Full board basis starts after embarkation and first evening meal onboard your ship. Other meals may be included depending on travel type. Please see daily itinerary descriptions for included meals on each day.
Uncover the strong musical heritage of the Danube River on our enthralling cruise. Visit the beautiful Schonbrunn Palace, where a young Mozart discovered his great talent and delve into the spirit of the ‘Sound of Music’ on a guided city tour of Salzburg.
Join us on our excursion of this historical city, which is actually two cities astride the Danube. Our guided tour of Budapest takes us by coach on a visit to both.
On the Pest side we see St Stephen’s Basilica, Vajdahunyad Castle and Heroes’ Square, which is dominated by the impressive Millenary Monument, home to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
We then cross to Buda and the Castle District, where we find the seven-hundred year-old Matthias Church, one of the jewels of Budapest. We also see the famous Fisherman’s Bastion, which offers great views over the city.
The city is home to the largest medicinal bath in Europe (Szechenyi Medicinal Bath) and the third largest Parliament building in the world, once the largest in the world. The city also contains the third largest church in Europe (Esztergom Basilica) and the second largest Baroque castle in the world (Godollo).
One of the most magnificent cities in the world, Budapest is filled with incredible sights and sounds. Join us as we take a city tour to learn more about this wonderful capital of Hungary, with its stunning architecture, historical attractions and marvellous culture.
Admire sights such as the Hungarian Parliament building and Liberty Square, with its mixture of art nouveau and historicist architecture. There’s also the House of Terror Museum, the beautiful St Stephen's Basilica and the neo-Gothic Fisherman's Bastion.
Stift Melk (Melk Abbey) is a Baroque-era masterpiece, located above the town of Melk on a rocky outcrop overlooking the river Danube. Part palace, part monastery and part opera set, Melk is a magnificent vision thanks greatly to its upward-reaching twin towers. Capped with baroque helmets and cradling a 208-foot-high dome, this abbey is a true Baroque masterpiece.
Our tour of the abbey includes the Imperial rooms, Marble Hall, and the balcony, which offers fine views of the river. It’s likely that Napoleon probably used this room as a lookout when his headquarters were based in Melk for his campaign against Austria.
We also see the magnificent library, with more than 100,000 books, nearly 2,000 manuscripts, and a superb ceiling fresco by the master Paul Troger; the Marmorsaal, whose windows on both sides enhance the ceiling frescoes; and the glorious Stiftskirche (abbey church) of Saints Peter and Paul, an exquisite example of the Baroque style.
Following the tour you can enjoy some free time to wander around the abbey’s park with its impressive Baroque garden, the recently restored northern bastion. Or you may just wish to sit and relax in the abbey’s restaurant with a coffee and admire the beautiful views.
Join a tour of the Wachau Valley, a beautiful wine-growing region. Passing vineyards, apricot groves and almond trees we travel to the beautiful town of Durnstein. The town is known for the stunning castle that overlooks it, standing here for almost 1000 years, it once held Richard the Lionheart as a prisoner following the Third Crusade.
Vienna is undoubtedly Europe’s musical capital, and this excursion will give us the opportunity to enjoy the music of two of Austria’s favourite sons. Sit back and relax as we listen to the music of Johann Strauss, the Waltz King, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the infant prodigy.
We make the short journey by coach to the concert hall for an evening full of Viennese charm, with the lilting sound of waltzes, polkas, arias and duets, as well as operetta and piano concerto melodies. Accompanied by excellent opera vocalists and our enchanting ballet soloists, Vienna's classical music reveals itself as a living firework display for all the senses taking us back to the days of old Vienna for a truly unforgettable evening.
The Danube north of Budapest is known for superb scenery and ancient towns. Our first stop will be at Visegrad which is known for its castles and forts which have guarded this part of the river from invaders since ancient times. We move onto Szentendre, a small town known for old houses and beautiful churches. For more than a century it has attracted Hungary's most famous artists and there are a number of galleries and exhibits that demonstrate this artistic heritage. Slightly off this track, there's the marzipan museum which includes a scale replica of the Hungarian Parliament building.
The UFO Bridge is perhaps the most famous symbol of the city of Bratislava. On this excursion we’ll take in the view of this breathtaking city. From the top you get fantastic views of the city’s castle which sits high on a hill, its pristine whitewashed walls standing out like a beacon for the rest of the city. There are also great views of the old town and St Martin’s Cathedral, just across the river, as well as views of the snaking Danube winding its way into the distance towards Austria. Looking back the other way you see an altogether different, but still fascinating view of the Communist-era concrete blocks of Petrzalka, which was the largest block housing complex in Central Europe.
Discover the places made famous by the Sound of Music with us today. These include Mirabell Gardens and the Pegasus Fountains, the family home at Schloss Leopoldskron, Hellbrun Palace and Mondsee Basilica.
We visit the summer palace of the Habsburg Dysnasty in the centre of Austria’s capital, Vienna. Schonbrunn Palace contains over 300 years of history as well as beautiful Baroque architecture and vast, lavish gardens. We’ll take the Imperial tour, which gives us a picture of the different stylish eras that have shaped the palace and the lives and history of the people who lived here. Our tour includes a visit to the State Rooms at the palace, designed to the tastes of Franz Josef I and his wife Elisabeth, who ruled Austria-Hungary during the latter 19th century and the early 20th century. At the time the couple was one of the most powerful and important in Europe.
You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.
With over 114 years experience, Shearings is the largest escorted tour operator with over 800 pick-up points across the UK. They offer 170 destinations to suit diverse tastes and budgets.
What differentiates Shearings is the scope and diversity of their holidays, which cater to diverse tastes and budgets. They offer an unrivalled range of expertly planned itineraries throughout the year, with everything from 2-day weekend breaks to 17-day escorted tours.
Their knowledgeable and friendly teams look after every aspect of your journey from start to finish. The drivers, tour managers and hotel staff are always on-hand to take care of you and ensure you get the very best from your holiday.
Shearings offer a superb selection of amazing holidays by air and rail, as well as an extraordinary range of beautiful river cruises, sailing along some of Europe’s most enchanting waterways. You will find an assortment of inspiring itineraries to choose from, including Festival & Events breaks, Horticultural & Garden tours, BattlefieldsTours, and premium Grand Tourer holidays.
Shearings also caters for the single travellers, with its award-winning Your Time breaks, designed exclusively with the independent traveller in mind.
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