2018 : From the Danube Delta to Prague for Wine Lovers (WON-T1) - Illumination
20 Day River Cruise from Bucharest to Prague
Sail from Bucharest, Romania, to the mouth of the Danube where it flows into the Black Sea, explore the Danube Delta, and visit many exciting cities along the Danube River. From Budapest to Nuremberg, this cruise focuses on wine, and you'll be joined on board by a Master of Wine who will share his knowledge and expertise at lectures, wine tastings, and an exclusive food and wine-pairing dinner. A visit to a cellar in Melník introduces you to some of the wines of the Czech Republic.
Romania's lively capital of Bucharest is known for its wide, tree-lined boulevards and historical treasures. During guided sightseeing, you'll see the Arc de Triomphe and historical Royal Palace Square. Travel to Fetesti and sail to the mouth of the Danube River, then visit the serene Danube Delta, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There's guided sightseeing in Constanta; Bulgaria's ancient capital, Veliko Tarnovo; and Arbanassi; take pictures of Belogradchik's eclectic rock formations and the spectacular scenery of the Iron Gates. A local expert introduces you to Serbia's capital of Belgrade; and in Pecs, Hungary, visit the Underground Tombs, another UNESCO World Heritage Site. In lively Budapest, guided sightseeing shows you the must-see sights. In Austria's magical capital of Vienna, revel in the sights of Hofburg Palace, the Vienna Opera House, and much more. Your Europe river cruise continues to charming Durnstein and Melk for a visit of the magnificent 11th-century Benedictine Abbey. Later, enjoy a tasting of the Wachau Valley's famous wines. There's guided sightseeing in Passau, Regensburg, and Nuremberg.
Your Danube river cruise vacation concludes in Prague, one of Europe's best-preserved cities. See the many historical treasures with a local expert and join an excursion to nearby Melník for a visit to the Lobkowicz family vineyards and wine cellars for a perfect ending to a memorable river cruise vacation!
You've always forged your own path...with your own distinct perspective of looking at the world. Avalon Waterways presents a river cruise experience with your unique style in mind-offering expansive views and wider perspectives. That's why we've used our 89 years to design a cruise experience that's just a bit different. Here are just some of the features and amenities you'll experience on board our Avalon ships.
Highlights & Sightseeing
Day 1 Bucharest: welcome to Burcharest
Day 2 Bucharest-Fetesti (Embarkation): guided sightseeing in Bucharest; onboard welcome reception
Day 3 St. Gheorghe: excursion to Danube Delta; Km 0 celebration; onboard lecture
Day 4 Cernavoda: excursion to Constanta; guided sightseeing, visit the National History & Archaeological Museum
Day 5 Rousse. Excursion to Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi: guided sightseeing, visit Tsarevets Fortress in Veliko Tarnovo, and the Ethnographical Museum and Church of the Nativity in Arbanassi; or guided sightseeing of Rousse
Day 6 Vidin-Belogradchik: guided sightseeing to Vidin's fortress; excursion to Belogradchik to see the rock formations
Day 7 Iron Gates: cruise through the Iron Gates gorge; visit Lepenski Vir archaeological exhibition
Day 8 Belgrade: guided sightseeing
Day 9 Mohacs: excursion to Pecs, organ concert
Day 10 Budapest: guided sightseeing, see Fishermen's Bastion
Day 11 Budapest-Vienna: cruising; onboard wine tasting and lecture by our Master of Wine
Day 12 Vienna: guided sightseeing; onboard Food and Wine pairing dinner
Day 13 Durnstein-Melk: guided walk in Durnstein, see the Stiftskirche; guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey; wine tasting
Day 14 Passau: guided walk
Day 15 Regensburg: guided walk; enjoy a snack at the Historische Wurstkuche
Day 16 Nuremberg: choice of guided sightseeing or Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour
Day 17 Nuremberg (Disembarkation)-Prague: travel to Prague
Days 18-19 Prague: guided sightseeing, see the Astronomical Clock and visit Hradcany Castle grounds; excursion to Melnik; free time
Day 20 Prague: your vacation ends this morning
Arrive in Bucharest, Romania
Welcome to Bucharest! The remainder of the day is free to start exploring this fascinating city.
