The Thaya and March/Morava rivers are the only lowland rivers in Austria with various floodplain landscapes and beautiful loops, providing the perfect wildlife habitat. We’ve paddled the stretch from Breclav (CZ) to Hohenau an der March (AT) and fell in love with the Thaya River, so we wanted to complete this section, too. Paddling the Thaya River through beautiful landscapes and Castle Ruins turned out to be the best scenic getaway.

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Useful Info about the Thaya River

Thaya has two source rivers that merge at Raabs/Thaya. The source river, named German Thaya, originates near the village of Schweiggers in Upper Waldviertel, Austria. In contrast, the Moravian Thaya, the second large source river, flows from the Czech Republic to Austria.

The route from Raabs/Thaya to Eibenstein is the most picturesque and beautiful navigable section, meandering through beautiful Castles and ruins. Not far away from Eibenstein, the river leaves Austria and enters the Czech Republic. For 26km, it forms the border between Austria and the Czech Republic, but at Karslust, Thaya streams in the Czech Republic only and changes the name into Dyje.

Near Reinthal, Thaya returns to Austria, forming the border between Austria and the Czech Republic for almost 20km.

Finally, after its long winding course, it flows into March/Morava River, near Hohenau an der March, where Austria borders the Czech Republic and Slovakia at the same time.

 

Things to Know Before Paddling the Thaya River

#1. Paddling the Thaya River on this route is only possible at a water level between 120 – 180 cm, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (in summer until 6 p.m.), from March to the middle of October.

#2. Always double-check the water level of the river here.

#3. There are four Weirs and a tiny island to avoid on this route.

#4. The exit and entry points can be muddy, and the path connecting them is full of vegetation.

#5. Two stretches are navigable upstream in a canoe/kayak/SUP: the one before the first Weir and the one before the third Weir.

#6. Paddling the Thaya is ideal for beginners, families, and nature lovers.

#7. Wear a sun hat, glasses, and long sleeves since the sun can burn during midday hours.

#8. There are many mosquitos from time to time, so bring insect repellent for the body and clothes.

 

Paddling the Thaya River from Raabs to Eibenstein – Summary of Our Paddling Trip 

Distance: 14.27 km  

Moving Time: 3h20′

Difficulty: 1 – for beginners

Water Temperature: 18 degrees

Water Level: 125 cm

Average Moving Speed: 4,3 km/h

 

Paddling the Thaya River from Raabs to Eibenstein 

On a beautiful Saturday morning, we drove towards the north part of Austria to paddle the most beautiful navigable section of the Thaya. We had some concerns as the water level was low early that morning, measuring only 123cm. As we had some road in front of us, we were afraid that the water level would decrease even more by the time we got there, and we wouldn’t be able to paddle the river that day. Luckily, by 10 a.m., the river measured 125cm, and paddling the Thaya River seemed possible.

 

Eibenstein to Raabs an der Thaya – by Car

First thing, we left our bikes at a restaurant in Eibenstein. We asked the family in charge to let us leave the bikes in their courtyard for a few hours, and they were kind enough to let us. We planned to serve lunch later at their restaurant; unfortunately, the place was booked for a private party.

Note. You can leave your bike near the river, at the bridge in Eibenstein, without asking anyone’s permission to store it for the day.

 

KM 0 – The Riverbank near the Jufa Hotel in Raabs an der Thaya 

starting our paddling tour on Thaya at the smooth entry in Raabs

The smooth but muddy entrance into the water near the JUFA Hotel and parking lot.

Shortly before 10 a.m., we parked the car near the JUFA hotel in Raabs an der Thaya, near the riverbank, and began inflating our Kayak. We were not the only ones there; another couple came and left soon after us on an inflatable kayak, but we never saw them again that day. Mosquitos were flying around us, so we left the shore as quickly as possible.

The water entrance was smooth, and the lack of current made the first part of the trip enjoyable. We soon paddled into a romantic wild area with high rocks on the river’s right side and dense flora.

 

KM 6 – The first Weir in Kollmitzgraben 

The first 6 km were picturesque, in total stillness; only a few raindrops smashed the area’s silence. We shaded under some trees during the mist, felt noel any discomfort. The water displayed a cafe au lait color, and the dragonflies flew around us  were waiting for the rain to stop.

