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Cycle the Danube from Germany to Budapest with a Cicerone Guidebook

Cover of The Danube Cycleway Volume 1
28 Jan 2015
17.2 x 11.6 x 1.5cm
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The Danube Cycleway Volume 1

From the source in the Black Forest to Budapest

by Mike Wells
Book published by Cicerone Press

The first in a two-volume set, this guidebook describes cycling the first 1271km of the Danube river from its source in the Black Forest to Budapest, passing through Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary. Suitable for all levels of cyclist, the route visits the great cities of Vienna and Bratislava before arriving in the Hungarian capital.

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Size: 17.2 x 11.6 x 1.5cm
Weight: 300g

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This guidebook covers cycling the first 1270km of a long-distance cycle route that follows the entire course of the Danube, Europe's second longest river. The route starts at the Danube's source in Donauschingen in Germany's Black Forest, leading to the vibrant city of Budapest in Hungary. This guide is the first in a two-volume set exploring the entire length of the Danube.

The Danube Cycle Way has become the most popular holiday cycle touring route in mainland Europe. Leading through Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary, the route visits spectacular gorges, hilltop castles, vineyard-clad hillsides and medieval towns. The route's highlights are in the three great imperial cities of Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest, where majestic royal palaces, soaring cathedrals and world-famous museums and galleries await.

Suitable for all levels of cyclist; from the experienced to families who are new to this type of journey, the route is on a gentle downhill gradient, is mostly off-road and uses well-surfaced and dedicated cycle tracks or quiet country roads. The guidebook includes maps, guidance on the plentiful accommodation and places to stop for food and drink en route, as well as details on the sights to see along the way, making it the perfect companion to the Danube Cycle Way.

  • The route is divided into 23 seperate stages, with scope for tailoring different length stages according to each cyclist's needs
  • Includes helpful and clear mapping for every stage
  • combination of practical information, evocative route descriptions and backgound details enhance this world-famous cycle route
  • Activities
    multi-day cycle touring
  • Seasons
    Apart from the upper part of Stage 1 in the Black Forest, where snow may lie until April, the route can be cycled at any time of year, but is best between April and October.
  • Centres
    A point-to-point route with no particular bases.
  • Difficulty
    A straightforward cycle ride, mostly off-road on well-surfaced (mainly asphalt) cycle tracks with virtually no gradients, except for a steady 500m ascent to reach the start. Suitable for all levels of cyclist, on all types of cycle, though racing cyclists may wish to use alternative routes to avoid a few short sections of gravel surface.
  • Must See
    Black Forest, Danube sinkholes, Blue lagoon, Ulm cathedral spire (world's highest), Donaudurchbruch gorge, Regensburg medieval altstadt, King Ludwig's Walhalla, Passau, Melk and Klosterneuburg abbeys, Wachau vineyards, Wien (Hofburg, Schönbrunn and Belvedere Palaces, cathedral, Spanish Riding School), Prater Ferris wheel, Bratislava, Esztergom basilica, Danube bend, Budapest (Fishermen's bastion, St Mathias church, Europe's largest synagogue)

June 2016

p116 end of line 12; Follow road winding through village then turn L at T-junction (Am Krautgarten) should be ......turn R at T-junction......

p233 last line; to run between main road R and river L should be .....main road L and river R......


The phone number provided for The Map Shop in Upton upon Severn is printed incorrectly and should read 01684 593146


May 2016

A full set of GPX files for the route described in this guide is now available free to download to owners of the book.

You can download them by following this link:


March 2106

The length of the Danube is given in the Introduction as 2888km. This was based on an earlier measurement of the river before 20th-century shortenings were taken into account and that the author now believes that 2772km (as stated in Vol 2) to be a better estimate of the Danube's length.


Natural environment
The route
Getting there and back
Food and drink
Amenities and services
What to take
Safety and emergencies
About this guide
The route
Stage 1 Martinskapelle to Donaueschingen
Stage 2 Donaueschingen to Tuttlingen
Stage 3 Tuttlingen to Sigmaringen
Stage 4 Sigmaringen to Riedlingen
Stage 5 Riedlingen to Ehingen
Stage 6 Ehingen to Ulm
Stage 7 Ulm to Lauingen
Stage 8 Lauingen to Donauwörth
Stage 9 Donauwörth to Ingolstadt
Stage 10 Ingolstadt to Kelheim
Stage 11 Kelheim to Regensburg
Stage 12 Regensburg to Straubing
Stage 13 Straubing to Deggendorf
Stage 14 Deggendorf to Passau
Stage 15 Passau to Aschach
Stage 16 Aschach to Linz
Stage 17 Linz to Mauthausen
Stage 18 Mauthausen to Grein
Stage 19 Grein to Melk
Stage 20 Melk to Krems
Stage 21 Krems to Tulln
Stage 22 Tulln to Vienna
Stage 23 Vienna to Bratislava (Slovakia)
Stage 24 Bratislava to Mosonmagyaróvár
Stage 25 Mosonmagyaróvár to Győr
Stage 26 Győr to Komárom
Stage 27 Komárom to Esztergom
Stage 28 Esztergom to Szentendre
Stage 29 Szentendre to Budapest
Appendix A Stage summary table
Appendix B Facilities summary table
Appendix C Language glossary
Appendix D Useful contacts
Appendix E Tourist information offices
Appendix F Youth hostels
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