Your journey begins in the vibrant city of Budapest, the capital of Hungary and one of Europe’s oldest and prettiest cities.
This afternoon, board your all-inclusive luxury Scenic Space-Ship and settle into your suite. Balcony suites have windows that convert into a Scenic Sun Lounge, allowing you fresh air and uninterrupted views of ever-changing landscapes and life along the riverbanks. Relax and raise your glass to the days ahead at this evening’s welcome reception.
Divided by the Danube, with Buda on one side and Pest on the other, this city became united in 1873 when a newly built bridge connected the two. The city is an architectural treasure trove comprising styles from Gothic to Art Nouveau and everything in between. It is also well known for its hot springs and thermal baths and has a vibrant nightlife scene.
A range of Scenic Freechoice activities are on offer to choose from this morning:
Budapest in Depth: Explore this magical city by coach. Visit both Buda and Pest, the two districts that are separated by the Danube that make up the city. Starting on the Buda side see the Várkert Bazár before crossing the Margaret Bridge to the Pest side where you will see Széchenyi square and Elizabeth square. End your tour with a mesmerising piano recital at the Institute for the Blind.
Budapest’s Past & Present: This walking and coach tour will give insight on Budapest’s communist past and life today as part of the European Union, including the 1956 Hungarian revolution and the significant Jewish events that have shaped modern culture.
City Tour and Hospital in the Rock: Start your coach tour with a visit to Gellert Hill for magnificent views across the city, followed by a tour of Budapest. See the Fisherman’s Bastion and Matthias Church before visiting the Hospital in the Rock – a former top-secret nuclear bunker and emergency hospital.
Thermal Baths: Budapest is known for its thermal waters and today you can relax in the natural hot springs at Gellert Baths. The baths are said to have medicinal properties and are warm year-round allowing for a luxurious soak no matter what the season.
Guided hike to Buda Hill: Strap on your walking shoes for a beautiful hike up to the World Heritage-listed site of Buda Hill. On your walk, see Matthias Church and walk to the Fisherman’s Bastion, all while enjoying great views over the Danube River and the city landscape.
This afternoon is at leisure. Perhaps you may like to hop on board Scenics e-bikes (electronically assisted bicycles) to explore the city on two wheels or find one of the city’s famous ruin bars – housed in abandoned buildings – to enjoy an afternoon drink. Alternatively, make your way back to your luxury Space-Ship to relax in the Panorama Lounge & Bar. You will set sail for Vienna later this afternoon.
Today, perhaps wake to a coffee delivered to your suite by your personal butler. Be sure to download the Scenic Tailormade App to listen to river commentary and gain insight into the villages and sites you’re passing as you relax on board while cruising to the Austrian capital.
Vienna oozes charm with magnificent Baroque buildings, ample green spaces from parks to vineyards, a vibrant coffee-house culture and masterpiece-filled galleries and museums.
Tonight’s Scenic Enrich:
Classical concert at Palais Liechtenstein : Breathe in the opulence and luxury of Palais Liechtenstein this evening as you relish an exclusive private classical concert. Enjoy a glass of fine Austrian Sekt and listen to the timeless music of Strauss and Mozart performed by a renowned orchestra. An experience only shared with your fellow Scenic guests, you’ll be seated in Vienna’s largest secular baroque hall, an ornate space where royals and nobles have sat for centuries. Accompanied by ballet dancers and vocalists and surrounded by world-famous art, this will be a concert that you’ll remember for a lifetime.
Wake this morning with Vienna on your doorstep. A city full of grandeur, Austria’s imperial capital is famous for having the world’s most beautiful boulevard, The Ringstrasse, and for the legacy of the Habsburg monarchy. Also known as the City of Music, Vienna fostered the musical geniuses Mozart and Beethoven, among others. Sigmund Freud also lived and worked here in the late 19th century.
Explore your way with a selection from todays Scenic Freechoice activities:
Schonbrunn Palace: Explore Schönbrunn Palace, the former summer residence of the Habsburg family, one of the most prominent dynasties in European history. Wander its countless ornately designed rooms, hear tales about the royal family that lives here and see the impressive gardens.
