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Boat Ride down the Danube River - Wachau Valley

Something I have noticed in Europe is how many people ride scooters – in train stations, footpaths, airports, pretty much everywhere and take them on & off trains.

Left at 7am for the station for our day trip to the Wachau Valley and Danuvbe River. We had purchased a combo ticket for 53 E to catch the train to Melk ( changing trains at St Polten), visit the Melk Abbey, catch a ship up the Danube to Krems and train back to Vienna.

It was a lovely day and we arrived into Melk at 8.30am. The streets were nice and quiet before all the other tourists arrived and we wandered up the lovely old town street past a 16th century baker with 2 turrets and wood shingle roof until we found a sign saying Sistak Melk (Abbey ). We could see the abbey high above the town with the town homes nestled under its walls.

Not too many steps later we arrived up to the entrance and it was impressive and huge!! We wandered around the areas that were open reading the history but the most impressive rooms were the library with over 100,000 old beautifully bound books some from the 15th century and the very ornate church. From the terrace was a great view over the Danube River and village. Established as a fortified Benedictine abbey in the 11th century, it was destroyed by fire. What visitors see today is 18th-century Baroque.Todays abbey was completed in 1729 and the inscription in latin on the front says:

GLORY IS ONLY TO BE FOUND IN THE CROSS - pretty cool

Back in the village I had to have another warm Austrian apple strudel with vanilla sauce and ice-cream – 4.90 E and sooooooo good!! I don't even like apple strudel at home!

We wandered through the village following signs to the Schiff station to board the 11am boat to Krems. It is a beautiful sunny day in the mid 20’s and perfect blue sky but that sun can get hot. We wanted to sit on the back deck so used our umbrellas to keep out of the sun until the boat started up and then the breeze kept us cool.

The Danube flows down to the Adriatic sea incredible fast at 6 knots and we were going with the flow heading in the direction of Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest where we had seen the Danube previously.

The next 2 hours were just lovely sitting in the sun as we went through the valley with gorgeous little villages along the riverfront either side, big forested hills, several castles in various states of ruin perched precariously high on rocky outcrops overlooking the river, lovely churches, some with cap like spires, others with the onion top and then a beautiful blue church on the river in Durnstein In this cute little village high in the hill is the ruined castle where Richard the lion heart from England was locked up for some time. Richard the Lionhearted was imprisoned here in 1193. The ruined castle above town, where Richard was kept, can be reached by a fairly steep 30-minute hike with great river views- would have loved tp do that!.Vineyards covered the steep hillsides above the villages.

At Krems we wandered around following the signs to Zentrum ( centre) and Bahnhoff ( station) and went through several lovely parks and along pathways for about 30 minutes until we reached the old town and the station.

We caught the 2.50pm train back to Vienna but arrived back into a different station from the one we left from and caught another line back to West Bahnhoff and were back by 4pm. Bought some corn cobs from the supermarket to cook for dinner to eat with our remaining smoked salmon and ham

Walking from the station and there is the Abbey

Walking from the station and there is the Abbey


Looms over the village of Melk

Looms over the village of Melk


Abbey Entrance

Abbey Entrance


Map of how big the abbey and grounds are

Map of how big the abbey and grounds are


First courtyard

First courtyard


Long hallways

Long hallways


Village of Melk

Village of Melk


Looking to where our boat leaves

Looking to where our boat leaves


Viewing Terrace

Viewing Terrace


Melk Rathaus

Melk Rathaus


Old Bakery Shop

Old Bakery Shop


Old Bakery Shop 16th century

Old Bakery Shop 16th century


Old Post Office

Old Post Office


Danube River views

Danube River views


Village

Village


Danube Views

Danube Views


Valleys and villages

Valleys and villages


Passed many cabin boats

Passed many cabin boats


Castle high on the hill

Castle high on the hill


Castle

Castle


River

River


Barges

Barges


Danube River boats

Danube River boats


Another castle

Another castle


Village of Spitz

Village of Spitz


Village of Spitz half way  to Krems

Village of Spitz half way to Krems


vineyards

vineyards


Village church

Village church


Village

Village


vineyards

vineyards


Village homes

Village homes


Village

Village


Durnstein castle ruins

Durnstein castle ruins


Durnstein church  looked like wedgwood china

Durnstein church looked like wedgwood china


Durnstein village and church

Durnstein village and church


Durnstein church

Durnstein church


Back deck of boat

Back deck of boat


Durnstein

Durnstein


River relaxing

River relaxing


Krems village

Krems village


Park rotunda in Krems

Park rotunda in Krems


Richard the Lionheart

Richard the Lionheart


Krems

Krems


Krems

Krems


River  ride

River ride


Our Boat

Our Boat


First  castle we passed

First castle we passed


Mum relaxing on board

Mum relaxing on board

Posted by hillbillyramsey 17:00 Archived in Austria

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