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  • 10

    Prague to Budapest Ride

    Another completely satisfactory cycling holiday with Exodus, combining a well thought-through itinerary, good to outstanding hotels, historic and cultural enlightenment, great exercise in the company of other like-minded, easy going participants, led by 2 top-notch local group leaders with excellent English who went out of their way to take care of us and to share their knowledge and love of their countries.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Biking along the former Iron Curtain boundary and hearing our group leader's stories of'the oppression experienced by those he knew and the courage of those who risked death to cross the border to freedom.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Exodus couldn't have found a better group leader than Jan. I think the whole group felt grateful that to be in such capable and caring hands which allowed us to have fun and enjoy our holiday the way we'd hoped we would.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Yes. You only need to bring one water bottle (the van carries water so you can top up along the way). The bikes provided are good ones with pedals that accomodate both biking and regular shoes. You'll need 3 different currencies, but not ahead of time as local ATMs dispense them and at a better exchange rate than most currency exchange places. Paniers (sp?) are provided, but daypacks are a good idea to keep in the minibus.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I'd been interested in this trip for a while. To say I'm glad I took it would be an egregious understatement as it ranks up there with the "musts" that I didn't know I shouldn't miss until I treated myself to the experience.

  • 8

    A Great Ride!

    The best way to see the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria and Hungary is by bike and taking this fabulously guided tour. These countries are well versed in cycling and have bike paths that go for miles and miles and are in good condition. There is some cycling that happens on main roads but cars are very accommodating of cyclists. The most difficult terrain is in the first couple of days with a lot of undulating hills. For this it is best if you have some cycling experience. Strangely enough the terrain turns flat about half way through the trip which is good for a while but believe it or not as scenic as the countryside is, you'll find yourself wishing for the odd hill or two just for variety and believe me that's not something I thought I ever would have said. Transfers on the bus are minimal compared to other trips which is good because the bus is small and we had an excellent driver so safety was never an issue. The accommodation included a mix of hotels and pensions. You can expect twin beds which is noteworthy if travelling as a couple. This is the European way and in most cases the beds could be pushed together if you wanted. On only one occasion did we have beds with the springs being not far below the surface and in another there was no hot water which was disappointing after a long days cycle but on the whole they were very satisfactory and everything was well organised upon our arrival. They were also centrally located which was a bonus in the bigger cities. The spread at breakfast was excellent at every stop. However, I should mention that if you're gluten free like myself, it is more of a challenge. I picked up some supplies in Prague and carried them with me. Also, the restaurants and cafes we stopped at also don't cater to gluten free and throw in vegetarian and it can get tricky. Our guide was really helpful in trying to ensure I at least got something at lunch and dinner. There are regular stops near shops to pick up supplies. You will find the bikes themselves to be heavier than what you're used to but you soon adapt. They were safely locked away each night and spares are carried in case there are any problems along the way. Our starts in the morning were at reasonable times which is great if like myself you're not a morning person. At the end of each day, the following days information would be shared. There are plenty of breaks throughout the day starting with morning coffee, followed by lunch and an afternoon break on longer ride days. There were a few occasions were it would have been better to push on especially when it was pouring rain and you were soaked as stopping for a lengthy time only allowed you to get cold. My suggestion would be to poll the group and possibly do shorter stops especially when the weather is bad. Our group spent almost the entire trip together including at night and free time. Dinners were often followed by nightcaps in the hotel bar. A great way to end the day! It was extremely helpful in the bigger cities that our guide gave us an overview as it really helped us get our bearings for our free time. Our morning tours of some of the smaller towns were a great start to the day and the scenery was spectacular.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Surviving the two days of hills and pouring rain and wind when you at times couldn't see what was in front of you. The beauty of the places we visited and the overwhelming sense of history. Getting to know the various people on the group and hearing their stories. Seeing my own cycling ability improve over the days. Stepping out from the metro in Budapest and seeing the Buda side of the city in the late afternoon.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dana our group leader was fantastic. She was a wealth of historical information which she was more than willing to pass on to us and educate us about the history behind the countries we were travelling through. Also, her ability to speak the languages was naturally beneficial especially when it came to my getting fed. There were 15 people in our group with a range of cycling abilities and she did an excellent job of keeping us all on track and getting us from A to B each day. She stayed with us at times when she didn't have to and really she was just a lot of fun. Her back up, Hainek was also a lot of fun. He could be relied upon for great discussions on world affairs and knew all the best spots for ice cream. He held up the rear of the group with good grace and always had a smile.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Ensure you have water protected rain gear from top to bottom. We ended up using shower caps over our helmets but had nothing to protect the legs and feet. The temperature was cool the morning so prepare to have some layers. Saddle bags were provided so you don't need to being one and for the women, bring your own saddle if you can, I wish I had!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Overall a really great, enjoyable trip and I look forward to the next one!

