Danube Experience Bike and Boat Passau-Vienna-Budapest-Belgrade-Iron Gates-Passau

4.9/5 (8)
14 nights
24 miles/day
Self guided from EUR € 2349
Rider Level: Recreational Electric bike tours Primarily bike paths Bike and boat tours

Danube Experience Bike and Boat Passau-Vienna-Budapest-Belgrade-Iron Gates-Passau

4.9/5 (8)

Rider Level: Recreational Electric bike tours Primarily bike paths Bike and boat tours

14 nights
24 miles/day

Self guided from EUR € 2349
Bike and Boat Tour aboard Swiss Crown
Countries: Austria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Serbia and Slovakia

Tap above to jump to different sections of this tour

  • Discover captivating capitals and the best treasures along the Danube's breathtaking banks

    Embark on an adventure-packed bike and boat tour through six countries, where widely differing cultures reveal the beauty of the majestic Danube River in all its glory.

    Discover the breathtaking natural scenery of the Iron Gates, one of the most spectacular gorges in Europe, the vast expanse of the Pannonian plains, the Danube Bend, and the breadbaskets of Croatia and Serbia. Glide through idyllic wine-growing regions and past commanding fortresses high above the river. Visit Belgrade, the 'White City'; fall in love with bewitching Budapest, the 'Paris of the East'; marvel at the Baroque palaces in picturesque Bratislava, and let yourself be charmed by the elegance of Vienna, the 'City of the Waltz'.

    Scenic and cultural highlights, excellent food, and a crew that caters to your every whim guarantee that your cycling holiday will be a unique and unforgettable experience.

    Don't feel like cycling some days? You are able to stay on the boat for a given stage. A guided option is available and requires a mininimum of 10 people (maximum 18 people). The minimum has to be reached 4 weeks prior arrival.

    Minimum 90 participants.

    • Riesling wines! Sandra Grunewald@Unsplash
    • Matthias Church, Budapest, Hungary. Florian Van Duyn@Unsplash
    • The famous Hundertwasserhaus in Vienna, Austria. CC:Bwag
    • Wachau Valley near Dürnstein, Lower Austria. CC:Lonezor
    • Schnitzel is a favorite here! Mark Konig@Unsplash
    • Bratislava, Slovakia. CC:Hlavne Namestie
    • Chain Bridge, Budapest, Hungary. Dan Freeman@Unsplash
    • Sacher Torta at Hotel Sacher in Vienna, Austria. Michela Simoncini@Flickr

    View more photos

    Highlights

    • Four capital cities along the Danube River: Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest & Belgrade
    • Mighty canyons in the Iron Gates National Park
    • Kalocsa, the 'Paprika Capital'
    • Commanding citadel at Petrovaradin
    • Novi Sad, magnificent capital of the Vojvodina
    • Basilica in Esztergom
    • Drava-Nemzeti National Park
    • Danube Bend
    • The fabulous Wachau region with its vineyards and castles

    Learn More

    Learn more about self-guided tours.

    Interested in adding to your itinerary? Take a look at our cycling day tours in Munich, Vienna, and Budapest.


    Danube Experience

    Photos 

  • Traveler photos

    • Countryside in Hungary (photo by Estee Beard)
    • Ready to Ride! (photo by Estee Beard)
    • Beautiful Vienna (photo by Estee Beard)
    • Largest Pipe Organ Ever! (photo by Estee Beard)

    Danube Experience

     Tour Description Daily Program 

  • Daily program

    Day 1: Arrival in Passau
    Embarkation by 4:00 pm in Passau; departure is at 5:00 pm. Enjoy a final view of the beautiful city of Passau as you glide serenely into the sunset, past dark green forests, before entering the lock on the border between Germany and Austria.

