Abu Simbel is an archaeological site comprising two massive rock temples in southern Egypt on the western bank of Lake Nasser. The twin temples were originally carved out of the mountainside during the reign of Pharaoh Ramesses II in the 13th century BC, as a lasting monument to himself and his queen Nefertari, to commemorate his alleged victory at the Battle of Kadesh, and to intimidate his Nubian neighbors. However, the complex was relocated in its entirety in the 1960s, on an artificial hill made from a domed structure, high above the Aswan dam reservoir.
The site of Amada is noted for having the oldest surviving structure on the Lake Nasser. Also it has some of the finest carvings in any Nubian temple.
A center of European commerce since the 15th century, Amsterdam is a lively city of canals, museums and entertainment. Perhaps you'll choose to explore this Dutch capital by canal boat. Visit the Anne Frank House and the Rijksmseum, with its collections of Flemish masterpieces.
Immortalized in the World War II book and film, "A Bridge Too Far," Arnhem is known for its beautiful parks and gardens. Stroll the charming pedestrian mall within walking distance of the ship. The Krller-Mller museum in nearby De Hoge Veluwe National Park offers a magnificent art collection of 280 Van Gogh paintings and drawings, among other priceless works by late 19th and early 20th century artists.
The Old Town is dominated by its magnificent red sandstone Renaissance Palace built between 1605 and 1614 and once occupied by the Electors of Mainz. The palace contains the State Picture Gallery, the Elector´s State Aparments and a Museum.
Sheltered by medieval walls, Avignon's maze of narrow streets is filled with churches, museums and palaces tracing the history of this ancient, vibrant city. Visitors can capture a bird's eye view of the city and surrounding Rhône River valley from the top of Cathedral Hill. Avignon is known as the "City of Popes," due to the role the city played in the Avignon conspiracy during the 14th century, when a series of popes abandoned Rome and fled to Avignon. Still remaining from this time of this papal residence, the lavish Palais des Papes, a fortress, church and palace was considered the center of the Christian world during the 14th century. From 1309-1377, seven popes resided in this stunning building, one of the world's most unique and grandiose examples of gothic architecture.
From this resort city nestled in the heart of Saxon Switzerland, you can take an excrusion to Prague, "city of a hundred spires." Spend the day exploring Hradshin, the castle area, where you´ll find almost 200 castles! Later, you´ll see St Vitus Cathedral, the "Golden Lane," and the Old Market with its famous astronomical Apostle clock.
Described as probably Germany´s most beautiful city, Bamberg offers a treasure trove of Germany´s finest art and examples of Europe´s greatest architecture styles - Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque. Founded in 902, Bamberg remains a medieval-looking city known for its symphony orchestra and specialty "smoke" beer. Bamberg was also the first site in Germany of lithographic printing featuring movable type. The city's winding streets are filled with baroque patrician houses as well as the breathtaking 11th century cathedral of Holy Roman Emperor Heinrich II, which houses his tomb as well as that of Pope Clement II. Tour the 16th century Alt Residenz (Old Residence) and the 17th century Neue Residenz (New Residence), both of which were bishop's houses.
Barth (Polish: Bardo) is a town in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany. It is situated at a lagoon of the Baltic Sea. The origins of Barth are unknown. Some people claim, that the town was founded by survivors from the sunken town of Vineta. The first generally accepted record is of 1255, when the prince of Rugen acknowledged the town. The last prince of Rugen, Witzlaw III, erected a castle at the place in 1315. He often resided in Barth, until he died and the town became a part of Pomerania.
Gateway to the Swiss Rhineland, Basel is ideally situated on the Rhine at the crossroads of France, Germany, and Switzerland. As you walk the cobblestone streets of the Old City, retrace the steps of the brilliant scholar Erasmus of Rotterdam. Visit the Museum of Fine Arts, where you´ll see the paintings of Picasso, Dali, Kandinsky, and Mondrian, among others.
Beaune is the capital of the Burgundy wine country and one of the best-preserved medieval cities in the region. The towns main attraction is the 15th-century Hotel-Dieu, which originally served as a hospital. Located on the corner of place de la Halle, it houses a 15th-century polyptych entitled The Last Judgement, by Rogier van der Weyden. On the third Sunday in November, an annual wine auction is held in the hospital vineyards.
Beilngries is a popular trip goal: With the wheel, to foot, the ship or the boat one comes to us, and the gastliche atmosphere enjoys. And as meeting place in the nature park Altmuehltal made itself a name for Beilngries. Renowned enterprises estimate the peace and landschaftlich delightful environment as ideal domicile for their seminars and advanced training.
Belgrade (Beograd) is the capital of Serbia, having about 2 million inhabitants. It is located in the south-east of Europe, in the Balkan Peninsula, at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers. It is one of the oldest cities in Europe and since ancient times it has been an important traffic focal point, an intersection of the roads of Eastern and Western Europe.
The City of Belgrade is the founder, financer and organizer of many regular annual cultural events. Most of the authors from all fields of culture and art live and work in Belgrade, the center of culture and art of Serbia and Yugoslavia. Belgrade has also hosted the famous world authors and performers in the fields of music, theatre, film. The only Serbian Nobel laureate, Ivo Andri, has created some of his greatest literary works right here, in Belgrade.
Berching is a quiet and really romantic little town in Bavaria, situated between Regensburg and Nrnberg. It has a well preserved town wall of the Middle Age with a gallery and thirteen towers, often compared with the all over the world well known "ROTHENBURG.
Germany's bustling, vibrant capital, Berlin lies on the flatlands at the confluence of several rivers and lakes. This exciting metropolis echoes with its poignant history, reflected in its blend of modern and ancient architecture.
A well known wine growing centre situated on the Mosel River. In the centre is the Market surrounded by color-washed half-timbered houses and the remains of medieval walls including the Ender Gate built in 1332. The well-restored castle which looms above the town was severely damaged in 1689 during the "Orleans War" of 1688-97.
Bezdan is one of the biggest settlements in the northwest Backa, at the left banks of the Danube, the village has a Hungarian ethnic majority.
Bingen stands for variety: a modern town at the junction of the rivers Rhine and Nahe. Its history can be traced back to the Romans. Down the ages it has always been a centre of wine trade, and thus displays a unique metropolitan character blended with joie de vivre. Bingen is surrounded by a varied landscape, known for its natural beauty, its castles and other places of interest. Bingen is easily reachable by car, by rail (Inter-City Express / Inter-City / Interregio [regional] trains), by air (Rhein-Main and Rhein-Mosel airports), and by inland shipping.Remnants of the stone age show that the region was populated in the very early days. The strategic position at the junction of the rivers Rhine and Nahe made the town attractive to warriors, merchants and the mighty, who tried again and again to conquer the town. During the last thousand years, Bingen has been destroyed eight times in the course of wars and military conflicts, an the town has changed hands many times in history.
Bitetos is nestled in the Douro Valley. The most popular tourist attraction is the Monastery of Alpendorada.
Discover magnificent castle ruins in this charming district of Luneburg. Step back in time as you visit the picturesque historic old town of Altstadt.
Welcome to Boppard on the Rhine. In the Valley of the Loreley as well as on the heights of the nearby Hunsrck Hills, Boppard has a lot to offer in many respects both to residents and guests. In the course of history, all kinds of people have felt at home here, whether Celts, Romans or Franconians. All of them have left their mark on the 2000 year-old history of the town and at every turn there is witness in stone of their presence.
The capital of Slovakia, Bratislava is filled with baroque city palaces that have been lovingly restored and is dominated by an enormous castle that sits 300 feet above the Danube. After decades of communist rule, Bratislava is once again transforming itself into one of central Europe's most vibrant cities. See St. Martin's Cathedral in the historic Old Town, Michael's Gate and the neoclassic Archbishop's Palace as well as centuries-old squares filled with shops and cafes.
This charming little town is just above Koblenz on the river. Its medieval fortifications include St. Barbarakirche, built in the 14th century, and Martinskapelle, which dates from the ninth century. The castle Marksburg, built in 1200, sits above the town. It is the only Rhine castle that has not been damaged through the centuries.
This European town on the Rhine gave the Breisgau region its name. St. Stephan's cathedral on the high basalt cliffs and the Rhine gateway with museum hark back to the time when the noble Staufer family built the fortress to defend the town. The Badischer Winzerkeller is Europe's biggest producer-seller of wine. Also a centre for many important sekt producers.
