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The most inspiring museums on the Danube

27th July 2015

The length of the Danube is packed with intriguing cities, each with their own set of remarkable museums, galleries and exhibitions. When you take our 8 Day Danube Cruise, you get plenty of time to explore the likes of Vienna and Budapest at your leisure, but with so many great things to see it helps to have an idea of what’s on offer.

Here are a few of the best museums on the Danube.

Kunsthistorisches Museum (Art History Museum) - Vienna

 


The romantic city of Vienna certainly isn't lacking when it comes to culture and history. After all, Mozart spent a great deal of time here producing some of his most iconic works. Yet while music is as much a part of Vienna as the Danube itself, it’s the Kunsthistorisches Museum (Art History Museum) that we recommend you visit if you only have time for one museum. This magnificent gallery, located close to the equally brilliant Imperial Palace, was built in 1891 to house the imperial family's art collections. Today, the art museum contains one of the biggest and best collections in the world, with a number of iconic pieces hanging on its walls. On top of the largest Bruegel collection in existence, you will find Raphael’s "Madonna in the Meadow," as well as works from Rubens, Velasquez, Rembrandt and Vermeer. Address: Maria-Theresien-Platz , 1010 Wien

The House of Terror Museum - Budapest

 


With a name like the House of Terror, you know that you are in for a grisly time in this museum. Housed in the former communist secret police headquarters, this horrifying, yet intriguing museum documents the fate of those who fell foul to the Hungarian fascist and communist regimes of the 20th century.

Many of those who disappeared into the halls of this wicked building were detained, questioned, tortured and even killed here and the exhibitions at the museum take you through the hopeless tales. As the most interesting chapters of history are often the darkest, this museum tops the lot for Budapest. Address: 1062 Budapest, Andrássy út 60.Andrássy út 60.

Dokumentationszentrum Reichsparteitagsgelaende - Nuremberg

Documentation Centre Nazi Party Rally Grounds, or Dokumentationszentrum Reichsparteitagsgelaende, is one of the most fascinating relics from Nazi Germany. This huge parade ground was once the platform from which the Nazis would host their famous rallies and displays of power. Some 50,000 people could attend the rallies from the viewing gallery and by taking in the permanent exhibition "Fascination and Terror", you will gain a better understanding of the effects that these authoritarian displays might have had on the German people. Address: Bayernstraße 110 90478 Nürnberg

 

LENTOS Kunstmuseum (LENTOS Art Museum) - Linz

As a former European capital of culture in 2009, Linz has plenty of clout in the museum department. Explore the realms of biology, Austrian history, literature, and more - there’s even a cowboy museum, if Stetson hats and the Wild West are your thing. However, the pick of the bunch has to be the LENTOS Art Museum. One of Austria’s most important art galleries, LENTOS boasts a stunning collection of Modern Art ranging from the thought-provoking to the downright bizarre.


The building itself is an impressive sight at night as it lights up in different colours. As it’s right on the banks of the Danube, you may catch a glimpse of this impressive museum in the evening as you settle down to dinner. Address: Ernst-Koref-Promenade 1, 4020 Linz, Austria

Bratislava City Museum (Mestske Muzeum) - Bratislava

Learn all about the rich history of Bratislava and the surrounding region in this concise and fascinating museum. The museum was established in 1868 and documents the earliest periods of Slovakia right up until the 20th century. Split into eight museums throughout the city, the main one is the Museum of the City History, which covers every aspect of Bratislava from culture to social life. To top off your visit, head up the tower and enjoy the sensational views of the city's Old Town. Address: Radnicna ul 1, Bratislava 815 18, Slovakia (Staré Mesto)

 

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Cologne's Alternative Attractions

22nd July 2015

Aesthetically pleasing, Cologne is a city with both style and substance. A collection of cultures, from Roman to Germanic, have led to one of the most impressive skylines in Germany, but there’s much more to this city than pretty buildings and chocolate.

Take some time out to explore properly; with our river cruises you have the majority of the day at your disposal, so plan your itinerary well. Here are a few alternative ideas for your day in Cologne.

 

 

Belgian Quarter (Belgisches Viertel)



While the Old Town is well worth a visit for its picturesque architecture, winding alleyways and location to the main tourist attractions, for a glimpse at the alternative side to Cologne head over to the Belgian Quarter (Belgisches Viertel). Hip, trendy, alternative; whatever adjective you want to use to describe this neighbourhood, it’s a great place for shopping, drinking and dining. You’ll find everything here from artisan coffee shops and bars to boutique fashion stores and art shops. The quiet streets are covered in murals and the area is generally much more laid-back and quiet than the more central parts of Cologne.

 

NS Dokumentationszentrum – Gestapo Prison



Because who doesn’t want to explore the grim depths of a former Gestapo prison? In all seriousness though, this museum relays important information about the Nazi secret police’s role in World War II and also acts as a memorial for the Holocaust. Perhaps its best feature is the critically acclaimed “Cologne in the times of National Socialism” exhibition, which tells the story of the city under Hitler’s rule and it a permanent collection. The building itself is fully intact from the war era, which is quite remarkable considering the amount of bombs the allies dropped on Cologne. A must-visit for history buffs who love to learn about the darker side of European history.

 

Ehrenfeld



Similar to the Belgian Quarter, but with a little bit more art, Ehrenfeld is another lively, yet trendy part of the city. Here, you will find an abundance of original art studios, quaint cafes and one-of-a-kind shops as well as plenty of stunning street art in mural form. Very much the creative heart of the city, the "Coloneum" movie production house and media centre resides here as well as the area’s landmark the Helios-lighthouse; the former home of the famous German electrical engineering company. A largely residential area, this part of the city is slightly further away from the centre but not too far that you can’t get there easily on Cologne’s impressive public transport network. A number of light rail stations connect you to the area through the Cologne Stadtbahn line. Take either 3, 4, 5 or 13 to get there.

 

 

Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum


A museum that takes you on a journey of the world, the Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum is three floors of interactive fun where touching the exhibits is all part of the experience. The first thing that strikes you about this place is the Sulawesi rice boat that hangs in the lobby. From here, you are welcomed to explore the lives of others from cultures all over the planet. Part history lesson, part insight into human diversity, the entire museum is a truly remarkable look at different people, and perhaps how we aren’t all that different.

 

Cologne Cathedral

Although not alternative, no trip to Cologne is complete without a trip to its magnificent Cathedral. This massive church is located right in the centre of the city and, due to its huge size, it’s quite hard to miss. Its status as northern Europe’s largest Gothic church has made it one of Germany’s most popular landmarks so, like we said, it’s hardly off the beaten track

 

 

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River Cruising the Wine Capital of the World

16th July 2015

Iglu Cruise sent Marketeer Chloe on a relaxing 5* river cruise along the Dordogne River in France. Read all about her experience onboard the Viking Forseti, the excellent service she received from Viking River Cruises and the delightful destination of Bordeaux. Read on to find out why a river cruise to the wine capital of the world is a must and an unforgettable experience. [More]

Highlights of the Mekong Delta

13th July 2015

Cruise the cultural waterway of Southeast Asia and experience all that the Mekong Delta has to offer. From the ancient ruins and temples of Angkor Wat to entire floating villages lining the banks of the Mekong, marvel at this fascinating and wonderful part of the world. [More]

Vienna's Finest Coffee Houses

13th July 2015

Take a trip along the Danube river and taste your way through Austria's fascinating and wonderful capital city with our favourite coffee houses of Vienna. Visit a Viennese Kaffehaus for an authentic coffee experience and chat amongst the locals for an idyllic afternoon. [More]

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