BootsnAll Travel Network

Regensburg, Germany


May 12, 2009 – Regensgurg is one of the oldest towns in Germany and was once the capital of Bavaria. I really enjoyed it here. First of all, the Cathedral is stupendous. The French inspired gothic architecture, with it’s spires and creepy gargoyles and other weird monster characters is kind of spooky, especially in gloomy weather. The Cathedral towers over everything, casting a shadow over the old town.


Regensburg; brief history and interesting facts;

  • Romans built first fort here around 90 AD. In 179 AD they built the Roman fort Castra Regina (defensive base against Germanic tribes) during reign of Emperor Marcus Aurelius in what is today’s old city. Some of the ruins are still standing.
  • Between 1135-1146 the Steinerne Brücke (stone bridge), was built. This stone bridge opened major international trade routes between Northern Europe and Venice and started Regensburg’s golden age. Regensburg became the cultural center of Southern Germany. The Knights of the 2nd and 3rd crusades crossed the bridge on the way to the Holy Land.
  • Construction of the Dom (Cathedral) started 1275 and was completed in 1634 (except the spires which were finished in 1869). Best example of Gothic architecture in southern Germany.
  • Many of Regensburg’s churches were built between 12th-14th century (ie. Much older than Munich).
  • Regensburg had very little damage from bombing in WWII
  • Regensburg had large Jewish population. Oskar Schindler (April 28, 1908 – October 9, 1974) was credited was saving over 1200 Jewish lives during the war by hiding them in his factories. Basis for the film Shindler’s List.


    Regensburg is also famous for it’s stone bridge. It is not as awe-inspiring as the Cathedral but it’s impressive for; 1) it’s history (I couldn’t believe I was on the same bridge that the Crusaders crossed on their way to the holyland!) and 2) the views over the old town and all it’s colourful buildings. If you like taking photos then this view, either from the bridge or from the island in the middle of the Danube) is the best in Regensburg.


    The town also has many more attractions. There are tons of cobble-stoned streets, each with unique old buildings, parks, squares, cafes, and beerhalls. The old city is surrounded by a park which circles to the river and crosses over to the above-mentioned island which has bicycle paths and a beergarden that is the best place to be on a summer day (I believe it was called the Alte Linde). More great views from this spot.


    Regensburg was the ideal spot to meet my mom for a few days. We walked a ton and drank lots of beer at the beer halls. Our favorite was the Augustiner – best food and drink and the beergirls were young and pretty with the kind of cleavage I like. Yeah. We used my Lonely Planet guide to Germany for recommendations and I have to say they were spot on.

    I’m really thankful that my mom was with me. First of all, she speaks German, so it made everything a lot easier, especially that there appears to be little English (on the surface) in Regensburg. All writing is in German, including on menus. So she translated, plus gave me a few pointers which I hope will help me on the rest of the trip. One thing I noticed: I would ask people “Sprechen sie English?”. They would usually respond with “just a little”. But then they would usually answer my questions with near perfect English. I don’t think anyone would have trouble speaking just English here.

    People are nice, but reserved. A little brash at times but not in a mean way. Except for the time we had a table stolen by a couple of over-zealous drunks who insisted they had gotten there first (maybe drunks is a strong word, all I mean is that many Germans seems to spend half their time stumbling around red-faced while staring into the distance…). I’ve joked before that Europeans sometimes treat guests like imposing family members. It’s not that they’re mean, it’s just that they seem distracted as if you are interrupting dreams about the next beer or a bratwurst with your boring shit about how the Wifi doesn’t seem to work or about how you could use a fan in your room.


    Suprises – I didn’t think Regensburg would be a highlight but it was. I also didn’t think prices would be so reasonable. My mom booked us a lavish 2 bedroom apartment for 250 Euros for 3 nights (Regensburg a bit less touristy, hence not so expensive). I was also suprised by the cost of necessities – she took me to the huge supermarket attached to the train station: bottles of wine ranged from 2 to 5 euros (some of the same wines I pay $14 cad for in Montreal), cheese is incredibly good and half the price you pay in Montreal, same with chocolate. You could save a lot of money just living off wine, beer, and bread served with cheese and cold cuts, with chocolate for dessert. It suprises me to say that food here is actually cheaper than it is back home. It’s also of really good quality, the cheeses and chocolate are fabulous.

    Thanks mom, travelling with you was great! Regensburg was a really good destination and I wouldn’t hesitate coming back again.


    Getting there from Munich airport:


    I flew Lefthansa Montreal-Munich, arriving 5:30 am (damn, I’m either getting fatter or those seats getting tighter. Not a comfortable flight).
    From the airport, take the 635 bus to the Bahnhof (train station) in Freising (takes about 15 min. Bus passes every 20 min).
    In Freising you can take train direct to Regensburg – takes one hour (train starts in Munich and passes Freising at about 10 minutes past the hour every hour).

    If you do it this way you’ll save yourself at least 1 1/2 hr than if you would go to Munich and take the train from there.

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