From the futuristic Atomium to the serenity of the Bois de la Cambre, Belgiums capital is a city of striking contrasts, best discovered on foot. Begin with the Grand-Place, one of the most beautiful squares in the world with its extraordinary ensemble of Baroque facades. Afterwards, browse the shops of the "Sacred Isle" for Brussels world-famous lace and other treasures.
This enchanting and exotic capital of Hungary straddles the banks of the Danube and is divided into two distinct parts, traditional Buda and more modern Pest. Budapest is aptly called "Paris of the East," for its beautiful evening illumination and reflected lights in the Danube's waters.
This small village is distinguished by a fine Gothic church that Henry IV of France believed to be the most beautiful in his kingdom. Beyond the town are highly romantic ruins of Jumieges Abbey, consecrated in 1067 in the presence of William the Conqueror.
Cernavoda is a town in Constanta County, Dobrogea, Romania. Cernavoda was founded (under the name Axiopolis) by the ancient Greeks in the 4th century BC as a trading post for contacts with local Dacians.
Set along the Vltava River in the southern region of the Czech Republic, Cesky Krumlov is a quaint city best known for the art and architecture of its old town and Krumlov Castle. Since the town's construction in the late 13th century, visitors have enjoyed its many festivals and castle events.
This lovely town in the heart of Burgundy is a starting point for excursions to Dijon. Historic sights in Dijon include the crypt of St. Benigne, the Norte-Dame quarter, and the Palais des Ducs which today houses the City Hall and the Fine Arts Museum.
Located between Avignon and Orange, Chateauneuf-du-Pape spreads out at the foot of the remains of it's fortress castle. The village looks over the plain of Comtat and the 3 000 hectares of vine fields. The village is almost completely dedicated to its world famous wine "Chateaunef du Pape" which is also part of the similarly famous Cotes du Rhone.
Following the course of the Moselle river for more than 100 miles is the beautiful Moselle Valley. The prettiest town in this popular wine-producing region, Cochem occupies the site of one of the valley´s earliest settlements. The medieval-style Reichsburh Castle, which dominates the town from atop a hill, is worth seeing, as is the Old Town with its cobblestone streets and halftimbered houses.
Coimbra was once the capital of Portugal, and the birthplace to six of Portugal's kings from 1139 to 1256. It is also home to one of the oldest universities in Europe. Of particular interest is the library, Biblioteca Joanna, which houses an amazing collection of more than 300,000 books dating back to the 12th century.
Lying in the heart of the vineyards of the Alsace, Colmar is a city made for strolling. Its famed historic district is now a vast pedestrian zone, with medieval houses boasting carved gables, galleries with beautiful bannisters, and doors adorned with lavish woodwork.
The largest city on the Rhine, its commercial importance was already established as long ago as the Middle Ages. In the time of the Roman Empire, Cologne was the most important trading and manufacturing centre north of the Alps.
Conflans-Sainte-Honorine is a commune in the northwestern suburbs of Paris, France. The commune takes its name from the rambling chateau of Conflans, where the archbishop of Paris commissioned Andre Le Notre to lay out extensive gardens descending in deep terraces towards the Seine. Nothing remains of the chateau or the gardens save a monumental stair, descending in matched flights either side of a central niche, which remains isolated at the end of a cul-de-sac, backed by a large block of modern flats.
Romania's second largest city, Constanta attracts by the harmony between ebulient business world and intense cultural life. Developed upon the ancient ruins of the Greek stronghold Tomis, Constanta has always been a centre of ethnic and spiritual diversity, a pole of economic exchanges in the Black Sea region and in South-Eastern Europe.
Relax and enjoy your vacation onboard your ship. You can do as much or as little as you want.
Founded in the 12th century, Decin is set in a gorge of the Elbe River near the German border. Considered to have one of the country's most appealing landscapes, the town's beauty comes from its deep valleys and amazing rock formations. Nestled on a 165-foot cliff is an 18th century castle, which dominates the city from above.
Deggendorf with its well-known and impressive monuments and numerous sights also offers a diverse culture that will surprise the visitor. And if you are willing to sample the Bavarian hospitality and the traditional kitchen, your stay in the lovable Danube city will create the perfect choice.
Immerse yourself in cosy and historical Delft, one of the best-preserved towns in the Netherlands and birthplace of 17th-century Dutch painter Jan Vermeer. A gem of a town known as the city of the princes, Delft is set within an intricate tapestry of canals, cobbled streets and charming pedestrian bridges. Famous for its blue pottery, the town is a truly enchanting place where you can spend a relaxing and rewarding time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Visit the Temple of Hathor in Dendera, one of the best-preserved temples in Egypt, which contains a rare depiction of Cleopatra and her son Caesarion.
Dessau was the capital of the dukes of Anhalt-Dessau from 1603 to 1918, and until 1945, capital of the Free State of Anhalt. During World War II, it was nearly destroyed because it was the site of the Junkers aircraft plant, but some of its castles and parks survived. Dessau is the starting point for tours of the beautiful grounds surrounding Worlitz Castle, summer home for the Dukes of Anhalt-Dessau. The 18th century castle is best known for its stunning palace grounds. Considered the first landscaped park of Germany, the many English-style gardens featuring canals, lakes, pavilions, grottoes and statuary were inspired by Prince Franz Anhalt-Dessau's visits to England.
Deventer is a busy commerce town, a centre for industry, trade and transport. It is situated on a crossroads of important railway, motorway, and waterway routes. Although the river IJssel is still used for transport today, this has become much less. Deventer is nowadays mainly seen as important for it's rail and road junctions. Its central position and excellent accessibility make the town attractive to companies wishing to situate large distribution centres and storage facilities. The industrial estate is situated near the A1 motorway. Many goods and services are dispatched from here daily. The centre of Deventer is also easily accessible, with excellent parking facilities.
The old fortress settlement of Dnepropetrovsk is one of Ukraine’s most important commercial cities, and many parts have remained untouched for 150 years. Its museum, housed in a beautiful old building, showcases its fascinating history. The city and surroundings are known for green hills, beautiful embankments, historic boulevards and lush parks. Nearby lies Monastryskiy Island, home to the monastery built by Byzantine monks.
Ancient Dordrecht sits picturesquely between two branches of the Rhine, and was the inspiration for many painters in the 17th & 18th centuries. Attractive Voorstraats Haven, the main canal, winds through the town's center, and the main shopping street, lined with handsome houses and tiny shops, follows along its banks.
Dresden, the capital of Saxony, is world-renowned for its art treasures, outstanding theatrical productions, and architecture. See the Green Vault, with its exquisite collection of jeweled objets d´art in gold and silver. Visit the 18th-century Zwinger palace, one of the greatest examples of Baroque architecture in Germany, and Semper Opera House, with performances from September through May.
Set amidst the scenic Wachau Valley, Durnstein is encircled with vine-clad hills and beautiful landscapes. The village maintains its medieval atmosphere by means of its cobblestone streets, and boasts enchanting 18th century houses.
Dusseldorf is the lively provincial capital and the centre of the Rhineland. It is home to the seat of government and the Knigsallee, one of the most beautiful German shopping avenues. The enchanting Altstadt (Old Town) is known as the world's longest bar!
The city centre, new living and firms old buildings or historically adapted new buildings restored carefully in modern architecture, as well as the professional school Eberswalde with their far away well-known Eberswalde distinguish library.
Edam is a small village in the province of North Holland in the Netherlands. The town of 7,000 inhabitants is mostly a bedroom community for Amsterdam, but was once a thriving seaport.
A beautifully preserved village with cobblestone streets and a rich maritime past, Enkhuizen retains its ramparts, harbor, and many beautiful Dutch buildings. Visit the exceptional Zuider Zee Open Air Museum, a detailed replica of an old Dutch harbor town between 1880-1932.
Erlangen is situated in the northern part of the south German "Land" of Bavaria in the area known as Franconia (Franken in German.) The city of Erlangen has a population of just over 100,000 and therefore falls just within the German legal definition of a "city". Certainly in Britain, cities are much larger than this and a visitor from the UK would probably class Erlangen as a medium-sized town - which makes it much easier to get to know.
The 1,200-year-old former Free Imperial City lies nestled in the beautiful Neckar valley, surrounded by hillside vineyards. It delights visitors with its winding, cobblestoned alleys in the historical Old Town.
Esztergom boasts some of the most magnificent monuments in the country. Marvel at the cathedral, a replica of St. Peter´s in Rome, and the remains of the Romanesque Royal Palace. An overland excursion to Szentendre and Visegrad features a drive along the picturesque Danube Bend. In Szentendre, tour the Museum of Margit Kovacs. In Visegrad, see the ruins of the old palace, the castle, and 13th-century Salomon Tower.
