Le Chic En Rose

Diaries of an independent traveller

Following on from our enjoyable lunch at the historic Wurstkuchl in Regensburg, we set off explore more of the Altstadt (Old Town). Regensburg is a marvellous place to visit as the city escaped relatively unscathed from the ravages of the World War 2 bombing and thus most of the Altstadt has been preserved in its original state. It now enjoys UNESCO World Heritage listed status and is a major tourist attraction in this part of Bavaria (the Upper Palatinate).

Regensburg was known as Ratisbon in English until well into the 2oth century (Ratisbonne in French and Ratisbona in Spanish and Italian). Its strategic position at the confluence of 3 rivers, the Danube, Naab and Regen, led to the city becoming an important medieval trading route with powerful influences north of the Alps and trading connections spreading out to Italy, Bohemia and further afield to Russia and the Byzantium. It was also an important city within the Holy Roman Empire  and the location of many imperial assemblies in the High Middle Ages. The Perpetual Assembly of the Holy Roman Empire was held here between 1663 to 1806. All these influences have created a rich and colourful history, which today is reflected in the impressive buildings and character of the Altstadt. The UNESCO World Heritage website has further information on Regensburg’s history here.

There are many tours on offer and you can find details of some of these on the city of Regensburg’s web page here. However, although we have often done walking tours of new places, on this occasion Monsieur Le Chic and I preferred to wander round at our leisure taking in as much in as we could. Sometimes I find it can get a bit too much to take in all the historical information on an organised tour (or maybe I have a short attention span?!). I often find myself reading up in more detail about a place after I’ve been there – initially I like to get a feel for it myself! The history of Regensburg is complex and the old buildings date back from various eras. Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque styles all mingle together in the Old Town.

We had as our starting point a map helpfully situated on the opposite side of the road from our arrival point, the Hauptbahnhof.

 

Map of the Altstadt Regensburg

Map of the Altstadt Regensburg

 

The Altsadt is a bit like a maze, pretty meandering cobbled streets opening out at various points into larger squares. If in doubt following the church spires usually gets you to a central point! The central Domplatz is dominated by the imposing spire of St Peter’s Dom. The current cathedral was built in the 1300s on the site of previous buildings and is a magnificent example of Gothic architecture.

 

 

 

We went inside and wandered round but the light was not conducive to taking good photos so there are not as many as I would like. However the crypt is particularly interesting. It has quite a lot of detail about the history of the cathedral including a memorial stone wall plaque inscribed with the names of all the bishops of Regensburg. There is also a poignant memorial to Dr Johann Maier, a preacher at the cathedral and a victim of the Nazis who is buried here.

 

Not far away from Domplatz you reach the Danube. One of the major attractions here, right by our lunch venue the Wurstkuchl, is the Old Stone Bridge (Steinerne Bruecke). The bridge, which replaced an old wooden one was constructed in the 12th century to link the Old Town with Stadtamhof. For about 800 years it was the only bridge across the Danube and not unsurprisingly it started to erode. Centuries of heavy traffic including armies going off to fight in the crusades had taken its toll and for the time being you can only admire the Old Stone Bridge encased in scaffolding as it is undergoing major restoration work.

 

It was somewhat chilly by the river so we headed back up towards the Old Town Hall (the Altes Rathaus).

 

One of the many little streets and passageways in the Altstadt of Regensburg

One of the many little streets and passageways in the Altstadt of Regensburg

 

We did take a couple of wrong turns – the myriad of streets can get a little confusing but one way or another you usually end up back at a landmark and get your bearings again. Hopefully by next week I’ll have found my way to the Altes Rathaus! Join me then for Part 2 of exploring the Altstadt Regensburg!

 

Copyright © 2015 Rosemary Thomas Le Chic En Rose. All rights reserved

 

 

29 thoughts on “Altstadt Regensburg Part 1

  1. Looks like a very nice town; typical of the German Baroque style. The Cathedral does look wonderful and I am a big fan of the Gothic architecture so this would have been a treat. Thanks for the visit. (Suzanne)

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    1. You’re welcome Suzanne! I think you would have loved the cathedral and there are a number of other churches and historical buildings that you would have found interesting. Regensburg is beautifully preserved and everything is quite close together so it’s a lovely place to wander around 🙂

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  2. All the old European cities look like a maze, that’s what i like about them. You can get lost on purpose and enjoy what the little narrow and sinuous streets 🙂

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    1. That’s what I find so lovely about them too Gin – I really feel at home wandering round all the lovely old streets one thing I definitely miss living here in Perth!! Regensburg is a very worthwhile place to visit 🙂 Hope you can find some time to relax this weekend amidst all the packing! 🙂

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      1. When we went to the US, I was really shocked to see all these parallel and straight lines in the big city 😀 Difficult to get lost :D:D

        I’m going to dive this morning, testing a new dry suit, I hope it won’t leak :p:p

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        1. Modern cities are so different! There are still some old streets (meaning 19th century in Perth) but it’s a modern place certainly not like Europe. I hope the dive went well! 🙂

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          1. oh …. I couldn’t zip my diving suit, it appears that I have put on weight. I was quite depressed yesterday, but today, I’m laughing at the situation. I’ll have to take care of this problem !! Going to the gym I am !!!

