Central European Experience - Westbound 2018

12 Day River Cruise from Prague to Paris

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This Central European river cruise will take you from the gothic skyline of Prague to the romantic lights of Paris on the Main, Rhine, and Moselle Rivers.

It begins with two overnights in Prague, one of Europe’s most magical cities. You’ll see Prague’s best-known treasures like St. Vitus Cathedral, a gothic masterpiece that dominates the skyline, and get a taste of the local cuisine with plum dumplings and Pilsner.

Your river cruise will get underway as you sail through the Main Danube Canal with stops in some of Germany’s most intriguing cities. Also sail through the dramatic Rhine Gorge, considered the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine River. See ancient castles standing majestically on cliffs 400 feet above the water. In the heart of the Moselle region, the wine village of Bernkastel, surrounded by Germany’s largest expanse of vineyards, will fascinate you with its narrow streets and half-timbered houses which have been standing since the Middle Ages. Before you leave, we’ll introduce you to some of the famed wines of the area. Along the enchanting Moselle River, make your way to the ancient city of Trier, Germany—believed to be even older than Rome. Many remnants of ancient Rome can still be found, such as imperial baths and the Roman Bridge, with stone pilings dating from 144-152 AD.

Travel by high-speed train to Paris where guided sightseeing shows you the must-see sights: Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre Museum with its glass pyramid contrasting its ancient architecture, and of course the splendid Eiffel Tower. And you will have plenty of free time to relax in a lavish café and explore the “City of Light” on your own.


Dates & Prices Get A Quote Book Online

Highlights & Sightseeing

Days 1-2 Prague: welcome to the Czech Republic; guided sightseeing on Day 2, see the Astronomical Clock and visit Hradčany Castle grounds

Day 3 Prague–Nuremberg (Embarkation): travel by motorcoach to Nuremberg; onboard welcome reception

Day 4 Bamberg: guided sightseeing, see the Old Town Hall

Day 5 Würzburg: guided sightseeing, visit the Bishop’s Residenz

Day 6 Main River Village: guided walk

Day 7 Rüdesheim–Rhine Gorge: visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum in Rüdesheim; special treat; cruise through the Rhine Gorge

Day 8 Bernkastel: guided walk; wine tasting

Day 9 Trier: choice of guided city sightseeing or “Roman Trier” sightseeing in Trier, see the Porta Nigra

Day 10 Remich (Disembarkation)–Paris: travel by motorcoach from Remich to Luxembourg City or Metz; continue by high-speed train to Paris; guided sightseeing

Day 11 Paris: day at leisure

Day 12 Paris: your vacation ends this morning

Meals

  • Welcome & farewell cocktails 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

Day-By-Day Itinerary

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

Day 1

Arrive in Prague, Czech Republic

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

Day 2

(B)

Prague

Prague is a 1,200-year-old city preserved in time, and, unlike other Central European capitals, it was not bombed during the 20th-century wars. On your GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR, see its best-known treasures, such as the Old Town’s Astronomical Clock, dating from the 15th century and once the envy of all of Europe; HRADCANY CASTLE GROUNDS; St. Vitus Cathedral; and the Charles Bridge, the oldest bridge in Prague. Browse the shops for hand-cut crystal or art books. Mix with the locals in Wenceslaus Square, an important meeting point where people demonstrated against the communist regime; watch performers and shop at the market stalls on Charles Bridge; wander around the medieval Old Town, dating from the 10th century; sample the local plum dumplings and Pilsner; or stroll along the Vltava River. Your Cruise Director will have more suggestions for you.

Day 3

(B, D)

Prague–Nuremberg, Germany (Embarkation)

After lunch, drive to Nuremberg, where your river cruise vessel is docked. Before dinner, meet your crew for a welcome reception.

Day 4

(B, L, D)

Bamberg

In the early morning hours, arrive in medieval Bamberg, former residence of one of Germany’s most powerful imperial dynasties and today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your GUIDED WALK 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, enjoy some relaxing time on board as you cruise toward Würzburg on the Main River.

Day 5

(B, L, D)

Würzburg

Arrive in Würzburg during breakfast. Surrounded by verdant hillside vineyards, Würzburg, also known as the “Pearl of the Romantic Road,” makes an immediate impression with imposing Fortress Marienberg perched above town and the 15th-century Alte Mainbrucke (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 might like to join an optional excursion to medieval Rothenburg.

Day 6

(B, L, D)

Main River Village experience

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. 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.

Day 7

(B, L, D)

Rüdesheim–Rhine Gorge

Pretty Rüdesheim is the perfect example of a Rhine Valley wine town, and SIEGFRIED’S MECHANICAL MUSICAL INSTRUMENT MUSEUM is a real surprise. Enjoy a SPECIAL TREAT, then there’s free time to explore the Drosselgasse and pick up some souvenirs. Downstream,the dramatic RHINE GORGE is the most beautiful stretch of river. Pass the legendary rock of the Lorelei, where sweet songs of local beauties lured enchanted sailors to their doom.

