A Taste of the Danube – Westbound 2019

8 Day River Cruise Budapest to Vienna

2019 Information. Switch to 2020 »

From the Gypsy violins of Budapest to the romantic sounds of Vienna, the “City of Music,” this Europe river cruise highlights the natural beauty of Austria’s Wachau Valley, and the fascinating capital cities of Hungary, Slovakia, and Austria.

Enjoy two nights in Budapest, where guided sightseeing shows you the highlights of this vibrant capital. You’ll have plenty of time to explore on your own—take pictures from Fishermen’s Bastion, walk across Chain Bridge, or enjoy a cream cake in the renowned Gerbeaud Café. Board your river cruise vessel and head upriver to Bratislava. For a 58-mile stretch, the middle of the Danube forms the border between Hungary and Slovakia, and guided sightseeing awaits you in Slovakia’s capital.

In Melk, you will visit Austria’s majestic Benedictine Abbey, one of Europe’s largest monasteries, sitting high on a bluff so you can take in the breathtaking views of the Danube River and surrounding countryside. Cruise through the picturesque Wachau Valley and spend free time in Dürnstein, overlooked by the ruins of the castle where England’s King Richard the Lionheart was imprisoned in 1192, and best known for its magnificent baroque Stiftskirche with its blue façade.

To end your river cruise, there’s guided sightseeing in Austria’s capital, Vienna, with time on your own to relax, perhaps visit the famous Sacher Hotel for a taste of Sachertorte (a special chocolate cake), and stroll along the famous pedestrian street of Kärntnerstrasse. Sweet surprises with new experiences along your Danube River cruise are sure to give you more than a taste of the many beautiful discoveries of this legendary river.


Dates & Prices Get a Quote Book Online

Cruise at-a-Glance

Day 1 Budapest: Welcome to BudapestDay 2 Budapest: Guided tour, see Heroes’ SquareDay 3 Budapest (Embarkation): Onboard welcome receptionDay 4 Bratislava: Guided sightseeing, visit St. Martin’s CathedralDay 5 Melk–Wachau Valley–Dürnstein: Guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey in Melk; cruise through the Wachau ValleyDay 6 Vienna (Disembarkation): Choice of early guided tour, with breakfast at a Viennese café, or guided sightseeingDay 7 Vienna: Day at leisureDay 8 Vienna:Your vacation ends this morning

Cruise YourWay

Avalon makes it easy to experience vacation your way with seamless extension options before and after your cruise. Your Way offers added nights in a selection of locales. From Budapest to Barcelona, you can spend a little or a lot more time getting to know more on shore with Your Way custom itineraries.

View 2 Your Way Cruise Options »

Always Included

You've always forged your own path...with your own distinct perspective of looking at the world. Avalon Waterways presents a river cruise experience with your unique style in mind—offering expansive views and wider perspectives. That's why we've designed a cruise experience that's just a bit different.

Here are just some of the features and amenities you'll experience on board our Avalon ships. See the Ship Amenities Section below for more information about the amenities in our fleet’s unique ships.

Throughout the Ship
Suites & Staterooms
Health & Fitness
Dining

Throughout the Ship:

  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Panoramic windows
  • Elegant, contemporary design & decor
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew & Cruise Director
  • Sky Deck with whirlpool, shade awnings, game area and premium lounges
  • Covered Observation Lounge
  • Club Lounge with 24-hour self-serve beverage station with complimentary cappuccinos, lattes, tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, as well as treats throughout the day

Suites & Staterooms:

  • Comfort Collection BedsSM with choice of mattress firmness
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products
  • Large bathroom featuring shower with glass door
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with free movie channels
  • Individual climate control and in-room safe
  • USB Ports
  • Complimentary bottled water daily
  • And, much more.

Health & Fitness:

  • Bikes
  • Canoe, kayak and jogging excursions
  • Maps for hiking, biking and jogging routes
  • Fitness and wellness activities
  • Fitbits®
  • All through your Avalon Adventure HostSM

Dining

  • FlexDining® for more venue and seating options, including flexible seating times in our Panorama Dining Room
  • Avalon Fresh® healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with every lunch and dinner
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast options
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch at Sky Grill on the Sky Deck (weather permitting)
  • Daily Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, sweet treats & sandwiches
  • Daily four-course a la carte dinner in the Panorama Dining Room with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrees and desserts. Includes selections of regional recipes, Western dishes and vegetarian options.
  • Enjoy a tasting menu with a view in the Panorama Bistro - a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere while lingering over several satisfying selections
  • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions and dinners with sparkling wine and canapés
  • Panorama Lounge featuring premium spirits and Avalon specialty cocktails, along with local entertainment special guests
  • Cocktails available on the Sky Deck
  • Fresh fruit available throughout the day

Avalon has designed included activities with a choice of experiences. We invite you to select the tours, activities, and events that interest you most, so you can experience your cruise your way. There are 3 types of included shore excursion on every Europe cruise:

Classic
Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.
Discovery
We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.
Active
Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.
  • Plus independent exploration options and use of our exclusive AvalonGO APP.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

(B) = Breakfast   (L) = Lunch   (D) = Dinner

Day 1

BUDAPEST, HUNGARY

Two Nights in Beautiful Budapest!

Enjoy a free day to discover, dine, and unwind in the captivating capital of historic Hungary.

Day 2

(B)

BUDAPEST

Hungarian Dishes, Healing Waters, and Historic Wonders

Classic
Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour to see majestic Heroes’ Square and Budapest’s classic sites.

With plenty of free time this afternoon, experience the curative waters of Budapest’s thermal baths, or set out for a hike to explore the countryside on either side of the Danube. Take time to shop for treasures, including handcrafted embroidery, Herend porcelain, or Budapest’s best baked goods.

