Christmas River Cruise - Avalon® Zurich to Prague Cruise

Christmastime Zurich to Prague 2017

12 Day River Cruise from Zurich to Prague

2017 Information

Experience the holiday season on this festive river cruise vacation from Zurich to Prague. Enjoy guided sightseeing in Strasbourg, Würzburg, Bamberg, Nuremberg and finally, Prague in the Czech Republic. Other highlights: excursions to Germany’s Black Forest; to Heidelberg for a visit to the red sandstone castle and to Rüdesheim in the heart of Rhine wine country. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the many Christmas markets, where you can sample some tasty holiday treats, smell the festive aromas, shop for locally crafted Christmas ornaments, and delight in the holiday cheer. This year, celebrate the holiday season in style on this memorable and joyous cruise. Your ship will be decorated and dressed up in Christmas colors.


Dates & Prices Get A Quote Book Online

Highlights & Sightseeing

Cruise: deluxe 9-night cruise in an outside stateroom with Avalon’s exclusive Comfort Collection BedsSM

Day 1 Zurich. Transfer to Basel (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception

Day 2 Breisach: excursion to the Black Forest; Christmas market

Day 3 Strasbourg: guided sightseeing, visit La Petite France district and the gothic cathedral; Christmas market

Day 4 Excursion to Heidelberg: guided visit of the castle, see the Great Vat; Christmas markets

Day 5 Frankfurt. Excursion to Rüdesheim: visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum; enjoy a special treat

Day 6 Miltenberg: guided walk; onboard cookie-baking demonstration; St. Nicholas legend

Day 7 Würzburg: guided sightseeing, visit the Bishop’s Residenz; Christmas market

Day 8 Bamberg: onboard lecture; guided sightseeing, see the Old Town Hall; special gift; Christmas market

Day 9 Nuremberg: choice of guided sightseeing or Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour; Christmas market

Day 10 Nuremberg (Disembarkation) – Prague: travel to Prague

Day 11 Prague: guided sightseeing, see the Astronomical Clock and visit Hradčany Castle Grounds

Day 12 Prague: your vacation ends today

Special onboard and onshore experiences presented by entertainers, artisans, and experts, designed to enrich your cruise.

Enjoy a fascinating excursion into the Black Forest. Attend a traditional culinary demonstration.

Meals

  • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions with sparkling wine and canapés
  • Welcome dinner
  • Daily Afternoon Tea
  • Daily Night Fare
  • Farewell dinner
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner are included daily on board your vessel

NOTES:

  • Christmas markets operate from late November until the third week of December, depending on the location (Prague markets are open from early December until the first days of January)
  • In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change becomes necessary, a substitute will be offered.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

Day 1Arrive in Zürich, Switzerland–Transfer to Basel (Embarkation)

Welcome to Switzerland. This afternoon, board your ship and meet your crew at an onboard welcome reception. (Dinner)

NOTE:
Flights into Zürich must arrive before 3 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.

Day 2Breisach, Germany. Excursion to the Black Forest

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 this time of year than when smoke curls from the chimneys of the traditional Black Forest houses with their long sloping roofs. 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 the Christmas market—or you may join an optional excursion to Colmar in France’s Alsace region. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 3Strasbourg, 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. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 4Excursion to Heidelberg, Germany

Today, an excursion takes you to Heidelberg, home to the oldest university in Germany, 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 is scattered over five town squares, and you’ll find a wide array of crafts and regional delicacies. There is plenty of free time to shop for Christmas decorations or gifts. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 5Frankfurt. Excursion to Rüdesheim

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 MUSICAL INSTRUMENT MUSEUM is a real surprise! 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 Frankfurt. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Day 6Miltenberg

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. Later, continue your cruise on the Main River to Würzburg and enjoy a COOKIE-BAKING DEMONSTRATION on board. Tonight, let your Cruise Director introduce you to the ST. NICHOLAS LEGEND. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 7Würzburg

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 GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR, visit the magnificent baroque BISHOP’S RESIDENZ, home to the largest ceiling fresco ever painted. This afternoon you are free to explore the beautifully decorated streets on your own, visit the Christmas markets, or perhaps join an optional excursion to medieval Rothenburg, where you will have the opportunity to visit the Christmas Museum. Here, try a Schneeball (snowball), a local specialty not at all suitable for a diet! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 8Bamberg

Learn everything about Christmas traditions during an ONBOARD LECTURE this morning. In the early afternoon, arrive in medieval Bamberg, former residence of one of Germany’s most powerful imperial dynasties and today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 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! This time of year, the town is decked out for Christmas. Especially interesting are the many nativity scenes built by local citizens and exhibited throughout the town. Enjoy the Christmas market, where, in addition to candles and decorations, you’ll find regional delicacies such as gingerbread and nut bread. Don’t miss the special gift we have reserved for you in a local brewery. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 9Nuremberg

