Have questions? We're here.
Wander a cozy Christmas Market

Danube Christmas Delights

Budapest - Passau - Example 8 Day Cruise aboard Viking Cruises
Talk with an expert
Build your ideal Danube River trip. Call 1.406.541.2677
Start Planning My Trip
Embark on an 8-day Danube Christmas Delights cruise with Viking Cruises, exploring the gems of Budapest, Bratislava, Vienna, Wachau Valley, Linz, and Passau. In Budapest, be enchanted by the stunning architecture and thermal spas, while the Christmas season adds a romantic touch with yuletide markets. Bratislava's historic Old Town turns into a winter wonderland, and Vienna's beautiful squares come alive with delightful Christmas markets. Sail through Austria's scenic Wachau Valley, surrounded by vineyards and charming towns. Linz offers its famous Linzer Torte and a picturesque Christmas market, while Passau's strategic location at the confluence of three rivers boasts stunning architecture and the grand St. Stephen's Cathedral.
Detailed ornament at a Christmas MarketBudapest CityscapeBudapest, the capital city of HungaryExplore the history and culture of BudapestMorning view on Bratislava cityExplore beautiful ViennaDiscover the art and culture of ViennaCruise down the charming Wachau valleyCruise the beautiful blue DanubeExplore the charming Austrian town of LinzVisit charming PassauSunset over PassauWander a cozy Christmas Market
Highlights
  • Wander through Bratislava's winter wonderland with light-festooned streets
  • Taste Linz's famous Linzer Torte at its baroque Christmas market
  • Explore Christkindlmarkt's delightful market, handmade goods and choir
  • Discover Passau's history at "City of Three Rivers"
Activity Level: Relaxed
Involves minimal physical effort and is typically associated with leisurely activities. Activities are low-intensity or last less than a few hours each day.
0

Full Itinerary

Expand All

Day 1: Budapest, Hungary | Embark

Embark your ship and settle into your stateroom. Riverside's beauty and vibrant cultural scene blend together in Budapest to form one of Europe’s most rewarding cities. Hungary’s enchanting capital straddles the banks of the Danube, with traditional hillside Buda on one side and modern Pest on the other. By day, astounding art nouveau buildings, stalwart castles, and glittering palaces set the stage for awe-inspiring strolls and long soaks in thermal spas. By night, a nostalgic glow settles in as the city’s lights dance on Danube waters, the Chain Bridge uniting it all as a dramatic centerpiece.

Day 2: Budapest, Hungary

The Christmas season adds another layer of beauty to the already romantic charms of Budapest. Nestled in the heart of Pest lies Vörösmarty Square, home to the city’s largest yuletide market. The enticing aroma of national specialties permeates the air as vendors display traditional and contemporary handicrafts. At the cozy St. Stephen’s Basilica market, mulled wine keeps revelers warm as nightly light shows illuminate the church’s facade. Across the Danube in Buda, Old-World allure mingles with festivities in Fő Square, where seasonal events and an outdoor ice rink entertain.

Day 3: Bratislava, Slovakia

The aroma of mulled wine and Slovakian delicacies mixes with the sound of Christmas carols to turn Bratislava’s historic Old Town into a winter wonderland during the holiday season. The medieval Bratislava Castle overlooks light-festooned streets that give the city a fairytale glow. Vendors in Hlavné Námestíe Square display authentic artisanal handicrafts, and a specially decorated Christmas tram adds to the holiday atmosphere as it transports visitors to the different fairs spread out around the city.

Day 4: Vienna, Austria

The yuletide season transforms Vienna’s beautiful squares into delightful Christmas markets. Festive lights illuminate the Old Town. The Schönbrunn market, set in front of the baroque Hapsburg summer palace, and Freyung market, nestled in the city center, are the perfect destinations for unique handmade decorations. Seasonal music and choral singing provide a merry ambiance to holiday festivities in Am Hof Square, while the market at Belvedere Square mixes excellent shopping opportunities with views of the stately palace and adjacent lake to create a fairytale atmosphere.

Day 5: Krems, Austria & Scenic Sailing: Wachau Valley

A small university town at the eastern end of the Danube’s Wachau Valley, Krems is surrounded by terraced vineyards. In its heyday, during the 12th century, Krems held even more importance than Vienna for its iron, grain, salt, and wine trade. As to the latter, the city has played a long and celebrated part in the popularity of Wachau’s wine culture; the valley’s south slopes in Krems are bathed in sunlight all day and create some of the best Riesling and Veltliner wines in the world. The city’s cobblestone streets, taverns, wine bars, and cafés have a timeless appeal.