Cycle to Danube Island: Explore a different side of Vienna on a guided e-bike tour to Danube Island, a recreational playground where locals come to enjoy bathing, boating, cycling and relaxing on its beaches and open spaces.
Central Vienna exploration: The city centre of Vienna is overflowing with history, elegance and diverse architecture. During this tour, your expert local guide will delight you with stories from the city before allowing you extended free time to explore as you wish.
Excursion to Bratislava: Take a coach to Bratislava, Slovakia’s capital since independence in 1993. Bratislava is a modern multicultural metropolis with an intriguing history. Its Old Town is glorious in medieval and Gothic architecture and its well-preserved hilltop castle, which has history dating back to the 9th century, still dominates the town. These charming historic sites contrast with its brutalist socialist architecture, which is evident around the city. Take a tour with a local guide to see Bratislava Castle, the Hlavné Námestie, the main square and the Old Town Hall.
Dürnstein > Melk
Your Scenic Space-Ship will dock early this morning in the quaint town of Dürnstein. Surrounded by vineyards, the city has historical buildings that date back to the 12th century, including the hilltop ruins of Dürnstein Castle, where Richard the Lionheart was famously imprisoned between 1192 and 1193. Enjoy some free time exploring this charming town before cruising towards Melk.
Today offers a variety of Scenic Freechoice excursions to choose from:
E-biking from Durnstein to Melk: Embark on a 32km guided e-bike ride to soak up the scenery along the Danube as you cycle to the quaint village of Melk, located in Austria’s scenic Wachau Valley. Built high over the city, the breathtaking World Heritage-listed Benedictine Abbey is the most spectacular building in the region. You’ll pass by small villages and through rolling vineyards, stopping along the way to enjoy the river views.
Glorious Melk Abbey: Your visit to Melk will only be complete with a guided tour to its magnificent 18th century Benedictine Abbey. Wander its 900-year-old hallowed halls, visit the decorated Marble Hall and the library, which is filled with more than 80,000 books, and be awed by the Abbey Church, adorned in frescoes and intricate statues.
Fairy tales of Burg Aggstein: Visit Burg Aggstein, a ruined castle that sits high above the Danube River, 480 metres above sea level. Take a guided tour of this remarkable piece of history, which dates to the 12th century, and enjoy coffee and cake at the castle.
After your tour, you will return to the luxury of your Space-Ship.
Salzburg or Cesky Krumlov
Today, choose from two completely different, yet equally fascinating full day Scenic Freechoice excursions.
Full day excursion to Salzburg: This morning you will disembark your Scenic Space-Ship in Brandstatt, from here drive via coach to the beautiful city of Salzburg, Austria. Surrounded by alpine peaks and on the banks of the Salzach River, Salzburg is best known as the home of Mozart and The Sound of Music. This storybook city has a thriving art scene, music and concert halls filled with classical music, a Baroque old town where you’ll find Mozart’s birthplace, and Hohensalzburg, Central Europe’s largest intact fortress, which sits high above the rooftops with panoramic views of the city. During a guided tour, explore this incredible city before enjoying lunch at a local restaurant and some free time at your leisure. You will return to your Scenic Space-Ship in the German city of Passau.
Full day excursion to Cesky Krumlov: From Brandstatt, journey via coach to the Czech town of Cesky Krumlov. This delightful World Heritage-listed town is brimming with charm. Sitting on the banks of the Vltava River, Cesky Krumlov is considered one of the best-preserved medieval towns in Europe with its vast array of well-preserved Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture. Wander this fairy-tale location with your local guide and explore the historic centre before delighting in a delicious lunch at a local restaurant and some time at leisure.
You will arrive in Regensburg after lunch, so this morning offers a great opportunity to relax and rejuvenate in the Salt Therapy lounge, located on the Jewel Deck.
Boasting a staggering 2,000-year history, Regensburg has one of Germany’s best preserved medieval town centres, with more than 900 of its Romanesque and Gothic buildings listed as World Heritage sites. Within its narrow laneways, the city lays claim to having the highest concentration of bars in the country. Regensburg is also fringed by the Bavarian Forest, home to hundreds of kilometres of hiking trails and deer, wild boar, fox and otter.
