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Guided hikes and bike tours

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Spring starts and Sportbund Bielefeld (office on August-Bebel-Strasse near Pauluskirche and Kesselbrink, bus 27) offers guided walks,
bicycle tours and hikes in and around Bielefeld starting March 12th.
There are walks every 2nd and 4th Tuesday a month, starting a 2 p.m. until roundabout 4.30 p.m. at costs of 5 Euros (or 45 Euros
for all 10). They start at different tram stops around Bielefeld, the first one starts from “Lohmannshof” tram stop (line 4).
You should bring decent footwear, weatherproof clothes and something to eat or drink.
Page 17 of their  brochure has all the details or see:
Some sunday tours are aimed at families with children (see “Sommerwanderungen”, others focus on the Teutoburger forest and the beginning
“Bärlauch” (wild garlic) season.See their brochure (page 14-25)
You need to register as there are minimum (8-10) and maximum (20-24) numbers of participants.
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Skiing

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For a fun afternoon of skiing (and nothing too fancy) I can recommend the small ski resort at Bruchhausen / Olsberg. It’s only 1 hour 20 mins from Bielefield. It’s very much a family place and has a bunny slope with a pony lift alongside the main run. It’s not the Alps, but a good place for kids learning to ski (and a nice run for the adults). Winterberg is bigger ski resort 20 mins further away (more runs) and worth a visit too.

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There’s Moore to Bielefeld than Meets the Eye

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Last week in our trailing spouses art collective meeting, Patty asked us to create out own personal advertisement for what we liked best about living in Bielefeld to cheer us up over the winter months, (see We HEART Bielefeld ). The idea was, the more over the top the better! So here goes:

 

My niece Madeleine gets an earful

My niece Madeleine gets Moore of an earful

In my opinion, one of the best things to do in Bielefeld is to visit the Henry Moore statue “Oval with Points” in the Sculpture Garden of the Kunsthalle (the main art museum).

First of all, it won’t cost you a cent. You can admire it from afar, circle it slowly, eye it warily, stroke it, hug it and put your head between the points and become part of the sculpture itself. Seriously, there is no limit of the fun to be had with this sculpture. And if you are lucky, you may draw a crowd with your antics.

 

If you live in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, for example, where the Local Council recently sold their Henry Moore statue to the highest bidder to pay off some debt, you are welcome to come here and enjoy our statue. Especially those of you who live in one of the tower blocks on Stifford estate where the statue used to stand; Henry Moore had you in mind, the ordinary folk, when he sold it to the council cut price. Perhaps we can ask the wealthy citizens of Bielefeld if they would cough up the money to pay for your flights over here.

 

Perhaps your local statue has been stolen, and sold for scrap? Like the reclining nude from the Henry Moore estate Hertfordshire worth 3 million, which was melted down for scrap in 2005 for a mere 1,500 pounds.

 

And, if you are from the London Borough of Greenwich where you statue was taken away after a 25-year loan, only to mysteriously appear again during the Olympics, we promise you, our one isn’t going anywhere in a hurry.

 

The Bielefelders are generous by nature and will happily share their Moore  with you.  Perhaps you can find a few locals willing to link arms with you to form a circle of solidarity around the statue.

Come to Bielefeld. Discover Moore. !!!

 

Sparrenburg Castle

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On this blog, we like to highlight things that newcomers might not know about Bielefeld. However, we shouldn’t neglect the obvious! And so, here are some photos from a recent trip to Bielefeld’s biggest attraction: Sparrenburg Castle.

 

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It was very cold but actually sunny, despite the fact that it was February. It’s a beautiful site and even a popular sunbathing spot during the warmer months – I’ve seen crowds of people lying on the grass during a rare warm weekend in October. Despite the temperature, it was a nice time to visit. There were only a few other people there, so it was quiet and empty, making it easier to admire the sheer size of the stone structure (such as in the last photo). Between April and October you can pay a small fee to climb to the top of the tower and take in more of the surrounding area. It’s also home to a medieval festival over the summer.

