Budapest to the Black Sea - Eastbound

Become a TourHound member today to access personalised recommendations and bucket lists to help plan your trips. You’ll also receive rebates on selected tours. It’s free to become a member, sign up here.
  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • What's Included
  • Reviews
  • Dates
  • Tauck

Explore the romantic lower Danube through the heart of Central Europe, where East and West meet and intertwine in fascinating cultures and turbulent history... Glide past medieval monasteries, citadels and villages... Discover resort towns along Romania’s Black Sea Coast, explore an ancient Christian necropolis in Pecs, and visit "Dracula’s" castle in Transylvania... dine in the Soviet-style People’s Palace in Bucharest... Share homemade refreshments in the home of a Croatian family rebuilding their lives in postwar Vukovar, and listen to Béla Bartók’s piano music at a recital in his Budapest home. Experience authentic local cuisine, music and dance, and a wealth of architectural wonders as your river cruise winds its way through Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania, with nights on land at luxury hotels in the popular cities of Bucharest and Budapest (the Paris of Eastern Europe).

Highlights
  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Exclusive evening at Belgrade's Royal White Palace
  • Tauck’s private shore excursions and distinctive inclusions valued at £1,774
  • Two nights at a hotel in Budapest and two nights in Bucharest at a hotel with an ideal location next to the Parliament Palace
  • All gratuities to ship staff, drivers, local guides, Tauck Directors and Tauck Cruise Director
  • Choices of bicycle excursions in Budapest & Belgrade
  • Dinner at the massive Parliament building (the "People's Palace") in Bucharest 
Destinations
  • Budapest
  • Hungary
  • Europe
Tour Types
  • River Cruise
  • Cruise
  • Luxury
  • Cultural

Location: Budapest, Hungary

<strong>Tour begins: 6:00 PM, The Ritz-Carlton, Budapest.</strong> A transfer is included from&nbsp;Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport&nbsp;and Budapest-Keleti Station to The Ritz-Carlton, Budapest in the heart of the city. Meet your fellow travelers and Tauck Directors at the welcome cocktail reception and dinner at the Festetics Palace in Budapest.&nbsp;

Meals: Dinner

Location: Budapest, Hungary

Once independent cities located on opposite sides of the Danube, Buda and Pest joined together when they were linked by the Chain Bridge in the mid-19th century to become Hungary&rsquo;s cosmopolitan capital, Budapest. You have a choice of Budapest discoveries this morning. You can choose to join Tauck&rsquo;s local guides for sightseeing in Pest starting with a visit to St. Stephen&rsquo;s Basilica, Budapest&rsquo;s neo-Renaissance cathedral completed in 1905; continuing with Pest&rsquo;s impressive mix of architectural masterpieces and historic monuments, viewing City Park, patriotic Heroes&rsquo; Square with its statues of Hungarian leaders through the ages, the Gothic-Revival Parliament building and tree-lined Andrassy Avenue; and time spent wandering through bustling Central Market Hall, a veritable showcase of Hungarian life from food to gifts and caf&eacute;s. Or you can choose to spend the morning touring the Pest side of the city by bicycle with a local guide (you'll need to be comfortable riding a bicycle in a city environment). The rest of the day and evening are yours to enjoy the city as you like.

Meals: Breakfast

Location: Budapest, Hungary

Today's exploration of Buda begins with a visit the Hungarian Parliament building, rich with history; it is nothing short of an architectural masterpiece. Next, travel to Castle Hill, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where a guided walking tour introduces architectural landmarks such as well-known Fisherman's Bastion. Go back to the days of World War II and the Cold War at the Sziklak&oacute;rh&aacute;z ("Hospital in the Rock"), a museum recreating underground military medical and civil defense facilities in a former secret nuclear bunker hidden beneath Buda Castle. Enjoy some time to explore more of Budapest as you please, then board your riverboat to&nbsp;begin your cruise. Join us tonight for a welcome toast followed by dinner onboard.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Location: Pecs, Hungary

