Regensburg, Weltenburg Abbey, and One Last Emerald Waterways Day
July 18, 2014
It’s our last full day aboard Emerald Waterways’ Emerald Startoday, as we approach the end of the Danube and our weeklong voyage that began in Budapest and has whisked us through the heart of four separate countries in just six short days. This evening, we’ll enter the Main-Danube Canal and begin our transit towards Nuremberg, where we will disembark tomorrow morning and another group of guests will take our place.
Fortunately, we still have one day left onboard, and it promises to be a busy one, with excursions to Regensburg, Kelheim and Weltenburg Abbey.
Regensburg has been called the most well-preserved medieval city in Germany. It’s also widely recognized for one of its most iconic features: the Stone Bridge constructed between 1135 and 1146, which today is covered in scaffolding as reconstruction takes place. Directly adjacent to the Stone Bridge is the Wurstkuche, a small restaurant that has been serving up superb Schweinsbratwurstl vom rost mit sauerkraut(bratwurst & sauerkraut) for the past 700 years. That, plus a pint of Bavarian beer, was my goal for this morning. With just shy of two hours on shore, I’d be able to do that and still tour around for a little while.
Unfortunately, once pierside in Regensburg we learned that our time in town would be reduced even further, to a little over 60 minutes, before we had to be back onboard due to lock schedules upstream. Compounding this was the fact that Emerald Star was docked in the second furthest berth from town, meaning a brisk 10-minute walk between the ship and the Wurstkuche in each direction. Math isn’t my strong suit, but I do know that leaves approximately 40 minutes to tour the town before the all-aboard call at 11:15.
You might ask why I am so passionate about visiting Regensburg for more than 40 minutes. Here’s why: unlike our short call on Durnstein, Regensburg offers a multitude of ways to spend your day. There’s the aforementioned Wurstkuche, the opulent Schloss Emmeram, also known as the Palace Thurn und Taxis, is located on the outskirts of the town. There are also numerous cafes and open-air markets, tons of cool shops, a residence formerly occupied by Oskar Schindler, and – most imposingly – the Gothic Dom, or Cathedral, that anchors Regensburg and has dual spires that are visible for kilometres in either