Posts Tagged With: Passau

Travel the Danube for a Bavarian experience

Searching for history, culture and experience you arrive into Germany to embark on a journey along the Danube river. One of the longest rivers in Europe and many cities that access the river, the best place to start your travels is from memorable and medieval Germany.

The heartland of the river, the Danube in Germany offers you charming towns along the river that are filled with historic castles, beautiful cathedrals and culture that goes back thousands of years.

With many towns and villages to explore, there are three key German towns along the Danube river and the “The Route of Emperors and Kings of Bavaria”. A dedicated cycling path also runs along the Danube river for an active experience while traveling offering the opportunity for visiting multiple sites along the way. 

German towns along the Danube river offer a unique travel experience, these are some of what you will find on our itinerary when visiting the Bavarian Danube:

Nuremberg

The second largest city in Bavaria after Munich is where you will begin your Danube journey. Although technically located on the Pegnitz river, a tributary of the Main, Nuremberg is located at the Rhine – Main – Danube Canal making it a popular starting point for navigating the Danube river. 

 Nuremberg is best known for its role in World War II Germany, the Nazi Rally grounds and the Nuremberg Trials at the Justice Palace. There are many tours and underground experiences offered in Nuremberg for World War II enthusiasts. 

Not just historic, a city of art and culture, there are many attractions to explore including the medieval fortified Nuremberg Castle complex in the altstadt (old town) and the twin towered St. Lorenz medieval/gothic church built in the 1400’s and it’s three organs. 

Nuremberg is a walking city and exploring the area you can follow the old city walls finding medieval gates and towers throughout the city. Visiting the old town squares and the Hauptmarkt (open market) to interact with the locals shopping for fresh fruits, popular local pastries and a la carte dining options. The market is sitting in front of the Roman Catholic Frauenkirche church, another site you will want to step into and explore. 

Foodies will enjoy the range of offerings available in Nuremberg with its many restaurants featuring traditional Franconian fare and popular local offerings like lebkuchen German cakes and Nuremberg sausages.

Recommendation: Plan time to relax at one of the many beer gardens scattered throughout the city of Nuremberg.

Visitor friendly, Nuremberg’s old town is a pedestrian only area where you will find many options for shopping and finding specialty items. This is also the location where many festivals occur throughout the year. Additional shopping options can also be found in the Handwerkerhof area of medieval village shops featuring independent businesses selling handcrafted goods. 

Regensburg

Departing Nuremberg you will travel up river to Regensburg. Located where the Danube river meets the Regen and Naab rivers in the eastern part of lower Germany, Regensburg is not as populated as Nuremberg, yet it is still ranked the 4th largest city in the Bavarian region of Germany. A cultural center, the city played an important role during rule of Germany by the Holy Roman Empire. 

A UNESCO World Heritage site as one of the largest “old towns” in Germany, Regensburg attracts visitors to its mostly medieval town filled with many well known sites, historic buildings, gardens and parks. One of these that is highly recommended is the Dom Cathedral. Built starting in 1275 and finished in 1869 the complex is primarily made up of Gothic architecture however you will also find adjoining chapels still in existence that predate the Dom dating back to the 8th century among newer styles of architecture and notable art works. 

As you walk the town, you will find many medieval churches each offering its own stories that are visit worthy among other architectural treats like the Porta Praetoria fortress walls built by the Romans.  Other recommended visits is the medieval stone bridge which dates back to the 11th century that was used during the crusades to cross the Danube.

A not to be missed dining experience is the Sausage Kitchen. A popular destination for both visitors and locals, it is the oldest public restaurant in the world actively serving guests since the 11th century. 

Passau

As you journey along the Danube following the famed Route of Emperors and Bavarian Kings, you will pass historic castles and beautiful landscapes along the way as you travel to Passau. 

Referred to as the “City of Three Rivers” because the Danube joins the Inn river from the south and the Ilz river from the north. Passau is a smaller city then the other two but is also well known for its gothic and baroque architecture. 

You will first notice when walking the cobble-stoned streets of Passau’s Old City (die alstadt) the Veste Oberhaus Fortress which can be seen high on a mountain top facing the city. Today the museum of Passau, it is home to an art gallery, historic collections from the Bavarian region, collections symbolic to Passau’s past and an observatory. 

Tip: A highlight of visiting the fortress is the 18th Century viewing platform with fabulous views of historic Passau and the rivers below. 

Visiting the Gothic town you will find there are many hospitable and site worthy churches within Passau to visit however, a not to be missed site is the Italian Baroque Stephansdom (St. Stephen’s Cathedral). Notable as having one of the largest pipe organs in the world with over 17,000 pipes. Concerts are held daily during the warmer summer months and worth scheduling your visit around to experience the organ in action for yourself.

Passau has a large University that populates almost a ⅓ of the town with students who bring a bustling excitement to the city’s taverns, restaurants and beer gardens scattered throughout. 