    Day 2: Schlögen Danube Bend 'Great Loop' | Engelhartszell – Aschach (26 miles/42 km)
    Your first day’s tour begins with a ride through the sublime scenery of the 'Great Loop' of Donauschlinge, one of the most beautiful sections of the Danube. Along the way, you'll encounter tiny villages and cozy cider taverns. In Engelhartszell, home to Austria’s only Trappist monastery, you can taste their delicious liquors and cheese. The famous 'Schlogener View' provides a wonderful panorama of the surrounding Austrian countryside. The boat welcomes all cyclists back on board in the charming market town of Aschach.

    Day 3: Devin – Bratislava (9-27 miles/15-43 km)
    A narrow cycle path runs along the Iron Curtain from the castle ruins in Devin to the splendid palace of Schloss Hof, which boasts one of the most magnificent baroque gardens in Europe. After a stretch of untouched countryside, you'll arrive in the vibrant city of Bratislava. The miniature train tour (optional) of the Slovakian capital in which Hungarian kings were once crowned begins with a glorious view from the fortress, perched on a hill overlooking the city, and ends with a walk through the historic city center.

    Day 4: Budapest | Excursion to Szentendre (17-34 miles/27-54 km, or day of rest)
    Savor the entrance to Budapest and the stunning views of its most famous buildings. Discover the city that straddles the Danube on a guided tour (optional) or take a detour to the delightful little town of Szentendre with its many artists and galleries. Get a taste of the fiery Hungarian temperament at a Hungarian folklore show with traditional music and folk dance accompanied by wine and local food (optional).

    Day 5: Baja – Mohacs (23 miles/37 km)
    From the quiet Baroque town of Baja, famous for its fish soup, you’ll cycle along the flood protection dykes in the Gemenc floodplain, through sleepy river landscapes, and past fields of sunflowers. At the end of today’s stage, you'll take the ferry to the little town of Mohacs, Hungary’s southernmost town on the Danube and famously the site of two battles with the Turks.

    Day 6: Belgrade (day of rest)
    Explore the fun-loving Serbian capital at the confluence of the Sava and the Danube by bike or bus. Take a journey through time from the past to the present and learn about the rise and fall of Yugoslavia (optional). In the evening, Belgrade is bathed in a sea of warm light. Visit a colorful folklore show with traditional dances from all parts of the country, followed by typical regional specialties in the well-known Bohemian district of Skadarlija, with lively folk music from a Serbian band (optional).

    Day 7: Cataract Canyons / Iron Gates National Park (day of rest)
    Experience the stunning fjord-like landscape at close quarters from the ship’s deck. The river cuts through the Romanian Carpathian mountains and the mighty foothills of the Balkan mountain range. A spectacular landscape with steep gorges, dark forests with historic monuments, and impregnable fortresses reflected in the blue waters of the river await you. This miracle of nature will take your breath away!

    Day 8: Novi Sad – Ilok (30 miles/48 km)
    The imposing Petrovaradin fortress perches high above the provincial capital of the Vojvodina. After cycling upstream along a flat cycle path, you'll take a ferry to reach the gentle foothills of the Fruska Gora with its orchards, vineyards, and idyllic farming villages. Everything in the medieval town of Ilok is about wine. In the evening, you will have the opportunity to sample some famous Croatian wines at a local wine cellar (optional).

    Day 9: Batina – Mohacs (26 miles/42 km)
    In the border triangle, you'll cycle through the never-ending 'Backa'. Small, idyllic villages and endless canola fields accompany you from Croatia to Serbia to Hungary. Farmers stop their work to greet you, and now and then you will meet a carriage. You will experience untouched nature in the Nemzeti National Park, and after the ferry ride to Mohacs, there is enough time for a visit to the White Stork Museum or the Memorial of the Battle of Mohacs.

