I rather spontaneously decided to ride into Freiburg today, on the basis that I really should visit the city as I’ve lived just outside for a month. It turns out the city is a lot quicker to cycle into than I thought.

They have trams. With some seriously bright colour schemes:

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It also has lots and lots of cycleways, which are direct, and link up to other cycleways, and hardly ever send you somewhere you think you’re going to get run over. This is a bit confusing because I’ve lived for over ten years by Stuttgart which treats cyclists as pedestrians with wheels, so the cycleways are generally on the pavements and you have to watch the pedestrian lights. Freiburg treats you like a car with pedals so I suddenly have to follow traffic lights.

Once in Freiburg I did the touristy thing.

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The Martinstor is one of the most famous sights in the city, which is why I kept this photo despite it being a bit rough. Apparently the city council compromised with the fast food chain occupying the gate: they were allowed to put their name outside but not in red and yellow…

After pretending to be all cultured:

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…and sampling some more of the cycle infrastructure, including the rather wonderfully named “Wiwili” (pron: Vee-Vil-Eee) bridge which is a “Bike street” connecting the two sides of the city for cyclists and pedestrians…

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I decided I’d experienced all of city life I wanted for a while and headed back north. It really is astonishing how fast you can get somewhere on a bike when there are direct, well signposted cycleways.

Unfortunately, this advantage doesn’t help if you then take a wrong turning and get lost in a random field somewhere…

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Still, I’ve established there is a fairly direct and ridable route into Freiburg. Now all I have to do is make sure I follow it next time…