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 either 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 dozens of stalls offering traditional wares, including Nuremberg Lebkuchen (spicy gingerbread), baked goods and sweets, Christmas decorations, ornaments, and more. Shuttle service to the ship will be at your disposal. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 10Nuremberg (Disembarkation) – Prague, Czech Republic

After breakfast today, bid your crew farewell and travel by motorcoach to Prague the “Golden City”. (Breakfast)

Day 11Prague

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 svarene vino (hot mulled wine) and a traditional hot sausage. The beautifully decorated tree in the Old Town is an impressive sight. (Breakfast)

Day 12Prague

Your vacation ends after breakfast today. (Breakfast)

Ship Details

Tranquility II

Tranquility II

Another exciting Suite Ship® graces the rivers of Europe in 2015. The intimate setting of the Avalon Tranquility II features two full decks of Panorama Suites with Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows that transform the living space into a unique Open-Air Balcony®. With 200 square feet, Panorama Suites are more than 30% larger than the industry standard-perfect for stretching out and relaxing-or even throwing a private cocktail party for up to six adults in the spacious sitting area. Onboard amenities and services include complimentary computer use in public areas and free Wi-Fi access, a Fitness Center with state-of-the-art equipment, a hair salon, elevator, and a spacious Sky Deck with shade system, whirlpool, deck games, and the delightful Sky Bistro for al-fresco lunches of light grill fare.

Included Amenities

  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows
  • Sky Deck with shade awnings
  • Non-smoking interior
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Headsets for all guided shore excursions in Europe
  • Sightseeing with Certified Local Guides
  • Onboard lectures, activities & nightly entertainment
  • Room service for Continental breakfast & beverages (service fee applies)
  • Complimentary computer use in public areas
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Biking excursions available in Amsterdam and Durnstein
  • Sky Deck game area
  • Avalon Choice cruising experience
  • Use of Nordic walking sticks
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees
  • Complimentary maps
  • Selection of Local Favorites to bring the customs, cultures, and tastes of your destination to life
  • Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs
  • Expanded Fitness Center
  • Elevator
  • Outside viewing deck
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew
  • Cruise Director
  • Revolutionary engineering
  • Sky Deck whirlpool
  • Hair salon (manicures available)
  • Onboard movie nights
  • Bicycles you can check out and use around many port towns for free
  • Alternate light lunch and dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Choice of Leisurely, Traditional or Independent sightseeing options
  • Local Favorites onboard experiences with local chefs, entertainers, artisans & experts
  • Well-stocked library
  • Fresh fruit available throughout the day

Staterooms & Suites

Avalon Deluxe Stateroom (Cat. D, E) - 172 sq. ft.
Features
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Soft & firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • L'Occitane bath products
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • Two windows
  • Writing desk
  • Memory foam mattress toppers
  • European-style duvets
  • Extra blankets
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Hairdryer
  • Spacious 3-door closets with shelves for ample storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channel
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • In-room safe
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity
Panorama Suite (Cat. A, B, P) - 200 sq. ft.
Features
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Soft & firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • L'Occitane bath products
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • In-room safe
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Marble countertops in bathroom
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window with Open-Air Balcony®
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity
  • Coffee table
  • Memory foam mattress toppers
  • European-style duvets
  • Extra blankets
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Hairdryer
  • Spacious 3-door closets with shelves for ample storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channel
  • Make-up mirror
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • 6-person sitting area
  • Writing desk
  • Sofa
Royal Suite - 300 sq. ft.
Features
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Soft & firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • L'Occitane bath products
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • In-room safe
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Marble countertops in bathroom
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window with Open-Air Balcony®
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity
  • Coffee table
  • Memory foam mattress toppers
  • European-style duvets
  • Extra blankets
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Hairdryer
  • Spacious 3-door closets with shelves for ample storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channel
  • Make-up mirror
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • 6-person sitting area
  • Writing desk
  • Sofa
  • Double sinks
DECK PLANS

Hotels

Prague
Frankfurt

Prague

InterContinental Praha

InterContinental Praha Parizska 30, Prague,  Czech Republic Parizska 30
Prague, Czech Republic

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

Contemporary 9-story Hotel situated in old Jewish Quarter, across the road from the Vltava River.

Hotel Amenities

Bar/Lounge
Spa Services
Luggage Storage
Fitness Room
Ice Machine
Hot Tub
Pool
Dry Cleaning
ATM
Business Center
Gift Shop
Elevator
Free WiFi
Concierge desk
Currency Exchange
Restaurant On-Site
Parking/Valet
Room Amenities

Mini-bar
Window Opens
Cable/Satellite
Alarm Clock
Air Conditioning
Iron/Ironing Board
Coffee Maker
Television
Non-smoking Rooms
Smoking Rooms
Desk
Room Service
Internet Access
Phone
Disabled Access / Rooms
Voicemail
In-Room Safe
Hair Dryer

Frankfurt

Moevenpick Frankfurt City

Moevenpick Frankfurt City Den Haager Strasse 5, Frankfurt,  Germany Den Haager Strasse 5
Frankfurt, Germany

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

A 288 room modern property with a good location close to one of the city's newest shopping centers. Facilities include a restaurant serving Swiss specialities with an open show kitchen, an all-day bar for cocktail and snacks and a top floor fitness area.

