CRUISETOUR

The Danube From The Black Sea to Budapest – Westbound (12 Days)

Cruise Line: Avalon Waterways
Ship: Varies by Departure
Bucharest, Romania to Budapest, Hungary
DAY
PORT
Tour Segment  Cruise Segment
ARRIVE DEPART
DAY 1
Bucharest, Romania

Welcome to Bucharest! The remainder of the day is free to start exploring this fascinating city.

DAY 2
Bucharest, Romania
Fetesti, Romania

Much recent history has taken place in Romania's capital city, and its wide tree-lined boulevards and Arc de Triomphe—built in 1922 to honor the bravery of Romanian soldiers who fought in WWI—have gained it the name "Paris of the East". During your included tour this morning, see the main sights including Revolution Square, the scene of riots in 1989, which led to the collapse of the communist dictatorship. Later a motorcoach ride takes you to Fetești, where your river cruise vessel is docked. Before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 3
Sfântu Gheorghe, Romania

This morning during breakfast, dock in Sfântu Gheorghe, from where the excursion into the delta will start. A UNESCO World Heritage Site and the best preserved of Europe's deltas, this area hosts over 300 species of birds as well as 45 species of freshwater fish. From its source in the Black Forest to its delta at the Black Sea, the Danube measures 2,845 kilometers in length. The Km markings can be clearly seen on the river banks the length of the river. Depart Sfântu Gheorghe during lunch and enjoy a small celebration to mark Km "0"—the end of the Danube's journey. This afternoon a chance to relax and to learn more about the fascinating Delta at an onboard lecture. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 4
Cernavoda, Romania
Constanta, Romania
Cernavoda, Romania

From Cernavodă this morning, an excursion takes you to Constanta, the most important commercial center in Romania, situated on the Black Sea. A certified local guide shows you the highlights of this city and a visit of the National History & Archaeology Museum is included. This afternoon relax onboard as you cruise westward towards Rousse. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 5
Rousse, Bulgaria
Tirnovo, Bulgaria
Arbanassi, Bulgaria
Svistov, Bulgaria

Dock this morning in Rousse, Bulgaria's largest inland port. A comfortable motorcoach ride away is the ancient Bulgarian capital of Veliko Tarnovo. Situated on three hills surrounding the Yantra River, the city was a natural fortress with ancient stone houses clinging to the steep slopes. The oldest part is Tsarevets Hill, home of the royal fortress, and the Patriarchal Cathedral. With your local guide, discover this town that played an important role in Bulgaria's history. Then, journey to Arbanassi. Founded in the 15th century, the historic village of Arbanassi is best known for its examples of Bulgarian Revival architecture and its Ethnographic Museum, a 400-year-old house preserved as a museum. Visit the Church of the Nativity, one of the oldest churches in Arbanassi, and see its outstanding collection of frescoes. If you do not wish to participate in the full-day excursion, you may choose to remain onboard and join an included sightseeing tour of Rousse after breakfast. At lunchtime, sail for Svistov, where excursion participants will rejoin the ship. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 6
Vidin, Bulgaria
Belogradcik, Bulgaria
Vidin, Bulgaria

Today, enjoy a leisurely morning of sailing before arriving in Vidin, an important Danube port in northwestern Bulgaria. Its medieval fortress, known as "Baba Vidin", is the town's primary landmark. It served as Vidin's main defensive installation during the course of the Middle Ages and is the only entirely preserved medieval fortress in the country. It is now a fortress museum and has been restored to its former appearance. In nearby Belogradchik, view the eclectic group of rock formations on the western slopes of the Balkan Mountains. Sculpted by natural elements for more than 200 million years and with a variety of sizes and shapes, the Belogradchik Rocks are spectacular! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 7
Iron Gate, Romania
Donji Milanovac, Romania
Lepenski Vir, Romania
Donji Milanovac, Romania

The most spectacular scenery must surely be the dramatic gorge of the Iron Gates, a narrow and formerly very dangerous passage forming a natural border between Serbia and Romania. After lunch, dock at Donji Milanovac, from where a short drive takes you to the impressive Lepenski Vir exhibition center housing archaeological artifacts found in this area and from where you have unique views of the Danube Gorge. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 8
Belgrade, Serbia

Early today, arrive in Belgrade. One of the oldest cities in Europe, the capital of Serbia is situated at the confluence of the Danube and Sava Rivers. A local guide will be proud to show you its main sights, including St. Sava, the Europe's largest Orthodox church. Also visit the city's principal landmark, Kalemegdan Fortress, which showcases the history of Belgrade. Built in stages between the 1st and 18th centuries, the fortress witnessed many battles and observed the courage of those trying to defend the city from conquerors. The surrounding park is the most beautiful and largest park in Belgrade. In your free time, be sure to check out the city's lively pedestrian area and charming outdoor cafés. Perhaps visit one of the many art galleries or museums, relax in the park, or walk along the city streets and browse the local shops. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 9
Mohács, Hungary
Pécs, Hungary
Mohács, Hungary

