Here you will encounter stories of great saints, impressive church buildings and beautiful river landscapes. If you go on this 65-kilometre cycle tour in the south-east of Münsterland between Lippetal and Wadersloh , you can discover a lot and experience history up close. The tour takes you into the countryside and across the border of Münsterland into the district of Soest.
You start your tour with a highlight: before you get on your bike, the Liesborn Abbey Museum awaits you. Liesborn Abbey Museum is waiting to be explored. In the baroque abbey residence of the former Benedictine abbey in Liesborn, the first saints already play a major role:
Saint Roswindis/ Roswitha von Liesborn
As the first abbess, Roswindis, also called Roswitha, went down in the chronicles of the monastery as a historical figure. The stories surrounding her are even more legendary: as an unknown sister of Charlemagne, she was personally appointed by him - immediately after he founded the monastery - as the first abbess and confidant of his empire in Liesborn. According to the monastery chronicle, her grave is under the tower of the abbey church, which the penultimate abbess Oderatis had built around 1100.
SS. Cosmas and Damian and the lower arm of St. Simeon
The former monastery church has a double patronage. The two patron saints of doctors and pharmacists - Cosmas and Damian - are found in the church's reliquary. But the most unusual piece awaits under the altar: surrounded by a golden shrine, an arm relic of St. Simeon is kept here. Saint Simeon held Christ in his arms as a newborn and immediately sensed the significance that lay on the child. How the monastery came by such a valuable relic still fires the imagination today. Today, the stone Simeon in front of the church points to the valuable church treasure (original in the museum).
Now get on your bike! From Liesborn you start into the Münsterland farming communities in the direction of Lippe Valley. Extensive meadows and fields as well as numerous meadows, fields and farms line the path. On the Herringerfeld road you come to a newly designed refuge where you can take a leisurely break. The trail continues along the meadow and field landscape to beautiful Herzfeld. This small community is also known beyond the region for its special patron saint, St. Ida.
The next stop on your tour takes you to an impressive building of the Lippe Renaissance: Hovestadt Castle. To get there, you cross the river Lippe on your bike, the "natural border of Münsterland". Idyllically situated on the Lippe, it offers a particularly beautiful photo motif. Hovestadt Castle dates back to a knight's seat first mentioned in the 12th century. Since the 18th century, the Plettenbergs have lived in the family estate, which is steeped in tradition, and have now opened the well-tended park to the public. The family takes care of most of the grounds themselves.
Guests are welcome, but beware: Please do not cross the second bridge of the two-island complex. Here it can happen that uninvited guests are "caught" by an automatic locking mechanism on the private property.
After a short stop at Brachum's magnificent building, you cycle along the green spaces of the castle through the Lippe valley. Pass the Jewish cemetery (Postweg, Schoneberg Jewish Cemetery). Along the way, you can take a break for coffee and cake at the country cafe Gut Humbrechting, idyllically located near the Ahse river. If you prefer something heartier, you can cycle on to the next farming community, Brockhausen, to the restaurant "Zum Dorfkrug".
On the saddle again, this bike tour takes you in the direction of Oestinghausen. On the way, you cycle through green fields and meadows, fed by small rivers. In Oestinghausen you will discover the Romanesque Town Church of St. Stephen from the 13th century. The oldest building in the Lippe Valley is under the patronage of St. Stephen. He is said to have been the first Christian to die for his faith around 40 AD. Even today, there is a tradition in Münsterland of "St. Stephen's Stoning" on Boxing Day. People meet friends in a pub with a stone in their pocket. If you are caught without a stone, you have to pay for a local round.
Then you drive through the Nature Reserve Ahsewiesen. On the right-hand side of the road you will see an obvious outlook tower. It is worth stopping for the view! After the break, the route continues towards Hultrop and, appropriately enough, to a saint who knows a lot about towers: St. Barbara.
The St Barbara is a modern church, but with original baroque furnishings. St Barbara can be seen on the altarpiece. She was beheaded by her own father because she would not renounce the Christian faith. The saint is one of the 14 helpers in need and is considered the patron saint of towers and fortresses: not entirely unimportant in Münsterland with its many churches, castles and fortresses. Her day of remembrance is 4 December.
The Quabbe flows leisurely through the village of Lippborg and out of town through the green meadows to the Quabbe mill. Thanks to renaturation, the river, together with the Glenne and the Liese, is now in good condition, even though the water level is affected by the warm summers. The route continues through the woods to a castle hidden among the trees in Lippe Valley . Turning onto Assenweg, you reach the main entrance to Assen Castle.
You can see every inch of the castle's history. Stylistically dominated by the Lippe Renaissance, the moated castle is one of the most beautiful Renaissance castles in Münsterland and Lippe Valley. Until 2016, the Order ran a boarding school for boys at the moated castle. Today, Assen Castle is a spiritual centre with a varied (Christian) calendar of events.
As the house is not always open or can be visited on request as part of a guided tour, it is worth taking a short break at the lookout point. This is guarded by Anna Selbdritt. Around 1880, Saint Anne was the protector of women and mothers and the guarantor of a happy marriage. She is invoked in cases of unfulfilled desire to have children and is also the patron saint of widows, housewives and workers.
After the rest in Assen, continue cycling in the shade of the trees back towards Herzfeld. Here you will once again come across a refuge. In the direction of Diestedde , you can enjoy the cultivated meadows and fields until you reach the district. A highlight of the small village is Crassenstein Castle. On the way there, you will pass the Geological Garden with its earth clock, which illustrates the history of the formation of the earth in the educational garden.
Today,Crassenstein Castle has a classicist appearance; not much is visible of the 14th century feudal castle or the Renaissance castle with four pavilion towers. It is assumed that the former builder, the Burgrave of Stromberg, wanted to protect his possessions in Diestedde and the Liesborn monastery by building the castle. Today the castle is used as a public school and boarding school.
The old mill at the castle
The old mill is located near the castle. In the immediate vicinity is also the "Femeeiche", a place of jurisdiction, about which there is a short radio play . Here the 900-year-old oak tree tells its story. In eleven minutes you get a special insight into the history of the village, the castle and also the mill.
The circular tour "Holy Traces" follows the network of nodes. Simply download the map from the download bar below or follow the junctions from Wadersloh Liesborn: 31, 87, 52, 9, 10, 12, 11, 8, 7, 2, 6, 23, 35, 80, 46, 63, 79, 31.
If you prefer to travel by e-bike, you can rent a bike from Hotel Karger. Alternatively, the starting point of your bike tour could be here. The nearest charging station is located in the car park at Cafe Twin (Lippborger Str. 6, 59510 Lippetal) and offers lockable compartments, each with two sockets and USB ports for charging bicycle batteries, smartphones and cameras. The costs of these "electricity filling stations" are borne by the municipality of Lippetal.