Day 1 Arrive In Vienna, Austria (Embarkation)
Welcome to Vienna, Austria’s romantic capital! This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at a welcome reception. (Dinner)
Day 2 Vienna
Once the center of the mighty Habsburg Empire, Austria’s capital has much to offer: the lavish Hofburg Palace, the impressive Vienna Opera House, majestic Ring Boulevard, and awe-inspiring St. Stephen’s Cathedral, to name just a few of the sights you will enjoy on your city tour. You do not rush through Vienna—you waltz, taking your time to savor each classic sight and sound. Shop in the Kärntnerstrasse and enjoy Sachertorte or Apfelstrudel in a neighborhood café. Soak up the atmosphere of the Adventszeit (Advent season) and spend some time at the beautiful Christmas markets located throughout the city. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 3 Dürnstein–Melk
This morning, enjoy a guided walk around Dürnstein, known for the magnificent baroque Stiftskirche with its blue façade. After lunch, visit the magnificent BENEDICTINE ABBEY, which dominates the town of Melk from its commanding hill site and is one of Europe’s largest monasteries. The view from the terrace over the Danube and surrounding countryside is breathtaking! This evening you’ll sample some of the FAMOUS WINES of the region. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 4 Linz–Passau, Germany
Linz, Austria’s third-largest town, lies on both banks of the Danube and is an important industrial town and busy river port. An optional full-day excursion to Salzburg takes in the popular Sound of Music sights as well as more Christmas cheer—the traditional carols, the sparkling lights, and the smell of candles and gingerbread. Passau, ideally located at the confluence of the Inn, Ilz, and Danube Rivers, is a city of graceful arcades and cobblestone streets. St. Stephen’s Cathedral houses one of the world’s largest organs with more than 17,000 pipes. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 5 Regensburg
Regensburg is one of Germany’s best preserved medieval cities. Architectural highlights on your guided tour include the Old Town Hall and the Porta Pretoria–gates to an ancient Roman fort built in 179 AD. The city is the capital of Upper Palatinate, a bustling university town, and one of Bavaria’s cultural centers. The Christmas market is located on the historic market square. Germany is famous for its sausages, and Regensburg is home to the country’s oldest restaurant—Historische Wurstküche (the Old Sausage Kitchen), dating back to the 12th century. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 6 Nuremberg
Although Nuremberg suffered extensive damage during WWII, much of it was restored to its original style. Marvel at this historic city with its fabulous gothic churches and elegant patrician houses, all explained by a local expert. Nuremberg hosts Germany’s most famous Christmas market, which dates back to 1628; the Old Town is illuminated with festive lights and decorations. The city’s traditions include famous Lebkuchen, toy making, and metal working. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 7 Nuremberg. Excursion to Munich
After breakfast, drive to Munich, where a local expert will proudly show you the sights of the Bavarian capital. An inspiring mix of historic buildings and impressive architecture, you’ll see the Olympic Stadium, 1,000-foot-high Television Tower, Nymphenburg Palace, MARIENPLATZ in the historic heart of the city with the Old and New Town Halls, and the gothic Frauenkirche. Later, there’s free time to explore on your own. The traditional Christmas market is located on the Marienplatz, with aromas of toasted almonds, roasted chestnuts, and gingerbread filling the air and the strains of alpine Christmas music coming from the town hall. At the nearby Rindermarkt, you’ll find the Kripperlmarkt, one of the largest markets in Germany to specialize in mangers and other nativity accessories. And don’t leave Munich without paying a visit to the famous Hofbräuhaus for a stein of beer! Return to your ship in the late afternoon. (Breakfast, Dinner)
Day 8 Nuremberg
A day to relax and enjoy Nuremberg at your own pace. Stroll through the festively lit streets, write those last-minute postcards, or ask your Cruise Director for suggestions of things to do. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 9 Bamberg
