Budapest to Amsterdam Music & Opera River Cruise - Avalon

Magnificent Europe for Music & Opera 2018

15 Day River Cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam

2018 Information

From Budapest to Amsterdam, you’ll be immersed in the culture and music of Central Europe. Delight in the vibrant and expressive voices of our opera singers who accompany you through a variety of musical experiences on this timeless river cruise vacation. Enjoy an exclusive choir performance and a memorable concert in one of the unique venues that Europe offers.

As your journey starts, visit three of Europe’s vibrant capital cities: Budapest, Hungary; Bratislava, Slovakia; and Vienna, Austria. A Local Guide shows you the must-see sites in each city, with plenty of time to explore on your own. Admire the view from Fishermen’s Bastion in Budapest, stroll through Bratislava’s Old Town with its winding streets and bronze sculptures, and be sure to stop in a classic Viennese café for a decadent treat. Sail through the picturesque Wachau Valley, along the engineering feat that is the Main Danube Canal, and through the dramatic Rhine Gorge, where you too can be enchanted by the Lorelei melody. Visit Melk’s magnificent Benedictine Abbey and Würzburg’s baroque Bishop’s Residenz. Enjoy a tasting of Wachau wines and German beers and Bratwurst. Explore quaint towns like Dürnstein, with its blue and white baroque Stiftskirche; and Bamberg, with its town hall straddling River Regnitz. Visit Mozart’s birthplace in Salzburg and where the hills come alive with “The Sound of Music.” Enjoy guided walks in historic Nuremberg; Regensburg, one of Germany’s best preserved medieval cities; and Würzburg, on the Main River. In charming Rüdesheim, visit the unique Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum and enjoy a stroll through its famous cobblestone Drosselgasse. Straddling both sides of the Rhine River is Cologne, Germany—a 2,000-year-old city known for its gothic architecture. On a guided walk, see the famous twin-spired cathedral and explore the cobblestone streets of the Old City!

This European river cruise ends in Holland’s lively capital, Amsterdam. See the treasures of this 700-year-old city from a unique perspective—on a canal cruise along the elegant grachten.


Dates & Prices Get A Quote Book Online

Highlights & Sightseeing

Day 1 Budapest (Embarkation): welcome reception

Day 2 Budapest: guided sightseeing, see Fishermen’s Bastion and Heroes’ Square, visit the Opera House

Day 3 Bratislava: guided sightseeing, visit St. Martin’s Cathedral

Day 4 Vienna: guided sightseeing

Day 5 Krems–Melk: guided walk in Krems; cruise through the Wachau Valley; guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey; wine tasting

Day 6 Passau: choice of Passau guided walk or full day excursion to Salzburg with lunch included

Day 7 Regensburg: guided walk; enjoy a snack at the Historische Wurstküche; choir concert

Day 8 Roth–Nuremberg: choice of guided sightseeing in Nuremberg or Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour or guided sightseeing of Roth

Day 9 Bamberg: guided walk, see the Old Town Hall

Day 10 Würzburg: guided sightseeing, visit the Bishop’s Residenz

Day 11 Main River Village: guided walk

Day 12 Rüdesheim–Rhine Gorge: visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum; enjoy a special treat; cruise through the Rhine Gorge

Day 13 Cologne: choice of guided walk or Jewish Heritage walk

Day 14 Amsterdam: canal cruise

Day 15 Amsterdam (Disembarkation): your vacation ends this morning

Meals

  • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions with sparkling wine and canapés
  • Welcome dinner
  • Farewell dinner
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch or (weather permitting) grill fare at the Sky Bistro on the Sky Deck
  • Daily four-course à la carte dinner in the main dining room
  • Alternative dinner of petite portions or regional specialties with wines, in the Panorama Bistro
  • Daily Afternoon Tea
  • Daily Night Fare
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner are included daily on board your vessel

Notes

  • 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.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • In the event that a high-speed train is not available due to strikes or technical reasons, the route will be operated by motorcoaches.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

Day 1Arrive in Budapest, Hungary (Embarkation)

Welcome to Hungary’s exciting capital city! This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at an evening welcome reception. Meet our opera singers who be with you throughout this cruise, and entertain you with their beautiful voices and performances. Moreover, we will surprise you with a special concert performance in one of the cities you will be visiting. (Dinner)

NOTE:
Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.

