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Jewels of Central Europe - Cruise Only Eastbound tour
Bamberg Budapest Jewels of Central Europe - Cruise Only Eastbound Trip

Jewels of Central Europe - Cruise Only Eastbound

Avalon Waterways
4.8 . Excellent
98%
Travel Style: A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level: Minimal walking. Motor vehicles for all major parts of trip. Wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Most cruises. Very Easy
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
15 days
From: $ 5,549 $ 370 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights

  • Welcome to Luxembourg! onboard welcome reception
  • Choice of guided city sightseeing or “Roman Trier” sightseeing, see the Porta Nigra
  • Guided walk; wine tasting
  • Cruise through the Rhine Gorge; visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum in Rüdesheim; enjoy a special treat
  • Guided walk
  • Guided sightseeing, visit the Bishop’s Residenz
  • Guided sightseeing, see the Old Town Hall
  • Guided sightseeing, see the Marienplatz
  • Choice of guided sightseeing or Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour
  • Guided walk; enjoy a snack at the Historische Wurstküche; beer tasting
  • Guided walk
  • Guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey in Melk
  • Guided sightseeing
  • Guided sightseeing, see Fishermen’s Bastion and Heroes’ Square
  • On this remarkable Europe river cruise vacation, you’ll sail along the Moselle, Rhine, Main, and Danube Rivers and through the dramatic Rhine Gorge and Main Danube Canal
  • Visit the most intriguing cities of Germany and Austria along the way, and end in Budapest—Hungary’s vibrant capital

Short Description

On this remarkable Europe river cruise vacation, you’ll sail along the Moselle, Rhine, Main, and Danube Rivers and through the dramatic Rhine Gorge and Main Danube Canal. Visit the most intriguing cities of Germany and Austria along the way, and end in Budapest—Hungary’s vibrant capital.

Your first stop is Trier, Germany—believed to be even older than Rome—and many remnants can still be found, such as imperial baths. Cruise the wide, peaceful curves of the Moselle Valley, famous for its picturesque scenery. The wine village of Bernkastel, surrounded by Germany’s largest expanse of vineyards, will fascinate you with its narrow streets and half-timbered houses still standing from the Middle Ages. Continue your European river cruise through the dramatic Rhine Gorge, considered the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine River. See the rock of the Lorelei and ancient castles standing majestically on cliffs 400 feet above the water. Stop in Rüdesheim, a quintessential Rhine Valley wine town, before proceeding into the Main River. Visit the magnificent Bishop’s Residenz in Würzburg and marvel at medieval Bamberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Enjoy a guided visit of historic Nuremberg and an excursion to Bavaria’s capital, Munich. Along the Danube River is Regensburg, Germany, one of Europe’s best preserved medieval cities, where you can taste some of Germany’s famous beers! Visit Passau with its narrow, winding cobblestone streets, and Melk’s magnificent 11th-century Benedictine Abbey, before arriving in Vienna, the “City of Music” that inspired the genius of Beethoven, Mozart, and Strauss.

There are countless opportunities to be swept away on this fascinating river cruise, and it doesn’t end until you’ve experienced the unique energy of Budapest. A local expert will show you the famous sights, and with free time, perhaps walk across the Chain Bridge and bask in the coffee house culture with a rich cream cake in the renowned Gerbeaud Café.

These vessels are smaller than most ocean cruisers, limiting which amenties are available. Passenger counts can vary. One of the biggest advantages of a river cruise is the ability to dock at smaller ports and local villages.
Trip Type River Cruise
Array
Itinerary Focus N/A
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport N/A
Start City Arrive in Remich
End City Budapest (Disembarkation)
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Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Remich, Luxembourg (Embarkation). This afternoon board your river cruise vessel and before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception. The Moselle River is some 312 miles long, rising in the Vosges Mountains of northeastern France and entering Germany at Trier. (D)