    Day 10: Kalocsa – Solt (31 miles/50 km)
    Kalocsa is the 'Paprika Capital' of Hungary and the character of the town is strongly influenced by colorful houses with hand-painted, bright floral patterns, as well as the cathedral with its towers that pierce the sky from the flat Hungarian plains. Visiting the Paprika Museum, you’ll learn a lot about Hungary’s favorite spice. Continue your journey on the well-built cycle path along the flood protection dyke through the vast expanse of the Puszta. You will cycle through fields and orchards that stretch as far as the eye can see until you reach Solt, the birthplace of the famous conductor Sir George Solti. Vecsey Castle and the library with some 34,000 books are especially worth seeing.

    Day 11: Danube Bend – Esztergom (27 miles/43 km)
    The Danube is framed by steep wooded hills as it flows through the picturesque landscape of the 'Hungarian Wachau'. Set in the middle of the Danube, the delightful island of Szentendre radiates real Puszta romance. As you continue your journey on idyllic cycle paths through picturesque villages you’ll be able to experience the Hungarian zest for life at first hand. The dome of the imposing basilica in Esztergom can be seen from afar. Hungary’s largest church, with its Tuscan-style high altar and a side chapel with red marble walls, is especially worth seeing.

    Day 12: Vienna (Bike excursion to Klosterneuburg, Danube Island)
    After so many action-packed days of cycling, you deserve some relaxation! Enjoy the breathtaking view of the idyllic floodplain forest of the Donauauen National Park and the impressive skyline as you sail to Vienna. Go for a bike ride on the Danube Island – Vienna’s favorite recreational area - cycle to the nearby Klosterneuburg Abbey, or wander through the idyllic vineyards of Kahlenberg (with magnificent views over the city and the Danube). The day ends traditionally with a concert of classical waltz and operetta music at a famous Viennese Palais (optional).

    Day 13: Vienna (day of rest)
    Discover Vienna: from the saddle on a guided bike tour, a cycling day tour, or on your own with the Hop On Hop Off bus (optional). Ride through the historic city center at a leisurely pace and see the sights up close. The magnificent Ringstraße boulevard will remind you of times long gone, whilst inviting coffee houses will tempt you with delicious Viennese cakes and pastries. Afterwards, there’s enough time to stroll through the quaint lanes or visit the Naschmarkt. Let your day in Vienna end at a rustic wine tavern.

    Day 14: Wachau | Krems – Melk (23 miles/37 km)
    This final stage of your cycling tour can be described as 'magical'! The gentle hilly countryside of the Wachau valley with its picturesque villages, historic castles, and palaces surrounded by apricot trees and terraced vineyards is one of the loveliest stretches. In Weißenkirchen, the cycle path is lined with cozy vintner’s taverns - you should definitely have a break in this area (optional wine tasting)!

    Day 15: Passau
    Enjoy the first rays of sunlight and the early-morning tranquillity of the Danube valley one last time. Catch a final view of the Danube Bend at Schlögen before you reach Passau, your heart bursting with memories and impressions. Disembarkation at approximately 11:00 am. We recommend not to make any arrangements for onward connections departing before 12:00 pm.


    Danube Experience

     Photos Accommodation 

  • Accommodation

    Boats

      Swiss Crown

      The timeless, MV Swiss Crown will be your home away from home as you explore the Danube River region. After a day of cycling, relax in the wellness area or enjoy a glass of wine on the sundeck as you take in the breathtaking scenery along the banks of the river. Read more

      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown
      • Swiss Crown

        Overview

        • Library
        • Stylish lounge with panoramic bar
        • Wellness area with sauna and whirlpool
        • Small onboard boutique shop
        • Laundry service available
        • Sundeck with lounge chairs and tables

      Danube Experience

       Daily program Bikes 

    • Bikes

      Bikes available to be rented (reserved in advance at time of booking) include:

      • Standard touring bikes, 21-speed with caliper brake
      • Electrically assisted bike (Pedelec)*
      • Child seat, bikes for children, bike trailer, or trailer bikes (upon request)

      *More about electrically-assisted bikes >

      All rental bikes are equipped with:

      • Panniers
      • Handlebar bag
      • Air pump
      • Per cabin you will receive a service kit with breakdown tools and a bicycle lock

      You may bring your own bike for an additional €60(standard) €98(e-bike).

