Explore charming Silkeborg, which is one of the most beautifully located towns of Denmark.
Follow Trækstien (The Towpath) along the banks of Gudenåen, Denmark’s longest river.
Experience true Danish ‘hygge’ in the old inns on the banks of Gudenåen.
Walk along Denmark’s largest artificial lake and visit The Energy Museum with activities for the whole family.
Try traditional Danish cuisine in the cosy surroundings of the inn restaurants.
Follow in the footsteps of 18th century bargemen along the old towpath Trækstien
Self-guided walking holiday from Silkeborg to Bjerringbro
Your walking holiday starts in the beautiful Lake District capital of Silkeborg. It is worth spending some time exploring the town that has many interesting attractions, including Hjejlen, the world’s oldest original coal-fired paddle steamer still in operation, as well as the AQUA Aquarium & Wildlife Park, Museum Silkeborg where you can see the famous bog body Tollundmanden and a museum dedicated to the famous Danish painter Asger Jorn.
From Silkeborg, you follow the old Trækstien (towpath) along Gudenåen and the adjoining lakes. Historically, the trail was created for horses and bargemen, who once pulled great barges filled with goods between the towns of Silkeborg and Randers. Today it is a beautiful walking trail through Jutland’s tranquil lakelands. You will stay overnight at two of the charming old inns used by the bargemen in the 18th century.
On the last part of the track towards Bjerrringbro you will walk along the lake Tange Sø, which is the largest artificial lake in Denmark. At the north end of the lake you find the largest hydro-electric power station in Denmark, where you can visit Energimuseet (The Energy Museum), which offers a variety of experiences for the whole family. After another few kilometers along Gudenåen you reach Bjerringbro, where the tour ends.
If you wish to take an extra overnight stay, you can either stay in Bjerringbro or take the train to Silkeborg or Viborg and spend a night in one of these interesting towns.
|4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS||From €550 per person sharing*
*A single supplement charge will apply for solo walkers
||You will stay in a very comfortable hotel and in two charming inns.
Some of the accommodation providers we work with are listed below. If one of the places are occupied, then we will inform you about it and try to find an alternative.
You can book additional night(s) at any of the accommodations along the way.
|AVAILABILITY||You can start on any day of the week, subject to availability, between April 15th and September 15th.|
Day 1: Arrival in Silkeborg
Your hiking holiday starts in Silkeborg, where you stay in the beautiful Vejlsøhus Hotel scenically located by the lake Vejlsø. Just next door you find AQUA Aquarium & Wildlife Park – the biggest freshwater aqaurium in Northern Europe – which is free to visit for guests at Vejlsøhus. If possible you should arrive early, so you have time to explore Silkeborg that has a lot to offer tourists. We recommend a trip on the beautiful lakes with Hjejlen, which is the world’s oldest original coal-fired paddle steamer. You can also visit Museum Silkeborg, which exhibits the famous bog body Tollundmanden or if you are into art the Museum Jorn dedicated to the famous Danish painter Asger Jorn is a good option.
Day 2: From Silkeborg to Svostrup
Distance: 12 km | Ascent: 48 m | Descent: 48 m | Time: 4 hrs approx.
On your first hiking day you start out from Silkeborg and walk along Gudenåen (Denmark’s longest river) and its adjoining lakes following Trækstien, which is the old towpath of Gudenåen. Historically, the trail was created for horses and bargemen, who once pulled great barges filled with goods between the towns of Silkeborg and Randers. Barge traffic on Gudenåen had its heyday in Silkeborg after the opening of the paper mill in 1845. Back then, it was the only way of transporting large quantities of goods to and from the town. The barges could be seen sailing on Gudenåen right up until the beginning of World War I.
The trail has been extensively renovated over the last few years, with a raised gravel track enabling you to walk with dry feet in this flood-prone area. On the first part of the track you walk along the lake Silkeborg Langsø, before continuing along Gudenåen. Shortly before Svostrup the river widens out in the lake Sminge Sø; famous for its bird life, which you can observe from a bird tower. In Sminge Sø, Gudenåen is joined by another big stream: Gjern Å. Shortly after that you reach the old inn, Svostrup Kro, where the bargemen traditionally stopped for a well-deserved rest and refreshment!
Overnight: Svostrup Kro
Day 3: From Svostrup to Kongensbro
Distance: 10 km | Ascent: 41 m | Descent: 44 m | Time: 3 hrs approx.
Today you continue along Trækstien towards Kongensbro. This part of Trækstien was previously susceptible to flooding by Gudenåen, but in the spring of 2019 the path was renovated and raised, so that it now remains dry throughout most of the season.
Shortly after having left Svostrup you will see Tvilum church on the opposite site of the river. The church was built in 1250 as an abbey for the Order of Saint Augustine. It was also used for an overnight stay by the king of Denmark in medieval times, on his travels around in Jutland, as evidenced by some newly discovered murals dating from 1350.
You continue your walk along the river in an idyllic and peaceful landscape, finishing up at Kongensbro Kro, another charming inn with an atmosphere of times gone by. In earlier times the inn was an important junction for the traffic between Silkeborg/Randers and Aarhus/Viborg.
Overnight: Kongensbro Kro
Day 4: From Kongensbro to Bjerringbro
Distance: 18 km | Ascent: 94 m | Descent: 104 m | Time: 5 hrs approx.
From Kongensbro Kro you continue along Trækstien, which at some places due to flooding has been diverted into the woodlands along Gudenåen. After seven kilometers you pass a bridge to the village of Ans, where it’s possible to take a small detour for lunch at the local inn.
After Ans, Gudenåen runs into Tange Sø, which is the largest artificial lake in Denmark. The old towpath now lies at the bottom of the lake together with the remains of an old rural hamlet. You follow the trail along the eastern side of Tange Sø and at the north end of the lake you reach Gudenåcentralen (Tangeværket), the largest hydro-electric power station in Denmark, which opened in 1921 and once provided 25 % of the electricity used in Jutland. The power station is now home to an Energy Museum, with cafés and a variety of experiences for the whole family. From 2019 you can experience a new exhibition “Life in Change”, which illustrates the life of the Danes in a world of climate change. The new exhibition is intended to stimulate discussion on how to make a contribution.
After another four kilometers along Gudenåen you reach Bjerringbro, where the tour ends.
From Bjerringbro you can either take the train back to Silkeborg or you can take an extra overnight stay in Bjerringbro or take the train to Viborg (17 minutes) for an extra stay. As one of the oldest towns in Jutland and as an old episcopal residence, Viborg has many places of interest and is a very pleasant lakeside town.