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Rathaus in Vienna

Iconic Christmas Markets

Example 13 Day Cruise aboard MS Amaviola
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Travel back through centuries as you walk along cobblestone streets through grand cities and historic towns bedecked with twinkling Christmas trees and lined with wooden huts gleaming with handcrafted treasures. Iconic Christmas Markets are plentiful and are on full display for your pleasure: Budapest’s Vörösmarty Square, where all products sold in the market are guaranteed as traditionally handmade; Vienna with its impressive Christmas Markets that seem to majestically appear around every corner; Nuremberg’s festive Christkindlesmarkt, the largest and oldest Christmas Market in Germany; and Regensburg’s Christmas Market at Thurn and Taxis Castle, considered one of Bavaria’s most beautiful and romantic—along with many others throughout your journey—are yours to explore.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Budapest, Hungary
Day 2 : Budapest
Day 3 : Budapest | Embark
Day 4 : Budapest
Day 5 : Vienna, Austria
Day 6 : Melk
Day 7 : Passau, Germany
Day 8 : Regensburg
Day 9 : Nuremberg
Day 10 : Nuremberg | Disembark | Prague, Czech Republic
Day 11 : Prague
Day 12 : Prague
Day 13 : Depart Prague

Highlights

  • Take an illuminations cruise around Budapest’s famed Parliament building
  • Visit Vörösmarty Square, the oldest, richest and the most spectacular of all the Christmas markets in Budapest. 
  • Explore the market at Schönbrunn Palace with a giant sparkling Christmas tree
  • Tour Melk Abbey, one of Europe’s most revered Baroque monasteries

Ship

MS Amaviola

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Rathaus in Vienna Nuremberg Frankfurt Christmas Market Hungary Evening in Vienna, Austria Prague City and the Charles Bridge at Sunset Vienna Basel at Christmas, Switzerland

Day 1 Budapest, Hungary

Arrive in Budapest and transfer to your hotel.

Day 2 Budapest

Once the co-capital of the Austro-Hungarian empire (along with Vienna), Budapest is one of Europe’s most regal and storied cities—and many of its most iconic sights can be seen right off the banks of the Danube. Today’s tour takes you to another side of Budapest to the Jewish Quarter, where there are some real treasures. The Great Synagogue, the largest Synagogue in Europe and the second largest in the world, located in Dohány Street represents the beating heart of this quarter. Other prominent attractions include the Holocaust Memorial, a weeping willow tree with the names of Hungarian Jews killed during the Holocaust inscribed on each leaf; and the Shoes on the Danube, a memorial to the Budapest Jews who were shot by Arrow Cross militiamen between 1944 and 1945. 

Day 3 Budapest | Embark

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Dinner
Check out of your hotel to board your luxurious ship. During the evening, be treated to a special illuminations cruise around Budapest’s famed Parliament building as at night, the city virtually glitters as these landmarks are awash in lights. 

Day 4 Budapest

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Home to several UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the Buda Castle quarter in Castle Hill and Heroes’ Square, Budapest offers an unmatched combination of culture, tradition and even a secret labyrinth of caves and caverns under the city. Your city tour begins with a visit to the vibrant Great Market Hall brimming with vendors selling everything from food to souvenirs. The remainder of this tour takes you to both the Buda (hilly) and the Pest (flat) sides of the river. Afterwards, you’ll visit Vörösmarty Square, the oldest, richest and the most spectacular of all the Christmas markets in Budapest. 

Day 5 Vienna, Austria

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The “City of Waltzes” offers a treasure trove of gems just waiting to be discovered. Join a tour showcasing its regal splendors, such as the majestic Opera House and the former Imperial Palace of the Habsburgs before concluding in Vienna’s historic city center. Afterwards, you'll visit the Rathaus (Town Hall) Christmas Market. If you prefer a more active adventure, then join a guided bike ride along the Danube. During the afternoon, visit the Karlsplatz (Artisans) Christmas Market, a local favorite, and the market at Schönbrunn Palace with a giant sparkling Christmas tree. Cap the day off with "Vienna by Night" Christmas Markets at the beautifully decorated Maria Theresaplatz Christmas Market, set amongst the world-renowned sights of Vienna's majestic Ringstrasse, and at the illuminated Rathaus, Vienna’s largest Christmas Market. 

Day 6 Melk

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
High on a rocky outcrop lies the Melk Abbey, one of Europe’s most revered Baroque monasteries. Visit this magnificent Benedictine Abbey, which now houses a museum chronicling its history and a famous library with countless medieval manuscripts. Alternatively, go on a guided bike ride along the Danube and through the scenic Strudengau Valley. 

Day 7 Passau, Germany

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Join a walking tour of this 2,000-year-old city, noted for its Gothic and Italian Baroque architecture and St. Stephen’s. Go in search of Bavarian-style crafts at the Christmas Market. Alternatively, you can travel through the serene Austrian Alps to Salzburg, birthplace of Mozart. Your full-day excursion in Salzburg includes a walking tour of the UNESCO-designated Old Town, its magnificent cathedral and Christmas Market, which is a feast for the senses. For the active adventurer, join a guided bike tour along the Danube. 

