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26 Days | Ultimate European Journey


Day 1 | Amsterdam, Holland. Embark. Arrive at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, where you will be transferred to the ship.

Day 2 | Cologne, Germany. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Cologne walking tour with Cologne Cathedral visit. Visit Cologne’s beloved Gothic cathedral—a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the evening, enjoy a Captain’s Welcome Reception and Gala Dinner. Note: On Sundays and Catholic holidays, guided tours inside the cathedral are not allowed, but individual visits are still welcomed.

Day 3 | Cruising the romantic Rhine River. Rüdesheim. FEATURED EXCURSION:  Gondola ride to the Niederwald Monument. Cruise the UNESCO World Heritage-designated Upper Middle Rhine Valley. Take a scenic gondola ride above the vineyards of Rudesheim to the Niederwald Monument.

Day 4 | Frankfurt (Heidelberg or Frankfurt). FEATURED EXCURSION: Choice of full-day Heidelberg visit or exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” Frankfurt walking tour. Visit Heidelberg, home to the most beautiful Renaissance castle ruins in Europe. Or, see Frankfurt as the locals do, with a guided walking tour. Note: Lunch is not included with the full-day Heidelberg tour.

Day 5 | Miltenberg. Cruising the Main River. FEATURED EXCURSION:  Miltenberg walking tour with exclusive “Village Day”. Discover charming and historic Miltenberg with a walking tour followed by a beer tasting at one of Miltenberg’s famous breweries. Or, make an exclusive visit to a farm in a nearby village; learn about watercolor painting with an artist in her home; or enjoy a hike up to Helmstetter vineyard or the nearby castle ruins.

Day 6 | Würzburg. FEATURED EXCURSION: Würzburg Residenz. Visit the exquisite Würzburg Residenz, a treasure trove of baroque art and architecture.

Day 7 | Cruising the Main River. Day at leisure on board while sailing on the scenic Main River.

Day 8 | Bamberg. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Bamberg walking tour or exclusive Franconian “Village Day” farm and village visit. Relax onboard as your ship wends its way down the serene Main River. Wander through the UNESCO World Heritage city of Bamberg, or get a taste of the countryside as you explore a farm and village in the Franconian hills.

Day 9 | Nuremberg. Cruising the Main-Danube Canal. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Nuremberg city tour or Nuremberg WWII historical tour with Documentation Center visit. In Nuremberg, explore the highlights of this archetypal medieval city, or tour the city’s most important WWII sites, including the Nazi Party Rally Grounds and Courtroom 600, where the famous Nuremberg trials took place. Later, cross the European continental divide as you cruise through the Main-Danube Canal. Note: Courtroom 600 is an active court. Visitors will only be permitted to see the courtroom during trial breaks.

Day 10 | Regensburg. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of “2,000 Years in One Hour” Regensburg walking tour, Jewish Regensburg, or BMW factory visit. Discover one of Germany’s unspoiled, UNESCO-designated medieval gems in Regensburg, or tour sites associated with Germany’s oldest Jewish community. For a change of pace, you might choose to visit the BMW factory. Note: If the tour lands on a day when the BMW factory is closed, we will visit the Audi factory instead.

Day 11 | Passau. Cruising the Danube River. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Passau walking tour with St. Stephan’s organ concert or exclusive guided “Go Active” bike ride along the Danube river. Discover accessible and charming Passau on your guided walking tour and then hear the magnificent pipe organ at St. Stephan’s Cathedral. Or bike along the beautiful Danube River with an expert guide. Note: St. Stephan’s organ concert is only available May 1 – October 31, excluding Sundays and Catholic holidays. An alternative venue will be organized before and after these dates.

Day 12 | Cruising the Wachau Valley, Austria. Weissenkirchen (Weissenkirchen or Melk). FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Weissenkirchen “Village Day” with exclusive fruit brandy distillery visit or exclusive guided “Go Active” vineyard hike with wine tasting or Melk Abbey with library visit. Stroll through the lovely village of Weissenkirchen and sample either the local schnapps or wine. Or, visit Melk’s magnificent baroque abbey. Later in the afternoon, relax onboard as you sail through the enchanting UNESCO-designated Wachau Valley.

Day 13 | Vienna. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Vienna city tour with Winter Palace of Prince Eugene visit or exclusive “Vienna, City of Arts” tour. Unearth Vienna’s imperial history during a tour that takes you along Ringstrasse and to Prince Eugene’s Winter Palace. Or, opt to explore “Vienna, City of Arts” with a visit to the Kunstkammer wing of the Art History Museum and Belvedere Palace. In the evening, enjoy a Captain’s Farewell Reception and Gala Dinner. Note: The Art History Museum is closed on Mondays. If the tour lands on a Monday, Albertina Museum will be visited instead.

Day 14 | Budapest, Hungary. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Budapest city tour or exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” Budapest walking tour. A panoramic coach tour shows you the UNESCO-designated highlights of the city. Or discover the Budapest that locals love with a visit to the Grand Market, a walk to Károlyi Garden, and a stop at a famous coffee house.

Day 15 | Budapest. Enjoy a free day in Budapest.

Day 16 | Budapest. Cruising the Danube River. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Budapest city tour or exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” Budapest walking tour. Savor the beauty of Buda and Pest, which lie on opposite sides of the Danube, with a panoramic coach tour. Marvel at St. Stephen’s Basilica, the Hungarian National Museum, and the UNESCO-designated Castle Hill district, where you’ll find the magnificent St. Matthias Church. Or, “Do as the Locals Do” by hopping on the metro to Lehel Market Hall, an enormous indoor food and fruit market. After enjoying a coffee break at a local coffee house and sweet shop, you’ll head to the oldest garden in Budapest, the beautiful Károlyi Garden, before ending at the National Museum. In the evening, enjoy a Captain’s Welcome Reception and Gala Dinner.

