UPDATE: Beginning with 3/26/22 departures, vaccinations against COVID-19 – including a Booster shot – are NOW required for all travelers and Vantage associates (ship crew, Expedition Team, Cruise Directors, Program Managers, etc.). For additional information, click here or visit our Safe Travels Initiative page.

Passage to Eastern Europe featuring Transylvania - 2023

9-night river cruise with Budapest, Kalocsa, Mohacs, Vukovar, Belgrade, Donji Milanovac, Iron Gates, Ruse • Bucharest
  • REVEL IN FASCINATING FOLKLORIC TRADITION AND STORYBOOK SCENERY AS YOU CRUISE THE DANUBE THROUGH FIVE COUNTRIES
  • CITY TOUR OF BUDAPEST (A UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE) FEATURING FISHERMAN’S BASTION
  • The quaint and colorful village of Veliko Turnovo with the river running through.
    SPEND A FULL DAY IN CHARMING 12TH-CENTURY VELIKO TARNOVO, WHERE YOU'LL LUNCH WITH LOCAL STUDENTS
  • SAIL THROUGH THE IRON GATES, ONE OF THE MOST DRAMATIC AND BEAUTIFUL STRETCHES ALONG THE DANUBE
  • ROUND OUT THIS REMARKABLE JOURNEY WITH AN EXTENSION TO TRANSYLVANIA, ROMANIA
DATES & PRICES
STARTING FROM
$4,999
  • $416
    PER DAY
  • 12
    DAYS
  • 29
    TOURS
TRIP WITH AIR
13 DAYS FROM $5,848
Luxury
Extend Your journey (4 available)
Warsaw & Krakow (Pre-Trip)

6 DAYS FROM $1,399

Transylvania, Romania (Pre-Trip)

4 DAYS FROM $999

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2-FOR-1 AIRFARE
Save up to $2,099 per couple with 2-for-1 international airfare on select departures!
LEADER IN SOLO TRAVEL
FREE Single Supplements on select cabins — savings of up to $6,899!
★ NOW SAVE 10% ★
For a limited time, reserve now and save up to 10% with SmartPay℠!
 
360° Tour Videos

Splendor Cabaret Lounge

Splendor Captain's Club

Splendor Compass Rose Restaurant

Splendor Fitness Room

Splendor Front Terrace

Splendor Large Deluxe Suite: Colombus Suite

Splendor Library

Splendor Lisa Minnelli Owner's Suite

Splendor Lobby and Reception Area

Splendor Massage Studio

Splendor Stateroom with Outside View

ms River Splendor

Splendor Stateroom with Outside View

Splendor Stateroom with French Balcony

Splendor Sun Deck

Passage to Eastern Europe featuring Transylvania

Cruise along the southern reaches of the Danube into the heart of the Old World, a land of sophisticated art and culture, medieval wonders, rich folk traditions, fairy-tale villages, bountiful comfort food, and so much more. Your itinerary takes you between elegant Budapest and fascinating Bucharest, visiting five different countries: Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, and Romania.

City Tour of Budapest

Enjoy a city tour of Budapest (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) featuring Fisherman’s Bastion.

Hungarian Folklore Workshop

Take part in an insightful Folklore Workshop featuring paprika bread making, folk painting and embroidery.

Home-hosted lunch in Osijek, Croatia

You'll enjoy several Cultural Connections on your river cruise that provide opportunities to explore local traditions and meet local people. One of these is such as a home-hosted lunch in Osijek, Croatia.

Belgrade, Serbia

During Vantage's Passage to Eastern Europe river cruise from Budapest to Bucharest, you'll discover the country’s 2,500-year-old capital, Belgrade, on a half-day tour. Belgrade’s recent history has left the city somewhat disheveled — yet you’ll be impressed by bold redevelopment and the positive outlook of the residents. You’ll also visit Kalemegdan Fortress.

The Iron Gates of the Danube River

During your Vantage River Cruise, relax on deck and enjoy the views as you travel through Serbia and Romania on one of the most dramatic and beautiful stretches of the Danube river, the series of gorges known as the Iron Gates of the Danube.

Children’s Serbian Folk Dance

During your Vantage river cruise through Eastern Europe, you'll enjoy a charming dance performance by Serbian children in Donji Milanovac.

Biking Opportunities

On board our ships, complimentary bicycles are available for your use so you can pedal along the scenic paths that wind along the river, or cycle around town, during your free time.

Optional Extension to Transylvania, Romania

Even without the lure of vampire legends, Romania's central region of Transylvania is a superb travel destination, with its rugged mountain scenery, medieval villages, and well-preserved towns. Now you can experience it firsthand — at a great Vantage value! — as an extension of your European river cruise. Most intriguing of all, you'll uncover the mystery of Dracula himself!

Optional Extension to Warsaw & Krakow

Experience the resurgence of Warsaw and Krakow on this historical foray into the heart of Poland. You’ll spend two days in Warsaw, the elegant capital meticulously restored after the destruction during World War II, before transferring to one of Europe’s most indisputably beautiful cities — Krakow. Enjoy informative walking tours of each city’s atmospheric and historic districts and visit the Warsaw Ghetto and the Auschwitz-Birkenau camps to explore some of the darkest chapters in world history. Three UNESCO World Heritage Sites round out this extension — don't miss it!