Day 8

(B, L, D)

Bernkastel

Early this morning you arrive in the charming wine village of Bernkastel on the Moselle River. With its fascinating narrow streets and half-timbered houses that have stood since the Middle Ages, you’ll enjoy a GUIDED WALK that includes the beautiful marketplace with its renaissance-style Town Hall—built in 1608—and the “pointed house,” built in 1416. The Moselle is famous for its wines, and growers in this area look after Germany’s largest expanse of vineyards, the most celebrated of the vintages being the Bernkasteler Doktor. This evening enjoy a TASTING of some of these well-loved German wines.

Day 9

(B, L, D)

Trier

After breakfast, an excursion takes you to Trier, Germany’s oldest city. Some say Trier is even older than Rome and that it was populated over a thousand years before the Romans arrived. Many Roman remains have survived, including a 20,000-seat amphitheater; the Porta Nigra, the only surviving fortified gate from the original Roman settlement, which still gives access to the town’s center; imperial baths; and the Roman bridge, Germany’s oldest bridge, with stone pilings dating from 144-152 AD—all evidence of this once grand Roman city. Trier also offers pleasant market squares, Germany’s oldest Christian church, and a cornucopia of architectural styles—Roman, baroque, neo-classicism, renaissance, and gothic. A choice of included CITY SIGHTSEEING or the more history-focused “ROMAN TRIER” guided tour, followed by some free time, give you the opportunity to discover this magnificent town. Rejoin your vessel and head for Remich in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.

Day 10

(B)

Remich, Luxembourg (Disembarkation)–Paris, France

Reach Remich during the night and say goodbye to your crew after breakfast. Travel to Luxembourg City or to Metz to board the HIGH-SPEED TRAIN to Paris and enjoy GUIDED sightseeing upon arrival. Known as one of the world’s most romantic and lively cities, Paris is a delight for all your senses. Your INCLUDED CITY SIGHTSEEING shows you magnificent must-see sights, such as Notre Dame Cathedral, the unique Louvre Museum with its glass pyramid as a contrast to its ancient architecture, the commemorative Arc de Triomphe, and the Eiffel Tower.

Day 11

(B)

Paris

Today in your free time, stroll down the Champs-Elysées, with sprawling sidewalks, and lavish cafés, or perhaps visit the world-famous Louvre museum, the Palace of Versailles or Montmartre with its gleaming white Sacré Coeur Basilica and bevy of artists on Place du Tertre. All of this awaits your discovery!

Day 12

(B)

Paris

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Notes

  • In the event that a high-speed train is unavailable due to strikes or technical reasons, the route will be operated by motorcoach.
  • 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 is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.

Ship Details

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Hotels

Prague
Paris

 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). 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)


Prague
Packages
Wurzburg
Bernkastel
Trier
Paris

Prague

Czech Dinner & Folklore Show

Czech Dinner & Folklore Show

Experience the heart and traditions of the Czech Republic at this festive evening featuring the country¿s traditional food, music, song, and dance!

Price Range: $$

Wonders & Wines of Castle Melník

Wonders & Wines of Castle Melník

Travel into the Bohemian wine country for an engaging guided visit of medieval Castle Melník and a tasting of the locally produced wines!

Price Range: $$

The Terrible Tragedy of Terezin

The Terrible Tragedy of Terezin

Prepare for a moving encounter with Terezin, a magnificent 18th-century Austrian fortress with a terrible past. This guided excursion reveals the tragic suffering that took place under the brutal Nazi regime at what became the Terezín Concentration Camp.

Price Range: $$

Grand Masters Concert in Old Prague

Grand Masters Concert in Old Prague

Enjoy a great classical concert in the beautiful setting of the baroque Mirror Chapel of Clementinum.

Price Range: $$

Discover Prague's Hidden Treasures

Discover Prague's Hidden Treasures

Walk with an expert guide around Prague's Charles Bridge and ancient Malá Strana district on the Left Bank of the Vltava River to discover the city's tucked-away treasures.

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: $$

Wurzburg

Discover Rothenburg ob der Tauber

Discover Rothenburg ob der Tauber

The Jewel of the Middle Ages awaits your discovery on this half-day guided excursion to fairytale Rothenburg ob der Tauber on Germany's famed Romantic Road.

Price Range: $$

Bernkastel

Panoramic Moselle Drive

Panoramic Moselle Drive

Experience the wonder and beauty of the Moselle River from a whole new perspective on this enriching guided excursion featuring the world-famous Moselle Bend, a visit to a gothic pilgrimage church, and beer tasting at a medieval Cistercian monastery.

Price Range: $$

Trier

The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, Gibraltar of the North

The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, Gibraltar of the North

Explore the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, one of the smallest sovereign states in Europe, on this mesmerizing half-day guided excursion.

Price Range: $

Paris

Discover Paris at Night

Discover Paris at Night

Discover the magic behind Paris' nickname, the "City of Light", during this delightful evening drive. See the capital's most famous icons and monuments: the Opéra, Louvre's glass pyramid, Arch of Triumph, Eiffel Tower, and more - all lit up and dressed to impress!

Price Range: $

Excursion to Montmartre

Excursion to Montmartre

Experience Montmartre, one the of most artistic and picturesque districts in Paris.

Price Range: $$

Versailles, Palace of the Sun King

Versailles, Palace of the Sun King

Spend part of your day like a French aristocrat, strolling through the halls and gardens of Louis XIV's opulent Palace of Versailles.

Price Range: $$

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