Festive Season on Heart of the Danube with 2 Nights in Budapest (Westbound) 2020

15 Day River Cruise Budapest to Mainz

2020 Information

Board your Avalon Suite Ship® in Budapest after enjoying two nights in the “Pearl of the Danube.” Before sailing, you’ll enjoy a guided city sightseeing tour of the Hungarian capital city to see Budapest’s iconic sights, including Heroes’ Square. Visit vibrant Vienna and picturesque Krems, and sail through the beautiful views of the rich wine-growing region of Austria’s Wachau Valley. Your Danube River cruise continues to Melk, with its magnificent Benedictine Abbey—complete with its fantastic frescoes, statues, library, and ornate pipe organ. While sailing hear an onboard lecture about Christmas traditions in Europe. In Nuremberg, choose from two guided excursions—a classic sightseeing tour, or a tour of the historic Nuremberg Rally Grounds of WWII no-toriety.

Continue your Festive European vacation to enjoy Christmas in the Heart of Germany, including Bam-berg—complete with dozens of nativity scenes of every size. Würzburg is the next stop on your European Christmas cruise Savor the sights, sounds, and confections of Würzburg’s warm Christmas markets before sailing to visit a picturesque Main River Village. Your Danube and Main River cruise vacation concludes in Frankfurt with wonderful experiences and memories of old-fashioned Christmas markets, scenic splendors, and inspiring discoveries to treasure always.


Dates & Prices Get a Quote Book Online

Cruise at-a-Glance

Day 1 Budapest:Welcome to Budapest!Day 2 Budapest:Guided sightseeing, see Heroes’ Square; Christmas marketDay 3 Budapest (Embarkation): Onboard welcome reception Day 4 Budapest–Vienna:Scenic sailing, pass through Bratislava; Austrian cookies tasting on boardDay 5 Vienna: Choice of guided sightseeing, or culinary tour at Christmas marketDay 6 Krems–Wachau Valley–Melk:Guided city walk in Krems; scenic sailing through the Wachau Valley; guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey in MelkDay 7 Passau: Guided walkDay 8 Regensburg: Guided city walk; free time for Christmas markets; onboard Christmas lecture; beer tasting on boardDay 9 Nuremberg:Choice of guided sightseeing, or Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour; Christmas marketDay 10 Nuremberg. Excursion to Munich: Full-day guided tour in MunichDay 11 Nuremberg:Guided tour, see the Old Town Hall; onboard Christmas Traditions lecture Day 12 Bamberg:Guided toursDay 13 Würzburg: Guided tour, visit the Bishop’s Residenz; Christmas marketDay 14 Main river village: Cookie-baking demonstration on board, guided tourDay 15 Frankfurt (Disembarkation):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 5 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

Welcome to Budapest—Hungary’s Captivating Capital

The day is yours to relax and enjoy Eastern Europe’s shining city on the Danube.

Day 2

(B)

BUDAPEST

The Pearl of the Danube in the Heart of Europe

Classic
Enjoy a Guided City Sightseeing, including the iconic Heroes’ Square.

Take in the beauty of Budapest while enjoying a free afternoon exploring such famous sights as the Chain Bridge. Get to know the city’s cafés and pubs, and don’t miss the unique Christmas markets that Budapest hosts every year during the Festive season.

Day 3

(D)

BUDAPEST(EMBARKATION)

Time for Coffee, and Confections

With a free day to explore before your cruise, take time to take photographs on the Royal Palace grounds in this treasure trove of historical architecture. Enjoy the warmth and glow of Christmas tradition before boarding your Suite Ship®.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VIENNA

Day 4

(B, L, D)

VIENNA, AUSTRIA

Vienna Waltzes and the Beautiful Blue Danube

Enjoy sailing the Danube, which shares dozens of miles with Hungary and Slovakia. Relax on the Sky Deck to see the rolling landscape and red-rooftops of the Slovakian capital of Bratislava come into view.

Discovery
Enjoy an Austrian Cookie Tasting while sailing to Vienna.

This evening in Vienna, you may choose to join an Optional Excursion to attend a Royal Waltz Concert for an unforgettable evening of music in an elegant hall.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN VIENNA

Day 5

(B, L, D)

VIENNA

Royal Collections, Amusing Attractions, and Culinary Confections

Classic
Take a Guided Tour of Vienna to see the Imperial Palace complex—the winter residence of the Imperial family, OR:
Discovery
Join a Guided Culinary Tour of Vienna’s magical Christmas Advent Markets to sample Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel.

Join a Guided Optional Excursion to Schönbrunn Palace—a Habsburg Empire summer home for 300 years.

Spend free time on your own to enjoy the Christkindlesmarkt, or relax by the fire’s glow in a Viennese café this evening.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO KREMS

Day 6

(B, L, D)

KREMS

Christmas Markets in the Austria’s Wine Country

Classic
Join a Guided Walk to explore this small valley town, seemingly untouched by the new world.

In your free time perhaps try some roasted chestnuts, one of the most popular treats at the Christmas market.

During lunchtime sail through the picturesque Wachau Valley to Melk.

MELK

Ornate Architecture and Scenic Splendors

Classic
Take a Guided Tour of Melk’s magnificent Benedictine Abbey to marvel at its frescoed ceilings, statues, incredible library, and ornate pipe organ.
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO PASSAU

Day 7

(B, L, D)

PASSAU, GERMANY

Go for Baroque in Passau–Where the Danube, Inn, and Ilz Rivers Meet

Classic
Join a Guided City Walk to learn more about this beautiful “City of Three Rivers”.

Alternatively, join a full-day Guided Optional Excursion to Salzburg—the city of Mozart and learn how Austrians celebrate Christmas.

