In September, Matt and I, and five of our friends went on a river cruise/bicycle ride on the Danube River. We departed from Passau, Germany, went all the way to Vienna, Austria, and came back – with lots of stops along the way. Over the course of a week, we cycled around 250 km, and the boat took us the rest of the way.
Every evening, our guide would map out our cycling route for the following day, he gave us recommendations for places of interest and suggestions on where to eat and drink. He also gave us the time that we had to be back on board – and after that, we were on our own. It was a wonderful way to see the Austrian countryside.
On our 4th day of biking, the fog was so thick I was constantly wiping moisture off of my glasses (but I didn’t care!). My brother Chris, Thea and I were going to explore Vienna that afternoon and the following day on foot while everyone else toured the city by bike. Our bike ride was only about 35 km to where our boat was supposed to dock near Vienna. We arrived far too early, so we backtracked to a restaurant on the river for lunch.
We sat outside facing the river and the stretch of land, kind of like an island, that was created when the river was widened to accommodate the water traffic coming in and out of Vienna. The island is mainly a park, and is also very popular with nudists, according to our guide. Much to our surprise (and amusement), an elderly couple came out of their house directly across the river – in the buff! He proceeded to rummage around on their boat while she did some work in the garden. Eventually, they both sat down to read a book. After we finished our beers, it was time to head into the city.
After a day and a half of wandering around historical buildings, museums, churches, and catacombs in Vienna, it was time to depart the city and head back to the Wachau region for one last day of biking.
To be continued…