Cycle Tour Across Bohemia
Travel report: Langs Moldau og Elben fra Dresden til Děčín og fra Český Krumlov via Prag til Dresden
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Added on 27 Mar 2018,
on 15 Jun 2018
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cc0: Public Domain no Rights reserved
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by Ottocolor on 28 Mar 2018
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Passau, Bayern, DE (304 m NHN)
Dresden, Saxony, DE (142 m NHN)
13 days cycling holiday in May/June 2018 together with Kolja. Transport by train to Passau and from Dresden. Accommodation in tents at camp sites and in hotels/apartment. The tour consists of two transport days, nine cycle days and two rest days (in Český Krumlov and Prague).
The cycle route follows the rivers Danube, Vltava and Elbe, the middle of which is by far the longest, while the other rivers are only introduction and ending. The first part from Passau to Český Krumlov (3 days) is characterized by the hills of the Bohemian Forest (in Czech Šumava) and the Lipno Lake, an artificial water reservoir of the Vltava river. Český Krumlov is a very beautiful medieval and baroque town in a sharp bend of the Vltava (from which the town's name is derived as it means "The Bohemian Curved river") The town has a marvellous and large castle with a famous theater and a beautiful park. In addition, the Eggenberg brewery is at home here. The second part of our tour from Český Krumlov to Prague (also 3 days) is characterized by this river Vltava that cuts into the ground, cozy little towns and several castles on its banks. We will (at the least) visit the castle of Zvíkov. Describing Prague here seems totally hopeless, as its attractions can not be seen on the one day we spend here. On the third part of the trip from Prague to Dresden (the last 3 days), we leave the Vltava and its mouth into the Elbe, first in order to "climb" the Czech national mountain of' Říp (Georgian Mountain), then to cross the České Středohoří nature reserve (The Bohemian Middle Mountains) between Litoměřice and Velké Březno. Both of these towns stand on the Elbe, which we follow on the last part of the trip to Dresden. Before that we'll visit the memorial for the Nazi concentration camp of Theresienstadt and the museum in the nearby garrison town, and go for a excursion into České Švýcarsko (Bohemian Switzerland) partly by bike and partly by foot to see Europe's longest natural bridge of Pravčická brána (the Prebisch gate), set in a marvelous landscape of weathered sandstone cliffs and deep gorges. It is located close to the border with Germany, where it is called Elbsandsteingebirge (the Elbe sandstone mountanins). The Elbe has carved deep into it, and we follow the river to the end of the trip in the magnificent residential city of the Saxon princes Dresden.
Travel to and from ...
Train transport from Odense to Passau: Departure from Odense at 8.16 am, arrival at Passau af 11.40 pm, with four changes at Kolding, Flensburg, Hamburg and Munich.
Train transport from Dresden to Odense: Departure from Dresden at 12.55 am, arrival in Odense at 11.19 pm with three changes in Hamburg, Flensburg and Fredericia.
Our bike holiday was forcibly altered quite a deal due to a delayed train arrival on the outbound journey. Already in Kolding we missed our connecting train, resulting in a too late arrival in Hamburg to catch the ICE-train to Munich as planned. In stead we rebooked our tickets to Dresden, biked to Děčín, took another train to České Budějovice via Prague and bike to Český Krumlov. We were now back to our planned route, which we followed in the main parts. However, we took a bus and a train back to České Budějovice and followed the river Elbe from Litoměřice to Velké Březno in stead of biking into České středohoří as well as minor deviations from the planned route around Prague and Hřensko.
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Passau is a small city in Bavaria, Germany, close to the Austrian border.
Passau has a population of around 50,000, and an additional 8,000 when university is active. The city is situated at the point where the river Inn and the river Ilz meet the Danube (Donau), and therefore is often called the "Three River City" (Dreiflüssestadt). It is located approx. 2,000 km (1,200 mi) upstream from the estuary of the Danube, at the Austrian border, and enjoys a small but thriving local tourist trade.