Today, Regensburg offers up a selection of Scenic Freechoice touring activities to choose from:
Walking tour of Regensburg: On the confluence of three rivers in Bavaria, Regensburg is known as the best-preserved medieval city in Germany. Guests will join a walking tour with a local guide to see the old stone bridge, the Church of St James, and the Porta Praetoria.
Cycling to Walhalla: Join a guided bike tour through the wonderful scenery of the Donau Valley. You will ride for approximately 60 minutes along the riverside and through countryside to Walhalla. Reached by 358 steps, this memorial is considered the most important of all works commissioned by King Ludwig l of Bavaria, a Parthenon-like structure built to commemorate distinguished people in German history.
Weltenburg Abbey: Take a ferry through the Danube Gorge to Weltenburg Abbey, the oldest monastery in Bavaria, founded by monks in approximately 600AD. Explore the Abbey and Cloister Church, then sample the award-winning beer produced on site, which has been produced here since the year 1050 making it the oldest monastic brewery in the world.
Thurn and Taxis Active Walking Tour: Join an active walking tour from the ship to Thurn und Taxis Castle, where you’ll enjoy a guided tour followed by free time. Thurn und Taxis is a German noble family who can trace their history back to the 12th century.
You will arrive in Nuremberg, Bavaria’s second-largest city, early this morning. Boasting an Old Town protected by an ancient city wall, where the most enchanting Christmas Markets are held every year, this city is dominated by one of the most significant imperial forts of the Holy Roman Empire, the 12th century Imperial Castle, which was the preferred residence of German kings.
Behind its charming façade, Nuremberg also has a turbulent history. During WWII, the city was favoured by the Nazis for party rallies, the boycotts of Jewish businesses began here, as did the laws that denied Jewish people German citizenship – known as the ‘Nuremberg Laws’. By 1945, the city was reduced to rubble, including large sections of the Imperial Castle and Old Town. Allied powers – the US, Great Britain, France and the Soviet Union – held the Nuremberg Trials here between 1945 and 1946, when Nazi Germany leaders were tried for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Make your choice from this morning’s Scenic Freechoice experiences:
Walking tour of the Old Town: You will drive into Nuremberg’s city centre, passing by the city walls and courthouse before arriving at Augustinerstrasse. From here, your local guide will take you on a walking tour of Nuremberg to see the Imperial Castle, which overlooks the city, St. Egidien’s Church and the market square.
The trials and tribulations of WWII Tour: Join your local guide and learn about the horrific events that occurred in Nuremberg during Germany’s Nazi regime. Start by taking a drive to the Rally Grounds and explore the Memorium Nurnberger Prozesse, where subsequent trials of Nazi party members took place.
Nurembergs Castle and City Walls: The historic city of Nuremberg is yours to explore during this active walking tour. Explore the cobblestone streets surrounding the Imperial castle and admire the impressive city walls that remain since medieval times.
This afternoon you will sail towards Bamberg. Sip on a specialty tea or coffee in the Panorama Lounge & Bar or join a lecture to gain insight into the history and culture along the river.
Built on seven hills, this World Heritage-listed town has surprises at every turn. Intersected by rivers and canals, enchanting Bamberg has an Old Town resplendent with cobblestoned streets and well-preserved medieval buildings. A charming Old Town Hall which occupies an island on its own, a Gothic and Romanesque-style cathedral and the Old and New Residences – comprising an episcopal palace, a pretty ‘Little Venice’ and a 12th century castle that teeters on the highest of the seven hills – are some of the incredible places you’ll see during your guided city tour.
Stay in Bamberg or choose to explore further afield with this morning’s Scenic Freechoice:
Bamberg Old Town Tour: Bamberg is known for its charming World Heritage-listed Old Town, one of Europe’s largest intact old town centres. Learn about its fascinating history as you wander through stunning Medieval and Baroque buildings on a guided city tour.
