Bicycling Bavaria's Back Roads Plus! the Austrian Alps

  • Itinerary Summary

    We'll bicycle along Germany's famous Romantic Road which stretches from central Germany to the Austrian Alps. This route provides a link back in time, extending from the Roman occupation of Transalpine Gaul into the medieval & Renaissance periods. Today some of the best-preserved towns and villages from the 15th through the 18th century are strung out like pearls throughout Bavaria. You'll bicycle through the fairy tale landscape of the brothers Grimm and gain a better understanding of this historic part of central Europe. A visit to the extraordinary Neuschwanstein Castle and crossing the border into the Austrian Alps are memorable highlights. Join us for a perfect combination of cycling, nature, and the occasional spa hotel.

    ***If this sounds great, but you prefer a shorter tour, join us on our 8-day Bicycling Bavaria's Back Roads tour.***

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    1. Day 1: Arrive in Würzburg

      Highlights: Bicycle fitting, Test ride, Würzburg baroque architecture

      We gather today in Würzburg, a historic medieval center (dating back as early as the 7th century) that sits on the banks of the Main River. Come a day early to explore the exquisite Baroque palace, churches and gardens dating to the 18th century. After fitting bikes this afternoon we'll gather for introductions and dinner together.

      Distance: Test Ride. Meals: D

      Lodging: Hotel Novotel Wuerzburg

    2. Day 2: Bicycle from Würzburg to Bad Mergentheim

      Highlights: Hill rides and castles

      Our ride today takes us through the hills of central Germany to the medieval town of Mergentheim. In the early 20th century the name was changed to Bad Mergentheim in honor of the discovery, a century before, of natural mineral springs in the area. Today the village is dominated by the castle complex on the edge of the historic town. Take time this afternoon to explore this wonderfully preserved medieval town. Our hotel tonight has one of the best restaurants in the city so be sure to save your appetite for dinner.

      Distance: 59 km (36 miles). Meals: B, D

      Lodging: Hotel Bundschu.

    3. Day 3: Ride from Bad Mergentheim to Rothenburg ob der Tauber

      Highlights: Rothenburg, wine tasting

      Today we continue through the rolling hills of central Germany to the medieval village of Rothenburg. Perched high above the meanders of the Tauber River, Rothenburg looks perfectly preserved but the town center surrounded by its 14th and 15th century walls was rebuilt after WWII. This afternoon we will take a tour of a special vineyard with a beautiful collection of rare varietals. After which we'll continue our wine education and meet one of the last vintners in Rothenburg, who just so happens to own our hotel.

      Distance: 50 km (31 miles). Meals: B, D

      Lodging: Hotel Glocke

    4. Day 4: Rest Day or Optional loop ride

      Highlights: Rothenburg's market and architecture

      Take your time to enjoy this fabulous medieval city and the views it offers of the Tauber valley. For those who want some cycling we have a relaxing ride towards Bad Windsheim, another opportunity to explore Bavaria's picturesque countryside. After the ride there is still plenty of time to enjoy the market center and the streets lined with Gothic and half-timber houses, and take a tour on the walls of the city, or explore them on your own.

      Distance: Optional loop ride 68 km (42 miles). Meals: B

      Lodging: Hotel Glocke

    5. Day 5: Pedal from Rothenburg to Dinkelsbühl

      Highlights: Medieval towns of Feuchtwangen and Dinkelsbühl

      We ride over undulating farmlands from one fairy tale village to another today. In contrast to Rothenburg on the Tauber, Dinkelsbühl is indeed nearly perfectly preserved from the middle ages. As early as the 11th century, the town was a major center at the intersection of two medieval trade routes. Tonight is another opportunity to enjoy the rewards of a good handcrafted German kitchen at our top rated hotel restaurant.

      Distance: 45 km (28 miles). Meals: B, D

      Lodging: Hotel Deutsches Haus

    6. Day 6: Bicycle from Dinkelsbühl to Donauwörth

      Highlights: Ries Basin meteor impact crater, medieval town of Donauwörth, Danube River

      The landscape changes today as we pedal across the 12-17 mile wide, nearly circular Ries Basin. Unlike most of the areas we bike, which are a mixture of forests and farmlands, the geology of this area doesn't allow rich forest lands. We are back in the "typical" landscape of Bavaria as we approach historic Donauwörth on the banks of the Danube, western Europe's longest river.

      Distance: 73 km (45 miles). Meals: B

      Lodging: Hotel zur Promenade

    7. Day 7: Ride from Donauwörth to Augsburg

      Highlights: Lech River, the Cassian Way, Augsburg, brewery visit

      Our ride today takes us up the Lech River valley to Augsburg, which was founded by the Roman emperor Augustus in 15 BC. As you might expect, there is plenty to see here this afternoon. We will visit the award-winning Riegele Brauerei brewery and taste some of their modern beers before a traditional Bavarian dinner.

      Distance: 64 km (40 miles). Meals: B, D

      Lodging: Hotel Dom

    8. Day 8: Pedal from Augsburg to Landsberg

      Highlights: Landsberg, the "Bavarian Gate"

      As we bicycle from Augsburg to Landsberg we are back in the forests and farmlands, which are densely settled with small villages and hamlets all along the way. Under the Holy Roman Empire in the medieval period, Landsberg was a fortified border town separating the duchy of Swabia from that of Bavaria. Historic walls, towers and gates define the architecture of the community, including one of the best town gates in Germany, the "Bavarian Gate."

