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15 Days | Amsterdam to Budapest


DAY 1 | Amsterdam, Holland. Embark. Your Rhine cruise starts at 4:00 PM in Amsterdam, Netherlands. A transfer is included from Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport directly to your riverboat. Kick off your two-week Danube, Main and Rhine cruise with a traditional toast featuring Dutch gin, followed by dinner aboard the riverboat. (D)

Day 2 | Amsterdam. You'll be inspired by the acclaimed art by the Dutch Masters, including Rembrandt's The Night Watch, and many others you'll see on a guided tour of Amsterdam's renowned Rijksmuseum this morning. Then enjoy views of the city's remarkable architectural styles on a canal boat cruise along its network of 17th-century canals. The fun continues with a festive evening aboard the riverboat including the Captain's welcome reception, a special welcome dinner and a live musical performance. (B,L,D)

Day 3 | Cologne, Germany. Fascinating commentary by your Tauck Director (which you can listen to in your cabin if you choose) and lunch al fresco on the riverboat's sun deck enhance your morning's sail to the next stop on your Rhine cruise – Köln (Cologne), Germany's oldest city. Your guided walking tour includes the lofty, twin-spired Kölner Dom, elaborately decorated with pinnacles and buttresses; it is the tallest Gothic structure in the world, and took over 600 years to complete. Stroll through Köln's Hohe Strasse pedestrian area at your leisure in the afternoon. (B,L,D)

Day 4 | Koblenz or Marksburg Castle. Dock in Koblenz, and choose either a walking tour of Old Town, or a trip to 13th-century Marksburg Castle, built high above the Rhine. Relax as your Tauck Director shares a tale or two during the afternoon’s cruise through the scenic – and literally legendary – Lorelei Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A visit to Siegfrieds Mechanisches Musikkabinett, an eclectic collection of mechanical musical instruments housed in a 15th-century castle in Rüdesheim, precedes tonight's entertaining dinner in a local German restaurant with an old-world ambiance. (B,L,D)

Day 5 | Rhine Cruise to the Main River. Attend a demonstration of the time-honored skill of glass-blowing as you cruise the Rhine this morning. On an excursion to historic Lohr, nestled along the slopes of the Spessart mountain range in lower Franconia, you’ll see the Bayersturm (the town’s 14th-century watchtower), half-timbered houses and other notable sites on a walking tour. Then enjoy the views as your Rhine cruise continues into the Main River, through scenic valleys studded with castles, cathedrals, and fortified towns. A Bavarian-themed dinner awaits aboard the riverboat tonight. (B,L,D)

Day 6 | Rothenburg. Würzburg. Today's shore excursion takes you to medieval Rothenburg, on Germany's "Romantic Road," to see its Gothic cathedral and gabled houses. Later, a visit to charming Würzburg reveals the ornate Alte Mainbrücke, a bridge over the River Main, and the town's famed 18th-century Residenz, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; enjoy a wine tasting in the wine cellar of this Baroque masterpiece. And you'll know you're cruising through Bavaria when an oompa band plays for you tonight! (B,L,D)

Day 7 | Bamberg. Continue along the Main to the Bavarian town of Bamberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site situated atop seven hills. After discovering the town’s lovely gardens, medieval architecture and 13th-century Gothic cathedral with its four imposing towers on a walking tour of Old Town, you'll have time to explore this charming town on your own. (B,L,D)

Day 8 | Main-Danube Canal. Nüremberg. Tauck's Main, Danube and Rhine cruise negotiates the Main-Danube Canal today, which ultimately links the North Sea with the Black Sea – and which you'll learn all about from a local expert during your transit. The idea goes back as far as Charlemagne, but wasn't realized until this canal was completed in the 1990s; pass through 16 locks as the waterway traverses the mountains. Sail on to historic Nürnberg; following lunch and entertainment at a local restaurant, you'll have a choice of a walking tour through Nürnberg’s medieval ramparts to the Imperial Castle and the old city, or visits to the Courthouse, the Zeppelinfeld rally grounds, the Documentation Center and other city sites associated with World War II and its aftermath. Dinner is aboard the riverboat this evening. (B,L,D)

