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Wedged onto a triangle of land at the confluence of the Danube and the Inn rivers, Passau was the frontier of the Roman empire before the Bavarian tribes arrived and built a city. The pedestrian-only Ludwigstrasse runs through its center and is best explored on foot. Hollgasse is Passau’s Bohemian quarter, a narrow alley filled with little shops and artisans’ studios. At its end, the Rathaus (City Hall) overlooks a broad plaza along the river and is worth entering to see the stained glass, gold stucco-work and murals of scenes from the Niebulung legends. St. Stephen’s is the largest baroque cathedral north of the Alps, rebuilt by Italian ...

Wedged onto a triangle of land at the confluence of the Danube and the Inn rivers, Passau was the frontier of the Roman empire before the Bavarian tribes arrived and built a city. The pedestrian-only Ludwigstrasse runs through its center and is best explored on foot. Hollgasse is Passau’s Bohemian quarter, a narrow alley filled with little shops and artisans’ studios. At its end, the Rathaus (City Hall) overlooks a broad plaza along the river and is worth entering to see the stained glass, gold stucco-work and murals of scenes from the Niebulung legends. St. Stephen’s is the largest baroque cathedral north of the Alps, rebuilt by Italian architects after a 1662 fire. Inside is the largest church organ in the world, connected by 80 miles of wiring, with 17,774 pipes and 233 stops. Organ concerts May-October include a lot of modern works. Passau was at the end of the Glass Road, whose 100 glassmakers’ work is presented in the Glasmuseum Passau, a private collection of glass works from the Baroque and Rococo through Art Deco and Moderne periods. Above the Danube, on the opposite shore, stands the 12th-century Oberhaus, or Upper Castle, now a museum showing the daily life in a castle and for tradesmen and peasants. Get a birds-eye view of the confluence from the Veste Oberhaus fortress, or a more intimate look from the excellent Three Rivers Cruise.

Stillman Rogers
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Stillman Rogers has written more than two dozen guidebooks, including Adventure Guide to Canada's Atlantic Provinces, Guide to Eastern Canada, and Adventure Guide to the Chesapeake.

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: A town in lower Bavaria, in southeast Germany. It is situated at the point where the river Inn and the river Ilz meet the Danube.
  • Language: German
  • Currency: EURO
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
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    Spring, summer or fall