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Lace Up Your Boots for Fantastic Hiking in Passau, Germany

View of riverside city Passau in Germany
Passau Germany city view

Many of us who hike are admittedly in it for the views. While it’s nice to enjoy the rhythm of the trek, one foot in front of the other, it’s really those sought-after vistas we’re most drawn to. If you're an avid hiker and are planning a Danube River cruise to Passau, Germany, also known as the "City of Three Rivers," you're in for a treat. Passau offers an ideal hiking experience that combines historical significance with breathtaking vistas, making it a must-visit destination for nature enthusiasts. Here's a closer look at hiking in Passau, Germany, with a focus on "Castle Hill" and Veste Oberhaus.

Passau’s “Castle Hill”

The Danube, the Inn River, and the Ilz River meet in Passau, a historic town that can trace its roots past the 2nd century BC. Known for its Gothic and Renaissance architecture, its winding lanes, adorable Bavarian shops (with cuckoo-clocks, of course), and riverside promenades, the town is also home to the famous St. Stephen’s Cathedral, where for many years, the world’s largest cathedral organ was housed.

Hikers can set their sights on the Veste Oberhaus, atop Passau’s “Castle Hill,” from which you’ll have sublime views of the Old Town and the rivers. It’s the first thing you see when you sail into port. At nearly 350 feet above sea level on St. Georgsberg Mountain, the Veste Oberhaus was built in 1219 to represent the town’s strength. Although it was subsequently attacked five times between 1250 and 1482, and renovated numerous times, the Veste Oberhaus continued to stand as an excellent example of ancient fortification techniques, attracting leaders and students over the years to study its structure.

Napoleon Bonaparte used the Veste Oberhaus as a home base during his campaign to take Austria. After that, it was a state and military prison for almost 100 years.

Hiking to Veste Oberhaus

Hike up or down the steep terrain with a guide to get the most from your experience. As you follow the footpath, notice the remnants of the fortress wall line, as well as various gateways and guard houses.

Veste Oberhause Footpaths

Battlement Walk: This walk takes approximately 15 minutes. Access the trail at the north side of the Danube suspension bridge and follow the signs. The path ends within the Outer Bailey.

Ludwigsteig: This walk takes approximately 20 minutes. Access the trail at the north side of the Danube suspension bridge and follow the signs. The path ends at the viewing platform next to the parking lot.

More Hikes Around Passau

Passau offers a range of hiking options, from leisurely riverside strolls to challenging climbs. Explore these additional hiking opportunities to immerse yourself further in the natural beauty and history of Passau. Check them out here.

For an unforgettable hiking experience in Passau, Germany, combined with a Danube River cruise, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us. We'd be delighted to help you plan your adventure and ensure you make the most of your visit to this captivating destination.


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