Take an amazing journey past ancient castles and soaring cathedrals, taking in great cities including Vienna, Köln, Nürnberg and Bratislava – and revered UNESCO World Heritage Sites like Schönbrunn Palace and Kölner Dom (Cologne Cathedral).
Cruise along banks of the River Danube as the river's breeze pushes you on an amazing journey past grand cathedrals, medieval monasteries, castles and vineyards. Pass through five countries including the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Slovakia, and Hungary, and explore legendary cities such as Amsterdam, Vienna, Köln, Nürnberg, Bratislava and Budapest. Tauck's all-included private shore excursions take you to many UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the historic districts of Budapest, Vienna, and Bamberg, and the Wachau and Rhine valleys. In Vienna, take your choice of visits to Schönbrunn Palace or the Sisi Museum at the Hofburg, and attend a grand Imperial Evening in a traditional palace. In Amsterdam, tour the famed Rijksmuseum. Visit Köln Cathedral, Melk Abbey, medieval towns like Regensburg, Budapest's Heroes' Square and much more!
Tour begins: 5:00 PM, Amsterdam. A transfer is included from Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport or Central Station directly to your riverboat. Enjoy a welcome briefing and a leisurely dinner as you settle into your floating hotel for a memorable two-week-cruise on the Main, Rhine and Danube Rivers.
Amsterdam... the name itself conjures up images of the Dutch capital’s myriad cultural treasures, from gabled houses, markets and cafés to awe-inspiring museums housing a treasure trove of world-famous art – and it’s all yours to enjoy today. Your guided tour of the famed Rijksmuseum is really inspiring – a firsthand look at Rembrandt’s masterpiece The Night Watch is like meeting the artist himself, and you’ll love seeing acclaimed works by other well-known “Old Dutch Masters.” Once an exclusive royal privilege, a private sightseeing cruise by canal boat on the city’s network of concentric, tree-lined 17th-century canals provides a unique view of Amsterdam’s blend of architectural styles – they date all the way back to medieval times – and a unique taste of daily life in this easygoing city. Enjoy dinner back aboard the ship tonight, as we chart a course to Germany.
After a morning of cruising and lunch aboard the riverboat, your explorations continue in Köln (Cologne), the oldest city in Germany. A guided walking tour of city sights includes a visit to twin-spired Kölner Dom (Cologne Cathedral), boasting one of the world’s largest church façades; it is one of Europe’s most beloved Gothic cathedrals. You’ll have some free time to wander through Cathedral Square and the Hohe Strasse pedestrian area in the afternoon. Join us tonight for a reception and a chef's signature dinner followed by an onboard performance by local musicians.
The perfect Rhine cruise... glide along the river until early afternoon, and relax as your Tauck Director shares a tale or two during the cruise through the scenic – and literally legendary – Lorelei Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Arrive in Rüdesheim, where an entertaining lunch in a local German restaurant with an old-world ambiance precedes a visit to Siegfrieds Mechanisches Musikkabinett, an eclectic collection of mechanical musical instruments housed in a 15th-century castle in Rüdesheim, followed by free time; walk back to the ship or ride the mini train. Alternatively, you can choose to join us on a bicycling excursion along the Rhine today. Back aboard the riverboat this evening, enjoy dinner while cruising the Rhine.
Enjoy the views as your Rhine cruise continues into the Main River, for a full day of cruising through scenic valleys studded with castles, cathedrals, and fortified towns. Enjoy a Bavarian-themed dinner aboard the riverboat tonight.
Spend the morning cruising and have lunch aboard the riverboat before arriving in Würzburg. Upon arrival, visit the town's 18th-century Residenz – a lavish Baroque palace where the town's prince bishops once lived, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site – and sample some excellent Franconian wines in the wine cellar (Hoffskeller). Then you'll have two choices of sightseeing. On one, explore Würzburg's Old Town with a local guide; tour more of the Residenz (it was built and decorated by an international team of architects, painters, and sculptors); see the ornate Alte Mainbrücke (a bridge over the River Main); and spend some time on your own. Alternatively, depart on an excursion to the nearby town of Rothenburg; nestled on Germany's "Romantic Road," it lives up to its reputation as Europe's "most perfect fairy-tale town." View its Gothic cathedral, towered walls and gabled houses on a walking tour, and enjoy some time at leisure. Both groups will return to the riverboat for dinner aboard ship.
Your riverboat cruises along the Main to the Bavarian town of Bamberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site situated atop seven hills. You have a choice between discovering the town’s lovely gardens, medieval architecture and 13th-century Gothic cathedral with its four imposing towers on a guided walking tour of Old Town (with time afterwards to explore this charming town on your own); or embarking on a bicycling excursion (due to the terrain, this activity is recommended for fit and experienced cyclists only). Enjoy dinner back aboard the riverboat this evening.
