Christmastime from Budapest to Basel with 2 Nights in Budapest 2020 - 19 Day River Cruise Budapest to Basel
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Christmastime from Budapest to Basel with 2 Nights in Budapest 2020

19 Day River Cruise Budapest to Basel

Starting at $7,627


Destinations & Sightseeing
Itinerary and Meals
Accomodations

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Board your Avalon Suite Ship® in Budapest—the “Pearl of the Danube”—after enjoying two nights in the “Pearl of the Danube.” Your Danube River trip embarks with an overnight cruise to Vienna to see the historic Vienna Opera House and stunningly beautiful St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Sail through the amazing views of the Wachau Valley, and stop in the beautiful villages along the way. Continue your Christmas cruise sailing to Nuremberg. Enjoy a guided city sightseeing of Munich and go on with a guided sightseeing tour of the glowing Christkindlesmarkt of Bamberg—complete with dozens of nativity scenes of every size. Savor the sights, sounds, and confections of Würzburg’s warm Christmas markets before sailing to visit a picturesque Main River Village. Enjoy Heidelberg’s sparkling Christmas markets during your stay, before sailing for the splendid French city of Strasbourg.

Your European Christmas market cruise continues to Breisach and the Black Forest of Bavaria, where you’ll experience generations of warm and festive Christmas traditions—from Bavarian bretzels to Black Forest Cake and mulled wine, you’ll feel the Christmas spirit in this idyllic setting in the heart of Germany. Your win-ter river cruise will conclude in Basel, Switzerland. With Christmas celebration and special traditions large and small, you’ll keep the visions of your European scenic river cruise in your memory for many Christmases to come.



Destination & Sightseeing

Day 1 Budapest: welcome to Budapest!
Day 2 Budapest: guided sightseeing, see Heroes’ Square; Christmas market
Day 3 Budapest (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception
Day 4 Budapest–Vienna: scenic sailing, pass through Bratislava; Austrian cookies tasting on board
Day 5 Vienna: choice of guided sightseeing, or culinary tour at Christmas market
Day 6 Krems–Wachau Valley–Melk: guided city walk in Krems; scenic sailing through the Wachau Valley; guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey in Melk
Day 7 Passau: guided walk
Day 8 Regensburg: guided city walk; free time for Christmas markets; onboard Christmas lecture; beer tasting on board
Day 9 Nuremberg: choice of guided sightseeing, or Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour, or Roth sightseeing; Christmas market
Day 10 Nuremberg. Excursion to Munich: full-day guided tour in Munich
Day 11 Nuremberg: day at leisure to visit Christmas markets
Day 12 Bamberg: guided tour, see the Old Town Hall; onboard Christmas Traditions lecture
Day 13 Würzburg: guided tour, visit the Bishop’s Residenz; Christmas market
Day 14 Main river village: cookie-baking demonstration on board, guided tour
Day 15 Frankfurt. Excursion to Rüdesheim: visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum; enjoy a special treat
Day 16 Heidelberg–Speyer: guided visit of Heidelberg Castle, see the Great Vat, Christmas markets; Christmas markets in Speyer
Day 17 Strasbourg: guided tour, visit La Petite France district and the gothic cathedral; Christmas market
Day 18 Breisach: choice of visit to Badische Winzerkeller, or excursion the Black Forest; Christmas market
Day 19 Basel (Disembarkation): your vacation ends this morning
Notes:
  • In the event of technical or water level issues, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or alter the program, including hotel overnight when necessary.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • Christmas markets generally operate from late November until the third week of December.

MEALS

ITINERARY

Day 1
CLASSIC Enjoy a Guided City Sightseeing, including the iconic Heroes’ Square

Day 2
CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of Vienna to see the Imperial Palace complex—the winter residence of the Imperial family, OR:

Day 3
CLASSIC Join a Guided City Walk and see Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall) and Porta Pretoria—built in 179 AD as the entrance to Castra Regina fortress

Day 4
CLASSIC Choose a Guided Sightseeing of Nuremberg—with its medieval architecture, gilded fountain, gothic cathedral, and Kaiserburg Castle, OR; CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of the historic Nuremberg Rally Grounds—used by the Third Reich

Day 5
CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of a picturesque village along the Main River

Day 6
CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour that includes the magnificent Heidelberg Castle and the Great Vat—the world’s largest wine barrel. After the tour, visit the local German Christmas markets in Heidelberg

Day 7
DISCOVERY Join a Guided Culinary Tour of Vienna’s magical Christmas Advent Markets to sample Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel

Day 8
DISCOVERY Enjoy a Christmas Traditions Lecture on board while sailing this afternoon. DISCOVERY Later, indulge in a Beer Tasting on board

Day 9
DISCOVERY Join a Cookie-Baking Demonstration on board your ship while sailing

Day 10
DISCOVERY Visit to Badische Winzerkeller, the largest German wine producer in Europe. Discover Germany’s southernmost wine country in Baden—ideally situated between the hills of the Black Forest and the Rhine River. Learn about the vintners’ process in the vineyards here, and enjoy a wine tasting, OR:DISCOVERY Join a Guided Tour to the magical Black Forest to experience local traditions and the vibrant Christmas mood

