Majestic Rivers of Europe: Castles, Cathedrals & Fairytales - 2019

14-night river cruise with Mainz, Cologne, Rudesheim, Offenbach, Marktheidenfeld, Würzburg, Bamberg, Nuremberg, Passau, Vienna, Budapest
  • PRIVATE CONCERT AT THE KURSALON MUSIC HALL IN VIENNA
  • CITY TOUR OF BUDAPEST, A UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE
  • YOUR CHOICE OF GUIDED TOURS IN VIENNA: SCHONBRUNN PALACE OR THE MUSEUM OF ART HISTORY
DATES & PRICES
STARTING FROM
$2,999
  • $199
    PER DAY
  • 15
    DAYS
  • 29
    TOURS
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16 DAYS FROM $3,198
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Amsterdam, Netherlands

4 DAYS FROM $899

Bratislava, Slovakia & Prague, Czech Republic

6 DAYS FROM $999

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Marvel at storybook castles and cruise past vineyard-covered hillsides on this beautiful river cruise in Europe. Raise a stein at a historic brewery. Savor the flavors of the Rhine Valley at a barbecue with live music in a German village. Hear waltz music in Vienna (we are the only river cruise company that takes you there for two full days!) and admire the view across the Danube from Fisherman’s Bastion in Budapest. Visit pretty half-timbered river villages and stroll the medieval jewels of Regensburg and Würzburg.

You’re invited to come aboard for our all-time, top-rated riverboat cruise as we follow history down the Rhine, Main, and Danube rivers. Thirteen guided tours, including nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites, as well as entertaining and informative shipboard lectures and Cultural Connections, transform a river cruise into a delightful immersion in the sights, sounds, flavors, and most of all, the beauty, along Europe’s great rivers. 

Traveling solo on your European tour? Vantage is the only company in the cruise line industry whose river ships include cabins built specifically for solo travelers, with free Single Supplements. We’ve also designed this itinerary to give you more opportunities for independent exploring and for staying active. Take one of the ship’s bikes for a spin along the shore, join a longer walk or hike, and sign up for onboard cooking classes.

Mainz to Budapest

Pre-Trip Extension

Amsterdam, Netherlands

FROM: $899 PER PERSON | 4 DAYS | $225 PER DAY
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DAY 1:

Fly overnight to Frankfurt, Germany

Today, fly overnight to Frankfurt, Germany. You can also begin your journey earlier with an optional pre-trip extension to Amsterdam.

DAY 2:

Enjoy the Mainz attraction

Today, you’ll land in Frankfurt. If you purchased your airfare from Vantage, a Vantage representative will meet you and arrange transfer to the pier in Mainz, where you will board your Deluxe river ship and officially begin your European river cruise.

Included Meals:

Dinner

DAY 3:

Sip Kölsch and explore the cultural center of Cologne

This morning, take a walking tour of this historic German cultural center. Cultural Connection: During the afternoon’s cruising, join your Cruise Director in the lounge for a lively German lesson — pick up a few key words and phrases, to use when interacting with locals. This evening, we'll enjoy a Welcome Reception and Dinner as well as some onboard entertainment.

Culinary feature: Enjoy a tasting of Kölsch beer, a signature brew that is only made here in Cologne. 

Biking Opportunity: Enjoy this scenic path along the iconic Rhine River, with terrific views of the Cologne Cathedral and Hohenzollern Bridge, during this easy 5-mile route. Click here for details.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 4:

Rhine Valley views; Rudesheim personalized for you

After some scenic sailing in the morning — during which we'll marvel at the scenery and hear about local lore — you'll arrive in Rudesheim, where you'll have your choice of two tours. The first is a cable car ride to the historic Niederwald Monument, which overlooks the Rhine Valley and commemorates the unification of Germany in the late 19th century. Or, embark on a mini-train ride to Siegfried's Musikkabinett, an amusing museum dedicated to self-playing music and its instruments. Afterwards, you'll return to the ship for dinner, which will be followed by onboard entertainment.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 5:

