Cycling Krakow to Slovakia Plus! Budapest

Cycling Krakow to Slovakia Plus! Budapest

Bicycle between two of Central Europe's most fascinating cities on this ride from Krakow to Budapest. We'll cross the Carpathian Mountains through a low pass in the High Tatra range as we pedal from Poland, through Slovakia and into the Danube Basin in Hungary. Part of our route follows the ancient "Amber Route" that connected the Baltic Sea with the Adriatic. This historic trade route is perfect for cyclists who love undiscovered regions and pedaling through beautiful landscapes.

***If this tour sounds great but you don't have time for the entire ride check out our Cycling Krakow to Slovakia tour which features the first 8 days of this itinerary.***

Tour Dates & Prices

Date
Price
Private Room Fee
Note
Jun 18-30, 2021
USD$4800
USD$650
Itinerary changes coming in 2021. 

* 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.

Tour Style: Classic Book This Trip Now Hold-A-Space/Questions Request Custom Date Download Itinerary Tour Map
  • Trip At-A-Glance
  • Tour Summary
  • Daily Itinerary
  • Travel Information
  • Map
  • Reviews
  • Similar Tours
Trip At-A-Glance

Trip At-A-Glance

  • Length / 13 Days
  • Total Distance / 712 -732 km (440-452 miles)
  • Avg. Distance / 65 - 67 km (40 - 41 miles) per riding day
  • Tour Level & Tour Style / 4.0 Classic
  • Countries / Hungary, Poland, Slovakia
  • Begin/End / Krakow, Poland / Budapest, Hungary
  • Price / From USD$4800
More Photos
Tour Summary

Tour Summary

  • Highlights
    Krakow, Budapest, Riding the hills of Central Slovakia, UNESCO World Heritage sites in Slovakia and Hungary, High Tatra Mountains

    Keep 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.

    It is rare to find air-conditioning at hotels in this part of the world.
  • Includes
    13 days, 12 nights accommodation, meals as noted in itinerary, 12 breakfasts; and the usual (see below).

    Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Classic tour at the Classic Tour Style page.
  • Arrive / Depart
    Krakow Airport (KRK) / Budapest Ferihegy Airport (BUD)
  • Overall Tour Level
    4.0 difficulty level 4.0

    Daily climbs in excess of 2,000 feet per day (except Day 6)with mountain climbs in excess of 4,000 feet on Days 9 and 10. River bank bike paths out of Krakow and into Budapest.

  • Daily Ride Summary

    Day

    Distance/Gain
    mi/ftkm/m

    Terrain

    Day Level

    Notes

    1
    Test ride
    2
    48km
    3
    79km
    4
    65km
    5
    74km
    6
    53km
    7
    54km
    8
    61km
    9
    82km
    10
    69km
    11
    122km
    12
    71km
    13

Terrain Legend

Gentle Gentle

Rolling hills Rolling hills

Hilly Hilly

Very hilly Very hilly

Mountainous Mountainous

Daily Itinerary
Download Itinerary

DAY 1: Tour begins in Krakow

Highlights: Medieval Krakow, Krakow market square, Royal Wawel Castle, Vistula River

Krakow is one of Europe's most beautiful cities and has been on UNESCO's list of World Heritage sites since 1978. It was spared from devastation during World War II and retains a multitude of architectural and urban planning examples from the 12th century. The city is dominated by the Royal Wawel Castle sitting on a rise above the Vistula River. Below the castle lies the Medieval city, home to one of the largest market squares in Europe. You'll want to spend at least one extra day, if not two, in Krakow before our tour begins. We fit bicycles this afternoon and will enjoy an inaugural dinner together this evening.

DAY 2: Krakow Loop

Highlights: Wieliczka, Salt Mines

An invigorating loop out of Krakow takes us to the historic town of Wieliczka this morning. Wieliczka is famous for its salt mine, which operated continuously from the 13th century until 2007. Almost 300 kilometers of passageways spread under the town, and the mine boasts an underground lake, and four chapels carved from the salt by the miners. We’ll return to Krakow this afternoon to see more of this stunning city.

DAY 3: Bicycle from Krakow to Mszana Dolna

Highlights: Open air skansen (museum village) in Dobczyce

We bicycle southeast out of Krakow passing through Dobczyce. This town shares a reservoir of the same name that boasts the remains of a 13th century castle and an open air village of 18th and 19th century traditional architecture. Stop for coffee and lunch supplies before continuing on to Mszana Dolna where we spend the night.

DAY 4: Mszana Dolna to Cervený Klástor

Highlights: Rolling hills, Pieniny National Park Poland & Slovakia

Today's ride takes us to the border between Poland and Slovakia and into the heart of the Pieniny National Park. The Pieniny Mountains are one of many small mountain ranges that make up the larger Carpathian Mountain chain and we will pass right through them as we enter Slovakia on a bike and pedestrian-only path along a scenic gorge. This is a rare opportunity and one of the only no-car border crossings we encounter. Our hotel tonight sits along the banks of the Dunajec River.