Arrive in Mohacs this morning and travel to P&eacute;cs for a walking tour. Here you&rsquo;ll also explore the fascinating Christian Necropolis, a complex dating back to the 4th century that includes underground burial chambers and chapels adorned with early Christian art and frescoes, a UNESCO World Heritage site. In the 19th century, P&eacute;cs was famous worldwide for the exquisite Zsolnay porcelain manufactured here, and your visit includes a stop at the Zsolnay Museum for a look at its stunning examples of Art Nouveau stoneware, tiles and pottery. Visit a winery in Vill&aacute;ny for lunch (this region is renowned for its red wines) then return to Mohacs for dinner aboard ship.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Your&nbsp;riverboat exploration of the&nbsp;lower Danube cruises into Croatia; an onboard lecture by a local expert&nbsp;provides insights into&nbsp;the country's culture and history. Dock in the Baroque city of Vukovar, once showcasing opulent 18th-century mansions, but now poignantly symbolizing the effects of the 1990s war as it rebuilds; visit the home of a Vukovar family who have recently returned to resume their lives in the city after the conflict, who will share homemade refreshments with you. Reboard your riverboat for lunch and cruise to Novi Sad, Serbia, enhanced by commentary by your Tauck Directors. You'll have a little free time this evening to explore Novi Sad before your cruise continues to Belgrade.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Location: Belgrade, Serbia

Dock in Belgrade, Serbia&rsquo;s eclectic, cosmopolitan capital at the juncture of the Danube and Sava rivers. You can choose to spend the morning touring the "New Belgrade" section of the city by bicycle with a local guide (you'll need to be comfortable riding a bicycle in a city environment); or join our local guides for a city tour that includes visits to Tito&rsquo;s Memorial and the formidable Kalemegdan Fortress, and views of busy Slavija Square (now one of the city&rsquo;s major squares, but once a large pool where residents hunted wild ducks!), Parliament, Republic Square and City Hall. After lunch onboard your ship (or own your own in town), you have the afternoon free to spend as you please. Following onboard entertainment by Serbian performers during cocktail hour, you'll return to shore for this evening's sparkling Tauck Exclusive &ndash; dinner at the Royal White Palace of the Serbian Royal Family in Belgrade, built in the 1930s for members of the Yugoslavian royal family and set within the same complex as the Royal Palace of Dedinje, today home to HRH Crown Prince Alexander II of Serbia and his family.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Continuing your Budapest river cruise, relax on a day's sail past the fields and vineyards of Eastern Europe. Pass into Romania and through the Kazan Narrows and the Iron Gate of the Danube, a two-mile-long series of narrow gorges between the Carpathian and Balkan mountain ranges. As you glide along the Bulgarian /&nbsp;Serbian border, look for the massive monument to the 2nd-century Dacian King Decebalus &ndash; Europe's tallest rock sculpture, completed in 2004, carved into the riverbank on the Romanian side &ndash; as well as spectacular views of the Transylvanian Alps. Join us tonight for the Chef's signature dinner.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Location: Ruse, Bulgaria

Your Budapest river cruise along the Danube takes you to Bulgaria today; largely off limits during four centuries of Ottoman rule and decades behind the Iron Curtain, the country's rich natural beauty and history is yours to discover for yourself. Disembark after lunch in Ruse &ndash; often referred to as &ldquo;Little Vienna&rdquo; for its Art Nouveau homes, Austro-Hungarian architecture and lively caf&eacute;s &ndash; for a choice of afternoon sightseeing. You may join us for a guided walking tour of Ruse, or a&nbsp;beautiful (but challenging)&nbsp;hike to the celebrated Rock Churches in the village of Ivanovo, whose stony chambers carved into steep, cliffside caves reveal stunning medieval frescoes inside; a visit is richly rewarding. Back aboard your ship tonight, a classical Bulgarian music performance precedes dinner.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

<p class="p1">Spend the morning cruising the Danube all the way to Constanta, Romania on the Black Sea coast. Upon your arrival in the early afternoon, take a guided tour of this historic port city, originally the ancient Greek colony of Tomis and home to numerous Greek and Roman antiquities; sights include an Art-Nouveau casino and a monument to the Roman poet Ovid, who was exiled here by the Emperor Augustus. Then it&rsquo;s on to Mamaia, the largest seaside resort on the Black Sea, for some time at leisure to enjoy the beach before returning to the riverboat, docked in Constanta, for your final night aboard your Budapest river cruise. Join us for the ship's farewell reception and dinner onboard this evening.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Location: Bucharest, Romania

