Krakow and Dunajec Cycling Holiday

  • 4.7
    (6 reviews)
  • Category

    Cycle Touring
    Self Guided or Guided
  • Grade

    Leisurely
  • Duration/s

    7 nights
  • Start / Finish

    Krakow / Krakow
  • Distance

    145 miles/234 kms
  • Themes

    EbikeRivers and Lakes
  • Accommodation

    Comfort to Superior
  • Tour code

    007-101CPL
Price From £488

Overview

A leisurely cycling holiday taking in fascinating and romantic Krakow before heading south to follow the Dunajec river through the peaceful green valleys and breathtaking gorges of the Tatras Mountains. This scenic cycling holiday is mostly downhill, passing pristine lakes and romantic castles, staying in charming, cosy mountain villages.

Krakow is a fascinating city and has much to offer from the medieval Old Town with its huge market square and bustling streets to Kazimierz, the former Jewish quarter with its rambling lanes and alleyways. Take a stroll along the banks of the Vistula River past the impressive Wawel Castle or perhaps journey out to the museum at Auschwitz, an extremely poignant and thought provoking place.

Following your stay in Krakow you are driven south to the Tatras Mountains where you spend 5 glorious days in the back of beyond, following the course of the Dunajec river as it descends through breathtaking mountain scenery.  Don’t be put off by the word ‘mountain’ as the route is mostly downhill and for much of the way it follows brand new cycle paths.

Dunajec Gorge - Poland

Dunajec Gorge – Poland

You’ll enjoy incredible mountain views and visit traditional alpine villages along the way. Clear alpine lakes, ancient castles and towering peaks will also vie for your attention and you will love the stunning ride through the pristine wilderness of teh Dunajec Gorge itself.

Opt for either the self guided tour, using maps and route notes or join a group with a local English speaking guide who takes care of navigation and is also a font of knowledge on local culture and customs. This leisurely cycle route follows cycle paths and quiet lanes and is suitable for all cyclists with an average level of fitness. There are one or two short climbs but nothing too taxing and much of the route is gently downhill.

Itinerary & Map

This leisurely cycle tour follows quiet lanes and paths and is suitable for all cyclists with an average level of fitness. There are one or two short climbs but nothing too taxing and much of the route is gently downhill.

View larger map

Day 1: Krakow

Main square - Krakow - Poland*

Main square – Krakow

Arrive in Krakow and check into your hotel. We highly recommend a stroll through the beautiful old town, a boat trip on the river if you have time and perhaps also a wonder through the narrow streets of the old Jewish quarter.

Day 2: Krakow – Zab by minibus. Zab – Zakopane, 16 to 19 miles/ 25 to 30 kms

Zakopane

Zakopane

The day starts with a short cycle tour around the city of Krakow. This is followed by a minibus transfer to Zab, 100kms south of the city in the Tatras mountains. The first ride goes up a gentle incline to a ridge above the village from where you can enjoy fantastic views of the surrounding mountains. You then freewheel down the other side to Olcza and then on along the valley to Zakopane. A ski resort in the winter months, Zakopane is a lively place with a distinctive mountain culture proudly maintained by the local population. The timber framed houses create a cosy atmosphere that makes this a very enjoyable place to spend the night.

Day 3: Zakopane – Nowy Targ, 32 miles/ 50 kms

Cycling near Zakopane

Cycling near Zakopane

The morning starts with a cable-car ride to the top of nearby Gubalowka mountain and from here it’s predominantly downhill for most of the day, albeit for a couple of short, easy climbs. After admiring the view from the summit you cycle downhill, through the tiny village of Dzianisz and on along the fertile valley to Chocholow, a village famous for its fine wooden houses so typical of the area.

From here you begin to follow a suberb new cycle path that follows the route of a disused railway line.  After passing through Ludzmierz, with its famous pilgrimage shrine, the cycle path leads you to the town of Nowy Targ where you stop for the night.

Day 4: Nowy Targ – Niedzica, 28 miles/ 44 kms

Niedzica Castle - Lake Czorsztyn

Niedzica Castle – Lake Czorsztynskie

Today you follow the cycle path alongside the Dunajec River the village of Lopuszna. From here you switch to a quite road that leads you south to the Bialka river and then follows its course through the impressive gorge near Nowa Biala to Lake Czorsztynskie. In the village of Debno at the top end of the lake you can visit a delightful, wooden church thought to be one of the oldest in Poland. You are now cycling through a region that until 1918 was part of Hungary, and at the southern end of Lake Czorsztynskie you will see the beautiful Niedzica Castle, for centuries a border position between the two countries. The castle, also known as Dunajec Castle is widely considered to be the most picturesque castle in Poland. Overnight in the nearby town of Niedzica.