  • 10

    Loved the Prague to Budapest trip!

    We had such a great time on this trip. I wasn't sure what to expect as I hadn't traveled with Exodus before. It exceeded our expectations. Our guide, Jan was fabulous. He was super knowledgeable not only about the route and biking but about every city we were in. I didn't realize we'd be getting guided tours (by Jan) in many of our stops. If he didn't know an answer to a question asked (which was rare) he made sure to find out for us. He also made sure we were well taken care of on the ride. As a newer biker I appreciated that he made sure we all knew the route, that there were breaks and that we were safe and had fun. As American's we loved the diversity of people in our group. Many Britts and people from other parts of the world as well. Made for really interesting conversations. Looking forward to our next trip with Exodus.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I have to say that finishing the 500k ride feeling good, seeing what we saw and having made new friends was fabulous!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jan was fabulous! Knowledgeable, conscientious, and fun to be with.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    Prague to Budapest Ride

    The trip had some fantastic sites along the way with a very good standard of hotels. The itinery for each day was excellent with some great cycling to be partaken with each day offering something for everyones taste. There were a few hills the first few days to be enjoyed or for those that were not ready full support given. The pace was set to the slowest rider and there was no pressure from the group or leader to rush the experience. I would fully recommend the trip to anyone who is interested in medieval architecture and history as the guides take you to some beautiful sites and relay some very intersting facts along the way.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were a few inspirational moments in the trip, the beautiful city of Prague, Cesky Krumlov, Telc, Vienna, the Cathedral in Esztergom and the beautiful Budapest. The ride along the Danube was also very beautiful and not to be missed.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group leader Johan had an excellent historical knowledge which he was able to pass on where ever we turned up to. He made sure the group were well provided for and made to feel safe throughout. His excellent knowledge of the route brought in some great little coffee and lunch stops at just the right time in local restuarants along the way.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I would recommend taking an extra day at the start and end of the trip or an early/late flight so that you get to explore Prague and Budapest more fully as they are both beautiful cities with a lot to see.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I fully recommend this trip as it takes you through four very different countries with rich and exciting histories with some great cycling along the way.

  • 10

    Four Countries in 10 days !

    This was my 12th holiday with Exodus (my 9th cycle tour) and one of the best, so it is not often I feel that I wish to write a review, so here goes ! This tour is a great way to see four countries and four capital cities of central Europe, all in just 10 days. Our group comprised a friendly bunch - a mix of English, Australian &amp; Americans and with me, the token Scot of the group !We were lead by a very professional team of Dana along with Hynek and driver Lubos.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were a few highlights and memorable moments on this trip. A few of them were: - 1) the free day in Vienna, and I would recommend the morning bike tour round the city centre. We all took this optional tour and it was worth it to see the highlights of the city, and still leaving the rest of the day to see the sites in your own time. 2) I also really enjoyed the cycle from Vienna to Bratislava. I cannot think of any other tour where you cycle from hotel to hotel (capital city to capital city !). 3) Cycling along the Danube, particularly on the last day which included a short ferry ride. 4) The most fun evening was the wine tasting, which we all really enjoyed !

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dana was a lovely person and a great guide. She ran a trouble free tour in a friendly and very professional manner. Assisting her was Hynek who was also great at the back of the back of the group. Our driver Lubos was always there to help with loading/unloading the bikes &amp; luggage and was always keen to try &amp; improve his English !

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The first three days or so were hilly but after that the ride is flat.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Go for it !

  • 8

    Great mix of Exercise and Culture!

