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Biking from Melk to Krems mid May

After a Rick steve’s tour we are biking Melk to Krems and staying in Durnstein. What are the stops and would like to try out the wineries- any recommendations? Any restaurant recommendations for the area close to bike path.
Can’t wait!

Posted by
148 posts

Hey there, we did this cycle route in summer 2018. We were staying in Vienna. We took the train to Melk, rented bikes, biked to Krems and turned in the bikes. We did not find a lot of wineries or eateries along the bike path that were open. We didn't see any that were directly on the path; we cycled off the path into little villages a few times and what we found was closed. I don't remember what day of the week it was, but we set out from Vienna fairly early and reached Krems in the late afternoon. It's possible we were too early in the day. Anyway, we did finally come upon Campingplatz Rozsatz, across the river from Durnstein. We were starving at that point. We stopped at the visitor's center, which had a very casual restaurant with basic outdoor patio and sold camping supplies, propane, etc. With my rudimentary German I managed to understand that the restaurant was getting ready to close for the afternoon and if we wanted anything, we'd better hurry up and order. I ordered two schnitzels and two glasses of house Gruner Veltliner. Ten minutes later two sizzling schnitzels the size of trash can lids with pommes and two glasses of excellent wine were set down in front of us. It was the best meal we had in Austria.
We didn't do any research on what might be open before we set out. I would recommend looking at your route on Google Maps and seeing what's there, then checking their hours.
Do be sure to bring plenty of water with you. There was no place to buy any along the way. When we got to Krems, we stopped at a grocery store to buy some, but it was already closed (at 6 pm). Now that I'm remembering this, it must have been a Saturday. In Austria they roll up the sidewalks on Saturday afternoon and don't roll them back out until Monday morning. We stopped at train station grocery store when we got back to Vienna and it was absolutely mobbed, because nothing was going to be open on Sunday.
It's a lovely ride. Lots of grapevines, and pear and apricot trees in bloom along the way.

Posted by
1490 posts

... but we set out from Vienna fairly early and reached Melk in the late afternoon.

Somewhat strange, as going from Vienna to Melk is about one hour using public transport.

Posted by
1190 posts

I am wondering which side of the river the first poster who answered was on. If you bike the side Durnstein is on, you will go through several towns with stores, places to eat, etc. without having to leave the trail. (Spitz and Durnstein are the two we stopped at). I also know that we walked into a large winery that was right on the trail. We have biked it twice (2008 and 2016) and enjoyed it immensely. Krems is a larger town than Melk or any of the others. It will have the most choices for restaurants. We just stopped at a little place right off the trail and ate lunch. (nothing fancy) in 2016, we stayed in Spitz and were able to rent our bikes by the train station. (We did not have to go into Melk) We rode both ways, and returned it in the same place, so I can't answer whether there are still one way options. There is trail on the other side of the river, but it is not as populated. We have never tried it.

Posted by
148 posts

@Connie we biked on the side of the river across from Durnstein. We came to a ferry crossing, but would have had to wait for 20-30 minutes for the next ferry in order to cross, so we biked on. We crossed the river via a bridge when we got to Durnstein.

Posted by
271 posts

I've biked this route twice, both times north side of the river. Food is limited in the villages you pass through but available, including supermarkets. It's a good route for a picnic with many idyllic spots.

If you can wait to eat until Krems, the cluster of Heurigen (wineries that serve food - like small beer gardens but with wine) up Steiner Kellergasse (street name) are my favorite in Austria, beautiful and not touristy. For instance:

https://youtu.be/_NagCM4KvRQ

and

https://www.weinbau-resch.at/buschenschank/

Posted by
718 posts

If you can possibly fit in a quick walk through Melk Abbey, I would Highly recommend it. The ceiling paintings rival those found in the Sistine Chapel. Rick Steves has a 4 minute segment on it here: https://youtu.be/jmAaoEu9wf4

Posted by
271 posts

I concur with Shoe

Melk Abbey is my single favorite interior in Europe. Maybe a tie with the Paris Opera house. Melk Abbey is Baroque on Baroque on Baroque, a rich ornate gold leafed color explosion of gorgeous art on every surface.

Takes some time though. If you are in a rush, get through the (quite interesting) opening museum display rooms to the main events.

Posted by
48 posts

Thank you for all the great info.
The Rick Steves tour will cover Melk Abbey. After the tour we will return to Melk to rent bikes to cycle to Durnstein and Krems.
Can’t wait. If any other winery or restaurant recommendations please send.
Keep on traveling!