An eight day adventure travelling along the River Danube by bike and boat: Passau to Budapest, taking in two other great capital cities of Vienna and Bratislava, is an exquisite way to explore central Europe. Cycle alongside the iconic river by day, taking in natural heritage highlights such as the Wachau Valley Wine Region and the great loop of Schlögener Schlinge with views across the Danube Bend. Then chill on your riverboat by night, enjoying dinner as you sail from one pretty port to the next. All meals included, with cycle hire an optional extra.
- Schlögener Schlinge
- Wachau Valley Wine Region
- Danube Bend
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Day 1: Passau
Located on the confluence of the Danube, Inn and Ilz Rivers, Passau offers numerous interesting sights to visit. Take some time in Passau to stroll through the cobblestoned streets of the Old Town, listening to the bells of Passau’s Gothic Town Hall or visit Saint Stephen’s Cathedral, home to one of the world’s biggest cathedral organs with 17,974 pipes and 233 registers. After spending the day exploring Passau, begin boarding the riverboat at 16.00, ready for an 18.00 departure.
Day 2: Schlögener Schlinge – Aschach an der Donau | 42km
The first day of cycling begins by following the riverside around the great loop of Schlögener Schlinge, passing through small villages where you can stop at one of the many cosy cider taverns. Continue towards Engelhartszell an der Donau, passing Engelszell Abbey, formally Austria’s only Trappist monastery which produced their own liqeurs and cheese. Take a break at Schlögener Blick to take in the panoramic views of the surrounding Austrian countryside before re-boarding the riverboat for an afternoon sail to Aschach an der Donau.
- Cycling for the day: 42km
Day 3: Devin – Bratislava | 43km
This morning begins by cycling along the former Iron Curtain to visit the Imperial palace of Schloss Hof, a 17th-century citadel, before continuing towards Bratislava. Spend the rest of the day exploring the city’s sights, including Bratislava Castle and Hrad Devín or take part in an optional guided city tour.
- Cycling for the day: 43km
Day 4: Budapest or excursion to Szentendre | 54km
Explore Hungary’s capital on either a coach tour or an optional guided bike tour, which offers the opportunity to visit many of the city’s attractions and highlights. Today also provides an option to cycle to Szentendre, known for its Serbian heritage and lively arts scene, before spending the evening at a folklore show with traditional music, local food and dancing.
- Cycling for the day: 54km
Day 5: Danube Bend – Esztergom | 43km
Begin the morning exploring Szentendre Island, nestled between the Danube Bend and Budapest, before continuing towards Esztergom. Spend the rest of the day exploring the city, visiting the Castle Museum or the Basilica of Esztergom, the largest church in Hungary.
- Cycling for the day: 43km
Day 6: Vienna
Explore Austria’s capital either by bike or tour bus, visiting many of the city’s most notable sights, including the Imperial palace of Hofburg, Saint Stephen’s Cathedral, Vienna State Opera House, Burgtheater and Hundertwasserhaus. After the tour, spend the rest of the afternoon relaxing in one of Vienna’s famous cafés or indulge in some shopping, or check out the many concert options at one of the famous Viennese Palaces.
Day 7: Wachau Valley | 39km
Begin the morning cycling through the Baroque town of Dürnstein, heading past the blue spire of Stift Dürnstein Abbey, which marks your entry into the Wachau Valley. Amidst small towns, apricot orchards, sprawling vineyards and historic castles, the undulating terrain of the Wachau Valley Wine Region. Take a break in Weißenkirchen in der Wachau for an optional wine tasting, or stop at one of the many wine taverns along the route.
- Cycling for the day: 39km
Day 8: Passau
Spend the final morning relaxing on the sundeck as the riverboat winds its way back to Passau, where you disembark at approximately 11.00.
What to expect
Accommodation is in outward-facing cabins on a riverboat for the duration of the tour. Cabins on both riverboats have en-suite bathrooms, air-conditioning, TV and a hair dryer. For more details see below. Upgrades available upon request.
This tour is full board and includes breakfast, lunch on board (non-cyclists) or packed lunch (cyclists), afternoon coffee break, dinner and evening snacks.
Difficulty and terrain
The tour is rated easy and includes daily cycling distances of 42-54km, with the option of skipping any day and staying on the boat. The route mainly follows the Eurovelo Six across mostly flat terrain (read more about difficulty grades).
When to go
This trip is available to start every Sunday from 28 April-06 October as well as the following Saturdays: 18 May, 01 June, 31 August, 14 September. For more information on travelling in Austria, please visit our blog Best time to go to Austria.
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If you are able to travel to Germany without flying, this holiday is reachable by rail, with a railway station in Passau offering connections to many other regions throughout Germany and Europe. For more details, see the national rail operator Deutsche Bahn.
From Munich Airport, you can take a train to Passau, changing at Freising (2h 15mins). From Vienna Airport, take a train to Passau, changing at Wien Hbf (2h 30mins). For timetables and further information, visit the national rail operator Deutsche Bahn or use the Omio planner above
If travelling by car, parking is available in Passau for between €71-83, including shuttle transfer to and from the pier, payable locally.
- 7 nights in in en-suite cabins
- Port charges
- Captain‘s greeting and welcome cocktail
- Gala dinner and farewell cocktail
- Daily cabin cleaning, towels and bed linen
- Full board: breakfast buffet, lunch on board (non-cyclists) or packed lunch (cyclists), afternoon coffee break, dinner (2/3 dishes to choose), evening snack
- Trip manager on board (does not cycle with the group)
- Daily information meeting
- Detailed roadbook per cabin
- Airfare and connecting land transfers
- Drinks and snacks
- Travel insurance (required – get a quote online)
- Personal expenses
- Local tourist taxes and entry fees (payable locally)
- Any items not explicitly listed as included
Options, extras and supplements
- If you’re travelling in a group, a supplement applies to group members who would like to have a room of their own
- This holiday is available for solo travellers; a supplement will be charged as accommodation and luggage transfer costs are not shared (we never mix and match – solo travellers will be accommodated in single rooms)
- Cabin upgrades
- Bike rental
- Helmet rental
- Guided supplement including a private guide while cycling, bus city tour in Budapest, cider and wine tastings
Both hybrid and e-bikes are available to rent on this tour. All bikes come with a 20L pannier and a handlebar bag. Sample pictures attached below, note that the exact models may differ depending on availability, but the standard will be the same.