Excursion to Coburg: Journey via coach to Coburg. The city overlooked by an impressive castle, often considered one of the largest and best-preserved forts in Germany. Visit the castle which now houses a fascinating museum showcasing a large collection of carriages, weapons, armoury and paintings by many renowned artists.
Back on board your Space-Ship, you may wish to spend time in the wellness centre with a soothing massage^.
After a leisurely morning on board your Space-Ship, you will arrive in Würzburg. This Baroque city straddles the Main River in the heart of Franconian wine country. Surrounded by undulating vineyards, Würzburg is home to a World Heritage-listed palace, a dominating hilltop fortress, the 15th century Old Main Bridge, and three universities, including Bavaria’s oldest.
Spend your day at your preferred pace with one of the following Scenic Freechoice options:
Guided city tour & Würzburg Residence: A short transfer via coach is needed to get to the Würzburg Residence, a Baroque palace surrounded by manicured gardens. Upon arrival, guests will be taken on a guided tour of the palace to see its most beautiful rooms, many of which feature valuable paintings, tapestries and period furniture. Afterwards, take a short stroll into the city, where you will have some free time. Explore the shopping area and the many coffee houses, pubs and restaurants; if you’re feeling energetic, you can climb up to Marienberg Fortress.
Romantic Road to Rothenburg: From Würzburg drive by coach to Rothenburg along the so-called Romantic Road, an important trading route during the Middle Ages. Your guide will regale you with the history and legends of some of the towns and villages you pass, some of which are more than 1,000 years old. Take a guided tour in Rothenburg, famous for its well-preserved medieval old town, to see the Gothic and Renaissance City Hall as well as the famous City Councillors’ Tavern, where various clocks will show you the legendary story of the “Master Draught”. After the guided walking tour, you will have free time to discover the city on your own.
Wertheim - Miltenberg
This morning you will arrive in the historic town of Wertheim, sitting on the picturesque banks of the Main and Tauber Rivers.
You have a diverse range of Scenic Freechoice excursions to choose from today:
Wertheim tour and winery: Start your day in Wertheim, an historic town filled with half-timbered houses. Enjoy an orientation tour and some free time to wander around town before being transferred to a local winery. Here you will meet the winemaker to gain an understanding of how wine is produced in this region of Germany.
Gamburg Castle tour: Transfer to the town of Gamburg where we will have a guided tour of Gamburg Castle. Here you will also meet the Baron and Baroness for a private reception and learn about their modern aristocratic life over a glass of sparkling wine.
Miltenberg tour and local farm visit: Visit a local farm where you will meet the friendly family who own and operate the property. Gain an understanding of daily farm life, see the animals and sample some of the local delicacies produced on site. Afterwards, transfer to the town of Miltenberg, where you will enjoy an orientation tour and free time.
Schnapps tasting: After an orientation tour and free time in Miltenberg, visit a local Schnapps distiller to understand how this fruit brandy is produced. Enjoy a tasting of the multiple flavours and free time in this delightful location.
E-bike ride from Miltenberg to Wertheim: Cycle along this beautiful stretch of the river from the half-timbered town of Miltenberg to the fairy-tale town of Wertheim. Stop for refreshments while enjoying the spectacular views along the Main River.
After touring, you will embark your luxury Space-Ship in Wertheim am Main and set sail for Rüdesheim. Enjoy some of the all-inclusive on board entertainment this evening as you sail through the night.
Rüdesheim > Rhine Gorge
This morning you will disembark in Rüdesheim, a pretty town surrounded by steep vineyards that have been cultivating wine for a staggering two millennia. The charming town centre is filled with half-timbered houses lining cobbled streets, quaint shops selling trinkets such as cuckoo clocks, as well as a smattering of wine taverns and open-air beer gardens.
Select one of this morning’s Scenic Freechoice tours:
Siegfrieds Musikkabinett & Cable Car: Take a mini train from the pier to Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum, where some 350 musical instruments from the 18th and 19th century play themselves for your enjoyment. Then board a return cable car that soars over the vineyards to a hilltop where the historic Neiderwald Monument stands. This 17th century statue was built to commemorate the unification of Germany.
