Set on the banks of the Danube River, the medieval city of Regensburg (or Ratisbon) made a name for itself as an important trade center in the Middle Ages and now serves as a popular tourist destination for those traveling the Romantic Road. The UNESCO World Heritage listed historic center is one of few German towns not destroyed in the war and retains some fine examples of its heritage.
Architectural highlights include the Roman Porta Praetoria Palace; the Herzogshof, once the Palace of the Agilolfingian Dukes; the landmark Dome St Peter, largely regarded as Bavaria’s finest Gothic cathedral dating back to 1260; and the 12th-century Stone Bridge, a crucial river crossing during the Middle Ages and the oldest working bridge in the country. Remnants of the ancient Roman fortress Castra Regina, the grand Old City Hall and the exquisite Rococo style Cathedral Zu unserer lieben Frau, are also all worth a visit.
Regensburg’s charms don’t all date back to medieval times though – the modern city is also a lively student hub, teeming with atmospheric cafés and restaurants, and allegedly boasting the highest concentration of bars in Germany.