Day 2

Trier, Germany. At the head of the Moselle Valley is Trier, Germany’s oldest city. Some say Trier is even older than Rome and was populated over a thousand years before the Romans arrived. Many Roman remains have survived, including a 20,000-seat amphitheater; the Porta Nigra, the only surviving fortified gate from the original Roman settlement, which still gives access to the town’s center; imperial baths; and the Roman Bridge, Germany’s oldest bridge, with stone pilings dating from 144-152 AD—all evidence of this once-grand Roman city. Choose from an included GUIDED CITY SIGHTSEEING or the more history-focused “ROMAN TRIER” guided tour. As you cruise the wide, peaceful curves of the Moselle River, it becomes obvious why the Moselle Valley is famous for its picturesque scenery, and that this is an important wine-growing region. (B,L,D)

Day 3

Bernkastel. In the middle of the Moselle region is the charming wine village of Bernkastel with its fascinating narrow streets and half-timbered houses that have stood since the Middle Ages. Enjoy a GUIDED WALK that includes the beautiful marketplace with its renaissance-style Town Hall—built in 1608—and the “pointed house,” built in 1416. Wine growers in this area look after Germany’s largest expanse of vineyards, the most celebrated of the vintages being the Bernkasteler Doktor. During your free time this afternoon you might like to visit the Moselle Wine Museum. This evening enjoy a TASTING of some of these well-loved German wines. (B,L,D)

Day 4

Rhine Gorge–Rüdesheim. This morning, sail through the dramatic RHINE GORGE, the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine. Here, ancient castles stand sentry on lofty cliffs rising 400 feet above the waters. Cruise past the legendary rock of the Lorelei, where echoes of enchanted siren song lured unwitting sailors to their doom. In Rüdesheim, the quintessential Rhine Valley wine town, visit SIEGFRIED’S MECHANICAL MUSICAL INSTRUMENT MUSEUM, where you’ll see and hear a large collection of self-playing calliopes, mechanical violins, and music boxes from the 18th to the early 20th centuries. Enjoy a SPECIAL TREAT, then there’s free time to pick up some souvenirs on the narrow, cobblestoned Drosselgasse, where colorful flowers, open-air wine gardens, and live music add to the festive atmosphere. (B,L,D)

Day 5

Main River Village. On the banks of the Main River you find cultural gems of small towns, many of them tucked away behind defensive walls and towered gates. With half-timbered houses, narrow streets, and medieval town centers, these picturesque Bavarian villages are a photographer's delight. Join your Local Guide to experience one of these towns on a GUIDED WALK. (B,L,D)

Day 6

Würzburg. Relax on board this morning as you cruise the Main River. This afternoon, arrive in Würzburg. Surrounded by verdant hillside vineyards, Würzburg, the “Pearl of the Romantic Road,” makes an immediate impression with imposing Fortress Marienberg perched above town and the 15th-century Alte Mainbrücke (Old Main Bridge). On your GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR, visit the magnificent baroque BISHOP’S RESIDENZ, home to the largest ceiling fresco ever painted. Then, there’s time to relax, do some shopping, or stop in a Konditorei for a mouth-watering pastry and a cup of coffee—a German afternoon tradition. (B,L,D)

Day 7

Bamberg. Enjoy another pleasant morning of sailing before you arrive in medieval Bamberg in the early afternoon. The town is the former residence of one of Germany’s most powerful imperial dynasties and today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your included GUIDED WALK takes in its historic center, with the great 13th-century Romanesque cathedral and the fascinating Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall)—built on an island in the middle of the Regnitz River when the bishop refused to give the townspeople land for a town hall! (B,L,D)

Day 8

Nuremberg. Excursion to Munich. Early this morning, arrive in Nuremberg and after breakfast, drive to Munich, the capital of Bavaria. With its historical museums, splendid English Garden, traditional cafés, and delightful shops, Munich has plenty to see and do. A GUIDED TOUR will show you the highlights of this fascinating city, including Nymphenburg Palace, summer residence of the Bavarian monarchs; MARIENPLATZ with its Old and New Town Halls; and the gothic Frauenkirche, a prominent landmark for Munich. Then, enjoy time on your own in this vibrant city. Watch the famous Glockenspiel, which recreates a royal wedding from the 16th century; linger at an outdoor café; visit St. Peter’s, the oldest church in town; or maybe relax alongside the locals at one of the many Biergärten or breweries to sample one of the Bavarian beer specialties. Return to your ship in the afternoon. (B,D)

