With more than 40,000 miles of cycling routes, Germany’s a great place for exploring by bike any day of the year. But it’s hard to beat an “auto-free” day, when a normally busy highway is shut down to all forms of motorized traffic, and cyclists, skaters and hikers come out in the tens of thousands to enjoy food, drink and endless forms of entertainment along the route.

On May 22 there are two events not far from military communities. The “Happy Mosel” will offer around 50 miles of auto-free road along the Moselle River between Schweich and Reil. The event kicks off officially at 11 a.m. in the town of Leiwen, where live bands play music for all tastes. Other activities in the villages along the route include martial arts demos, an old tractor display, face painting and other activities for the kids. Despite the road’s closure up to 6 p.m.; it’s possible to reach all the towns along the route by car. The event website states that Happy Mosel will be held for the last time ever in 2017, so maybe this is the year to get out and enjoy it? Learn more at (German only).

RheinRadeln offers an 18-mile stretch of auto-free highway through the Rheinhessen wine region between Worms and Oppenheim from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Along the route, bands will play, dance troupes and star chefs will entertain, and plenty of food and local wines will satisfy hunger and thirst. Towns on the route are well serviced by regional trains running between Mainz and Mannheim, and two additional trains are being added to the schedule. See for details (German only).

Can’t make either ride? Consider auto-free days scheduled for later in the season:

• June 12: Tour de Ahrtal, Blankenheim to Altenahr,

• June 19: Natuerlich Mobil, Heilbronn to Mosbach,

• June 26: Tal Total, Koblenz to Bingen and Lahnstein to Ruedesheim;

• Aug. 7: Autofreies Lautertal, Kaiserslautern to Lauterecken,

• Aug. 28: Erlebnistag Deutsche Weinstrasse, German Wine Road between Bockenheim and Schweigen,

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