Prague to Bucharest River Cruise - Avalon® Danube Cruises

Grand Danube Cruise with Transylvania – Eastbound 2017

20 Day River Cruise from Prague to Bucharest

2017 Information. Switch to 2018 »

Discover some of the continent’s best-kept secrets on this river cruise through Central and Eastern Europe, from Prague to Bucharest. Spend three nights in both Prague and Bucharest, and enjoy plenty of leisure time in Budapest and Vienna to explore on your own. Guided sightseeing in each city shows you the highlights, with inside visits of the Hradcany Castle grounds in Prague, Melk’s awe-inspiring Benedictine Abbey, Kalemegdan Fortress in Belgrade, and Tsarevet’s Fortress in Veliko Târnovo, and the National Art Museum in Bucharest. Also cruise through the dramatic Iron Gates gorge and Main Danube Canal, visit the Lepinski Vir archaeological site, enjoy an organ concert in Pécs, and marvel at the diverse rock formations of Belogradchik. From Bucharest travel into Transylvania to visit Dracula’s Bran Castle—built in 1377, a guided visit of Brasov, as well as a guided visit of Peles Castle.. All of this and more await you on this marvelous cruise vacation!


Dates & Prices Get A Quote Book Online

Highlights & Sightseeing

Cruise: deluxe 13-night cruise in an outside stateroom with Avalon’s exclusive Comfort Collection BedsSM

Days 1-3 Prague: welcome to the Czech Republic; guided sightseeing on Day 2, see the Astronomical Clock and visit Hradčany Castle grounds; free time on Day 3

Day 4 Prague–Nuremberg (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception

Day 5 Nuremberg–Roth: choice of Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour or guided sightseeing in Roth

Day 6 Regensburg: guided walk; enjoy a snack at the Historische Wurstküche; beer tasting

Day 7 Passau: guided walk

Day 8 Melk–Vienna: guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey in Melk

Day 9 Vienna: guided sightseeing

Day 10 Budapest: guided sightseeing, see Fishermen’s Bastion and Heroes’ Square

Day 11 Budapest: day at leisure

Day 12 Mohács. Excursion to Pécs: guided sightseeing in Pécs, visit the underground tombs; organ concert

Day 13 Belgrade: guided sightseeing in Belgrade, visit Kalemegdan Fortress

Day 14 Iron Gates: visit Lepenski Vir archaeological site; cruise through the dramatic Iron Gates gorge

Day 15 Cetate–Vidin–Belogradchik: visit the cultural port of Cetate, special tasting; guided sightseeing to Vidin’s fortress and Belogradchik’s rock formations

Day 16 Rousse. Excursion to Veliko Târnovo & Arbanassi: guided sightseeing, visit Tsarevet’s Fortress in Veliko Târnovo, and the Ethnographical Museum and Church of the Nativity in Arbanassi; or guided sightseeing of Rousse

Day 17 Oltenita (Disembarkation)–Bucharest: guided sightseeing in Bucharest

Day 18 Bucharest. Excursion to Transylvania–Brasov: guided visit of Dracula’s Bran Castle

Day 19 Brasov–Bucharest: guided sightseeing in Brasov and Peles Castle

Day 20 Bucharest: your vacation ends this morning

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

Enjoy a local treat of sausage, sauerkraut & beer, and attend an onboard performance of Bulgarian Folk Dances.

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 is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • Cruise-Only Available: This vacation can also be taken as a Cruise-Only option starting at the embarkation city and ending at the disembarkation city, and does not include overnight land stays. If you are interested in this option, please contact a Travel Consultant for more information.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

Day 1Arrive in Prague, Czech Republic

Welcome to Prague, capital of the Czech Republic. This fascinating city straddles the Vltava River with domes, cupolas, spires, and pinnacles highlighting its skyline. The remainder of the day is free to start exploring.

Day 2Prague

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. A Local Guide shows you its 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 shops for hand-cut crystal or art books. Mix with the locals in Wenceslaus Square, where people demonstrated against the communist regime; or watch performers on Charles Bridge. (Breakfast)

Day 3Prague

Enjoy a free day to explore the city at your own pace. Perhaps visit the Communist Museum; sample the local plum dumplings and Pilsner; or stroll along the Vltava River. Your Cruise Director will have other suggestions for things to do. (Breakfast)

Day 4Prague–Nuremberg, Germany (Embarkation)

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

Day 5Nuremberg–Roth

This morning, the choice is yours—join a Certified Local Guide for a NUREMBERG RALLY GROUNDS tour, or a GUIDED SIGHTSEEING of the nearby town of Roth. This delightful town, with it’s half-timbered houses and market square, is also an industrial center for textile manufacturing. In contrast, take pictures of Schloss Ratibor, an ancient hunting lodge, built in 1535, with a most picturesque inner courtyard. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 6Regensburg