Your journey as you are transported along the Danube’s Route of Emperors and Bavarian Kings will continue from Passau on into some of the beautiful river towns of Slovakia, Austria, including Vienna and Hungary until you reach your final destination in Budapest. 

There are so many reasons to visit Germany, an enjoyable and unique experience is to travel the inland waterways exploring the towns and villages of Germany and other neighboring countries from your boutique floating hotel. For more information on a Danube river cruise, head to our website.

Categories: Eco-Friendly, Experience, River Cruise, Sustainable Travel, Travel, Travel Bucket List | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment
 
 

Top Golf Experiences can be found along the Danube River

Experiencing world class golf while on a vacation is usually a must do for the avid golf player and the travel itinerary is designed around the golf experience. But Imagine visiting Central Europe’s most glorious cities like Budapest in Hungary, Passau in Germany and Prague in the Czech Republic immersing in the cities whole also playing some of the world’s top courses. 

A Danube river cruise itinerary will lead you up the river from Budapest to Vilshofen, cruising through the unforgettable Danube Bend in Hungary and the Wachau Valley in Austria with stops in historical Vienna & Salzburg to explore the Austrian cities of music and palaces. 

Cruising at night allows for plenty of extra time during the day to enjoy the ports of visitation after a round of golf at one of the renowned local courses. 

No matter your level or experience with golf, even if just starting your time on the links, following are 5 courses that can be enjoyed while traveling on a 12 day cruise on and along the Danube river:

Budapest 

Pannonia Golf Course

Hungary’s capital city is actually two cities separated by the Danube river and accessed by the 19th Century Chain Bridge that connects the historic hilly Buda district to the modern flat Pest. You will spend 2 days immersing in Budapest’s many sites before boarding your floating hotel and enjoying your first morning of 18 holes. 

Located 45 minutes outside of the city of Budapest is the Pannonia Golf course. Designed for European and APGA Tour standards to offer a challenging and yet relaxing golfing opportunity. Sitting along a valley provides a hilled course featuring varied fairways, and eight water hazards to provide challenge to your game. Accommodating all levels of skill so players can enjoy the opportunity to experience the course at their own pace. 

Bratislava

Penati Golf Course

Leaving Budapest, you will head northwest along the Danube to your next stop Bratislava. The capital of Slovakia, at the border of Austria and Hungary, the 18th century pedestrian town is your next stop. From the port you catch views of the Bratislava Castle sitting on a hill  above watching over the historic town. 

Your private driver will take you on a scenic drive through the forested countryside of Slovakia to one of Europe’s top rated golf resorts, Penati, near the town of Sinica. A member of the World of Leading Golf organization, you will play 18 holes of the 36 hole course that sits on 536 acres of property. The Nicklaus designed courses are laid out among the pine forests to accommodate all levels of golfers and styles of play. 

After your morning round and drive back to Bratislava, enjoy a beer or glass of local wine in one of the cozy cafes or pubs within the historic district. 

Krems

Diamond Course

After a full day in Vienna, your next stop is to the lower Austria region and the riverside town of historic Krems in the Wachau Valley. 

A quick scenic drive along the Danube takes you to the Diamond Course. A European Tour destination, the 18 hole championship course is renowned as one of the world’s top public courses. Set around a 25 acre lake, also offering 12 and 9 hole courses provides the opportunity for a slower more relaxed golfing experience. Enjoy lunch before driving back to Krems to enjoy a glass of locally produced world class wine from the nearby sourced Wachau Valley region. 

Passau

Beckenbauer Golf Course

Having enjoyed a full day in Linz and a visit to the beautiful mountainous region of Salzburg, your next stop along the Danube is just past the Austrian border in Germany. Passau is known as the “Three Rivers City” for its location where the Danube, Inn and Ilz rivers meet. Arriving into the city you can’t miss the 13th century fortress sitting high above the Baroque historic city. 

The Beckenbauer Golfplatz offers a world rated championship course, and is the host of the annual Porsche European Open each fall. Designed by a Masters champion, the meadow and river surrounding the hand-mowed course offer lush greens and enjoyable fairways. 

Upon your arrival back into Passau, enjoy visiting the iconic St. Stephen’s Cathedral and her 17,974 pipe organ before the ship departs for your final port in Vilshofen.

Prague 

Albatross Golf Resort

Upon disembarking your ship, you will be transferred to Prague, stopping in the Rhine wine town of Rudesheim for an enjoyable visit and stop for lunch before continuing on to your Northern passage to glorious Prague. 

The capital of the Czech Republic is called “the golden city of a hundred spires” for the number of beautiful cathedrals each featuring pointed spires. You will have plenty of time during your 3 day post cruise visit, to explore the historic area, the town square, as many of the Gothic churches as you care to visit, baroque buildings and Prague’s most notable location, the Charles Bridge before your relaxing day of world class golf. 

