Danube Bike Trail: Passau – Vienna – Passau
8 days / 7 nights | Ship: MS Theodor Körner | Easy self guided bike tours
Biking along the German/Austrian Danube is a very special pleasure because the hotel is always with you! Gently downhill, mostly with a helpful tailwind, you are experiencing the impressive river as it meanders in the Donauschlinge ("Great Loop") and enjoying the gorgeous landscape of the legendary Wachau with its castles and fortresses. Then Vienna, rich with architecture, a firework of places of interests! A city, hardly to describe – you have to see and feel it! Sights are easy to reach during a wonderful sightseeing tour by bike. You can also relax at any of the cosy coffee bars or at a typical Viennese wine tavern. After a great day of cycling, relax on board listening live music or discover the port city.
Tourprofile: The cycle route is completely flat, at times on a gentle downhill slope, and is ideal for bikers with less experience and children. The tour is rated Easy and is cycling in mostly flat terrain.
Individual or guided: surcharge for personal attention from a dedicated guide, cycling in a small group, enjoying some delicious appetizers.
Day 1: Passau
Experience Mediterranean flair in Passau, the city of three rivers. You should definitely set aside some time on the day of your arrival for a walk through the picturesque baroque city with its narrow lanes and Passau cathedral home to the largest church organ in the world. Your cycling holiday begins after embarkation (4.00 p.m.) when you sail into the sunset and Passau’s magnificent silhouette with its church towers and domes slowly fades into the horizone behind you.
Day 2: Engelhartzell – Brandstatt (Cycling 45 km / 28 miles)
Breathe in the fragrance of the dense forest and freshly mown meadows. Explore the pristine countryside of the Upper Danube valley on the former towpath as it runs past sleepy villages. Small, rustic inns at the edge of the trail invite you to linger, the aroma of fresh fish grilled according to tradition on a stick wafts through the air. The Schlögener Blick observation point offers a truly stunning view of the Schlögener Schlinge where the Danube carves its way through a gorge and doubles back on itself.
Day 3: Brandstatt – Linz (Cycling 26 km / 16 miles)
Catch some fresh country air again - at lunch time, you’ll reach the Upper Austrian capital of Linz. Discover the European Capital of Culture 2009 on a bright yellow miniature train (optional). The cathedral is the biggest church in Austria, the Pöstlingbergbahn the steepest adhesion railway in the world. Are you curious about the future? At the ARS Electronica Museum you can try out some of the most impressive examples of modern technology for yourself. Make sure you don’t miss it!
Day 4: Mauthausen – Grein (Cycling 35 km / 22 miles)
A beautiful and varied route lies ahead of you as you explore the idyllic hinterland of the Strudengau by bike: the Celtic Village of Mitterkirchen, the Baroque monastery of Baumgartenberg and the romantic ruins of Burg Clam castle. Then it’s time to enjoy the little medieval town of Grein with its Baroque facades, imposing castle and the oldest municipal theatre in Austria. After a romantic journey sailing past towns and villages full of twinkling lights, you arrive - just like Sisi did way back then - in the City of Waltz early in the morning.
Day 5: Vienna (day of rest)
On a city tour of Vienna all the sights are within reach from the saddle of your bike or on the HOP ON HOP OFF bus (optional). The magnificent Ringstraße will remind you of times long past and inviting coffee houses will tempt you with delicious Viennese cakes and pastries, while the Naschmarket market is a feast for all the senses. End the evening on a magical note with a concert of waltz and classical operetta music in Sisi’s summer residence (optional).
Day 6: Wachau Valley roundtrip (Cycling 25–40 km / 16– 25 miles)
An unforgettable day in the picturesque Wachau. Cycle through delightful wine-growing villages surrounded by terraced vineyards and apricot trees. The charming little town of Dürnstein with its narrow lanes is an absolute highlight. In Weißenkirchen – the most important wine-growing village in the World Cultural Heritage Landscape – you can discover the first rate famous Wachau wines.
Day 7: Weißenkirchen – Pöchlarn (Cycling 35 km / 22 miles)
Enjoy this stage of your cycling holiday passing through the wild and romantic scenery along the mighty Danube with its rustic wine-growing villages set amongst the vineyards. In Spitz, situated on the “1000-Eimer Berg”, take the ferry to the sleepy southern bank of the river and after a leisurely ride reach the imposing Benedictine Abbey of Melk, one of the loveliest Baroque ensembles in Europe. Having passed the town of Pöchlarn, which featured in the Nibelungen saga, settle down to enjoy the stunning views of the rugged and romantic Nibelungengau.
Day 8: Passau
Enjoy the first rays of sun and the early morning tranquillity one last time from the deck of the ship before you reach Passau, your heart bursting with memories. Disembarkation: approx. 9 a.m. We recommend that you do not make any arrangements for onward trains departing before 10.30 a.m. To be on the safe side, later departure times would be even better.
Please note: All cycling distances stated above are approximate only. The tour operator and the captain of the ship reserve the right to change the routes and programme due to nautical, technical or other reasons including weather conditions.