Monday, May 20, 2013

Viking's Grand European River Cruise: Regensburg, Germany

Viking River Cruise, Day 9:  Regensburg, Germany (Facebook collage)
(click any collage to enlarge)

This was one of the rare days on this adventure when we had an all-morning scenic cruise and needed it, just like the doctor ordered!

Everyone else needed it, too.

Can you tell?!?!

We even did the scenic part, enjoying the sights as we passed by.

And when we finally docked in Regensburg after lunch, we were ready.
It had been a choppy Danube that morning, splashing our cabin windows.
A good day for a bath!

Did I mention that this was Sunday?  PALM SUNDAY, to be exact.  In fact, by the time you finish this post, I guarentee you will be so churched-out, you may never want to see another one till...Day 10.  HA!

The planned excursion for the day was a walking tour of one of Germany's best-preserved medieval cities, Regensburg.  However, after hearing about some other goodies at our briefing the previous evening, we opted to go out on our own to do our own thing.

 We walked straightaway to St. Emmeram's Basilica, now known as Schloss Thurn and Taxis.
It's a Benedictine monastery founded c. 739.  My kind of O.L.D.

Don't get me started on how over-the-top opulent it was!
Almost every square inch was covered in gold or art.

To be honest, I'm still shaking my head about it all.  I don't know how to process it.

And to show you how it affected us both....

...we immediately walked towards city center and found a place to just relax for awhile.
Of course, it was freezing cold and we needed a potty break...before tackling the rest of the churches!

Since St.Peter's Cathedral is Regensburg's biggest church, we went there first, on the market square.
Mention of the church goes all the way back to the 700's.  O.L.D.
And the spires are 350 ft. high, visible from all over the city.

Most of the stained-glass windows were installed in the 14th century and still survive today.

Not the same feel as St. Emmeram.  But still O.L.D.

Coming out of St. Peter's, we turned the corner there on the Domplatz to see this.
The St. Ulrich Church is getting a facelift.  And how's that for a zodiac clock!

On the other side of St. Peter's, we walked into St. Johann's collegiate church, founded in 1127.

 And then the Neupfarrkirche Evangelical Lutheran Church, from 1540, 
built on the site of the former Jewish quarter.
See how plain it looks!

The Alte Kapelle, from 875, wasn't "open" but we could go inside and peek through the "gates."

A wee church, full of character...and...more opulence!

Last but not least, we entered the Niedermunster Abbey, from 788.

This was probably my favorite of the 6 churches we entered that day.
I fell in love with the organ and the ceiling!
And as we left, ladies were preparing Easter goodies to sell out in the foyer.

See what I mean about being churched-out...on Palm Sunday?!

So, ladies and gentlemen...this is Regensburg.

Impressions.  Impressions.  Impressions.

We understand, of course, how and why Viking picks and chooses these UNESCO World sites.

How can you not love a city like this!

It was time to go back to the boat for supper after a full afternoon...but not before we walked across Germany's oldest bridge from 1135, the Steinerne Brucke (Stone Bridge):

The knights of the 2nd and 3rd Crusades used it to cross the Danube on their way to the Holy Land!

From the bridge you see the shoreline of the Danube...

...and then look back to the iconic buildings of the city center.

Just when we think it couldn't possibly get better, it does.  What a day!
You'll hear that more than once, you know.


  1. Every time when we thought, it is not going to better like this, we enter a church and it is even more beautiful than the last one we entered.
    I was glad we found the coffee-shop, we warmed up and were ready for more impressions and fabulous scenery.
    A big thank you is in order for this major job, putting all your pictures in these collages.
    I re-live the cruise over and over again.
    Fabulous shots. Schloss Thurn and Taxis was so over the top. Our word 'tax' is related to Taxis.
    I just realized, we had the most beautiful weather, cold but dry and sometimes sunny.

    1. When you told me there were 28 collages in this post, I said NO WAY! Unbelievable. Well, we really did see a LOT that day. It all still blows my mind. Thank you for sharing it all with me...again and again.

  2. What a totally charming city! I love the colorfully painted buildings. That St. Peter's cathedral is 400 years older than Chartres!!

    1. When you give historical scale like that, Ruth, between one church and another, it sure adds to the awe, doesn't it! Thank you for joining our journey here. :)

  3. Speechless over the beauty!

  4. I'd love to do this with Jimmy but he gets terribly sea sick so I'm thrilled you're taking me along for the ride. When I saw the photo where the waves were up to your cabin window I knew that jimmy would be so miserable on that boat.

    1. Actually, Mad, this is important to say: we never once felt any of the waves, even on this day. The rivers have no effect whatsoever on these least spoken by one who has been on the big ocean ships! Jimmy would have more motion on his lake boats than on this ship. Seriously.

  5. Yahooooo!! 1st time in a year or more I've actually been able to post to your blog! Maybe because I'm posting feom my phone and not my computer?

    1. Needless to say, I was surprised and delighted to see you here. It doesn't make any sense to me but YAY. Thanks for trying again. :)

  6. That was definitely an overdose of churches.... but they are all so beautiful. And I always find it incredible that these wonderful and terribly expensive buildings were created simply because of religious beliefs, faith, dedication.... while the common people who paid for them lived in tiny houses, scratching out a living!

    1. Oh, yes, Sham. Lots of mixed emotions when we walk into these churches, knowing how they were funded anf built on the backs of the poor. It's hard to know what to think! Astrid and I usually see them as museums instead of places of worship. Sad but true. :(

  7. Oh my goodness. I'd love to be all-churched-out for a change. What beautiful old churches they have. And what craftsmen those people were for building these gems of churches.

    1. Indeed, Marie. I don't want to get into the discussion about where all the money cane from and all the blood, sweat and tears. But these places have stood for a long time, bearing testament to the incredible craftsmanship of years gone by.

  8. It is hard to comprehend that people would be tucked away in a book when such VIEWS are to be enjoyed! (and photographed!) St. Emmerams at least has white walls - not so drab! It has all the gold and glitz, but I find myself awed by the woodwork. Regensburg is a storybook, that's for sure. Just... Wow.

    I'll be back to catch up on more. This was a whirlwind! I can't believe all you saw! "Appetizers", indeed!

    1. I know what you mean about reading a book, Margaret...which we obviously did not do. HA! We'll never forget Regensburg. And thanks for catching up with me/us!

  9. So wistful to see what we missed. Regensburg was under water along the river when we were there June 6. It was a 'bus-cruise', we never left the dock and missed most of the stops. Maybe someday . . .

    1. Ohhhh, so sorry, Anonymous! We watched the floods carefully once we were back home, thankful we had missed them but wondering about all of you who would have such a hard time of it. Well, in that regard, I'm so glad I was able to post these images for you!