Day 5: Niedzica – Szczawnica 22 to 25 miles/ 35 to 40 kms

Dunajec Gorge - Poland

Pieniny Way – Dunajec Gorge

Today is a spectacular ride with many sights that will live long in the memory. The Dunajec river guides you first to the small village of Sromowce and then a little further on to Cerveny Klastor (Red Monastery) above which you can see the impressive Trzy Korony, (Three Crowns) of the Pieniny mountain range.

You then leave the asphalt behind and begin to follow the Pieniny Way , a narrow path, only for cyclists and walkers, that follows the river on its journey through the the stunning Dunajec gorge. Thick forested hillsides plunge down to the river on either side  and the only sounds are the bird-song, the burbling river and the crunch of your tyres on the gravel. Stop to admire the scenery  and if it’s hot you might even be tempted to paddle or swim in the clear mountain river. The river makes up part of the border between Poland and Slovakia and during your journey through teh gorge you will actually be cycling in Slovakia

At the end of the Gorge you return to the Polish side and spend the night in the pleasant little spa town of Szczawnica.

Day 6: Szczawnica – Rytro, 34 miles/ 55 kms

Rytro

Rytro

After breakfast you cycle north following the river through a much wider valley. This is very peaceful cycling past old barns and farmyards, through meadows and orchards – no surprise that this area is also known as “Green Dunajec”. Stop for lunch at a guesthouse in Lacko, known for its strong ‘Slivovitz’ – plum brandy. Bid the Dunajec farewell at the village of Golkowice and follow a quiet road to Rytro, an old feudal village guarded by a hilltop castle in the Poprad Valley. Enjoy a tasty dinner of grilled trout fresh from the nearby Poprad River.

Day 7: Rytro – Stary Sacz – Nowy Sacz – Krakow, 10 to 16 miles/ 15 to 25 kms plus minibus

Nowy Sacz

Nowy Sacz

The day starts with a short easy ride to the little town of Stary Sacz at the head of the valley. Take a walk or cycle through the maze of narrow streets for a feel of the atmosphere of past times around this pleasant village before continuing on to the nearby town of Nowy Sacz. The ornate houses lining the attractive market square date are from the Habsburg era. A stroll through the town’s quaint streets is very enjoyable. You then board the bus for the 2 hour journey back to Krakow for the last night of your tour. In the evening you are invited to enjoy some Klezmer music bringing the tour to a close.

Day 8: Departure

After breakfast it’s time to checkout and head for home or your next adventure

Dates & Prices

2020 Arrival Dates - scroll down for 2021 dates
Self-guided
May9162330
June6132027
July4111825
August18152229
September51219
Guided
May30
June1327
July1125
August822
September5

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2020 Prices - scroll down for 2021 prices
007-101CPL
Per person
09 May
to
19 Sep
Self Guided - Bed & Breakfast
Comfort category
Double/twin £513                    
Single £621                    
Triple £479                    
Superior category
Double/twin £661                    
Single £887                    
Triple £617                    
Self Guided - Half-board
Comfort category
Double/twin £572                    
Single £680                    
Triple £534                    
Superior category
Double/twin £749                    
Single £976                    
Triple £699                    
Guided - Half-board
Comfort category
Double/twin £710                    
Single £818                    
Triple £663                    
Superior category
Double/twin £887                    
Single £1114                    
Triple £828                    
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      

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Deposit per person £195

Price Includes

7 nights accommodation. See practical information
7 x Breakfast or half-board
Luggage transfer (Umlimited, max weight 20kg per piece)
Maps & route information
Welcome briefing
Transfer Krakow - Zab
Transfer Stary Sacz - Krakow
Klezmer concert on the last evening
Local assistance
GUIDED Tour also includes:
Funicular, Zakopane - Gubalowka
English speaking guide

Price Excludes

Flights and transfers
Bike hire (see supplements)
Helmet
Entrance fees

Supplements

Extra night Krakow, double/twin, comfort (£41)
Extra night Krakow, single, comfort (£64)
Extra night Krakow, double/twin, superior (£79)
Extra night Krakow, single, superior (£125)
Regular bike with pannier & lock. See practical information (£56)
Electric bike with pannier & lock (£121)
2021 Arrival Dates
Self-guided
May8152229
June5121926
July310172431
August7142128
September4111825
October29
Guided
May22
June1226
July1024
August721
September