    The trip was very much according to expectations and as the trip notes described. I was on an October departure and that was "out of season" for some places so some of the usual restaurants/stops that the guides would typically use were closed but they adapted accordingly... The guiding was excellent and as a pilot this trip had 2 guides based on previous comments/feedbacks that it was difficult for one guide to manage if group was fragmented. I was impressed by how they adapted the trip and listened to our feedback to make changes on the go. I was also positively impressed by the amount of history and information on the locations that the guides were sharing. The initial days were a bit hilly but very manageable for anyone cycling regularly. The bikes were hybrid/trek types which were ideal for the purpose as we had multiple terrain types but primarily road. The agenda was quite full so morning starts and new hotel every night... with typically 90mins to 2hours in the late afternoon between arriving back at the hotel and heading out again for a city tour and dinner. It was a wonderful trip with many varied experiences and locations!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I very much enjoyed the cycling through the forest part of the trip (Czech Canada) which was very enjoyable and of course the achievement of arriving in Budapest!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We were lucky to have 2 guides, both were very experience on the trip and excellent leaders. They constantly reached out for feedback and give the group options to customise the trip as much as possible.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Definitely be prepared from a fitness perspective so you can enjoy it... If you are regular cyclist it should not be overly challenging. The weather was changeable so suggest also to bring plenty of layers and waterproofs. Consider going 1 day earlier and/or staying 1 day later to have more time to enjoy Prague and Budapest.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 10

    Prague to Budapest bicycle ride

    Great fun! As a solo traveler, I was particularly gratified to find myself in a very compatible group. I'd do it again.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The ride through the "Canada" national park in the Czech Republic.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    BOTH leaders were wonderful: Jan and Donna. They were knowledgeable and informative and flexible, and they possessed a good sense of humor.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Although the Exodus agent told me that I could bring my own bike, it's a very good thing that I decided not to do so. My road bike would've be completely unsuitable for some of the surfaces we rode on. The rental hybrid was exactly what I needed. I'm glad, though, that I brought my own saddle.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Yes: keep my on your mailing list.

  • 8

    Cycling Prague to Budapest

    This was a wonderful trip. The towns through Czech and the countryside into Vienna are beautiful. The Route flattens out once on the Danube and the scenery to Budapest is OK but the first part of the trip is the most scenic. It is pretty full on cycling and at times I felt like all I did was cycle, eat, sleep, but I really enjoyed it and came home much fitter than when I left.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Making it to the end! Whilst I never got on the support vehicle, I did walk up a few hills.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dana, our leader was fabulous, well organised and kept everyone going at a good pace. Had great local knowledge and history on the areas as well.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Day 2 and 3 cycling have a few hills and I found the hardest. It's a fair amount of cycling everyday so do some training before you go!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The hotels were all nice, our hotel in Vienna was excellent and a wonderful location. However, the hotel location in Budapest was very disappointing. It was a 20/30min walk to the metro, another 20min into downtown. I aslo wouldn't want to be walking back alone at night.

  • 6

    Good trip, but some areas that need attention

    Overall this is a really great trip, where you get to see some lovely places. There are only modest coach transfers which is great as maximises the time on the bike and/or sightseeing vs taking out some of the less attractive bits of road. There is variety in the cycling over the trip, which meant it was always interesting.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Some of the smaller towns were really lovely. The cycling around the Czech-Austrian border was very picturesque as well.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dana was a great leader, but there is too much going on for one person to manage. There were a number of issues that she had to deal with, but she always maintained a smile.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Consider buying your own map of the area. Check out the Budapest hotel, particularly if you are staying on.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Most of the niggles on this trip have been commented on in earlier reviews. The trip needs two guides; with 15 different cycling speeds on what can be at times a complex route with the van only seen at breaks. Exodus are really relying on the group sorting out many of its own issues (navigational, mechanical and others) which largely we did as a well bonded group. Maps or some brief daily navigational details would have been good. The location of the Budapest hotel was also an issue (although when raised by an earlier reviewer, Exodus replied that it would use more central hotels thereafter); ours was 15 minutes walk through a not very salubrious area before getting the underground. I would have felt uncomfortable I this area had I been on my own.