DAY 5: Cervený Klástor to Levoca

Highlights: Levoca

Today’s ride heads to the heart of the Spis region, a territory rich in northern Slovakian history. Once known for its wealthy traders, craftsmen, and miners, it’s no wonder that two of Slovakia’s five UNESCO World Heritage sites are located here. We’ll continue pedaling through valleys of narrow fields, where grass is still hand-cut by scythes and carried in horse-drawn wagons. We’ll have two nights in the ancient town of Levoca. once an important town for commerce. Today, Levoca is probably best known as the home of the medieval sculptor Master Paul of Levoca. Be on your best behavior today so as to not end up in the 17th century “Cage of Shame” in front of the town hall.

  • Distance: 74km (46mi)
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Lodging:

DAY 6: Bicycle Levoca Loop

Highlights: UNESCO Castle in Spis, Historic square of Spisska Nova Ves

Our ride today takes us to Spisska Hrad (UNESCO), the largest castle in Slovakia. With the silhouette of the Spis castle behind us, we ride by the French Chateau Markušovce towards Spisska Nova Ves. Enjoy its historic and stunning square and an amazing view of the town from the highest church tower in Slovakia (87 m). All of these sights along the Poprad River valley are recognized world heritage UNESCO sites.

  • Distance: 53km (33mi)
  • Meals: Breakfast
  • Lodging:

DAY 7: Levoca - Poprad

Highlights: Poprad, Slovak Paradise National Park

As you ride today you'll have the forests that make up part of the Slovak Paradise national park on one side and the High Tatra mountains on the other side. You'll also ride by the beautiful gothic chapel of Spissky Stvrtok, a church built by Master Hans Puchsbaum, the same architect to build St. Stephen's Catehdral in Vienna.

DAY 8: Poprad - High Tatras - Poprad

Highlights: Extraordinary views of the High Tatra Mountains

The High Tatras are the highest mountain group in the Carpathian range. The imposing wall of granite peaks rises to a height of 2655 meters from the Poprad basin and the city of Poprad. These snowy mountains, as they were called in the middle ages, are virtually inaccessible except on foot. We'll take a loop ride today to enjoy views of the mountains and, weather permitting, we'll suggest taking the cable car to Lomnicky stit, the second highest peak in the High Tatras.

DAY 9: Poprad - Low Tatras (Tale)

Highlights: Low Tatra Mountains and the largest Slovak national park

We head south today, through the Low Tatras, which are characterized by long valleys and deep forests. This is the largest mountain range in Slovakia protected in the nation's largest national park. We pedal around the edge of the park, then over a pass in the middle of the mountains. To the northeast are the High Tatras, to the south are the Slovak Rudohorie (Slovak Ore Mountains). Thanks to strict conservation measures the Low Tatras are the home to some of the few populations of brown bear left in Europe.

  • Distance: 82km (51mi)
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 10: Low Tatras - Látky

Highlights: Low Tatras, historic mining area in the Ore Mountains, forestry railroad

We leave the region of the low Tatras today and head up the Hron River valley. We pass through Cierny Balog, home to the historic steam railway museum. At one time this valley hosted the longest forestry railroad in Europe at 132 km. We continue south to the small village of Látky for our last night in Slovakia.

  • Distance: 69km (43mi)
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 11: Slovakia to Bánk, Hungary

Highlights: Bicycling the low hills of southern Slovakia into Hungary

Our ride today takes us across the border into Hungary after traversing one of the most culturally diverse regions of Central Europe. We leave the forests behind us and begin to get into more field crops, horticulture and a little viticulture.

DAY 12: Bicycle Bánk to Budapest, Hungary

Highlights: The hills of Hungary, Danube river, bike paths into Budapest

Our final ride takes us through the low hills of northern Hungary to the banks of the Danube river north of Budapest. We'll follow small roads and bike paths to enter the city, with part of our route on islands in the middle of the Danube. Our hotel is in the heart of Budapest. We'll celebrate our ride with a special final dinner tonight.

DAY 13: Tour ends in the enchanting city of Budapest

Highlights: Budapest, Parliament building, Fisherman's Bastion, the Danube River

Our trip ends after breakfast today; take time to explore this extraordinary city.

  • Meals: Breakfast
Travel Information

Travel Information

Day 1: Arrival Information

Tour begins in Krakow

Meeting time 2 p.m. - on Day 1, meet your fellow cyclists and Tour Leaders at the Day 1 Hotel specified on the itinerary.