Day 9

Nuremberg. Although 90% of Nuremberg’s Old Town suffered extensive damage during WWII, much of it has been restored to the glory it once knew as the unofficial capital of the Holy Roman Empire. This morning, choose a GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR and marvel at this thousand-year-old city’s medieval fortifications, extraordinary gothic churches, and the Kaiserburg (Imperial Castle), or join a more specialized “NUREMBERG RALLY GROUNDS” tour. (B,L,D)

Day 10

Regensburg. Arrive in Regensburg today. Dating back to the time of the Celts around 500 BC, Regensburg is one of Germany’s best-preserved medieval cities. Established during the Holy Roman Empire and the only German city not bombed during WWII, Regensburg has at least 1,300 listed buildings of “historic interest.” Architectural highlights of your GUIDED WALK include the Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall), built in the 13th century, and Porta Pretoria, gates to an ancient Roman fort built in 179 AD. Wander through the city’s lanes and alleys to discover the many mansions with high towers. Wealthy families built these towers to emphasize their status and wealth during the Middle Ages, and many still remain today. Walk across the 12th-century Steinerne Brücke (Stone Bridge), the oldest of its kind in Germany. Grab a beer and enjoy an included SNACK at the Historische Wurstküche (Old Sausage Kitchen), one of Germany’s oldest restaurants. Here—where the locals congregate—feel the vibrant atmosphere and take in the remarkable views along the river. Before dinner, we’ll introduce you to some of Germany’s FAMOUS BEERS! (B,L,D)

Day 11

Passau. This morning, dock in Passau. Uniquely located where the Inn, Ilz, and Danube Rivers converge, Passau is a maze of narrow cobblestone streets lined with beautiful patrician houses and dominated by St. Stephen’s Cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian baroque architecture. Take in the highlights on the included GUIDED WALK. Alternatively, choose from several full-day optional excursions while your ship continues to sail into Austria. Rejoin your vessel in the late afternoon. (B,L,D)

Day 12

Melk, Austria–Vienna. This morning, enjoy a GUIDED VISIT of Melk’s magnificent 11th-century BENEDICTINE ABBEY, one of Europe’s largest monasteries. The abbey houses an ornate library with over 80,000 printed books and 2,000 manuscripts. Words cannot describe the splendor of the church with its frescoed ceilings, stunning high altar, marble statues, and 210-foot-high cupola. Then, cruise through the picturesque Wachau Valley. Pass the magnificent baroque Stiftskirche with its blue façade, the landmark of Dürnstein, arriving in Vienna this evening. Known as the “City of Music,” it inspired the creative genius of Mozart, Beethoven, and Strauss. An optional concert is available tonight. (B,L,D)

Day 13

Vienna. Once the center of the mighty Habsburg Empire, Austria’s magical capital on the blue Danube is a showcase of gilded architecture. This is home to the lavish Hofburg Imperial Palace complex with its Vienna Boys’ Choir and dazzling Lipizzaner stallions; the neo-renaissance Vienna Opera House; and awe-inspiring St. Stephen’s Cathedral—plus, countless other sights shown to you by your Local Guide during your included CITY TOUR. Shop in the delightful pedestrian Kärntnerstrasse, and be sure to take a break and enjoy a piece of decadent Sachertorte or Apfelstrudel in one of the classic Viennese coffee houses, historic institutions that helped shape Viennese culture! In the late afternoon, leave Vienna for Budapest. (B,L,D)

