Stage S11 of the Amazon of Europe Bike Trail begins in Noskovci, located in Virovitica-Podravina County, but only a few kilometers away from the entranceto Osijek - Baranya County,near the small village of Gezinci. This is also the longest route of this section of the Amazon of Europe Bike Trail. However, 74.12 kilometers of lowland route will be easy to handle for advanced cyclists. The section is located entirely in the Mura-Drava Regional Park, which joins the Kopački rit Nature Park to the east.
The best of Drava river
The area of the Mura-Drava Regional Park is characterized by natural wetland habitats, which have become rare at European level. The wetlands of the free-flowing Drava River are home for numerous plant and animal species, resulting in an extremely rich flora and fauna. Continue your cycle tour and experience many natural beauties such as floodplain forests and effluents of the Drava, joining into the majestic lowland river uninfluenced by manmade structures. You will enjoy the popular meanders - the winding trough of the Drava River that curves in the shape of the letter S. Also, your attention at many locations throughout the section of the route will be caught by sand and gravel bars and islands as well as eroded steep river banks, so seldomly seen on European rivers encroached by humans, but indicating the intactness of each river where they appear. Lovers of fishing and relaxation will enjoy the popular resort of Etno Blanje whose nature exudes greenery and peace. The route is also part of the future transboundary 5-country Biosphere Reserve Mura-Drava-Danube, part of the larger riverine landscape known as the "Amazon of Europe".
Pay a visit to Podpanj Ornithological Reserve
The first city the river bike trail passes through is Donji Miholjac. Donji Miholjac is known for its Mailath castle, which was built in 1906 and is one of the best preserved castles in Croatia. A place that you should not pass by near Donji Miholjac is the Podpanj Ornithological Reserve. The reserve is highly important for nesting of birds and is a beloved winter resting area for some bird species as well. Specifically, 106 species of birds are recorded in the reserve area, of which about 20 are European endangered species and as many as three are listed as globally endangered species. Due to these ornithological values, in 1997, Podpanj became a protected area in the category of special ornithological reserves.
The palace and the beach
The end of Stage N2 of Amazon of Europe Bike Trail is Belišće, a town that lies on the two rivers Drava and the Danube tributary Karašica. Among the sights of Belišće we must point out the Secessionist Gutmann Palace, built in 1905, one of the most significant architectural works from the beginning of the 20th century. Enjoy the swimming pools in Belišće which, during the summer months, offer their citizens and guests the opportunity to cool down and relax. For those who want to get to know the Drava River more closely there is a river beach near Belišće, Bistrinci, one of the most beautiful sandy beaches on the Drava River, where in addition to bathing and swimming, you can also try kayaking. There are several kayak clubs in Belišće where tourists can rent a kayak.
Basic Equipment for Bicycle Touring
- Cycling helmet
- Cycling gloves
- Sturdy, comfortable and preferably waterproof footwear
- Layered, moisture wicking clothing
- Rucksack (with rain cover)
- Protection against sun, rain and wind (hat, sunscreen, water- and windproof jacket)
- Ample supply of drinking water and snacks
- First aid kit
- Bivy / survival bag
- Survival blanket
- Pocket knife
- Cell phone
- Navigation equipment / map and compass
- Emergency contact details
Technical Equipment for Bicycle Touring
- Air pump or CO2 pump including cartridges
- Puncture repair kit
- Replacement inner tube
- Tire levers
- Chain tool
- Hex keys
- Spoke wrench
- Zip ties
- Phone / device holder as required
- Bike lock as required
- Where applicable, the bike must meet requirements for road use by having a bell, front and rear lamps and spoke reflectors
- Luggage system as required for length of journey: panniers with racks
- Handlebar / frame / saddle bags
- Mudguards recommended
- Tent (3- or 4-season)
- Stove (including fuel and utensils)
- Sleeping mat. Sleeping bag with suitable temperature rating.
- Toiletries and medication
- Toilet paper
Things to Bring if Staying in a Hostel
- Toiletries and medication
- Quick-drying towel
- Ear plugs
- Sleeping bag liner
- Alpine club membership card if applicable / ID
- The 'basic' and 'technical' equipment lists are generated based on the selected activity. They are not exhaustive and only serve as suggestions for what you should consider packing.
- For your safety, you should carefully read all instructions on how to properly use and maintain your equipment.
- Please ensure that the equipment you bring complies with local laws and does not include restricted items.