Arrive in Regensburg today. Dating back to the time of the Celts around 500 BC, Regensburg is one of Germany’s best preserved medieval cities. Established during the Holy Roman Empire and the only German city not bombed during WWII, Regensburg has at least 1,300 listed buildings of “historic interest.” 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. Wander through the city’s lanes and alleys to discover the many mansions with high towers. Wealthy families built these towers to emphasize their status and wealth during the Middle Ages, and many still remain today. 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. Here—where the locals congregate—feel the vibrant atmosphere and take in the remarkable views along the river. Before dinner, we’ll introduce you to some of Germany’s FAMOUS BEERS! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 7Passau

This morning, dock in Passau. Uniquely located where the Inn, Ilz, and Danube Rivers converge, Passau is a maze of narrow cobblestone streets lined with beautiful patrician houses. St. Stephen’s Cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian baroque architecture, houses one of the world’s largest church organs with 17,774 pipes. Take in the highlights on the included GUIDED WALK. Alternatively, choose from several full-day optional excursions while your ship continues to sail into Austria. Rejoin your vessel in the late afternoon. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 8Melk, Austria–Vienna

Enjoy a GUIDED VISIT of Melk’s magnificent 11th-century BENEDICTINE ABBEY, one of Europe’s largest monasteries. The abbey houses an ornate library with over 80,000 printed books and 2,000 manuscripts. Words cannot describe the splendor of the church with its frescoed ceilings, stunning high altar, marble statues, and 210-foot-high cupola. The view from the terrace of the abbey over the Danube and surrounding countryside is breathtaking! Then, cruise through the picturesque Wachau Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Pass the magnificent baroque Stiftskirche with its blue façade, the landmark of Dürnstein, before arriving in Vienna this evening. Known as the “City of Music,” it inspired the creative genius of Mozart, Beethoven, and Strauss. An optional concert is available tonight. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 9Vienna

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 shown to you by your Local Guide during your included CITY TOUR. Shop in 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! In the late afternoon, leave Vienna for Budapest. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 10Budapest, Hungary

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 SIGHTSEEING TOUR, see Heroes Square as well as the massive hilltop castle complex with its remarkable Fishermen’s Bastion and 11th-century Matthias Church, the coronation spot of several Hungarian monarchs. 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. You may even want to walk across Chain Bridge, built in 1849 and a symbol of Budapest. Perhaps visit St. Stephen’s Basilica; shop at the Great Market Hall and purchase paprika at one of its 180 vendor stalls; wander around the Royal Palace grounds; or stroll along Váci utca, the main shopping street. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 11Budapest

A full day to explore on your own and do as you please. If you need suggestions for things to do, your Cruise Director can help. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 12Mohács. Excursion to Pécs

This morning, enjoy some leisurely cruising before arriving in Mohács, the last stop in Hungary. After lunch, an excursion takes you to Pécs. Established by the Romans in the 2nd century, this was a flourishing and important town for Christianity by the 4th century. These early Christians left behind many underground burial chambers with memorial chapels above ground. With your Local Guide, visit the UNDERGROUND TOMBS—now part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site—many of which have splendidly decorated murals with Christian themes. Later, enjoy an ORGAN CONCERT. Pécs is also a rich showcase of Turkish architecture and home to Turkish mosques, striking churches, and an enjoyable atmosphere around its restaurants and cafés. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 13Belgrade, Serbia

One of the oldest cities in Europe, the capital of Serbia is situated at the confluence of the Danube and Sava Rivers. A LOCAL GUIDE will be proud to show you its main sights, including St. Sava, the world’s largest Orthodox church. Also visit the city’s principal landmark, KALEMEGDAN FORTRESS, which showcases the history of Belgrade. Built in stages between the 1st and 18th centuries, the fortress witnessed many battles and observed the courage of those trying to defend the city from conquerors. The surrounding park is the most beautiful and largest park in Belgrade. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 14Excursion to Lepenski Vir–Iron Gates

This morning, dock at Donji Milanovac, where a short drive takes you to the impressive LEPENSKI VIR EXHIBITION CENTER, which houses area archaeological artifacts and from where you have unique views of the Danube Gorge. Return to your ship for lunch and then cruise what must surely be the most spectacular scenery of the dramatic gorge of the IRON GATES, a narrow and formerly very dangerous passage dividing Europe’s Alps in the northwest from the Carpathians in the southeast and forming a natural border between Serbia and Romania. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 15Cetate, Romania–Vidin, Bulgaria. Excursion to Belogradchik

