Duration: 8 Days
Sail along the Danube River with exciting stops and panoramic views in Austria and Germany. At this time of year, the towns and cities are festively lit and decorated, each in its own particular style and taste. Christmas markets abound, and the strains of carols and aroma of gingerbread fill the air. Embark your ship in Budapest, and sail up the Danube River to Vienna, Austria. Here, Christmas markets are scattered around the city, with the biggest located in front of the city hall. Join a traditional city sightseeing or a guided culinary walk through the Christmas market to taste some of the local traditional specialties.
Glide through the winter wonderland of the Wachau Valley, and in Melk visit Austria’s majestic Benedictine Abbey. You’ll love a guided walk through Passau, with its narrow streets and beautiful patrician houses, and the Christkindlmarkt set against the stunning backdrop of St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Sail further up the Danube River, and you’ll come to the medieval walls of Regensburg, the only German city not bombed during WWII. Your last stop along the Danube River is thousand-year-old Nuremberg, famous for one of the oldest Christmas market in Germany. After guided city sightseeing, be sure to explore the many stalls and try some spicy gingerbread and Glühwein! The perfect ending to a memorable river cruise holiday!
Time for Coffee, and Confections
Flights into Budapest must arrive by 2 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.
With a free day to explore before your cruise, take time to take photographs on the Royal Palace grounds in this treasure trove of historical architecture. Enjoy the warmth and glow of Christmas tradition before boarding your Suite Ship.
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VIENNA (D)
Vienna Waltzes and the Beautiful Blue Danube
Enjoy sailing the Danube, which shares dozens of miles with Hungary and Slovakia. Relax on the to see the rolling landscape and red-rooftops of the Slovakian capital of Bratislava come into view.
DISCOVERY - Enjoy an Austrian Cookie Tasting while sailing to Vienna.
This evening in Vienna, you may choose to join an Optional Excursion to attend a Royal Waltz Concert for an unforgettable evening of music in an elegant hall.
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN VIENNA (B,L,D)
Royal Collections, Amusing Attractions, and Culinary Confections
CLASSIC - Take a Guided Tour of Vienna to see the Imperial Palace complex-the winter residence of the Imperial family, OR:
DISCOVERY - Join a Guided Culinary Tour of Vienna's magical Christmas Advent Markets to sample Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel.
Join a Guided Optional Excursion to Schonbrunn Palace-a Habsburg Empire summer home for 300 years.
Spend free time on your own to enjoy the Christkindlesmarkt, or relax by the fire's glow in a Viennese cafe this evening.
Later, relax on board with live entertainment.
OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO KREMS (B,L,D)
Christmas Magic in the Austria's Wine Country
CLASSIC - Join a Guided Walk to explore this small valley town, seemingly untouched by the new world.
During lunchtime sail through the picturesque Wachau Valley to Melk.
Ornate Architecture and Scenic Splendors
CLASSIC - Take a Guided Tour of Melk's magnificent Benedictine Abbey to marvel at its frescoed ceilings, statues, incredible library, and ornate pipe organ.
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO PASSAU (B,L,D)
Go for Baroque in Passau-Where the Danube, Inn, and Ilz Rivers Meet
CLASSIC - Join a Guided City Walk to learn more about this beautiful "City of Three Rivers"
Alternatively, join a full day Guided Optional Excursion to Salzburg-the city of Mozart and learn how Austrians celebrate Christmas.
Meet your ship back in Passau after your selected activities for sailing.
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO REGENSBURG (B,L,D)
Magical Regensburg-Bavaria's Medieval Miracle
CLASSIC - Join a Guided City Walk and see Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall) and Porta Pretoria-built in 179 AD as the entrance to Castra Regina fortress.
DISCOVERY - Enjoy a Christmas Traditions Lecture on board
DISCOVERY - Later, indulge in a Beer Tasting on board.
This evening, enjoy live entertainment after dinner as you cruise toward Nuremberg.
AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO NUREMBERG (B,L,D)
Living Heritage and History Lessons
CLASSIC - Choose a Guided Sightseeing of Nuremberg-with its medieval architecture, gilded fountain, gothic cathedral, and Kaiserburg Castle, OR;
CLASSIC - Take a Guided Tour of the historic Nuremberg Rally Grounds-used by the Third Reich
Spend free time on your own to browse the spruce stalls of the Christmas Markets of Nuremberg. Sample favorite Bavarian fare-from dozens of bratwurst varieties, gingerbread, mulled blueberry wine, and countless other culinary delights of the Christkindlmarkt.
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG (B,L,D)
Your cruise ends with breakfast this morning. (B)