      Distance: 52 km (32 miles). Meals: B, D

      Lodging: Hotel Goggl

    9. Day 9: Bicycle from Landsberg to Rosshaupten

      Highlights: The ancient Claudia Augusta Way, Rosshaupten

      Today we continue to parallel the Lech River and the ancient Claudia Augusta Way, which eventually became the medieval trade route that gave its name to the "Romantic Way." Our destination is Rosshaupten, close to the Forggensee and King Ludwig's most famous castle, Neuschwanstein, at the foot of the Austrian Alps.

      Distance: 57 km (35 miles). Meals: B, D

      Lodging: Hotel Kauffmann

    10. Day 10: Crossing the border into Austria

      Highlights: Neuschwanstein Castle

      The "faux" medieval Neuschwanstein Castle was built by mad King Ludwig in the late 19th century and is one of the most famous attractions in southern Germany. A predecessor and inspiration for the Disney-style castles that have captured the imagination of children for a century and a half. We'll pedal or walk to the castle for a 35 minute guided visit. After our visit we'll cross the border into Austria to Heiterwang, or nearby Reutte.

      Distance: 39 km (24 miles). Meals: B, D

      Lodging: Hotel Fischer am See

    11. Day 11: Tour ends today in Reutte

      Highlights: Tour end

      If you are headed home, the Munich airport is 3 1/2 hours away by train. Gute Reise!

      Meals: B

    • Highlights

      Bad Mergentheim, Augsburg, Castle Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau, Würzburg, Rothenburg on the Tauber, Dinkelsbühl, Landsberg, Austrian Alps
    • Includes

      Use of a quality 27-30 speed bicycle; 11 days, 10 nights accommodation, 8 dinners with wine or beer, 10 breakfasts, 1 wine and beer tasting, a guided visit of Neuschwanstein castle plus "The Usual"
    • Countries

      Germany, Austria
    • Begin/End

    • Arrive/Depart

      Frankfurt am Main Airport (FRA) / Munich Airport (MUC)
    • Total Distance

      507 km (313 miles) Additional mileage available.
    • Daily Distance

      Average per riding day 56 km (35 miles)
    • Rating

      201 Rolling hills; some are steep but not long. Small roads or excellent bike paths with very little traffic.
    • Terms

      Terms & Conditions
  • Dates Price Private Room Charge Notes
    Jul 1-11, 2018 USD$4900 USD$650 Book by November 15th and save $200 Book it
    Jul 29-Aug 8, 2018 USD$4900 USD$650 Book by November 15th and save $200 Book it

    * 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.

  • Stories

    • Of the 30 tours we have taken, this one ranks near the top.

      Carolyn and Harold M., Centerville, UT
    • Like a luxury cruise, only on a bike! What was your favorite experience on this trip? Too many to count- pedaling in to Fussen and seeing the Alps was amazing. Loved Deutsches Hause hotel in Dinkelsbuhl.

      Anne G., Fort Collins, CO
    • I have been describing it to anyone who will listen as a "must do". We had been to this area of Germany on vacation in the past and have talked about it ever since. We decided that we would make this a once in a lifetime trip but it turns out it will be just the first of a lifetime of cycling trips. We are already looking to schedule our next cycling adventure with ExperiencePlus!

      Rich B., Windsor, CO
    • This was second tour with ExperiencePlus! and was once again very impressed. Love the arrows.

      Phillip R., Beverly Hills, NSW
    • Tour of a lifetime-it is everything that is advertised and more.

      Chris L., Orinda, CA
    • The website description did not do justice to the actual experience.

      Nancy and David B., Baltimore, MD
    • Wonderful, once in a lifetime, trip!!!

      Daniel F., Menlo Park, CA
    • A great, fun trip.

      Rod H., Fort Collins, CO
    • I have told our friends about the scenic countryside, quaint towns, beautiful flowers and gardens, friendliness of the German people, delicious food, perfect cycling on paths and small country roads, good bicycle , super guides, and an overall outstanding experience. Loved the arrows on the roads.

      Phyllis M., Hockessin, DE
    • Fabulous trip. Beautiful scenery - a must!

      Susan C., Charlotte, NC
    • We started looking for our next ExperiencePlus!adventure before we finished this trip.

      Scott W., Salisbury, NC
    • What was your favorite experience on this trip? Riding bike trails; beautiful countryside; charming villages, litter-free streets; smooth pavements; low to moderate traffic!

      Dave F., Columbia, MD
    • We had a marvellous trip. The tour leaders were nothing short of wonderful. The path system, scenery, towns, were amazing.

      Irwin F., Toronto, Canada
    • My favorite experience was riding through the foothills of the Alps singing the songs from The Sound of Music on a sunny warm day.

      Sari R., Glastonbury, CT
    • We had a great time. Finished up in Munich with a fine Bavarian beer to celebrate my birthday. Our best to all of you until we ride together again!

      Mike H., Sewell, NJ
    • Riding in Bavaria on the last day in Heidi and Sound of Music country. I felt like I was in a post card. Days like this are why I cycle.

      Linda M., Livermore, CA
    • Great trip. Great tour leaders. Great bikes. Wonderful German scenery, medieval towns, countryside, people.

      William W., Mt Pleasant, SC

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