PASSAU – The city on Three Rivers
Passau does count to the most impressive German cities with its very unique town- and landscape. Due to a freak of nature Passau enjoys an extraordinary townscape. Three rivers from three different directions – the Ilz from the North, the Danube from the West and the Inn from the South – join in one spot, the so- called “Three-Rivers-Corner”. They continue united as Danube in the fourth – the Eastern direction. Thus, Passau is called the “THREE-RIVERS-CITY”. Passau’s townscape is characterized by its Italian baroque style which gives it a special atmosphere.
For more than 200 years Passau has been turned into a Bavarian city which borders directly on Austria. The name of Passau is derived from the former roman fortification “Batavis”. In the 8th century Passau became an Episcopal seat and from the 13th century on for more than 600 years an independent prince bishopric. Today more than 50.000 inhabitants live in Passau. For 4 decades Passau has been developed to an important administration, business and culture centre in Eastern Bavaria and since 1993 it has become a regional centre based on the fact that the University of Passau was founded in 1978.
The setting of the Old Town shows picturesque places, soaring towers, romantic lanes and enchanting promenades. The fortress “Veste Oberhaus” in the North and the Pilgrimage Church “Mariahilf” in the South are enthroned high above Passau’s Old Town. From there visitors can enjoy a magnificent view on the three rivers Danube, Inn and Ilz. To discover Passau you can either go by bike along the rivers or enjoy a boat trip on the Danube.
Due to the confluence of three rivers, Passau is a paradise for hikers and bicyclists. The city offers a wide range of bicycle paths such as the Danube Cycle Path from Passau to Vienna, Inn- Salzach Cycle Path or Passau-Source of Inn (CH). All of them present an unforgettable nature and cultural experience.
THE FORTRESS “Oberhaus”
In 1219 Passau’s Prince-Bishops began to build a fortress high above Danube and Ilz. The present building consists of gothic, renaissance and baroque parts. Until 1803 the Prince Bishops demonstrated their temporal power with this Fortress. Nowadays the Museum of Culture and History is located in the Fortress, showing historic exhibits in over 50 rooms. There is also a beautiful view over Passau and its surroundings.
THREE RIVER CONJUCTION POINT
In the historic centre of Passau there are nooks and crannies, squares and churches, towers and bourgeois houses, and the nice walks along the river shores. Where Danube, Inn and Ilz meet to join and continue as one, there is lovely country side around.
The main hall was built in the 15th century. After the town fire in 1662 it was rebuilt in baroque style by the famous cathedral builders Lurago and Carlone. The paintings inside were made around 1890. Outside on the northern wall there is a remarkable huge fresco, on the Town Hall Tower there are flood marks.
NEW EPISCOPAL RESIDENCE
In the former Prince Bishops’ Residence there is an exposition of the treasures of the diocese’s memorable past. The rococo stairways lead you up to the Museum of the Treasury of the Cathedral and the Diocese und to the Ceremonial Rooms of the Prince Bishops.
ST. STEPHEN’S CATHEDRAL
After the devastating town fire of 1662 the Gothic cathedral was almost completely destroyed. Only the choir, dome and transept survived the fire. Thereafter it was rebuilt in Italian - baroque style. It houses the world’s biggest cathedral organ, consisting of five individual organs with 17,974 organ pipes and 233 stops.
PILGRIMAGE CHURCH “MARIA HILF”
High above Passau’s quarter “Innstadt” there is the baroque pilgrimage-church which used to be an important pilgrimage to the Virgin Mary. Uphill to the church there is an enclosed construction of pilgrimage stairs with 321 steps. From there you have a nice view on the so-called “Italian” side of Passau.
Passau is the ideal starting point for a trip to the Eastern Bavarian spa towns and many other charming vacation spots. Western City Pullman, Bavarian Forest Open-air museum, Baumkronenweg Kopfing and the Bavarian Forest National Park attract a lot of visitors every year. The landscape around Passau is shaped by castles, churches & monasteries, lakes, mountains and forests.
Would you like to experience a lot, and at the same time safe money?
The Passau Card all-inclusive ensures you an unforgettable holiday stay, while saving money at the same time. Explore the romantic town of Passau, the region Passauer Land, Upper Austria and Southern Bohemia! You will love it.
All advantages at a glance!
Get your free access:
- Museum Fortress Oberhaus
- Leisure parks
- Abbey Asbach
- Museums and exhibitions
- A three river boat trip or a romantic boat trip on the Inn
- A guided tour through the Aldersbach’s brewery incl. free beer
- Public traffic by bus and train
- Event calendar
- Rottal Thermal Bath Bad Birnbach
- Thermal Bath in Bad Griesbach or Europe’s largest golf ressort
- Thermal baths in Bad Füssing
- Hiking, Mountain bike, Riding, Tennis, Canoeing, Badminton, Nordic Walking, and Hot-Air Balloon
- Climbing Wall in Waldkirchen
- High Rope Course in Bad Griesbach
…and still many other sport activities in the region.