      Bike Protection:
      Bike protection can be purchased at the time of booking. You can read more about that HERE.

      Pedals:
      The bikes will have flat pedals. If you want to bring your own pedals, please bring your own shoes and also the necessary equipment to change the pedals.

      Helmets:
      Helmets are available to rent(please see pricing under "Bike rentals". Please make a note on the booking form to reserve in advance. We recommend for health and safety that you either take your own helmet or rent one. *Helmets are mandatory for children under 12.

       


      Danube Experience

       Accommodation Dates & Prices 

    • Dates

      • May 04; Aug 03; Sep 28, 2024

      • May 3; Jun 28; Aug 9; Sep 27, 2025.

      Prices

      • MV Swiss Crown

        Per person, double occupancy
        Main deck, Standard cabin €2349
        Middle deck, Comfort cabin €2749
        Middle deck, Mini-suite €2849
        Upper deck, Superior cabin €3099
        Single use cabin (1 person/1 cabin)
        Main deck, Standard cabin €3641

        Bike Rentals

        Standard touring bike, 21-speed €139
        Electrically assisted bike €289

        Additional Services

        Guided tour package €479
        Transfer, per vehicle/per way, Munich City center - Passau (1-8 persons) €320
        Transfer, per vehicle/per way, Munich airport - Passau (1-8 persons) €270

        Discounts

        Child, ages 0-2 sharing a room with 2 full paying adults (on base package*) 100%
        Child, ages 3-12 sharing a room with 2 full paying adult (on base package**) 30%
        Child, ages 3-12 sharing a room with 1 full paying adults (on base package**) 10%

        *Main deck, standard and Middle deck, comfort cabin only
        **Main deck, standard cabin only

      • MV Swiss Crown

        Per person, double occupancy
        Main deck, Standard cabin €2449
        Middle deck, Comfort cabin €2849
        Middle deck, Mini-suite €2949
        Upper deck, Superior cabin €3199
        Single use cabin (1 person/1 cabin)
        Main deck, Standard cabin €3796

        Bike Rentals

        Standard touring bike, 21-speed €139
        Electrically assisted bike €349
        Helmet €15

        Additional Services

        Guided tour package €525
        Transfer, per vehicle/per way, Munich City center - Passau (1-8 persons) €340
        Transfer, per vehicle/per way, Munich airport - Passau (1-8 persons) €290

        Discounts

        Child, ages 0-2 sharing a room with 2 full paying adults (on base package*) 100%
        Child, ages 3-12 sharing a room with 2 full paying adult (on base package**) 30%
        Child, ages 3-12 sharing a room with 1 full paying adults (on base package**) 10%

        *Main deck, standard and Middle deck, comfort cabin only
        **Main deck, standard cabin only

      Included services

      • 14 nights in cabins with private facilities and air conditioning
      • Full meals: breakfast, lunch on board (non-cyclists) or packed lunch (cyclists), afternoon coffee break, dinner (2-3 dishes to choose from), late-night snack
      • Detailed road book (1 per cabin)
      • Daily information meeting on board the boat
      • Port charges
      • Program according to the itinerary from/to Passau
      • Captain's greeting and welcome cocktail
      • Gala dinner with farewell cocktail
      • Daily live music
      • Cruise director onboard (does not cycle with group)

      You may book the Guided Package. This upgrade includes:

      • Cycling tour guide
      • Ferry rides
      • City tour Budapest by bus
      • City tour Belgrade by bus
      • City tour Vienna by bike
      • Bike helmet rental (only adults)

      *Please note included services may vary slightly for 2024 travel dates


      Tour Company


      Danube Experience

       Bikes Other Details 

    • Surface and terrain

      This tour mainly follows the Eurovelo cycle path. You'll enjoy flat, well-equipped bike paths in Austria. In Slovakia and Hungary, you will often cycle on paved paths over flat terrain. Croatia and Serbia offer country roads with little traffic and bike paths, though not all will be paved. Entering and leaving cities, there is some traffic to pay attention to.