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            1. Oh no sorry to hear that – the dive suits do look rather tight though perhaps the zip was faulty?!

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            2. haha, thanks for trying to comfort me, but it’s my personal dive suit, and I know it’s working well. It’s just me putting on weight 😉 It has been so slow that I barely noticed it but it’s there !!

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            3. Am sure it’s just temporary Gin after the winter one always eats more then!

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  3. It looks beautiful Rosemary – I’ve yet to find an Altstadt that I didn’t like, this one looks really stunning though. I know what you mean about guided tours, sometimes it’s nice to browse at your leisure, especially when you’ve already done the research and tons of reading. Looking forward to part 2. Hope your weekend is a good one!

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    1. Thanks Joy I’m the same with Altstadts – I always love wandering around them. Regensburg’s is extensive – it just seemed to go on and on forever (hence the need for Part 1 and 2 posts). It was lovely to know that it is all mainly original too and the buildings protected so that restoration is a priority. We do take walking tours sometimes – we did a few in Berlin and one in Budapest but they are much larger cities and it was a good way to get our bearings. Here in Regensburg we just wanted a leisurely browse and we had a very enjoyable day out – I can recommend it as a place to visit! Hope you have a good weekend too! 🙂

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      1. It’s definitely on the (ever-growing and out of control) list Rosemary!

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  4. Lucy says:

    I find this so funny. We go to so many countries, and everywhere we meet the Danube haha 🙂 The Dom is a very impressive building. Amazing architecture! Thanks for sharing! Have a lovely weekend!

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    1. Yes I was surprised to see the Danube here too Lucy – it’s such a long river and I always associated it more with Austria and the Rhine with Germany. In fact the Danube was quite wide and fast flowing at Regensburg! The Dom was impressive and it’s good inside too but the light wasn’t great for taking photos. Hope you had a good weekend too and have a good week ahead as well 🙂

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  5. Thank goodness the Old Town of Regensburg was relatively untouchted by the war. St Peter’s is stunning and the last photo of the little streets was so brilliantly captured I felt like I was walking down it. Bravo Rosemary!

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    1. Thanks Lisa! I wanted to create a feel of what it was like to meander round the old streets so am glad you like that last photo! The cathedral is stunning – superb architecture! It’s so fortunate that the Altstadt has been so well preserved in its original form as sadly many places weren’t. Hope your sailing adventures are going well! 🙂

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  6. colibrist says:

    I feel the same thing about organized tours! After so much traveling I don’t do tours and hardy ever visit museums (unless I am specially interested in one). Being honest with myself, I’ve realized that after the visit I don’t remember much… too much information! So I prefer to go around, meet people if I can, and read about it later. Happy travels!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I can imagine if you went on every organised tour Laia your head would be spinning as you’re travelling to so many places! Sometimes you want to enjoy the experience and read about it later – I do that a lot. I’m interested when I’m going round somewhere then I want to do further reading afterwards. Will catch up on your latest travel posts later today! Happy travels 🙂

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  7. restlessjo says:

    I don’t have a great attention span any more, Rosemay (if I ever did!) so I tend to do the same. I read up in advance when I can and fill in the details on bits I was interested in afterwards. It’s impossible to absorb everything and I like to just wander and poke my nose in too. 🙂

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    1. Yes that’s exactly what I do Jo – get an idea through reading up before a trip then I usually go away and follow up anything that’s really piqued my interest. I love anything to do with history but you can get information overload in museums etc so though I enjoy going round I don’t always take it all in. Hope you’re having a great week 😃

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      1. restlessjo says:

        The weather could be better (but that’s often the case 🙂 ) Off out walking soon.

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        1. Hope you enjoyed your walk Jo! It’s raining here but I’m hoping to get out for my walk soon 🙂

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  8. I love how all the cobbled streets of Altstadt are like a maze and to find your central point you head to the church spires! That’s my kind of exploring – that’s the fun of it, getting a little lost 🙂

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    1. Yes I’m glad there were spires though to point the way Ting – my sense of direction is not that good! It’s great fun to just wander around and explore these old towns 🙂

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  9. Looks like very nice town. One of my favorite Things is actually getting lost in cities like this, then you get to see so many Things you would not see if you just took the regular routes 🙂

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    1. There are so many interesting little places tucked away in side streets Hanne – Regensburg is a real gem it was such a pretty old city! 🙂

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