Day 11
Take in the beauty of Budapest while enjoying a free afternoon exploring such famous sights as the Chain Bridge. Get to know the city’s cafés and pubs, and don’t miss the unique Christmas markets that Budapest hosts every year during the Festive season

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Day 19
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. Flights should not leave Zürich airport before 10 am or Basel airport before 8 am

Day 20
BUDAPEST

Day 21
VIENNA

Day 22
REGENSBURG

Day 23
NUREMBERG

Day 24
NUREMBERG

Day 25
MAIN RIVER VILLAGE

Day 26
EXCURSION TO HEIDELBERG. SPEYER

Day 27
BREISACH, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO BLACK FOREST

Day 28
BASEL, SWITZERLAND (DISEMBARKATION)

Day 29
OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO KREMS

Day 30
AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO NUREMBERG

Day 31
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG

Day 32
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BAMBERG

Day 33
AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO FRANKFURT

Day 34
EVENING/OVERNIGHT TO STRASBOURG

Day 35
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BASEL

Day 36
Breakfast

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Day 53
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Day 54 BUDAPEST, HUNGARY
Welcome to Budapest—Hungary’s Captivating Capital The day is yours to relax and enjoy Eastern Europe’s shining city on the Danube

Day 55 BUDAPEST
The Pearl of the Danube in the Heart of Europe CLASSIC Enjoy a Guided City Sightseeing, including the iconic Heroes’ Square. Take in the beauty of Budapest while enjoying a free afternoon exploring such famous sights as the Chain Bridge. Get to know the city’s cafés and pubs, and don’t miss the unique Christmas markets that Budapest hosts every year during the Festive season
Meal Icon Breakfast

