Our boat, Maria Theresa overnighted in Passau and this morning we had a choice of activities. Walking tour of the town, a hike along the river and hills, a 6 mile bike ride, or staying on the ship and relaxing. I bet you all thought I choose the later but no—-3 of our group, including me, did the 2 hour walking tour of Passau and the other 5, including Ben did the bike tour. Both groups had a great time and it was fun hearing stories of each adventure over lunch when we returned.
We had a local lady for our tour and learned a lot about Passau. It’s unique location where three rivers , Danube, Inn, and Ill, come together has made the town a one of a kind cultural and artistic center. Passau, Germany is located near the Austrian and Czech border. Its baroque historical center with its tiny narrow and winding streets and alley-ways make the town extraordinarily beautiful. Passau was first mentioned as a Roman provincial town. The city began in 739AD with the establishment of the episcopal diocese. In the 13th century, bishops became the rulers of the small principality of Passau and in 1803, it became a Bavarian city.
Highlights on the city are the conjunction point of the three rivers, the fortress “Veste Oberhausen”, is one of Europe’s largest preserved castle complexes and St. Stephen’s Church, a beautiful baroque, Italian church that is home to the largest church organ in the world. Unfortunately, we did not get to hear it as the 12:00 noon concerts begin on May 2.
We did a little shopping and bought some German souvenirs since tomorrow we move on to Austria. We returned to the boat and I was a little apprehensive about Ben’s bike trip since he has not ridden a bike in about 40 years. I expected him to be passed out in our room but nooooo!! He and the guys had gone on a walk about town. Soon we all met for lunch and enjoyed hearing about the bike adventure. Lars, their guide must have been quite a masculine specimen as the most discussion was about him. The afternoon was spent relaxing and watching the boat begin its trip down the Danube and the beautiful scenery along the river. Going through the locks was really interesting. Ben and I had a 2 hour nap with the Austrian landscape passing by our window. Dinner was awesome with beef tenderloin and a wonderful chocolate soufflé for dessert. Early to bed because tomorrow we will do an all day trip to Salzburg—-Sound of Music country.