Day-tripping through romantic Heidelberg

Today, set off from Frankfurt for a full-day excursion to Heidelberg, a UNESCO site that is home to Germany’s oldest college, Heidelberg University. Unforgettable Moment: In Heidelberg, you’ll tour 15th-century Heidelberg Castle, one of the most famous of European castles, an imposing Gothic-Renaissance ruin of red stone that illustrates the history of Germany. Ride the funicular from the castle to the town center, where you’ll enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and then have free time to explore.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 6:

Exploring village life in Marktheidenfeld, with a BBQ lunch and traditional live music

Unforgettable Moment: The highlight of our day today will be a delightful half-day tour of a local German village, during which we’ll savor a BBQ lunch and take in some traditional live music. Back on the ship, a glassblowing demonstration introduces us to the artistry of this age-old craft. 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 7:

Tour and winetasting inside the Würzburg Residenz

Arriving in Würzburg, set out on a half-day tour of the Würzburg Residenz, a baroque European castle that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your tour includes a visit to the wine cellar for a tasting and lecture. Alternatively, you may join an optional tour of medieval Rothenburg ob der Tauber. Cultural Connection: Late this afternoon, attend a lecture on “Germany in the 21st Century: Changes & Challenges.”

Biking Opportunity: Explore the scenic banks of the Main River during this medium 17-mile route. Click here for details.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
Optional Tour: Full-day Rothenburg Tour with Christmas Museum

Full-day Rothenburg Tour with Christmas Museum

  • Approximate Cost: $69 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 6 hours
  • Location: Würzburg, Germany
  • When: Full-day tour

Picturesque Rothenburg ob der Tauber features winding cobbled lanes lined with half-timbered houses, as well as massive towers and intact city walls around the Old Town where one can take in views over both the city and the Tauber valley. Known for its “eternal Christmas” atmosphere, the town’s various shops sell beautiful, handcrafted Christmas gifts and souvenirs all year round. Come December, the area comes to life with the famous Christmas Market, one of the most romantic markets in Germany. You’ll take a walking tour and pay a visit to the Christmas Museum; plus, you’ll enjoy some free time to explore the shops and take in the stunning views.


Note: Christmas Museum is not available during holiday season departures.

DAY 8:

Altmühl Valley sailing and walking tour of Bamberg

Cultural Connection: While we cruise this morning, attend a lecture on the Rhine-Main-Danube Canal, one of Europe’s greatest engineering feats. Later, we’ll pass through the locks of the canal and enjoy a day sailing through the lovely Altmühl valley. Arriving in Bamberg, we'll embark on a fascinating walking tour of the historic center of town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There is also an opportunity to partake in a cooking demonstration today, one of several available on your journey.

Culinary Connection: Learn how to make Swabian meat pockets during an onboard demonstration this evening, a regional treat customary in southwestern Germany.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 9:

Nuremberg, customized for you — tour the town’s highlights or explore its WWII history

This morning you'll have your choice of two city tours of Nuremberg. Choose “Nuremberg and World War II” to explore the city’s World War II history and visit the Documentation Center, or take the “Highlights of Nuremberg” tour that includes a visit to the delightful Toy Museum. This evening, chat with your fellow travelers during cocktail hour in the lounge and enjoy a delectable dinner onboard.

Culinary feature: Watch a cooking demonstration on kasspatzle (the German version of macaroni and cheese).

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 10:

Regensburg: Roman architecture and Bavarian charms

Explore Regensburg today. This city has a history stretching back to the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius, and you’ll get to know its heritage during a walking tour. Admire the impressive cathedral, as well as the famous stone bridge which was built in the 12th century. Cultural Connection: Later, back on the ship, enjoy some local entertainment.

Biking Opportunity: Explore Regensburg’s monuments and history, including Walhalla Memorial Hall, during a medium 14-mile route. Click here for details.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 11:

Music and painting in picturesque Passau

Today, join a walking tour of baroque Passau, known as the "town of three rivers" because it's located where two tributaries join the Danube river. On your tour, enjoy an organ concert inside St. Stephan’s Cathedral. 