This morning stop in Cetate, an old Danubian grain shipping port, now turned into a cultural center. The owner will explain the concept of this fascinating venture before you have a chance to see for yourself and to TASTE some of the locally made products. Then on to Vidin, an important Danube port, situated in northwestern Bulgaria. Its medieval FORTRESS, known as “Baba Vidin,” is the town’s primary landmark. It served as Vidin’s main defensive installation during the course of the Middle Ages and is the only entirely preserved medieval fortress in the country. It is now a fortress museum and has been restored to its former appearance. In nearby Belogradchik, view the eclectic group of ROCK FORMATIONS on the western slopes of the Balkan Mountains. Sculpted by natural elements for more than 200 million years and with a variety of sizes and shapes, the Belogradchik Rocks are spectacular! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 16Rousse. Excursion to Veliko Târnovo & Arbanassi

A comfortable ride from the river port of Rousse is the ancient Bulgarian capital of Veliko Târnovo. Situated on three hills surrounding the Yantra River, the city was a natural fortress with ancient stone houses clinging to the steep slopes. One of the oldest towns in Bulgaria (dating back to 4300 BC), the oldest part is Tsarevets Hill, home of the ROYAL FORTRESS, and the Patriarch's Church. With your LOCAL GUIDE, discover this town that played an important role in Bulgaria’s history. Then, journey to Arbanassi. Founded in the 15th century, the historic village of Arbanassi is best known for its examples of Bulgarian Revival architecture and its ETHNOGRAPHICAL MUSEUM, a 400-year-old house preserved as a museum. Visit the CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY, one of the oldest churches in Arbanassi, and see its outstanding collection of frescoes. Return to your ship in Rousse, Bulgaria’s largest inland port. If you do not wish to participate in the full-day excursion, remain on board and relax, then join a GUIDED TOUR of Rousse. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 17Oltenita, Romania (Disembarkation)–Bucharest

After breakfast, say goodbye to your crew. Bucharest, Romania’s lively capital, is only a short drive from Oltenita. It's wide, tree-lined boulevards and Arc de Triomphe—built in 1922 to honor the bravery of Romanian soldiers who fought in WWI—have gained it the name “Paris of the East.” Much recent history has taken place in the city. During the INCLUDED TOUR this afternoon, see the main sights including Royal Palace Square, the scene of riots in 1989, which led to the collapse of the communist dictatorship. In your free time, discover this interesting city even further. Stroll down Calea Victoriei, “Victory Avenue,” Bucharest’s most historic and alluring street. Initially built in 1692, today it is lined with shops, museums, churches, restaurants, cafés, and fine houses. (Breakfast)

Day 18Bucharest. Excursion to Transylvania–Brasov

Head out of the city to your first stop, a visit to BRAN CASTLE, of Dracula fame, built in 1377 and assumed to be the home of Romanian vampires. Then, on to Brasov for the night, with a free afternoon to explore on your own. (B,L, D)

Day 19Brasov–Bucharest

This morning join a local expert for GUIDED SIGHTSEEING of Brasov. In the afternoon drive into the Carpathians to Sinaia to visit PELES CASTLE, considered to be one of the most beautiful in Europe, before returning to Bucharest. (B, L)

Day 20Bucharest

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)

Ship Details

Please try again

Hotels

Prague
Bucharest
Brasov

Prague

Hilton Prague

Hilton Prague Pobrezni 1, Prague,   Czech Republic Pobrezni 1
Prague, Czech Republic

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

Striking Atrium-style 11-story Hotel located in city center, on the right bank of Vltava River, near Nove Mesto & Josefov.

Hotel Amenities

Restaurant On-Site
Pool
Concierge desk
Dry Cleaning
ATM
Beauty Salon
Luggage Storage
Parking/Valet
Gift Shop
Bar/Lounge
Business Center
Spa Services
Currency Exchange
Fitness Room
Elevator
Room Amenities

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

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

Bucharest

Athenee Palace Hilton

Athenee Palace Hilton 1-3 Episcopiei, Bucharest,  Romania 1-3 Episcopiei
Bucharest, Romania

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

Explore Bucharest from the glorious Athenee Palace Hilton Bucharest hotel, one of the city's most sophisticated and prestigious landmarks. The hotel is conveniently located in the heart of the city and enjoys views of Revolution Square and is close to Bucharest's many local attractions.

Hotel Amenities

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

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

Brasov

Aro Palace

Aro Palace Bdul Eroilor 27-29, Brasov,   Romania Bdul Eroilor 27-29
Brasov, Romania

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Deluxe

With a history of over 70 years, inaugurated with great fast in 1939, Aro Palace is the only 5 star hotel in Brasov. In 1963 it was extended by building a new assembly, and in 2005 was upgraded to five star standards. The hotel has a privileged position being situated in the center of town. Because of the experience accumulated over the years, we managed to exceptionally harmonize business with pleasure and provide a service guaranteed to meet your needs.

Hotel Amenities

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

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

 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)

Similar Cruises