A relatively flat cycling route along the German section of the Danube, starting in either Donauschingen, Donauworth or Regensburg, ending in in either Donauworth, Regensburg, or Passau near the Austrian border.
The austere and beautiful landscape which stretches between the Black Forest and the Swabian Alb, through the wildly romantic Danube opening and through the gentle, fertile foothills of Upper Swabia to Donauwörth.
In Bavarian Swabia, the Danube is quieter, the valley wider and the mountains lower. Significant towns cluster along the river banks like a string of pearls. The Weltenburg Monastery is a destination for both pilgrims and beer lovers. Regensburg radiates historical elegance and was designated a World Heritage site by UNESCO in July 2006.
In Lower Bavaria the Danube meanders between hop-fields to the right and the foothills of the Bavarian Forest to the left. Kehlheim, Straubing and Deggendorf are destination along the way to the three river city of Passau. Under the baroque buildings of this Residence town the Danube, Inn and Ilz rivers meet and for a few kilometres engage in a colourful display of colours with blue, green and brown merging.
INDEPENDENT TOUR OPTIONS
5 days: Regensburg to Passau
8 days: Donaueschingen to Donauworth
Donaueschingen to Regensburg (athletic tour)
Donauworth to Passau
10 days: Donaueschingen to Passau (athletic tour)
14 days: Donaueschingin to Passau
DAY TO DAY ITINERARY
“Brigach und Breg bringen die Donau zuweg” is the phrase people say here meaning that the Brigach and Breg rivers jointly form the river Danube. The Romans considered the spring in the parkland of Castle Fürstenberg to be the start of the Danube. The castle, in the style of the Belle Epoque, is an impressive testimony to Fürstenberg Family’s former significance. Reserved rental bicycles are parked at the hotel ready for you.
Overnight stay in Donaueschingen
The first section takes you through the Baar region. In Immendingen you can witness a spectacular natural scene known as the Danube Sink, where the river disappears for a large part of the year into the limestone ground. Instead of flowing into the Black Sea, part of the Danube flows via the Aachtopf, Lake Constance and the Rhine into the North Sea. Behind Tuttlingen, the valley narrows and you reach Beuron with its well-known Benedictine Monastery.
Overnight stay in Fridingen/Beuron
Today, you follow the Danube enjoying the wonderful countryside that has evolved in this valley over the course of the years. Limestone cliffs, looming over 100 metres high, line your path. Every once in a while you will spy castles or ruins perched on top of the rocks. In Sigmaringen the historic Hohenzollern Castle awaits you. It is still home to the Hohenzollern family today.
Overnight stay in Scheer
Instead of rough cliffs and rock, a gentler landscape greets you today. It’s worth taking a detour to the former Celtic town of Heuneburg. Via Riedlingen, whose townscape is shaped by timber-frame houses, you cycle to Ehingen. This baroque town places great emphasis on its beer culture: four independent, traditional breweries have been instrumental in shaping the history of this town.
Overnight stay in Ehingen
You follow either the Danube or decide to take a detour via Blaubeuren. This is where a spring emerges in the Blautopf or “blue pot”, which also marks the start of a huge system of caves. The colour of the water is so blue it looks as if it could have been dyed. This blue river takes you to the Swabian town of Ulm, which boasts the highest church tower in the world. It takes 768 steps to climb up it. You are rewarded at the top with panoramic views of the Alps.
Overnight stay in Ulm
Between Ulm and Dillingen, small town follows small town. They are all located flood safe on raised ground and have been beautifully preserved. Over 50 million little bricks in all manner of colours and shapes can be admired in Legoland in Günzburg. Lauingen, the “Town of Towers” is just before Dillingen, which you will recognize by its magnificent castle.
Overnight stay in Lauingen/Dillingen
Taking you through the meadowland around the Danube, your last section of the tour takes you to Donauwörth at the mouth of the Wörnitz. This is where the former most important trade route between Nuremberg and Augsburg crossed the Danube. The elegant houses here are a reminder to us today of the town’s historic importance. The Käthe-Kruse doll museum is a treat not only for children.