This evening, secure your reservation for an Optional Dinner with a sumptuous Hungarian food–and–wine pairing.

Day 3

(B, D)

BUDAPEST (EMBARKATION)

Time for Cobblestones, Coffee, and Confections

Spend free time strolling the cobblestone streets, browsing art galleries, sipping coffee, and sampling sweets before boarding your Danube cruise for a welcome dinner this evening.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BRATISLAVA

Day 4

(B, L, D)

BRATISLAVA, SLOVAKIA

Castles, Vineyards, and Cosmopolitan Culture

Classic
Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Old Town’s cobblestone streets to Town Hall. Visit the gothic halls of St. Martin’s Cathedral–Kingdom of Hungary’s centuries–old coronation church, OR:
Active
Grab Nordic walking sticks and follow your Avalon Adventure Host on a Hike to Bratislava Castle.

Alternatively, in your free time take a bicycle and a picnic from the ship to explore the local sights along the Danube. Later, enjoy onboard entertainment by local musicians.

AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MELK

Day 5

(B, L, D)

MELK, AUSTRIA

Ornate Architecture and Scenic Splendors Awaken the Imagination and the Senses

Classic
Join a morning Guided Sightseeing Tour of Melk’s 11th–century Benedictine Abbey. Explore its frescoes, statues, library, and spectacular pipe organ in the monastery’s lofty perch above the Danube.

Take a relaxing break on the Sky Deck as you sail through awe–inspiring views through the Wachau Valley and the wine region surrounding Dürnstein.

DÜRNSTEIN

Idyllic Vistas and Vineyards Beyond the Blue Stiftskirche

Active
Join your Avalon Adventure Host for a hike up the hillside to castle ruins for breathtaking views.

Spend free time in Dürnstein at your leisure or biking through the vineyards in the Wachau Valley.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VIENNA

Day 6

(B)

VIENNA (DISEMBARKATION)

A Feast for the Soul in Vienna–Music, Food, Art, and Architecture

Classic
Venture into the Habsburg empire with a morning Guided City Tour of Vienna’s gilded landmarks. See the Imperial Palace complex–the winter residence of the Imperial Family, the historic Vienna Opera House and stunning St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

Or you may choose to set out earlier as Vienna awakens:

Discovery
Take an Early Riser Walking Tour that includes breakfast at a Viennese café followed by an exclusive viewing of the Habsburg family’s private art collection at the Museum of Fine Arts–the perfect start to your stay in Vienna.

Optional tours today include a Guided Tour of magnificent Schönbrunn Palace, the former imperial summer residence of Habsburg royalty. You may also choose to attend an Optional Excursion to a Royal Waltz Concert for an unforgettable evening of music in an elegant hall.

Day 7

(B)

VIENNA

Vienna Favorites—Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel

Enjoy a free day to explore the city at your own pace.

Choose a Guided Optional Hiking or Biking Tour through the vineyards for an active city and countryside excursion.

Spend free time with a tram ride to discover the adventure, tradition, and Viennese charm of The Prater amusement park. Visit one of Vienna’s marvelous museums and sample authentic Austrian pastries in a local bakery.

Day 8

(B)

VIENNA

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

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); the responsibility for obtaining a visa rests with the traveler.

Similar Cruises


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A Taste of the Danube – Westbound

Start Sooner, Stay Longer

Start your vacation earlier or stay longer with destination options before or after your Avalon cruise.

Ship Details

Hotels

 Optional Excursions

No matter what you’re into: food, wine, history, art, music or anything else, we give you the freedom to personalize your vacation with optional excursions that speak to your interests.

When you book your excursions with us, you can be assured that every optional excursion that we offer coordinates with the free time that you'll have in your destination, so you'll never have conflicts between included and optional activities. Our team of travel experts carefully selects each optional excursion that we offer to ensure that you receive the highest quality at a great value. Our tried-and-true partners have a finger on the pulse of the city in which they operate so they deliver the very best experiences. We offer experiences you cannot create on your own and because you’re booking with us, we coordinate all your transportation and timing needs.

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). Optional excursions are available for purchase on our MyAvalon site 90 days prior to the tour start date.

Price Ranges

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


Budapest
Durnstein
Vienna
Packages

Budapest

Belle Époque Art & Architecture of Budapest

Belle Époque Art & Architecture of Budapest

Travel back to the Golden Age of Budapest's Belle Époque on this captivating guided excursion featuring Andrássy Avenue, glass-painter Miksa Róth's Memorial House, and the crown jewel of Budapest: the incomparable Hungarian State Opera House!

Price Range: $$

Bites & Highlights of Budapest

Bites & Highlights of Budapest

Experience some of Budapest's most famous sights and most delectable foods on this unique guided foodie tour!

Price Range: $$

Wine Tasting in the Hungarian Countryside

Wine Tasting in the Hungarian Countryside

Travel into the beautiful Hungarian countryside for an enriching half-day discovery of the Etyek wine region, including two wine cellar visits with wine tasting.

Price Range: $$

Durnstein

Biking in the Wachau Valley

Biking in the Wachau Valley

From the scenic banks of the mighty Danube River to lovely terraced vineyards and quaint villages, this exciting guided bike tour shows you the best of Austria's famed Wachau Valley!

Price Range: $$

Vienna

Classical Concert

Classical Concert

Enjoy a spellbinding evening of classical works by Mozart and Johann Strauss, performed brilliantly by professional Salon Orchestra Alt-Wien musicians in one of Europe's prettiest venues.

Price Range: $$

Schönbrunn Palace, Crown Jewel of Vienna

Schönbrunn Palace, Crown Jewel of Vienna

Visit magnificent Schönbrunn Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and former summer residence of the Habsburg imperial family.

Price Range: $$

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: $$$$