We even met a few tourists in some blue rented canoes coming from the opposite way; they didn’t seem disturbed by the mist eighter. But, as we weren’t in a hurry, we just wanted to indulge in this beautiful landscape, so we paddled at a low speed.

Soon, we reached Kollmitzgraben, where we landed our Kayak on the left-hand side shore at the designated area.

The exit point at Kollmitzgraben, on the left-hand shore of Thaya River, Austria

 

Visiting the Kollmitz Castle Ruins 

By the time we reached the first Weir in Kollmitzgraben, the sky was clear, and the temperatures were pleasant, so we decided to visit the famous Kollmitz Castle ruins.

We fixed the Gumotex kayak on the beach trolley and headed uphill to the ruins, where we dropped it near the parking lot.

The ruins of the Kollmitz Castle are some of the largentire Austria. The Castle was a defensive border against the Bohemians once. Now, everyone can roam freely inside the Castle ruins, pay a visit to the small museum, climb the steep steps to the towers, find the old maid and her husband, and dream of how life used to be in the early days.

Visiting the Kollmitz Castle Ruins during our kayak adventure

Our greatest wish was to savor the beautiful views of the Thaya Valley from one of the towers. After the visit, we grabbed a quick bite and a coffee at the snack bar inside the ruins and left on our adventure: paddling the Thaya River!

the view from the Kolmitz Ruins in Austria

Kollmitz Castle Ruins Opening Times:

May to October, daily, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., in good weather.

July & August from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., daily, in good weather.

Entrance Fee:

Free of charge, but you can always donate something for the preservation of the ruins.

 

KM 8 – The second Weir in Dorfwiesgraben 

After our short break, we headed to the Band River in Kollmitzgraben. The embarkment was unstable and way too muddy for our taste, so we had to be cautious not to bring soil inside the Kayak. We took a few more photos of the ruins from thewaternd we paddled further.

The entrance point of the river was muddy and unstable

The entry point was too muddy for us, but we could do nothing about it.

For the first time in a very long time, we recognized a beautiful black stork flying around us. Fish continually jumped out of the water, while a bunny came out of the bushes, greeting us with his long ears.

We landed the Kayak on the left-hand side of the river, just before the Weir in Dorfwiesgraben. To reach the river band after the Weir, we had to march on a path full of vegetation, which was challenging to do with a kayak. The embankment was steep and muddy once again.

trying to reach the embarkment during our paddling adventure on Thaya river, Austria

 

KM 8.5 – No need to land the Kayak; just paddle further  

Shortly after the departure, no more than 500 meters away, we reached another exit point sign on the right-hand shore. We stopped, landed the Kayak, and looked for the entry point. Unfortunately, there was no sign, and the path was obstructed after only a few meters. Back to the Kayak and back on the water. It seemed like there was nothing dangerous; only the river’s current was slightly stronger than before.

enjoying the beautiful views while paddling the river

 

KM 10.6 – The third Weir in Brunngrabenbach 

We continued to paddle, admiring the beautiful landscape and listening to the sound of nature. Nothing is more recreative than that. Finally, we reached the third Weir, not far from our last stop.

We held at the exit point on the left-hand shore, but the path led nowhere. So, we took the Kayak and paddled closer to the Weir, trying to find a proper place to embark. Not a chance! We had to grab the Kayak up and cross an area full of nettles. Oh, boy, they sting! Sweaty and annoyed by the lack of a proper entry point, we finally found a place to put the Kayak and left the unfriendly area behind.

stopping at the third Weir in Brunngrabenbach on Thaya river, Austria

 

KM 11.3 – The small Island 

A few minutes later, we bumped into a small island with the river flowing on the right and left sides. We stopped here and tried to look right or left, but we couldn’t see much. The river seemed a little bit agitated, and as we couldn’t see what was going on, we decided to cross over the small island band. I presume we could have paddled on each side of the river without problems.

Reaching the small island along the Thaya river.

Reaching the island. Left or right? We will figure it out next time. But, for now, we crossed the Kayak and paddled further to Eibenstein.