Hike & Cable Car: Join a local guide for a hike through the rolling vineyards of Rüdesheim, a wine region famous for its Riesling, and enjoy spectacular views of the countryside and Rhine River below. After your hike, board the cable car to return to town.
E-bike ride to Schloss Johannisberg: Hop on an e-bike and get your heart racing with a cycling journey towards the beautiful estate of Schloss Johannisberg. Your route will take you through the stunning vines overlooking the Rhine River and your destination provides you spectacular views of the surrounding landscape.
This afternoon, relax on board the Sun Deck and admire the scenic landscapes as you cruise along the spectacular World Heritage-listed Rhine Gorge in the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, a 65-kilometre stretch of the river that is dotted with some 40 hilltop castles and fortresses that span a period of 1,000 years. Sailing down this section of the river is like being transported through the pages of a fairy tale book.
The Rhine is abounded in myths and legends; folklore that has been passed on for generations, including the story of Lorelei. This enchanting female was betrayed by her sweetheart and spent her days bewitching men. As her punishment, she was sent to a nunnery, however on her way she jumped to her death in the river. Legend has her spirit casting spells on sailors who passed the rock, where a bronze statue sits today.
Tonights Scenic Enrich
Classical Concert in the Beethoven Room at La Redoute recital hall
Attend a lavish dinner and classical concert where live music from Beethoven and Mozart will be played in the spectacular La Redoute recital hall in Germany’s former capital, Bonn. Built by the last Elector of Cologne in 1792, this beautiful hall has hosted many important dignitaries over the centuries, including the Queen, Princess Diana and multiple US Presidents. Tonight, this elegant venue is just for you.
You will arrive in Cologne today, a city known for its liberal and laidback lifestyle, its unique beer culture, auto industry and the jaw-dropping cathedral that dominates its skyline. Settled by the Romans, this major cultural centre for the Rhineland was built during the Middle Ages but was largely destroyed during WWII. The magnificent Gothic cathedral, an enormous World Heritage-listed site that dates to 1248, was badly damaged but stood tall above the ruins of the city.
Today, choose one of the following Scenic Freechoice experiences:
Walking tour: Discover Cologne on a walking tour. Wander the laneways of the historical Old Town, which is home to breweries serving up draft Kolsch beer and enjoy free time to visit the citys centrepiece and icon, Cologne Cathedral.
Cycling tour: Using Scenic’s e-bikes, join an active paced ride along the Rhine river through the city of Cologne. Admire the picturesque waterfront, the ornate bridges that straddle the river and see the icon of the city, the World Heritage-listed Cathedral.
Guided Cologne Cathedral tour: The Cologne Cathedral, or Kolner Dom, as it is known locally, is the largest Gothic Church in northern Europe and features twin towers that stand 157 metres tall. Join a local guide who will take you through this magnificent World Heritage-listed site and learn its fascinating history as well as some quirky facts, including the legend that the cathedral is the final resting place of the bones of the three wise men from the Bible.
Past and present tour of Cologne: Join your local guide and learn about Colognes fascinating heritage from Roman times to its Jewish heritage before gaining an understanding of how the city is developing into the future.
Amsterdam is a treasure trove of architectural beauty, masterpiece-filled galleries, tranquil scenes of boats putting along 16th century canals, narrow cobbled laneways filled with boutiques and cafes, and streets busy with cyclists criss-crossing their way about town. Often referred to as the Venice of the North, much of the World Heritage-listed canal system exists today as it did hundreds of years ago, lined with well-preserved canal houses and intersected by charming bridges.
This morning, choose one of the following Scenic Freechoice:
Canal cruise: Amsterdam has more than 100 kilometres of canals and today you will see some the prettiest sights of the city from these historical waterways. This one-hour cruise takes you along the Gentleman’s Canal, where you will see The Skinny Bridge, and The Prince’s Canal, which was known for its warehouses. You will go past the Old Lord Mayor’s House, The Seven Bridges, Anne Frank’s House and head to the Brewer’s Canal. As the historic centre glides past, you can admire the elegant merchant’s residences, churches and warehouses, dating from the Golden Age.
