Legend has it that the Danube River looks blue if you’re in love. I’ll let you judge for yourself from the pictures. The Danube is to Vienna what the Thames is to London, the Potomac is to DC and the Mississippi is to St. Louis: integral to the city’s past and present. The Danube River was the northernmost border of the Roman Empire and today flows around the city of Vienna. The Danube Canal divides the city as a controlled tributary of the larger river, controlled thus since the end of the 16th century. In summer you can see the Viennese and visitors alike basking in the good weather along its banks. The banks were widened in the 1990s to allow for recreational use.
The Danube flows through 10 countries, from the Black Forest across Austria, carving out the Danube valley with its lovely vistas, vineyards, apricot and cherry orchards before reaching Vienna. It’s said the best apricots in the world come from the Danube Valley. The most scenic part of the Danube Valley is a 40-km region called the Wachau. The river is one part of the scenic beauty, but the hillsides on either side are dotted with castles, churches and picturesque villages and towns. Check back tomorrow for images and information about the most famous of these: Melk Abbey.
Title quote: Lyrics from “The Blue Danube,” music by Johann Strauss II, lyrics by Joseph Weyl