Koblenz – Nassau and the Lahn River

James and I decided to do a train-assisted cycle ride today to have a bit of variety and go a bit further. Having enjoyed our brief look up the Lahn river the other day we decided to take ourselves by train a fair way up the river and ride back. I looked at the map and saw Bad Ems was a possible destination but when I saw that a town 10km further up was called Nassau I thought it worth going there – I doubt I shall ever be taken to the Bahamas!

So we checked the train timetables and cycled to Koblenz Hauptbahnhof to catch our train.

We had two train options per hour, within five minutes of each other. The five-past-the-hour train was the fast train at 22 minutes to Nassau but was the sort of train that can sometimes have narrow doors. The next train was a local train which would take 33 minutes for the trip but would probably have wider doors.

So we stood on the platform for the first train and indeed it had narrow doors, so we walked a short distance to the other platform and hopped on the Vectis train. The conductor appeared and asked me to fold my trike as there would be other bikes getting on but I stowed it unfolded and there was plenty of room.

The train wound its way up the Lahn valley and we caught occasional glimpses of the cycle path, as well as some of the villages we would be passing back through. In due course we arrived at Nassau.

This is our train disappearing into the distance.

Oh look, another castle!

The scenery in this narrow valley was very attractive and the weather was much better than the forecast. We were expecting rain but we had a largely blue sky, although it was pretty windy (the wind whistles up the valley, I think).

The cycle path was of very good quality and we didn’t see very many other cyclists, although we were overtaken by a woman on an ancient folder shopper bike, which was a bit embarrassing. We also saw a pair of recumbent tricyclists; the second trike was a Trice T, but the owners didn’t stop to talk to me which was a surprise (I had stopped to say hello to them).

Here I am pootling along. The great thing about going down a fairly steep river valley is that you get a lot of downhills!


The first village we came to after Nassau was Dausenau which had a rather impressive hydroelectric plant.

Here is James demonstrating where the stick man in the plaque above was indicating (Ihr Standort)

The noise from this rushing water was incredibly loud

Looking up thee valley from the sluice – still, calm waters…

A raging torrent below the sluice

Here is James using the kindly-provided vantage point to get a good view of everything.

We soon arrived in Bad Ems which was a lovely spa town, somewhere it would be good to visit again when we had more time. There was a wide bridge just for pedestrians/bicycles.

We locked our bikes up to the railings alongside the river. This is probably not allowed as it looks messy but no-one told us off!

The sun shining on this minaret was wonderful.

My lunch – a pancake with fruit and cream

James said he fancied a Wurst. It wasn’t on the menu at all but the chap happily provided Wurst with Brot at our request and only charged 2 Euros 50 for it.

After our lunch we headed off through the main spa bit of Bad Ems and almost immediately came across a reminder of home!




This sticker on the phone box explains it. “This telephone box is a gift from the English twin town Droitwich Spa to the community of Bad Ems at the founding of the partnership on 23 October 1983.”

And inside was a functional phone – although a Deutsche Telekom one, not BT.

A warning not to post letters in this letterbox but to use one round the corner for your post!

We continued on, approaching the minaret we had seen which turned out to be a beautiful church.

This fountain was in the middle of the river in front of the church.

We continued on out of Bad Ems and saw lots of new building around the town, including these flats that looked like flights of stairs!


Here the sailor finds a boat – one that’s not sailing anywhere in the near future – not with metal sails anyway!

A bit further down the river we came across an old hut where there was a lock (at Friedrichssegen) which seemed to be of some historical significance – they had painted a mural of it on another building.

This is looking back at the tranquil scene.

We really liked the play of sunlight on the water and stopped to take a photo – during which a cloud of dust from the nearby cement works drifted across the river like a mist.

More Lahntal scenery.

Looking ahead to the next meander.


This is the view from Friedland across to the monastery at Allerheiligen Berg.

More river.

Burg Lahneck.

A view of the Fernmeldeturm on the Kühkopf (cool name!) hill.

We didn’t spot this ship appearing out of a garage the last time we cycled through Lahnstein!

Burg Lahneck in the late afternoon sunshine.

We turned the corner onto the Rhein again and started our ride back to Koblenz. The light was a bit better for photographs but we still struggled to get a decent picture of Schloss Stolzenfels.

So we consoled ourselves with some coffee and cake after stopping at the Rheinterasse.


I had an apple and almond Streusel.

James had an apple lattice pie thing.

Another view of the aerial with the Koblenzer brewery below it.

A signpost along the way – we had come from Bad Ems/Lahnstein and were on our way to KO-Zentrum and Pfaffendorf.


Here am I in Pfaffendorf.

With those annoying steps again!

Still, I made it to the top!
Looking down the Rhein towards Lahnstein.

We stopped off at the supermarket on the way home as we’d run out of cereal and some other supplies. The rack on Alfie is eminently suitable for cornflakes!

It became apparent during today’s ride that the bumping of my back wheel had got worse. James noticed just before we reached our apartment that there is now a visible bulge in the tyre. Further investigations show that the problem with my trike is the tyre rather than the rim so that’s good news (I have a replacement tyre at home and it was due a change anyway), but it looks like I ought not to ride tomorrow in case it goes pop!

Statistics For Today:
Distance travelled: 23.18 miles
Moving time: 2 hours 51 minutes
Average speed: 8.1mph
Maximum speed: 21.8mph

It is worth noting that we left the apartment at 10:20am and by 2:30pm had covered 14 miles by bike. That’s my kind of cycle ride – loads of stops for photographs, to examine scenery, eat cakes and more!

One comment

  1. In 1869, from July to September, William Morris – and especially his wife Janey – “took the waters” at Bad Ems. This led to jokes by Rossetti and Burne-Jones about – wait for it – “The Ms at Ems”!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Translate »