Disembark your riverboat in Constanta and travel to Bucharest, capital of Romania and once regarded as the "Paris of the Balkans." A sightseeing tour of city landmarks includes Revolution Square and the Triumphal Arch; erected to commemorate Romania&rsquo;s reunification and those who fell in World War I, it is a smaller but otherwise exact copy of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. Lunch in the Old Town, the city&rsquo;s charming historic center; a former enclave of artisans and merchants in the 16th century, it&rsquo;s now a trendy district of old inns, antique shops, galleries, and cafes, riddled with winding networks of vaulted cellars, cobblestone streets and passageways. Settle in for the next two nights at the JW Marriott Bucharest Grand Hotel in the heart of the city; if you wish, have dinner at the hotel tonight, or choose to enjoy a lunch or dinner at the hotel at another time during your stay.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Location: Bucharest, Romania

A choice of sightseeing today echoes the legacy of 15th-century Romanian prince Vlad Tepes (a.k.a. "Vlad the Impaler"), thought to be the historical model for Bram Stoker&rsquo;s <em>Dracula.</em> You may choose to take a full-day excursion to Transylvania&rsquo;s 14th-century Bran Castle, which Tepes once used as a fortress during his military campaigns; the excursion includes a brief walk and lunch in Brasov. Or you can opt for a trip to Targoviste to see the ruins of Tepes' palace, including its imposing watchtower, restored in the 19th century; you'll also visit the army barracks (now a museum) where Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu was tried and executed in 1989. Return to Bucharest for free time and dinner as you please.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Location: Bucharest, Romania

Discover more of Romania's capital on a morning sightseeing tour, ending in Bucharest's Old Town. Following an afternoon spent pursuing what interests you most in the city, join us this evening as we travel to a Tauck Exclusive at the massive Palace of Parliament (a.k.a. the People&rsquo;s Palace), built by dictator Nicolae Ceaucescu to be the center of political power in the capital; the Soviet-style white marble complex, 12 stories high, with over a thousand rooms and four underground levels, is the world&rsquo;s largest building after the Pentagon, and some parts of it are still unfinished! An introductory tour concludes with a special farewell reception and dinner at the ubiquitous palace, complete with musical entertainment.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Location: Bucharest, Romania

<strong>Tour ends: Bucharest. </strong>Fly home anytime. A transfer is included from the JW Marriott Bucharest Grand Hotel to Bucharest Henri Coanda International Airport and Bucuresti Gara de Nord; please allow 3 hours for flight check-in at the airport.

Meals: Breakfast

  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Exclusive evening at Belgrade's Royal White Palace
  • All gratuities to ship staff, drivers, local guides, Tauck Directors and Tauck Cruise Director
  • Tauck’s private shore excursions and distinctive inclusions valued at £1,774
  • Two nights at a hotel in Budapest and two nights in Bucharest at a hotel with an ideal location next to the Parliament Palace
  • Choices of bicycle excursions in Budapest & Belgrade
  • Dinner at the massive Parliament building (the "People's Palace") in Bucharest 
5* Tauck is first class!
Although the area has a very sad history, Tauck showed us the best of what Eastern Europe had to offer. From dinners in palaces to tours in iconic buildings to meeting the best people in the world. We had a blast thanks to the staff and fellow guests. Besides the beautiful sites, the staff on the MS Joy was the most memorable.
Added By:
Date: 01-Aug-2018

3* Nothing Special
Boat ride was ok, wifi was heavily filtered blocking many sites. Most people opted to use internet off the ship. Food was boring. Many people complained but nothing was done to rectify the situation. I strongly recommend that Tauck terminate their contract with the boat company if the food and wifi situation is not improved. Getting off the boat to eat and being able to get on the internet. The sight seeing was ok. Off the boat we had great rooms and laundry service like we had on Crystal.
Added By:
Date: 24-Sep-2018

5* Budapest to the Black sea 2018
We had a great time. The Tauck Directors and Cruise Director really went out of their way to make this cruise wonderful. They even remembered Cathye's birthday! The whole crew did a wonderful job esp the chefs and the kitchen crew. The local excursions and local tour guides did a wonderful job on each detail. wished more time at the market Seeing the great carving of King Decebalus carved in stone and the wonderful steak dinner provided by the exec chef.
Added By:
Date: 17-Sep-2018

