• Photo: Boris Stroujko / Shutterstock


If fortune had placed Landshut south of Munich, in the protective folds of the alpine foothills, instead of the same distance northeast, in the subdued flatlands of Lower Bavaria—of which it is the capital—the historic town would be teeming with tourists. Landshut's geographical misfortune is the discerning visitor's good luck, for the town is never overcrowded, with the possible exception of the three summer weeks when the Landshuter Hochzeit (Landshut Wedding) is celebrated (it takes place every four years). The festival commemorates the marriage in 1475 of Prince George of Bavaria-Landshut, son of the expressively named Ludwig the Rich, to Princess Hedwig, daughter of the king of Poland. Within its ancient walls the entire town is swept up in a colorful reconstruction of the event. The wedding procession, with the "bride" and "groom" on horseback accompanied by pipes and drums and the hurly-burly of a medieval pageant, is held on three consecutive weekends, while a medieval-style fair fills the central streets throughout the three weeks.

Landshut has two magnificent cobblestone market streets. The one in the Altstadt (Old Town) is one of the most beautiful city streets in Germany; the other is in Neustadt (New Town). The two streets run parallel to each other, tracing a course between the Isar River and the heights overlooking the town.

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