In a three part series we want to show you our favourite European cities starting with those situated on rivers. Generally most exciting cities are near any kind of water. With the following two posts we’ll show you cities at lakes and at the seaside.
It wasn’t easy for us to make this list as we were growing up in a riverside city ourselves and have seen a lot of them in Germany. This list is perfect for everyone who’s trying to find inspiration for a city trip combining sightseeing and relaxing.
As we’re from Germany it’s clear that most of the cities on this list are located in Germany. Each one of them is perfect for a day or weekend trip.
Regensburg, Germany – situated on the river Danube
We grew up in Regensburg and will never say a bad word about our home city in public. The Old Town of Regensburg is fantastic and is separated from Stadtamhof by the Danube. Regensburg in summer is a dream – but the river banks could be better used.
Frankfurt on the Main, Germany
For a few years now we’ve been living in Frankfurt. Another summer city: Sitting at the banks of the Main in the evening and enjoying the view over ‘Mainhattan’ – priceless!
Cochem, Germany – situated on the river Mosel
Wine, a huge castle, colourful houses – Cochem is the most beautiful town situated on the river Mosel and is really popular. Generally the region around the Mosel is surrounded by beautiful villages and castles which are totally worth the visit. Not to mention the delicious wines.
Rüdesheim am Rhein, Germany – situated on the river Rhine
This is one of Germany’s most famous places surrounded by vineyards. You can visit the Lorelei by ship or by car, take the cable car to the viewpoint or sit at one of the many wine stands and just enjoy your time – there’s plenty to do in this little town.
Passau, Germany – situated on the river Danube
Passau – beautiful at any time of the year but please with sunshine. The view from the castle and on the way up there is fantastic – the cathedral and the colourful houses make the city picture perfect. Passau is a Bavarian gem.
Cologne, Germany – situated on the river Rhine
Cologne is a great city. Especially the view over the river, the bridge and the cathedral is amazing – this is the moment you forget the weird taste of the Kölsch.
Hamburg, Germany – situated on Alster and Elbe
‘Hamburg, meine Perle’ – this city is awesome. There are a lot of overhyped cities like Berlin. Hamburg with its beautiful ‘Jungfernstieg’ and the ‘Landungsbrücken’ is certainly not one of them. Hamburg is always worth the trip!
Heidelberg, Germany – situated on the river Neckar
Most beautiful city in Germany? Maybe. Heidelberg has a great Old Town, a huge castle, a great atmosphere at the Neckar banks and offers and amazing view seen from the ‘Philosophenweg’ (Philosopher’s walk) over the city. This city is popular for a reason.
Dresden, Germany – situated on the river Elbe
Germany’s east has nothing to offer? At least Dresden is evidence that this is not the case. The Canaletto view which became famous by a painting of Bernardo Bellotto is prove for the charm of the city.
Ljubljana, Slovenia – situated on the river Ljubljanica
Oh, it was so beautiful here. The atmosphere in Ljubljana is beyond words. Especially in summer when everyone is sitting outside in the cafés and restaurants next to the Ljubljanica, you definitely know you’re at the right place.
Paris, France – situated on the river Seine
Paris, mon amour! This city will never be a once in a lifetime destination. You actually have to be in Paris to understand what makes this city so special. Paris is a fairytale come to life.
Rome, Italy – situated on the river Tiber
Like Paris, Rome is another evergreen among the world’s cities. The many sights and view points, the alleys of Trastevere and the beautiful green Tiber mesmerize everyone coming to Rome.
Lisbon, Portugal – situated on the river Tejo
Lisbon is a mixture of San Fransisco and Rio de Janeiro on the edge of Europe. The view from the Tejo banks over the bridge and the Christ Statue is fabulous. Alfama, Belém and Pasteis de Nata will do the rest.
Mostar, Bosnia and Hercegovina – situated on the river Neretva
Mostar is one of the most beautiful cities at the Balkans. The Stari Most (Old Bridge) connects the Christian and the Islamic parts of the city which is divided by the Neretva. This bridge is iconic. The many cafés and restaurants with their delicious and hearty meals will ensure you’ll love this city.
Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic – situated on the river Vltava
You may just call it Fairytale City at the Vltava. The city appears surreal both seen from the castle or while walking along the alleys. It’s beautiful at any time of the year. When it’s warm enough you can sit in one of the many cafés or restaurants at the Vltava and just enjoy the atmosphere of the city.
Prague, Czech Republic – situated on the river Vltava
The Golden City is another evergreen in Europe. Prague is always a good idea and popular among people all over the world. From the Old Town, the Castle, Letna Park to the cafés at the Vltava – everything is beautiful in Prague.
Florence, Italy – situated on the river Arno
Florence is just awesome. This city has so much to offer, you can easily spend a week here. Sometimes it is really more than overcrowded. I guess we all have to deal with that somehow.
London, England – situated on the river Thames
There are many rivers in Europe that look really tiny in comparison to the Thames. Walking along the Thames belongs to every London trip like seeing Buckingham Palace or Big Ben. Visiting London is a standard trip for many people in this world and it’s always worth the visit.
Strasbourg, France – situated on the river Ill
‘La Petite France’ in Strasbourg would never make you feel like you’re in a big French city. The timbered houses are adorable and the Notre Dame appears mighty and fascinating. We don’t have to mention the food in Alsace – Strasbourg is a city that wants to be visited!
Avignon, France – situated on the river Rhône
‘Sur le Pont d’Avignon’… Well, nowadays there’s only a part of the bridge left. But it’s just looking fabolous in front of the Old Town and gives all visitors the possibility to dance on it. For us Avignon is Provence’s most beautiful city.
What are your favourite riverside towns?
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