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Take a ride on the ferris wheel or take a stroll through the Christmas Market

European Christmas Market River Cruises

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Celebrate the holidays on a magical river cruise to the best Christmas markets in Europe. The traditional Christmas markets of Germany and surrounding countries date back to the 13th century, when they marked the beginning of the Advent season. Now, these holiday markets have evolved into a colorful seasonal display of shops and festivities for all to enjoy. Bustling markets are the heart of Christmas celebrations in Europe, with vibrant stalls offering everything from tinkered toys to fir wreaths to gingerbread houses. Here, we highlight some of our featured Rhine River and Danube River cruises specially designed around iconic Christmas markets in Germany, NetherlandsFrance, Switzerland, Hungary, and Austria. Discover iconic Christmas cities like Strasbourg and Vienna. Of course, these holiday tours have limited availability, so contact us today to reserve your spot.

10 Best Christmas River Cruises in Europe for 2023-2024

Our Favorite River Ships with Christmas Market Itineraries

Ship NameMax PassengersFromSummary
MS Amakristina158$1999The Amakristina is the sister ship to the Amaviola and Amastella, and features the most advanced design of any river cruise vessel currently in …
Scenic Amber163$2695Measuring 443 feet in length and carrying just 163 passengers, the luxury vessel, Scenic Amber marries space and intimacy with a sense of exclusivity …
MS Amamora156$3299AmaMora offers a host of added comforts and conveniences, including a massage and hair salon, gift shop and specialty coffee station. You are sure to …
S.S. Beatrice152$3399This stunning 430 ft long and 152-passenger beauty, the S.S. Beatrice offers the ultimate experience of cruising along the Danube and Main Rivers. …
S.S. Antoinette152$2999Travel aboard the 152-passenger S.S. Antoinette, a rare pearl on the Rhine River, and capture the moment of seeing Germany on one side and France on …
MS Amastella158$3299With occupancy for up to 158 passengers, the MS Amastella is one of Europe's newest and most innovative riverboats, featuring a variety of staterooms …
MS Amaviola158$2899The AmaViola ? set to debut in 2016 ? is a sister ship to the AmaSerena and features the most advanced design of any river cruise vessel currently in …

Top Luxury European Christmas Market Cruises

Trip NameFromDaysNext DepartureSummary
Danube Christmas Markets$54458Dec 13, 2022Feel the enchantment of the Christmas markets that have graced the Danube for centuries. Scenic Amber river ship takes you from Budapest to Nuremberg …
Christmas Markets on the Danube$439911Dec 9, 2022Board the MS Amabella for this unique 11-day adventure visiting some of Europe's most enchanting Christmas Markets on the scenic Danube River route …
Rhine Christmas Markets$39958Dec 14, 2022Begin this magical 8-day Rhine River cruise in Basel as you explore Christmas Markets along the Rhine River all the way to Amsterdam. Enjoy the …
Grand Christmas & New Year's$699913Dec 22, 2022Embark on the S.S. Beatrice in Nuremberg for 13 amazing days over the Christmas and new years season sailing through Germany, Austria and Hungary …
Rhine Holiday Markets$30998Dec 12, 2022Switzerland, France and Germany provide the perfect backdrop for this true connoisseur’s Christmas market cruise. Embark the S.S. Antoinette from …
Danube Christmas Markets$44458Dec 6, 2023Enjoy an 8-day luxury Danube Christmas Markets River cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest aboard the 5-star luxury Scenic Amber. Along the way, visit …
Christmas Markets on the Rhine - Cruise Only$34998Dec 13, 2022Enjoy a 7-night cruise from Amsterdam to Basel aboard the MS Amaprima. As you sail the Rhine River, visit classic Christmas markets, bike along …
Rhine Christmas Markets$39958Dec 12, 2022Admire festive decorations and twinkling lights along streets and squares, and even the Scenic Crystal will be decked out in all its Christmas …
Christmas Markets on the Rhine$33958Dec 12, 2022Explore the different Christmas markets in Europe with Emerald Destiny on this 8-day cruise. Visit several towns, from Basel to Amsterdam, and shop …
Danube Christmas Markets with Prague$494511Dec 13, 2022The Christmas markets along the Danube are an incredible sight. Festive market stalls twinkle with fairy lights and are piled high with gingerbread …

Travel Guide to Europe's Christmas Markets

Highlights of the Christmas Markets
These exclusive tours come but once a year, just before the Christmas holiday. Temperatures aren't quite freezing, but don't expect a warm summer holiday either. That's the price you pay to witness and explore one of Europe's most ancient traditions - the Christmas Markets.

Primarily situated along the Danube River and a scattered also along the Rhine, small towns and big cities alike bring their squares and plazas into vibrant colors as they recognize this age-old holiday event. 

Here's what to look for:
  • Hot food and drinks - prepared in traditional ways, this is one of the best times to get a taste of the true flavor of central Europe.
  • Handmade souvenirs, like ornaments, toys, and artisanal goods.
  • Singing, dancing, and cultural celebrations on every corner. 

Christmas Stories from the Rivers of Europe

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