Austrian Lakes Cycling Holiday
Duration/s6 or 7 nights
Start / FinishSalzburg / Salzburg
Distance169 miles/272 kms
A cycling holiday through the heart of Austria’s beautiful lakes region, staying in picture perfect villages alongside serene alpine lakes ringed by towering peaks. Cycle at your own pace, stopping where and when you like, be it for a swim, to explore further, or simply to sit and admire the view.
Starting from Salzburg, an elegant, attractive city with lots to see and do, you will cycle through some the best known and most beautiful villages in Austria. Mondsee, Gmunden, Traunkirchen, Halstatt and St Wolfgang, all fairytale-like places in breathtaking alpine settings.
Beside the scenery, the area is also known for it’s historic and cultural appeal as well as culinary delights such as apple strudel – of course with cream! Of course the city of Salzburg is also inextricably linked with the ever popular movie “The Sound of Music”, and the von Trapp family starring Julie Andrews, and tours are offered taking in the sites and landmarks that featured in the film.
Although you are cycling amongst mountains, the route tends to follow the valley floor and while we can’t say you won’t encounter any hills at all – there won’t be nearly as many as you might think. It’s also worth mentioning that e-bikes are available on this tour as well as regular bikes.
Itinerary & Map
Although you are cycling amongst mountains, the route tends to follow the valley floor and while we can’t say you won’t encounter any hills at all, there won’t be nearly as many as you might think. It’s also worth mentioning that e-bikes are available on this tour as well as regular bikes.
If you opt for the 6 night tour then day 5 of the below itinerary is omitted.
Day 1: Arrive in Salzburg
Check in to your hotel and then spend the rest of day exploring this small but fascinating city. Must sees include the Getreidegasse a marvelous, old-world shopping street where ornate, wrought iron signs depict what is being sold within. Here also you can visit the birthplace of the city’s most famous son, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the composer lived at No. 9 until he was 17 years old. The city’s most prominent landmark, Hohensalzburg Fortress is also worth visiting and don’t worry about the climb as there’s a funicular railway to whisk you to the top. Of course the city is also inextricably linked with the ever popular movie “The Sound of Music”, starring Julie Andrews, and tours are offered taking in the sites and landmarks that featured in the film.
Day 2: Salzburg – Trumer Seen Lakes, 28 to 34 miles/45 to 55 kms
Leave Salzburg cycling north along the banks of the Salzach river. After about 10 miles at a bend in the river you come to the small village of Oberndorf, where the Christmas carol, “Silent Night” was originally composed. You can visit the small Silent Night museum as well as nearby Michaelbeuern Abbey before cycling east through open rolling countryside to the Trumer Seen Lakes where you overnight. A shorter, more direct route is possible if preferred.
Day 3: Trumer Seen Lakes – Lake Mondsee, 31 miles/50 kms
Cycle through the peaceful nature reserve surrounding the serene Egelseen Lakes and then on to the picturesque village of Schleedorf. Continue on to idyllic Lake Irrsee and then further to Lake Mondsee. Fans of “The Sound of Music” may recognise the beautiful church in the centre of Mondsee town as it was used for the wedding scene in the film. The scenery is breathtaking with impossibly blue lakes reflecting the limestone peaks, pine clad slopes and lush meadows of the Salzkammergut. Spend the night in the Lake Mondsee area.
Day 4: Lake Mondsee – Lake Traunsee, 31 to 50 miles/50 to 80 kms
Start the day with an enjoyable boat trip (high season only) to the village of Weyreg on the opposite shore. Disembark and cycle along the lake to the Aurachtal valley, which you then follow eastwards to the pretty town of Gmunden situated on the northern tip of Lake Traunsee. This is Austria’s deepest Lake but that doesn’t seem to dissuade the many water-sports enthusiasts who enjoy windsurfing wake-boarding and sailing here. There are numerous lakeside bathing areas so feel free to stop for a refreshing swim yourself if the mood takes you. Ride down the lake’s western shore past Altmünster, home to a rather quaint bicycle museum, and on to the picture-perfect village of Traunkirchen. Be sure to visit the village church to see the incredibly detailed Fisherman’s Pulpit which took 10 years to carve.
Day 5: Lake Traunsee – Lake Hallstattersee – Bad Goisern, 13 to 21 miles/20 to 35 kms
This day is omitted if you opt for the 6 night version of the tour
Load your bike onto the train and enjoy the one hour ride south to Obertraun on the south eastern corner of beautiful Lake Hallstättersee. If you wish you can take the Dachstein cable car to a height of 1350 meters and enjoy the spectacular panoramic view. You may also choose to visit the extraordinary ice caves, which are a short walk further up the hill from the cable car station. Afterwards, cycle round the lake to Hallstatt itself – the idyllic lakeside village has featured on countless travel brochures covers and epitomises the perfect lakes and mountains scene. Finish the day with a pleasant cycle along the lake-shore to Bad Goissern where you overnight.
