Regions & Maps
The Route of Emperors and Kings extends along the Danube from mediaeval Regensburg, through Passau, Linz, Vienna and Bratislava, to the metropolis of Budapest, linking urban cultural centres, historic treasures and world-class landscapes. This is where the history of Central Europe was written, and this history remains very much a part of life today. From Roman times onwards, kings and queens travelled on and along the Danube with their royal entourages. Over the centuries, this age-old route therefore came to be known as the ‘Route of Emperors and Kings’ – and it has lost none of its appeal to this day.
Highlights of the region
Staying at the vintner’s, sitting in the guest garden near the Danube, taking a tour with the winegrower through his vineyards or simply stopping at the Heuriger, drinking a glass of Wachau DAC and eting a few sandwiches with spreads: The Wachau is simply a picturesque and enjoyable feel-good region – especially in the warm months.
When the Bavarian princess Elisabeth from the Wittelsbach family boarded the Danube ship “Stadt Regensburg” in Straubing on 21 August 1854, it was not to start a pleasure cruise. No, the 16-year-old was on a bridal trip, or rather, she was on her way to the “wedding of the century” in Vienna.
The “Passauer Tölpel”, a landmark that can also be enjoyed as a delicious gingerbread cake, tells his story: “I fell from Passau Cathedral and broke my beautiful body. I’m still alive and kicking, just a little weak in the head.” The stone head from Passau must have once fallen from a cathedral, so it’s no wonder he’s still a bit confused and considered a dolt.
On June 1st, the new exhibition at Schallaburg Castle in Lower Austria opened its doors: “DANUBE – People, Treasures & Cultures” is its theme and its itinerary is a little unusual for us visitors.
2850 kilometres of pure natural landscape along the Danube, 2850 times to breathe deeply and experience vastness: That is the Danube Cycle Path, an active nature and cultural experience. The Danube Cycle Path is also called the “mother of river cycle paths” and is one of the most popular cycle paths in Europe.
The grapes love the gentle influence of the Danube. That is why the Danube regions from Regensburg to Budapest are also rich in wine-growing areas. Even the Romans knew how to appreciate wine. Vinum laetificat cor hominis! – Wine gladdens a humans heart!
The Upper German-Raetian Limes is one of the most impressive and largest archaeological monuments in Europe with a length of 550 km, 900 guard posts and 120 larger and smaller fort sites.
‘The Danube – Route of Emperors and Kings’ is an international working group which includes ten tourism organisations and river cruise lines. These members work to promote their common European heritage and let visitors today travel in the footsteps of Marcus Aurelius, Frederick I, the Habsburgs and many others.