City walking tour: Explore the Dutch capital on foot and see the citys highlights while tasting delicious local treats. Pickled herring, a favourite street food, tasty cheeses and mouth-watering Poffertjes (traditional fluffy bite-sized pancakes) are some delicacies youll savour
Cycling tour: Take a small ferry to the outskirts of the city for a biking tour. Amsterdam is known as the bicycle capital of the world, with more bikes than cars and over 35,000 kilometres of cycle paths. Your local guide will be at hand to offer information about everyday life of the Dutch people, many of whom you will see getting around on two wheels. Hop on one of Scenic’s complimentary eco-friendly e-bikes (electronically assisted bicycles) and let it do the hard work for you as you take in the sights of the region.
Excursion to Schermerhorn & Alkmaar: Step outside of Amsterdam to visit the village of Schermerhorn, home to authentic windmills dating back to the 16th century. Take in the idyllic views of the sweeping Dutch countryside and learn about the importance of the windmills. You will also head to Alkmaar, a charming town with historic buildings and picturesque canals, also known as ‘the city of cheese’.
Amsterdam > Paris
Travel by high-speed train to Paris and spend three nights at one of our centrally located hotels.
It’s your first morning in Paris, so why not start the day with a pain au chocolat and a café au lait? Paris is a city that has been immortalised in endless movies, TV shows, books and paintings, so even if you’re a first-time visitor you will feel like you already know it. Its elegant streets, grand buildings, shady parks, stylish cafes and even more stylish residents, you’ll quickly be swept up in the joie de vivre.
Today’s Scenic Freechoice:
Panoramic city tour: Marvel at the city’s most famous sites on this interesting and engaging tour, taking in the Eiffel Tower, Champs Elysees, Arc de Triomphe and more. You’ll learn what makes Paris so magical and why it’s one of the world’s most visited cities.
Explore Bohemian Paris: The Montmartre district of Paris is known for its Bohemian spirit, home to artists, writers and rumours of debauchery. Explore this fascinating quarter and discover a hidden winery tucked away in the streets behind Sacre-Coeur.
This afternoon, discover the part of Paris that most inspires you. Perhaps you would like to visit one of the legendary art galleries, like The Louvre, Musée d’Orsay or Centre Pomidou. Splash some cash at the flagship boutiques of the world’s best designer labels or hunt out a treasure at one of the city’s vintage stores and flea markets. Then there’s the food; you could spend the whole afternoon (and more) at the patisseries, boulangeries, fromageries and bistros that line every street. Then pick up some supplies and retreat to one of the many elegant parks for a classic Parisian picnic.
Today is yours to enjoy, with a full day to explore Paris.
Discover some of the city’s most famous districts, like the charming Latin Quarter, the modern La Défense, the Neoclassical Place Vendôme or the fashionable Le Marais. Visit one of the excellent museums, like the Musée des Arts et Métiers, the world’s oldest science museum dating back to 1794, or the Musée Carnavalet, which charts the history of Paris from the Gauls to the 20th century. You could plan a literary tour of the city, taking in the favourite writing spots of Victor Hugo, Oscar Wilde, Ernest Hemingway and Simone de Beauvoir. And of course there are endless options for shopping, art galleries, historic sites or eating and drinking.
Or you might like to do as the French do and embrace the ‘art of doing nothing’. The French word flâneur means to wander aimlessly through a city with no destination in mind. It’s a relaxed way to soak in the sights and mingle with the locals, stopping for coffee or a glass of wine when you feel like it or perhaps browsing in an appealing bookstore or gallery. It’s one of the most enjoyable ways to spend a day and gives you a real feel for life in Paris.
Say ‘au revoir’ to Paris this morning. Take time for a final indulgent breakfast at the hotel or perhaps stop for a coffee at the legendary Café de la Paix, a Paris institution that has occupied a prime spot in the Place de l’Opera since 1862. You’ll then be transferred to the airport or train station to begin your journey home.
This itinerary is a guide only and may be amended for operational reasons such as high and low water. As such, the cruise may operate altered from that stated above. Please refer to our terms and conditions.