Relax onboard this morning before arriving in Mohács, the first stop in Hungary. After lunch, an included excursion takes you to Pécs. Established by the Romans in the 2nd century, this was a flourishing and important town for Christianity by the 4th century. These early Christians left behind many underground burial chambers with memorial chapels above ground. With a local guide, visit the underground tombs—now part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site—many of which have splendidly decorated murals with Christian themes. Later, enjoy an organ concert. Pécs is also a rich showcase of Turkish architecture and home to Turkish mosques, striking churches, and an enjoyable atmosphere around its restaurants and cafés. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 10
Budapest, Hungary

Early this morning dock in the country's capital. Spanning the banks of the Danube, Budapest is one of Eastern Europe's liveliest cities. Whether you're seeing the sights, shopping for handcrafted embroidery or Herend porcelain, or basking in the coffee house culture over a rich cream cake in the renowned Café Gerbeaud, Budapest's unique energy is positively palatable. Bid good-bye to your crew before joining a guided tour of the city. See Heroes' Square as well as the massive hilltop castle complex with its remarkable Fisherman's Bastion—with spectacular views of the city—and 11th-century Matthias Church, the coronation spot of several Hungarian monarchs. Be sure to take note of the city's eight bridges—many famous sights in and of themselves—which connect ancient Buda on the right bank with Pest on the left. You may even want to walk across Chain Bridge, built in 1849 and a symbol of Budapest. (Breakfast)

DAY 11
Budapest, Hungary

You have time today to explore Budapest further. Perhaps visit St. Stephen's Basilica for marvelous views of the city from its viewing platform. Or maybe you would like to join one of the optional excursions on offer. (Breakfast)

DAY 12
Budapest, Hungary

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)

The Danube From The Black Sea to Budapest – Westbound map

About Us

When designing its new ships, Avalon Waterways started with the traveler instead of the ship. This is a river cruise company that invites innovation, imagination and a relentless desire to create a smart use of space be its guide. The result? More space. Bigger views. More comfort … All thanks to one-of-a-kind Panorama SuitesSM on the industry’s only Suite Ships®. The Suite Ships of Avalon are revolutionizing the river cruise industry. For instance, on these signature vessels, Avalon brings an unprecedented level of thoughtfulness and attention to detail to every aspect of the Panorama Suites, providing travelers an oasis to escape to, not escape from. Even better? Avalon doesn’t offer travelers just a few Panorama Suites on each ship. Instead, 80 percent of the guest rooms on Suite Ships are Panorama Suite (they’re 30 percent larger than the average river cruise room). In designing its ships, Avalon has refused to see space as a barrier. That fact couldn’t be truer when looking at the company’s inspired indoor/outdoor space. For instance, Avalon’s Open-Air Balconies®, a completely new concept, make full use of the intended balcony experience – in any weather condition, in any season – without compromising room space. How? Giant wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling windows with a 7-foot opening. Avalon has considered every detail of the cruise experience. But perhaps it’s what the company hasn’t done that makes it so unique. It hasn’t filled ships to capacity with people. In fact, because the river cruise line made its rooms so spacious, there’s more room for less people. Simply put, Avalon Waterways is built differently

Insider Tip

Step aboard Europe's youngest fleet and you'll find yourself surrounded by the most expansive views, innovative technologies and inspired designs.

Terms & Conditions

Cruise-only fares are per person, based on double occupancy in US dollars, unless otherwise noted. Pricing and itinerary are subject to change without notice. Restrictions may apply.

Cruise-only fares are per person, based on double occupancy in US dollars, unless otherwise noted. Pricing and itinerary are subject to change without notice. Restrictions may apply.

The trademarks VIRTUOSO, the Globe Swirl Logo and SPECIALISTS IN THE ART OF TRAVEL are registered trademarks of Virtuoso, Ltd. Virtuoso, Ltd. has a U.S. copyright registration for the Globe Swirl Logo, ©2000. All rights reserved. Virtuoso CST#2069091-50. California CST# 2069091; TA# 808 - Registered Iowa Travel Agency; Washington UBI # 601 554 183. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

Reviews and Recommendations for Avalon Waterways

100%

of 11
guests
recommend


Virtuoso Verified Traveler

All reviews are from confirmed guests sharing exclusive insights

Sort reviews by