Day 6: Bad Goisern – Lake Wolfgangsee, 22 miles/35 kms
Cycle to Bad Ischl, a Spa Town which for centuries has attracted many to it’s brine water health treatments. You may wish to visit the sumptuous Kaiservilla, Kaiser Franz Joseph’s summer residence where he signed the declaration of war against Serbia that precipitated World War I. Cycle on along the Ischler Ache River to Lake Wolfgangsee and then along the shore to St Wolfgang itself. Visit the Hotel Weisses Rössl (White Horse Inn) made famous in the musical comedy and maybe ascend nearby Schafberg Mountain on the quaint, puffing, cog railway. Overnight in Lake Wolfgangsee.
Day 7: Lake Wolfgangsee – Salzburg, 25 to 31 miles/40 to 50 kms
Cycle to the northwestern end of the lake to St Gilgen, where Mozart’s mother was born. The perfect setting of this pretty village can be best appreciated from above and we therefore recommend taking the cable car up the nearby Zwölferhorn for a truly memorable panorama. You then cycle eastwards past the quiet and pristine Hintersee Lake and through the Strubklamm Gorge to the Salzach Valley. We recommend a visit to Hellbrun Palace where there is lots to entertain young and old, before cycling back to Salzburg along the Salzach River. In the evening you can celebrate the week’s achievement with a lovely meal somewhere in the city.
Day 8: Departure
After breakfast it is time to check-out and head for home or your next adventure.
Dates & Prices
|2017 Arrival Dates|
|Arrivals daily from 22 April to 07 October|
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|Deposit per person||£100|
Board basis: Bed & Breakfast
Maps and route information
Train Traunsee - Hallstätter (7 night trip only)
Boat ride on Lake Attersee (July/August only)
GPS route data
Bike hire (see supplements)
Tourist tax (payable locally)
Half board, 6 nights superior (£169)
Half board, 7 nights comfort (£158)
Half board, 7 nights superior (£195)
Extra nt Salzburg, dble/twin, low/mid, comfort (£57)
Extra nt Salzburg, single, low/mid, comfort (£79)
Extra nt Salzburg, dble/twin, high, comfort (£67)
Extra nt Salzburg, single, high, comfort (£91)
Extra nt Salzburg, dble/twin, low/mid, superior (£67)
Extra nt Salzburg, single low/mid, superior (£103)
Extra nt Salzburg, dble/twin, high, superior (£86)
Extra nt Salzburg, single, high, superior (£139)
Bike hire, includes lock and pannier (£77)
Electric bike (£186)
50% for children 6 -11 years sharing with 2 adults
25% for children 12 -14 years sharing with 2 adults
Superior: A mix of 3 and 4 star hotels
The bikes provided on this tour are modern city bikes with 21 speeds, and comfortable saddle with upright riding position The bikes also come equipped with odometer, rear pannier, lock, repair kit, handlebar bag and map holder.
Electric bikes, smaller framed children’s bikes, tag-a-longs, trailers and child seats are also available.
We suggest you bring your own helmet for safety and hygiene reasons. Alternatively, you are able to buy a helmet locally for around 35 euros.
Below you will find examples of the types of accommodation typically used on this tour. Please note that the hotels we book for you may differ slightly from those described but they will certainly be of a similar standard.
Comfort: 3 star hotels, inns and guesthouses. All rooms have en-suite facilities.
Superior: 3 and 4 star hotels
Some hotels have started to charge a local/tourist tax. These taxes are not included in the sale price of the tour and must be paid directly by you at check-in or checkout at the hotels. This fee varies and is ever changing but as a guide, you may be asked to pay between €1-€4 per person per night
Fly to Salzburg airport and then take the regular public bus into the city. Alternatively you can also fly to Munich airport followed by a commuter train into the centre and then an intercity train to Salzburg – total journey time approx 2.5 hours.
- Date - 04/07/2017
- Name - Andrew Williamson
- Service rating - 5.0
- Service comment - Very good advice from someone that really new the tour and the information that we needed.
- Product rating - 5.0
- Product comment - The trip, scenery, weather and tour was wonderful. I'd really recommend it to anyone.
1. instructions on first day to go to Hotel Achat Plaza zum Hirschen dont include the address. It was also a little annoying because a Dutch Group (the same day) got their bikes dropped off directly at Hotel Ganslhof GmbH;
2. as you will know, we had a terrible experience at Hotel Ganslhof GmbH where no twin room was available on our last night and as such I would not recommend you continuing to use this hotel. The owner was rude and uncaring;
3.on day 4 we were quite confused as we had different instructions in (a) the document provided by Flexitreks; and (b) the booklet provided by Eurobike. We followed the document by Flexitreks in the end;
4. the Flexitreks instructions on Day 4 would be more understandable if they started with "Cycle from your hotel along the lake to Ebensee Station, and take the train from their to Obertraun Dachsteinhöhlen Bahnhof".