Much recent history has taken place in Romania's capital city, and its wide, treelined boulevards and Arc de Triomphe-built in 1922 to honor the bravery of Romanian soldiers who fought in WWI-have gained it the name "Paris of the East." During your INCLUDED TOUR this morning, see the main sights including Royal Palace Square, the scene of riots in 1989, which led to the collapse of the communist dictatorship. Later a motorcoach ride takes you to Fetesti, where your river cruise vessel is docked. Before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception. (Breakfast, Dinner)
St. Gheorghe. Danube Delta Excursion
This morning during breakfast, dock in St. Gheorghe, from where the excursion into the DELTA will start. A UNESCO World Heritage Site and the best preserved of Europe's deltas, this area hosts over 300 species of birds as well as 45 species of freshwater fish. From its source in the Black Forest to its delta at the Black Sea, the Danube measures 2,845 kilometers in length. The Km markings can be clearly seen on the river banks the length of the river. Depart St. Gheorghe during lunch and enjoy a small CELEBRATION to mark Km "0"-the end of the Danube's journey. This afternoon, enjoy a chance to relax and to learn more about the fascinating Delta at an ONBOARD LECTURE. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Cernavoda. Excursion to Constanta
From Cernavoda, an excursion takes you to Constanta on the Black Sea, the most important commercial center in Romania. A CERTIFIED LOCAL GUIDE shows you the highlights of this city and a visit of the NATIONAL HISTORY & ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM is included. This afternoon, relax on board as you cruise to Rousse. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Rousse, Bulgaria. Excursion to Veliko Tarnovo & Arbanassi-Svistov
Dock this morning in Rousse, Bulgaria's largest inland port. A comfortable motorcoach ride away is the ancient Bulgarian capital of Veliko Tarnovo. Situated on three hills surrounding the Yantra River, the city was a natural fortress with ancient stone houses clinging to the steep slopes. The oldest part is Tsarevets Hill, home of the ROYAL FORTRESS, and the Patriarch's Church. With your Local Guide, discover this town that played an important role in Bulgaria's history. Then, journey to Arbanassi. Founded in the 15th century, the historic village of Arbanassi is best known for its examples of Bulgarian Revival architecture and its ETHNOGRAPHICAL MUSEUM, a 400-year-old house preserved as a museum. Visit the CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY, one of the oldest churches in Arbanassi, and see its outstanding collection of frescoes. If you do not wish to participate in the full-day excursion, you may choose to remain on board and join an INCLUDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR of Rousse after breakfast. At lunchtime, sail for Svistov, where excursion participants will rejoin the ship. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Vidin. Excursion to Belogradchik
Today, enjoy a leisurely morning of sailing before arriving in Vidin, an important Danube port in northwestern Bulgaria. Its medieval FORTRESS, known as "Baba Vidin," is the town's primary landmark. It served as Vidin's main defensive installation during the course of the Middle Ages and is the only entirely preserved medieval fortress in the country. It is now a fortress museum and has been restored to its former appearance. In nearby Belogradchik, view the eclectic group of ROCK FORMATIONS on the western slopes of the Balkan Mountains. Sculpted by natural elements for more than 200 million years and with a variety of sizes and shapes, the Belogradchik Rocks are spectacular! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Iron Gates. Excursion to Lepenski Vir, Serbia
The most spectacular scenery must surely be the dramatic gorge of the IRON GATES, a narrow and formerly very dangerous passage dividing Europe's Alps in the northwest from the Carpathians in the southeast and forming a natural border between Serbia and Romania. After lunch dock at Donji Milanovac from where a short drive takes you to the impressive LEPENSKI VIR EXHIBITION CENTER housing archaeological artifacts found in this area and from where you have unique views of the Danube Gorge. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Early today, arrive in Belgrade. One of the oldest cities in Europe, the capital of Serbia is situated at the confluence of the Danube and Sava Rivers. A Local Guide will be proud to show you its main sights, including St. Sava, the world's largest Orthodox Church. In your free time, be sure to check out the city's lively pedestrian area and charming outdoor cafes. Perhaps visit one of the many art galleries or museums, or browse the local shops. Stroll through Belgrade's largest and most beautiful park which surrounds the city's principal landmark, Kalemegdan Fortress, and gaze down at the confluence of the Danube and Sava Rivers. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Mohacs, Hungary. Excursion to Pecs