Frankfurt has a rich history dating back to the early Middle Ages. A city where Holy Roman emperors were crowned and the first German parliament assembled, Frankfurt is also the birthplace of Goethe and one of the joint capitals of Charlemagne´s empire.
Historically, the English called this town Gaunt, after John of Gaunt. The town of Ghent is built up around two seventh-century abbeys, St. Peter´s and St. Bavo´s, and Gravensteen´s castle, built in the ninth century. Due to the similar styles of the Flemish merchants and architects that settled Ghent, this city is sometimes considered a twin of nearby Brugge.
Giurgiu is the capital city of Giurgiu County, Romania in the region once called Vlasca. It is situated amid mud-flats and marshes on the left bank of the Danube. Three small islands face the city, and a larger one shelters its port, Smarda. The rich corn-lands on North are traversed by a railway to Bucharest, the first line opened in Romania, which was built in 1869 and afterwards extended to Smarda.
The village of Giverny is situated on the right bank of the Seine River. The impressionist painter, Claude Monet, rented a house in the village in 1883, working there until his death. The house, known as the Fondation Claude Monet, was eventually purchased by the artist and was transformed, inspiring many of Monets later paintings. Today, the famous house and its spectacular gardens are open to the public, serving as the major attraction for visitors to the area.
A peaceful farming community where your cruise pauses for a tour ashore and a visit to the well preserved, fortress-like, Kirill Belosersk Monastery.
The area were now Gouda lies, was still covered with swamps and wet land around the year 1000. One of the most important rivers cutting through that area was the "Gouwe" river. Alongside its banks the first settlers came to live during the 11th and 12th centuries. Most people came to build a house around the fortified castle of the family "Van der Goude". The small city began to grow and named itself Gouda" (after the "Van der Goude" family).
Greifswald is a hanseatic and university city in the northern part of Germany. You can find it on the Baltic Sea between the islands of Ruegen and Usedom. The historic city was founded in 1250. Soon after its foundation it became a member of the Hanseatic League. 200 years later Greifswalds university was founded in 1456. Today there are 55000 residents and 7000 students.
On the left bank of the Danube, southeast of Ardagger, comes the picturesque little town of Grein, the life of which is closely associated with shipping. Above the town to the west towers the imposing Greinburg castle, which now houses the Austrian Shipping Museum. The castle, built in the 15th century, has a charming 17th century arcaded courtyard.
This graceful city, located at the mouth of the Elbe on the North Sea, is one of Europes busiest ports. Enjoy its stunning architecture, museums, and theaters. Discover the shopping arcades and outdoor cafes of the Inner Alster. Or stroll through the lavish parks and gardens of the Outer Alster.
Heidelberg is located approximately 80KM to the south of Frankfurt and is sometimes described as being at the heart of Europe. Given that European borders are in a constant state of flux this is probably no longer true! Heidelberg isn't a large place. Visitors generally spend most of their time in the old town. The old town starts at Bismarckplatz, which is the main hub for trams and buses, at one end of the Hauptstrasse. The old town then runs along the Haupstrasse all the way down to the the Karlstor, past the castle. The Haupstrasse was pedestrianised in 1976. Generally you won't see too many cars in the old town. If you're staying outside of the centre, then all you need to do is hop on a bus or tram that is going in the direction of Bismarckplatz. The Hauptstrasse runs parallel to the river Neckar.
Heilbronn is a port on the Neckar River. A commercial and industrial center, its manufactures include metal products, machinery, and wine. Heilbronn was the site (early 9th cent.) of a Carolingian palace and in the 14th cent. became a free imperial city. Although it suffered in the wars of the 16th cent., particularly in the Peasants' War, the city rose to great commercial prosperity in the late 16th and early 17th cent. In 1802, Heilbronn passed to Wurttemberg, and later in the 19th cent. it acquired industrial importance. In World War II (especially 1944) much of the city was destroyed, but many of its historic buildings have been reconstructed. Points of interest include the church of St. Kilian (13th through 15th cent.) and the Gotzenturm, a tower built in 1392, which is mentioned in Goethe's drama Gotz von Berlichingen (1772).
Hilpoltstein is a town in the district of Roth, in Bavaria, Germany. It is situated 10 km southeast of Roth bei Nurnberg and 30 km south of Nuremberg. The town has about 13,000 inhabitants.
Located on the southern bank of the Seine River, opposite Le Havre and less than an hour from Rouen, the town of Honfleur is the most picturesque of all of Normandys seaports, attracting artists for centuries. A yachting, tourist and small fishing center, its 17th-century harbor is surrounded by 15th- and 16th-century buildings. The town has been made more accessible with the addition of the Pont de Normandie bridge, which links Honfleur directly to Le Havre.
The visitor to Hoorn will at once realize its unique character. Here is a town which cherishes its rich past, but which also marches forward into the twenty-first century. Close to Amsterdam and Schiphol, enjoying excellent accessibility and nestled alongside the picturesque Markermeer, Hoorn has every quality it needs to be an attractive place in which to live, work and play.
The town of Hrensko is on the edge of the Bohemian Switzerland National Park (Ceske Svycarsko) bordering with Germany. The town's German heritage is obvious in the architecture. Half-timbered German style houses give the town a unique charm. Hrensko offers a variety of facilities for travelers including restaurants and hotel options, as well as tacky souvenir stalls. It is a good base from which to explore the park. Unfortunately Hrensko's location in a gorge on the Elbe River and Kamenice Brook make it prone to flooding. In the spring of 2002 and again in 2006 the town was hit hard by flood waters, submerging whole sections of the town and forcing evacuations.
The Western Carpathians are the lowest of the three ranges and are fragmented by many deep structural depressions. They have historically functioned as "gates," which allow easy passage but can be readily defended. The most famous of these is the Iron Gate on the Danube.
More than 1,000 years old, Kalosca is a quaint town filled with culture. Famous for its paprika, more commonly known as "red gold," the town boast's the world's first Paprika Museum. A cultural center, Kalosca is a great place to see world-renowned Hungarian crafts. Points of interest include the House of Folk Arts and the beautiful cathedral.
Located on the IJssel river, Kampen was an important medieval center. It was member of Hanseatic League in 15th cen., but was surpassed by Amsterdam as a commercial center in 16th cen.. Kampen is also noted for its medieval gateways & churches.
Karlsruhe is located on the Rhine and in the top of the Black Forest, close to the French border. The city was founded in 1715 by margrave Karl Wilhelm von Baden.
Karlstadt, with its architecture dating mainly from the eighteenth century, is an integral monument to city expansion in the Baroque era and one of Dsseldorf's most beautiful quarters. With its dense accumulation of antique-shops, galleries and art dealers, especially in Bilker Strae, it is the tip for art-lovers.
Kazan, which like Rome stands on seven hills, is the capital of the ancient people and country whose names, though familiar, are shrouded in misconceptions. The people are the Kazan Tatars; the country is Tatarstan. Situated, as a result of historical circumstances, in the very heart of Russia, only eight hundred kilometres to the east of Moscow, Kazan is the capital of a multi-national republic that occupies the area between the Volga and the Ural Mountains.
The Danube finally reaches adulthood at the spectacular Donaudurchbruch gorge near Kelheim. The wild and romantic section between Weltenburg and Kelheim is best experienced from the water. In Kelheim it is well worth climbing up to the classical Hall of Liberation where you will be rewarded with a breathtaking view over the idyllic Altmhl valley.
Kherson, Ukraine is the city of two ports, a River and Sea port, that's why the Kherson trade port is connected with 42 countries of the world. Kherson, Ukraine stretches along the high right bank of the river Dnipro, this is the area where the Dnipro runs into many branches and forms many islands. Kherson, Ukraine is situated on the plain territory called the Steppe.
Kiev, also Kyiv, is the capital and the largest city of Ukraine. This 1,500-year old city, with a population of nearly 3 million people is distinguished for its rich architecture and cultural life. Take a walk through the ancient streets of this scenic city, feel its unique beauty and the spirit of the past.
Sail to Kinderdijk, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Tour this ingenious network of windmills and other flood management devices. You learn why the windmills were built and see how they work, plus you enter an actual working windmill for a tour of its mechanisms and living quarters.
