Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three – Passau and Linz

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three

Passau

Our Emerald Waterways Danube Delights day three of our 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.

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

The Veste Oberhaus

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.

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

High water marks over 500 years

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.

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

St. Stephen’s Cathedral and the organ

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

St. Stephen’s painted ceiling

Just Cruising

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.

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

Cruising between Passau and Linz

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

The hills seem to drop right into the river

Linz

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.

Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

The main square was very crowded for the festival

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!

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Emerald Waterways Danube Delights Day Three - Passau and Linz

Comments 14

  1. I love history, cathedrals, architecture, great food and beer, then I would probably have an amazing time in Passau 🙂 The city really offered a picturesque historic center with many sights ! I just came back from 2 weeks trip in Austria but I didn’t visit Linz…

  2. Seeing this town having survived the flooding really gives me hope that Houston will be okay… Thank you so much for sharing this!! xx

  3. You know.. it never occurs to me to cruise! I always think of cruises as gargantuan ships, but this sounds intimate and lovely. What a fun adventure, I can’t wait to hear more, and hope you’re planning to discuss your cabin and the boat!!!

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  4. Such a lovely post! I adore how you discover the city, the splendid catheral with magical organs. lastly the cruising time I’m so amaze cruise is one of my bucketlist. hopefully I can do it one day. thanks for sharing!

  5. I would love to take a river cruise like this one and cannot believe this area floods so much!! Holy hannah, I don’t know how people can not live in the first floor of their houses. But it looks like a fun and historic place to explore!!

  6. I would love to do a river cruise like this. The scenery looks absolutely stunning!

    On another note the flood line is really scary, especially after what has been happening in Texas with Harvey. It is sad that people can’t live in the first floors of their homes. I hope it doesn’t come to that in Houston.

  7. I am a huge fan of the Danube. We have done day cruises but nothing longer. Anyway, we have loved those days and are looking forward to more cruising along the river. It is interesting to see the flood levels in Passau. They have the same thing in Spitz (Austria).

  8. The levels that the water is reaching is crazy! Totally understand about the not living on the 1st floor. That Cathedral is beautiful! Thanks for sharing these beautiful cities

  9. I didn’t realise how intense river cruises were – two towns in one day, wow!

    The high water marks in Passau look pretty scary, especially when you can see where the hand of the guide is in relation to the marks!

  10. Love Germany all together and Linz looks beautiful, so traditional with colourful houses! My family lives in Bavaria so we tend to travel across Germany & Austria on a regular basis. Actually, we are going next week and visiting Oktoberfest as part of our trip!

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