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Cycling Amber Trail from Budapest to CracowItinerary Amber Trail I

Budapest - Tatra Mountains - Krakow

Duration: 9 days / 8 nights
Distance: 355 km / 221 miles
Daily avg.: 51 km / 32 miles
Difficulty: Challenging

Self-guided / semi-guided / guided tour

Not recommended for road bikes

Day 1)
Budapest - Szentendre

After arriving in Budapest, you transfer yourself to the small town of Szentendre (12 miles away). This is achievable by bus, train, car or boat. This town has a unique character with 24 museums, 7 churches, thirteen galleries and numerous cafes and small bars. An Open Air Museum close by shows you original Hungarian country life.
Guided tour: evening briefing with our guide who brings bikes and information materials.
Overnight in Szentendre.

Day 2)
Szentendre - Esztergom (58 km / 36 miles)

Self-/semi-guided tour: morning briefing with our representative/guide who brings bikes and information materials.
Start your cycling tour going along the Danube River upstream. Take a ferry to bike across the charming Szentendre Island and by another ferry get to the opposite Danube bank. Follow a flat riverside bike path and taking the third ferry reach Esztergom. Its massive medieval castle remembers the time it used to be the capital of Hungary. Yet as the city has been the seat of Hungarian archbishops since 1000, no wonder its basilica is the largest in the country.
Overnight in Esztergom.

Day 3)
Esztergom/Sturovo – Dudince (62 km / 39 miles)

Cross the majestic Danube over a bridge leave Hungary for Slovakia. Fairly easy cycling over mildly rolling landscapes brings you to the town of Dudince, which takes full advantage of the mineral rich waters in the area. This calm town, though built according to the Socialist Realism ideas, is a very interesting place to visit, also thanks to Roman bathtubs carved out of the travertine stone.
Overnight in Dudince.

Day 4)
Dudince - Banska Stiavnica (42 km / 26 miles)

The demanding section of the Slovak part starts here with the Stiavnicke Hills, a precursor to the later mountain stages. Finish the hilly day in Banska Stiavnica, protected by UNESCO for its extremely well conserved old town and a long heritage of mining. It is one of the best stopovers on the entire Amber Trail.
Overnight in Banska Stiavnica.

Day 5)
Banska Stiavnica - Banska Bystrica (59 km / 37 miles)

Today’s route begins with a hilly section in quiet rural environment and forests followed with a long descent to the Hron River valley. Then cycle along an almost flat route upstream to Banska Bystrica. On your way stop in Hronsek to look at the precious timber church listed in the UNESCO World Heritage. Once in Banska Bystrica you can visit the museum of Slovak national uprising against the Nazi occupation in 1944. The old part of the town with a large historical square is being well restored.
Overnight in Banska Bystrica.

Day 6)
Banska Bystrica - Vlkolinec - Liptovsky Mikulas (66 km / 41 miles)

Begin the day with a car transfer to Vlkolinec, a UNESCO World Heritage Site which contains the biggest concentration of traditional Slovak architecture with old houses built using old crafts and techniques. After an easy ride along the former railroad to Liptovska Osada you begin a seven-mile long climb in the Lower Tatras. However the amazing views of sweeping landscape are worth the ride to the top. The rest of the day is easier finishing in Liptovsky Mikulas, an interesting town whose museum documents an infamous outlaw Juraj Janosik – the equivalent of Robin Hood in Slovakia.
Overnight in Liptovsky Mikulas.

Day 7)
Liptovsky Mikulas - Dolny Kubin - Sucha Beskidzka (47 km / 29 miles)

Start the day by the large Liptovska Mara water reservoir, then cycle through Chocske Hills, one of the prettiest segments of the whole route. Enjoy spectacular views of the Orava region’s landscape with two short, yet steep climbs rewarded with a long comfortable downhill ride at the end. Then get an afternoon car transfer from Dolny Kubin in Slovakia to Sucha Beskidzka in Poland.
Overnight in Sucha Beskidzka.

Day 8)
Sucha Beskidzka - Kalwaria Zebrzydowska - Krakow (21 km / 13 miles)

Today is a short day in order to get you to the royal city of Krakow earlier. Ride in the typical Carpathian landscape of Poland, where the main today's highlight is Kalwaria Zebrzydowska, an imposing Bernadine monastery. Transfer by car from Kalwaria Zebrzydowska to Krakow.
Overnight in Krakow.

Day 9)

In Krakow you will probably want to spend more than just one day. Wawel Castle, the Old Market Square, the Kazimierz Jewish Quarter, the town walls and Royal Way are some of the many things to see in this historical city, the former capital of Poland.

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