Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three
Day three of our Danube River cruise began bright and early already docked in Passau, Germany. Passau is at the confluence of three rivers: the Danube, the Inn, and the Ilz Rivers, and borders Austria which lies directly south. The population is about 50,000 with 12,000 of those being students at the local University of Passau.
A thirteenth-century fortress looms over the town, the Veste Oberhaus. It houses a museum, a restaurant, a theatre, and a youth hostel. For most of its time, however, it was the stronghold of the Bishop of Passau.
Unfortunately, Passau is very prone to flooding. When surrounded by three rivers that’s a hazard that comes with the territory; 2013 saw the worst flooding in 500 years. Our guide told us that people do not live in the first level of their homes if they can help it; makes a lot of sense when you see how high the water can get.
Passau is also home to the gorgeous, baroque, St. Stephen’s Cathedral. There have been several churches built on this site, the existing one was completed in 1693. This cathedral houses the largest cathedral organ in the world; it has 17,774 pipes which can all be played from the gallery. Sadly, we didn’t get to hear it. The baroque style of the church is very dramatic and theatrical. Soaring arches, paintings, and embellishments abound to come together in a glorious, overblown, yet beautiful way.
We had to be back on the ship by 10:30am as we were sailing to Linz, Austria. This stretch of the cruise was perhaps my favourite time while we were just cruising. We swept past rolling hills, farmland, and small communities. Everything was so green as the ship looped its way through this very twisty-turny piece of the Danube. This was the afternoon Mike and I had a championship putting tournament on the sundeck much to the amusement of several of the crew. I will not say who won as it wasn’t me.
We didn’t arrive in Linz until close to 5:30 in the afternoon where we would be docked until 9:45pm. Linz was having a street performer festival and was very crowded with happy people gathered to see the entertainment. We didn’t spend too much time there as we wanted to get back to the ship in time for dinner, although we did wander through the main square and some side streets and admired the buildings and watched a few performances.
The evening on board was spent with some leisurely dining, and then drinks and conversation in the Horizon Lounge while listening to the in-house pianist, Gianni. A great way to end the day.
I will leave you with a piece of street art we came across in Linz.
Did you miss Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Two?
Stay tuned for Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Four – Melk and Dürnstein!