Regions & Maps

Royal journeys from Regensburg to Budapest, via Linz and Vienna

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

The spiritual traces of Maria Theresa and her daughters

The House of Habsburg and Catholicism have always been inextricably intertwined. This connection manifests itself not least in Vienna’s famous Capuchin Crypt, where several members of the former ruling dynasty face eternity in magnificent sarcophagi. In this article, we will take you on a journey down far lesser-known paths of Habsburg religious mania, and show you the places where Maria Theresa and her daughters left their spiritual traces.

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Nature and People: Return to the wilderness trail on the lower Danube

Nature and man – united in a story that leads us to the “last Danube” – the natural and the last section before the mouth to the “lower” Danube. Nature still strongly shaped the Danube in earlier times – and should interest us more today in terms of tourism.

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Upstream - Downstream: Trade on the Danube

Today, it is often enough to press a button to get products from all over the world to your doorstep. In the past, however, it was different, the Danube was a trans-shipment center for all kinds of goods – come with us on a journey through time and discover how the salt came into the cooking pots of the people.

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In the footsteps of Maria Theresa and her daughters

The great Maria Theresa is one of the few Habsburgs who, along with Empress Elisabeth, is known beyond the German-speaking borders. She stands for political assertiveness, baroque joie de vivre and palace culture, but also for her immense wealth of children and the associated strokes of fate as well as odd life paths of the individual sons and daughters.

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To understand Europe, travel the Danube

As part of the INTERREG EU project “Transdanube Travel Stories”, a new thematic itinerary entitled “Europe on the Danube” has been created. It is one of six interconnected new narratives, with each route travelling a specific section of the Danube. “Europe on the Danube” focuses on the middle course of the river, with sites steeped in history, surprising connections and exciting attractions in eastern Austria, Slovakia, Hungary and northern Croatia, as well as glimpses of the European Capitals of Culture Novi Sad in Serbia and Timişoara in Romania.

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Charming Christmas Markets at castles and monasteries in the Danube Region

In Vienna, they were once called “Krippenmarkt”, “Budenmarkt” or “Thomasmarkt” on the Graben around 1600. There were mainly sweet baked goods for sale, but of course there was still no talk of terms like “Christmas market” or even “Christkindlmarkt”. It was probably not until the middle of the 18th century that a “St. Nicholas, Christmas and Nativity Market” was set up on the Freyung for the first time – but this one had over 100 stalls.

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When the Danube was the border: World Heritage Danube Limes

On July 30, 2021 the time had come: The Roman Limes along the Danube in Bavaria, Austria and Slovakia received the long-awaited and longed-for seal of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  At UNESCO this is officially called: “Transnational site Danube Limes inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List”. The Limes as a former border of the Roman Empire stretched from northern England across Europe and the Middle East to North Africa.

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From children's weddings and power politics to p(r)unk and glory: Marriage with calculation

In spring 500 years ago – in 1521 – the Imperial Diet of Worms took place: Emperor Charles V had convened it, a gigantic “event” one would say today, during which the city was actually in high spirits. Both the approximately 10,000 guests and the locals partied day and night during the event, ignoring the fasting period and most of the otherwise well-liked “good customs”.

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Further regionen

‘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.

 

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