George Bihoi, Cruise Director, Passage to Eastern Europe

Vantage travelers often compliment George Bihoi’s “wonderful bedside manner,” which is no surprise, since he has a Master’s degree in Health Care and Human Resources. His other credentials include certification as a national guide with the Romanian Ministry of Tourism, and as an official translator with the Romanian Ministry of Justice (the highest certification available in the field.) But perhaps his best qualification to lead you on a Main, Rhine, and Danube river cruise is his deep appreciation for the opportunity to discover new worlds. He credits his mother with that, since she was an English teacher who made sure her son knew what was behind the Iron Curtain long before it fell. Says George, “By 1989 when the revolution came, I was ready to open up to the newly discovered democracy. It’s been 12 years for me leading tours and I can safely say that each time I go back to a place, I find something new and exciting worth sharing with our visitors.” Among his favorite places to share are the Iron Gates and Transylvania, especially in fall and spring. A true man for all seasons, George still helps out in the emergency room of a Bucharest hospital when not on tour.

Bogdan Curea, Cruise Director, Passage to Eastern Europe

As a child growing up in Bucharest, Bogy loved to tag along when his bus driver father drove travelers on tours all over Romania. “It was love at first sight, traveling and discovering new places and people.” Bogy went on to study history and finance, earning an MBA and working for international hotel chains such as Hilton and Crowne Plaza. Now he is back doing what he loves best, “Getting to know different people, sharing my knowledge, treating everybody as I wish to be treated when I am on holiday.” One of his favorite holiday destinations is Transylvania, with its “gorgeous nature and unspoiled lands, the medieval castles, UNESCO sites, and the special atmosphere.”

The ms River Splendor

Unpack just once, relax, and discover the most luxurious and rewarding way to see Europe. The Deluxe ship, the ms River Splendor, has been designed specifically for the discerning traveler, with spacious staterooms, a state-of-the-art infotainment system, gourmet international dining, themed lounges, complimentary Concierge service, and a crew-to-passenger ratio of better than 1:4.

Owner's Suite on the ms River Splendor

The 330 square-foot Owner's Suite has all the features of a Deluxe Suite, including floor to ceiling windows with remote control curtains; private airport transfers upon arrival and departure from your destination when you purchase Vantage air, laundry service, and more.

Deluxe Suites on the ms River Splendor

Make the most of your journey by upgrading to a 250-square-foot Deluxe Suite at a surprisingly reasonable price. Your Deluxe Suite includes all of the amenities of Deluxe Staterooms, plus a minibar, luxurious bathrobes and slippers, a bathroom with a shower and bathtub, and more.

Deluxe Staterooms on the ms River Splendor

Join us and unpack just once in your private stateroom. All staterooms face outside and feature a glorious view. Deluxe staterooms on the Navigator deck have French balconies, which offer the best of all worlds: grand, panoramic views and the ability to open your room to fresh river breezes — without reducing valuable interior space, the way a traditional balcony does.

Single Staterooms on the ms River Splendor

If you're traveling solo, you'll also have the choice of reserving a single cabin so you don't have to pay based on double-room rates. (Availability is limited, so reserve promptly if interested.)

Health & Wellness During Your European River Cruise

Our tours are designed to help you get out and explore, no matter your activity level. Ideally paced and full of options, our trips put you in control, whether you want to “do it all” or unplug and do nothing. Join a walking tour to the next village, or cycle alongside a Dutch canal with one of the complimentary bikes we offer on board. Plus, you’ll have ample free time to experience the world in your own unique fashion.

Solo Travel with Vantage

You can count on the best value in the industry when you travel solo with Vantage, beginning with one free Single Supplement on each departure of most Small Ship Cruises and Escorted Land Tours. We also offer among the lowest Single Supplements available. And you’ll enjoy single-occupancy staterooms on our fleet of deluxe river ships.

Vantage's Referral Program

Do you have friends who love to travel as much as you do? Why not be rewarded for sharing your love of travel? That's the philosophy behind Vantage's newly enhanced Referral Program, where you can earn up to $8,200 in your choice of cash and free travel rewards for every eight friends you refer!

Vantage Deluxe Travel Air Upgrades

Upgrade your flight category to First Class, Business Class, or Premium Economy, and you’ll start your trip off right. That’s because you’ll arrive refreshed, unfrazzled, and ready to go. Even better, you’ll be able to take advantage of our contract prices, meaning big savings and no service fees.

Travel Protection Plan

When you’re ready to travel to the places you love, there’s a way to plan with more peace of mind. From medical emergencies to travel delays and beyond, the Travel Protection Plan gives you the added security to discover the world without worrying about the unexpected.

SmartPay Discount Plan

Optional pre-trip extensions. Exclusive optional tours. Upgraded business class seats. These things can be yours — virtually for free — when you use SmartPay to pay for your trip in advance. That’s because you can save an average of up to $600 per person — a full 10% — when you reserve your trip and pay in full 12 months or more prior to your journey!

Group Program - Travel for FREE

Earn a FREE trip with every 10 paying travelers you bring with you!

Vantage Deluxe Worldwide River Cruising

In Europe, civilization developed along the rivers, so there's no better route along which to explore. Voyages aboard our own private and privately chartered fleet span the entire continent. Our tantalizing array of itineraries reveals storybook castles, half-timbered villages, medieval town squares, and dramatic landscapes of rolling vineyards and lofty mountains. And because your river ship is your home throughout your voyage, you'll unpack just once and feel comfortable in no time.

The World of Vantage

Discover the world with Vantage Deluxe World Travel — at the best values available today — for worldwide river cruises, small ship discoveries, and escorted land tours for small groups

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