      How to get there

      Tour start and end
      Nearest airport: Munich, Germany
      Nearest train station: Passau, Germany

      Private transfers are available from this tour operator for an additional cost. This must be arranged at time of booking.

      You can also arrange your own transfer from Munich Airport to Passau by train from nearby Freising station. They run at least once per hour, and you can purchase tickets after you arrive in Munich (about €22-28 per person). You'll need to take a 20 minute bus ride from the airport to the Freising station (they leave at 21 after each hour), connecting with a train from Freising to Passau (about 1 hour, 45 minutes). Airport signage is excellent, leading you to the bus and station.

      Tips for getting to and from your tour.


      Danube Experience

       Dates & Prices Tour Reviews 

      • Amy Jenkins 4 weeks ago

        Great trip!

        Great trip with a lot of variation. The crew on the Swiss Crown was wonderful, the food was very good and the cabins comfortable

        What was the date of your tour?
        May 2024
        How many tours have you completed?
        10
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        Somewhat easier
        Who is this tour suitable for?
        First-time bike tourists, Solo travelers, Families with teens
        Do you recommend this tour?
        Yes
        • 5/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 3/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 4/5 Hotels or boat
        • 4/5 Scenery
        • 3/5 Ease of navigation
        • 2/5 Tour documents
        • 4/5 Local tour company services
        • 3/5 Route selection
        • 5/5 Guides (if applicable)
      • Amy Jenkins 4 weeks ago

        Danube Experience

        This trip was great! The boat was very nice and comfortable, bikes were sturdy and visits with local guides outstanding. The paper route was not great but the app seemed to be more accurate. The daily briefings could have been more detailed.

        What was the date of your tour?
        May 2024
        How many tours have you completed?
        10+
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        As expected
        Who is this tour suitable for?
        First-time bike tourists, Solo travelers
        Do you recommend this tour?
        Yes
        • 5/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 3/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 4/5 Hotels or boat
        • 5/5 Scenery
        • 3/5 Ease of navigation
        • 2/5 Tour documents
        • 3/5 Local tour company services
        • 3/5 Route selection
        • 5/5 Guides (if applicable)
      • Estee Beard May 28, 2023

        Beautiful Trip!

        This trip is a wonderful overview of Several counties, each one unique and interesting!

        What was the date of your tour?
        May 5, 2023
        How many tours have you completed?
        5
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        As expected
        Who is this tour suitable for?
        First-time bike tourists, Solo travelers, Families with teens
        Do you recommend this tour?
        Yes
        • Countryside in Hungary (photo by Estee Beard)
        • Ready to Ride! (photo by Estee Beard)
        • Beautiful Vienna (photo by Estee Beard)
        • Largest Pipe Organ Ever! (photo by Estee Beard)
        • 5/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 5/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 5/5 Hotels or boat
        • 5/5 Scenery
        • 5/5 Ease of navigation
        • 5/5 Tour documents
        • 5/5 Local tour company services
        • 5/5 Route selection
        • 5/5 Guides (if applicable)
      • Lisa Hauenstein May 25, 2023

        Wonderful bike and boat experience

        The Swiss Crown was a great way to experience riding and touring Austria, Hungary, Serbia and the rest of places we had the pleasure to see. It was disappointing that we were not able to sail to the Iron Gates because of the weather.
        The self guided tours was good and relatively easy to follow despite our tour guide. We did not feel he did not do a good job at all He did not speak English well and a lot of what he tried to say got lost in translation and he was not very patient with our questions and concerns. We so enjoyed the boat -- everything about it was just perfect. The food was excellent and our staff were well trained and pleasant.