Situated at the north end of Lake Onega, Kizhi Island is home to the famed Open Air Museum of Architecture. Dozens of buildings, including wooden houses, windmills and two 18th-century wooden churches, portray the region's unusual and visionary architecture. Kizhi's most famous building is the three-tiered, fairy tale-like Transfiguration Church, dating from 1714. With its 22 domes, it rivals the splendor of St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow. Within the same walled compound, see the 1862 octagonal bell tower and the Church of Intercession, built in 1764 without the use of a single nail.
While exploring this lovely town, visit the nearby 18th-century Pillnitz Castle featuring a mix of Baroque and Far Eastern architectural styles. Discover its fine collection of 13th- to 20th-century arts and crafts and magnificent gardens with exotic plants and trees.
This 2,000-year-old city at the confluence of the Moselle and Rhine rivers is the cultural and business center of the Middle Rhine region. History buffs can explore the Neoclassical Residence Schloss, the Prince Elector´s palace; the Deusches Eck, a settlement founded by the German Order of Knights in 1216; and Ehrenbreitstein, the oldest fortress in Europe.
The fortress at Konigstein is built on a sandstone mesa some 360 meters above the Elbe River southeast of Dresden. It has served for hundreds of years as a point of defence for Saxony, as well as a prison for high ranking prisoners of war through World War II.
Konigswinter is a popular resort at the foot of the Siebengebirge. A rack railroad runs up to the summit of the Drachenfels, on which stand the ruins of a castle built in 1147 and destroyed in 1634. There are good views, extending as far as Cologne.
Kostolac is a small Serbian town on the Danube river in the Branicevo District, located where Viminacium used to be. Viminacium was devastated and destroyed in the middle of the 5th century, and it remained forgotten and buried like Pompeii, which disappeared under a flood of lava from Vesuvius in 79 A.D.. That analogy and the recognition that the remains of the Roman town and the military camp represent a site of exceptional interest explains why Viminacium has been called the Balkan Pompeii.
Despite the extensive variety among Moscow's big and small cities, Kostroma is truly in a class all its own. Adding to the uniqueness, is the fact that the city is surrounded by the wide and stately Volga River and rolling hills of the surrounding countryside. This as given entire generations of city builders the opportunity to add to the architectural silhouette of Kostroma.
is an important industrial city in the Poltava Oblast (province) of central Ukraine. Serving as the administrative center of the Kremenchutskyi Raion (district), the city itself is also designated as a separate raion within the oblast, and is located on the banks of Dnieper River.
Krems an der Donau is the eastern gateway to the Wachau Valley, one of Europe's loveliest river landscapes. It is also one of the oldest cities in the land. This history extending back more than a thousand years is evident everywhere - in the streets and squares, in the old monasteries and churches, in the town houses and fortifications. The historical center of Krems is one of the most beautiful in Europe. Over the centuries, builders and architects have created a unique city'scape here that has been lovingly cared for and preserved. These efforts have not gone unnoticed. In 1975 Krems was singled out as a "Model City for Historical Preservation" and in 2000 it was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. With all this history, you might think that the city is dominated by the past. In reality, Krems is very open to modern life: Contemporary art and culture play an important role here, adding variety and energy to public areas throughout the city.
Situated south of the Douro, enchanting Lamego is a major market center set amid vineyards and lush, fertile countryside. The town boasts several fine buildings, including the 18th-century pilgrimage church Nossa Senhora dos Remedios, a Gothic cathedral and an 11th-century castle.
By the time you reach Lauenburg, a picturesque little town on the Old Salt Route, you can no longer overlook the fact that the Elbe has changed the subject and is becoming a river for serious shipping. The historic Lauenburg-Boizenburg shipping company organizes excursions on the Kaiser Wilhelm paddle-steamer to the worlds biggest ship lift at Scharnebeck.
Home of the impressionist painter William Kimmich, enjoy a gallery of his work as well as the lush and enchanting offerings of the Black Forest.
The port of Le Havre lies at the mouth of the Seine River that flows to romantic Paris, "City of Lights." Paris features the incredible treasures of the Louvre, the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower and Sacre Coeur.
The commune of Le Pecq is located in a loop of the Seine river at the foot of the castle of Saint-Germain-en-Laye. Its territory is distributed on two banks of the river and includes the small Corbiere island. It is highly urbanized except for the Corbiere island, which is partially protected as a nesting zone for migratory birds.
The city of Leitmeritz is located opposite the delta of the Eger River at the right bank of the Elbe River. Take a walk through the historical center of town and see the Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Empire houses. On the city square, you will see a column of Mother Mary dating back to 1681 and the old city hall with a cloister and Roland column. The Cup House is the landmark of the city. Be sure to see the Catholic University, the old theater and the St. Stephen Cathedral.
Ancient times are evoked by the hilltop Richard the Lionheart's Chteau Gaillard. Set deep in one of the loops of the Seine River and surrounded by high chalk hillsides, this quaint French town also houses the Nicholas Poussin museum and the Churches of Notre-Dame and Saint Sauveur. Take a riverboat ride along the Seine to the nearby Colegiate of Ecouis and enjoy the scenic waterway.
Under the rule of the mighty Habsburgs, Austria was the dominant political force in Central Europe. Today it may be politically reconciled to being a minor player in the European Union but it has few peers as a year-round holiday destination, with plenty of winter sports in the Schwarzenegger-sized Alps, some of the most impressive and overblown architecture in Europe and an unrivalled musical tradition that even The Sound of Music couldn't sully.
At the confluence of the Labe (Elbe) and Ohre Rivers, in the picturesque Ceske Stredohori region, lies Litomerice, one of the oldest and most beautiful towns in the Czech Republic. The surrounding countryside is often referred to as the "Garden of Bohemia", and the same name is used for an annual fair held in Litomerice. Currently the city is home to about 26,000 people.
Strong currents have caused many boats to smash into the Lorelei Rock. In the 19th century a legend became established that there was a beautiful lady who sat on the rock combing her long blonde hair and singing a song - attracting the attention of passing sailors and causing them to crash into the rocks. Several poets have been inspired to write poems based on this story.
The city of Ludwigsburg has many different faces. It's the county seat of local government, has a population of 85,000 in seven suburbs, 50 factories, 1200 craft-oriented and commercial companies and over 2000 wholesale and retail outlets. It's a university town, home to a teachers' training college, a polytech college and the only film academy in the state. But Ludwigsburg is also the city with the biggest and best-preserved baroque palace in all of Germany. It was the residence of the king of Wurttemberg and is called the cradle of Swabian poetry.
Luxembourg boasts a large array of historical and cultural sights that are worth seeing, lots of interesting and picturesque spots you can discover, countless legends and anecdotes worth relating.
Set along a narrow peninsula between the Rhone and Saone Rivers, Lyon is located in the heart of France's Provence region. Visitors can take in panoramic views from atop Fourviere Hill and step into the past when they tour Vieux Lyon's (Old Lyon's) cobblestone streets and 16th century architecture. Now an important educational center, Lyon's cultural life is reflected in its buildings, museums and houses. Dominating the skyline is the Basilica of Fourviere, known for its lavish interior decorations of marble and mosaics.
The capital of Limburg and one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands, Maastricht is a harmonious blend of past and present. Relive the days of you're with a stroll through the city´s historical center, or take a fascinating tour of the famed limestone caves of Mount St. Peter. Maastricht is also famous for the "Treaty of Maastricht," which laid the foundation for the political and economic reunification of Europe.
A stroll along the quays of this sunny city reveals the natural beauty of the Saone river. See the Benedictine monastery of Cluny for a glimplse of the abbey´s former glory, view part of the Roman transept, the octagonal tower, the Chapelle de Bourbon, and the monastery with its cloisters. Wine connoisseurs may journey to Maconnais for a wine tasting at a local winery.
Although heavy bombing in 1945 destroyed some 80% of this city, Magdeburg today is a glorious example of a lively German town. A former seat of an archbishopric in 968 A.D., and later a member of the Hanseatic League, the city's historic roots can be visually traced through the town's surviving architecture from the 11th century Church of Our Lady, to the Cathedral of Marie and Catherine. The town also boasts the famous 1240 A.D. statue of Magdeburger Reiter (Magdeburg Rider), the oldest German equestrian statue.
Since the opening of the Main-Danube Canal in 1992, the Danube now forms part of the transcontinental Rhine-Main-Danube Waterway that allows vessels to travel 2,200 miles from Rotterdam on the North Sea to the port of Sulina on the Black Sea.