Scroll/swipe to see more

2021 Prices
007-101CPL
Per person
08 May
to
09 Oct
Self Guided - Bed & Breakfast
Comfort category
Double/twin £522                    
Single £633                    
Triple £488                    
Superior category
Double/twin £673                    
Single £904                    
Triple £628                    
Self Guided - Half-board
Comfort category
Double/twin £583                    
Single £693                    
Triple £544                    
Superior category
Double/twin £763                    
Single £994                    
Triple £713                    
Guided - Half-board
Comfort category
Double/twin £723                    
Single £834                    
Triple £675                    
Superior category
Double/twin £904                    
Single £1135                    
Triple £844                    
Ignore                      
Ignore                      
Ignore                      

Scroll/swipe to see more

Deposit per person £200

Price Includes

7 nights accommodation. See practical information
7 x Breakfast or half-board
Luggage transfer (Umlimited, max weight 20kg per piece)
Maps & route information
Welcome briefing
Transfer Krakow - Zab
Transfer Stary Sacz - Krakow
Klezmer concert on the last evening
Local assistance
GUIDED Tour also includes:
Funicular, Zakopane - Gubalowka
English speaking guide

Price Excludes

Flights and transfers
Bike hire (see supplements)
Helmet
Entrance fees

Supplements

Extra night Krakow, double/twin, B&B, comfort (£42)
Extra night Krakow, single, B&B, comfort (£66)
Extra night Krakow, double/twin, B&B, superior (£81)
Extra night Krakow, single, &BB, superior (£128)
Regular bike with pannier & lock. See practical information (£57)
Electric bike with pannier & lock (£123)

Practical Information

Bikes

007 - Hybrid bike

An example of the bikes used on this tour

Regular bikes provided are modern alloy framed models with 21 speeds. The bikes come equipped with pannier, lock and a repair kit with pump.

Electric bikes are also available.

Helmets are not supplied and we therefore recommend bringing your own.

Electric bike

Electric bike

 

Accommodation

Below you will find examples of the accommodations typically used on this tour. Please note that the hotels we book for you may differ from those listed below as these are provided for guidance only.

Comfort: Comfortable hotels and guesthouses.

Kraków:  Hotel Wyspiański
Zakopane: Hotel Biały Potok
Nowy Targ: Góralski Raj
Niedzica: Hotel Polana Sosny
Szczawnica: Hotel Nawigator
Rytro: Willa Poprad
Kraków:  Hotel Wyspiański

Superior: Good quality hotels and guesthouses.

Kraków:  Hotel Amadeus
Zakopane: Hotel Belvedere
Nowy Targ: Hotel Casa
Niedzica:  Hotel Lokis
Szczawnica:  Hotel Szczawnica Park Resort & Spa
Rytro: Hotel Piwniczna
Kraków:  Hotel Amadeus

Local taxes
Some hotels in some countries 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.

Getting There

Gallery

Current rating for this cycling holiday based on 6 reviews 4.7
  • Date - 19/06/2019
  • Name - Mike Hudson
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Good communication and route description etc
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - We liked the flexibilty of the routes, with opportunities to extend / reduce the daily rides and info on places to visit / view en route.
    a very well conceived route through fabulous scenery. would recommend to everyone.
  • Flexitreks response - Thanks Mike, praise indeed from such an experienced cycling holiday connoisseur!
  • Date - 04/06/2019
  • Name - Tony Walker
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - We tried to book early, before the 2019 prices and dates were confirmed, and Flexitreks noted our interest and contacted us to let us know when the tour was available for purchase. We had some issues paying for the tour from Australia and Flexitreks staff helped to make it easy and secure.
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - The tour was well organised in terms of the cycle route and the directions. Directions could be improved by adding numbers to the directions and showing the numbers on the map; juggling the two was sometimes tricky, especially on the couple of rainy days we experienced when wet maps ended up rather a mess. The hotels were comfortable but the evening meals provided (as half board was the only option) varied in quality. Most were buffet style but a couple offered no choice. This was an issue for us as we informed Flexitreks of our meal preferences as vegetarian, and were told this would not be problem, but it seems this request was not passed on by the local company to the hotels. We managed to negotiate meals, but rather unsatisfactory, and we felt this also placed the hotels in a difficult position. Breakfasts were invariably good, and evening buffet meals also. Several hotels had spa facilities that were very welcome at the end of the day’s journey. We both felt the tour was a fantastic experience, a little more challenging than we expected in parts, but well worth the effort to make it up some steep ascents. This was our first visit to Poland and we found it wonderfully interesting, and the tour provided an excellent mix of natural and cultural features. We think the infrastructure that is under construction will make the tour even more enjoyable as more bike paths mean less time on roads. If Flexitreks could have arranged for fine weather on the two days it rained, we would have been grateful, but this is expecting too much! We have already recommended this tour to fellow cycling enthusiasts.
  • Flexitreks response - Service rating : Thanks Tony, booking early helps ensure you get your No. 1 choice of tour and start date.
    Product : Thanks for the comprehensive feedback Tony. I'm glad you had a fantastic time and I'm so sorry your dietary requirements were not passed on to the hotels. Hopefully this did not have too detrimental effect on what otherwise sounded like a great holiday
  • Date - 08/09/2018
  • Name - Esther Parris
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - Ally is a great flexitreks representative. It was a please booking my trip with her.
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - A great group of people on the tour with a wonderful guide. Slightly harder than I had expected, but great fun despite that.
  • Flexitreks response - Service rating : Thanks Esther - Ally is blushing!