Day 14

Budapest, Hungary. Spanning the banks of the Danube, Budapest is one of Eastern Europe’s liveliest cities. 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 GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR, see Heroes Square as well as the massive hilltop castle complex 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, built in 1849 and a symbol of Budapest. Perhaps visit St. Stephen’s Basilica; shop at the Great Market Hall and purchase paprika at one of its 180 vendor stalls; wander around the Royal Palace grounds; or stroll along Váci utca, the main shopping street. (B,L,D)

Day 15

Budapest (Disembarkation). Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)

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Price Per Day: $ 370 per day
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1,268 Avalon Waterways Travel Reviews & Ratings

98%
4.8 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 1,130
Great 88
Average 30
Disappointing 9
Terrible 11
Value
4.8
Guide
4.8
Activities
4.8
Lodging
4.8
Transportation
4.8
Meals
4.8

Jewels of Central Europe - Cruise Only Eastbound

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Company Reviews

Avalon transport to hotel

1.0
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Value1.0
Guide1.0
Activities1.0
Lodging1.0
Transportation1.0
Meals1.0
We came at the airport in amsterdam, the driver came to pick us up in a FORD station car, What a Joke. A small simple car. We expect a Mercedes, BMW or Audi, at least a great German car. The driver was friendly, but how Can they send a bad old car like that ? I could better take a Tesla outside the airport
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Cancelled Cruise

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
We had booked a Danube River Cruise for April 2019 and we had to cancel due to a family emergency. Our travel agent, Cruise Planners in Charleston and Avalon were absolutely FABULOUS about helping us cancel our reservation and were very understanding and sympathetic to our issue.

If we plan another trip in the future, I will not hesitate to use both companies again.
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Thing of a Danube cruise next May...but…

1.0
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Thing of a Danube cruise next May...but VERY concerned now with the reports of low level water and big problems...any advice about a May cruise?

Jill Bondarchuk Does not care about terrible experience never use avalon

1.0
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Jill Bondarchuk Who is in charge of Avalon waterways did not seem to care about are terrible experience with Avalon romantic reign
Cruise the most important day of the cruise we were crammed on a tour boat hat was way over crowded we could not see any romantic castles
It was terrible I saved up most my life for this and they just did not care I am a hard working man and very rarely get upset but I will not recommend cruise to anyone they seem to not care and for the cost of the cruise which is not cheap gave us 200.00 off for lifetime saving for this special moment got back standard corporate letter from Jill bondarchuck basically saying to bad very disappointed at the uncaring
Of ruining trip of lifetime
Jeff federoff
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Failure to take responsibility for not delivering on promises

1.0
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Had our trip gone according to plan I have no doubt I would be giving Avalon five stars. The five days we cruised, out of fifteen booked, was exceptional. Whilst Avalon cannot be blamed for poor water conditions, they can be blamed for failing to inform us in time to cancel the trip, on failing to offer reasonable compensation, and on exceptionally poor communications from their customer service area.

In short:
We cruised for 5 days out of the advertised 15.
We cruised through part of one country, rather than the advertised five countries.
We were put up in hotels for six nights. Meals, where provided by the hotel at all, were ordinary, at best.
We spent many hours being driven point to point on buses, requiring early morning starts and much packing and repacking. We saw very little in the way of scenery outside of the five days of cruising, spending most of the time on motorways.

The amount of compensation offered was totally inadequate being a small proportion of the total cruise-only cost (nothing for the cost of airfares). When challenged, Avalon just says that is their policy. My requests for a review by a more senior representative seems to have been ignored.

Whilst other cruise companies have suffered similar problems, most seem to be able to transfer passengers relatively small distances to another ship. I suspect this is because most have more ships available.

By all means use Avalon if you can be certain the river conditions will allow one continuous journey - the ship was great, as were the staff on the ship. However where there is any likelihood of problems, it appears Avalon is least likely to be able to minimise the disruption and will not offer fair and reasonable compensation when things go wrong.
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The most enjoyable cruise I have ever…

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
The most enjoyable cruise I have ever been on!

Details

Optional Activities

WRB|Take this cruise with land stays

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.


Budapest
Hungary
Apaczai Csere Janos utca 12-14

Trip ID#:

AVALON-WRB0

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