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8 Days | Danube Holiday Markets


Day 1 | Budapest, Hungary. Arrive at Budapest Ferihegy International Airport where you will be transferred to the ship. (D)

Day 2 | Budapest. Explore Budapest, an enchanting city often referred to as the “Queen of the Danube.” Made up of two parts—Buda, the hills, and Pest, the flat lands—the city is divided by the Danube. It’s an architectural dream, which you will discover on your city tour. You will visit the UNESCO World Heritage-designated Castle Hill district and see dramatic vistas from the 19th-century Fisherman’s Bastion. You will cross the famous Chain Bridge, an early-19th-century bridge that was the first to connect Buda with Pest. In the center of it all is the Christmas Market, where you will get to shop for traditional Hungarian wares and delightful holiday treats like apricot brandy and cinnamon-spiced gingerbread. (BB, L, Captain’s Welcome Gala)

Day 3 | Bratislava, Slovakia. The heart and soul of Slovakia, Bratislava is full of surprises—many of which you will discover on your walking tour of historic downtown Bratislava endingat the Christmas Market. While Bratislava’s very first Christmas Market was only established in 1993, the Slovakians have quickly embraced the holiday traditions of their Austrian and Hungarian neighbors with stalls filled with folk handicrafts from the region. (BB, L,D)

Day 4 | Vienna, Austria. You will travel the stately Ringstrasse and see St. Stephen’s Cathedral, where Mozart was married in 1782. You will also visit the Baroque State Hall of the Austrian National Library, said to be the most beautiful library in the world. Afterward, you will be guided to two Christmas Markets. Austria’s most famous Christmas Market, with over 140 wooden huts, is set in front of City Hall. Macaroons with nutmeg and rum balls are two treats you won’t want to miss. You will also visit a smaller, but no less charming, Christmas Market at Freyung Square, which has taken place every winter since 1772. In the evening, celebrate the spirit of Mozart and Strauss in one of Vienna’s well known concert halls. (BB, L, D)

Note: On Mondays, Mozarthaus will be substituted for the National Library.

Day 5 | Krems. Cruising the Wachau Valley. You’ll visit the beautiful Benedictine Göttweig Abbey, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which has a spectacular location on a prominent hill on the eastern edge of the world famous Wachau Valley. While at the abbey, you will be treated to a special organ recital. After lunch, depart Krems and enjoy a scenic cruise through the UNESCO-designated Wachau Valley. (BB, L, D)

Note: The organ concert may take place in a different location if the Göttweig Abbey visit falls on a Catholic holiday.

Day 6 | Linz (Salzburg or Linz/Steyr). Choose a full-day excursion to Salzburg including a walking tour of Old Town. Its magnificent cathedral was inspired by St. Peter’s Cathedral at the Vatican. In the afternoon, visit Salzburg’s Christmas Market. Located at the foot of the Hohensalzburg Fortress and around the venerable cathedral, it is a feast for the senses—from the warm aroma of mulled wine and Austrian pastry delights, to the sights and sounds of holiday performances, to the colors and textures of traditional handcrafts. Or explore the beautiful towns of Steyr and Linz, home to numerous Christmas Markets featuring a surprising variety of intricate Christmas crèches. While there, don’t miss tasting the local treat—the Linzer torte or nibble on gingerbread while you enjoy carols performed by brass bands and local choirs. (BB, D)

Day 7 | Passau, Germany. Your guided walk starts in the Medieval section of Passau and takes you past St. Stephan’s Cathedral, the New Residence, and Town Hall, to the confluence of the three rivers that converge in Passau. At Passau’s Christmas Market, set against the glorious backdrop of St. Stephan’s Cathedral, you will find unique crafts, including Bavarian-style houses and glass ornaments. As an added treat, you will attend a gingerbread-making and floral decorating demonstration. (BB, L, Captain’s Farewell Dinner)

Day 8 | Passau. Disembark the ship in Passau and transfer to Munich Airport for your flight home, or extend your stay in the beautiful city of Prague. (CB, BB)

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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