Located in the heart of the Rhine wine region, Mainz has played many historic roles. Due to its favorable location on the mouth of the Main River and being close to the mouth of the Nahe River, Mainz gained economic and political strength. Under Roman rule, it served a key part of the Roman Empire's northern defenses and during the Middle Ages, it served as a major trade center. Later, Mainz became home to printing pioneer Johannes Guttenberg.
Mandrogi, located in the middle of the final locks leading to St. Petersburg, is really more of a tourist attraction than a live-in village. It too features a collection of old wooden houses but almost everything on the island is directed toward visitors.
Today, Mannheim still does just as much to promote culture and the arts as it did in the time of Prince Elector Carl Theodor. The city's classical "chessboard" ground plan dates from the 17th century. The former heart of the Kurpfalz is now the lively centre of the Rhine-Neckar triangle, with a very strong service sector and a rich and varied cultural and arts scene. The city centre is particularly attractive, with its elegant shops and many inviting cafe's and restaurants.
The picturesque island fishing village of Marken is connected by a dike to the mainland. The town represents a living history, visible in many of the cafes and shops as well as in its handicrafts and the traditional dress of the locals. Marken is especially known for the manufacture of traditional wooden clogs.
Surrounded by idyllic wine villages, Meissen dates back more than one thousand years. The city is dominated by the group of 13th- and 14th-century Gothic cathedral buildings and by the Albrechtsburg Castle, sitting high atop a hill. Meissen is world-famous for its Meissenware, fine porcelain produced here since the early 1700's. Utilizing rich deposits of china clay and potter's earth, all china items are molded by hand and the finished pieces always feature the trademarked blue crossed swords identifying the ware. Visitors may wish to tours the Meissenware museum and factory to gain insight into the porcelain's history and production process.
Set amidst an important wine-growing region with picturesque villages and hilltop castles, the charming city of Melk lies at the confluence of the Danube and Melk Rivers at the base of the Wachau Valley. An imposing 900-year-old Benedictine abbey, a breathtaking example of baroque architecture, overlooks the town from its dramatic hilltop location. This architectural treasure has 365 windows, one for each day of the year. Its beautiful library houses medieval manuscripts and marvelous frescoes by Paul Troger, and its meticulously kept grounds are inviting and picturesque.
Visitors have been pouring in and revelling in the accessibility of this top tourist destination since things changed with a thump in 1989. Veteran travellers, meanwhile, are often heard lamenting about no longer having Prague to themselves. But the Czech Republic is still all things to all people. While Prague shakes with excitement, almost everything outside this astonishing city is still off the beaten tourist track and unspoiled.
Middelburg is the capital of Zeeland, once one of the most important provinces of the Netherlands, which gave its name to New Zealand.Now the province is one of the calmer areas of the Netherlands, with great beaches and watersport facilities and cozy little towns with cobbly streets.
A quaint Bavarian village, Miltenberg began as a Roman fort on the Main. The Gothic grandeur of its Merchant Hall and many Medieval and Renaissance houses reflect its affluence and cultural wealth. Enticing outdoor cafes, half-timbered houses and a 400-year-old fountain are among the memorable sights you'll see in Market Square.
Founded more than 2,000 years ago by the Romans, Pecs was a center of early Christian Hungary before becoming a Turkish cultural center during the Ottoman rule. Let history unfold as you visit the Zsolnay and Vasarely Museums.
Moscow's origins as a symbol of Russian spiritual and political power go back more than 850 years, so it's no surprise that today the city is the barometer and nucleus of the changes sweeping through Russia. Its vitality and chaos are a direct result of the collapse of communism and the efforts of its citizens to reinvent their lives. Nowhere are Russia's contrasts more apparent than here - ancient monasteries and ultra-modern monoliths stand side by side, and New Russian millionaires and poverty-stricken pensioners walk the same streets. The populace now prefer impromptu street markets to the huge state department stores, and churches which were destroyed or abandoned during the Soviet era are being lovingly restored. But the real flavour of this city is in its small nooks and crannies, each of them unique.
At its beginning, Nijmegen was an ancient Roman military camp, which later grew to the real city. Today Nijmegen is a big city, with some points of interest for a visitor as the museum of African culture - Africa Museum and the National Bicycle Museum, Velorama (Velorama - National Fietsmuseum) exhibiting 250 authentic veteran cycles.
Nizhni Novgorod, Russia's third largest city, is an exciting city to live in. Unlike Moscow and St. Petersburg, with their large numbers of Westerners, Nizhni Novgorod offers insights into life in Russia's heartland. In previous centuries, Nizhni Novgorod was a commercial hub of Russia, located at the strategic confluence of the Oka and Volga rivers. Today it is the "test site" for democratic reform and free market initiatives. If transition to a peaceful, democratic future is to occur in Russia, Nizhni Novgorod will be the pacesetter. You are a first-hand witness to a unique historical phenomena, a society moving from totalitarianism to democracy with all its ups and downs, joys and sorrows.
Home to the 18th century Korsun Monastery, the small town of Nova Kachovka offers a wonderful riverside promenade and folkloric performances in the Palace of Culture.
Novi Sad arose on the left bank of the river Danube, in Backa. It spreads across the alluvial terrace and on the old Danube road, at the site of the most suitable approach to the Danube and most convenient crossing from Backa into Srem, where the Danube is only 350 m wide.
The second largest city in Bavaria, Nuremburg is filled with gothic churches and traditional half-timbered houses. Although nearly destroyed during World War II, the protective city walls still feature some of the ancient moats, tall watchtowers and grand gateways. Nuremberg was long known for its metal and toy craftsmanship, and the city's modern historical significance can be traced to its role as the location for the post-World War II war crimes trials of the Nazis at the Palace of Justice. These trials were immortalized in the 1961 film, Judgment at Nuremberg.
Oderberg is a town of Germany on the River Oder, in the Prussian province of Brandenburg. It has a Gothic church, dedicated to St Nicholas, and a ruined ancient castle, called Bgrenkasten. The surrounding Oder Marshlands were drained during the reign of Frederick the Great of Prussia. There is an open air museum of villages showing folk and agricultural history and ecology.
Mountainous and green, Oltenia contains some of southeastern Romania's oldest surviving artifacts, edifices, and folklore, with little Turkish, Russian or Greek influence.
Orsova is situated on the bank of the "Iron Gates" reservoir and represents a new town built between 1966-1971, as the old one was flooded. The new town lies along the Cerna bay for a distance of 7 km. The aspect of new Orsova changed radically, the town taking the form of a horseshoe surrounding the newly formed Cerna Bay with expansion towards the west, and, more recently, to the south. The north-eastern limit of the old town became the southern limit of the new town. When the new town was settled, it integrated 3 rural settlements located in the neighbourhood (Jupari, Tufari, Comarnic). Most of the geographical conditions remained the same but some changes became noticeable.
Paris, the romantic capital of France, is considered one of the world's most important and most attractive cities. Its cultural and historical significances are evident in its many noted landmarks, including the famous Eiffel Tower, Montmarte art district, the Louvre Museum and the commemorative Arc de Triomphe. The bustling atmosphere on the shop-lined Champs-Elysees, coupled with the many restaurants, taverns, and performances enhances the night-life in the "City of Lights".
One of Germany´s oldest and most beautiful cities, Passau is ideally located at the confluence of the Inn, Ilz, and Danube rivers. This city, with its charming cobblestone streets and graceful arcades, is perfect for exploring. Begin with the impressive St Stephan´s Cathedral. Beneath its lavish interior is one of the largest pipe organs in the world.
Pecs (pronounced "paych") is a town in the Transdanubia region of Hungary that is full of rich history and interesting sights, holds colorful festivals, and offers plenty of restaurants and hotels for visitors to take advantage of while they explore museums, mosques, churches, and Roman ruins.
Marking the end of the port wine trail, Pinhao is a typical rustic Douro town. Of interest is the railway station, decorated with azulejos, or glazed tile. From here, one can see the dramatic vine-clad terraces, dotted with white quintas where the wine is produced and bottled.
The capital and the administrative center of the State of Brandenburg is Potsdam. This is a city with a great historical past, present and future. The City has been shaped by Frederick William I, the Soldier King and his successors. The baroque inner city, the Dutch Quarter, the palaces and gardens were all created during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Kidnapped by communism for forty years, Prague, capital of the Czech Republic and one of Europe's most beautiful cities, has finally come into full bloom. Its compact medieval center remains an evocative maze of cobbled lanes, ancient courtyards, dark passages and churches beyond number, all watched over by an 1100-year-old castle with liveried guards.