Day 9 | Regensburg. Passau. Stop in the well-preserved medieval town of Regensburg, once a campsite for the Roman legions. On a walking tour with our local guide, you'll see the Steinerne Brücke, a medieval stone bridge over the Danube that's the oldest in Germany; Altes Rathaus, the 15th-century town hall that was once the seat of the Imperial Diet; and Dom St. Peter, the town's towering Gothic cathedral. After exploring Regensburg as you please this afternoon, cruise along the Danube to Passau. (B,L,D)

Day 10 | Passau. Cruise the Danube. The riverboat docks in the port city of Passau, dating way back to Roman times. Spend time exploring this lovely Bavarian town – well-known for its Baroque architecture including unique four-story homes, scores of churches and marvelous stained glass – on a walking tour; inside St. Stephan’s Cathedral, you’ll see (and maybe even hear) the largest pipe organ outside of the U.S. (and the world’s biggest cathedral organ). Listen to commentary from your Tauck Director and take advantage of other activities as you continue your Danube, Main and Rhine cruise in the afternoon, bound for Melk, Austria; enjoy a musical performance by the Donau Klang Trio aboard the riverboat this evening. (B,L,D)

Day 11 | Melk, Austria. Durnstein. Your next destination is the town of Melk, Austria, where you'll step back in time on a guided tour of its 900-year-old Benedictine Abbey, perched on a rocky outcrop above the river. Inside this Baroque masterpiece are fine frescoes, early manuscripts, and a high altar. Enjoy views of medieval castles while cruising through the Wachau Valley to picturesque Dürnstein; stroll along its twisting lanes on a walking tour, and, if you wish, walk up to the hilltop ruins of a castle where King Richard the Lionhearted was held for ransom during the Crusades – the vistas are simply spectacular! A wine-tasting in a local restaurant and dinner back on board cap a delightful day. (B,L,D)

Day 12 | Vienna. Get an overview of Vienna, Austria's capital and one of Europe's greatest cities, with a morning sightseeing tour of this historic former capital of the Habsburg Empire. Take your choice of a tour of Schönbrunn Palace, built to rival Versailles, or a guided visit to the Imperial Silver Room inside the Hofburg, the Habsburgs' former Imperial palace that today is the official residence of Austria's president. Tonight, a Tauck Exclusive – a private, gala Imperial Evening at a traditional palace in Vienna, featuring a sumptuous dinner and live Viennese music – just might sweep you off your feet! (B,L,D)

Day 13 | Bratislava, Slovakia. Arise dockside in Bratislava, capital of Slovakia, where 17 centuries of history are chronicled on a walking tour led by a local guide. Highlights include Baroque palaces from the Habsburg era, along with St. Martin's Cathedral, the Opera House, Slovak Philharmonic Hall, and a visit to Old Town Hall. Please join the Captain and crew to celebrate the conclusion of your splendid Danube, Main and Rhine cruise with a special farewell cocktail reception and dinner aboard your riverboat tonight. (B,L,D)

Day 14 | Budapest, Hungary. Tauck's memorable Main, Danube and Rhine cruise arrives at your final destination – Budapest, Hungary's remarkable capital set on both sides of the Danube River. You'll explore both the Buda and Pest sections of the city on a sightseeing tour, viewing Heroes’ Square, bounded by some of the finest architectural works in Hungary; the Parliament building, a Neo-Gothic masterpiece; and Fishermen’s Bastion overlooking the Danube. (B,L,D)

Day 15 | Budapest, Hungary. Disembark. A transfer is included from the riverboat to Budapest's Ferihegy Airport. Allow 3 hours for departure flight check-in. (B)

NOTE: Itinerary is subject to change without notice. For the most up-to-date information, please refer to the itinerary schedule you receive with your final documents.

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