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

    5/5 (1)
    14 nights | 24 miles/day
    Self guided from EUR € 2349
    Rider Level: Recreational Electric bike tours Bike and boat tours
    5/5 (1)

    14 nights | 24 miles/day
    Self guided from EUR € 2349

    Rider Level: Recreational Electric bike tours Bike and boat tours

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    • Danube Experience

      14 night self guided bike tour in Austria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Serbia and Slovakia

      Come with us on an adventure-packed bike and boat tour through six countries and widely differing cultures that reveal the beauty of the majestic Danube River in all its glory.

      Discover the breath-taking natural scenery of the Iron Gates, one of the most spectacular gorges in Europe, the vast expanse of the Pannonian plains, cycle through the Danube Bend in Hungary and the breadbaskets of Croatia and Serbia, 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 the picturesque Old Town of Bratislava, and let yourself be carried away by the elegant charm of Vienna, the City of 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? 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.

      Highlights

      • The four capital cities along the Danube Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest and Belgrade
      • The mighty canyon of the Iron Gates National Park is the highlight of this cycling holiday
      • Kalocsa, the “Paprika Capital”
      • The commanding citadel Petrovaradin
      • Novi Sad, the magnificent capital of the Vojvodina
      • The Basilica in Esztergom
      • The Drava-Nemzeti National Park
      • The countryside of the Danube Bend
      • The fabulous Wachau region with its vineyards and castles

      Learn More

      Learn more about self-guided tours.

    • Daily program

      Proof of vaccination against COVID-19 will be required for this tour

      Day 1: Arrival to Passau
      Embarkation by 4:00pm in Passau; departure is at 5:00pm. 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 at the Jochenstein power plant 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 classic scenery of the "Great Loop" Donauschlinge, one of the most beautiful sections of the Danube. Along the way, you will encounter tiny villages and cozy cider taverns. In Austria’s only Trappist monastery at Engelhartszell 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 arrive in the vibrant city of Bratislava. Our miniature train tour of the Slovakian capital in which Hungarian kings were once crowned (optional) begins with a glorious view from the fortress perched on a hill overlooking the city and ends with a walk through the beautifully restored 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 the city's 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 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 in 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 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 on the shores that are reflected in the blue waters of the river: 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 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 cycle through the never-ending "Backa." Small, idyllic villages and endless canola fields accompany you from Croatia to Serbia and 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 at 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 and the cathedral with its towers that can be seen even from a distance as they rise into the sky from the flat Hungarian plain. 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, hilly 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 far. 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 breath-taking 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 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 ago, and inviting coffee houses will tempt you with delicious Viennese cakes and pastries. Afterward, 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 (24 miles/39 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 and 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 11:00am. We recommend not to make any arrangements for onward connections departing before 12:00pm.

      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 Servia 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!


      Boats

      Swiss Crown

      *Inquire for details


      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.

      Your can also arrange your own transfer from Munich Airport to Passau by train from nearby Freising station. They run at least once an 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

    • Dates

      May 06; Aug 05; Sep 30, 2023

      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

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

      Extra Nights, Passau

      Per person, double occupancy €72
      Single room (1 person/1 room) €105

      Additional Services

      Guided tour package €459
      Transfer, per vehicle/per way, Munich City center - Passau (1-8 persons) €240
      Transfer, per vehicle/per way, Munich airport - Passau (1-8 persons) €260

      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

      Proof of vaccination against COVID-19 will be required for this tour

      • 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)

      Bike rentals

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

      • Hybrid 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
      • Tool kit

      You may bring your own bike for an additional €60(hybrid) €80(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 purchase, payable upon arrival to the boat. Please make a note on the booking form to reserve in advance. We recommend for health and safety purposes that you take your own helmet or plan to purchase one upon arrival. Helmets are mandatory for children up to age 12.

       


      Tour Company

      • Donna Schultz 1 month ago

        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 2 months ago

        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