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Highlights
  • 10 Day River Cruise from Budapest to Bucharest
  • Deluxe 6-night cruise in an outside stateroom with hotel-style beds
  • Remarkable service throughout the cruise

10 Day River Cruise from Budapest to Bucharest

See the best of Eastern Europe on this exhilarating Balkan adventure. Your cruise vacation begins with two overnights in the lively Hungarian capital of Budapest. Board your ship and head south, enjoying guided sightseeing in each city, including inside visits of Kalemegdan Fortress in Belgrade, the eclectic rock formations of Belogradchik, Patriarch’s Church in Veliko Târnovo, Arbanassi’s Ethnographical Museum and Church of the Nativity, and the National Art Museum in Bucharest. Other highlights: an organ concert in Pécs, passing through the dramatic Iron Gates gorge, and visits to the Lepenski Vir archaeological site and Vidin’s medieval fortress. Your journey ends with an overnight in Bucharest, Romania’s vibrant capital and the “Paris of the East.”

Flights & Transport
  • Only ground transport
Rivers & Seas
  • Danube River
Ship Name
  • Passion

535
Avalon Waterways Travel Reviews & Ratings
99% Recommend

4.9 out of 5
Excellent 502 Great 23 Average 5 Disappointing 2 Terrible 3
Value
4.9 Guide
4.9 Activities
4.9 Lodging
4.9 Transportation
4.9 Meals
4.9
Stride Take

TBD

Balkan Discovery – Eastbound

No reviews yet for this trip. Browse other reviews below for Avalon Waterways .

R

Recommends

Avalon comes through January 2015

5.0
  • Value 4.0
  • Guide 4.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
I had heard that Avalon had mostly new ships and that the newest river boats usually had bigger cabins, so decided to give them a try when we sailed the Danube last year. My wife and I were very happy with the choice -- the room had big windows and we enjoyed being able to eat outside, which is something you don't find on some of the older river ships, The shore excursions were good, too, and we didn't have to pay extra for them, which made it more affordable all arouind.
Read more

Operator Avalon Waterways

KMD

Recommends

Cruising with Avalon June 2018

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Just got back from our Rhine River cruise. What an amazing experience! The ship, the Avalon's Imagery II, was absolutely beautiful. Even though it's 2 yrs. old, it looked brand new. The suites were amazing with triple doors, with 2 of them opening to the water. We had never been on a river cruise before, so we were uber excited about this trip!! We flew into Zurich for a few days, then went to Basal to board the ship. Then cruised through the beautiful Rhine to Amsterdam. The crew was very attentive to our every need.....from planning our excursions during the day, to keeping our glasses full every night. ( well, okay, every lunch too! ) Costa, and Dani were our servers throughout the week, they were so fun, our Chef prepared food that was out of this world, and Elena took care of us too, walking around with wine bottles, white, rose', and red. What a great job, right? Our Cruise Director, Valentin was unbelievable. He coordinated everything, everyday. We took bus trips to various places, walking tours of cities, rode a small train to a museum. He made sure that we took water bottles with us when we went, and that we had a glass of juice, and a cool washcloth ready to wipe our faces when we came back. Since they had bikes on board, some people took off for the day. Valentin never missed a beat, and never lost anyone either! If you are thinking of doing a river cruise, do the Rhine, on the Imagery II, with Avalon.
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Operator Avalon Waterways

BR

Does Not Recommend

Beware of forfeitures June 2018

1.0
  • Value 1.0
  • Guide 1.0
  • Activities 1.0
  • Lodging 1.0
  • Transportation 1.0
  • Meals 1.0
We attempted to simply transfer our reservation to a travel agent who can save us money on the rest of the trip. Because Michael and Dave, his supervisor, would not allow the transfer of our deposit, we decided then to cancel our reservation and no to rebook it through the travel agent. So now you will not have the balance of our reservation nor whatever the travel agent would have spent, as well as a potential customer for life. All for $500, good business model.
Read more

