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The Beautiful Blue Danube Cruise

12 days - from only £1,449pp

ABOUT THE TOUR

The Beautiful Blue Danube Cruise

A majestic cruise through the valleys, vineyards and scenery that make the Danube so special. From the elegance of Vienna, with its many sights from the glorious Hapsburg era, to the ancient splendour of Bratislava and stunning Budapest. Immerse yourself in some of the heartland of Europe’s most magical capitals while enjoying the friendly atmosphere of the MV Esmeralda.

TOUR INCLUDES

  • 7 nights cruising with full board
  • 4 nights hotel with continental breakfast and 2 evening meals
  • Local joining points

12 Day Itinerary

  • Day 1:

    Local departure by coach or Home Connect service to our overnight hotel in Belgium.

  • Day 2: Wurzburg

    Our journey continues south via a visit to Wurzburg. See the historic town bridge and market square, with the backdrop of the hilltop Marienberg Fortress and surrounding vineyards. We continue to our overnight hotel in the Regensburg area. B,D

    Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

    Wurzburg

    Wurzburg

    Included Highlights

    • Wurzburg
  • Day 3: Passau

    We drive to Passau, where we board our cruise ship, the MV Esmeralda for our seven-night cruise. Passau lies at the point where the Danube, Inn and Ilz Rivers meet. B,D

    Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

    Passau

    Passau

    Included Highlights

    • Passau
  • Day 4:

    We cruise eastwards along the Danube past Melk and enjoy the changing scenery as we see Durnstein, a popular winegrowing town. Enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Wachau Valley. Stretching for over 20 miles, the Wachau Valley is found along the Austrian part of the Danube River, cruising between Krems and Melk. This valley is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list, for its architecture, settlements and agricultural land, which show how this medieval landscape has evolved harmoniously over time. We arrive in Vienna this evening.

    Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Danube River

    Danube River

    Included Highlights

    • Danube River
  • Day 5: Vienna

    Join us for an optional guided tour of Vienna, allowing us to discover this splendid city for ourselves. Our coach tour will begin as we travel past Vienna’s large park, the Prater, admiring views of the famous Ferris Wheel and then on to the State Opera House, also seeing the Fine Arts and History Museum. We will also see the stunning Hofburg Palace during our city tour, along with the Parliament building, the Town Hall and the Burg Theatre. Making our way to St. Stephen's Cathedral in the city centre, we will disembark our coach and enjoy a walking tour of Vienna. We will stroll along the Graben, one of Vienna’s most famous streets. We return to the ship and set sail early evening, cruising overnight to Budapest.

    Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Included Highlights

    • Vienna

    Optional Excursions

    Our optional excursions are a great addition to enhance your holiday experience and are highly recommended.

    2022
    • Vienna Guided Sightseeing
    TBC

    The optional excursions will be available to book during your tour.

    Prices are per person and are subject to change. Payment will be in cash in Euros (for tours to Europe) or Sterling (for UK tours).

  • Day 6: Budapest

    We arrive in Budapest. Join us on our included guided tour of this historical city, which is actually two cities astride the Danube. Our excursion 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). </p>We leave early evening and cruise through the night to Bratislava.

    Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Budapest

    Budapest
    More Photos

    Included Highlights

    • Budapest Guided Sightseeing
    • Budapest
  • Day 7: Bratislava

    Join us on our optional guided tour as we discover one of the smallest and most picturesque capitals of Central Europe. See the Slovak Philharmonic Hall, the Slovak National Theatre around the Old Historical Town to the Archbishops Summer Residence. We also see Blumental Church and the bustling commercial street of Obchodna with its many shops, We then head to Bratislava’s imposing Castle and through the garden suburb and onto Vienna Gate and Castle Hill, where we enjoy majestic views of the city before heading to the Old Town. See Archbishop Place, St. Martin Cathedral – the previous Coronation Church of the Hungarian Kings, the Main Square with its Old Town Hall and the Opera House.

    Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Bratislava

    Bratislava
    More Photos

    Included Highlights

    • Bratislava

    Optional Excursions

    Our optional excursions are a great addition to enhance your holiday experience and are highly recommended.

    2022
    • Bratislava Guided Sightseeing
    TBC

    The optional excursions will be available to book during your tour.

    Prices are per person and are subject to change. Payment will be in cash in Euros (for tours to Europe) or Sterling (for UK tours).

  • Day 8: Durnstein

    Relax on board as cruise from Bratislava in the early hours of the morning and travel to Dürnstein. It was here that Richard the Lionheart was held captive, imprisoned in Castle Dürnstein by Leopold V Duke of Austria.

    Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  • Day 9: Melk

    Morning arrival in Melk, famous for its magnificent abbey. 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. There are many other attractions to visit in Melk including the Old Town with its squares and museums. We then travel on to Linz, arriving late this evening.

    Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

    Melk

    Melk

    Included Highlights

    • Melk
  • Day 10:

    We disembark the ship in Linz and head into Germany to our overnight hotel in the Frankfurt/Mainz area.

    Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

  • Day 11: Rhine Valley

    We head through the Rhine Valley, where we make a stop in Boppard, the ‘pearl of the Rhine’. We continue to the Moselle, where we visit one of the famous vintners and enjoy an optional wine tasting. Continue to Belgium for an overnight stay.

    Included meals: Breakfast

    Included Highlights

    • Rhine Valley

    Optional Excursions

    Our optional excursions are a great addition to enhance your holiday experience and are highly recommended.

    2022
    • Wine tasting
    TBC

    The optional excursions will be available to book during your tour.

    Prices are per person and are subject to change. Payment will be in cash in Euros (for tours to Europe) or Sterling (for UK tours).

  • Day 12:

    Return home.

    Included meals: Breakfast

Hotels

Spend seven nights cruising the Danube on board the popular 3-star MV Esmeralda. Discover wonderful landscapes during our cruise on this majestic river, and relax on-board, making the most of the Esmeralda’s excellent facilities. With her comfortable lounge areas and attractive decor, the MV Esmeralda is sure to be the perfect home from home. Enjoy delicious meals on-board the MV Esmeralda, including buffet breakfasts, three-course lunches and four-course evening meals, as well as exciting gala dinners! When the weather’s nice, you should absolutely spend some time on the sun deck, where you’ll find sun loungers and a shaded area from which you can admire the ever-changing scenery. You can also make your way to the lounge, with its comfortable leather couches and plush chairs. You’re sure to make lots of new friends and chat with your new companions over a drink or two at the bar.

Overnight stays in Belgium and Germany will be in city-style hotels.

  • Mv Esmeralda

    The MV Esmeralda is the perfect ship to enjoy a cruise along the Danube, with a high level of comfort and excellent facilities available on board. Cabin accommodation is on two decks: main and promenade. There is a lounge with bar, restaurant and sun deck, and all of the cosy, functional twin-bedded cabins have picture windows, shower and toilet, colour TV and safety deposit box. The Esmeralda has a lift between the main deck and the promenade deck, and a stair lift between the promenade deck and the sun deck. Cabins - All of the functional, cosy cabins have picture windows, shower and toilet, TV, safety deposit box and twin beds. Lounge/Bar - The Esmeralda has an inviting lounge where morning coffee and afternoon tea is offered each day. Restaurant - Enjoy the Esmeralda’s tasty cuisine in the ship’s comfortable restaurant.

    • English Speaking Staff
    • Guest Lounge
    • Bar
    • Restaurant
    • Lift
    • TV
    • Bath and/or Shower
    • Telephone

Joining points

Travel from most joining points is included within your coach holiday price; some carry a supplement of £20pp. To find your nearest joining point, search using your postcode below.

See our full list of our joining points.

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