Regensburg (German Ratisbon) is a city in Bavaria in the southeast of Germany at the confluence of the Danube and the Regen Rivers. For a time, Albertus Magnus was the bishop of Regensburg. The fourteenth-century Reichssaal in the town hall was the site of the Imperial Diet between 1663 and 1806. But Regensburg was devastated by French troops in 1809, and was ceded back to Bavaria in 1810. Regensburg's impressive medieval architecture survived the French assault, however, and much of it still stands, including the twelfth-century Steinerne Brcke (stone bridge) across the Danube and the Cathedral of Saint Peter (1275-1524). St. Emmeram's, a ninth-century Romanesque church, was significantly remodeled in the eighteenth century. St. Emmeram's Abbey in 1812 became the palace of the princes of Thurn and Taxis.
Backed by the Serra do Marao mountains and overlooking the wide valley of the River Douro, the peaceful town of Peso da Regua is the official centre of the Port wine growing region. From here, barrels of wine were traditionally transported to Vila Nova de Gaia in the past using wooden sailing ships called rabelos. Today, the journey is made by road using specially-adapted tankers.
Remagen is a city in Germany in the Bundesland of Rhineland-Palatinate, district Ahrweiler. It is about a one hour's drive from Cologne, just south of Bonn, the former West-German capital. It is situated on the River Rhine, which is constantly busy with ships. There is a ferry across the Rhine from Remagen every 10-15 minutes in the summer.
Remich lies on the left bank of the Moselle river, which forms part of the border between Luxembourg and Germany. The commune is the smallest in Luxembourg in area. The Moselle valley is dominated by wine-making and many small wine-making towns, of which Remich is one of the most picturesque and frequented by tourists.
Germany wears its riches well: elegant big-city charm, picture-postcard small towns, pagan-inspired harvest festivals, a wealth of art and culture and the perennial pleasures of huge tracts of forest, delightful castles and fine wine and beer are all there for the enjoying.
Considered as a Russian 'Gateway' to the Black Sea and the Caspian countries, the Rostov Region has developed a transport infrastructure including waterways, railways, roads and Rostov International airport. These communication lines help the region's ports to specialise in handling a number of resources including mineral and construction materials, as well as dry, general and container cargoes.
Roth is a district in Bavaria, Germany. It is bounded by the districts of Nurnberger Land, Neumarkt, Eichstatt, Weibenburg-Gunzenhausen, Ansbach and Furth, and the cities of Schwabach and Nuremberg. In medieval times the region was ruled by many lords. Brandenburg-Ansbach and Nuremberg owned possessions in this territory, and other parts were property of clerical states. When these clerical states were dissolved in 1803, the district fell to Bavaria.
A charming town with a medieval aura, Rothenburg ob der Tauber lies above a deep valley of the Tauber River along Germany's scenic Romantic Road between Wurzburg and the Bavarian Alps. Encircled by towered walls, the city is considered one of Germany's best-preserved villages. According to legend, during the Thirty Years' War, the town was spared destruction by the invading Catholic army when the ex-mayor achieved the mighty task of draining a 3.5-liter tankard of wine in a single draught. Der Meistertrunk, this epic drinking feat that saved the town, is commemorated each year.
Modern Rotterdam is often referred to as a "wonder", because of its amazing Phoenix-like revival after bombs had virtually flattened Rotterdam on May 14, 1940. Highlights are the 180 metres tall Euromast which was built in the record time of 23 days, the impressive sculpture by Osip Zadkine entitled "The Destroyed City" and the town hall resplendent with its embellished facade in the style of the Flemis Neo-Renaissance.
Founded by the Romans, Rouen is situated amidst the chalk cliffs along the Seine, and is filled with half-timbered houses and exquisite gothic architecture. The old city on the right bank of the river is surrounded by a natural amphitheater of hills. Highlights include the Justice Palace and 15th century Aitre Saint-Maclou, a rich example of flamboyant gothic architecture. The city is known for its role in the heroic tragedy of Joan of Arc, patron saint of France. Tried and condemned for heresy, she was burned alive at the stake in the Place du Vieux Marche (Old Marketplace) in May 1431.
Located on the Rhine River, Rudesheim is the chief center of the Rhine wine industry. The famed Drosselgasse, a tavern-lined, cobblestone street, attracts locals and visitors alike. Half-timbered medieval houses, narrow streets, and old inns give the town the flavor of the Middle Ages. Visitors to the town may wish to see the 9th century Bromserburg, the oldest castle on the Rhine or Seigfried's Mechanical Music Museum housing one of the world's largest collections of self-playing instruments.
Russe is Bulgaria's largest river port. The town began as a fortified Roman harbor called "Sexantaprista" (Sixty Ships) in the 1st century B.C. and was later destroyed by barbarians in the 7th century. The Ottomans built a new town, Roustchouk, which bore the names of Cherven and Rousse. Under the Turks, the town became an established trade center and a vital military base with a fortress. The Ruse-Varna railway, built in 1866, greatly contributed to the growth of the town as well.
Saarbrucken sits at the heart of a metropolitan area that bounds westwards to Dillingen and northeastwards to Neunkirchen, in which most of the people of the Saarland live. Historic landmarks in the city include the stone bridge across the Saar (1546), the Gothic church of St Arnual, the 18th century Saarbrücker Schloss (castle) and the old part of the town, the St. Johanner Market
The visitor will find within Salamanca little streets brimming with history and life, that create the enchantment of this city which is not based only in its monuments. It is a summary of history throughout the centuries. In its mix of quietness from the ancient masonry, time has passed together with the joyful noise of the youth, that in its invigorating spirit, resides the magic of Salamanca.
Salzburg is the fourth-largest city in Austria and the capital of the federal state of Salzburg. Salzburg's "Old Town" with its world famous baroque architecture is one of the best-preserved city canters north of the Alps, and was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997. The city is noted for its Alpine setting. It is the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and the setting for parts of the musical and film The Sound of Music, which features famous landmarks in Austria, but focuses mainly on Salzburg. Salzburg is also a student city, with three universities.
Samara is a city situated on the Volga River in the southeastern part of European Russia, Volga Federal District. It was founded in 1586 as a defense outpost, and later grew into a major grain-trading center for the Volga region. It was renamed after the Soviet politician Valerian Kuybyshev. Now it is a large industrial and transport center of European Russia. Important manufacturing in the metropolitan area of Samara-Togliatti-Syzran with a population of more than 3.0 million people is concentrated in motor vehicle (VAZ-GM and SOK Group), railroad equipment, chemicals, oil and gas (Yukos), machinery, metal (Alcoa), and confectionery (Nestle) industries. The city also has an aerospace industry, namely TsSKB-Progress, producing the Soyuz and Molniya launch vehicles.
Saratov is located in the heart of Volga River Valley Region. Once the capital of the Lower-Volga region, it is now the center of one of the biggest provinces in Russia. The city's architecture has been influenced by both European and Asian cultures. The downtown has a large number of buildings built at the turn of the centuries in provincial modern, pseudo-gothic and Moscow baroque style. The university campus, the Covered market, the conservatory, Trinity (Troitsky) and The Spirit Coming Down (Dukhososhestvensky) cathedrals are some of the best examples of these styles. Among the modern landmarks of Saratov is the 2.8 kilometer bridge which connects Saratov with Engels.
The Netherlands is easy to travel in and the locals are friendly and speak excellent English, but towns are still surrounded by canals and castle walls, the endlessly flat landscape which inspired the nation's early artists still stretches unbroken to the horizons, and the dykes still occasionally threaten to give way.
This port city in northeastern Bulgaria is your gateway to Varna, a Black Sea resort, where you'll take a cruise on the Black Sea.
The town of Simbirsk was established in 1648 by voevode (commander of an army, governor of a province in ancient Russia) D.V.Kihtrovo as a fortress to protect the Southern borders of the Moscow State. It became the center of industry and commerce for Middle Volga region by 1770. Its history is closely connected with the history of Russia, for example: the Mongolian Tatar Yoke, numerous peasant wars, the War of 1812, the Decembrist Revolt, revolutions and world wars, Simbirsk was the birthplace of many famous writers, poets, and statesmen: I.A.Goncharov, D.V.Davydov, N.M.Yazykov, D.D.Minaev, N.M. Karamzin, A.F.Kerenski among them. In 1870 V.I.Ulyanov (Lenin) was born in Ulyanovsk and in 1924 Simbirsk was renamed to Ulyanovsk in his honor.
