Town of Laufen on the Salzach river
For centuries, Laufen was the main town of the Rupertiwinkel region as it played a major role in the shipping trade. Coming from Salzburg the Salzach river hits a rising hill area and first deviates southward before continuing in a westerly direction. In prehistoric times, this was probably a settlement of boatmen. Because the Salzach loop narrows the riverbed in a dangerous way ships had to reload the goods further downstream. This is how Laufen became the first stop on the Saalach-Salzach-Inn-Donau waterway.