Hotel Amenities

Bar/Lounge
Restaurant On-Site
Spa Services
Parking/Valet
Elevator
Dry Cleaning
Currency Exchange
Business Center
Luggage Storage
Free WiFi
Fitness Room
Room Amenities

Climate Control
Smoking Rooms
Disabled Access / Rooms
Air Conditioning
Desk
Pay Movies
Wake-Up Calls
Complimentary Toiletries
In-Room Safe
Television
Cable/Satellite
Internet Access
Phone
Air Conditioning (Seasonal)
Room Service
Coffee Maker
Hair Dryer
Non-smoking Rooms
Mini-bar
Iron/Ironing Board

 Optional Excursions

The following optional excursions are examples only for this vacation. These may or may not be offered, and availability is subject to days of operation and seasonality. Please select a departure date to view optional excursions and pricing for a specific date (due to currency fluctuation, pricing shown is subject to change until purchased).

Price Ranges

$ ($50 USD and under)
$$ ($51 - $100 USD)
$$$ ($101 - $150 USD)
$$$$ (Over $150)


Wurzburg
Nuremberg
Prague
Zurich
Breisach
Strasbourg
Packages

Wurzburg

Rothenburg
Rothenburg

Rothenburg

If you had to pick only one place to visit in the whole of Germany, it should be Rothenburg. The best preserved medieval town in Germany, Rothenburg ob der Tauber fits the word "romantic" perfectly.

Price Range: $$

Nuremberg

The Rise and the Fall of the Third Reich
The Rise and the Fall of the Third Reich

The Rise and the Fall of the Third Reich

Walking tour through the major sights of the Nazi Past of this city.

Price Range: $

Nürnberg Sightseeing
Nürnberg Sightseeing

Nürnberg Sightseeing

Start the guided city tour with a visit of the castle grounds of the Kaiserburg, once home to emperors, today still dominating the skyline of Nuremberg. After a panoramic drive the tour ends at the large market square, which is located at the heart of the city center, surrounded by a multitude of must-see sights. You are sure to be enchanted by the picturesque flair of the Old Town, take a look around and journey into times past

Price Range: $

Prague

Prague's Secrets Revealed
Prague's Secrets Revealed

Prague's Secrets Revealed

Prague Secrets Tour leads us to the Charles Bridge and Mala Strana, which according to the locals is Prague`s most romantic and picturesque part of the protected city center.

Price Range: $

Czech Dinner
Czech Dinner

Czech Dinner

A typical Czech meal in a famous wine restaurant to experience the real Prague atmosphere.

Price Range: $$

Castle Melnik Visit with Wine Tasting
Castle Melnik Visit with Wine Tasting

Castle Melnik Visit with Wine Tasting

Venture into the beautiful Bohemian countryside this morning and discover Castle M¿lník, a genuine Jewel of Bohemia.

Price Range: $$

Terezin Concentration Camp Memorial
Terezin Concentration Camp Memorial

Terezin Concentration Camp Memorial

Just one hour outside of Prague lies Terezín, a magnificent former 18th century Austrian fortress with a terrible past. Terezín's story is a combination of life and death: the tragedy of the Holocaust contrasts with the prisoners' secret celebrations of culture, politics and faith.

Price Range: $$

Zurich

Zürich Sightseeing
Zürich Sightseeing

Zürich Sightseeing

Switzerland's largest city is beautifully located on the banks of two rivers and a lake. Enjoy our expertly guided Zürich City Tour today.

Price Range: $

Mount Pilatus
Mount Pilatus

Mount Pilatus

Enjoy the magnificent panorama from the Mount Pilatus

Price Range: $$

Breisach

Colmar
Colmar

Colmar

Known as the birthplace of the father of The Statue of Liberty, Colmar is indeed, one of the most beautiful, small towns in France.

Price Range: $

Strasbourg

Alsace
Alsace

Alsace

The famous Alsace Wine Route, or "Route des Vins", is a winding ribbon of flower decorated villages in the north of Alsace. This guided excursion takes you on the back roads through the heart of the wine-making country.

Price Range: $

Packages

Celebration Packages
Celebration Packages

Celebration Packages

Celebrating a birthday or anniversary while you're cruising? Add an Avalon Celebration Package to your vacation. You can make your special day even more memorable with special touches ranging from flowers to a private cocktail reception.

Price Range: $$

Similar Cruises

10 Day River Cruise from Zurich to Nuremberg

Starting at: $2,899

per person without air*

Cruise Details

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