Lying to the west and bordering Brandenburg, Spandau feels almost like a different city even if it has been part of Berlin since 1920. Whereas most parts of Berlin feature Wilhelminian or modern architecture, Spandau's old town reaches further back into the past. Its Nikolai church, built in the gothic style, dates back to about 1200, as do some of the oldest parts of the fortress. The old town has many restaurants and excellent shopping.
The quiet German town of Speyer lies peacefully on the western bank of the Rhine. The city boasts a large imperial Romanesque cathedral, burial place of eight emperors including some of the most famous Holy Roman Emperors. Speyer was once a major Celtic center that has traded hands several times between the Romans and the Huns. Six majestic towers still dominate the city's skyline.
The old Hanseatic town of Stralsund is home over 800 beautifully maintained medieval buildings in the old part of town that are well worth a visit.
The multicultural city of Strasbourg exhibits both French German influence due to its location along the Rhine River at the border of both countries. The old streets of "Petit France" with wooden houses and picturesque canals seem to make time stand still. The carefully restored Cathedral of Notre Dame contains a combination of architectural styles, and is most recognized for its 465-foot tall, graceful spires. Another landmark is the 18th century Chateau des Rohan, which houses three of the city's major museums.
Svishtov (also known as Svistov) is a town in northern Bulgaria, located in Veliko Tarnovo Province on the right bank of the Danube. Svishtov is identified with the Roman colony Novae mentioned by Ptolemy. The exact site appears to have been Staklen, to the west of the present town, which has gradually moved eastward since the 16th century, when it was almost destroyed in the Turkish wars.
Situated in the heartland of Europe, Poland has been both a bridge and a front line between eastern and western Europe. Today, free from outside interference, Poland is the place to go if you're interested in seeing how a nation picks itself up off the floor and tries to reinvent itself. It's a multifaceted country where the capital and medieval old towns are coddled by contemporary city slickers and where horse-drawn carts negotiate country lanes in areas where the 20th century appears to have got lost somewhere down the road.
Fine examples of Gothic brick architecture abound in Tangermunde, one of the former Hanseatic towns in the Altmark region. Medieval fortifications, including the Neustadter gate, dominate the town´s center. Don´t miss the 15th-century parish church of St. Nicholas.
Situated directly on the banks of the Elbe, this city played a key role in the Protestant Reformation. Fortified Hartnefels Castle, the most important early Renaissance palace in Germany, dominates the city. From 1485, it was the principal residence of the Ernestine Dukes and it houses the first purpose-built Protestant church. Famous residents of the castle, five brown bears, are kept in the dry moat according to a centuries' old tradition. Torgau was a hotbed of Protestant activity, the Torgauer Bund (Association of Torgau) was founded here in 1525 as a refuge for Protestants.
The immposing 16th-century Castle and Roman ruins that dot the countryside of Tournon are a photographer´s dream. Visit the Hermitage and St. Joseph´s vineyards. Consider the optional excursion to the Ardeche region, one of the area´s natural wonders, via the nostalgic steam locomotive "Le Mastrou."
The beauty of Burgundy with its romantic castles, churches, and royal palaces, comes to life on a tour of this lively city. See the cloister of St. Philibert. Then head for the medieval city of Beaune. Visit the famous Hotel-Dieu, which houses Van dr Weyden´s painting of the Last Judgement. Crown your tour with a wine tasting at a chateau in the vineyards.
From Trevoux, enjoy a wonderful excursion to the Beaujolais wine country. Cross the land of the "golden stones," named for the ochre yellow limestone of its houses and castles, and marvel at the remarkable beauty of this lovely vineyard.
In the 4th century, Trier was the capital of Gaul. The 3rd century Porta Nigra is the finest Roman relic in Germany. There are the remains of an Amphitheatre and Baths. Later monuments include the Gothic Church of Our Lady and an early Romanesque Cathedral incorporating remains of a Roman structure.
Tulcea is the gate of the Danube Delta, the administrative center of the county, a touristic place, as well. Built on the sport of the old Dacian and Roman Aegyssus
Drobeta-Turnu Severin is a city in Romania, on the left bank of the Danube, below the Iron Gates. The city, which was originally called Drobetae by the Romans, took its later name of Turnu Severin, or the Northern Tower, from a tower on the north bank of the Danube built by the Byzantines, which stood on a small hill surrounded by a deep moat. This was built to commemorate a victory over the Gauls and Marcomanni by the Roman emperor Septimius Severus (222-235). Near Turnu Severin are the remains of the celebrated Trajan's bridge, the largest in the Empire, built in 103 by the architect Apollodorus of Damascus. The Danube is about 1,200 metres (4,000 feet) broad at this spot. The bridge was composed of twenty arches supported by stone pillars; only two are still visible at low water.
Founded in 1148 along the Volga River, Uglich is a magnificent city to behold from the river. Its many colorful churches and cathedrals blanket the horizon, making Uglich one of Russia's most adored cities. The magnificent Church of St. Demetrius on the Blood was built on the site where the body of nine-year-old Ivan the Terrible's son, Dimitry, was found under mysterious circumstances. Other architectural monuments include the Kremlin Palace, Cathedral of the Resurrection, and St. John's Church.
Ulanovsk is a city on the Volga River in Russia, 893 km east from Moscow.
The Nature Park on the Isle of Usedom is made up of a wide variety of different landscapes, such as wide, sandy beaches, imposing steep bluffs, shallow lakes girdled by chains of hills, lowland bogs, beach margins and dunes. Small hamlets here have clung to their origins, contrasting with as well as contributing to the well known seaside resorts, such as Heringsdorf, Ahlbeck, Bansin and Zinnowitz on the outer coast.
Surprising, compact Utrecht promises interesting developments at every turn and with its masses of charming and intimate eateries and offers a gastronomic goldmine unparalleled anywhere in the southern area of the Netherlands. Enjoy a day or two strolling around Utrecht's winding streets before making the short journey outside its environs to some interesting and history-laden towns sure to offer a warm welcome and a stimulating stay.
Veere is a municipality and a city in the southwestern Netherlands
Veliko Tarnovo is one of the most ancient Bulgarian towns. The picturesque situation and panoramic view of the town, its rich cultural and historical heritage wins Veliko Tarnovo the recognition as a historical, cultural and tourist center of contemporary Bulgaria. The Tarnovo Schools of Literature and Arts were established and developed here. Remarkable architectural monuments were created; miniature and monumental painting, literature, plastic arts and crafts achieved high artistic level.
Vernon, a little north and across the Seine from Giverny, is a charming provincial town. Its cobblestone streets are reminiscent of the Middle Ages, and some of the half-timbered houses feature magnificent wooden carvings. Highlights include the 11th century gothic church of Notre Dame, a beautiful mill built on the ruins of an old medieval river bridge, and the Maison du Temps Jadis (House of Past Times), the city's oldest house, dating back to the 15th century.
In 1682, France's king Louis XIV moved the royal court from the hustle and bustle of polluted Paris to the tranquil countryside of Versailles; it is here where architects, interior decorators and garden designers had been busily expanding the previous king Louis XIII's modest hunting lodge into a massive complex capable of housing 20,000 people. France's aristocrats and nobility were invited to live at the Chau de Versailles, centralizing power and solidifying the strength of the monarchy.
Vidin is situated in the northwestern-most corner of Bulgaria, at the expansive elbow of the Danube, the grand river which runs through nearly all Western Europe to empty its waters into the Black Sea. The town takes pride in its history, development and traditions. Today Vidin continues to be the venue of extremely beneficial circumstances for foreign trade thanks to its geographical position, natural endowments, economy, history and culture. The town occupies a major place in the national transport system of Bulgaria, which proved decisive in the establishment of the Free Trade Zone. The town is the meeting place of all types of transport - river-going, rail, automobile and air transport. The town also has a direct ferryboat service to and from Romania handling rail cargo, trucks, buses and motorcars, as well as the passage of tourists and a variety of commodities.
A wealth of treasures await you in Vienna - one of Europe´s most dynamic cities. A center of classical music, art, theater, and history, Vienna is the city of the waltz, the Spanish Riding School, Sacher Torte, and the famous Vienna Boys´ Choir. A number of excursions allow you to capture the spirit of this elegant city.
Surrounded by steep hills and situated between France's Burgundy and Beaujolais regions, Vienne is the gateway to Lyon's countryside. The old town is rich in Roman and medieval buildings including ancient market ruins. Vienne's history can be traed through its architecture, dating back to the Roman Temple of Augustus built in the 1st century. Other landmarks include the Abbey of Saint Pierre and the Church of Saint-Andre-Le-Bas.