Operator Avalon Waterways

AN

Does Not Recommend

Poor UK booking process! June 2018

2.0
  • Value 2.0
  • Guide 2.0
  • Activities 2.0
  • Lodging 2.0
  • Transportation 2.0
  • Meals 2.0
This review only relates to the booking process in the UK and not the actual cruise!
Why is it that Avalon UK customers appear to be the poor relations compared to other parts of the world. We have booked our second river cruise with you in 2 years and feel we have been poorly treated. Our friends in New Zealand and Australia were able to be book their optional excursions online weeks ago, we couldn’t despite the option being available via our portal. We had a long winded process of booking our optional excursions via your head office since you couldn’t fix the problem preventing us booking online! Our friends in Australia received their travel documents a couple of weeks ago, which included their tickets, a booklet about all their excursions, luggage tags and a nice wallet in in which to keep everything. What about us here in the UK, well we received 3 A4 printed sheets! Somehow we feel short changed. We contacted your office to see why and were told that you went paperless last year and others around the world would be doing the same - well we received A4 printed sheets two years ago too, well before you went paperless! Australia and New Zealand are still receiving the document pack described above and did do 2 years ago. Why can’t you treat ALL your customer around the world in the same way and to the same standard? Since we received our A4 print outs we have logged on to our account, but this shows none of the optional excursions that we have booked and paid for via your head office! Hope this is all sorted out by the time we board the ship at the end of June and that you have notified them about our excursions!
Read more

Operator Avalon Waterways

PE

Recommends

Great service at Avalon at Shelton CT. February 2018

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
I had the misfortune of dropping my cell phone down the garbage chute. Needless to say I was distraught. I went to the office and Pete from maintenance was there for me within 5minutes. I felt like a complete idiot for dropping my cell phone in the chute. Pete was so supportive and willing to help. He was like superman to me. I'll never forget his professional and kind approach. He retrieved my phone successfully. Truly grateful. Thanks Pete, Five Stars for you
Read more

Operator Avalon Waterways

Itinerary

Day 1 : Arrive in Budapest, Hungary

Welcome to Budapest, Hungary’s lively capital spanning the banks of the Danube. The remainder of the day is free to start exploring Eastern Europe’s most cosmopolitan metropolis.

Day 2 : Budapest

Meals : Breakfast

Whether you’re seeing the sights, shopping for handcrafted embroidery or Herend porcelain, or basking in the coffee house culture over a rich cream cake in the renowned Gerbeaud Café, Budapest’s unique energy is positively palatable. On your included GUIDED TOUR of the city, the massive hilltop castle complex is a major sight with its remarkable Fishermen’s Bastion and 11th-century Matthias Church, the coronation spot of several Hungarian monarchs. Be sure to take note of the city’s eight bridges—many famous sights in and of themselves—which connect ancient Buda on the right bank with Pest on the left. You may even want to walk across Chain Bridge, a symbol of Budapest built in 1849. This afternoon is free. Perhaps visit St. Stephen’s Basilica for marvelous city views from its viewing platform, or stroll along Váci utca, the main shopping street.

Day 3 : Budapest (Embarkation)

Meals : Breakfast and Dinner

This morning you can explore this vibrant city at your own pace. Shop at the Great Market Hall and purchase paprika or embroidery at one of its 180 vendor stalls, or wander around the Royal Palace grounds. This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at a welcome reception.

Day 4 : Mohács. Excursion to Pécs

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

This morning, enjoy some leisurely cruising before arriving in Mohács, the last stop in Hungary. After lunch, an included excursion takes you to Pécs. Established by the Romans in the 2nd century, this was a flourishing and important town for Christianity by the 4th century. These early Christians left behind many underground burial chambers with memorial chapels above ground. With a Local Guide, visit the UNDERGROUND TOMBS—now part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site—many of which have splendidly decorated murals with Christian themes. Later, enjoy an ORGAN CONCERT. Pécs is also a rich showcase of Turkish architecture and home to Turkish mosques, striking churches, and an enjoyable atmosphere around its restaurants and cafés.

