"Three rivers junction" Top 5 Page for this destination Passau by Sjalen

Passau Travel Guide: 179 reviews and 451 photos

I had wanted to return to Passau ever since I whizzed past it on a school trip to Budapest in the 80s. The opportunity finally came when holidaying in Bavaria in November, when it was too misty to visit the mountains. As two hours on a train is nothing to a Swede, we set off on a daytrip here.

Had we stayed longer, maybe I would have felt it was more interesting, but I was actually a bit disappointed. Maybe also because ot the memory from the 80s when I past it in sunshine and went on to follow the Danube into Austria. This time it was a murky November day and the photos on this page therefore don't do Passau justice at all, as it is a very pretty town. Yes, there is lots of prettiness, and my problem with it was maybe just that it felt a bit too adjusted. Things felt like they were arranged in a certain way, not by the citizens but by tourism. Even in November, the streets were full of American coach parties and I can only imagine what summer must be like. Of the many students I had heard of, I saw very little. There are also a huge amount of pretty churches to look at, but for me, one is enough, then I want to see something else and go people watching.

Having said all this, I really enjoyed my day, but should have combined it with Austria instead as the whole town has a more Austrian rural feel than the cosmopolitan Munich we had just left. The only thing I regret is that I didn't have more time to visit the museums which looked like they deserved a visit. The six-year-old wasn't into exhibitions on border relations etc...

My main reason for coming was however the setting by the water and here, I was only let down by the weather. The rivers themselves are marvellous - here you find the confluence of no less than three of them. My beloved Danube which I follow here and there, the Inn and the little Ilz (look to the right in this picture). After Passau, the now single river is of course called the Danube, although why is not clear, as the Inn brings more water to Passau and is also the longest of the two that far. In summer, you can see a very interesting difference in colour of the rivers where they meet, the Inn bringing brown mud into the Danube.

Another interesting thing which is at times also frustrating, is that Passau like many other cities suffered badly in a fire (17th century). This means that the medieval street pattern can be seen, but with later style of housing built as the town was restored. Sometimes I wished I could have seen the narrow lanes and alleys full of cosy cottages instead of all the splendour which gave the town a bit too much elegance for me. But it gives an interesting effect of new(ish) meets old.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:pretty, rivers everywhere
  • Cons:felt touristy and a bit too elegant, quiet
  • In a nutshell:Enjoy the rivers!
  • Last visit to Passau: Nov 2004
  • Intro Updated Nov 13, 2004
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Reviews (12)

Comments (6)

  • nicolaitan's Profile Photo
    Mar 14, 2007 at 1:10 PM

    Passau, Rothenberg, all these towns look beautiful (and badly commercial apparently as well). Your images are beautiful. Which of these hill towns do you prefer?

  • iandsmith's Profile Photo
    Jan 15, 2007 at 3:06 PM

    Like the personal touch in the commentary, makes it so much more interesting.

  • globetrott's Profile Photo
    Jan 30, 2005 at 3:38 PM

    an interesting page & great pics ! Passau would certainly deserve more attention by the tourists and on VT !!

  • Roeffie's Profile Photo
    Jan 24, 2005 at 3:20 AM

    I had the same idea as you. Always driven by but never visited! Last year I did and I loved it!

  • JetlagCity's Profile Photo
    Nov 30, 2004 at 11:09 AM

    What a lovely setting at the three rivers! Great tip on the organ concerts at the Dom.

  • Henkster's Profile Photo
    Nov 14, 2004 at 9:10 AM

    Passau is an amazing place, but like with most places, in the summer they look a million times prettier than in grey November...

Sjalen

“Use your brain - go by train”

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