Day 1 Arrive in Frankfurt, Germany (Embarkation)
Flights must arrive before 3:30 pm. Welcome to Frankfurt! Situated on the River Main, Frankfurt is a truly cosmopolitan city and the commercial capital of Germany. This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at a welcome reception. (Dinner)
Day 2 Miltenberg–Wertheim
Miltenberg is 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. After lunch, learn how to bake a local SOFT COOKIE specialty. In the afternoon there’s free time in Wertheim, whose overlapping half-timbered houses are grouped along winding streets. Glassblowers have a long tradition in this town and, especially in wintertime, they produce decorations that hang on Christmas trees all over the world. Marvel at the tasteful Christmas decorations in all the shop windows and stroll through the charming Christmas market. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 3 Würzburg
Known as the “Pearl of the Romantic Road,” Würzburg is surrounded by sloping hills covered with vineyards. The magnificent BISHOP’S RESIDENZ is a 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 4 Bamberg
Another beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site The World Heritage List includes over 800 properties with cultural and/or natural heritage of global significanceis medieval Bamberg. Your walking tour takes in its breathtaking cathedral, the Old Town Hall straddling the River Regnitz, 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 the local citizens and exhibited throughout the town. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 5 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. Nuremberg hosts Germany’s most famous Christmas market, which dates back to 1628 and is opened each year by the Christkindl. The Old Town is illuminated with festive lights and decorations. The city’s traditions include famous Lebkuchen, toy making, and metal working. After dinner we’ll introduce you to some of Germany’s FAMOUS BEERS. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 6 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 7 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 8 Regensburg
Regensburg is one of Germany’s best preserved medieval cities. Architectural highlights included on your tour are 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 9 Passau–Linz, Austria
Passau, ideally located at the confluence of the Rivers Inn, Ilz, and Danube, 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. 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! Linz, Austria’s third-largest town, lies on both banks of the Danube and is an important industrial town and busy river port. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 10 Melk–Vienna
Melk’s magnificent BENEDICTINE ABBEY dominates the town 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, arrive in Vienna, known as the “City of Music,” which inspired the creative genius of Mozart, Beethoven, and Strauss. An optional concert is available tonight. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 11 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, the 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 Kärnterstrasse and enjoy Sachertorte or Apfelstrudel in a neighborhood café. Soak up the atmosphere of the Adventszeit (Advent season) and spend some time in the beautiful Christmas markets located throughout the city. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 12 Vienna (Disembarkation)
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)
- CRUISE: 11-night cruise from Frankfurt to Vienna in an outside stateroom with hotel-style beds
- FRANKFURT: Welcome reception
- MILTENBERG: Guided walk; baking demonstration
- WÜRZBURG: Guided sightseeing, visit the Bishop’s Residenz
- BAMBERG: Guided sightseeing, see the Old Town Hall
- NUREMBERG: Guided sightseeing; beer tasting
- MUNICH: Guided sightseeing, visit the Marienplatz
- REGENSBURG: Guided sightseeing
- PASSAU: Guided walk
- MELK: Guided visit of Benedictine Abbey
- VIENNA: Guided sightseeing
All This Included
Celebrate the Christmas season on this spectacular river cruise vacation from Frankfurt to Vienna. Board your ship in Frankfurt and set sail for the Bavarian village of Miltenberg. Continue to Wertheim to see the half-timbered houses and shop for blown-glass ornaments. In Würzburg, visit the Bishop’s Residenz, Discover the nativity scenes built by local citizens in medieval Bamberg; in Nuremberg, enjoy a beer tasting and experience Germany’s most famous Christmas market; explore the vibrant Bavarian capital of Munich; and spend time in medieval Regensburg. Other highlights include delightful Passau, a visit to the awe-inspiring Benedictine Abbey in Melk, and guided sightseeing and plenty of leisure time in magical Vienna, the “City of Music.” Throughout this cruise, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the traditional Christmas markets, where you’ll hear the holiday songs and cheer, smell the delightful aromas from freshly baked specialties, shop for colorful and fun Christmas decorations, taste the local food, and celebrate the holiday season.
- 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.