Day 2Budapest

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 Gerbeaud Café, Budapest’s unique energy is positively palatable. On your GUIDED TOUR of the city, see Heroes’ Square as well as the massive hilltop castle complex with its remarkable Fishermen’s Bastion and 11th-century Matthias Church. 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. Visit the beautiful OPERA HOUSE. In your free time this afternoon you may want to walk across Chain Bridge, built in 1849 and a symbol of Budapest; visit St. Stephen’s Basilica with marvelous views of the city from its viewing platform; or stroll along Váci utca, the main shopping street. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 3Bratislava, Slovakia

Today, arrive in Bratislava, situated at the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains and the dynamic capital of Slovakia. Join a Local Guide for a tour of the city, including a GUIDED WALK of its fascinating Old Town, where winding cobblestone streets and narrow alleyways twist and turn to reveal the Town Hall, one of the oldest stone buildings in the city. Also visit gothic ST. MARTIN’S CATHEDRAL, coronation church for the Kingdom of Hungary from the 16th to 19th centuries. Later, enjoy free time to explore on your own. Tonight, depart for Vienna. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 4Vienna, Austria

Once the center of the mighty Habsburg Empire, Austria’s magical capital on the blue Danube is a showcase of gilded architecture. This is home to the lavish Hofburg Imperial Palace complex with its Vienna Boys’ Choir and dazzling Lipizzaner stallions; the neo-renaissance Vienna Opera House; and awe-inspiring St. Stephen’s Cathedral—plus, countless other sights you’ll see on your included GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR. Stroll through the delightful pedestrian Kärntnerstrasse, and be sure to take a break and enjoy a piece of decadent Sachertorte or Apfelstrudel in one of the classic Viennese coffee houses, historic institutions that helped shape Viennese culture! An optional concert is available tonight. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 5Krems–Melk

Head into the heart of the Wachau wine region to Krems for GUIDED SIGHTSEEING. Then, cruise through the beautiful Wachau Valley to reach Melk after lunch. Visit the magnificent 11th-century BENEDICTINE ABBEY which towers over the town and is one of Europe’s largest. It houses an ornate library with over 80,000 printed books and 2,000 manuscripts. Words cannot describe the splendor of its church with its frescoed ceilings, stunning high altar, marble statues, and 210-foot-high cupola. This afternoon you will be able to sample some of the FAMOUS WINES of this region. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 6Passau, Germany

Today, a full day EXCURSION TO SALZBURG acquaints you with some of the sites of “The Sound of Music”, and visit Mozart’s birthplace. Lunch with music entertainment is included . Rejoin your ship in Passau in the early evening. Alternatively, you may choose to stay on the ship and relax as you cruise to Passau, uniquely located where the Inn, Ilz, and Danube Rivers converge. Passau is a maze of narrow cobblestone streets lined with beautiful patrician houses and dominated by St. Stephen’s Cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian baroque architecture. Take in the highlights on the included GUIDED WALK. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 7Regensburg

Dating back to the time of the Celts around 500 BC, Regensburg is one of Germany’s best preserved medieval cities. Architectural highlights of your GUIDED WALK include the Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall), built in the 13th century, and Porta Pretoria, gates to an ancient Roman fort built in 179 AD. Walk across the 12th-century Steinerne Brücke (Stone Bridge), the oldest of its kind in Germany. Grab a beer and enjoy an included SNACK at the Historische Wurstküche (Old Sausage Kitchen), one of Germany’s oldest restaurants. Bask in the vibrant atmosphere and take in the remarkable views along the river. An exclusive CHOIR CONCERT is offered this afternoon. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 8Roth–Nuremberg

This morning, relax on board, before docking in Roth. After lunch, join a GUIDED SIGHTSEEING of the city. This delightful Bavarian town, with its half-timbered houses and market square, is also an industrial center for textile manufacturing. Take pictures of Schloss Ratibor, an ancient hunting lodge built in 1535, with a most picturesque inner courtyard. Or you may prefer to choose a GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR of nearby Nuremberg. 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. Marvel at this thousand-year-old city’s medieval fortifications, extraordinary gothic churches, and the Kaiserburg (Imperial Castle), or join a more specialized “NUREMBERG RALLY GROUNDS” tour. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 9Bamberg

This morning, 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 afternoon, cruise gently along the Main River as you head for Würzburg. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 10Würzburg

Surrounded by verdant hillside vineyards, Würzburg, the “Pearl of the Romantic Road,” makes an immediate impression with imposing Fortress Marienberg perched above town and the 15th-century Alte Mainbrücke (Old Main Bridge). On your included 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 on your own, or perhaps join an optional excursion to medieval Rothenburg. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 11Main River Village

On the banks of the Main River you find cultural gems of small towns, many of them tucked away behind defensive walls and towered gates. With half- timbered houses, narrow streets, and medieval town centers, these picturesque Bavarian villages are a photographer’s delight. Join your Local Guide to experience one of these towns on a GUIDED WALK. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 12Rüdesheim–Rhine Gorge

Today, arrive in Rüdesheim, a quintessential Rhine Valley wine town. Visit SIEGFRIED’S MECHANICAL MUSICAL INSTRUMENT MUSEUM, where you’ll see and hear a large collection of self-playing calliopes and music boxes from the 18th to the early 20th centuries. Enjoy a SPECIAL TREAT, then head downstream from Rüdesheim, through the dramatic RHINE GORGE, the most beautiful stretch of river. Here, ancient castles stand sentry on lofty cliffs rising 400 feet above the waters. Cruise past the legendary rock of the Lorelei, where echoes of enchanted siren song lured unwitting sailors to their doom. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 13Cologne

