CRUISETOUR

Christmastime From Prague to Basel (12 Days)

Cruise Line: Avalon Waterways
Prague, Czech Republic to Basel, Switzerland
Dates: 05 Dec 2018 - 16 Dec 2018

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DAY
PORT
Tour Segment  Cruise Segment
ARRIVE DEPART
DAY 1
05 Dec 2018
Prague, Czech Republic

Welcome to Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic. This fascinating city straddles the Vltava River, with domes, cupolas, spires, and pinnacles highlighting its skyline.

DAY 2
06 Dec 2018
Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is a 1,200-year-old city preserved in time. See its best-known treasures, such as the Old Town's Astronomical Clock, built in 1410 and once the envy of all of Europe; Hradčany castle grounds; St. Vitus Cathedral; and the Charles Bridge, the oldest bridge in Prague. Browse the Christmas markets, where rows of brightly decorated wooden huts sell Christmas tree ornaments, wooden toys, and Czech handicrafts. Get a little inner warmth with a cup of svařené víno (hot mulled wine) and a traditional hot sausage. The beautifully decorated tree in the Old Town is an impressive sight. (Breakfast)

DAY 3
07 Dec 2018
Prague, Czech Republic
Nürnberg, Germany

After lunch, drive to Nuremberg to embark your cruise vessel. Before dinner, meet your crew for a welcome reception. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 4
08 Dec 2018
Nürnberg, Germany

Although 90% of Nuremberg's Old Town suffered extensive damage during WWII, much of it has been restored to the glory it once knew as the unofficial capital of the Holy Roman Empire. Choose a guided sightseeing tour and marvel at this thousand-year-old city's medieval fortifications, Gothic churches, and the Kaiserburg (Imperial Castle), or join a more specialized Nuremberg rally grounds tour. The Old Town is illuminated with festive lights and decorations, and the Christmas market is one of the most famous in the world. You'll find 200 stalls offering traditional wares, including Nuremberg Lebkuchen (spicy gingerbread), baked goods and sweets, Christmas decorations, ornaments, and more. After your free time at the Christmas market, a shuttle bus service will be at your disposal to take you back to the ship. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 5
09 Dec 2018
Bamberg, Germany

In the early morning hours, arrive in medieval Bamberg, former residence of one of Germany's most powerful imperial dynasties. Your guided walking tour takes in its historic center, including the great 13th-century Romanesque cathedral and the fascinating Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall)—built on an island in the middle of the Regnitz River when the bishop refused to give the townspeople land for a town hall! At this time of year, especially interesting are the nativity scenes built by local residents and exhibited throughout the town. Enjoy the Christmas market, where, in addition to candles and decorations, you'll find many regional delicacies, like gingerbread and nut bread. Rejoin your ship in time for lunch. This afternoon, cruise along the Main River to Würzburg, and attend a fascinating onboard lecture to learn more about European Christmas traditions. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 6
10 Dec 2018
Würzburg, Germany

Known as the "Pearl of the Romantic Road", Würzburg is surrounded by sloping hills covered with vineyards. The city makes an immediate impression with imposing Marienberg Fortress perched above town and the 15th-century Alte Mainbrücke (Old Main Bridge). On your included guided sightseeing tour, visit the magnificent Baroque Würzburg Residence, home to the largest ceiling fresco ever painted. This afternoon you are free to explore on your own...maybe visit the Christmas markets or join an optional excursion to medieval Rothenburg, where you will have the opportunity to visit the Christmas Museum. Be sure to try a Schneeball (snowball), a local specialty not at all suitable for a diet! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 7
11 Dec 2018
Miltenberg, Germany

A culinary demonstration will be delivered before lunch and before your arrival in Miltenberg. Tucked away behind medieval defensive walls and towered gates, the picturesque Bavarian village of Miltenberg is a cultural gem on the banks of the Main River. This afternoon's guided walk will acquaint you with the town's delightful Marktplatz (market square), which centers around a Renaissance-era fountain and features striking half-timbered buildings, cobblestone lanes, and one of the oldest inns in Germany, Haus zum Riesen (the Giant's House), and the Gothic splendor of the Merchant Hall. There's free time to explore before you depart for Wiesbaden before dinner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 8
12 Dec 2018
Wiesbaden, Germany
Rüdesheim am Rhein, Germany
Wiesbaden, Germany

