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.
Day 1: Passau
Boarding time is at 4 p.m. The "Bishop City," close to the Bavarian/Austrian border, is also known as the "City of three Rivers." Use your free time and stroll through the old charming centre, visit the world largest catholic church organ in the cathedral and enjoy the easy atmosphere of a typical Bavarian beer garden. At 6.30 p.m. cast off! Your vacation begins with a boat ride through the romantic Danube Valley.
Day 2: Mauthausen – Grein (Cycling 35 km / 22 miles)
Today's bike tour takes you directly along the Danube where you have enough time to enjoy the natural state of the meadow landscape. Visit the medieval village and former concentration camp at Mauthausen. The Celtic village Mitterkirchen gives you an insight into the past. The alternative route, "Clam Castle," through the beautiful back country of the "Strudengau" is slightly hilly but a fantastic scenery. Grein, with its mighty castle, is the destination of today's stage. After a romantic sunset cruise you arrive in the morning at Devin with its castle ruin overviewing the Danube.
Day 3: Devin – Bratislava (Cycling 43 km / 27 miles)
From Devin you follow the former 'Iron Curtain', cross the former border and reach the imposing Baroque Palace of Hof with its beautifully terraced gardens. Cycle through Austria's 'vegetable garden' to the coronation city and former capital of Hungary Bratislava located at the slopes of the Little Carpathians. Explore the hidden alleyways and sights of Bratislava on an optional city tour.
Day 4: Vienna (day of rest)
During a city tour by bike or bus (optional) you will experience Vienna's most famous examples of architecture: the imperial Hofburg, St. Stephens Cathedral, the gorgeous 'Ring'-boulevard and the State Opera House, the Burgtheater and town hall and, of course, the colourful "Hundertwasserhaus". There is enough time in the afternoon to stroll or visit one of the famous Viennese cafés. The evening can end in numerous ways. For example by visiting a Waltz and Opera concert at a famous Viennese Palaces (optional).
Day 5: Wachau | Krems – Melk (Cycling 37 km / 23 miles)
Today's biking day is a special highlight! Amidst small dreamy towns, apricot trees, vineyards, castles, monasteries and ruins, this hilly landscape enchants everybody. You will be biking on cloud nine! A powerful ruin looms above the small baroque town of Durnstein, while the blue spire of the monastery church is a landmark of Wachau. In Weißenkirchen (possibility for a wine-tasting – optional) you will find comfortable wine taverns right along the bike path.
Day 6: Melk – Grein (Cycling 50 km / 31 miles)
After breakfast you have plenty of time to visit the gorgeous baroque monastery of the Benedictine brethren of Melk. Today's stage is marked by diversity. Starting in the wide valleys of the Nibelungenau you follow the Danube and cycle further into the Strudengau – a narrow point of the Danube which used to be notorious amongst skippers. Yours today's destination is the – already well known – city of Grein, home of Austria's oldest city theatre (optional, not included).
Day 7: Great Danube Loop | Obermühl – Engelhartszell (Cycling 25 km / 16 miles)
Today you will cycle through the Danube Valley and will pass through many picturesque villages. Along the cycle path you may smell freshly grilled mackerels, with small pubs doing all they can to entice cyclists to stay. Make sure you follow the small walking trail to the lookout high above the Danube Loop - what a breathtaking panoramic view of the Danube Valley it provides of the meandering Blue Danube! Need a refreshment? Try some of the special cordials at the Trappist monastery at Engelszell, your day's destination.
Day 8: Passau
Enjoy the first sunbeams and the peaceful silence of the Danube Valley on deck before you arrive relaxed at Passau. Disembarkation approx. 10.00 a.m. We recommend arranging connecting trips from 11.00 a.m. onwards.
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.