Tauck's Main, Danube and Rhine cruise arrives this morning in historic Nürnberg, where you'll have a choice of a walking tour through Nürnberg’s medieval ramparts to the Imperial Castle and the old city; view the Courthouse, Zeppelinfeld rally grounds, and other sites associated with World War II and its aftermath, and visit the Documentation Center, or, embark on a walking tour of nearby Bayreuth. Your riverboat negotiates the Main-Danube Canal today, which ultimately links the North Sea with the Black Sea – and which you'll learn all about from a local expert during your transit. The idea goes back as far as Charlemagne, but wasn't realized until this canal was completed in the 1990s; pass through 16 locks as the waterway traverses the mountains. Have dinner aboard the riverboat this evening.
With its roots as a Roman encampment on the Danube, the quintessential Bavarian town of Regensburg is home to more than 1,400 original historic buildings. Walking here is a delight and is the only way to view the sights up-close. A local guide will lead the way as you see the town’s 12th-century Steinerne Brücke (Germany’s oldest surviving stone bridge), the 15th-century Altes Rathaus (Town Hall), the towering Dom St. Peter, and the remains of the Roman wall. Visit the princely house of Thurn und Taxis on a guided tour, followed by free time. Enjoy an onboard musical performance by a local quartet before your ship sets off for Passau.
The riverboat docks in the port city of Passau, dating way back to Roman times. Today, you have the choice of a walking tour revealing the Baroque treasures of this lovely riverside town, known for its stained glass and its many churches – including St. Stephan's Cathedral, home to the largest pipe organ outside of the U.S., and the biggest cathedral organ in the world (inside cathedral visit may not be available on all departures); a cycling excursion around Passau, suitable for more experienced riders; or a full-day excursion to the lovely Austrian city of Salzburg, birthplace of W.A. Mozart (and setting of The Sound of Music). Back aboard the riverboat this afternoon and evening, listen to commentary from your Tauck Director as you continue your cruise, bound for Melk, Austria. Tonight, enjoy a musical performance by a classical trio.
Depart Vienna after breakfast, and spend the morning cruising to Slovakia. Arrive early afternoon in Bratislava, capital of Slovakia, where 17 centuries of history are chronicled on a walking tour led by a local guide. Highlights include Baroque palaces from the Habsburg era, St. Martin's Cathedral and more, and a visit to Old Town Hall. This evening, enjoy dinner aboard the riverboat followed by onboard Slovakian entertainment by local performers in the lounge; set off for Budapest tonight.
Tauck's memorable Amsterdam to Budapest river cruise arrives at your final destination – Budapest, Hungary's remarkable capital. Standing on opposite banks of the Danube, Budapest’s two distinct sections – Buda and Pest – were once independent cities. Discover both on a day of sightseeing that includes views of patriotic Heroes’ Square in Pest, dominated by statues of great leaders from Hungarian history; the Gothic-Revival Parliament building, an iconic feature of the Budapest skyline along the Danube; and Fisherman’s Bastion, standing watch like a sentinel over the river. Spend the afternoon exploring on your own. Join us for our farewell reception and dinner tonight onboard ship.
Tour ends: Budapest. Disembark in Budapest; a transfer is included from the riverboat to Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport and Budapest Keleti Railway Station. Allow 3 hours for departure flight check-in.
You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.
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Tauck has been a family run business since its first tour through New England in 1925. Spanning three generations and currently run by six family members, their 90 years of experience is clearly seen in more than 140 unique travel experiences.
Tauck makes dreams come true with inspiring journeys of discovery all over the planet. Wherever you travel with Tauck, their aim is to help you explore the world’s treasures, discover people and cultures you may not have known existed and experience extraordinary, life-changing moments. From North America’s magnificent West to the land of the Incas in South America’s Andes; from Alaska’s glaciers to New Zealand’s fjords; from Europe’s cultural capitals to the wildlife-rich plains of Africa; from Melbourne to Moscow and Bangkok to Bucharest. Choose from land journeys, river cruises, family adventures, small group tours or small ship cruises for your hassle-free adventure with Tauck.
Tauck have built their company on the personal referrals and recommendations of their guests as they can think of no higher testament to their trips and commitment to customer satisfaction. Guests speak of how powerful travel can be and how much they enjoy exploring the world with Tauck, explaining that their special access lets them become part of the culture they are discovering. They appreciate that the trips are seamless and inclusive, with all the details taken care of, so they can relax and enjoy. Travelling well includes getting the best value for your money and Tauck guests feel that it’s not about spending as little as you can, but about what you get for what you spend. A Tauck trip is worth every penny; they say the exclusive experiences provided, the great hotels they stay in, and the exemplary service they receive often far exceeds their expectations.