Iron Curtain Trail (EuroVelo 13)

The Iron Curtain Trail along the Czech border is an exciting journey into the past.

A journey into the past. At around 200km in length and mainly flat, this is the Lower Austrian section of EuroVelo 13, which stretches from Finland to the Black Sea. Starting in Austria, follow the trail of the Iron Curtain as the cycling route winds from the green Waldviertel to the exquisite Weinviertel, and constantly crosses over the border into the Czech Republic. In addition to Austria’s northernmost vineyard (in Litschau), Hochmoor Schrems and the marshes of Retz, the route features a number of other highlights, which will tempt you to dismount.

From the nature park to the wine cellar
The Iron Curtain Trail leads cyclists back to bygone times and cultures. Pass through the Blockheide nature park in the Waldviertel, with dense forests, wide meadows and fascinating rocking stones, which to this day are said to have magic powers. Further east in the Weinviertel, hilly vineyards and quaint wine cellar lanes await cyclists. Our tip: Visit the Retz Wine Cellar, the largest historic wine cellar in central Europe.

History, nature and cuisine
From Mohnzelten (sweet potato dumplings with a poppy seed filling) to sweet wine cake, to breweries and wine cellars, the Waldviertel and Weinviertel offer cyclists a wide range of delicacies. A particular highlight is Thayatal National Park, which is also part of the route. It never fails to impress with its steep rock faces and rolling meadows, and with a bit of luck, you might spot a wild cat. As well as cooking and nature, the Iron Curtain Trail features several monuments, memorials and museums which serve as reminders of the history of the division of Europe. A diverse, exciting, and above all, interesting trail awaits pleasure and culture cyclists. Visits to the beer museum (Biermuseum) in Laa an der Thaya, and the Tümpelwiese Powder Tower, a natural monument in Marchegg, should definitely be on the agenda.

About the route:
Length: 406km
Start: Gmünd
Destination: Bratislava
Lowest point: 133m
Highest point: 667m
Rise: 2810m
Descent: 3170m