Danube Bike Trail 1
2e editie, 2012
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Cycline Danube Bike Trail 1 - Danube Bike Trail 2, Von Passau to Vienna
Danube Bike Trail 3, From Vienna to Budapest
Danube Bike Trail 4, From Budapest to the Black Sea
Danube Bike Trail 1: Germany: From Donaueschingen to Passau
From its headwaters in the Black Forest of south-western Germany, the Danube flows through some of the most beautiful landscapes in Europe. Pristine flood-plains, picturesque villages and small towns, and a wealth of cultural landmarks line the river as it begins its long march to the distant Black Sea.
These tranquil valleys are also ideal for cycling. In recent years, many of the paths and lanes along the river have been paved specifically for bicycle tourists. As a result, almost the entire route follows smooth quiet roads that make it ideal for families with children.
This bicycle touring atlas includes detailed maps of the countryside and of many cities and towns, precise route descriptions, information about historic and cultural sites as well as background information and a comprehensive list of overnight accommodations. The one thing this atlas cannot provide is fine cycling weather, but we hope you encounter nothing but sunshine and gentle tailwinds.
The Danube is not merely one of Europe's great rivers. At 2,888 kilometers from the source of the Breg and 2,845 kilometers from the confluence of the Breg, Brigach and Danube Spring in Donaueschingen, it is the second longest river in Europe; only the Volga (3,534 kilometers) is longer. It is one thousand kilometers longer than the Rhine, and collects water from a catchment basin that is more than four times as large. The Danube flows through or along the borders of ten nations and has long served as one of the most important transportation links between Europe and Asia.
The Danube leaves Germany at Passau, the three-rivers city situated at the confluence of the Danube, Inn and Ilz rivers. They join to make the Danube qualify as a great river worthy of legend and fame.
About the route
The Danube cycling route between Donaueschingen and Passau is about 595 kilometers in length, not including alternative routes and side excursions.
Traffic and road quality
Most of the route follows quiet country lanes or dedicated cycling paths. Sections with heavier traffic are rare and usually short. With only a few exceptions, the roads and paths have a hard surface. Gravel sections are usually in good condition. Because the route follows the course of the river, it is almost completely flat. Excursions away from the river may quickly head uphill, however. Because the route often crosses flood plain areas, you may be forced to use alternative routes when the river is high.
Route markers along the Danube bicycle route are generally reliable and good. Markers indicate direction whereever the route makes a turn and at larger intersections and forks.
From Donaueschingen to Neustadt the signs are yellow with green script. Downstream from Neustadt the signs are white with green script. After Kelheim the signs also bear the slogan "Tour de Baroque" and the German Danube icon alternates with the lute-player seen on the Tour de Baroque signs.