Medieval Bamberg is a beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site. The World Heritage List includes over 800 properties with cultural and/or natural heritage of global significanceYour walking tour takes in its breathtaking cathedral, the Old Town Hall straddling the Regnitz River, and serpentine streets with charming houses and 18th-century mansions. At this time of year the town is decked out for Christmas. Especially interesting are the many nativity scenes that are built by local citizens and exhibited throughout the town. Today we’ll introduce you to some of Germany’s FAMOUS BEERS! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 10 Würzburg
Known as the “Pearl of the Romantic Road,” Würzburg is surrounded by sloping hills covered with vineyards. The magnificent BISHOP’S RESIDENZ is another UNESCO World Heritage Site. The World Heritage List includes over 800 properties with cultural and/or natural heritage of global significanceThis afternoon is free to explore more of the city and wander through the beautifully decorated wooden booths of the Christmas market, at your own pace. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 11 Wertheim–Miltenberg
This morning, stop in Wertheim, whose overlapping half-timbered houses are grouped along winding streets. Glassblowers have a long tradition in this town and, especially in winter, they produce ornaments that hang on Christmas trees all over the world. Marvel at the tasteful Christmas decorations in the shop windows and stroll through the charming Christmas market. In Miltenberg, you’ll discover a picturesque Bavarian village that thrived on income from river traffic. Its cultural wealth and affluence are reflected in the beautiful medieval and renaissance houses and the gothic splendor of the Merchant Hall shown to you during your guided walk. The town center is within walking distance of the ship, as is the Christmas market. Before lunch, learn how to bake a local SOFT COOKIE specialty. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 12 Frankfurt (Disembarkation)
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. Departure flight should not leave before 8:30 am. (Breakfast)
- CRUISE: 11-night cruise from Vienna to Frankfurt in an outside stateroom with hotel-style beds
- VIENNA: Welcome reception; guided sightseeing
- DÜRNSTEIN: Walking tour, see the Stiftskirche
- MELK: Guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey; wine tasting
- PASSAU: Guided walk
- REGENSBURG: Walking tour
- NUREMBERG: Guided sightseeing
- MUNICH: Guided sightseeing
- BAMBERG: Guided sightseeing, see the Old Town Hall; beer tasting
- WÜRZBURG: Guided sightseeing, visit the Bishop’s Residenz
- MILTENBERG: Guided walk; baking demonstration
All This Included
Celebrate the Christmas season on this spectacular river cruise vacation from Vienna to Frankfurt. Your journey begins with guided sightseeing, time at the beautiful Christmas markets, and your ship embarkation in magical Vienna. On to Dürnstein for a guided walk and to take pictures of the elegant baroque Stiftskirche, to Melk for wine tasting and to visit its magnificent Benedictine Abbey, and to delightful Passau. Also spend time in medieval Regensburg, in Nuremberg with Germany’s most famous Christmas market, in the Bavarian capital of Munich, and in charming Bamberg for beer tasting. Other highlights: Würzburg to visit the Bishop’s Residenz. Wertheim to see the half-timbered houses and shop for blown-glass ornaments, and Miltenberg for a traditional baking demonstration. This year, don’t just celebrate the holidays the same way you always do. Instead, join this festive cruise vacation and experience traditional Christmas markets throughout Austria and Germany. Let your senses come alive as you smell the aromas, sample the tasty treats, listen to the holiday music and cheer, and shop for colorful Christmas decorations throughout the markets.
- Included shore excursions with Local Guide.
- Headsets for shore excursions.
- Daily early- and late-riser breakfast.
- Full buffet breakfast with sparkling wine.
- Complimentary juices with breakfast.
- Complimentary soft drinks with lunch.
- Complimentary regional wines at dinner.
- Free soft drinks or beer with dinner.
- English-speaking crew.
Accommodations on this Tour
Outside cabin onboard the Avalon Vista
- Cabin upgrades are available.
- In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
- 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.
- Port charges: $198.
- Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions
The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package, at the price quoted.