Inspiration: Big Trip

Route guide: Sachsenring

Relaxed German riding

One of the slower tracks on the Moto2 race circuit Peter-Jan Willems, from Motorcycle Diaries, suggests a more relaxed local route to get a flavour of the Sachsenring.

Built to satisfy the racing impulses of the Chemnitz residents, who might otherwise take to the packed streets of their town, it’s one of the shortest routes on the circuits. However, Peter-Jan suggests that riders take a two-day excursion away from the hustle and bustle and into the region’s beautiful countryside to get a real sense of the track’s character.

“This route will take bikers through some of the most beautiful national parks in Europe. Although it’s 953km, so much, much longer than the 4km Sachsenring route, the ride will give you a real sense of the roads and culture that make the people here real petrol heads,” he said.

Uncover history

Starting at the Sachsenring track, the route takes riders north and on to Motorway 4 around the outskirts of Chemnitz and Dresden, both of which still bear the remnants of East German architecture and history from before reunification.

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Peter-Jan said: “Chemnitz is a relatively new city because there was a lot of investment in the nineties after the wall came down. In some areas you can still see parts of East Germany in the buildings. There’s plenty of history in Dresden too.”

As well as enjoying the sites of Neumarkt Square and the Royal Palace, riders can stop off in Dresden and enjoy a touch of opera in the city’s famous venue, or perhaps go and check out the local wildlife at the zoo.

Skirt the border

“As riders start to make the loop back south, they’ll come to the Saxon Switzerland National Park, a truly amazing place.” Taking a detour from heading south on road 98, Peter-Jan recommends skirting the edge of the Park, which sits on the border between Germany and the Czech Republic.

“It’s a great place to stop and get some fresh air, or even stop for the night. There’s 93km worth of park to check out, plenty of mountains to climb and even cycle routes if you fancy getting out on to a different set of wheels.”

Out through the forest

As riders start to follow the road back west, the roads start to stretch out across vast countryside and through deep forests, giving you the chance to open up your bike a little and try out some sweeping corners. “The roads might not give you the impression of the tight corners of the Sachsenring, but you’ll get to see some amazing Saxon countryside, which is the whole point of this route.”

Head to the market

As the road heads back north and east, riders will pass through the city of Coburg. Here you can enjoy some more amazing historical buildings, and maybe treat yourself to a quick coffee break and a snack.

“The marketplace in Coburg is a must-stop. It’s a typical Bavarian old town with lots of outdoor cafes and shops to have a wander round. At Christmas, it’s amazing to go and see the lights and maybe pick up a decoration for your tree.”

Take in some nature

“Finally, as you climb back north towards the race track, you’ll enter vast countryside again as you reach the Thuringian Forest Nature Park.” At 830 sq km, the park contains five different types of landscapes, including forests and nature reserves, and is home to a range of wildlife.

“There are places to hike and stay in the park. So if you fancy getting away from the road for a couple of days before heading back to the track, it’s a perfect option.”

A beautiful country cruise, this area of Germany has so many tucked away gems, you’re sure to stumble across plenty of great roads and places to stop on the way.