The words after the comma are missing, and there are two Obertraun stations! Especially as Ebensee is at the end of lake Traunsee (I must be stupid, but I didn't realise I had to take a train... and pay for bicycle too"
5. The instructions for STAGE 5: BAD GOISERN – LAKE WOLFGANG APPROX. 35KM were terrible. We lost the km postings around St Wolfgang (12 kms and didnt recover them until kms 24.4. While the arrows on the signs provided the route, the instructions were almost redundant.
Sorry for all the negative feedback, it was still a brilliant Holiday!
- Date - 22/06/2017
- Name - Pat McIntyre
- Service rating - 5.0
- Service comment - The specific requests I made regarding the beds and the bikes seemed to be dealt with perfectly by Flexitreks. There was however a misunderstanding by 1 hotel regarding the requirement for twin beds as opposed to a double room. I think perhaps the the terminology on the Hotel list could be clarified by stating specifically 2 separate beds, I think it said double or DBL on the hotel vouchers though this may be outside of Flexiteks control.
- Product rating - 4.0
- Product comment - The trip was wonderful. Superb scenery most of which is seen from very quiet roads or dedicated cycle tracks. The route was not too taxing - we are certainly not regular long distance cyclists and we found it fine though we did resort to a bit of bit walking and pushing in places, mainly because of the rather hot weather. The hotels/pensions ranged from adequate to excellent which was fine as the excellents outnumbered the adequate. The unisex bikes provided by Eurobike were very good quality and well maintained, comfy seats too. My only criticism is that it was not really catering for English speaking clients. The trip descriptions were in English but the maps were German. The key to the maps did have translation but the text used was so small and faint that it was barely legible with out a magnifying glass. There was a steep section of the journey where we walked on waymarked paths and trails mainly through forest. The bikes were transported for us and we were given a map showing the collection point. We could not find the bikes at the end of this section. Having walked well beyond where we expected them to be we backtracked and called at a farm house to enquire. Fortunately the lady there spoke English. She looked at the map which we had been given and told us that we had coincidentally called at the place where the bikes used to be left on previous trips and that the map we had been given was out of date. We had to walk further back up steep roads to collect the bikes. It added an extra hour and 4 km to our walk was quite a tough walk to start with. I was really not happy with the situation. I would have given this trip 5 stars if this had not happened.
- Flexitreks response - Thanks for the feedback Pat. In light of your comments we are reviewing the route notes with our local supplier to ensure future customers do not have the same problem. I am glad that, aside from this small glitch, you had a wonderful time.
- Date - 07/08/2016
- Name - Michael
- Service rating - 4.0
- Service comment - The Flexitreks team were very helpful and in regular communication.
- Product rating - 5.0
- Product comment - Had a FANTASTIC time. Weather wasn't perfect - but it can be rainy any time during the summer.
- Flexitreks response - Thanks for the review Michael. Yes, the alpine summers can be a bit hit and miss at times but we're glad you had a fantastic time anyway.
- Date - 20/07/2016
- Name - Susan Hay
- Service rating - 5.0
- Service comment - I felt that this was a very personalised service. Excellent help, friendly and always willing to go the extra mile to meet our needs.
- Product rating - 5.0
- Product comment - Day one is very challenging but your legs (and derriere) soon get used to the punishment! You'll cycle through peaceful, beautiful spots - very rural and quiet most of the time. There is so much to see and do en route...just not enough time, spending one day in each place, to do it all! We took an extra day in Bad Ischl and were very glad we did so.
There are hills on the way, as you would expect, but these are quite manageable. My husband had a sore neck from looking behind him to see where I was! Sometimes to be found pushing my bike up said hill....
You will need to hone your map-reading skills as we did wander from the routes a couple of times but never got completely lost.
Each of the hotels was a good three star standard and the owners could not have been more helpful. Most speak English well. Breakfasts were all excellent and set us up for the day.
Time in Salzburg at beginning and end of the week was appreciated. Beautiful city. Don't miss the trick fountains at Helbrunn Castle or the city beer gardens - some of which are hidden.
- Flexitreks response - Hi Susan, Thank you so much for the lovely review and photos. The sore neck comment brightened our day!
- Date - 13/06/2016
- Name - Jenny
- Service rating - 5.0
- Service comment - Sabina was very helpful and explained the details very well and the workings on the E Bikes
- Product rating - 5.0
- Product comment - Beautiful scenery, cycle tracks and roads. The snow capped Alps and the rolling green landscape withe small villages, you touched the heart of the country.
- Flexitreks response - Thanks for the lovely review Jenny - we're so glad you enjoyed your cycling holiday in Austria.