Located at the converging point of two rivers it has become a busy commercial town mainly based around the lucrative wine and port trade. Its main feature is its fine 15th Century Gothic Cathedral that was originally a church belonging to the Order of Dominicans whose Monastery was completely destroyed in the 19th Century under suspicious circumstances. Nearby is the Igreja dos Clrigos, a church with an attractive Baroque facade and tiled interior.
Vilshofen an der Donau is a town in the German district of Passau.
Germany wears its riches well: elegant big-city charm, picture-postcard small towns, pagan-inspired harvest festivals, a wealth of art and culture and the perennial pleasures of huge tracts of forest, delightful castles and fine wine and beer are all there for the enjoying.
The 10-mile-long, car-free island of Hiddensee consists of two prominent parts: the northern half of the island, or "Dornbusch," and the "Hiddenseer plain" in the south. Enjoy the rugged beauty and visit the former residence of the famous German poet Gerhard Hauptmann in Kloster, now a museum.
Located in one of the most beautiful areas in Southern France, Viviers has retained its Old World charm. The town was developed around its Romanesque cathedral, with facade, porch, and solitary tower that still survive today. Enjoy a privately-arranged organ demonstration.
Volendam is famous both for its fishing industry and a rich musical history. A lot of famous artist in the Netherlands live in Volendam. There are still a lot of local fishing boats, which are worth taking a picture. Each half an hour you can go to the peninsula Marken with a boat, and walk around in this village in the same style as Volendam. There are quite some hotels and restaurants near the harbour, where you can eat while you look over the harbours with the local fishing boats. About each quarter of an hour there drives a bus from Amsterdam to Volendam, and back. Visiting Volendam is quite unique, because you will not see a touristic center, but a place where the locals also like to spend there time.
Volgograd was originally named Tsaritsin, then in 1925 the name was changed to Stalingrad. Stalin died in 1953, but it took another 12 years for the name to be finally changed to Volgograd in 1965 by Khruschev. The city is located on the river Volga. Volgograd, still referred to by war historians as Stalingrad, was the site of THE bloodiest battle in the history of the world. During the struggle the city was reduced to rubble and was the setting for a struggle between the might of the German and Soviet war machines. Because of this there are many fascinating memorials and museums to visit. The city is rich with culture and history, and offers a wonderful experience of Russian life.
Volkligen is a town and a municipality in the district of Saarbrücken, in Saarland, Germany. It is situated near the border with France, on the river Saar. The town is known for its industrial past, the Völklinger Hütte (ironworks) being declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
Vukovar, located in Croatia, has a population of about 20,301. It is located at the confluence of the Vuka river into the Danube and is the center of the Vukovar-Srijem county. Vukovar is the largest Croatian town and river port on the Danube. Its economy is based on farming, viticulture, livestock breeding, textile and food-processing industry.
Wadi El Seboua, the “Valley of the Lionesses,” is named after the great Avenue of Sphinxes which led to the Temple of Ramses II.
Situated at the confluence of the Main and Tauber Rivers, Wertheim is a charming town filled with history. In the 12th century, the Dukes of Wertheim built a castle at this strategic spot. The castle's impressive ruins are witness to the importance of the Dukes of Wertheim. Points of interest include the historical Pointed Tower that has guarded the junction of the Main and Tauber Rivers for 800 years, and the Town Hall built in 1540. Known as a successful merchants' town during the Middle Ages, today Wertheim is famous for its Franconian wines.
Wieck is a channel port for fishing vessels and sport boats as well as a sail school convenient in the southwest Greifswalder Boddens.
The ridge top town of Wimpfen is impressive because it sits high above a sharp ridgeline directly over the Neckar, with much of its ancient city wall still intact, and sporting a very medieval appearance.
A key town of importance to the Protestant Reformation, Wittenberg is encircled by a ring of public parks symbolizing the fortifications of ancient times. Key landmarks of the city include the home of Martin Luther, the Schlosskirche (Castle Church) where Luther posted his 95 Theses, his burial place and St. Marien's Church, where he preached.
Rugen is an island in the Baltic Sea, located off the coast of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. It is Germany's largest island and along with the neighboring islands Hiddensee and Ummanz is administered as part of the Rugen District. Wittower-Faehre is a harbor there.
Wolgast is a seaport town of Germany, in the Prussian province of Pomerania, situated on the river Peene, which separates it from the island of Usedom, 30 m. by rail E. of Greifswald. There are various manufactures. Wolgast became a town in 1247, and after being the residence of the duke of Pomerania-Wolgast, it was ceded to Sweden in 1648. It was captured four times during the Thirty Years War, and in 1675 by Frederick William, elector of Brandenburg, It was restored to Germany in 1815.
Germany wears its riches well: elegant big-city charm, picture-postcard small towns, pagan-inspired harvest festivals, a wealth of art and culture and the perennial pleasures of huge tracts of forest, delightful castles and fine wine and beer are all there for the enjoying.
Built on the site of a fromer Celtic settlement and a later Roman fort. During the medieval period more than a hundred Imperial Diets were held, the most famous being the Diet of 1521 at which Luther defended his doctrines.
Surrounded by Franconian vineyards, Wurzburg was heavily damaged during World War II, but has since been completely restored. Here is Germany's most pristine example of baroque architecture, the great Residenz, built in 1744 by the Prinz-Bishops. Its sweeping staircase and amazing ceiling frescos by Tiepolo survived wartime bombs. Other landmarks include the medieval statue-lined Main Bridge and the Marienberg fortress, originally a Celtic hill fort and later residence of the bishops. The round 8th century church within the courtyard of the fortress is one of Germany's oldest churches.
Oceans, rivers and ice formed the landscape around Xanten. During the Ice Ages huge glaciers pushed up moraines, thus creating the Frstenberg. The Rhine changed its bed and deposited gravels and sand. In Roman times the Rhine consisted of several arms. The Xanten area retains the traces of history. The oldest finds prove the presence of people for thousands of years since the Stone Age. With the occupation of the Rhineland by the troops of Julius Caesar there began a new epoch of intensive settlement and cultural change.
Stretching for 18 miles along both banks of the Volga amidst a region of forests, Yaroslavl was founded in 1010 by Prince Yaroslav the Wise of Kiev. During the next several centuries, Yaroslavl prospered as a trading port and textile-manufacturing center.
Zaporozhye is more than 200 years old and stretches across both sides of the Dnieper River. The city encompasses the environmentally protected Khortitsa Island whose beauty, intrigue and charm have mesmerized artists, authors and poets for centuries. This impenetrable island was an important defense for the Cossacks in protecting themselves against invaders and was integral in the fight to reunite Ukraine with Russia.
Belgium´s medieval port of Zeebrugge leads the way to Bruges, the capital of the Belgian province of West Flanders. As you walk around this city of bridges and canals, you will be captivated by the dignity of the Gothic architecture and the unpretentious display of works of art.
Zerben is a local part of the unit municipality Elbe Parey in the district Jerichower country in Saxonia-Anhalt. Zerben lies in a landscape coined/shaped by forest and water. East of Zerben is the Elbe Havel channel with its well-known air-lock. About 1 km westward far away from the place flows the Elbe.
The village lies on the right bank of the river Labe (Elbe) at an average height of 158m above sea level. The temporal range of settlements is indicated by numerous findings from all pre-historic eras from the Stone Age to the Iron Age. The first records of the name of the village being used come from the foundation charter of the chapter of St. Stephen, given by Spytihnev II. (Zernosech - Sernossiceh terra rusticalis). A written mention of the village is, however, in the "B" section of this charter, dating from the year 1218. The name of the village came about from the type of work of its residents - the cutting of large millstones.
Trzebiez (Ziegenort) is set on the banks of Szczecin Lagoon, the village is situated in the north of Police, on the edge of the Wkrzanska Forest. It consisted of two parts, Trzebiez Mala and Trzebiez Wielka. Due to its advantageous location, the importance of the latter increased in the course of time and a church, a school with dormitory and the administration office were situated here.
Varied landscapes and picturesque islands characterize the northern part of Upper Pomerania. On the west is Rgen, Germanys largest island, flat and dotted with bogs. The hilly eastern region is a land of quiet beaches and gentle backcountry. The narrow island of Hiddensee and the nature wonderland of Fischland-Dar-Zingst complete your tour of this little-touristed and traditional part of Germany.