Day 8 Regensburg

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Regensburg is one of Germany’s best preserved medieval cities, as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Join a guided walking tour showcasing the city’s architectural highlights, including the Old Town Hall and the Porta Praetoria before visiting the Old Town Christmas Market. As an alternate option, sample some of Bavaria’s specialties—beer, sausage and pretzels. Or bike to Walhalla where you will see the neo- Classical white marble temple inspired by the Parthenon in Athens. Later in the day, you’ll be treated to one of Bavaria’s most beautiful and romantic Christmas Markets at Thurn and Taxis Castle, where you can watch artisansmake their unique arts and crafts. 

Day 9 Nuremberg

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Enjoy a scenic morning cruise as the ship crosses the Continental Divide via the Main- Danube Canal to Nuremberg. Join a city tour of WWII highlights and then walk through Nuremberg’s cobblestone streets to the Imperial castle and 900-year-old city ramparts. Alternatively, you can taste your way through the city with a Franconian specialties tour, which introduces you to Bratwurst, Rotbier (red beer) and Lebkuchen (gingerbread). Later, you can visit Nuremberg’s Christkindlesmarkt (Christmas Market), one of the world’s largest and most famous Christmas Markets. Stroll along as the aroma of mulled wine and gingerbread fill the air and browse through over 100 red and white canvas-topped booths offering an assortment of unique treasures, toys and seasonal goodies. 

Day 10 Nuremberg | Disembark | Prague, Czech Republic

Disembark the ship and board a motorcoach to Prague. En route, you’ll enjoy some more time exploring another one of Nuremberg’s colorful Christmas Markets. Later you will take a scenic drive through the Bohemian countryside as you transfer to Prague, and check-in to your hotel. 

Day 11 Prague

The fairytale city of Prague always enchants, but it really sparkles even more during the holiday season. Prague offers a collection of Art Nouveau, Baroque, Renaissance and Gothic architecture, which you’ll get to see on your tour. You will see Rudolfinum, the National Museum, Wenceslas Square and the Dancing House, as well as visit 1,000-year-old Prague Castle and St. Vitus before walking over the romantic Charles Bridge to the Old Market Square, where you will find the capital’s famous Astronomical Clock, Tyn Church and the statue of Jan Husek. You will then have free time to explore Prague’s renowned Christmas Markets -in the Old Town Square. (B)

Day 12 Prague

Beer has a long and illustrious history in the Czech Republic with the first brewery known to have existed in 993. Pilsner Urquell was created in 1842, being the first pilsner ever made, whilst Budweiser came into being in the city of Budweis. Beer is a core part of the country’s national identity, so much so the Czechs are the biggest consumers of beer in the world. The country is home to more than 100 breweries with a combination of big names and micro establishments offering a huge range of styles, so join a Czech beer tasting and discover for yourself what makes the Czech’s beer some of the very best in the world. 

Day 13 Depart Prague

  • 1 Breakfast
Bid farewell to Prague and you prepare for your flight home. 

MS Amaviola

Budapest

Prague

Per person starting at
$3,819
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Cat.E
Piano Deck Fixed Windows, 160 sq. ft.
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Cat.D
Piano Deck Fixed Windows, 160 sq. ft.
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Cat.CB
Violin Deck French Balcony, 170 sq. ft.
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Cat.CA
Violin & Cello Deck French Balcony, 170 sq. ft.
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Cat.BB
Cello Deck French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 210 sq. ft.
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Cat.BA
Violin Deck French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 210 sq. ft.
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Cat.AB
Cello Deck French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 235 sq. ft.
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Cat.AA
Violin Deck French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 235 sq. ft.
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Suite
Violin Deck French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 350 sq. ft.

Notes

Single supplement is 50%, except for Suites which are 100%.

Included Features:
- 7 nights luxury accommodation in an outside stateroom (most with twin balconies)
- Computer for internet access
- Entertainment-On-Demand in all staterooms featuring free high-speed internet access, movies, a music library and English language TV stations
- Mini-fridge, desk and sitting area
- Bottled water replenished daily
- Wellness Program with a dedicated Wellness Host leading various exercise classes as well as discussions on healthy eating and relaxation techniques, both on board and on shore.
- Personalized service from a highly trained Cruise Manager during both cruise and land programs
- Internet and Wi-Fi access
- Sun deck pool with swim-up bar and walking track
- Fitness room, massage services and hair salon
- Main Lounge with panoramic views and bar
- Daily entertainment including cultural performances
- All onboard dining in a variety of venues
- Regionally inspired cuisine made with locally sourced ingredients
- The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant
- Welcome Cocktail, Welcome Dinner, La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Dinner, Captain's Cocktail and Gala Dinner
- La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs exclusive dining experience
- Unlimited fine wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
- Unlimited sparkling wine and fresh juice with breakfast
- Sip & Sail Daily Cocktail Hour with complimentary wine, beer, spirits and soft drinks
- Tapas, sandwiches, snacks and refreshments served daily in the Main Lounge
- Immersive tours in every destination
- Gentle, regular, active and late-riser tour options
- Bike tours and hikes
- Special Interest Tours
- Knowledgeable guides
- Personal headset for easy exploration
- Airport transfers with purchase of air from the expedition company
- Land Program
- 2 nights hotel in Budapest at the Sofitel BudapestChain Bridge (or similar), including tour and dailybreakfast
- Transfer from ship in Nuremberg to Pilzen withhighlights tour and then to Prague
- 3 nights hotel in Prague at the Old Town Hilton(or similar), including city tour, Christmas Markets,Czech beer tasting and daily breakfast
- 3 nights hotel in Prague at the Old Town Hilton(or similar), including city tour, Christmas Markets,Czech beer tasting and daily breakfast
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.
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