Certified "Cultural Route of the Council of Europe" in 2005
The VIA REGIA is the oldest and longest road linking Eastern and Western Europe. Evidence shows that the VIA REGIA corridor, which is situated south of the ice cap and north of the middle mountainous zone, was the favourite region of passage of migrating tribes as far back as the Stone Age. Today, the route connects ten European countries and has a length of 4500 km in its modern form, as European Development Corridor III.
The old VIA REGIA. also called the "Royal Road" was part of the most important road system of the Early Middle Ages. With the passage of time, this road has continually changed, adapting to new eras, while continuously preserving its crucial economic significance for interregional trade. This lengthy historical background is reflected by a rich heritage, ranging from the architectural heritage to intangible traditions that have shaped the European continent.
The VIA REGIA is a road link from pre-trail times. That means the traditional infrastructure of the route is synonymous with short distances travelled at a slow cruising speed. The traveller can espouse the principle of "deceleration" as a basis for slowly enjoying this route across Europe's cultural space, from east to west or vice versa. Many different travel options are available, from traditional pilgrimages to train journeys. A large number of cultural activities and events are also organised around the concept of this essential artery for our continent!
Council of Europe values
Over the last 2000 years, merchants, soldiers, kings, pilgrims, migrants, and different kinds of travellers, have left their marks on the VIA REGIA. This route recounts a history of events that are of European significance, promoting knowledge and understanding of European history and cultural identity.