Vienna to Budapest.

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
Posts: 53
Joined: 13 Jan 2007, 3:38pm

Vienna to Budapest.

Postby Baldric » 21 Jan 2007, 2:30pm

I was thinking of cyling some of the Danube this year and have only ever toured in Blighty before, so I am after any advice.

First of all do I need to inform the airline that I am taking my bike or do I just turn up with it?

What would be the best time of year to go, I was thinking September or late May, but any other suggestions would be gratefully accepted?

Will I need to book accommodation in advance or can you find places to stay as you go?




Postby ThomasDylan » 21 Jan 2007, 3:59pm


This route seems to be popular at the moment :-)

If you're flying with a budget airline, it's best to inform them in advance that you'll have a bike. easyJet, for example charge £15 each way for a bike. You should also check what your airline requires you to do with disassembly of your bike. It's a leap of faith with a bike, so make sure you're well insured.

I'm based in Budapest, and of the two times you say are possible, I'd advise May rather than September. Spring is very nice here - usually - whilst September can still be uncomfortably warm.

There's a good guide book by Cicerone that covers the entire route to Budapest right from the Danube's source in Germany. Do a search of the board and you'll find the link I posted last week to the book at Amazon. As an overview it's great, but you will still need good maps.

You will experience fantastic quality differences on the actual path. In Austria it will generally be very good, but once you get to Slovakia things will decline. You'll also find a smattering of German helpful there. The Hungarian stretch can also be poor too. Nothing insurmountable, just a surprise after the Austrian parts.

As I said to the others, be sure to look me up when you reach here.

FWIW, I intend to do the path in the "wrong" direction from Austria to source next year. I endure enough of Hungary's shortcomings on a day-to-day basis, despite being glad to be here - most of the time!

Accommodation can be booked, but I think you'll be OK turning up on the spot - unless you intend arriving late in the day. Don't forget that life over here - along the entire route - tends to shut down, retail-wise, after midday on Saturday until Monday morning, so Sundays might be best pre-booked.

Enjoy the ride.

Posts: 156
Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 8:21pm

Postby V4281051 » 21 Jan 2007, 4:00pm

May and September will be fine...August and perhaps end of July will be very busy....weekends are also busy....Youth hostels in Vienna and a few in Budapest....Wombats Youth hostel is close to the Train Station....WestBahnhof...That youth hostel is the best I've ever stayed in open til 4am!
Inform the company you are flying with before you book the ticket..
Not that difficult to go by train from Rotterdam to Vienna....You can catch a train back from Budapest to Vienna quite easily but you need to book it on the day before...Try the Marco Polo Youth Hostel in Budapest....near the main station

Posts: 408
Joined: 28 Jan 2007, 2:48pm

Postby Tony » 28 Jan 2007, 2:57pm

In Vienna, some of the student halls of residence double up as cheaper hotels out of term time. Double beds are made up by adding a board at...approximately the same height, and breakfasts are subject to rationing. I found my spot through the Bahnhof hotel booking office.
If in Budapest, make a point of trying the thermal waters on Margit Sziget or at Gelert.