    Product : Thanks Esther. We're so glad you enjoyed it and had fun despite it being a little harder than you envisaged.
  • Date - 03/09/2018
  • Name - Owen Griffith
  • Service rating -
    4.0
  • Product comment - —-
  • Flexitreks response - Thanks
  • Date - 27/08/2016
  • Name - Anonymous
  • Service rating -
    4.0
  • Product rating -
    4.0
  • Product comment - Had a great holiday, but could you please point out to your clients that this particular trip also takes you over the border into Slovakia on 2 occasions, when I bought my travel insurance it was for being in poland only, technically wasn't insured for being in Slovakia, going down the dunajec gorge was on the Slovakian side, which, incidentally was the most scenic part of the trip, stopped for lunch, didn't have any euros on me, but fortunately accepted polish currency. It just would have been good to know. Unfortunately I had a tumble from the bike on the 2nd last day of the trip, just braked too hard on gravelly bit of road, no one else involved, fortunately, got taken to hospital by ambulance and had leg stitched, couldn't fault the service, even the policeman that breathylised me was polite and curteous. (I DID PASS!) The police had asked our polish guide if I had been drinking, was told no, but did say, 'we could fine her for not having lights on the bike', they didn't, none of the bikes had lights, so everyone could have been fined, perhaps that's something you will need to speak to Bird Services about, although all the cycling was done in daylight, but if delayed for any reason, you could get benighted! I didn't cycle the last morning, but got taken to village where bus was picking everyone up, along with holiday walkers, to go back to krakow, so didn't miss too much. Overall good holiday, good company, good food, and accommodation, but maybe, for me just a bit too much on roads, and not enough cycle tracks.

    Please excuse me if you did supply the information about being in Slovakia, as sometimes my skim reading if not always accurate! I will stand corrected if applicable.

    Kind regards
    Linda Symon
  • Flexitreks response - My goodness, what an adventure you seem to have had! I am sorry to hear you had an accident but glad nothing was broken. I hope the stitches have been removed and you are on the road to recovery. The police in Poland certainly handle things differently - it was good you had the guide at hand and also the E111 card worked! Thank you for the feedback and constructive comments about the trip. We will certainly update ‘client holiday details’ to advise future clients that they should consider bringing some Euros with them as they will cross into Slovakia and I am sure this will help. We do say that the part of the itinerary where you cycle near the Gorge into Slovakia is quite stunning but again we will try and make this clearer. I am pleased that overall you had a lovely time.
  • Date - 04/08/2016
  • Name - Derek
  • Service rating -
    5.0
  • Service comment - The Flexitreks team were very helpful and supportive in answering queries raised in a timely manner - cheers.
  • Product rating -
    5.0
  • Product comment - Overall a very enjoyable holiday - suited to a relaxing pace of life (bikes not built for speed) through some scenic countryside.
    The route was well selected, with much either downhill or flat - although there are a few sections on more busy roads (cannot be helped) and unfortunately Polish drivers are not very forgiving of cyclist.
    The tour company on the ground were responsive and helpful to any assistance required.
    Overall the hotels were of a good standard - 'comfort' standard - except for the 1 night when the hotel offered is also used by the 'simple' category.
    The food was variable - overall good, although some unusual touches of most note was the desire by the providers for us to eat late afternoon - it seemed to get earlier as we travelled along.
    Absolutely no issues with language - the Polish people we met were great - English is understood by many, especially the younger generation.
    Overall thoroughly enjoyed the holiday.
  • Flexitreks response - Many thanks for the review Derek and we're so glad you enjoyed your holiday overall. Our local supplier is working to source an alternative 'superior' hotel for the night in Nowy Targ and we've also asked that the evening meals be served a little later than you experienced.