On arrival there should be time to tour this historic city, taking in sights such as Wenceslas Square and the Old Town.
We transfer 150km to Ceske Budejovice to collect our bikes. Our first day is a relatively short one to warm us up, as we cycle to Cesky Krumlov on the Vltava River. A feature of the old town here are the narrow, crooked streets and the Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture. There may be time to visit Cesky Krumlov Castle, one of the largest in Central Europe, which overlooks the town from its strategic position on a horseshoe bend in the river. Ride approx. 30km.
Leaving Cesky Krumlov behind us we head out into the hilly countryside. Our route flattens out as we enter the Trebon Basin, a lowland area of forests, meadows and lakes. Our destination is Trebon, a mediaeval town of Renaissance architecture, now also known as a spa town. There is also a neo-gothic tomb set in an English-style Park plus a good number of cafes and restaurants in which to relax and enjoy a hearty meal. Many local dishes here make use of the famous Trebon Carp.
Ride approx 55km
Today we pass a number of man-made lakes as we follow the sections of the Greenways Trail, part of a network of hiking and cycling trails in the Czech Republic and Austria. This takes us to the northern point in Austria, Perslak, and along into a densely forested area known as the Czech Canada National Park. Our ride finishes at the Renaissance town of Telc, registered on the UNESCO Cultural Heritage List in 1992. From here we transfer to Znojmo on the banks of the river Dyje, often seen as the gateway to the wine-making area of South Moravia. Ride approx 70km
We discover the the rich fertile flatland of the region, home to an abundance of wine cellars. With a bit of luck we should have the opportunity to visit some and taste some of the local wines as we cycle towards Mikulov on the Austrian border. The town's proud history is still clear to see in the castle, town square and surrounding architecture. Ride approx 70km
Entering Austria at the old checkpoint in Mikulov we have our first experience of the vineyards, fields and small villages of the north east of the country. We make our way to the market town of Mistelbach from where we transfer the final 47km to Vienna. Once checked into our accommodation the centre of the city awaits, just a short metro ride away. Austria's capital is a hive of architecture, history and culture with a lively cafe and bar culture and great range of restaurants.
Ride approx 45km
We join the Danube Cycle Path, following a quiet route out of the city and into the Donauauen National Park, past the red-tiled turrets of Castle Orth and the chateau at Eckartsau. We cross the border at the town of Hainburg and enter Slovakia, winding our way towards the capital Bratislava. On arrival we have time to discover our new surroundings, including the narrow cobbled streets of the old town, as well as our first taste of Slovak cuisine. Ride approx 70km
The Danube is again our guide today as we return to the cycle path and head out into the forested hills around Bratislava. Crossing into Hungary we ride through peaceful rolling countryside before arriving in Halaszi, a small village of around 3000 inhabitants. From here we transfer to our hotel in peaceful Mosonmagyarovar. Ride approx 50km
The plain of 'Little Alfold' has some of Hungary's most productive farmland and offers a relaxing cycle en route to Gyor, one of the most important cities in the Hungarian lowlands. From Gyor we transfer to Esztergom, which was once the capital of the country, until the seat of power was transferred to Buda in the mid 13th century. Ride approx 40km
We leave Esztergom mid morning, allowing time for a quick visit to the Basilica for those that wish. We begin the ride with a 4km section of a cycle path alongside the Danube before joining the road. Our route meanders over rolling countryside and through rural villages, the most notable of which is Visegrad, arriving in the artists' colony of Szentendre for lunch, where our cycling ends. From here we transfer approximately 50 minutes to Budapest. The remainder of the day is free to explore Budapest.
Fly to London.