The area of Passau was first settled by the Celts, who were living in southern Bavaria ages before the Romans came and founded a fortress here because of the excellent strategic position of the peninsula of Passau. Later on, the fortress grew and Passau became a real city. Much of the money in the city was made from the salt trade with nearby Bohemia (in the present-day Czech Republic), with the salt coming from Bad Reichenhall near Salzburg. In the middle ages, Passau's Saint Stephen's Cathedral was the head of the regional church district, which extended all the way to Hungary. Most of the old buildings have survived to this day and are still in active use.
Nowadays, Passau is known for its historic buildings, its university, and its location at the three rivers, and for the last German train station before Austria. Like much of Bavaria, it's also predominantly Catholic. If you look very closely, however, you can spot Protestant churches.
Most tourists arriving in Passau are on river cruises along the Danube, but there are also many buses that arrive here from all over Germany and Austria. Because Passau is not far from the Czech Republic and Austria, you will meet also a lot of Austrians and Czechs here to work or shop. Although most tourists are native German speakers, you will get around town without much of a problem with only English, given the large number of students.
- ⊙ Fortress Veste Oberhaus (Veste Oberhaus), Oberhaus 125, ☎ +49 851 396800. Mar-Nov M-F 9:00-17:00 & Sa-Su 10:00-18:00. The fortress was built in 1219 by Passau's Prince-Bishops in order to control commerce across the rivers. During the Napoleonic Wars the castle was one of the strongholds against the Austrians (Bavaria sided with Napoleon at the beginning of the war). Due to several changes over the centuries today's castle consists of gothic, renaissance and baroque parts. Today the fortress houses a museum focussing on the history of Passau and its surroundings. It also offers one of the best views over the city and the confluence of the rivers. Adults: €5, Concessions: €4.
- ⊙ Glass Museum (Glasmuseum), Schrottgasse 4, ☎ +49 851 35071. 13:00-17:00. The museum focuses on the most important era of glass manufacturing from 1650-1950 with exhibits from Baroque, Rococo, Art Noveau, Art Deco, and Modernism. Friedrich Dürrenmatt once called it the world's most beautiful glass house. Adults: €7, Concessions: €5.
- ⊙ Old City Hall (Altes Rathaus), Bahnhofstraße 28, ☎ +49 851 955980. Mar-Oct M-F 9:00-17:00 & Sa-Su 10:30-15:30, Nov-Feb M-F 9:00-16:00 & Sa 10:30-15:30. The Old Town Hall was completed 1405 in Venetian style and has ever since kept its design. The interior is designed in a baroque style. It still houses parts of the city administration.
- ⊙ St. Michael's Church (Jesuitenkirche St. Michael), Schustergasse, ☎ +49 851 955980. Mar-Sep M-F 9:00-17:00 & Sa-Su 10:30-15:30, Oct-Feb M-Th 9:00-17:00 & F 9:00-16:00 Sa 10:30-15:30. This baroque church on the river banks gives Passau its typical looks of an Italian town. The church was completed in 1678 and is one of the main centres of the Jesuits in the region. free.
- ⊙ St. Stephen's Cathedral, Residenzplatz 8, ☎ +49 851 3930. 7:00-18:00. The cathedral is a baroque building, finished in 1688, but the earliest church on the site was already mentioned in 450. It is the center of the Bishopric of Passau, which during the Holy Roman Empire extended as far as Hungary and was the Empire's largest diocese. St. Stephen's is the largest baroque cathedrals north of the Alps and has the biggest cathedral organ in the world. From May to October there are organ recital every day (besides Sunday) at noon and evening concerts every Thursday at 19:30. free.
- ⊙ Three Rivers Conjunction Point (Dreiflüsseeck), Ortsspitze. Fom the so called Ortsspitze ("Tip of the Town") at the eastern end of the old town you have the immediate view of the confluence of the three rivers, Danube, Inn, and Ilz.
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Wikivoyage contributors, 'Passau', Wikivoyage, The FREE worldwide travel guide that anyone can edit, 11 September 2016, 11:41 UTC, <https://en.wikivoyage.org/w/index.php?title=Passau&oldid=3048785> [accessed 28 September 2016]
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28 Sep 2016
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