  • 6

    Nice Trip But Could Be Better Still

    I had read the reviews of this trip before booking and would agree with all the good points mentioned in them as well and enjoyed the trip. But I think a few small changes could improve it even more.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I liked the cycling in the Czech Republic the most and the vist to Cesky Krumlov. The cycle paths here were fantastic and the rides the rolling terrain and forests was excellent.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jan was a good leader and and had time for everybody on the trip. I would of liked him to have an assistant on the trip to help out with the cycling with a group of 14 though.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    In June we had cold and wet weather for the first 5 days and most of us were not quite prepared for that. So make sure you have a good rain jacket. The rear pannier on the hire bikes is very handy for clothes, cameras etc so you won't have to take your own bag if you are hiring a bike. The bikes are heavy though and the worst hire bikes I have had on 8 trips. If you take your own bike there are several gravel sections so a little uncomfortable if on a road bike with thin tyres.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The harder days cycling are in the first 3 days and no build up for the lesser experienced cyclists. The last 4 days or so are completely flat and the days on the dyke in Hungary are tedious. I think the trip should be reversed to have the easier days cycling from Budapest to start ending up with the more challenging days at the end. Some people found 9 days in a row of cycling quite difficult as well. By reversing the trip and changing the itinerary order it would be ideal to include a rest day in Vienna. The group leader needs an assistant as 14 people with basically no van at the back of the trip is too hard to manage. We had some people get lost and a long wait for a bike repair because of this. The van cannot follow for much of the trip as it is on cycle paths. Also, the days on the dyke in Hungary should be reviewed. Rather than just following the cycle route to Budapest thought should be given to cycling through some of the other terrain and maybe a transfer at the end. But overall it was a very enjoyable trip and I'm glad I have done it. It could just be that bit better with a few changes.

  • 10

    Prague to Budapest tour May 2015

    My head is still buzzing with memories of the wonderful Prague to Budapest cycle tour! Our very friendly group of 15 were competently led by Jan from Slovakia, who was energetic, attentive and full of historical and local knowledge. Each day’s cycle ride presented a range of different scenery, terrain, refreshment opportunities and of course challenges. The distances in the saddle were well planned and certainly manageable in terms of length and difficulty with respect to the grade of the holiday. We tended to stop for about one and a half hours at lunch to ensure refuelling and recovery. You need to be prepared for a relatively speedy turn around on arriving at each hotel in the late afternoon in order to make the most of the evening tour, led by Jan, of the village/town/city and to then locate a suitable place to eat dinner. Each day’s cycling commenced between 8.30 to 9.00 on most days to ensure packing in as much as exploration as possible. The cities were pretty busy to say the least with spectacular architecture round every corner but the centre of the smaller towns and villages were equally interesting and more accessible in the time frame of each day. My favourite towns were Cesky Krumlov and Bratislava. Vienna was stunning and deserves another visit to do it justice. I advise reading up on the main historical events of the area before you go to put it all into perspective and of course be prepared for all weathers. Credit must be given to Jan for leading the whole trip so well. I am going to have difficulty finding a cycling holiday to match this adventure!!!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cesky Krumlov, Bratislava, Night tour of Budapest, cycle tour of Vienna, all the cycling - even in the rain and on the rutted farm tracks.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellent, welcoming and knowledgeable

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Pack light as living out of suitcase but be prepared for wet and cool weather. I went at end of May

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Squeeze in some cycling before you go and 'Just do it!'

  • 8

    Fantastic cycling experience

    My partner and I took this trip to see a part of the world that we had always been interested in exploring. We also love bike riding; it is a great way to explore new places at a different pace. This trip will suit anyone who is fit and enjoys seeing the countryside from a different perspective.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Where to start! To name a few: Riding through Czech Canada (and making it up the hills), riding past the existing check points at the borders, cycling through open pastures and wine country, biking in West Hungary on the off road tracks. Hearing stories of those who attempted to cross the iron curtain.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jan was fantastic. He had a wealth of knowledge and passion for history- almost no question he couldn't answer! His ability to manage 15 different people in our larger than usual group was admirable. He prepped the group each morning to ensure riders were ready for the day- this was helpful.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Do some hill riding before you go- the first 3 days of riding includes some hills. Also be sure to bring attire for all weather conditions- we had rail, hail and shine. Don't be put off by the distances or undulating terrain- you develop fitness as the trip progresses!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I think a second guide would be helpful for larger groups- Jan had his work cut out for him with 15 riders at varying levels of experience and speed.

