|Regensburg Bratwurstchen are famous - and delicious!
We actually did the Danube Gorge cruise in the afternoon, first spending time in Regensburg. This was good because the light was better in both places.
The walking tour of Regensburg started at 9.00 this morning. Regensburg has many mediaeval buildings that survived the war and its patricians' houses are famous in Germany. Things to see include St. Peter's Cathedral, the exterior of the Goliath House, the Roman Porta Pretoria - now leading to a pleasant outdoor restaurant in the Abbey precincts - and the restored Town Hall. Don't miss the Alte Kapelle, a white and gold Old Chapel that contains some stunning Rococo stuccoes , it really is worth seeing, as you can see from the number of shots we took: on our trip, I think we were the only ones who sought it out.
After the walking tour, you're allowed some free time. The boat is docked right in the city, not too far from Regensburg's famous Stone Bridge ("Steinerne Brücke", built 1135-1146) across the Danube. And for those who enjoy Bratwurst (for which the town is famed), the oldest Bratwurst restaurant anywhere can be found on the riverfront. As you walk towards the city centre, follow your nose and the waft of cooking sausages will lead you there.
The place got really busy at lunchtime and I stood discreetly by the kitchen entrance to take snaps, hoping that the chefs didn't mind that this silly tourist was more interested in taking shots of sausages cooking, rather than eating them.
For those who are desperate for shopping by this stage of the trip, the guide will take you to DRUBBA where a wide (perhaps too wide) range of souvenirs of German persuasion can be found. Those in search of cookoo clocks will be in their element (yes, they will ship). The twisting back streets of this picturesque city are also full of interesting little shops.
Danube Gorge cruise boat
After lunch, we departed for our Danube Gorge cruise to Weltenburg Abbey. The cruise down the Gorge is done on a smaller tour boat as the waters are quite shallow in some parts. The landscape was beautiful and we all crowded in the open deck at the back of the boat, soaking up the scenery. But a tip: before too long, it got too hot and everyone tried to get a place in the shade.
I personally felt that the cruise was more enjoyable than Weltenburg Abbey itself, which was undergoing much refurbishment. For those who got thirsty during the cruise, there is a bustling beer garden/restaurant within the compounds of the Abbey. Tony tried one of the many beers but it wasn't as dark as his favorite drink.
Now beware those who have mobility problems: from the Abbey, it is quite a hike back to the coach. If you do have problems walking distances, do check with your tour director to see if this is still the case. An enterprising individual had set up a sort of streamlined bicycle rickshaw (check the photo) taxi service between the bus park and the Abbey, so this is a possibility.