Day 17 | Cruising the Danube River. Vukovar (Osijek), Croatia. FEATURED EXCURSION: Full-day tour of Vukovar and Osijek with farm visit and home-hosted lunch. Begin the day in Vukovar with a short walking tour and a visit to the Green Market. As you depart Vukovar for Osijek, you’ll notice that many of the city’s buildings have been damaged—a powerful reminder of the devastation visited on Vukovar during the Croatian War of Independence. Then take a walk through Osijek’s Old Town, including an exploration of Tvrda (the 18th-century baroque citadel) and the Church of the Holy Cross, before leaving the cities behind to explore life as it’s lived in the Croatian countryside. You’ll be welcomed to a third-generation family-owned farm, where you’ll be treated to a delicious tapas-style repast. On your drive back to the ship, you’ll enjoy spectacular views of the Kopacki Rit, one of the largest intact wetlands in Europe.

Day 18 | Belgrade, Serbia. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Belgrade city tour with visit to the Royal Grounds of Karadjordjevic Dynasty Palace or exclusive guided “Go Active” “I Bike Belgrade” tour. Welcome to beautiful Belgrade, Serbia’s capital and largest city. Today you have your choice of two ways to see the “White City.” You could enjoy a panoramic tour, driving past the National Museum, Parliament, and Kalemegdan Fortress before touring the Royal Palace. Or, you could see Belgrade as few tourists do—from the seat of a bicycle. Your leisurely route will highlight sites relevant to the city’s more-immediate past, from WWII to today. After enjoying a refreshing stop at a traditional fishermen’s bar, you’ll end with a fantastic view of the city from Kalemegdan Fortress.

Day 19 | Cruising the Iron Gates. Spend a peaceful day cruising the majestic Iron Gates, a spectacularly scenic stretch of the Danube that marks the boundary between Romania and Serbia.

Day 20 | Vidin. Cruising the Danube River. FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Belogradchik rock formations or Romanian “Cetate Cultural Port” visit. Explore the lesser-known town of Vidin and visit the extraordinary Belogradchik rocks (their peculiar shapes have given rise to many legends). Or, visit a unique cultural center—the Cetate Cultural Port. Reconstructed from Cetate’s old port, it is now a residence for writers and artists, including Mircea Dinescu, a poet and journalist who was a key figure in the Romanian Revolution.

Day 21 | Rousse, Bulgaria (Veliko Tarnovo and Arbanassi or Rousse and Ivanovo). FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Veliko Tarnovo and Arbanassi with authentic Bulgarian lunch or Rousse walking tour and Ivanovo and Basarbovo monasteries. In Veliko Tarnovo, see the majestic ruins of Tsarevetz Castle. Then visit the frescoed Nativity Church in Arbanassi before stopping at a village restaurant for a typical Bulgarian lunch, complete with live folk music. Or, enjoy a walking tour of charming Rousse, known as “Little Vienna” for its striking neobaroque and neorococo architecture. Then, tour the countryside, including the UNESCO-designated rock-hewn cave churches of Ivanovo and Basarbovo (located in the craggy precincts of a national forest). In the evening, enjoy a Captain’s Farewell Reception and Gala Dinner.

Day 22 | Giurgiu, Romania. Bucharest. FEATURED EXCURSION: Bucharest city tour with People’s Palace visit. Disembark the ship and transfer via motorcoach to Bucharest. Enjoy a panoramic tour of this eclectic capital city, with its mix of monumental Communist buildings and French-influenced architecture, as you make your way to the extraordinary People’s Palace, the house of Parliament (and the largest civilian building in the world!).

Day 23 | Bucharest. Enjoy a day in Bucharest at your leisure.

Day 24 | Bucharest. Istanbul, Turkey. FEATURED EXCURSION: Istanbul city tour with Grand Bazaar and Topkapi Palace. Depart from Bucharest and fly to Istanbul. Once in Istanbul, a panoramic tour takes you to Istanbul’s greatest sites. Then wend your way through the vaulted passages and six thousand merchant stalls of the Grand Bazaar. Afterwards it's on to Topkapi Palace, the official residence of the Ottoman sultans from the 15th through the 19th centuries. Note: Hagia Sophia is closed on Mondays and Topkapi Palace is closed on Tuesdays. The city tour of Istanbul will be arranged in accordance with the days they are open. If Hagia Sophia is not available during your stay, we will offer the harem visit in Topkapi Palace instead.

Day 25 | Istanbul. FEATURED EXCURSION: Istanbul city tour with Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia. Once in Istanbul, a panoramic tour takes you to Istanbul’s greatest sites including the Blue Mosque nicknames for the beautiful blue of the Iznik tiles that line its walls.  Moving on, you'll then visit magnificent Hagia Sophia, the "Church of Holy Wisdom," one of the most celebrated houses of worship in the world. Note: Sultanahmet (Blue Mosque) is a place of active worship. Ceremonies may restrict visitors from entering at times. At all times, please obey mosque etiquette. Note: Hagia Sophia is closed on Mondays and Topkapi Palace is closed on Tuesdays. The city tour of Istanbul will be arranged in accordance with the days they are open. If Hagia Sophia is not available during your stay, we will offer the harem visit in Topkapi Palace instead.

Day 26 | Istanbul. Transfer to Istanbul Ataturk Airport for your flight home.

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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