Meet your ship back in Passau after your full-day selected activities for sailing.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO REGENSBURG

Day 8

(B, L, D)

REGENSBURG

Magical Regensburg—Bavaria’s Medieval Miracle

Classic
Join a Guided City Walk and see the Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall) and Porta Pretoria—built in 179 AD as the entrance to Castra Regina fortress.
Discovery
Enjoy a Christmas Traditions Lecture on board while sailing this afternoon.
Discovery
Later, indulge in a Beer Tasting on board.

This evening, enjoy live entertainment after dinner as you cruise toward Nuremberg.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO NUREMBERG

Day 9

(B, L, D)

NUREMBERG

Living Heritage and History Lessons

Classic
Choose a Guided Sightseeing of Nuremberg—with its medieval architecture, gilded fountain, gothic cathedral, and Kaiserburg Castle, OR;
Classic
Take a Guided Tour of the historic Nuremberg Rally Grounds—used by the Third Reich.

Spend free time on your own to browse the spruce stalls of the Christmas Markets of Nuremberg. Sample favorite Bavarian fare—from dozens of bratwurst varieties, gingerbread, mulled blueberry wine, and countless other culinary delights of the Christkindlmarkt.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG

Day 10

(B, D)

NUREMBERG. EXCURSION TO MUNICH

A King’s Palace and Town Halls in Modern Munich

Classic
Enjoy a Guided City Tour which will show you the highlights of fascinating Munich. See Nymphenburg Palace—a former residence of Bavarian monarchs, along with the Old and New Town Halls of Marienplatz.

Day 11

(B, L, D)

NUREMBERG

Living Heritage and History Lessons

A day to relax and enjoy Nuremberg at your own pace. Stroll through the festively lit streets, buy those last-minute Christmas gifts, or ask your Cruise Director for suggestions of things to do.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BAMBERG

Day 12

(B, L, D)

BAMBERG

Cherished Christmas Customs and Cradle Scenes

Classic
Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Bamberg—medieval home of Germany’s Roman Empire dynasties. Stroll through dozens of Bamberg’s nativity scenes—from miniature to life-size.

Take free time to enjoy the quaint Christmas markets, and warm up with traditional German dumplings, sausage, and a glass of hearty Bavarian ale.

Discovery
Enjoy an onboard Christmas Traditions Lecture while sailing.
OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO WÜRZBURG

Day 13

(B, L, D)

WÜRZBURG

Ornaments, Old Saint Nicholas, and Nutcrackers Sweet

Classic
Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the “Pearl of the Romantic Road” with its Old Main Bridge, towering fortress, and baroque Bishop’s Residence.

You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to the beautiful Bavarian town of Rothenburg. Visit the Käthe Wohlfahrt German Christmas museum—the world’s most extensive collection of traditional German Christmas decorations.

Spend free time enjoying the festive, warm glow of Wurzburg’s Christmas markets.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MAIN RIVER VILLAGE

Day 14

(B, L, D)

MAIN RIVER VILLAGE

Hidden Gifts and Holiday Delights

Classic
Take a Guided Tour of a picturesque village along the Main River.
Discovery
Join a Cookie-Baking Demonstration on board your ship while sailing.
AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO FRANKFURT

Day 15

(B)

FRANKFURT (DISEMBARKATION)

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Notes

  • In the event of technical or water level issues, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or alter the program, including hotel overnight when necessary.
  • Guided Tours, Optional Excursions, activities, sailing and docking schedules may be contingent on weather conditions or other issues outside of our control and could therefore be subject to change at any time.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.


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Heart 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

Imagery II

Imagery II

One of 2016's two new additions to the youngest fleet on Europe's waterways, the Imagery II continues all of Avalon's outstanding Suite Ship traditions. Passengers can choose from two full decks of Panorama Suites, featuring Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows that transform the living space into a unique Open-Air Balcony. At a spacious 200 square feet, Panorama Suites are more than 30% larger than the industry standard, affording the incomparable opportunity to awaken each morning facing the splendid passing scenery. Onboard amenities include complimentary Wi-Fi access, an expanded Fitness Center, an elevator, alternative light dining options in the Panorama Bistro or al fresco grill lunch at the Sky Bistro, and an expansive Sky Deck with whirlpool, premium lounge chairs, a shade system, and deck games.

Included Amenities

Avalon Suite Fleet

  • Complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the ship
  • Panoramic windows throughout the ship
  • 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
  • Elevator
  • Non-smoking interior and staterooms

Fitness & Wellness

  • Fitness Center
  • Avalon Adventure Center
    Your place for active gear and excursions, including
    • Bikes
    • Canoe, kayak and jogging excursions
    • Maps for hiking, biking and jogging routes
    • Fitness and wellness activities
    • FitBits®
    All through your Avalon Adventure HostSM
  • Active shore excursions, both included and optional

Avalon Panorama Suites & Staterooms

  • Open-Air BalconiesSM and Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows in all Panorama Suites
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM with choice of mattress firmness
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products & hairdryer
  • Large bathroom featuring shower with glass door
  • Wide selection of free movie channels and English-speaking TV
  • Individual climate control and in-room safe
  • Full-size closet and mirror
  • Additional under-bed storage
  • Complimentary bottled water daily

Staterooms & Suites

Avalon Deluxe Stateroom (Cat. 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
  • USB Ports
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • 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 English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • In-room safe
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Two windows
  • Writing desk and chair
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
  • USB Ports
  • 6-person sitting area
  • Writing desk and chair
  • Sofa
  • 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 English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Make-up mirror
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window with Open-Air BalconySM
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • Coffee table
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
  • USB Ports
  • 6-person sitting area
  • Writing desk and chair
  • Sofa
  • Double sinks
  • 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 English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Make-up mirror
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window with Open-Air BalconySM
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • Coffee table
DECK PLANS

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)

No Excursions are available at this time.