Your final golf experience will be at the Albatross Golf Resort, a short 30 minute drive from your hotel in the historic old town to Prague’s European tournament golf destination for 18 holes. Considered one of the top 100 courses in Europe, Albatross has been named Golf Resort of the year in 2011 and 2012. Offering a full option of state of the art facilities, you will find this course the ultimate challenge for your final golf experience. 

AmaWaterways Golf Program

The AmaMagna

The custom designed concierge golf program was created specifically for AmaWaterways newest and most innovative ship, the AmaMagna. The 12 day program features 2 nights in Budapest, with 7 nights onboard and 3 nights in Prague included in a custom designed golfing travel experience. 

The program was designed to seamlessly provide a unique travel experience customized to the guest and a bucket list golfing experience. In addition to playing some of Europe’s most prestigious courses, inclusive in the experience is private transfer between your luxury accommodations and the courses by Mercedes, tee-time, practice balls, golf cart and lunch in the clubhouse once you complete your play time.

To learn more about the river cruise experience and how it can be a great fit for your next travel experience, visit our website

Categories: Active Travel, Bucket List, Experience, River Cruise, Travel Bucket List, Wellness | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment
 
 

3 “Must See” Breathtaking Cathedrals along the Danube River

Spanning central and eastern Europe, the Danube is Europe’s second-longest river at 1,770 miles flowing through or bordering the countries of Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova and Ukraine before draining into the Black Sea.

The Danube flows along the heritage route of Emperors and Kings and some of Europe’s most magnificent cities like, Nuremberg, Regensburg and Passau in Germany, plus four capital cities; Vienna in Austria, Bratislava in Slovakia, Budapest in Hungary and Belgrade in Serbia, making it a popular river for cruising itineraries.

Each country along the Danube has a different culture and different stories related to the river and yet something they all have in common are beautiful cathedrals dating back hundreds of years. 

While visiting Europe coincidentally 3 of the most amazing cathedrals are all named St. Stephen’s. But this is where the similarity ends because each offers a very different and unique experience that makes them all worth visiting. 

Dom St. Stephen, Passau – Germany

Located where the German border meets the Austrian border is the city of Passau in the lower Bavaria region of Germany. 

Within the larger city of Passau is the old town which is popular with visitors for its gothic and baroque architecture. 

In the old town is St. Stephen’s Cathedral, built in 1688, today a Catholic church (the diocese of Passau) was created in the baroque style. She is home to the largest cathedral organ in Europe boasting 5 separate organ sections that plays still today from one console. 

A gilded pulpit and ten side altars painted by important German artists of the 17th and 18th century.Not to be missed are the church bells of the north and south towers, the dome frescos that run the central nave and the choir and of course the daily organ concert at noon. Note: get there early as tickets tend to sell out during busy tourism periods. 

St. Stephen’s Cathedral, Vienna – Austria

In eastern Austria along the Danube is Austria’s capital city Vienna. One of the most beautiful cities in Europe with many Imperial palaces from influences of a long history of royalty, and the music of  some of her famous local residents including Mozart and Beethoven. 

Also dedicated to the same bishop as in Passau, St. Stephen, within the central part of historic Vienna is the mother church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, commonly known as Stephansdom. Originally built in 1187, the Romanesque and Gothic cathedral that can be seen today from the square outside the front of the cathedral (Stephansplatz) is considered to be the most important religious building and most recognizable symbol in Vienna having stood through many historical events and survived World War II.

From the moment you enter the giant doors at the front of the cathedral, the 18 beautiful alters along the nave and high altar at the opposite end draws you in to view the artistry of the chapels within the north and south towers and to explore the crypt and catacombs on the basement level. 

Worth noting, this was the parish of Amadeus Mozart who was an adjunct music director for the church, he was married in the church, baptized his children here and his funeral was held here in the Chapel of the Cross. Mozart is buried at nearby St. Marx cemetery.  

St. Stephen Basilica, Budapest – Hungary

Budapest the capital of Hungary, is separated into the old and new by the Danube river and the modern Chain Bridge that connects the historic and hilly Buda with the flat Pest. In the Pest district is landmark cathedral Szent Istvan Bazilika (St. Stephen’s Basilica).

One of the most beautiful churches in the country is a Roman Catholic cathedral built in 1851. Designed in a Neoclassic style, she is most identified by her Neo-Renaissance dome and is also one of the most visited sites in Hungary for her beauty. 

Named after the first King of Hungary, St. Stephen I, whose right hand is kept in a reliquary of the church, you can best see the greek cross layout of the basilica from the large square outside of her main entrance. 

The beauty of her architecture and artistry within the building, you will want to explore the interior of the church, climb the 364 stairs to the top of the dome (an elevator is available) and stop at the top to overlook the views of the city.

Tip: St. Stephen’s is one of the most photographed buildings in the world, when we visited, we stopped by as the sun was setting, the reflections of the sun onto the buildings created a breathtaking vision.

Beyond the amazingly beautiful cathedrals, there are many reasons to visit each of these beautiful central European cities. To explore these and a few other towns and villages along the way, a river cruise is recommended for the most enjoyment with the least travel time. 

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