ExpeditionPlus! Stage 2 Bicycling the Danube from Budapest to the Black Sea
To bicycle the Danube in its entirety check out the itinerary and details here.View Day-by-Day ItineraryHide Day-by-Day Itinerary
Day 1: (Friday, July 11) - Arrive in Budapest
Highlights: Sites in Budapest, Danube river in the city
Split in two by the Danube, Buda Castle sits on the west bank high above the river and Pest (say "Pesht") is on the lowland across the river. You'll probably want to come a couple days early to explore this historic city. You'll want to visit the castle, the parliament, and just wander the banks of the Danube which so dominates this city. We'll fit you with a bicycle this evening and have a welcome drink together.
Day 2: (Saturday, July 12) - Bicycle down the Danube to Kalocsa
Highlights: Cycling an island of the Danube
The Danube divides into two channels south of Budapest, forming an island nearly 30 miles long. We bicycle this island to Rackeve, once a part of Serbia and site of a beautiful Greek orthodox church - historic evidence that we are nearly in the Balkans! We are in Kalocsa tonight, the paprika capital of Hungary.
Estimated mileage: 134 km (83 miles).
Day 3: (Sunday, July 13) - Kalocsa to Mohacs
Highlights: Szekszard wines and Danube-Drava National Park
We pedal through the lowlands north of the confluence of the Drava and Danube Rivers today, a marshy area near the border with Croatia. Szekszard is famous for it strong red wines. Mohacs, where we will be tonight, was the site of an important battle against the Turks in 1526 when the Ottomans defeated the Hungarian army and began a century and a half occupation of the region.
Estimated mileage: 91 km (57 miles)
Day 4: (Monday, July 14) - Mohacs, Hungary to Osijek, Croatia
Highlights: Crossing into Croatia
We cross the border into Croatia today, a lost corner of the plains of Hungary that have gathered Germans, Greeks, Serbs, and Croatians over the centuries. This is a small wine-producing region centered on Osijek, where we will spend the afternoon and evening. Osijek is situated on the Drava River. Distance: 70 km (43 miles).
Day 5: (Tuesday, July 15 ) - Osijek, Croatia to Novi Sad, Serbia
Highlights: Bicycling into Serbia
We continue through this corner of Croatian Slavonia today on our way to Serbia, the core of Marshall Tito's Yugoslavia. Novi Sad is the second largest city in Serbia.
Estimated mileage: 115 km (71 miles)
Day 6: (Wednesday, July 16) - Novi Sad to Belgrade, Serbia
Highlights: Belgrade, capital of Serbia and formerly the capital of Yugoslavia
A short ride today takes us to Belgrade. You'll have the afternoon to relax and explore this capital city, with its Kalemegdan Fortress overlooking the confluence of the Sava with the Danube, with its relaxed cafes and delicious pastry. Distance: 55 km (34 miles)
Day 7: (Thursday, July 17) - Belgrade to Golubac, Serbia
Highlights: Pedaling to the Iron Gates of the Danube
We've traced the path of the Danube east, then south through central Hungary. As the river forms the boundary with Hungary and Serbia it turns eastward to push its way through the great mountain chain of the Transylvanian Alps. Here, the famous "Iron Gates" of the Danube formed over millions of years. We follow the river through Serbia today and stay the night right where the Danube enters the "Iron Gates." Distance: 127 km (79 miles)
Day 8: (Friday, July 18) - Golubac, Serbia to Portile de Fier, Romania
Highlights: Bicycling the Iron Gates of the Danube
The great backward "S" arch of the Carpathian Mountains (Transylvanian Alps) sweeps through the border lands of Romania, Bulgaria and Serbia forming the only real obstacle as the Danube flows toward the Black Sea. Here a great gorge - the "Iron Gates" has been carved through the mountains. We follow the river through this gorge to our destination across the river in Romania. Distance: 126 km (79 miles)
Day 9: (Saturday, July 19) - Portile de Fier to Calafat, Romania
Highlights: The Plains of Walachia, Romania
We are out of the Iron Gates now and the majestic Transylvanian Alps tower above us far to the north. We pedal through densely settled farm lands in Romania on the north side of the Danube. Distance: 103km (65 miles)
Day 10: (Sunday, July 20) - Calafat to Corabia, Romania
Highlights: Bicycling the plains of Wallachia, Romania
We continue through farmlands and small villages on this low-lying plain of the Danube River in Romania. Distance: 146 km (91 miles)
Day 11: (Monday, July 21) - Corabia to Ruse, Bulgaria
Highlights: Bicycle lowland Romania
Our route today takes us to Giurgiu on the Romanian border and then across the Romanian-Bulgarian "Friendship Bridge", completed in 1954. We arrive in one of the most famous Bulgarian towns, where we will be for the next two nights. Approximate distance: about 162 km (101 miles).