After breakfast this morning, a comfortable motorcoach ride takes you to the pretty little town of Rüdesheim, a perfect example of a Rhine Valley wine town. A visit to Siegfried's Mechanical Music Museum is a real surprise! Enjoy lunch in a local restaurant. Afterward we'll offer you a special treat and then there's free time to explore. The entire town transforms itself into one large Christmas market, offering products and specialties from a number of nations, all presented in a distinctive manner. You'll be spoiled by the selection of shops offering a vast variety of Christmas presents and decorations. In the Market Square, you'll find Europe's largest nativity scene with life-size figures. In the afternoon, return to Wiesbaden. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 9
13 Dec 2018
Speyer, Germany
Heidelberg, Germany
Speyer, Germany

This morning, an excursion takes you to Heidelberg, home to the oldest university in Germany, which was founded in 1386. Visit the imposing ruins of Heidelberg Castle, towering magnificently over the city and among the most important Renaissance structures north of the Alps. You'll also see the famed Great Vat, the "World's Largest Wine Barrel". At nearly 23 feet high and 28 feet wide, the cask holds over 58,000 gallons of wine and has a dance floor built on top of it! At this time of year, an ice rink is set up at the foot of the castle, and stalls offer Glühwein, Bratwurst, and other tasty treats. The Christmas market itself is scattered over five town squares, and you'll find a wide array of crafts and regional delicacies. Rejoin your ship in Speyer, and the afternoon is yours to do as you please. There is plenty of free time to shop for Christmas decorations or gifts at the Speyer Christmas market. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 10
14 Dec 2018
Strasbourg, France

Situated on the border of France and Germany, Strasbourg blends the cultures of both countries in a delightful way. As capital of the Alsace region and seat of the Council of Europe and European Parliament, it is, without a doubt, an important city that manages to retain its historic charm. In fact, on your guided walking tour you will discover Europe at its most quintessential. Visit the monumental red-sandstone Gothic cathedral with its ancient murals, stained-glass windows, and fascinating astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France district, home to half-timbered houses, quaint shops, inviting bistros, and a waterfront promenade. Also spend time exploring Place Kléber, a large historic square in the heart of the city, and Place Gutenberg in the heart of medieval Strasbourg, which features a statue of the inventor of the printing press. Dating back to 1570, the traditional Christmas market is one of the oldest and finest in Europe. Located around Place de la Cathédrale and Place Broglie, its centerpiece is a giant Christmas tree. As you stroll through the festively decorated and illuminated streets you'll notice the pleasing aromas of mulled wine, sweets, spice cakes, and biscuits—a truly magical atmosphere! This afternoon, an optional excursion into the Alsace wine region is available. This evening, enjoy an onboard woodcarving demonstration. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 11
15 Dec 2018
Breisach, Germany
Black Forest, Germany
Breisach, Germany

Located at the foot of Kaiserstuhl Mountain on the French-German border, Breisach is the gateway to Germany's Black Forest region, an area of unrivaled natural beauty with its forests of thick pine trees. The area got its name because the forests are so dense that local residents once described them as black. There's no better setting for this time of year than when smoke curls from the chimneys of the traditional Black Forest houses with their long sloping roofs, connoting images of warm and festively decorated interiors. Surely, the most well-known products from this region are Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and cuckoo clocks. This afternoon, there's free time in Breisach to visit one more Christmas market—or you may join an optional excursion to Colmar in France's Alsace region. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 12
16 Dec 2018
Basel, Switzerland

Your vacation ends after breakfast today. (Breakfast); Note: Flights out of Zürich airport should not leave before 10 am.

Christmastime From Prague to Basel 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 | Sparkling wine with breakfast | Robes & slippers in every room

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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Shore Excursions

Prague, Czech Republic - 05 Dec 2018

Prague, Czech Republic - 06 Dec 2018

Prague, Czech Republic - 07 Dec 2018

Nürnberg, Germany - 07 Dec 2018

Nürnberg, Germany - 08 Dec 2018

Bamberg, Germany - 09 Dec 2018

Wiesbaden, Germany - 12 Dec 2018

Wiesbaden, Germany - 12 Dec 2018

Basel, Switzerland - 16 Dec 2018

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