  • 8

    Prague to Budapest ride

    An enjoyable tour. Packed lunches would have been preferable. Stopping at restaurants tends to lead to the waste of time which would have been better spent in the day's destinations. Altering the route taken from Gyor to Tata would be an improvement. The one followed on our trip was on a rather dull road which was used by a lot of heavy lorries.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The approach to and ride into Cesky Krumlov was impressive, as was the tour of the town itself. The cycle ride through Vienna and that along the Danube from Esztergom were also very good.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group leader was very good. Jan is very knowledgeable and a very easy person to get along with.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 8

    Prague to Budapest bicycle

    It was a good trip. We rode about 30 miles/day, sometimes with hills (northern Czech Republic), but later fairly flat. The riders were in good shape. There were opportunities to rest throughout the day, having beverage/snack/lunch breaks. The lodgings were fine and clean. The breakfasts provided at the lodgings were very good &amp; varied to suit most traveler's desires. There was good information provided as we traveled about the culture &amp; history of the area. The other travelers were very friendly throughout the trip. It is a very good value for the dollar (or pound or Euro).

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I feel that the information provided regarding the cultures &amp; histories about the various areas was most interesting.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The leader was very informative &amp; helpful. I can't think of anything that she could have done better. The assistant leader taught me some things about riding my bicycle which was very helpful. The van driver was very helpful as well.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be ready to bicycle. Although nice, this is not a leisurely trip as after bicycling all day, the riders have about 90 minutes to shower &amp; dress so that they can go out to dinner with the others. If you are looking for something more leisurely, check out Exodus' bicycle trip from Vienna to Budapest.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Often the seats of the bicycles were lowered at the end of the day in order to get them into the van. We were not informed of this &amp;, as they had been lowered only a little, were not aware of the change until it started showing up with sore knees. As a result a day and a half of bicycling had to be foregone with the time spent on the van or in the hotel. Also, prior to booking this trip, the information person led us to believe that it would be easier than it was.

  • 10

    Prague to Budapest cycle

    This was my first exodus trip and I enjoyed every minute of it a great way to see 4 countries. I am not a keen cyclist by any means but all you need is a good level of fitness as their are frequent breaks on the way. The distance covered each day is just right and becomes easier as the trip goes on building up a good level of fitness. You have plenty of time to explore the city's after the cycle normally arriving late afternoon with a guided tour and free time . I would highly recommend this trip and I will definitely be booking another cycling holiday .

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I enjoyed meeting the group and new people who had a passion for the outdoors sharing experiences and story's . Wine tasting in chez republic was a great experience and addition to the trip. I also felt a great sense of achievement on completion of the trip and has spurred me on to book another.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leader jan couldn't do enough for the group to ensure we all had a great time he would go out of his way to help with any matter even in his free time. Jan was very knowledgable about all the places we visited and knew his history and at the same time had a great senses of humour . Great trip leader down to earth .

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The first 2 days are rather hilly shorter distances but pretty hard going at times after day 2 it's plain sailing it's flat as a pancake or as jan would say a ruler !

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would check the weather and take sun cream as you are exposed for most of the day . I did get burnt on day 1 and 2 .

  • 8

    Prague to Budapest

    The Prague to Budapest ride was my first Exodus-experience and it was a great discovery! Jan, our guide, was eloquent with a large knowledge of all kinds of aspects concerning the trip and succeeded in bringing history and local customs to life during the city strolls, the dinners and cycling. The tour was a pleasant mixture: some major cities, a couple of small UNESCO listed villages and the natural scenery during cycling.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The ride through Vienna was fun and so was the wine tasting in Mikulov!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Fantastic, the good vibes!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I took an extra day to discover Budapest on my own after the tour, which I definitely recommend.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 8