Day 56 BUDAPEST (EMBARKATION)
Time for Coffee, and Confections With a free day to explore before your cruise, take time to take photographs on the Royal Palace grounds in this treasure trove of historical architecture. Enjoy the warmth and glow of Christmas tradition before boarding your Suite Ship®. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VIENNA
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Day 57 VIENNA, AUSTRIA
Vienna Waltzes and the Beautiful Blue Danube Enjoy sailing the Danube, which shares dozens of miles with Hungary and Slovakia. Relax on the Sky Deck to see the rolling landscape and red-rooftops of the Slovakian capital of Bratislava come into view. DISCOVERY Enjoy an Austrian Cookie Tasting while sailing to Vienna. This evening in Vienna, you may choose to join an Optional Excursion to attend a Royal Waltz Concert for an unforgettable evening of music in an elegant hall. OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN VIENNA
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Day 58 VIENNA
Royal Collections, Amusing Attractions, and Culinary Confections CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of Vienna to see the Imperial Palace complex—the winter residence of the Imperial family, OR: DISCOVERY Join a Guided Culinary Tour of Vienna’s magical Christmas Advent Markets to sample Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel. Join a Guided Optional Excursion to Schönbrunn Palace—a Habsburg Empire summer home for 300 years. Spend free time on your own to enjoy the Christkindlesmarkt, or relax by the fire’s glow in a Viennese café this evening. Later, relax on board with live entertainment. OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO KREMS
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Day 59 KREMS
Christmas Markets in the Austria’s Wine Country CLASSIC Join a Guided Walk to explore this small valley town, seemingly untouched by the new world. In your free time perhaps try some roasted chestnuts, one of the most popular treats at the Christmas market. During lunchtime sail through the picturesque Wachau Valley to Melk. MELK Ornate Architecture and Scenic Splendors CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of Melk’s magnificent Benedictine Abbey to marvel at its frescoed ceilings, statues, incredible library, and ornate pipe organ. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO PASSAU
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Day 60 PASSAU, GERMANY
Go for Baroque in Passau–Where the Danube, Inn, and Ilz Rivers meet CLASSIC Join a Guided City Walk to learn more about this beautiful “City of Three Rivers”. Alternatively, join a full day Guided Optional Excursion to Salzburg—the city of Mozart and learn how Austrians celebrate Christmas. Meet your ship back in Passau after your selected activities for sailing. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO REGENSBURG
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Day 61 REGENSBURG
Magical Regensburg—Bavaria’s Medieval Miracle CLASSIC Join a Guided City Walk and see Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall) and Porta Pretoria—built in 179 AD as the entrance to Castra Regina fortress. DISCOVERY Enjoy a Christmas Traditions Lecture on board while sailing this afternoon. DISCOVERY Later, indulge in a Beer Tasting on board. This evening, enjoy live entertainment after dinner as you cruise toward Nuremberg. AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO NUREMBERG
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Day 62 NUREMBERG
Living Heritage and History Lessons CLASSIC Choose a Guided Sightseeing of Nuremberg—with its medieval architecture, gilded fountain, gothic cathedral, and Kaiserburg Castle, OR; CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of the historic Nuremberg Rally Grounds—used by the Third Reich. Spend free time on your own to browse the spruce stalls of the Christmas Markets of Nuremberg. Sample favorite Bavarian fare—from dozens of bratwurst varieties, gingerbread, mulled blueberry wine, and countless other culinary delights of the Christkindlmarkt OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG
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Day 63 NUREMBERG. EXCURSION TO MUNICH
CLASSIC Enjoy a Guided City Tour which will show you the highlights of fascinating Munich. See Nymphenburg Palace—a former residence of Bavarian monarchs, along with the Old and New Town Halls of Marienplatz. OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG
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Day 64 NUREMBERG
Living Heritage and History Lessons A day to relax and enjoy Nuremberg at your own pace. Stroll through the festively lit streets, buy those last-minute Christmas gifts, or ask your Cruise Director for suggestions of things to do. Later, enjoy live entertainment on board EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BAMBERG
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Day 65 BAMBERG
Cherished Christmas Customs and Cradle Scenes CLASSIC Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Bamberg—medieval home of Germany’s Roman Empire dynasties. Stroll through dozens of Bamberg’s nativity scenes—from miniature to life-size. Take free time to enjoy the quaint Christmas markets, and warm up with traditional German dumplings, sausage, and a glass of hearty Bavarian ale. DISCOVERY Enjoy an onboard Christmas Traditions Lecture while sailing. AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO WÜRZBURG
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Day 66 WÜRZBURG
Ornaments, Old Saint Nicholas, and Nutcrackers Sweet CLASSIC Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the “Pearl of the Romantic Road” with its Old Main Bridge, towering fortress, and baroque Bishop’s Residence. You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to the beautiful Bavarian town of Rothenburg. Visit the Käthe Wohlfahrt German Christmas museum—the world’s most extensive collection of traditional German Christmas decorations. Spend free time enjoying the festive, warm glow of Wurzburg’s Christmas markets. Later, enjoy live entertainment on board EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MAIN RIVER VILLAGE
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Day 67 MAIN RIVER VILLAGE
Hidden Gifts and Holiday Delights CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of a picturesque village along the Main River. DISCOVERY Join a Cookie-Baking Demonstration on board your ship while sailing. AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO FRANKFURT
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Day 68 FRANKFURT. EXCURSION TO RUDESHEIM
Eat, Drink, and Be Merry in Wine Country CLASSIC Tour the incredible Mechanical Music Museum for a one-of-a-kind instrumental experience in Rüdesheim. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO SPEYER
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Day 69 EXCURSION TO HEIDELBERG. SPEYER.
Winter Wonders and a Wine Barrel Fit for a King CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour that includes the magnificent Heidelberg Castle and the Great Vat—the world’s largest wine barrel. After the tour, visit the local German Christmas markets in Heidelberg. Explore at your own pace to soak up the sights and sounds, tantalizing treats, and seasonal handiwork of Speyer Christmas markets. This evening, enjoy live entertainment on board EVENING/OVERNIGHT TO STRASBOURG
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Day 70 STRASBOURG, FRANCE
A Gothic Cathedral, Heaven’s Time, and Joyeux Noël CLASSIC Come along for City Sightseeing, including the city’s gothic, stained-glass cathedral with its celebrated ancient murals and astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France District. You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to beautiful Alsace, for an afternoon in a French wine-country village. Savor the warmth and glow of Christmas tradition by spending your free time this afternoon wandering the French winter markets of Strasbourg. Take in the lights, music, and the pleasures of the season. EVENING CRUISE TO BREISACH
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Day 71 BREISACH, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO BLACK FOREST
History, Artistry, and the Beautiful Black Forest DISCOVERY Visit to Badische Winzerkeller, the largest German wine producer in Europe. Discover Germany’s southernmost wine country in Baden—ideally situated between the hills of the Black Forest and the Rhine River. Learn about the vintners’ process in the vineyards here, and enjoy a wine tasting, OR: DISCOVERY Join a Guided Tour to the magical Black Forest to experience local traditions and the vibrant Christmas mood. You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to visit the charming village of Colmar, with its half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings, and enjoy the warmth and glow of the Christmas season. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BASEL
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Day 72 BASEL, SWITZERLAND (DISEMBARKATION)
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. Flights should not leave Zürich airport before 10 am or Basel airport before 8 am.

Accommodations

BudapestBudapestBudapestBudapestZurich
Hilton
Deluxe

Hotel as shown or similar

Hess Andras Ter 1-3 Budapest Hungary

Unwind at Hilton Budapest hotel, which boasts the beautiful Baroque façade of a 16th century Jesuit College and a 13th century Dominican Churchyard. Take in captivating views across historic Budapest - the Hungarian Parliament and River Danube - re-energize in the 24-hour fitness center, or keep fit on the jogging track. Luxuriate with a massage or unwind in the sauna. Marvel at ancient relics, situated in the hotel's restored Dominican cloister. Lounge in the lobby bar and admire breathtaking views, or savor authentic Hungarian and Mediterranean flavors in ICON Restaurant.
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