Passau, Germany

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Cruising to Passau, Germany

The picturesque town of Passau is stacked atop a narrow peninsula that drives a sharp and pointed end into the confluence of three rivers - the Danube, the Inn and the Ilz. So it's little wonder that it's a river cruise paradise and a veritable hive of culture.
For centuries, its vital waterways have furnished Passau with wealth, with traders coming far and wide to make use of the town as an important market place where they could buy and sell important commodities including Bohemian salt, central Europe's so-called White Gold. But that wasn't all they traded, with the town witnessing a fairly dramatic exchange of cultures thanks to its strategic location - particularly between the nearby countries of Austria and the modern day Czech Republic.
Passau is located in Bavaria, however, and it is the German culture that dominates. It's easy to find lederhosen and dirndl in the shops to take home as souvenirs, and of course, good beer can be found in abundance. Passau has five breweries and each restaurant and bar is associated with one of them. There is Bavarian cuisine to sample, including pretzels and sweet mustard. Keep your eye out for special dishes such as Schweinsbraten (meat and vegetables in a special sauce) and Leberknödelsuppe (beef liver meatballs). Cabbage rolls and suckling pig are also popular options.
Where activities are concerned, you'll want to explore at least some of the Bavarian forest mountain range, which is accessible by car. The national park here has many types of local animals to discover. Then there is the beautiful old town, which is made up of an assortment of twisting turning streets, lined with hundreds of fine and intricate old buildings. Be sure to visit St Stephen's Cathedral, which has the world's second largest cathedral organ.
Passau, Germany

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