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Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Christmas cruise on the Danube River - Dec 22nd/2014....

The ship was not scheduled to arrive in Regensburg until 2 pm.  Again, I had the light lunch in the lounge - German wedding soup which is a beef broth with noodles and pancake strips; German dumplings with cheese and crispy onions; German cold meats and potato salad; beets with red colored mayo-type dressing, pretzels and cheeses.  For dessert, there was black forest cake.

Regensburg is a city at the confluence of the Danube and Regen Rivers.  The medieval center of the city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  We had an interesting walking tour of the old center, and afterwards we walked on our own to the Christmas market at the Thurn and Taxis Palace.

There is a famous stone bridge (built 1135-1146) over the Danube River; it is currently under repair.  The bridge opened major international trade routes between northern Europe and Venice. 

The famous historical sausage kitchen dates back to before 1616 -  it was too cold to get something, but on a prior trip, I ordered a sausage on a bun with a beer.   The most obvious and impressive sights in the city’s old center are the towers - wealthy patrician families competed against each other to build the highest tower in the city. The last sight on the walking tour was St. Peter’s Cathedral.
After the walking tour, they gave us prepaid tickets to enter the Christmas market at the Schloss Thurn and Taxis.  The Christmas market is large, and parts of the market are also within the two large courtyards of the palace.  It seems a very popular Christmas market, but it is the only one which I know about that requires attendees to pay to enter.  

For supper, we had a “Chef’s Table Menu”.  Actually. this was a farewell dinner for those passengers leaving tomorrow.  The parmesan martini did not do it for me - I not sure how to describe the taste.  I had the goose liver-sesame brule for an appetizer and the spicy lobster soup.  For the main dish, I had the wild salmon and white wine.  It was a gourmet type meal which, like all the others, was excellent.

There was a pre-dinner quartet of a former boys’ choir which sang Christmas carols.  After dinner, the crew sang more Christmas carols.

Photos belong to Phil Bianco

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