Grand Christmas & New Year's Cruise
FEATURED EXCURSION: Nuremberg city tour with Christmas Market
Discover Nuremberg, a quintessential medieval German city, on your panoramic city tour. You’ll pass the medieval fortifications that enclose the historic city center on your way to the Kaiserburg; from the castle complex you’ll walk through the lively old quarter with its traditional half-timbered houses. You’re just in time to catch the very last day of Nuremberg’s Christkindlesmarkt, Germany’s oldest and best-known Christmas Market, with over two hundred stalls filled with signature toys and tasty seasonal treats. You will certainly want to sample the lebkuchen (gingerbread), since Nuremberg is known as the “Gingerbread Capital of the World.” In the evening, enjoy a Captain’s Welcome Reception and Gala Dinner.
Spend a leisurely day onboard as you cruise along the remarkable 106-mile-long Main-Danube Canal to the Danube River. Arrive in Regensburg in the evening; if you wish, you can attend midnight mass in the spectacular Gothic cathedral in the medieval town center—a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of “2,000 Years in One Hour” Regensburg walking tour of Old Town or Jewish Regensburg walking tour
Your first port of call on the Danube, Regensburg is a friendly town with quaint cobblestone streets, medieval alleys, and ancient Roman ruins. You may wish to attend Christmas mass in one of Regensburg’s lovely churches before seeing this unspoiled gem of a city with a local expert. Starting at the Cathedral of St. Peter, you will walk past the Gothic Town Hall, across the 12th-century Stone Bridge, and through Old Town. If you prefer, you can visit sites associated with one of the oldest Jewish communities in southern Germany, which dates to the Middle Ages. Invigorated by your stroll, you’ll return to the ship for a warm and festive Christmas meal, complete with all the holiday trimmings.
FEATURED EXCURSION: Exclusive Bavarian Forest Village and Theresienthal glass manufactory visit
Snuggle down in warm blankets aboard a horse- drawn wagon and take a ride through a charming village in the Bavarian Forest. Then you’ll get a close-up view at the art of making the famous ruby-red Bohemian glass with a visit to the world-renowned glass manufacturer, Theresienthal (which produced glassware for the rulers of Europe for centuries).
FEATURED EXCURSION: Passau walking tour
Enjoy a peaceful morning cruising an especially scenic stretch of the Danube River on the way to the beautiful city of Passau. Situated at the confluence of three rivers, Passau was an important center of trade during the Middle Ages. On your walking tour, you will see the treasures of Old Town, including the Italian baroque cathedral erected after the big fire of 1662.
FEATURED EXCURSION: Full-day Salzburg tour
On your guided tour through Salzburg’s UNESCO World Heritage-designated Old Town, view such gems as the 17th-century cathedral and the house where Mozart was born, as well as the Mirabellgarten, where scenes from The Sound of Music were filmed. You’ll also have time to visit some of the many lovely shops in the area.
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Dürnstein village stroll with exclusive mulled wine tasting, and exclusive cocktail reception at Artstetten Castle with Princess Anita von Hohenberg
Explore charming Dürnstein with your Cruise Manager and enjoy an exclusive mulled wine tasting. Then attend an exclusive cocktail reception at Artstetten Castle with Princess Anita von Hohenberg, a descendant of the royal Habsburgs.
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of Vienna city tour with Winter Palace of Prince Eugene visit and exclusive waltz tuition or exclusive “Taste of Christmas” walking tour, and Mozart & Strauss concert at a Viennese palace
Encounter the highlights of Vienna’s Habsburg heritage, including Prince Eugene’s magnificent Winter Palace, a stunning example of baroque architecture. Later in the afternoon, immerse yourself in Viennese tradition by learning the Viennese Waltz on an exclusive excursion to a Viennese palace. Or, ramble through Old Town on an exclusive “Taste of Christmas” tour. Venture down Vienna’s famous shopping streets, the Graben and Kohlmarkt, where you’ll see the wonderful confectionery treats on display in Café Demel’s windows, and continue on to the Am Hof and Freyung Christmas markets. This evening, enjoy the music of Mozart and Strauss in a private Viennese palace.
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Schönbrunn Palace, and exclusive New Year’s gala dinner and dance at a Viennese palace
Visit stunning Schönbrunn Palace, a Habsburg summer residence that rivals Versailles with its ornate architecture, extravagant gardens, and glorious 18th- and 19th-century interiors. Then celebrate the New Year in a glorious Viennese palace, where you will delight in a festive dinner and a private concert with the chance to dance to famous Strauss waltzes.
Take some time to explore Vienna on your own and then enjoy your ship’s luxuries as you cruise the enchanting Danube to Budapest. In the evening, enjoy a Captain’s Farewell Reception and Gala Dinner.
FEATURED EXCURSION: Budapest city tour
Your panoramic city tour features the famous 19th-century Chain Bridge, St. Stephen’s Basilica, and the UNESCO-designated Castle Hill district.