Stockerau - Mikulov (77 km / 48 miles)
The route begins in the town Stockerau, 18 km northwest of Vienna
on the other side of the Danube (best reached by commuter train,
though it is possible to bike). Our route leads through the region
of Lower Austria through undulating terrain to Ernstbrunn, then
over the big hill of the day (Leiser Berge Naturalpark), and onward
border crossing into the South Moravia region of the Czech Republic.
From there the trail leads through the vineyards and lowlands to
Overnight in Mikulov.
Drnholec - Brno (52 km / 32 miles)
Start with a short 15-minute car transfer to the nearby
village of Drnholec. From there the cycle route goes through
the wine-making region of South Moravia, past the Palava Hills,
a Protected Landscape Area and Biosphere Reserve, which will
serve as the main panorama during the trip today. You will
pass the town of Zidlochovice with its chateau, where the division
of Czechoslovakia into the Czech Republic and Slovakia was
negotiated. Before arriving in Brno the journey goes through
landscape, around the new modern shopping malls and industrial
outskirts of Brno, the Czech Republic’s second-largest city
Overnight in Brno.
Brno - Moravsky Kras (43 km / 26 miles)
The journey through Brno demands concentration and caution
(Brno is a bit deficient with its cycling trails). Brno is
famous for its architecture; historically it was closer both
physically and even culturally to Vienna than to Prague. Brno
is home of the famous Villa Tugendhat, a 20th-century architectural
treasure. The first village outside of Brno is the delightful
Bilovice nad Svitavou, the scene of the famous opera ‘Lisky
Bystrousky’ by Leos Janacek. By now you are climbing into the
Moravian Karst, a region of limestone cliffs, deep valleys,
and spectacular caves. You might finish today’s short stage
with a journey down the underground river Punkva, and a view
from the bottom of the deepest natural abyss in the Czech Republic,
called Macocha (depth 187,5 m).
Overnight in the Moravsky Kras area.
Moravsky Kras - Olomouc (63 km / 39 miles)
This part of the trip is the most demanding not only in length
but also elevation gain due to the Drahan Hills. Our reward
will be a visit to Plumlov, a small town with a spectacular,
if unfinished, Baroque castle on a rocky outcrop and the opportunity
to bathe in the cool, refreshing Plumlov reservoir. Through
Prostejov we get to Olomouc, the second most famous town for
historic monuments in the Czech Republic after Prague. A trip
to the Premyslid palace or St. Wenceslas Cathedral is an experience
not to be missed; the ornate Trinity Column in the square is
designated as a world heritage site by UNESCO.
Overnight in Olomouc.
Olomouc - Teplice nad Becvou (51 km / 31 miles)
After sightseeing around Olomouc the route leads through the
lowlands of the Morava River to the town of Prerov, and from
there you begin to gradually climb towards Lipnik nad Becvou,
with its old town walls, Jewish cemetery and synagogue. Lipnik
Becvou lies at the southwestern end of the great pass known
as the Moravian Gate. High above it lies imposing Helfstyn
Castle, unique not only for its great size but also for its
rich cultural calendar, dominated by the annual meeting of
artistic blacksmithsm, the Hefaiston, at the end of September.
After the uphill journey to Helfstyn we ride on to the spa
town of Teplice nad Becvou, where you have the opportunity
to visit the Zbrasovska aragonite cave, or stroll the spa grounds
and sip the invigorating waters.
Overnight in Teplice nad Becvou.
Teplice nad Becvou - Stramberk (40 km / 25 miles)
From the mineral rich spas of Teplice you travel on
to Stary Jicin with its old castle ruins, then on to Novy Jicin
with its arcades and Renaissance chateau. From here you
journey just a short distance to the destination Stramberk,
a small town famed for its spectacular tower, part of the old
Gothic castle. Local culinary specialities include the famous
Stramberk Ears, commemorating a bloody incursion by the Tatars
in 1241. Stramberk also features a museum devoted to the work
of Zdenek Burian, whose paintings depicting the Stone Age are
commonly found in textbooks and museums around the world.
Overnight in Stramberk.
Stramberk - Cesky Tesin/Polsky Cieszyn (63
km / 39 miles)
The first stop of the day is in Koprivnice, home of the Tatra
autmobile works, which features an excellent technical museum
displaying many interesting antique cars. Hukvaldy is another
delightful stop on the route, a lovely small town famous for
ruined castle and also as the birthplace of the composer Leos
Janacek. His original home, now a protected monument, houses
an exhibition. The route then
takes you through the larger town of Frydek-Mistek to and then
on to Tesin, a town divided in two by the Czech - Polish border:
Cesky Tesin on the Czech side, and Polsky Cieszyn on the Polish
Overnight in Tesin/Cieszyn.
Cesky Tesin/Polsky Cieszyn – Jasienica (43 km / 27 miles)
The cycle route on the Polish side leads through farmland and
forests to the town of
Jasienica. Transfer by car from Jasienica to Oswiecim (Auschwitz),
the terrible concentration camp of WWII.
Overnight in Oswiecim.
Cycling Oswiecim – Babice – Krakow (25 km/ 15 miles)
This day allows you to spend more time in Oswiecim. The short
ride is mainly flat and
finishes in Babice at an interesting outdoor museum of traditional
Polish architecture and
crafts. Transfer by car from Babice to Krakow.
Overnight in Krakow.
10 - Krakow
In Krakow you will probably want to spend more than just
one day: Wawel Castle, the Old Market Square, the Kazimierz
Jewish quarter, or the town walls and Royal Way could easily
take a day. To really soak up the atmosphere of this vibrant
city you must get into the cafes or pubs, theatres or clubs,
and that takes more than a day too...
Just outside of Krakow you could visit the salt mine in Wieliczka,
which has been in
constant operation since the Middle Ages. It includes vast
chambers ornately carved out
of rock salt.