 

KM 13 – The fourth Weir before Eibenstein 

After crossing the small island, the flow was slow once again, the vegetation dense, and the views amazing. A few herons flew around us, and another emerged fromout of the bushes.

Soon after, we reached the last Weir, just before Eibenstein. We landed on the left side at the exit sign and headed directly to the entry point, which was a bit hard to spot. Three young people were paddling the river upstream in a canoe and looking for the entry point.

the last stop and weir of this paddling trip on Thaya River

 

KM 14.2 – Arriving at Eibenstein 

There was only one kilometer to paddle, and the beautiful day was coming to an end. We stopped at the bridge on the left-hand shore. Finally, the exit was easy—no more mud, just a few rocks. We took the Kayak out of the water, placed it on the grass, and packed everything after taking a short break on one of the benches.

Note: Paddling the Thaya River from Eibenstein further to Drosendorf is forbidden!

Reaching the final point of the day, the bridge in Eibenstein

When you spot this bridge, you will know that your adventure on the Thaya River is over. You can stop on the left or the right-hand side, depending on where you are going from here.

 

Biking from Eibenstein to Raabs an der Thaya

We collected our bikes from the restaurant and biked 6.5 kilometers to Raabs an der Thaya, where we left our car. The ride back was pleasant, as the temperatures were dropping and the traffic was low.

 

Alternative: Paddling the Thaya River from Breclav(CZ) to Hohenau an der March(AT)

Paddling the Thaya River is also possible further east when the Thaya returns to Austria, the white storks and herons paradise. The current is more substantial, making the paddling easier, and the route is ideal for beginners and families.

There is no Weir to obstruct the route, no water level to beware of, the landscape is different, and you will get the chance to paddle through many fishing cabins along the way and spot many white storks.

Distance: 24 km

Moving Time: 3h40′

Average Speed: 7km/h.

If you want to find out more about this route, read the entire article:

KAYAKING THE THAYA & MARCH FROM BRECLAV(CZ) TO MARCHEGG(AT) 

 

Paddling the Thaya River from Raabs to Eibenstein, Austria. Interactive Map

Underneath, you’ll find a customized map that includes all the locations mentioned in this article. Just open this article on your phone and click on the frame in the upper right corner of the map. The Google Maps app will open, and you can check all the details. I hope it helps!

 

Austria Travel Resources

Car rentals

We always use DISCOVER CARS when we want to rent a car as it compares local, national and international companies. Renting a car is the easiest way to see all the famous country has to offer. All destinations are easy to access with a rental car, and having your own car is also the smoothest way to travel between Austrian cities and mountain villages. Check out the best rental deals HERE.

Secure your travel insurance

We never leave home without travel insurance designed to cover our expenses if something goes wrong. If you’re still on the lookout for travel insurance for your trip to Austria, I highly recommend HEYMONDO, a trusted insurance provider for leisure and business trips, backpackers, long-term travelers, and digital nomads. Their travel insurance protects against theft, flight delays, injury, illness, cancellations, and much more.

Get an eSIM before the trip

Because phones have become our most important devices, it’s necessary to have a data connection as soon as you step foot in a different country. Your home data plan might only work if you paid for a much more expensive package, finding wifi connections in airports or train stations might be tricky, and seeking a local store to buy a SIM card might be exhausting. Forget all of that!

You just purchase an e-SIM, install it on your phone, and activate the plan when you’re ready to use it. Getting out of the plane and instantly connecting to data was a game changer for me. I didn’t have to waste time standing in line to get a local SIM card or finding a wifi connection to book a taxi to reach my hotel.

If you ask me, getting an e-SIM is a quintessential part of traveling. There is no physical installation and no long-term commitments. And the best part is that you can always top up or purchase a new plan through the app. Pretty convenient, right? You can get an e-sim card with AIRALO

Save time and book a tour

For a local experience, I recommend checking out the guided tours on GET YOUR GUIDE.

Kayak related articles

If you’re planning a trip to Austria, you might want to read my other kayak articles:

KAYAKING THE DANUBE CANAL IN VIENNA

KAYAKING THE THAYA & MARCH FROM BRECLAV(CZ) TO MARCHEGG(AT) 

 

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Paddling the Thaya from Raabs to Eibenstein

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