        What was the date of your tour?
        May 6 to May 20
        How many tours have you completed?
        4
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        As expected
        Do you recommend this tour?
        Yes
        • 5/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 4/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 5/5 Hotels or boat
        • 4/5 Scenery
        • 4/5 Ease of navigation
        • 3/5 Tour documents
        • 4/5 Local tour company services
        • 4/5 Route selection
        • 3/5 Guides (if applicable)
      • John Gallagher May 24, 2023

        Better than I had hoped

        Everything about the ship was five star. The food was shockingly good. I had been on other bike tour companies with the food was very good for almost twice the price. The staff were all wonderful especially our waiter Samir. The boat was very comfortable and exceedingly well-maintained. We booked through Biketours.com who did an excellent job. The tours can be booked directly with rad and risen an Austrian company but it was the same price. It was an excellent value and I’m already daydreaming about a river cruise with bike in barge in the future.

        What was the date of your tour?
        May 2024
        How many tours have you completed?
        7
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        Somewhat easier
        Who is this tour suitable for?
        First-time bike tourists, Families with teens
        Do you recommend this tour?
        Yes
        • 5/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 5/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 5/5 Hotels or boat
        • 5/5 Scenery
        • 4/5 Ease of navigation
        • 4/5 Tour documents
        • 5/5 Local tour company services
        • 5/5 Route selection
      • Amy Dosser May 24, 2023

        Beautiful River

        A lovely boat and lovely people. Great book and app to guide you on your biking. Food was wonderful.

        What was the date of your tour?
        May 2023
        How many tours have you completed?
        2
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        As expected
        Who is this tour suitable for?
        First-time bike tourists, Solo travelers
        Do you recommend this tour?
        Yes
        • 5/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 4/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 5/5 Hotels or boat
        • 5/5 Scenery
        • 5/5 Ease of navigation
        • 5/5 Tour documents
        • 5/5 Local tour company services
        • 5/5 Route selection
      • Donna Schultz August 27, 2022

        Ship needs better ventilation in dining room.

        We booked trip 3 years ago. It was cancelled twice. We are fully Covid vaccinated and boosted. The crew wore masks for the first 5 days. On day 7, my husband got Covid. The only place for exposure was the dining room. All the passengers ate together in a dining room that did not have good ventilation. There was no options for open air dining or room dining. We lost 4 days while he recovered.

        After waiting so long for trip, it was disappointing there was not adequate controls to avoid virus spread.

        After he got sick. I noticed at least 6 other people that were also coughing. No one was ill at beginning of trip.

        We will not go on another bike boat trip that does not take precautions to reduce virus spread. There should be changes in table spacing, air flow & circulation, better air filtration, & open air dining option.

        The boat was Swiss Crown.

        What was the date of your tour?
        August 2022
        How many tours have you completed?
        I have been on inn to inn tours. This was first bike boat tour
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        Much easier
        Who is this tour suitable for?
        First-time bike tourists, Solo travelers
        • 4/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 5/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 4/5 Hotels or boat
        • 5/5 Scenery
        • 4/5 Ease of navigation
        • 5/5 Tour documents
        • 4/5 Local tour company services
        • 5/5 Route selection
      • John McNeiece August 4, 2022

        Trip of a lifetime

        We had been anticipating this trip for two years and it lived up to all our expectations and more. Riding bikes in 6 different countries over 14 days was amazing! The bikes were great. The boat was perfect. The staff was nothing but helpful and professional. We are already planning a follow-up tour. The folks at biketours.com did a great job with all the details!

        What was the date of your tour?
        June
        Difficulty (actual vs. expected)?
        As expected
        Who is this tour suitable for?
        First-time bike tourists
        Do you recommend this tour?
        Yes
        • 5/5 Value
        • 5/5 Included meals
        • 5/5 Bikes + equipment
        • 5/5 Hotels or boat
        • 5/5 Scenery
        • 5/5 Ease of navigation
        • 4/5 Tour documents
        • 5/5 Local tour company services
        • 4/5 Route selection

      Danube Experience

       Other Details Book This Tour 

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