Active Discovery on The Danube – Cruise Only Westbound (8 Days)

Cruise Line: Avalon Waterways
Budapest, Hungary to Linz, Austria
DAY
PORT
ARRIVE DEPART
DAY 1
Budapest, Hungary
Visegrád, Hungary

Welcome to Budapest, Hungary's lively capital spanning the banks of the Danube. The remainder of the day is free to start exploring Eastern Europe's most cosmopolitan metropolis. This afternoon, transfer to the Avalon Luminary for embarkation. After a mandatory safety exercise, meet your friendly crew and fellow shipmates at a Welcome Reception. As your ship pulls away from the dock, be sure to have your camera ready for an unforgettable view of the magnificent Parliament Building. At dinner, your ship's chef will delight your tastebuds with Hungarian specialties. Later, as scenic panoramas of the Danube Bend drift by, consider toasting your adventure with a cocktail on the Sky Deck. Your ship docks for the night near Visegrád. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 2
Visegrád, Hungary

Another exciting day is on tap. After breakfast, choose your activity: cheer your favorite champion at a medieval knights tournament at Visegrád's Lower Castle, featuring targeting and fighting demonstrations by members of the St. George Knightly Order, and during free time here, be sure to explore Palotaház, where stonemasons, smiths, potters, and paper-makers produce their traditional items using age-old techniques; or spend your day in the great outdoors on a guided hike through Danube-Ipoly National Park, home to eagles, falcons, bats, terrapins, fire salamanders, and other wildlife. This afternoon, your ship passes by the mighty Esztergom Basilica, coronation church of Hungary's monarchs. Relax onboard as we sail upstream towards Austria. After a delectable dinner of Viennese specialties, experience the first of ten locks your ship will pass through on this cruise. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 3
Vienna, Austria

Once the center of the mighty Habsburg Empire, this "City of Music" inspired the creative genius of Mozart, Beethoven, and Strauss—and will inspire you, as well! Waltz ashore and choose your activity: enjoy a bike tour that takes in the sights along the famed Ringstraße and areas of Vienna inaccessible to buses and cars; slip on your sneakers and join a jogging tour that shows you the highlights as you run between sites; take a unique insiders tour that features something different every day. It could be anything, from a visit to a musical instrument maker to a crash course on etiquette and protocol at diplomatic gatherings. You will meet locals, have the chance to prepare some food at a cooking class, and will enjoy other surprises as well; or get a proper introduction to Vienna during a city sightseeing tour that includes an inside visit of Belvedere Palace to see Klimt's celebrated Kiss. Afterward, you have free time to explore on your own. Maybe stroll through the pedestrian Kärntner Straße, take a break for a piece of decadent Sachertorte, or join an optional excursion. Tonight's onboard dinner pays a delicious tribute to the former Austrian-Hungarian Empire. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 4
Vienna, Austria

A second full day in Vienna presents even more opportunities to immerse yourself in the magic. Choose your activity for an experience most meaningful to you: wrap yourself in the peace of the city at sunrise during an early riser walking tour that includes breakfast at a Viennese café and an exclusive viewing of the Habsburg family's private art collections at the Museum of Fine Arts; for a more leisurely start to your morning, skip the walking tour and onshore breakfast and simply join us for the museum visit, which includes time in the Italian & Dutch masters gallery; or perfect for military history buffs, begin with the museum visit of the Habsburg collection, then explore the military museum, commemorating the heroic past of the Habsburg Empire. In your free time later, consider joining an optional guided hike through the vineyards outside town, with a wine tasting and dinner at a Heurigen wine tavern. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 5
Krems, Austria
Grein, Austria

Early this morning, arrive in Krems, the eastern gateway to the famed Wachau Valley. After breakfast, choose your activity: paddle a canoe on a guided tour down the Danube and along some of its tributaries, for a completely unique perspective of the river and riverbank villages; bask in the fresh air and incredible views on an easy guided bike tour from Krems to Spitz, and enjoy sightseeing in Dürnstein that includes the mesmerizing blue Stiftskirche, taking a break to sample local specialties; join an interactive Wine World Experience with wine tasting; or get a hands-on local encounter that showcases production of regional fruits, vegetables, wine, or other products, depending on the season, with an included snack and beverage. Back onboard, marvel at today's scenic highlight as you sail through the picturesque Wachau Valley. Slowly cruise past the stately Benedictine Melk Abbey, and through the stunning Strudengau, popular among climbers and hikers for its enticing geological formations. Arrive in Grein, and visit Greinburg or Clam Castles, where you will meet the owner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 6
Grein, Austria
Mauthausen, Austria
Linz, Austria

This morning, a guided walk through Grein features a visit of its unique historical theater, the oldest in Austria still holding regular performances. Back onboard, relax, enjoy lunch, and bask in the breathtaking scenery. Disembark in Mauthausen, with evidence of human habitation dating back to the Neolithic Age. Here, we let you place your own personal stamp on your day as you choose your activity: take a guided bike tour to an ancient Roman border defense fort dating back to the 2nd century AD. Visit the museum dedicated to the site, with military weaponry, accounts of daily life, ceiling frescoes, sacred art objects, and more; visit the 9th-century St. Florian Monastery, an architectural rival to Melk Abbey. While exploring, you may meet one of the monks (when available) or attend a short music recital; or join a heart-wrenching tour of Mauthausen Concentration Camp, one of World War II's largest and most brutal Nazi work camps. Later, join an onboard tasting of local specialties on the way to Linz, Austria's third-largest city. This evening, optional theater and music excursions are available—or you can mingle with the locals at a fun pub crawl! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 7
Engelhartszell, Austria, Austria
Schlögener Schlinge, Austria
Linz, Austria

As you slept, your ship arrived in the pretty market town of Engelhartszell near the German border. Step ashore and choose your activity: visit the stunning Rococo Engelszell Abbey to tour its brewery, explore its sensory garden—complete with stone labyrinth, herb garden, and vineyard—and attend a tasting of locally produced cheeses and beer brewed by the Trappist monks; or join a fun guided hike along the route that smugglers took during World War II, when a tightly controlled border existed between Austria and Germany. Back on your ship, an excellent lunch of Bavarian specialties will leave you energized and ready to join an exhilarating hike along the Danube. Fresh air and incredible vistas await as you watch the Avalon Luminary pass through the Schlögen Oxbow, a particularly beautiful horseshoe-shaped curve of the river. Rejoin your ship in Aschach, and prepare for an exquisite gala farewell dinner featuring foods specially paired with just the right area wines or beers. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 8
Linz, Austria

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning! (Breakfast)

Active Discovery on The Danube – Cruise Only Westbound map

What's Included

Included

  •  Services of a professional Cruise Director | Onboard lectures | Complimentary Wi-Fi access | Activities & Nightly piano music | Sightseeing with Local Guides | Headsets for all guided shore excursions | Superb dining with all meals on board daily featuring full breakfast, lunch, and dinner, including a welcome reception, Captain's reception, and farewell dinner | Quality wines from Europe's most famous wine regions with every dinner | One sitting with open seating arrangements

Not Included

  •  Airfare | Gratuities | Any items of a personal nature | Anything not specifically noted as included

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.

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