Highlights: Laufenburg, Bridge of Stein AG, Historic Salt extracting towers outside Rheinfelden (see featured photo), & Rheinfelden
Route 2: Section 8 (Bad Zurzach 341m–Rheinfelden 267m)
Stats from SwitzerlandMobility.ch (https://www.schweizmobil.ch/en/cycling-in-switzerland/routes/route/etappe-01292.html): 54km, height difference Bad Zurzach–Rheinfelden 320m (380m in opposite direction). Their site has the full profile. This section shares its path with Eurovelo 6 & 15.
I’m not a fan of biking in the cold, but the weather is still mild enough to entice me to bike. And since the 2018 season is almost over, I decided to end it (or perhaps not) with an overnight trip. Hence, on a Friday afternoon we traveled 3-4 hours by train to Rheinfelden (Canton Aargau), where we checked-in into a hotel right on the Rhine river (https://www.schweizmobil.ch/en/hiking-in-switzerland/services/places/ort-047.html)
And in the morning, we enjoyed a little stroll in the picturesque old town, before setting off towards Bad Zurzach. Particularly nice in Rheinfelden were the main street and the two old city gates/towers at the eastern side of town.
This whole Section continues along the northern Swiss border with Germany. The area is pretty industrial but the actual path passes mostly along the Rhine river, surrounded by nature and far from unsightly buildings.
Actually, about a third of the trail is unpaved and covered by tree canopies. The entire ride was indeed quite peaceful, almost in constant view of the vigorous river on one side and with agricultural fields on the other.
Stein AG is the next town after Rheinfelden. Here we detoured from the bike path and crossed the Rhine into the German town of Bad Säckingen via the oldest and longest covered wooden bridge in Europe. This was the highlight of the trip.
The old square of Bad Säckingen, with its imposing Abbey of St Fridolin, is very picturesque and worth a visit. The Abbey was initially built around the 6th-7th century and then progressively renovated and enlarged until the current baroque appearance.
Further on, Laufenburg is another old village separated by the river across two countries. It has a charming colorful townscape but the most picturesque view is from the bridge, overlooking the German side of the town. Interestingly, the town was completely dead this Saturday.
Arrived in Koblenz, we did not find any particular landmark. The town sits at the confluence of the Aare and Rhine rivers (the Romans called it Confluentia…). This large body of water separates once again the town into a Swiss and a German part, with an important custom control in between . Koblenz is also the end of Route 8 (Aare Route).
Because of a difficult train schedule from Bad Zurzach, we decided to cut the trip a few km short and take the train back from Koblenz. It was anyway a nice 59km ride. We will visit the remaining part while Riding on 2:07 and 8:07.
Links to Introduction and other Sections: