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Highlights of this tour

Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary

Day of rest & exploration in Budapest

Around 200 km / 147 miles

Ships with max. 100 passengers

Guidance
  • Fully-guided: A tour leader will guide you during the cycling days
  • Semi-guided: Daily briefing by the tour leader, independent cycling but tour leader available ICE.
  • Independent: No tour leader, the ships’ crew does daily briefing, independent cycling
guidance Individual
Difficulty
  • Level 1: easy tours, very flat terrain
  • Level 2: quite easy tours, mostly flat terrain
  • Level 3: requires a higher level of exertion, medium hilly terrain
  • Level 4: for experienced cyclists, hilly terrain with climbs
Difficulty level 1 Difficulty level 1
Duration of the tour.
tijd2 Created with Sketch. 8 days

Bike and Barge Danube: Passau – Budapest – Passau | Normandie and Arlene II | 2021: Prinzessin Katharina and SE-Manon

Accompanied by a cruise ship you cycle along Europe’s second largest river Danube from the charming Bavarian “three river city” of Passau straight into the heart of the once glorious Imperial and Royal Monarchy.

Enjoy three of the most enchanting European capitals: the lively Vienna, the Slovak coronation city of Bratislava at the foot of the Carpathian Mountains and Budapest, the “Hungarian Danube Queen”! By bicycle you discover the stunning natural spectacle of the Schlögener Donauschlinge (“Great Loop”), the legendary Wachau with romantic towns and mighty castles amidst lovely vineyards, the untouched alluvial forests of the Danube National Park, as well as the picturesque Hungarian Danube bend where the important cupola of the basilica in Esztergom salutes from the distance.

The highlights of the tour: Passau, the City of 3 rivers, the Schloegen Danube Loop, the Hungarian Danube Bend, the World Heritage Site Wachau, the metropolis of Bratislava, Budapest and Vienna.

2020: the Normandie tours start and end on Saturday and the Arlene II tours start and end on Sunday. Due to the closure of Hungary, we have rerouted two departures of the Normandie to the route Passau-Vienna-Passau: 12th of September and 26th of September
2021: the Prinzessin Katharina tours start and end on Saturday and the SE-Manon tours start and end on Tuesday.

Day to day program

Day 1: Passau | Passau – Engelhartszell 

Arrival in the “Three River City”. Passau attracts many with the world’s greatest church organ at the Stephansdom and it’s charming Old Town. Embarkation will be between 4 and 5 p.m.. Departure around 7 p.m. Enjoy your first dinner on board and an evening sail to Engelhartszell.

Day 2: Engelhartszell – Great Loop – Brandstatt  ca. 46 km/27.6 mi. | Brandstatt – Bratislava (Normandie/SE-Manon) or Devin (Arlene II/Prinzessin Katharina)

 

The day starts in Engelhartszell (the only Trappist monastery in Austria), where we head towards the “Great Loop” – one of the most beautiful and original sectors of the Danube. Your cycling will encounter small villages and cosy must-see taverns. You’ll board again in Brandstatt.
Normandie/SE-Manon:  Then, you “sail into the night” towards Bratislava.
Arlene II/Prinzessin Katharina: Then, you “sail into the night” towards Devin.

Day 3: Normandie/SE-Manon: Bratislava, ca. 54 km/32.4 mi. | Arlene II/Prinzessin Katharina: Devin – Bratislava, ca. 54 km/32.4 mi. | Bratislava – Budapest

Normandie/SE-Manon: Arrival at Bratislava. You start cycling from Bratislava via Hainburg to the imposing Imperial Palace of Hof beautifully terraced gardens and idyllic manor farm further on to Devin and then back to Bratislava. Tip: discover the hidden alleys of Bratislava, places and all the sights of this ambitious metropolis during a tour by mini train and by foot. In the night shipping to Budapest.

Arlene II/Prinzessin Katharina: Arrival at Devin in the morning. The cycle tour takes you to the imposing Imperial Palace of Hof. After crossing the green line you cycle along the former “Iron Curtain” towards the coronation city of Bratislava at the foot of the Carpathian Mountains. Tip: discover the hidden alleys of Bratislava, places and all the sights of this ambitious metropolis during a tour by mini train and by foot. In the night shipping to Budapest.

Day 4: Budapest (day of rest) or round trip to Szentendre, ca. 40 km/24 mi. | Budapest – Visegrad

In the early morning, you enjoy the panoramic view of the Danube’s gorgeous landscape on the Sundeck. The gateway to Budapest is overwhelming, as many of the famous tourist features are situated directly next to the river bank. In the afternoon you can explore the numerous attractions of the city. Nearby, you find the Margaretheninsel which is outstandingly qualified for a small bike tour or the charming town of Szentendre with Mediterranean atmosphere and lively art life. In the night shipping to Visegrad.

Day 5: Danube Bend | Visegrad – Esztergom, ca. 25 – 60 km/15 – 36 mi. | Esztergom – Vienna

The Danube bend is definitely one of most delightful and attractive parts and is called the Hungarian Wachau. Today’s bike leg starts at Visegrad with its famous fortress and the ruins of the former palace. You can choose from 2 different routes: the longer one includes a side trip to the island of Szentendre and the baroque village of Vác, which has been influenced by the architects of the Austrian empress Maria Theresia. The other route leads you directly to the bishop-town of Esztergom, with its gorgeous basilica – Hungary’s largest Catholic Church – overlooking the village. In the night shipping to Vienna.

Day 6: Vienna-Nussdorf / (Korneuburg may also be possible) (day of rest) | Vienna-Nussdorf – Rossatz or Dürnstein

You should be sure to see the most famous places of interest like the St. Stephens Cathedral, the Hofburg, the gorgeous boulevard “Ringstraβe” with the Burgtheater, the State Opera House or the town hall that takes you back to the past. In the night shipping to Rossatz or Dürnstein (Wachau).

Day 7: Wachau – Melk – Pöchlarn, ca. 42 – 52 km/ 25.2 – 31.2 mi. | Pöchlarn – Passau

 

Your last biking day is a special highlight! Amidst small dreamy villages, apricot trees, vineyards, castles, monasteries and ruins, this gentle hilly landscape enchants everybody. A powerful ruin looms above the small Baroque town of Dürnstein, while the blue tower of the monastery church is a landmark of Wachau. In the small village of Pöchlarn you will board again. After the farewell gala dinner, you start “sailing” back to Passau.

Day 8: Departure from Passau

Every journey draws to an end. Once again you enjoy on deck the first sunbeams and the peaceful silence of the Danube Valley. Take a last sight at the Schlögener Schlinge (“Great Loop”) before you arrive relaxed at Passau.

Normandie/SE-Manon/Prinzessin Katharina: Arrival: approx at 10 a.m., disembarkation half an hour later. We recommend to arrange connecting trips from noon onwards.

Arlene II: Arrival: approx at 11 a.m., disembarkation half an hour later. We recommend to arrange connecting trips from noon onwards.

Good to know
  • To bring your own bike: on request only – due to lack of space on sundeck.
  • Languages on board: German, English
  • Cycle tours: all distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours. When a guest does not want to cycle one day, she/he can skip the bike tour and relax on board while cruising to the next harbor. The bike tours are individual, at your own pace, without a tour guide, but with daily briefings on board and detailed bicycle maps and directions. All cycle tours can be classified as being easy.
  • Luggage: we recommend rain-wear, bicycle helmet, sunhat and sneakers. Please be aware that the cabin storage space is very limited.
  • Smoking: the interior of the ship is a non-smoking zone: smoking is only allowed on the sun deck. As a safety measure, a statutory smoking ban applies in all cabins; this means that all cabins and rooms on board are non-smoking areas.
  • Land excursions: we offer an optional (surcharge – not included in the tour price) excursion program which can be booked directly on board at the cruise director only. Together with your travel documents you will get a brief description. Depending on the number of participants some excursions could be carried out in 2 languages (German/ English).
  • Routing/Program: basically, we reserve the right to make changes of routing and program. In case of flood or low tide, the shipping company reserves the right to bridge parts of passages by buses. In extreme situations, the shipping company reserves the right to cancel the journey on short notice. No legal right shall be constituted of both situations. The same applies for officially ordered – previously not announced – repair work on locks or bridges. Please be aware that a cruise ship on the Danube is not only your hotel but also a machine, working with engine power also during the night. Especially crossing locks and bridges – and the preparation work – may cause noise. If you are sensitive please bring your own ear plugs.
  • Travel documents: EU-citizens (without special situations like dual citizenship, main residence abroad or a limited-validity passport) are required to have a valid passport or ID-card, not expiring within six(6) months of the return of your cruise. We kindly ask non-EU citizens, EU-nationals with multiple citizenship or anybody who has to respect special legal entry requirements for the country to visit, to inform about visa and entry documents at the competent embassy.
  • This trip is not suitable for guests with reduced mobility.

Prices & information

Prices & availability

Below you see an overview of the available (blue) dates; the yellow dot means that this date has 2 or less cabins available, orange is ‘on request’ and red means that on this date there aren’t any cabins available. Then click on the preferred date. After this, choose your ship (some tours have only one ship, and therefore there is no choice), the number of cabins in the required (and available) category, any desired additional products, and ‘local costs’ (such as special dietary needs, which you usually pay for onboard). On the right side, you’ll find the ‘Booking Summary.’ After completing your preferences and necessary information click ‘Book now’ to finalize your booking.

  • Available
  • 2 or less available
  • On request
  • Not available
Departure date -

Choose preferred ship

Please select your cabin(s)

Pricing overview - 2021
Cabin type For Season A Season B Season C Season D Season E
2-Bed lower deck front/astern* 2 pers. € 699 € 799 € 899 Not available Not available 2-Bed lower deck 2 pers. € 799 € 899 € 999 € 999 € 949 Single cabin lower deck 1 pers. € 1099 € 1199 € 1299 Not available Not available 2-Bed Middle deck 2 pers. Not available Not available Not available € 1199 € 1099 2-Bed Upper deck 2 pers. € 999 € 1099 € 1299 € 1299 € 1249 3-Bed Upper deck 3 pers. € 799 € 899 € 999 Not available Not available Single Upper deck 1 pers. € 134 € 1449 € 1549 Not available Not available
Pricing overview - 2020
Cabin type For Season A Season B Season C
2-Bed lower deck 2 pers. € 799 € 889 € 929 2-Bed Upper deck Astern* 2 pers. € 839 € 929 € 969 2-Bed Upper deck 2 pers. € 949 € 1039 € 1079 Suite Upper deck (only on Arlene II) 2 pers. Not available € 1259 € 1299 Single Upper deck 1 pers. € 1249 € 1339 € 1379
Included in this tour

7 nights in outside cabins with private facilities and air conditioning

Program according to itinerary from/to Passau

Captains greeting and Welcome cocktail

Full board: 7x breakfast-buffet, 6x lunch snack on board (non cyclists) or packed lunch for cyclists, 6x afternoon coffee break, 6x 3-course-dinner and 1x farewell-dinner with farewell-drink

Bed linen and towels on board

Daily cleaning of the cabin

Normandie/Prinzessin Katharina: On-board musician

Tour guide on board (does not cycle with the group)

Detailed road book (one per cabin)

GPS Tracks

Daily information meeting for bike tour instructions

Port and Tourist taxes

SGR guarantee scheme applicable

Tour operators are obliged by applicable Dutch and European law to secure customer received funds and payments in the event of their own insolvency or bankruptcy (in accordance with Section 513a of the Dutch Civil Code (Burgerlijk Wetboek) and EU Directive 2015/2302).

Boat Bike Tours (Chamber of Commerce register number 3714 7084) is a participant of SGR (Stichting Garantiefonds Reisgelden) and is registered under number 3.734. This registration can be checked on www.sgr.nl.

The participating tour operators are subject to the guarantee protection of the SGR insolvency guarantee system that is required by law in the Netherlands. Under SGR’s warranty, the prepaid travel sums will be reimbursed to the end user if the tour operator is financially unable to meet its contractual obligations. If the agreement includes transportation and the destination has already been reached, the return trip will be arranged.

Extended warranty policy during the Corona COVID-19 crisis:
“Corona Voucher” with SGR protection

 In the context of the exceptional circumstances resulting from the Corona COVID-19 crisis, all registered participants in SGR may issue so-called “Corona Vouchers” if the organizing tour operator is unable to carry out a tour due to official measures and other serious circumstances of force majeure, and therefore have to cancel the trip.

This means that a Corona voucher offered to the customer by Boat Bike Tours is accepted under the protection of the SGR guarantee system, and – for this reason – all payments and deposits made by a customer are and remain secured.

On March 16, 2020, the Board of Directors of the SGR adopted the following resolution:

  1. As of March 16, 2020, SGR will consider vouchers from tour operators participating in SGR as covered by SGR within the meaning of Article 3 of the SGR Guarantee System, subject to points 2 through 7 of this Decision.
  2. This cover only applies if the voucher fulfills the model voucher stipulated by SGR, and only for vouchers issued in the event of a cancellation of trips in connection with the inability to carry out the trip in connection with the occurrence of unavoidable and exceptional circumstances as a result of the Corona COVID-19 Virus and provided that the value of the voucher is clearly filled out and the voucher contains the name “Corona voucher”.
  3. The value of the voucher cannot be higher than the payment already made for the trip, which had to be canceled due to the Corona COVID-19 virus and for which the SGR guarantee originally applied.
  4. The voucher must contain an express validity period of a maximum of one (1) year after the date of issue.
  5. The voucher must state that the SGR guarantee system applies.
  6. This decision must be communicated on the SGR Website with a clear explanation of the particularities, timing and enforcement of Article 3 (10) (g) of the guarantee system for other vouchers and traveler checks.
  7. This decision regarding the right to issue of a special Corona voucher with a guarantee from SGR is temporary and expires on June 1, 2020, subject to the possibility for the Executive Board to extend this period after approval by the Supervisory Board.

This decision was approved by the SGR Board of Directors and is dated March 16, 2020.

Note: The above translations about SGR are not official SGR translations. SGR only communicates in Dutch and English. The Dutch text on the SGR guarantee system is generally binding.

Excluded in this tour

Transfers to/from the docking place in Passau

Rental bicycle or e-bike (optional)

Other transfers

Parking fee

Entrance fees & excursions

Drinks on board

Personal insurances

Gratuities (at your discretion)

Additional options & information - 2021
  • Rental bicycle (incl. rental bike insurance): € 75 per week/person (with hand brake, coaster breaking hubs or freewheel hubs (subject to availability – please indicate as non-binding customer request when booking)
  • Rental E-Bike (incl. rental bike insurance): € 165 per week/person (with hand brake, coaster breaking hubs or freewheel hubs (subject to availability – please indicate as non-binding customer request when booking; only on request, limited number of e-bikes available, early bookings strongly recommended.
  • You can find a description of the bicycles when you click on ship.
  • Safe on the way, helmet required in Slovakia!: We advise you wear a bike helmet (in Austria children under 12 yrs are obligated to wear a bike helmet, in Slovakia children till 15 yrs and all bikers (except in built-up areas) are obligated to wear a helmet. Please bring your own helmet. You can also buy a helmet (UVEX I-VO) for €40 p.p. on board (limited stock).

 

Parking in Passau:

  • Parking space inclusive transfer to/from ship    68
  • Parking garage inclusive transfer to/from ship  79
    (registration form in the travel-documents, payable on site)

 

Minimum number of participants: 80 guests (Prinzessin Katharina) oder 90 guests (SE-Manon) (must have been reached within 21 days prior to departure).

Legal notice:
Boat Bike Tours is not the operator of this tour; this is a so called ‘partner tour’. Tour operator is: SE Tours GmbH, Bremerhaven, Germany. Other conditions may apply to this tour: further details on request.

Additional options & information - 2020
  • Rental bicycle (incl. rental bike insurance): € 75 per week/person
  • Rental E-Bike (incl. rental bike insurance): € 165 per week/person (only on request, limited number of e-bikes available, early bookings strongly recommended.
  • You can find a description of the bicycles when you click on ship.
  • Safe on the way, helmet required in Slovakia!: We advise you wear a bike helmet (in Austria children under 12 yrs are obligated to wear a bike helmet, in Slovakia children till 15 yrs and all bikers (except in built-up areas) are obligated to wear a helmet. Please bring your own helmet. You can also buy a helmet (UVEX I-VO) for €40 p.p. on board (limited stock).

 

Parking in Passau:

  • Parking space inclusive transfer to/from ship    68
  • Parking garage inclusive transfer to/from ship  79
    (registration form in the travel-documents, payable on site)

 

Minimum number of participants: 50 guests (must have been reached within 21 days prior to departure).

Legal notice:
Boat Bike Tours is not the operator of this tour; this is a so called ‘partner tour’. Tour operator is: SE Tours GmbH, Bremerhaven, Germany. Other conditions may apply to this tour: further details on request.

Travel during corona time

On our tours we make sure that you can travel safely! We follow all possible safety measures on board by observing hygiene rules, equipping staff with face masks and with extra cleaning and sufficient ventilation. All guests, crew and tour leaders complete a health declaration in advance, and during the trip we take care that everyone stays healthy!
For more information and the latest updates click here.



Reviews

Danube: Passau – Budapest – Passau Rated 8.2 out of 10 based on 28 reviews
4 stars

kenneth pearce

good experience all round, accomodations, food and service on board was good. only negative was that some of the instructions/directions for the cycling parts could have been better, and a few of the cycling sections were on narrow busy roads.

5 stars

Martin Timmers

GREAT TRIP. Everything was as expected. Petra was awesome. The biking, sailing,crew, and food were amazing. Went with a group of 20. I would recommend this tour.

4 stars

Bill Wells

We were on the Arlene 11 and had a great time. The ship staff, food and itinerary were great. We enjoyed our week long tour and were always treated well. Only issue would be a little noisy over engine area and not much ice for beverages. Thanks Bill and Cathy

4 stars

Debbie Paraskeva Wonnacott

We were mostly very happy with everything. We did feel snacks upon returning from a day of biking would have been nice, more than a small piece of cake. In the morning my husband asked for a second bottle of water and he was told he couldn’t have it. We felt that was a little too cheesy.

Read all reviews on Trustpilot

Available ships for this tour

Ship Normandie Danube
max. 100 passengers
51 cabins
2 tours available with this ship
Ship Arlene II Danube
max. 98 passengers
50 cabins
2 tours available with this ship
Premium Experience the higher levels of comfort, smaller groups and extra’s.
Ship Prinzessin Katharina Danube
max. 140 passengers
71 cabins
2 tours available with this ship
Premium Experience the higher levels of comfort, smaller groups and extra’s.
Ship SE-Manon Danube
max. 150 passengers
75 cabins
1 tours available with this ship

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Danube: Passau – Budapest – Passau

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