Day 5 : Belgrade, Serbia

Meals : B , L , D

Before arriving in Belgrade this afternoon, attend a fascinating ONBOARD LECTURE on the Balkans to better help you understand this region of Europe. One of the oldest cities in Europe, the capital of Serbia is situated at the confluence of the Danube and Sava Rivers. A Local Guide will be proud to show you its main sights, including St. Sava, the world’s largest orthodox church. Also visit the city’s principal landmark, KALEMEGDAN FORTRESS, which showcases the history of Belgrade. Built in stages between the 1st and 18th centuries, the fortress witnessed many battles and observed the courage of those trying to defend the city from conquerors. The surrounding park is the most beautiful and largest park in Belgrade. In your free time, be sure to check out the city’s lively pedestrian area and charming outdoor cafés.

Day 6 : Excursion to Lepenski Vir–Iron Gates

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

After breakfast, dock at Donji Milanovac, where a short drive takes you to the impressive LEPENSKI VIR EXHIBITION CENTER, which houses area archaeological artifacts and from where you have unique views of the Danube Gorge. Return to your ship before lunch, then cruise what must surely be the most spectacular scenery of the dramatic IRON GATES gorge, a narrow and formerly very dangerous passage dividing Europe’s Alps in the northwest from the Carpathians in the southeast and forming a natural border between Serbia and Romania.

Day 7 : Vidin, Bulgaria. Excursion to Belogradchik

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Vidin is an important Danube port in northwestern Bulgaria. Its medieval FORTRESS, known as “Baba Vidin,” is the town’s primary landmark. It served as Vidin’s main defensive installation during the course of the Middle Ages and is the only entirely preserved medieval fortress in the country. It is now a fortress museum and has been restored to its former appearance. In the afternoon, drive to nearby Belogradchik to view the eclectic group of ROCK FORMATIONS on the western slopes of the Balkan Mountains. Sculpted by natural elements for more than 200 million years and with a variety of sizes and shapes, the Belogradchik Rocks are spectacular! )

Day 8 : Svistov–Excursion to Veliko Târnovo & Arbanassi–Rousse

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

A comfortable ride from the river port of Svistov is the ancient Bulgarian capital of Veliko Târnovo. Situated on three hills surrounding the Yantra River, the city was a natural fortress with ancient stone houses clinging to the steep slopes. One of the oldest towns in Bulgaria (dating back to 4300 BC), the oldest part is Tsarevets Hill, home of the Royal Fortress, palaces, and the PATRIARCH’S CHURCH. With your Local Guide, discover this town that played an important role in Bulgaria’s history. Next, journey to Arbanassi, founded in the 15th century, and best known for its Bulgarian Revival architecture and ETHNOGRAPHICAL MUSEUM, a 400-year-old house preserved as a museum. Visit the CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY, one of the town’s oldest churches, and see its outstanding collection of frescoes. Rejoin your ship in Rousse, Bulgaria’s largest inland port. If you don’t wish to participate in the full-day excursion, stay on board, relax, and join a GUIDED TOUR of Rousse in the afternoon.

Day 9 : Oltenita, Romania (Disembarkation)–Bucharest

Meals : Breakfast   

Bucharest, Romania’s lively capital, is only a short drive from Oltenita. Its wide, tree-lined boulevards and Arc de Triomphe—built in 1922 to honor the bravery of Romanian soldiers who fought in WWI—have gained it the name “Paris of the East.” Much recent history has taken place in the city. During the INCLUDED TOUR this afternoon, see the impressive Parliament Building, the second-largest building in the world after the Pentagon, and the Royal Palace Square, the scene of riots in 1989, which led to the collapse of the communist dictatorship. The former Royal Palace now houses the NATIONAL ART MUSEUM, which includes over 100,000 works of Romanian and European art from the 15th to the 20th centuries. In your free time, discover this interesting city even further. Stroll down Calea Victoriei, “Victory Avenue,” Bucharest’s most historic and alluring street. Initially built in 1692, today it is lined with shops, museums, churches, restaurants, cafés, and fine houses.

