Earlier this week I left Germany and made my way to England! I have about a week left in Europe before I return home to the states. I can’t believe how fast time has flown, these last three months have felt like a whirlwind! Today on the blog I’m sharing another guide for “6 Hours In…” Passau, Germany.
Passau, Germany is a unique little town. It lies near the Austrian boarder, along the convergence of three rivers; the Danube, the Ilz, and the Inn. The old city is full of beautiful baroque buildings covered in various pastel colors. While it may seem like a sleepy little town, it’s full of many great sites. River cruisers often frequent Passau, making it lively and busy during tourist season.
Distance from Munich
- 2 hour drive
- 2 hour and 30 minute train
Everything in the old city is close together, making it easy to see a lot in a short amount of time. For these “mini-guides”, I recommend having six hours to see everything listed. Of course, it’s up to you how long you spend at each spot. While most of these spots can be seen rather quickly, I recommend planning at least 2 hours for the first spot on this list, the Veste Oberhaus. I’ve also listed the sites in the order in which I recommend you visit them, based on the city layout.
Although the Veste Oberhaus was once a fortress, built in 1219, it’s now home to a museum, restaurant, and even a hostel. It’s located on the top of a hill, rising high above Passau. Veste Oberhaus has a storied history; while it was attacked many times, it also held prisoners and was even under brief rule by Napoleon. In the summer months there is a bus, which runs every 40 minutes, to whisk you up the hill. Typically the bus does not run during the winter months, aside from a short time during the Christmas season, so plan accordingly.
Église Saint Paul de Passau
This pretty-in-pink church is done in the Baroque style, as is much of the architecture in Passau. It’s at the beginning of the old city, offering a charming welcome. Hello, perfect instagram backdrop!
Bischöfliche Residenz and the Wittelsbacherbrunnen
This is a lovely little spot in the old city. The ornate architecture and cobble-stoned streets add to the charm. A small market is set up in the square offering fresh meats, cheese, and vegetables.
St. Stephan’s Cathedral
Built in 1688, this Baroque Cathedral is a masterpiece. It houses the world’s largest pipe organ outside of the USA, but the largest cathedral organ in the world, with over 17,700 pipes! The inside it so detailed and beautiful! I wish we had more buildings like this in Arizona… wait, do we even have ANY like this?!
Where the Three Rivers Meet
The Inn, Ilz, and Danube all conjoin in Passau. One of the most interesting elements of it all, is the water color-difference between the three waterways. The Inn has a cloudy hue due to the silt content while the Ilz, also called the “Black Pearl” appears, you guessed it, almost black. Last but not least, the Danube, has a dark greenish teal color. There’s a nice walking path that wraps around the old city, leading from one side looking out towards the Veste Oberhaus to the other side along the Schaibling Tower (a 14th-century fortified tower).
Sello’s is a lively little bar on your way back towards the train station with views of Église Saint-Paul de Passau. Even in the winter months there are plenty of outdoor seats surrounded by heaters to keep you warm & cozy. Grab a glass of Prosecco and a bite to eat before heading back to the train station.
It’s easy to see why Bavaria is such a great region to visit in Germany. There are so many little towns, full of charm, and close to Munich. Next week’s post will be my last of the “6 Hours In…” series. It’s been fun, but it’s time to move on! I’m excited to share more about my time in Munich and England on the blog! I think I’m going to have a little reverse culture shock when I get back to the states… why can’t I be English and live in London?!
What country would you move to, if you could?!