Melk to Krems Danube River Cruise

Old Mar 16th, 2014, 05:02 PM
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Melk to Krems Danube River Cruise

We will be in Austria this July and our family of 4 plan to take a one way Danube River cruise from Melk to Krems on a Friday. Any suggestion how we get back to Melk where we are staying? We will have a rental car - is there any way that one of us could safely leave our car in Krems overnight to collect the next day and then sight see on the way back to Melk, thereby saving 3 train/bus??? fares? Should we abandon the idea and just do a city round trip cruise when in Vienna?
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Old Mar 17th, 2014, 12:24 AM
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You could take the ferry both ways. Or do as we did some years back when we were travelling with our teenage daughters. We hired bikes where we were staying in Durnstein and cycled to Melk, then took the ferry back again. No problem taking your bikes on the ferry. Not sure how old your kids are but it was a great day!
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Old Mar 20th, 2014, 12:32 AM
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Thanks, PRLCH. My sons are certainly old enough - teenagers! but I think I am more worried about my old knees. Do you remember how far or how long it took to cycle? Was it easy riding? The reason we were not going to take the ferry both ways was a time factor - 2 hours one way and then 3 hours back so it would take the whole day really and I was hoping to do some other sightseeing in the Wacau area.
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Old Mar 20th, 2014, 12:48 AM
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Cycling the ~30km from Durnstein to Melk takes between 2 and 3 hours, depending on how frequently you stop for photos, snacks, etc. The terrain is mostly flat, too.
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Old Mar 20th, 2014, 12:09 PM
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I would not recommend biking. You have limited time and much to see. If biking, The better way to bike along the Danube is to travel Melk- Durnstein/Krems. upstream

This is the way most bikers make this trip allowing travelers to " go with the flow " and not fight oncoming bike traffic.

Many bikers look to the scenery etc. and sometimes forget others travel this route coming toward them.
This way is also slightly downhill and most often the prevailing wind is to your back.

With limited time , the auto serves as a better way to see this fine area.

Several safe places to park free near the boat dock in Krems.

The bus line WL 1 runs about one time per hour between Krems and Melk.

It will follow the Danube passing through Durnstein, Weissenkirchen, St Michaels, Spitz all worth a visit .

Melk - Krems is about 40 kilometers - driving time 30m minutes.

Perhaps an alternative is to take the boat from Melk to Durnstein-

A good sized parking lot there safe and minimal cost even overnight.

The boat views between Durnstein and Krems are much less than those above so you miss little in scenery.

Tour Durnstein and return as you wish to Melkby bus /car.

www.duernstein.at
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Old Mar 23rd, 2014, 03:13 PM
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We did the trip some years back so unfortunately I don't remember all the exact details. This is what I wrote in our trip report when we came back:
A highlight of the trip was when we hired some bikes from the hotel and set off to cycle along the river to the town of Melk (about 30km). It was a lovely sunny day, but very windy. We seemed to be the only people cycling towards Melk (straight into the head wind!), with most cyclists coming the other way. Was this coincidence, or did they know more about the winds than we did? We cycled through the vineyards and little villages to Spitz where we crossed on a small ferry to the other side of the Danube. The last 10 km into Melk seemed to take us forever – the winds were very strong by this stage and there were a few hills which tested our endurance. We arrived at Melk very hungry and devoured the best pizza and beer at a small restaurant in the middle of town. After this we enjoyed visiting the massive Melk Monastery. It seemed to be “dripping” with gold and most unlike any other church we had seen in Europe before.
My suggestion that we cycle back to Durnstein was met with a flat refusal. The entire family was adamant I could do it alone, so I bowed to majority rule and we returned to Durnstein by boat. The boats are well set up take cyclists, so having the bikes with us was no problem at all. It was interesting to get a different perspective of the valley from the boat and the girls identified places they wanted to explore further.
The next day we explored the valley by car. We started at the ruins of Aggstein Castle. The ruins were fantastic, the audio guide great, and the views stunning. A photographers dream! Another real highlight for us!
We then drove to Willendorf. This was a definite “must do” for us as Claire had studied Venus of Willendorf at school, and had even made her own Venus out of clay in art. We easily found the site where Venus had been discovered and took some great photos of Claire with an oversized Venus look-alike. We finally ended up in a park in Krems for a late lunch. In the afternoon we climbed the hill behind Durnstein to the ruins where Richard the Lionheart had been imprisoned – very pleasant.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2014, 07:46 PM
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Thanks for your comments. I think the bike ride may be too much for me but I was thinking my husband, who is a keen cyclist, may enjoy the ride - maybe not if it is windy though!!!! We only have part of an afternoon and 1 full day in the area before we head to Vienna so we really need to plan our time. It sounds as if we could leave our car in Krems or Durnstein overnight and then catch the bus or cycle back to Melk - take the river cruise the next morning, pick up our car and continue sightseeing the area. Thanks for the extra info on what to see in the area.
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