Length 14.7 km (9.1 miles), terrain flat
(Route can be cut shorter as you please)
For more running routes, see Route List.
Friedrichshafen is an interesting place: located on the shore of beautiful Lake of Constance (Bodensee in German), it's a wealthy town with a lot of industry, especially in aerospace and vehicles. The town is proud of its aviation- and automobile pioneers: Count Ferdinand Zeppelin built his airships here, the Dornier aircraft factory created flying boats and their intriguing vertical-takeoff airplanes, Wilhelm Maybach created Germany's most renowned luxury cars. Now Zeppelin sells construction equipment, ex-Dornier builds satellites. Ex-Maybach (MTU) builds huge specialty diesel motors here. ZF (a Zeppelin offshoot) creates the best transmissions in the world.
|The Stadtgarten, looking west towards the palace church|
And the whole 4-kilometer stretch of shoreline east of town is kept pristine as a nature preserve, between the Rotach and the Schussen rivers, providing a wonderful place to run.
The Eriskircher Ried Run
The waterfront Stadtgraben park is a great place to start a run, with the Zeppelin-Haus convention center and the palace to the west, with the rest of the park full of cafès, formal gardens, two marinas, whimsical sculptures, and even a gigantic redwood tree. In the summer, a beach-bar provides caipirinhas for taking-in the stunning backdrop.
|Shore in winter morning ambience|
This run is an out-and-back, heading eastwards along the shore, through the Eriskircher Ried nature preserve. You can run that direction basically as long as you please. But if the 14.7-km mapped here are longer than you want, just turn around any time you like.
NOTE: Obviously, if you are there in the summer, the shore will be much more scenic and much more crowded. I was there in February, and had to run over ice for most of the way, and the beach-bar was, sadly, shut for the season. But the whole shore was wonderfully empty and had its own winter charm.
So, if you're ready to go, turn eastwards and start running along the lakeside, with the water to your right. You'll pass the yacht club marina, then the beach-bar (I have to get back in warm weather and try that out), then a strange, gigantic metallic sculpture out on the gravel beach, and then another little marina harbor before you reach the old town.
|Ferries in the harbor|
Just before you come to the Esso station, turn right to run along the parking lot, continuing to the east. At the far end of the parking lot, the waterfront path begins again, and you can continue away from loud traffic.
|Heading along the shore|
Keep running along the road until you go over the bridge at the Rotach River. Directly after the bridge, turn right onto the dirt footpath towards the water.
NOTE: the Rotach has its own trails along each bank, heading north, which you can also explore as a nice little run.
|In the esturary|
|Turn right onto the paved road here|
|Heading back through the fields|
Several paths connect to the main path from the left or right, but just continue eastwards along the fields.
|Running through the sea-oats|
|View back to Friedrichshafen|