Overnight stay in Donauwörth
Today you will be moving on swiftly. You soon reach the foothills of the Franconian Alb mountains, which liven up the route as you cycle along this gently undulating section of the tour. It’s worth taking a look at Neuburg’s old town, for example the court church or the town theatre. Ingolstadt has a wonderful medieval flair and is known all over the world as the town where Audi manufactures its cars. Visit the Mobile Museum or wander through the historic city centre.
Overnight stay in Ingolstadt
Today you follow the Danube Cycle Rath to Neustadt and then on to Bad Gögging passing many fields of hops on the way. As you continue you will see a very special natural spectacle: the Danube Gap between Weltenburg and Kelheim. The Danube carves its way here through the rocks of the Franconian Jura mountains. Departing from the famous Benedictine Monastery, a boat takes you to Kelheim.
Overnight stay in Kelheim
Before you start, you should go up to the Hall of Liberation, which gives you wonderful panoramic views of the area. The route then takes you on to Regensburg, the northernmost point of the Danube. This town is considered Germany’s best preserved city and has been declared a UNESCO Heritage Site. Bring your day to a pleasant end with a walk through the winding alleyways of the town’s Spitalviertel ‒ or hospital quarter.
Overnight stay in Regensburg
We can recommend taking your first break in Walhalla, close to Donaustauf. The route then takes you on along the Danube to Castle Wörth. From here you can look over the Gäuboden, or Bavaria’s “granary” and one of the largest loess regions in South Germany. Today’s section ends in the old city of Straubing, which looks back on Celtic and Roman roots. The town’s striking tower is this small town’s land mark.
Overnight stay in Straubing
Today you first cycle through Bogen, which became known when a statue of the pregnant Madonna was found here in 1104. The Church of the Assumption on Bogenberg is the oldest pilgrimage church of the Madonna in Bavaria. The tour takes you on through Pfelling and Mariaposching to the Benedictine Abbey in Metten. Deggendorf is your destination today. Gothic and baroque styles characterise the unusual pear-shaped site of the old town.
Overnight stay in Deggendorf
This section takes you to the small historic town of Vilshofen. It is famous largely due to the Ash Wednesday speeches given here by the Chairman of the CSU Party, Strauß. You will soon reach your destination of the three-rivers town and former diocese, Passau. Discover the Danube, Inn and Ilz by boat and let your day come to a pleasant end with a walk through the historic city centre or a visit to the fortress Veste Oberaus.
Overnight stay in Passau
After breakfast your cycling holiday along the German Danube comes to an end and you will return home. We would also be more than happy to extend your stay in Passau.
RATING – Easy to Moderate
The route is mainly flat and along asphalt cycle paths. There are also long stretches along compressed earth paths, small sections run through forests and sometimes the route leads along roads with traffic. Suitable for everyone with a basic level of fitness.
AIRPORT / TRANSFERS
The nearest international airport is Munich, with regular rail transfers available to all start cities.
TOUR SCHEDULE & PRICE
These independent tours depart daily from April to October
Season 1: April 21 to May 4; September 16 to October 7
Season 2: June 3 to 29; August 25 to September 15
Season 3: May 5 to June 2; June 30 to August 24
|Price per person – 5 day tour||CAD||$890|
|Price per person – 8 day tour||CAD||$940|
|Price per person – 8 day athletic tour||CAD||$940|
|Price per person – 10 day tour||CAD||$1230|
|Price per person – 14 day tour||CAD||$1600|
|Half-board surcharge (evening dinner plan)||On request|
|Optional tandem bike surcharge||$25/day|
|Optional electric bike surcharge||$25/day|
|Season 2 surcharge||20%|
|Season 3 surcharge||25%|
This tour includes:
You may upgrade your accommodation to all 3.5 & 4 star quality hotels. Prices on request.
City or visitor‘s tax, if payable, is not included in the tour price.
Telephone: 705-949-1710 or 888-297-4786
Station Mall, 293 Bay St., Sault Ste Marie, P6A 1X3
Monday to Friday: 9.30 am. to 5.30 pm.
Saturday: by appointment