SlowUps are a tradition that started in the year 2000 around the lake of Murten as part of the “Human Powered Mobility” project at Expo.02. Several such events now take place in various areas of Switzerland and neighboring countries and are a great way to discover an area without the use or presence of cars! The recipe is simple—take approximately 30 km of relatively flat roads in an attractive area, close them to motorized traffic for the day, and allow participants to discover and enjoy the region and a host of activities in a cheerful, safe, and car-free atmosphere. You can take your bicycle, inline skates, scooter, skateboard, wave board, or wheelchair, or just walk or jog along all or part of the route. Everyone is welcome to join, and participation is completely free! The events take place rain or shine, and nearly half a million people participate each year in one of the 20 slowUps in Switzerland and neighboring areas. Basel hosts a terrific slowUp each fall (this year on Sunday, September 17), but why not enjoy a slowUp in another region and experience it in a safe environment with the whole family.
The Alsatian slowUp, which takes place entirely on French territory, is a day of fun, sports, and delicious delights on the Route des Vins (wine route) and the Véloroute du Vignoble (vineyard bike path) between Sélestat, Châtenois, and Bergheim. You can enjoy cycling, rollerblading, scootering, or walking on any of the 7-, 8-, 11-, 16-, or 19-km loops of a 38-km circuit closed to car traffic. There will also be 13 festive areas and two host villages, Châtenois and Bergheim. It is best to go by public transport, and you can access the route by train: Take the TER to Sélestat (take your bike or roller skates on the train); from Sélestat, follow the bike path to Kintzheim to arrive at the circuit or take the shuttle to the Châtenois host village. Bike rentals are also possible; reserve them in advance as numbers are limited (https://www.slowup-alsace.fr/pensez-a-louer-votre-velo/).
This event is completely free and puts the wine route in focus; in honor of the white wines of Alsace, they ask you to wear something white.