Relax on board this morning before arriving in Mohacs, the first stop in Hungary. After lunch, an included excursion takes you to Pecs. Established by the Romans in the 2nd century, this was a flourishing and important town for Christianity by the 4th century. These early Christians left behind many underground burial chambers with memorial chapels above ground. With a Local Guide, visit the UNDERGROUND TOMBS-now part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site-many of which have splendidly decorated murals with Christian themes. Later, enjoy an ORGAN CONCERT. Pecs is also a rich showcase of Turkish architecture and home to Turkish mosques, striking churches, and an enjoyable atmosphere around its restaurants and cafes. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
This morning you arrive in Budapest. Spanning the banks of the Danube, Hungary's capital is one of Eastern Europe's liveliest cities. Whether you're seeing the sights, shopping for handcrafted embroidery or Herend porcelain, or basking in the coffee house culture over a rich cream cake in the renowned Gerbeaud Cafe, Budapest's unique energy is positively palatable. On an INCLUDED TOUR with your Local Guide, see Heroes' Square as well as the massive hilltop castle complex with its remarkable Fishermen's Bastion-with spectacular views of the city-and 11th-century Matthias Church, the coronation spot of several Hungarian monarchs. Be sure to take note of the city's eight bridges-famous sights in and of themselves-which connect ancient Buda on the right bank with Pest on the left. You may even want to walk across Chain Bridge, built in 1849 and a symbol of Budapest. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Enjoy a day of relaxation on board and marvel at the beautiful scenery on both banks of the Danube. Hungary is on your left as you cruise upriver and Slovakia is on your right. The two countries share the Danube for a 58-mile stretch, with the border in the middle of the river. Our Master of Wine joins you and will share his knowledge of some of the regional wines at an onboard lecture and a tasting of wines he has chosen for this occasion. This evening, arrive in Vienna, Austria's capital. Known as the "City of Music," it inspired the creative genius of Mozart, Beethoven, and Strauss. An optional concert is available during your stay. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Once the center of the mighty Habsburg Empire, Austria's magical capital on the blue Danube is a showcase of gilded architecture. This is home to the lavish Hofburg Imperial Palace complex with its Vienna Boys' Choir and dazzling Lipizzaner stallions; the neo-renaissance Vienna Opera House; and awe-inspiring St. Stephen's Cathedral-plus, countless other sights your LOCAL GUIDE will show you during an included CITY SIGHTSEEING TOUR. Stroll through the delightful pedestrian Karntnerstrasse, and be sure to take a break and enjoy a piece of decadent Sachertorte or Apfelstrudel in one of the classic Viennese coffee houses, historic institutions that helped shape Viennese culture! This evening, enjoy a special onboard FOOD AND WINE PAIRING DINNER hosted by our Master of Wine. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Durnstein, known for the magnificent baroque, blue Stiftskirche built in the 1700s, is right in the heart of the Wachau wine region. The main street of this small town-with a population of less than 1,000 people-is lined with 16th-century homes and charming cobblestone streets. This morning, your Local Guide will take you on an included WALKING TOUR and tell you the tale of England's King Richard the Lionheart, who was imprisoned in the castle whose ruins still stand above the town. During lunchtime, sail the picturesque Wachau Valley and arrive in Melk in the early afternoon. Here, enjoy a GUIDED VISIT of the magnificent 11th-century BENEDICTINE ABBEY, one of Europe's largest monasteries. The abbey houses an ornate library with over 80,000 printed books and 2,000 manuscripts. You'll be captivated by the splendor of the church with its frescoed ceilings, stunning high altar, marble statues, and 210-foot-high cupola. The view from the terrace over the Danube and surrounding countryside is breathtaking! This evening, sample some of the Wachau Valley's FAMOUS WINES. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Today, you might wish to choose from a couple of full-day optional excursions: to Salzburg, taking in some of The Sound of Music sights or to medieval Ceský Krumlov in the Czech Republic, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Alternatively, you may choose to stay on the ship and relax as you cruise to Passau, uniquely located where the Inn, Ilz, and Danube Rivers converge. Passau is a maze of narrow cobblestone streets lined with beautiful patrician houses and dominated by St. Stephen's Cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian baroque architecture. Take in the highlights on the included GUIDED WALK. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Dating back to the time of the Celts around 500 BC, Regensburg is one of Germany's best preserved medieval cities. Established during the Holy Roman Empire and the only German city not bombed during WWII, Regensburg has at least 1,300 listed buildings of "historic interest." Architectural highlights of your GUIDED WALK include the Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall), built in the 13th century, and Porta Pretoria, gates to an ancient Roman fort built in 179 AD. Wander through the city's lanes and alleys to discover the many mansions with high towers. Wealthy families built these towers to emphasize their status and wealth during the Middle Ages, and many still remain today. Walk across the 12th-century Steinerne Brucke (Stone Bridge), the oldest of its kind in Germany. Grab a beer and enjoy an included SNACK at the 17th-century Historische Wurstkuche (Old Sausage Kitchen), one of Germany's oldest restaurants. Here-where the locals congregate-feel the vibrant atmosphere and take in the remarkable views along the river. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Although 90% of Nuremberg's Old Town suffered extensive damage during WWII, much of it has been restored to the glory it once knew as the unofficial capital of the Holy Roman Empire. This afternoon, choose a GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR and marvel at this thousand-year-old city's medieval fortifications, extraordinary gothic churches, and the Kaiserburg (Imperial Castle), or join a more specialized "NUREMBERG RALLY GROUNDS" tour. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Nuremberg (Disembarkation)-Prague, Czech Republic
After breakfast, say goodbye to your crew and travel by motorcoach to Prague, the "Golden City." (Breakfast)
Prague is a 1,200-year-old city preserved in time, and, unlike other Central European capitals, it was not bombed during the 20th-century wars. A LOCAL GUIDE shows you its best known treasures, such as the Old Town's Astronomical Clock, built in 1410 and once the envy of all of Europe; HRADCANY CASTLE GROUNDS; St. Vitus Cathedral; and the Charles Bridge, the oldest bridge in Prague. Browse the shops for hand-cut crystal or art books. Mix with the locals in Wenceslas Square, an important meeting point where people demonstrated against the communist regime; or watch performers on Charles Bridge. (Breakfast)
Enjoy a free day to explore the city at your own pace. You might like to join our included excursion to MELNIK where you will learn more about Czech wines. Or perhaps visit the Communist Museum, sample the local plum dumplings and Pilsner; or stroll along the Vltava River. Your Cruise Director will have other suggestions for things to do. (Breakfast)
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)
Call (256) 413-0701 for more information or to book today! Mention code 13467653
- Cruise Line
- Avalon Waterways
- Offer valid through 9/30/2017
- 20 Days
- Cruise Ship
Click for more information on this ship.
|Day 3||St. Gheorghe|
|Day 7||Iron Gates|
Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included.
Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.
Extra nights per person in Bucharest:
in single room from $145 to $225, in twin room from $75 to $125
Extra nights per person in Prague:
in single room from $190 to $310, in twin room from $110 to $165
Prices shown above include cruise in Category E in a deluxe outside stateroom on Indigo Deck.
To upgrade to a higher category, add per person:
Category / Decks / Price
D / Indigo Deck / $426
B / Sapphire Deck / $2,462
A / Sapphire Deck / $2,569
P / Royal Deck / $2,784
Royal Suite / Royal Deck / $4,284
Prices shown are "starting at" prices and do not include airfare.
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