Biking Opportunity: Follow the beautiful Ilz River along a scenic 10-mile route (moderate level). Click here for details.

Painting Lesson: Join a local artist to learn how to capture the scenery with a brush.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 12:

Waltzing into Vienna and Liechtenstein Palace

Relax as your ship cruises the Danube River through the scenic Wachau Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Landscape, on your way to Vienna. After arriving in Vienna, you'll enjoy a half-day tour that includes a visit to Liechtenstein Palace. Later, take some time on your own, or join us on an optional Heurigen Dinner. 

Culinary feature: Take part in another cooking demonstration today, during which you'll learn about Tiroler Gröstl.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
Optional Tour: Viennese Heurigen Dinner, Wine & Music

Viennese Heurigen Dinner, Wine & Music

  • Approximate Cost: $99 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 3.5 hours
  • Location: Vienna, Austria
  • When: Evening tour, including dinner

The congenial atmosphere of cozy, family-style wine taverns, known as heurigens, is perfectly complemented by hearty food, lively music — and locally produced vintages, of course. Heurigens traditionally have rustic decor, open courtyards with outdoor seating, and an accordion player playing traditional Viennese songs. You’ll visit an authentic heurigen for dinner, music, and wine! You can look forward to a fun and festive evening!


DAY 13:

Vienna as you like it, and a private Kursalon concert

You'll have your choice of two tours today: either the city's excellent Museum of Art History or the grand Schönbrunn Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. During free time this afternoon, take a bike for a spin, stop into the lounge for onboard dancing demos, or speak to the concierge about arranging to rent a kayak or boat.

Unforgettable Moment: Later, listen to a lecture on Musical Vienna before enjoying today's highlight: a private classical music concert at the Kursalon.

Biking Opportunity: Enjoy the architecture of Vienna, including panoramic sights of the city’s skyscrapers, during a medium 8-mile route. Click here for details.

Watersport Opportunity: Alternatively, ask your concierge about renting a boat or kayak during your free time.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 14:

Bustling Budapest and the Captain’s Farewell Party

Enjoy a morning at leisure with shuttle service available. This afternoon, sail leisurely towards another great European capital: Budapest. You’ll gather with your fellow travelers tonight for the Captain’s Farewell Party.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 15:

Going for baroque on a city tour of Budapest

Your European river cruise comes to a conclusion in grand style, as you arrive in Budapest. During your tour of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, enjoy the stunning panoramic views across the Danube River from the hilltop terraces of Fisherman’s Bastion. You can also opt to enjoy an optional Hungarian Horse Show today.

Biking Opportunity : Enjoy the most magnificent sites of Budapest, including Freedom Bridge, Chain Bridge and the Hungarian Parliament Building during an easy 5-mile route. Click here for details.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
Optional Tour: Hungarian Horse Show

Hungarian Horse Show

  • Approximate Cost: $65 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4.5 hours
  • Location: Budapest, Hungary
  • When: Half-day tour
Enjoy the romantic scenery of the countryside as you visit the Equestrian Park of the Lázár brothers, who have won several world championships in carriage riding. Hungarian horsemen will welcome and accompany you to the inn’s yard where you will enjoy the famous Hungarian “pálinka” (brandy) before going to the show. The horse show features varied styles of dressage and fun competition with guests. After the show, a carriage awaits you for a scenic ride through the surrounding area.

DAY 16:

Disembark ship and return home (or begin your extension to Bratislava and Prague!)

Transfer to the airport for your return flight home, or begin your optional post-trip extension.

Included Meals:

Breakfast

Post-Trip Extension

Bratislava, Slovakia & Prague, Czech Republic

FROM: $999 PER PERSON | 6 DAYS | $166 PER DAY

Important Notice:The above day-by-day itinerary is preliminary and subject to change. If changes occur while on tour, you will be notified by your Cruise Director or regional expert. In addition, should there be an extreme change in water levels, Vantage will do everything possible to provide either the included excursion or an alternate excursion at Vantage’s discretion.