Day 10 : Bucharest

Meals : Breakfast

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Dates & Pricing

Price From

$ 3,580

Price Per Day:

$ 358 per person
 
  • Deposit Price: $ 250

Port charges:

$126

Extra nights per person in Budapest:

in single room from $190 to $500, in twin room from $110 to $255

Extra nights per person in Bucharest:

in single room from $145 to $170, in twin room from $80 to $92

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.
Details
Ship Name

Passion

Ship Description

Yet another beautiful Suite Ship graces the rivers of Europe in 2016. The Avalon Passion welcomes passengers to their home-away-from-home with two full decks of Panorama Suites, featuring Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows that transform into a unique Open-Air Balcony. With 200 square feet, Panorama Suites are more than 30% larger than industry standard and ideal for stretching out and relaxing-or even throwing a private cocktail party for up to six adults in the spacious sitting area. On board, passengers enjoy free Wi-Fi access, complimentary computer use at the Internet Corner, a Fitness Center with state-of-the-art equipment, a hair salon, elevator, and an expansive Sky Deck with shade system, premium lounge chairs, whirlpool, deck games, and the delightful Sky Bistro for al fresco lunches of light grill fare.

Deck & Cabin Plans

Trip Includes
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
Trip Excludes
  • International Flights
  • Passport and Visa Charges
  • Personal Expenses
Optional Activities

The following list of optional excursions and on-board packages are examples only for this vacation. These optional excursions might or might not be offered. Whether it's a special dinner, a local show or a special behind-the-scenes glimpse into an historical site, optional excursions are a wonderful way to enrich your vacation even further. Plus, they give you flexibility. We include the must-see sites and experiences, and we also understand that people take interest in different activities and may want to craft a more personal vacation by hand-picking optional excursions that appeal to them.

We know that many times travelers celebrate special occasions on vacation and you can now pre-purchase celebration packages before your cruise departure. We offer special birthday, anniversary and wedding vow packages. These packages include all the elements you need to celebrate with family & friends.

Availability of optional excursions is subject to sufficient participation, weather conditions, seasonal suitability, days of operation, group interests, and general feasibility for your vacation. The approximate value listed gives you a good, general idea of what you can expect to pay but may vary once you are on your vacation. Some information provided might be in a foreign currency; to get an estimated price, use a currency converter for exchange rate information (pricing may vary at the time of booking).

Once you have booked your vacation, Avalon Waterways provides the ability to pre-purchase excursions and packages, register for your cruise and provide emergency contact information online.

Budapest:

Gold & Glamorous: "Belle Epoques" Of Budapest

Hungarian Countryside Experience With Wine Tasting

Hungarian Food And Wine Pairing Dinner

Belgrade:

Dinner At Belgrade's Skadarlija District

Serbian Countryside

Bucharest:

The Romanian Parliament - The Second Largest Building On Earth

Meals Included:

9 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches and 6 Dinners

Flights & Transport
Only ground transport
Group Size:
Standard Group
Accomodations

InterContinental Budapest

Few would argue the InterContinental Budapest is in the city's best location: right on the Danube across from Castle Hill and the Royal Palace. With the Chain Bridge and the Parliament just steps away, there's no shortage of superb sightseeing opportunities. The Váci Utca shopping street, Central Market Hall and the Gellért Baths are also nearby.

Athenee Palace Hilton

Explore Bucharest from the glorious Athenee Palace Hilton Bucharest hotel, one of the city's most sophisticated and prestigious landmarks. The hotel is conveniently located in the heart of the city and enjoys views of Revolution Square and is close to Bucharest's many local attractions.

Start City
Budapest
End City
Bucharest
Cancellation Policy:

If a booking cancellation is received by Avalon prior to the final payment date of your vacation, your non-refundable land deposit and Travel Protection payments will be retained in addition to your Flex-Air deposit, Instant Purchase Air payment and service fee, and/or intra-vacation air deposit. For individual reservations, the following per person cancellation fees apply. Total price does not include discounts, promotions, or special incentives. (For group reservations, refer to the Group Policy.)

Standard Cancellation Fees:

  • 90-60 days prior to commencement of services: 35% of total price* plus Travel Protection payments
  • 59-30 days prior to commencement of services: 50% of total price* plus Travel Protection payments
  • 29-1 days prior to commencement of services: 80% of total price* plus Travel Protection payments
  • On departure day and later: 100% of total price* plus Travel Protection payments

Trip ID#: BalDisAva

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