Danube Experience Iron Gates, MS Carissima
DANUBE CYCLE PATH BY BIKE AND BOAT
- 15 Days / 14 Nights
- Self-guided tour
- Minimum number of participants: 50 persons
Embarkation 4.00 p.m. in Passau; departure is at 5.00 p.m. 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.
Enjoy a delightful day’s cycling from Obernzell through the ruggedly romantic Danube Bend at Schlögen, one of the most beautiful sections of the river lined with sleepy farming villages. Along the way, you can drop in at one of the many inviting cider taverns. Rejoin the ship in the idyllic market town of Aschach, with its long tradition of ship-building and shipping, before sailing into the night.
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. There follows a stretch of untouched countryside and a short time later, 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 centre.
Savour 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 hearty local food (optional).
From the quiet baroque town of Baja that is famous for its fish soup, you’ll cycle along the flood protection dykes in the Gemenc floodplain, through sleepy river landscapes past fields of sunflowers. At the end of today’s stage, you take the ferry to the little town of Mohacs, Hungary’s most southerly town on the Danube and famously the site of two battles with the Ottoman Turks.
Belgrade(day of rest)
Explore the fun-loving Serbian capital at the confluence of the Save 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 colourful folklore show with traditional dances from all parts of the country, followed by typical regional specialities in the well-known bohemian district of Skadarlija with lively folk music from a Serbian band (optional).
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!
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 revolves around wine. In the evening you will have the opportunity to sample some famous Serbian wines at a local wine cellar (optional).
In the border trianlge 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 hardly touched nature in 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.
Kalocsa – Soltapprox. 50 km
Kalocsa is the “Paprika Capital” of Hungary and the character of the town is strongly influenced by colourful 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 skies from the flat Hungarian plain. Visiting the Paprika Museum you’ll learn all there is to know about Hungary’s favourite spice. Continue your journey on the well-built cycle path along the flood protection dyke through the vast expanse of the puszta, and corn fields and orchards that stretch as far as the eye can see until you reach Solt, birthplace of the famous conductor Sir George Solti. Vecsey Castle and the library with some 34,000 books are especially worth seeing.
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 that sits high over the Danube can be seen from far and wide. Hungary’s largest church, with its Tuscan-style high altar and a side chapel with red marble walls is especially worth seeing.
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 into Vienna. Go for a ride on the Danube Island – Vienna’s favourite recreational area, cycle out to the nearby Klosterneuburg Abbey or wander through the idyllic vineyards on Kahlenberg (with magnificent views over the city and the Danube). The day ends traditionally with a concert of classic waltz and operetta music in the Schönbrunn palace (optional).
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 centre at a leisurely pace and see the sights from close up. The magnificent Ringstraße will remind you of times long past and 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, a feast for the senses. End your day in Vienna in traditional fashion at a rustic wine tavern.
This final stage of your cycling tour can best be described as magical! The gentle hilly countryside of the Wachau with its picturesque villages, historic castles and palaces surrounded by apricot trees and terraced vineyards, is one of the loveliest stretches of the river. In Weißenkirchen the cycle path is lined with cosy vintner’s taverns and you should definitely treat yourself to a break here (optional wine tasting)!
Enjoy the first rays of sun 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 approx. 10.00 a.m. Independent homeward travel. We recommend that you do not make any arrangements for onward connections departing before 11.00 a.m. To be on the safe side, later departure times would be even better.
The Danube cycle path has been built excellently and runs flat or slightly downhill. It mainly runs right along the edge of the river. Those who are tired or don't feel like cycling on any of the days can enjoy the journey from aboard the boat.
- 14 nights in outside cabins with private shower/WC and air conditioning
- Program according to itinerary from/to Passau
- Captain's welcome and welcome cocktail
- Daily cabin cleaning, towels and bed linen
- Full board: 14 x breakfast buffet, 13 x lunch on board (non-cyclists) or packed lunch (cyclists), afternoon coffee break, 14 x dinner (2/3 dishes to choose from), late night snack
- Gala dinner with farewell cocktail
- Crew Show
- Daily live music
- Tour guide on board (does not cycle with the group)
- Daily information meeting
- 1 detailed roadbook per cabin
- Car park (fenced area) incl. transfer from car park – boat – parking space for €104
- Garage car park incl. transfer from car park – boat – park garage for €117 per week
(Application form in your travel documents or online, payable locally)
Number of participants:
- Minimum of 50 people (has to be reached 4 weeks before cruise start at the latest)
This tour has 6 more variations
Enjoy the new, exclusive atmosphere in the comfortable cabins and stylish public areas aboard the MS Carissima.