choice. It is located just north of the Tiergarten and about 20 minutes walk across the park or beside the river to the Brandenburg Gate, Tor in German. It is on the ground floor of a 1950's block facing onto a leafy park. There is room for the tandem to come inside. The only downside is that it does not have wifi so no UK radio, nor the web to find the best things to do.

We never post very much about our days off but we have included lots of pictures. The guide books do a list of unmissables so here is our list, in no particular order:

  • The Reichstag
  • Brandenburg Gate area for lunch
  • Holocaust Memorial
  • Berlin Wall East Side Gallery
  • TV Tower - VIP visit and dinner
  • Segway guided tour

    Doing the tourist thing is fun but after almost a month travelling we enjoy having our own place for a few days. No need to get up and go downstairs for buffet breakfast. Nice vegi meals came without struggling with the German English dictionary and we also had a full complement of clean clothes, thanks to the caretaker's wife.