    Prague to Budapest trip

    A beautiful way to see a little bit of 4 countries. I wish we had a rest day in Vienna as we had very little time to see anything. Two shorter ride days in Hungary could have easily been combined to give a day to see amazing Vienna. The first three riding days in Czech Republic were hillier than I expected as the trip notes say it is not a hilly ride. Day 3 in particular was a long, hilly day. Do some hill riding before you go. The trip could have been better organized at times and some of the hotels were in rather poor condition, but overall, I enjoyed the trip. The scenery is incredible and I will visit these countries again!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the fields of sunflowers mile after mile, and the beautiful wheat fields. Hard not to feel life is good!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Dana was very nice and wanted everyone to have a good time. More knowledge of the history and towns we visited would have been nice. Also more knowledge about the restaurants as we arrived in a new town would have been helpful so we didn't have to wander looking for a good place to eat. That's fun sometimes but when you're tired, advice is great!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring your own bike seat. The seats on the bikes are not very comfortable. Also, if you're a tall man, bring your own bike. The tallest bike frame was 20 inches. I am 5'8" and the two tall men on the trip who were well over 6 feet had the same bike as I did. They were not impressed and were often uncomfortable. I took the trip in July and it was often very hot. Bring a large water bottle and electrolyte tablets.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you enjoy cycling and seeing a good mix of the countryside and towns and cities, this is a great trip. The history, architecture, food and attractions were fantastic. I did feel the company needed to work a little harder to smooth out some issues, but I still enjoyed myself very much. The last Exodus trip was better organized though.

  • 10

    Prague to Budapest Ride

    Great experience despite a few days of cold and heavy rain.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Cycling from Vienna to Bratislava

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jan was fantastic. Calm and collected and extremely knowledgable and interested in teaching us about where we were and the history

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring warm clothes for the late August/early September dates. You may not need them but I had to buy they may be very worthwhile

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • 8

    Prague to Budapest Ride

    A great trip, with a variety of scenery and a really good bunch of people.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    1) visiting the picturesque cesky krumlov during the festival - great friendly atmosphere 2) contrasting the grandeur of Vienna with the quiet charm of the small towns and villages 3) cycling alongside fields of poppies and sunflowers, with butterlies floating by. 4) learning about life behind the iron curtain and the changes which have taken place

    What did you think of your group leader?

    This was the leaders first 'solo' trip. He did an excellent job and was prepared to go the extra mile. He was an excellent source of information and went to some lengths to ensure that individuals got the most from their visit. ( There were some occasions, where I think the trip could be enhanced by having an 'assistant', e.g. in cycling out of vienna, and on longer stretches of the route, where a 'back marker' could have been advantageous)

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bear in mind that many of these countries have their main meal at lunch time - so sometimes lunch portions are huge and would feed two. Worth checking first- esecially if you ant to sprint up that next hill! Consider taking insect repellant for the danube stretch if you are troubled by insect bites. Some places , notably Budapest include service charges, while others don't - so the bill may end up more than you expected . Be prepared for quick turnovers between arriving and departing each night and in particular in Prague and Budapest - maybe book some additional days of you want to explore ( can I say that?) these places.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Please see observations above re 'assistant guide' - on this trip people generally looked out for each other ( thanks Ron) , and arguably this is part of the experience. However an assistant as back marker and to help with loading of the bikes, minor mechanical hitches etc, would have streamlined some of the days and optimised travel/time. The bus provided was comfortable enough, but a bit underpowered for the full compliment plus custom trailer and struggled on some of the hills around Cesky Krumlov.

  • 10

    Lovely towns and countryside

    This ride visits beautiful cities and villages as well as travelling through lovely countryside especially in the Czech republic. It also gave us a chance to learn more about the remarkable history of the countries we passed through.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    We just loved all the villages and towns we were able to visit, as well as riding through the National Park in Czech on quiet roads with great company. Inspirational moments included the day we crossed the border into Austria and understanding more of the political history of this part of Europe. We were also lucky to be in Cesky Krumlov for the yearly festival.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jan was excellent. Very enthusiastic and he provided us with much detail and information about the history of the towns and countries we passed through. We were very happy with the way he led the group and was able to relate to us all, as well as finding us the best cherry tree stops.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The last part of the trip is much flatter than the first few days. We had some great coffee and lunch stops during our 11 days. There are lots of beautiful villages and towns to add variety to each day as well as some lovely countryside.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

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