Day 12: (Tuesday, July 22)- Rest day in Ruse
Highlights: Ruse, 19th and 20th-century Neo-Baroque and Neo-Rococo architecture
We have a rest day in Ruse today; enjoy a walk around the center of town. Ruse is the most important river port of Bulgaria and is famous for its 19th to 20th century Neo-Baroque and Neo-Rococo architecture.
Distance: no biking today
Day 13: (Wednesday, July 23) - Ruse, Bulgaria to Calarasi, Romania
Highlights: Bicycling Downwhill through Walachia
We cross the "Friendship Bridge" again this morning and re-enter Romania (keep your passports out!) We'll be in Calarasi this evening. Distance: 163 km (101 miles).
Day 14: (Thursday, July 24) - Calarasi to Braila, Romania
Highlights: Bicycling through the countryside along the Danube
We follow the river or different branches of the river through numerous farm villages to Braila. This is a long ride today but we'll start early and take our time as the ride is entirely flat. Distance: 170 km (105 miles).
Day 15: (Friday, July 25) - Braila to Tulcea
Highlights: The Heart of the Danube Delta
Our ride today begins with a ferry crossing of the Danube; we arrive in Tulcea (say "tool-chuh") this afternoon. Not only have we traveled nearly 3,000 kilometers but we have also traveled back in time nearly three thousand years as Tulcea was inhabited by the ancient Greeks who built their settlement on that of earlier settlers dating to the 7th century BC. At various times in history Tulcea was controlled by the Byzantines, the Genoese, and the Ottoman Turks.
Distance: about 96 km (59 miles).
Day 16: (Saturday, July 26) - Boat from Tulcea to Sulina
Highlights: Ferry along the Sulina Branch of the Danube
We say goodbye to our bicycles this morning and catch a boat to complete our last leg down the Danube to Sulina. We'll take a swim in the Black Sea and enjoy an evening on the seashore.
Day 17: (Sunday, July 27) - Transfer to Bucharest
Highlights: Sunrise over the Black Sea
We catch an early boat this morning and then a bus to Bucharest for our last evening together.
Day 18: (Monday, July 28) - Tour ends today in Bucharest
Highlights: Tour ends with a transfer to the Bucharest Airport
Our journey ends this morning with a transfer to the airport. Alternatively, maybe you are headed into the interior of Romania to explore Transylvania, the land of Dracula. Have a great trip!
HighlightsIron Gates of the Danube, boat ride to the Black Sea, Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest, Long, easy ridesKeep in Mind: We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.
Includes18 days, 17 nights accommodation, welcome drink in Budapest, 13 dinners (excluding drinks), all breakfasts plus "The Usual""The Usual" (Included with every ExperiencePlus! tour)
CountriesHungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria
Begin/EndBudapest, Hungary/Bucharest, Romania
Arrive/DepartBudapest, Hungary/Bucharest, Romania
Total Distance1581 km (982 miles) 14 riding days averaging 113 km/day (70 miles)
Daily Distance55 - 169 km (34 - 105 miles)
TermsTerms & Conditions
Dates Price Private Room Charge Notes
* We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the private room charge. This charge will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available it will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.
History and Geography of the Danube River
The Danube River has been one of the most significant cultural and historic boundaries in Europe.
- History and Geography of the Danube River