Day 1: Vienna
Arrive at Vienna International Airport where you will be transferred to the ship. (D)
Day 2: Vienna
Featured Excursions: Vienna city tour with National Library visit, Christmas Market, and classical concert
Vienna is a treasure trove of secular and sacred gems, which you will see on your panoramic city tour. Travel the stately Ringstrasse, the broad thoroughfare surrounded by the many imperial buildings and monuments that give Vienna its wedding cake-like appearance. You will see St. Stephen’s Cathedral, where Mozart was married, and then visit the Baroque State Hall of the Austrian National Library, said to be the most beautiful library room in the world. You will then have time to visit Vienna’s largest Christmas Market, which sits before Vienna’s Neo-Gothic City Hall. In the evening, you will enjoy an evening concert of Mozart and Strauss music in a traditional Viennese concert hall. (BB, L, Captain’s Welcome Gala)
Note: The Austrian National Library is closed on Mondays. If the tour lands on a Monday, Mozarthaus will be visited instead.
Day 3: Dürnstein, cruising the Wachau Valley
Featured Excursions: Dürnstein walking tour with exclusive mulled wine tasting and Mozart and Strauss concert at a Viennese concert hall
Cruise the UNESCO World Heritage-designated Wachau Valley, where the vineyard- and orchard-covered hills rise steeply above the water. The tiny Baroque village of Dürnstein is located in the center of the valley. High above the town, you can see the ruins of the 12th-century castle where Richard the Lionheart was held for ransom. Along with the castle, Dürnstein is home to a beautiful Baroque monastery, 16th- through 18th-century townhouses, and old burgher houses—all of which you will see on your guided tour as you enjoy your exclusive mulled wine tasting. You will depart Dürnstein later in the day for Vienna, where you will enjoy an evening concert of pieces by Mozart and Strauss in a classic Viennese concert hall. (BB, L, D)
Day 4: Linz
Featured Excursion: Linz walking tour with Christmas Market
The Danube serves as a dividing line between the modern Linz and its old soul. During your guided walking tour, view Linz’s Alter Dom, the Old Market, and the impressive Main Square—one of Austria’s most attractive closed squares, with its Baroque Trinity Column. Also, enjoy Linz’s enchanting Christmas Market, which is filled with everything from Christmas crèches—for which Linz is famous—to the ever-popular Linzer torte. (BB, L, D)
Day 5: Passau, Vilshofen (Theresienthal)
Featured Excursions: Exclusive Bavarian Forest horse-drawn carriage ride with Theresienthal visit, Passau walking tour with Christmas Market, and gingerbread-making and floral-decorating demonstrations
After enjoying a scenic horse-drawn carriage ride through the Bavarian Forest, you’ll be taken to the world-famous crystal glass manufacturer, Theresienthal, to see the fine art of handmade crystal glass-making at a workshop. Then it’s on to quaint Passau. Your walking tour takes you through the cobblestone streets of Old Town to the New Residence, the Town Hall, and the Christmas Market located near the magnificent Baroque cathedral, home of the largest pipe organ in Europe. At the Christmas Market, you will have the opportunity to see firsthand how gingerbread is made and then taste this famous holiday treat. You will also learn how to make beautiful holiday centerpieces at a floral-decorating demonstration. (BB, L, D)
Day 6: Regensburg
Featured Excursion: Regensburg walking tour with Christmas Market
Lively Regensburg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is home to 2,000 years of history. Your guided walking tour explores the Cathedral of St. Peter, with its magnificent stained-glass windows; the Town Hall; and the town’s famous 12th-century Stone Bridge. And what could be more satisfying as you wander the city’s romantic Christmas Market than indulging in local specialties such as dumplings with vanilla sauce? The stalls of the Christmas Market are set up around the 500-year-old Neupfarrkirche and in front of the classical columns of the former city guardhouse and the Lucrecia craft market. Shop for children’s toys or traditional hand-carved Nativity scenes. You can spend the entire afternoon at the market or venture off to see a bit more of the town. You may want to visit one of the oldest restaurants in Germany, die Historische Wurstküche (the Historic Sausage Kitchen); it supplied food to the men who built that 12th-century bridge, so it is probably the world’s oldest hot dog stand. The historic quarter not only boasts almost a thousand beautiful old buildings but also many cozy pubs and some great shopping. (BB, L, D)
Day 7: Nuremberg, Roth
Featured Excursion: Full-day Nuremberg city tour with Christmas Market
Discover Nuremberg, a quintessential Medieval German city, on your panoramic city tour. Your tour takes you past the mighty Medieval walls with 80 towers that enclose the historic city center. You will stop at the Kaiserburg and walk through the lively old quarter with its well-preserved traditional half-timbered houses. The next stop is Nuremberg’s Christkindlesmarkt, with over 200 wooden stalls filled with signature toys and glittering gifts. Enjoy the festive atmosphere enhanced by the delicious aromas of gingerbread and glühwein (hot mulled wine). And you won’t want to leave without buying a special toy—whether for a child or for yourself—since Nuremberg has been a toy-making center for centuries. (BB, Captain’s Farewell Dinner)
Day 8: Nuremberg (disembark), transfer to the airport
Disembark the ship in Nuremberg and transfer to Nuremberg airport for your flight home, or extend your stay in Prague. (CB/BB)
All This Included
Discover where many of our signature holiday traditions—Christmas trees, gingerbread, nutcrackers, St. Nick, and candy canes—came from as you sail through Germany and Austria on a magical cruise.
You will be spellbound by the Medieval atmosphere of Nuremberg’s main Christmas Market, and sample its famous holiday gingerbread. Stroll through Regensburg’s romantic Christmas Market, savoring fresh dumplings with vanilla sauce. In Passau, shop for unique crafts like hand-painted porcelain and Bohemian glass ornaments. Sit back and enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride through the Bavarian Forest before visiting a world-renowned glass making workshop for a demonstration. In Linz, “The Town of Christmas Crèches,” marvel at the small clay figurines that represent the people of a typical village—the butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker. And hear a Mozart and Strauss concert while in the “City of Waltzes,” Vienna.
All this and more, in two countries of culture and elegance, will surely make for a joyous start to your holiday festivities.
7-night cruise in a riverview stateroom on the chic River Empress
All transfers on arrival and departure days
All meals onboard, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients
7 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 7 dinners
Captain’s Welcome Gala and Farewell Dinners
Complimentary fine wine, beer, and soft drinks during lunch and dinner onboard; bottled water replenished daily in your stateroom; and 24-hour specialty coffee and tea station
Explore 7 countries
8 excursions fully hosted by English-speaking local expert
Exclusive Go Active Program and "Gentle Walking" Program
3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Services of an experienced Uniworld Cruise Manager
State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio headset system on all shore excursions
Captivating onboard local entertainment
Signature Lecture: “The Sound of Christmas Music, from ‘Stille Nacht’ to ‘Weihnachtsoratorium’”
Accommodations on this Tour
Cruising: Cabin onboard the River Empress
Pre and Post Add-ons
4 days - $999 per person (single supplement $499)
Delight in the beautifully preserved "City of Spires", which boasts a remarkable core of historic buildings, as well as gracious squares and friendly people.
Cabin upgrades are available.
Note: Christmas Markets are generally open from the beginning of Advent until December 23.
Prices exclude additional port charges of $140 and are per person, cruise-only based on double occupancy.
A limited number of singles are available for an additional supplement.
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.