Note:

As you are planning, remember that the hotels listed in our itineraries are our primary hotels and are - in rare cases - subject to change. Before you make arrangements, check with us if your tour departure is guaranteed. If your tour departure is out further than 6 months, please also check with us as there might be slight changes to the itinerary.

The below information will help you plan your arrival. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio. The fare and timing information listed below is approximate.

We recommend flying into the Krakow Airport (KRK):

  • *Taxi from the airport to the Day 1 Hotel (30 min/PLN 70)

*Note: We strongly recommend that you use the official airport taxi company, RADIO TAXI 9191, found at the airport taxi stand outside of the airport. If there are no cars at the stand, use the phone at the station to call them directly (they do speak English). You can also call +48 800 19 19 19 from a public phone, or from a mobile phone dial: +48 12 19191. Stick with the official taxi even if you are approached by a driver from another company. The fare estimate above should be the maximum, including tip (taxis use a meter).

Day 13: Departure Information

Tour ends in the enchanting city of Budapest

Your trip ends on the final day after breakfast.

The below information will help you plan your departure. For more tips or other routes, you might like Rome2Rio

We recommend flying out of the Budapest Airport (BUD)

From the Ending Hotel to the Budapest Airport

  • Taxi. The front desk can arrange your transfer at a discounted rate (45 min/HUF 6500 through hotel/HUF 8000 regular)
  • Shuttle Bus (times and fares vary).

Keep 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.

It is rare to find air-conditioning at hotels in this part of the world.

Pre-Trip Planning Checklist

To Do Today!

3–6 Months Prior to Departure

  • Reserve your flights after you know you have a confirmed tour departure. Please check with our office if you do not know if your trip is confirmed. As you make your plans refer to the Getting To and Away sent to you in your booking confirmation email it provides meeting times and the starting and ending hotels and shuttle information when applicable.
  • Book your pre and post-tour hotel nights. Please refer to the Getting To and Away sheet you received in your Reservation Confirmation Email.
  • 12 weeks before your tour begin your training program www.experienceplus.com/training.
  • Final payment is due 90 days prior to the tour start. Please refer to your Deposit Payment Invoice and the Final Payment Reminder e-mail you have received for detailed instructions.

6 Weeks–2 Weeks Prior to Departure

Day of Your Flight

Get as much sleep on the plane as you can. Pack your Getting To and Away information and one day of cycling gear in your carry-on. See you soon!

What to Expect on Tour

Classic Tour Style

Learn more about what is included and what to expect on your Classic tour at the Classic page.

Map

Map

Reviews

Reviews

  • Challenging, but do-able riding. Great variety, really, really good tour guides.

    Kay F., Fort Collins, CO - June 2018
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Fairly rigorous cycling, interesting culturally, beautiful routes, great guides and great food.

    Jill C., Fredericksburg, TX
  • As usual amazing tour leaders. Wonderfully accommodating very smart lots of fun. Challenging, very interesting loved it beautiful cities. But this was not France or Italy. I would recommend it to people who have done other tours and are open to surprises. The roads were any where from pristine to impossible if you are not flexible it would be problematic.

    Lizz V., Sunnyvale, CA
  • The tour was a lot of fun with great guides and people. The countries are obviously developing, but very interesting. Worth seeing. Poland is thriving, Slovakia is green and beautiful and Hungary is charming and lively.

    Jane C., Lucca, Italy
  • We enjoyed it all, but in particular the Dunajec Gorge was beautiful and it was lovely to do it twice at different times of the day. The finish, riding into Budapest, was wonderful and the special dinner on board the boat whilst travelling along the Danube

    Heather B., Kirkcaldy, Fife Scotland
  • I especially enjoyed our picnic lunch with spectacular views of the High Tatras, pedaling the gorge between Slovakia and Poland, and the boat dinner cruise of Budapest.

    Kevin G., Bullhead City, AZ
  • What was your favorite experience on this trip? Eight cyclists - one pack - cycling into Budapest to the hotel. A real buzz.

    Collin B., Castle Hill NSW, Australia
  • the thrill of riding through the countryside, particularly of Slovakia, was wonderful.

    Jerry S., Palo Alto, CA
  • Jerry and I have just returned from the Krakow to Budapest trip and really had a great time. The scenery was really fantastic, especially the wild flowers, dark forests, and open fields. The final dinner on the boat cruising the Danube was a great way to end the trip.

    Dick S., Palo Alto, CA
  • This was one of the best tours offered by ExperiencePlus. In Poland and Slovakia we daily had long uphill climbs with lovely downhills. This was great biking! The scenery in Slovakia was also outstanding. The forests and the meadows were beautiful, and the changing of the forest colors from green to fall colors added to the spectacular views. Then, cruising up and down the Danube, having dinner and enjoying the lighted night sights of Budapest was a super ending to a great tour!

    Carolyn and Harold M.,
    Centerville, UT
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