4* Perfect trip before Croatian Tour
The utter horror of the first night in Budapest, standing alone while two Directors laughed and joked with other guests, couples. I just had to stand by the wall alone. Just before dinner an American asked me where I came from. Australia. Oh I love Australia, I’ll adopt you tonight!! The two Directors knew I was a solo Aussie when I first met them. The history of all countries and friendly Americans I met!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! A really informative trip and perfect lead in to my Croatia trip. Was thinking of A & K at this stage for future travels, name down for Israel, but one of the Tauck Directors saved Tauck’s reputation. Thoroughly recommend for doing prior to Croatian tour, perfect match.
Added By:
Date: 18-Jun-2018

4* First river cruise!
Our Budapest to the Black Sea trip on the MS JOY was - a joy! Our cabin was wonderful, the meals were excellent and the service superb. Much of this section of the Danube, however, is not particularly scenic and the sights, other than in Budapest and Bucharest, are limited. We enjoyed the trip, but prefer Tauck's land tours (we've taken eight). Visiting the memorial of the shoes along the Danube in Budapest and wandering, after hours on our private visit, through Bucharest's Palace of the Parliament.
Added By:
Date: 09-Jul-2018

5* The Black Sea
We started in Budapest and traveled on the MS Joy down the Danube through Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania stoping at cities along the way to visit with the local people. Learning about the revolution that took place in these areas during the late 1980's and '90's after the death of Tito and the fall of Yugoslavia. Also, making new friends with the people on board and spending time with our good friends from Texas that were with us on the trip.
Added By:
Date: 31-Jul-2018

5* Our First Tauck River Cruise.
When you are in confined spaces for a 7 day cruise the most important thing on a cruise like this is "the people". By that I mean, MV Joy was a very impressive ship - very well maintained - it looked new but the most important aspect to life on board was the quality and friendliness of the tour team and the ship team. They were exceptional. We were walking on our way to the very Impressive Parliament buildings on the side of the Danube when our guide asked us to stop at the "shoes" right next to the river. She explained what these bronze mens, womens and childrens shoes represented - she explained what happened to these Jewish families in Budapest in 1944. We were not prepared !
Added By:
Date: 30-Jul-2018

4* Budapest to the Black Sea
First experience on a river cruise. Had a wonderful time, but not enough to do. I believe I prefer a large cruise ship. Everything! The food on the ship was the best! Service great, and the entire staff very accommodating.
Added By:
Date: 03-Sep-2018

4* Eastern Europe - so much to learn!
This trip was wonderful....so much history that we are not taught about the Serbians, Croats, Bulgarians, Romanians and Hungarians. Tauck does a great job of explaining where you are and what is significant about this country. You learn so much, almost historical overload. Beautiful ship and fabulous crew...so attentive and great directors. Evening in Budapest with a lovely dinner and fabulous Hungarian music! My Favorite music as I am from Hungarian descent.
Added By:
Date: 30-Jul-2018

4* Very Satisfying River Cruise Through Lands Steeped in History and Culture
This was a very interesting trip from many perspectives. The itinerary was fascinating, the ship was beautiful, the food was excellent and the service was unmatched. With respect to the itinerary, we especially liked the amount of time we had in Budapest--so much to see and do there. All the guides were terrific. Needed some fans in the Palaces. We really enjoyed the visit to the home in Croatia. The host was most hospitable and welcoming and her stories of experience during the war with Serbia were very moving.
Added By:
Date: 03-Aug-2018

You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.

Dates Price Single Availability
10-Aug-2021
12 Nights
MS JOY View live deal View live deal
24-Aug-2021
12 Nights
MS JOY View live deal View live deal

Touring with Tauck

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.

{{shortLabel}}

tour details

This tour is operated by Tauck

12 nights from pp exc.flights; per Night
compare Compare tour Add this tour to the comparison list. compare Compare tour This tour has been added to the comparison list. Cick here to view.
View live deal View live deal Book between now and the 31st December for travel in 2020 & receive an additional hotel night free pre or post tour!
Start: Budapest, Hungary
Finish: Bucharest, Romania
Suitable for: 0-99
tourhound promise
tourhound promise
TourHound Promise
  • I compare from the largest selection of touring companies available.
  • It doesn’t cost you a penny to use me, or to book a tour through TourHound.
  • I never favour one operator over another and provide a totally neutral comparison.
View live deal View live deal View live deal View live deal
tour hound
Why TourHound?