Please Note: Port Times & Itineraries are subject to change. Fluctuating water levels may affect itinerary.

Contact Vantage

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Majestic Rivers of Europe: Castles, Cathedrals & Fairytales - 2019

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VantageViking River CruisesUniworldVantage Advantage
JourneyMajestic Rivers of Europe: Castles, Cathedrals & FairytalesGrand European TourEuropean Jewels2-for-1 Cruise Prices & 2-for-1 Airfare! The BEST Value in River Cruising.
Cruise-Only Price*15 Days from $2,99915 Days from $3,49916 Days from $6,799The BEST pacing & Greatest value compared to our competitors. *Pricing is based on a May Departure
Triple-Occupancy AvailabilityTravel together with friends & family – add a third guest to your Owner's Suite for $1,199, or a third occupant to your Deluxe Suite for $1,099!Viking does not offer triple accommodations Uniworld does not offer triple accommodations Save thousands with Vantage Triple-Occupancy Accommodations!
Per Diem$199 per day$233 per day$425 per daySave up to $452 per couple per day - that's a total of $7,232 for 15 days.
Ship & StateroomsThe 176-passenger ms River Voyager & ms River Splendor offer all staterooms face outside and feature a glorious view (cabin size ranges from 140-355 sq ft). Why not add to the glamour and romance by staying in our top-of-the-line Suite? More space equals more tranquility and pleasure — room for a separate sitting area, floor-to-ceiling windows with French balcony, and a spacious full bath with shower and tub. Our meticulously designed ships feature enticing public areas and luxurious amenities, including a lounge with full-service bar, well-equipped fitness center, restaurant, Spa, and a Sun Deck where you can relax and take in the ever-changing views.Viking Longships offer you a choice of stateroom category (cabin size ranges from 150-445 sq ft). The recently remodeled, 130-passenger River Duchess has Suites and Staterooms from 151-214 sq ft. Join us and unpack just once! We have the most square footage on lower and bottom cabins, plus the best Suite Life Deal in the cruise business!
Single Travelers8 Single-Occupancy Cabins (125 sq ft) built just for solo travelers–with FREE Single Supplements!100% Single SupplementReduced Single SupplementThe ONLY deluxe tour operator in Europe with specially built single cabins. Solo travelers save up to $5,299 in our single occupancy cabins! 
Included Tours13 Included Tours, plus Cultural Connections12 included tours12 included toursThe Most Included Tours!
Special FeaturesParticipate and learn in culinary & cocktail demonstrations & tastings, including special themed dinners and regional wines, plus, enjoy FREE bikes and maps!The only deluxe river cruise company to offer 2 days in Vienna; exclusive private concert at Kursalon in Vienna, a value of up to $170 per couple; your choice of art and history toursLectures on current affairs in Germany and Holland & the European Union; Learn how to make Rüdesheimer coffee.8 UNESCO sites, your choice of 2-3 tours per day including "like a local" city tour, beer hops farm tour option, and pretzel tastingThe most complimentary bikes, culinary demos, and included features—exclusive to Vantage travelers!We're the only river cruise company to include 2 FULL days in Vienna
Meals41 meals—competitive meal inclusions, plus spa dining41 meals41 mealsExperience Five-Star Dining with special local cultural meals, and new onboard cooking demonstrations and tastings
Discover More4 days Amsterdam from $899; 5 days Prague from $979 3 days Amsterdam from $549; 4 days Prague from $699, $175 per day; 3 days Budapest from $349No extensionsExtend Your Trip and Value, with the lowest extension per-diems!Pre and Post-trip extensions to help you experience more cultures and traditions!
10 Ways to SaveEnjoy traveler referral rewards & SmartPay early-payment savings plan: Save up to $1800 per couple combining maximum SmartPay savings and Past Traveler Discounts (based on a $6,000 trip cost)Past travelers rewards – reserve trip within one year — $200 per person; within two years $100 per person.Travel protection trip insurance, no referral rewardsThe Best Travel Rewards Program in the Market

*Prices are subject to change and based on comparable departure months.
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