The Danube river is one of the longest rivers in Europe (2,850 km / 1,770 miles), second only to the Volga. It passes through 10 countries (some of them Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova), from the small town of Donaueschingen in Germany, where the river begins, all the way to the Black Sea. With a rich history and even myths, the Danube river was the border of the Roman Empire, a trade route for all of Europe; nowadays providing enough water energy (power plants) and food.

The symbolic beginning of the Danube in the Donaubach

The beautiful old town of Donaueschingen is famous for its attraction Donaukele or the source of the Danube. Although there is controversy about exactly where the Danube River begins, since the time of the Roman Empire, Donaueschingen has been declared the starting point of the long river. The arrangement of statues and a fence symbolically represents the great central plateau of the Baar as a mother, and the Danube as the beautiful daughter, to whom she shows the way to the world.

One of the names of the Danube was Oceanos Potamos and at the end of it was the sacred island of Alba dedicated to Apollo, who welcomed / greeted the rising sun in the east. According to a legend, the hero Achilles was buried on this island.


Some of the earliest human cultures inhabited around the Danube, some of which were from the Neolithic period including linear ceramic cultures. The Vinca culture (Serbia, 3rd millennium BC) was located along the Danube, as was the Vucedol culture (Croatia), which was famous for its pottery.

To defeat the Scythians in Scythia, the ruler of Persia, Darius the Great, crossed the river at the end of the 6th century BC, and in 336 BC. Alexander the Great defeated King Sirm and the northern Thracian and Illyrian tribes, marching from Macedonia all the way to the Danube.

From its source to its mouth, the Danube was the border of the Roman Empire, as well as a trade route, but also a military one, for transporting troops and supplying settlements downstream. The reign of Emperor Valentinian I (364-375), the Danube was the northeastern frontier of the Empire.

The oldest bridge over the Danube, built by Apollodorus of Damascus between 103 and 105 AD

Danube Legend

The Moon fell in love with the Sun at a time when people did not live on earth. The beautiful and bright moon, illuminating the whole sky with its brilliance and its silver attire, lined with rays of light and thousands of diamonds. She came to the Sun, but he didn’t notice her, he didn’t care about her silver glow. He himself was in love with a small distant star that was so far away, at the end of the galaxy. The moon understood and was very sad, but also zealously threatened to pay for this audacity.

The night sky darkened, and the moon summoned three evil spirits to advise her. She wanted the Sun for herself and no one else, and one spirit replied:
“Don’t be sad, Queen of the night, once he admires this star, we know how to get revenge.”
And the three spirits whispered in her ear.

As time passed, the Sun and the star raised the rumor of marriage. The Moon changed into the most elegant dress and came to give her wishes to the couple in love. She wished happiness with a smile, but the Moon had gloomy thoughts and actions. When the star was left alone with her jealous companion, the Moon cursed her to suffer as she suffers for the Sun.

Evil spirits appeared and turned the star into a deep and cold lake and sent it to Montenegro Mountain, so that the Sun could never see it, due to the dense forest and the shadow of the crowns.

For many days and nights the lake cried, but a good fairy heard it and appeared before it. Asking her why she was crying, the lake told of the unjust exile away from her lover. The fairy took pity on the bitter lake and turned it into a river that would always flow at sunrise. And so the Danube was this river, and at each sunrise, the beloved couple embrace, and then the day breaks the embrace, the night separates them to return to their arms at the next sunrise.