Arrive in Cologne this morning. One of Germany’s largest cities and capital of the Rhineland, Cologne straddles both sides of the Rhine and is known for its soaring, twin-steepled gothic cathedral. Choose between an included GUIDED CITY WALK or JEWISH HERITAGE WALK. Later, during free time, perhaps look in on the Romano-Germanic Museum, home to a large collection of artifacts from the Roman settlement on which modern Cologne is built—a must for history buffs! The Old Town abounds with cafés, shops, and taverns. Be sure to try a Kölsch pale lager, locally brewed in Cologne for over a hundred years! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 14Amsterdam, Holland

Holland’s sophisticated, modern capital has a rich and fascinating history. This delightful 700-year-old city with its elegant and classic architecture, cafés and restaurants, and lively marketplace has a distinct ambiance. With over 60 museums, Amsterdam has the highest museum density in the world. Get a unique perspective of the city on an included CANAL CRUISE, floating along the elegant grachten lined with stately homes dating back to Amsterdam’s “Golden Age.” There’s free time this afternoon to enjoy the city or perhaps join an optional excursion. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 15Amsterdam (Disembarkation)

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)

Ship Details

Impression

Impression

Part of Avalon's cutting-edge fleet of Suite Ships®, the Avalon Impression came onto the river cruising scene with a bang. This gorgeous ship features two full decks of Panorama SuitesSM with Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows that transform the living space into a unique Open-Air BalconySM. With 200 square feet, Panorama SuitesSM are more than 30% larger than the industry standard, affording you the incomparable opportunity to wake each morning facing the splendid passing scenery. Onboard amenities include an alternative light dining option in the Panorama Bistro, a Fitness Center, complimentary Wi-Fi access, and a spacious Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs, whirlpool, and light al fresco lunches at the Sky Bistro on the Sky Deck.

Included Amenities

  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows
  • Fitness Center
  • Elevator
  • Outside viewing deck
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew and Cruise Director
  • Onboard lectures, activities & nightly entertainment
  • Sky Deck whirlpool
  • Hair salon
  • Biking excursions available in Amsterdam and Durnstein
  • Alternate light lunch and dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Choice of Leisurely, Traditional or Independent sightseeing pace options
  • Local FavoritesSM onboard experiences to bring the customs, cultures and tastes of your destinations to life, including local entertainers, artisans & experts
  • Onboard assistance is available to recommend, reserve and further personalize your cruise
  • Sky Deck game area
  • Well-stocked library
  • Full-size closet mirror
  • Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs and shade awnings
  • Non-smoking interior and staterooms
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Headsets for guided shore excursions in Europe
  • Sightseeing with Certified Local Guides
  • Room service for Continental breakfast & beverages (service fee applies)
  • Complimentary computer use in public areas
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Bicycles available onboard for complimentary check-out
  • Behind-the-scenes galley tour
  • Nordic walking sticks available onboard for complimentary check-out
  • English-speaking TV channels with over 100 free movie options
  • Delectable petite portions of regional specialties, with wines, in the Panorama Bistro
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, including decaf options
  • 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 and chair
  • Luxurious 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 and lighted makeup mirror
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 BalconySM
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • Coffee table
  • Luxurious 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 and chair
  • 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 BalconySM
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • Coffee table
  • Luxurious 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 and chair
  • Sofa
  • Double sinks
DECK PLANS

Hotels

Budapest
Amsterdam

Budapest

Hotel Sofitel Chain Bridge

Hotel Sofitel Chain Bridge Szechenyi Istvan ter 2, Budapest,  Hungary Szechenyi Istvan ter 2
Budapest, Hungary

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Deluxe

This elegant upscale property is located on the left bank of the river Danube, right in the heart of Budapest with Free Wi-Fi internet access throughout the property. The show kitchen restaurant serves refined French-Hungarian cuisine and the vibrant bar offers the chance to sip cocktails overlooking the illuminated Chain Bridge. Leisure facilities include an indoor pool, well-being & fitness center.

Hotel Amenities

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

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

Amsterdam

Room Mate Aitana

Room Mate Aitana Ijdok 6, Amsterdam,  Netherlands Ijdok 6
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

A 284 room designer hotel recently built on the new artificial island in the IJ river and offers free Wi-Fi throughout. The hotel boasts a trendy cosmopolitan restaurant, which serves international food, the lounge bar provides a stylish setting for drinks and there is also a fitness center.

Hotel Amenities

Dry Cleaning
Ice Machine
Free WiFi
Fitness Room
Restaurant On-Site
Concierge desk
Parking/Valet
Bar/Lounge
Elevator
Business Center
Luggage Storage
Room Amenities

Climate Control
Iron/Ironing Board
Coffee Maker
Desk
Non-smoking Rooms
Hair Dryer
Phone
Disabled Access / Rooms
Mini-bar
Television
Complimentary Toiletries
Room Service
In-Room Safe
Wake-Up Calls
Internet Access

 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)

No Excursions are available at this time.

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