Sunday Walks

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I first started this post in the autumn when the leaves were changing so this could be a suggestion for a winter walk, or save it for the spring.

We were driving by the Japanese Garden in October and stopped to take a look. It’s a very pretty  spot for some meditative peace and quiet. The idea is you can rest on the benches and admire the garden but you are not allowed to walk in it.

However it is right next to a large hotel and it’s also tiny  (I was expecting something a bit bigger). The location is beautiful though and you have nice views of the wooded hills from the garden behind the hotel pub where you can also get a drink.

We then carried on to one of our favourite Sunday walks, along the  Promenade (following the Hermannsweg) from the Sparrenburg Castle with good views of Bielefeld. Our first stop is the playground, after which look for a small path on the right going down with a sign to Freudental Restaurant. They have good cakes and a pretty biergarten in the summer, with  bobby cars for the kids to ride on. There’s also a small playground right next door.

This is also the start of the meadows – lots of open space with walking paths (where all the dogwalkers seem to end up) and a nice change from walking in the woods.

Happy walking!
Rachel

 

 

Sled Dog Racing in Senne

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Hi Trailing Spouses,

I picked up a brochure while I was out grocery shopping. In a couple of weekends, there will be a sled dog racing event in Senne!

You can check out the official website here. There (hopefully) won’t be any snow, but it seems like the dogs pull vehicles that are on wheels. It looks like they also have a sheep herding competition on Saturday afternoon.

This takes place on October 20th and 21st in Senne. Student tickets are 2€, adults are 4€.  Anyone interested in going?

 

Gosh, I wish I could come herd sheep in Senne! Photo credit: Sam’s mom

 

Get On Your Bike

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Bielefeld has a number of nice cycle routes to choose from.

The weather forecast for tomorrow is hot, hot, hot. What better way then to beat the heat than to feel the breeze on a bike tour along Bielefeld’s network of green cycle routes?

Das Grüne Netz or Green network is basically a 25 kilometre circular route through traffic-calmed roads and green spaces with interesting sights along the way. It is suitable for families and there is the extra bonus that 24 playgrounds just happen to line the route and even a mini-golf course!

If you start off from Ravenberger Strasse, which is on “das Grüne Netz” like our family did last Sunday, and follow the road East you are soon away from the city and cycling along the path of the river Lutter and its three (rather picturesque)  ponds called, rather unimaginatively perhaps, Stauteich I, II, and III.  Before you reach Stauteich III, you will see the mini golf course on the left hand side. Past the ponds the landscape opens up to wide meadows. As you near the Meyer zur Heepen Hof, an 18th century wooden timbered house and mill, you are surrounded by forest.  This cycle ride was about 4 kilometres one way, and our 7 year old can manage it comfortably.

We took a detour from the route to go to Heepen, a little village in Bielefeld to be rewarded for our efforts in a great Italian Ice cream shop there.

It is a good idea to bring a picnic/snacks with you, as cafes on route are few and far between.

There is a leaflet that describes the route in the tourist office, but, unfortunately,  it is only in German/Dutch at present. There is, however, an interactive online map online and an app to download called teuto_navigator , where you can at least see the route.

To be honest, although it is nice to have the map, at least on this stretch of the route, you just have to follow the joggers, Sunday strollers, and other cyclists populating the route. In our experience, there are always enough people around to ask if you get lost.

Bike Hire

I have just seen on the Bielefeld Uni website there is an amazing offer of free bike hire (deposit 50 Euros) for up to a year for international students, scientists and scholars. Has anyone  used this service?

Here is a bike hire service near the main station, recommended by Bielefeld.de.

Does anyone have any other experience of bike hire in Bielefeld?

And by the way, tomorrow (Sun. 9th Sept) is Stadtwerke Run & Roll day in Bielefeld, which is also good news for cyclists. Every year at the beginning of September part  of the motorway is blocked off to traffic for various sporting events and family activities so you can head down there with your inline skates, bikes and trainers etc. Here is map of where the event takes place.

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