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- 5 nights
- From $2390.00 USD
- Departing 10 June 2012
- Gay Men only
Explore Austria by bike
Our bike tour takes us along one of the most charming bike paths in Europe following the Danube River. Beginning in Linz we will make our way to Vienna on an enchanting ride across gently rolling terrain through fairytale forests and rural hamlets. From castles to cathedrals, we'll see a stunning array of architectural styles.
Kick off your Central European tour with a night on the town in gay Linz.
Follow the Danube as it winds alongside what many consider to be the most beautiful bike path in the world.
Ride among lush forests and lovely rolling plains.
Visit Steyregg Castle, dating back to the late 11th century, featuring the castle chapel with its magnificent gothic frescoes from the 14th century (redone in baroque style in 1680).
Enjoy comfortable accommodations and tasty local cuisine at the end of each day.
Celebrate your ride with a night in Vienna, a fun and gay-friendly city.
If you have the time, join our Danube Dreams ride to Bratislava and Budapest following Blue Danube.
Second Trip Discount on Danube Dreams if Combined with Blue Danube.
Starts in Linz, Austria and ends in Vienna, Austria
Lodging in comfortable city hotels and local inns; Services of two bike tour guides; All breakfasts, some lunches, and most dinners (with wine included at group dinners); Transportation to get luggage (and tired riders!) to destination; Use of bike; Detailed map and route suggestions.
So are most of the people who travel with us. You do not need to pay extra to travel by yourself. Prices are per-person, and the single supplement applies only if you'd like a room by yourself. For selected trips, including cruises, we will charge half the single supplement if you request a roommate but we can't match you with someone.
|Day 1||Welcome to Linz||To begin our tour, we meet in Linz - Austria's third-largest city. Straddling the Danube, bustling, mercantile Linz dates back to Roman times. A recent European capital of culture, Linz boasts multiple museums and music festivals. Linz was once home to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (and to Adolph Hitler, alas)! While in Linz, you must visit the Hauptplatz, the enormous medieval center of old town with its beautiful baroque-style architecture, featuring Trinity Column, its most famous structure in the heart of the city on the banks of the Danube. Also not to be missed is the sleek new riverside Lentos art museum, showing simultaneous contemporary art exhibitions. The building is itself a work of art, remarkable for its transparent glass casing, attractively lit at night. A café with a viewing terrace is located on the ground floor. The Ars Electronica Center, with its "museum of the future," an enormous exhibition space providing fun encounters with innovative projects and current issues at the interface of art, technology and society, and the Palace Museum are both located just across the long span of the Niebelungen bridge.|
|Day 2||Linz to Grein||On day two of our tour, we'll ride 60 km along the north bank of the Danube taking in some significant historical sights. Steyregg Castle, dating back to the late 11th century, features the castle chapel with its magnificent gothic frescoes from the 14th century (redone in baroque style in 1680). Mauthausen Memorial is a World War II concentration camp where an estimated 123,000 people were murdered by the Nazis. After sightseeing, we’ll spend the night in one of Austria's most picturesque and oldest towns: Grein.|
|Day 3||Grein to Melk||Our third day includes a 50 km trek, but not before we cross the Danube by boat. The ride begins from a shady pathway right alongside the river. Beer and wurst stands line the route, populated almost entirely by cyclists! The first town we'll encounter is Ybbs, with its lovely old Renaissance houses, and noted for its impressive Gothic parish church and the Renaissance fountain in the town center. It also boasts a museum devoted to, of all things, the history of bicycles! Further along the ride, the town of Pochlarn offers a collection of interesting museums, a modernized market square, and many exquisite samples of rare flora and fauna, while also providing an ideal spot for lunch. Melk, our resting stop for the night, is dominated by a gigantic Benedictine Abbey, one of the best-known monasteries in Europe. Well worth visiting, Leopold II of Babenberg presented this palace to Benedictine monks in the 11th century. They turned it into a fortified abbey, and its influence and reputation as a center of learning and culture spread throughout Austria, as reflected in Umberto Eco's popular novel The Name of the Rose. (Eco researched his novel in the abbey's library.)|
|Day 4||Melk to Krems||Today's 45 km ride begins by crossing the fabled Wachau wine-growing region, perhaps the most scenic stretch of our excursion. Lovely towns like Weisskirchen, Durnstein and Spitz prosper from the vines which surround them. Make sure to stop for a tasting of the local Gruner Veltliner, a varietal white wine whose grapes are grown primarily in Austria, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. It has a reputation as a particularly food-friendly wine, and is made into many wines of different styles. As we approach the end of our riding for the day, we'll enter Krems, the largest town in the Wachau, through its atmospheric, timeless suburb of Stein. Krems is located at the confluence of the Danube and Krems rivers, and features an amazingly well-preserved medieval core, ideal for exploring on foot once the bikes are secured for the day. The town is more than 1,000 years old, and impresses visitors with its historical buildings and the different faces of Krems within the old town centre.|
|Day 5||Krems to Tulln or Vienna||Our final scheduled day leaves two options: a 40 km ride to Tulln; or an 80 km ride to Vienna. The highlight of the day's ride is Tulln, an ancient town dating back to Roman times with many attractions: a Roman tower (one of the oldest structures in Austria); the Roman Museum; a lovely planted promenade along the river; the Egon-Schiele-Museum; and the famous Tulln Gardens. The Gardens are not only the first permanent organic Horticultural Show in Europe, but they are surrounded by a beautiful woodland with waterways for canoeing, walking paths for strolling through the forest and a connecting bridge to the charming town. Because of the abundance of parks and other green spaces, Tulln is often referred to as Blumenstadt, meaning city of flowers. From Tulln you'll have the choice of taking a quick train ride into Vienna, or pedaling all the way to town through forests and atop a long manmade pleasure island, the Donauinsel. History and architecture buffs will be tempted to make small detours to the famous towns of Stockerau and Korneuberg. Stockerau offers a range of exhibitions, concerts, readings and singing evenings in its cultural centre. A very distinct museum is located in the cellar of one of the castles built in the 16th century and later revitalized by the town community in 1984. Korneuberg is the administrative center of the district of Korneuburg, located on the left bank of the Danube, and is 12 km northwest of Vienna. Most cyclists, however, will likely heed the call of Austria's monument-filled - and bike friendly - capital, Vienna.|
|Day 6||Departure Day||Our trip officially ends after breakfast, but if you've got early connections, you can rise and depart as early as you need to. An experience as intense as this creates strong bonds, and it's sad to say goodbye to new friends. But if the past is any guide, we'll see each other again on future adventures. And if you've got a few extra days, you can join our group cycling from Vienna to Budapest. Our pre-trip newsletter makes it easy to join a trip there with others in the group.|