Sail through a serene tapestry of terraced vineyards, forested slopes, charming towns, and castle ruins in Austria’s Wachau Valley, celebrated as perhaps the most scenic stretch of the Danube. Journey 18 miles through this vast UNESCO World Heritage Site, where the river courses through picturesque hillsides. Gaze upon the prolific grapevines and quaint wine-producing villages hugging the shores—the legacy of vintners that stretches as far back as Celtic and Roman times and an echo of the more than 30 monasteries that served as vineyards in Renaissance days.

Day 6: Linz, Austria

Linz is today’s provincial capital of Upper Austria. The city’s famous Linzer Torte, the jam-filled cake topped with almonds, hails from here and can be found in any number of cafés and the stalls of the city’s Christmas markets. In the Old Town, the baroque architecture of the main square provides a stunning backdrop for its Christmas market as the scent of gingerbread fills the air. At the Volksgarten, a nativity scene provides an atmospheric feature with the sounds of classical music and moving figurines that tell the story of the birth of Jesus Christ.

Day 7: Passau, Germany

Centered around the beautiful St. Stephen’s Cathedral, home to Europe’s largest pipe organ, the romantic market stalls of the Christkindlmarkt is a delight to explore. An array of handmade goods, from tasty treats to ornaments, offer a wealth of opportunities to take home unique artisan gifts created by local craftsmen. Periodically throughout the festive season, the cathedral hosts yuletide concerts; the sound of choirs singing can be heard as their voices echo through the courtyard and the town’s narrow streets.

Day 8: Passau, Germany | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Founded by the Celts, Passau is one of Bavaria’s oldest cities. Known as the “City of Three Rivers,” it rests at the confluence of the Inn, Ilz, and Danube Rivers. The city has long enjoyed its strategic position and grew to great economic and political power because of it. The legacy of its past prosperity lives on in graceful arcades, colorful houses with rococo facades and the glorious baroque St. Stephen’s Cathedral, home to one of Europe’s largest pipe organs. Passau is also where two nations meet; it is here that the German-Austrian border begins. After breakfast, disembark your ship and journey home.

Ship/Hotel

Viking Cruises

Viking River Cruises
Viking River Cruises
Viking River Cruises

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$2,999 2-3 travelers
Rates are dynamic and fluctuate based on capacity. Contact us for a specific quote.
Viking Ship
Select a Date
Standard Stateroom (F)
150 sq ft, river-view with half-height picture window. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.
Select a Date
Standard Stateroom (E)
150 sq ft, river-view with half-height picture window. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.
Select a Date
French Balcony Stateroom (D)
135 sq ft, river-view with floor-to-ceiling sliding glass door & French balcony. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.
Select a Date
French Balcony Stateroom (C)
135 sq ft, river-view with floor-to-ceiling sliding glass door with French balcony. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.
Viking Ship
Select a Date
Veranda Stateroom (B)
205 sq ft, river-view with floor-to-ceiling sliding glass door & full-size veranda. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.
Viking Ship
Select a Date
Veranda Stateroom (A)
205 sq ft, river-view with floor-to-ceiling sliding glass door & full-size veranda. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.
Viking Ship
Select a Date
Veranda Suite (AA)
275 sq ft, river-view with full-size veranda off separate sitting room & French balcony off sleeping quarters. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.
Viking Ship
Select a Date
Explorer Suite (ES)
445 sq ft, river-view with private wraparound balcony off separate sitting room & French balcony off sleeping quarters. Hotel-style bed with optional twin-bed configuration; luxury linens & pillows. Flat-screen TV with infotainment system, outlets & USB ports. Telephone, safe, refrigerator, hair dryer & individual climate control. Private bathroom with heated floor and premium toiletries.

Notes

*This itinerary runs departures aboard multiple sister-ships. Contact us for more details.
Included
  • 7 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 7 Dinners
  • 7 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Beer, wine & soft drinks with onboard lunch & dinner
  • Port Taxes & Fees
  • 24-hour specialty coffees, teas & bottled water
  • Free Wi-Fi (connection speed may vary)
  • Visits to UNESCO Sites
  • Enrichment lectures & Destination Performances
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Drinks, beverages and meals not included in the package
  • Optional shore excursions/tours/concerts

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

Inquire

* By providing your phone number, you consent to receive direct phone calls or SMS messages from our Trip Planners to get the process started. We do not share your information with third-parties.
Travel Agents

We Love to Talk Travel

Call 1.800.344.6118
or
Chat Now
Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen
More Reasons

Why Travel With Adventure Life

All News

Recognized By