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The Elbe is the 14th longest river in Europe, flows through Bohemia, Saxony down to Hamburg.
The Name Elbe derives from the ancient indogerman word "albhos" - "white" (river). In modern times it is used for commercial shipping since 1842 as it provides a route between the Hamburg and Prague in Bohemia. The Middelelbe connects to the northgerman canals, thus providing a transport route to the industrial Ruhr Area and the Rhine River at Duisburg.
From its source the Elbe flows southwards, then turns west before it flows north towards the North Sea. At Melnik the Moldau (Vltava) discarges into the Elbe. Actually ithe Vltava is much longer than the Elbe at that point, but due to medieval tradition, the river is still called Elbe. Behind the Czech - German border, the Elbe flows through the Saxony Swiss. North of Meissen the Elbe enters the Northgerman Lowlands. For a short distance the Elbe formed the Inner German border during the Cold War. After it passes Hamburg and its oversea harbour, it discarges into the North Sea.
Total of 7 locks. 6 Locks on the czech side of the border upstream until you reach Melnik (at the confluence of the Vltava). Just close to Hamburg is another lock at Geesthacht. Most cruises end (or start) at Bad Schandau on the german side of the border and transfer to Prague by bus.
A typical two week cruise on the Elbe starts in Hamburg, includes trips to Berlin and ends in the czech capital Prague. If you decide just to go for one week, you will most likely start in Berlin, board in the Magdeburg area and cruise to Prague. Usually cruises do not go the last few miles from Melnik up the Vltava (unlike -2010), so be prepared for some bussing around.
|Length||1 091 km / 678 mil|
|Length Airline||563 km / 350 mil|
|GPS Source||50° 46′ 32.59″ N, 15° 32′ 10.14″ E|
|Source Elevation||1386 m / 4 547 feet|
|Mouth Elevation||0 m / 0 feet|
|GPS Mouth||53° 55′ 20″ N, 8° 43′ 20″ E|
|Basin Area||148 268 km² / 57 231 mil²|
|Average Discarge||870 m³/s / 30 724 ft³/s|
|Waters Into||Elbe - North Sea|
|Cruise Line||Cruise Name||Days Total|
|Grand Circle Travel||Christmas Markets along the Elbe||11|
|Essence of the Elbe||13|
|Essence of the Elbe - President Cruise||13|
|Vantage Deluxe World Travel||Cruising the Elbe River: Berlin, Dresden & Prague||13|
|Viking River Cruises||Elegant Elbe||10|
|Upstream KM||Station Name||Yesterday Average|
|718.00||Usti nad Labem||246|
|96.01||Wehr Geesthacht UP||719|