Join CTD President Steve Uelner for what promises to be a holiday trip of a lifetime! Visit the best Christmas Markets along the Danube and explore delightful river towns on this winter fairytale. Embrace the aroma of roasting chestnuts and seasonal pastries. Warm up with a delicious glass of mulled wine as we immerse ourselves in the splendid traditions of the Christmas holidays.
- Included sightseeing tours of Wurzburg, Nuremburg, Passau, Vienna and more
- Discover 6 festive Christmas Markets
- Cruise in luxury aboard the MS Amadeus Star
- Exclusive on-board Bavarian and Vienna Orchestra Quartet performance
DAYS 1-2—UNITED STATES/WELCOME TO FRANKFURT
Welcome to the energetic city of Frankfurt! We’ll travel to the town of Schweinfurt and settle into our hotel for the next two evenings, centrally located within a stone’s throw of the Main River. Tonight we gather together for a welcome dinner. L, D
This morning, travel to the magical town of Wurzburg to revel in the opulent baroque and rococo architecture of this charming city. No visit to Würzburg is complete without a visit to the Würzburg Residence and gardens on the UNESCO World Heritage list. We’ll also visit the celebrated Juliusspital for lunch, followed by a stroll through its storied wine cellar. Afterwards, enjoy free time to explore and discover the charismatic Wurzburg Christmas Market. B, L, D
DAY 4—ROTHENBURG/MS AMADEUS STAR
In Rothenburg, the local Cellar Master welcomes us with a 1600’s reception, after which we take a guided stroll within the storied walls of this medieval town. Then explore the town’s 500-year-old Christmas market, the Reiterlesmarkt. Enjoy roasted chestnuts and perhaps special white mulled cider while browsing the traditional local gifts. Before leaving we’ll be treated to coffee and a Schneeballen pastry, a favorite of this region. Later a real “wow” moment strikes as we board our home for the next six nights in Nuremburg, the MS Amadeus Star. On board, enjoy a holiday welcome dinner hosted by CTD President Steve Uelner. B, D
Our magical Advent journey to the most beautiful Christmas markets along the Danube commences with an introductory sightseeing tour through a festively decorated Nuremberg, home to famous lebkuchen (gingerbread)! The highlight follows—the famous Nuremberg Christmas market, where culinary specialties, artisan crafts and regional products fill the air. This afternoon, we set sail for Regensburg. B, L, D
As you enjoy breakfast, we reach the Bavarian town of Regensburg, which boasts one of the best-preserved medieval old towns in Germany. A guided city walking tour will showcase the city’s highlights. In the afternoon, we’ll visit the Thurn and Taxis Castle and its renown Christmas Market. On board before dinner, a local Bavarian group entertains as we dine and depart for Passau. B, L, D
We arrive in Passau, the romantic “City of Three Rivers”. After breakfast, enjoy your morning relaxing on board the MS Amadeus Star, decorated up for the Yuletide season, or join a guided walking tour through this picturesque town where the Danube, Inn, and Ilz rivers meet. After lunch, visit the festively decorated Christmas market in Passau. Later our ship weighs anchor and sets sail for Austria. B, L, D
DAY 8—MELK ABBEY/VIENNA
We begin our day with a visit to the spectacular Melk Abbey. CTD travelers consistently rave about this moving experience. Later this morning, we’ll return to our ship and cruise this afternoon amongst one of the most beautiful landscape regions in Austria —the Wachau Valley. Following dinner, you’ll be in awe as we take a ride into the heart of Vienna’s City Centre to experience its illuminated parliament and museums. B, L, D
Today will be devoted exclusively to the magical Danube city of Vienna. Enjoy a sightseeing trip around town to take in the beautiful sights. This afternoon, you may wish to return to the famous Christmas village on Maria-Theresien-Platz to enjoy the aromas of Lebkuchen (gingerbread) and roasted almonds. Tonight, our Captain’s Gala Dinner takes place, capped off by an exclusive on-board quartet holiday performance by members of Vienna’s Philharmonic Orchestra. B, L, D
DAY 10—AUF WIEDERSEHEN
After breakfast on board, we head to the airport for our included flight home. We are sure you will depart with long-lasting memories of our travels amongst the most festive Christmas Markets in the world! B
Nights 2-3: Panorama Hotel, Schweinfurt
Nights 4-9: MS Amadeus Star
December 1-10, 2023
Cruise Price Per Person:
Land only pricing available
Chicago, IL or Washington, DC
Pre/Post Tour Hotel
Chicago, IL $188/night
Call for rates in Washington DC
Round-trip airfare from the U.S.
Professional, English speaking Tour Director
Welcome Dinner, Captain’s Gala Dinner, and meals as indicated (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
Included local red & white wines, beer, and soda) with every dinner
Fees and tips for included attractions, meals, crew, and drivers
Luggage handling of one suitcase per person
Free bottled water on coach
24-hour emergency call service
***Enjoy the below Early Booking Discount pricing until March 31, 2023***
Haydn Deck Stern (window) - $4,347
Haydn Deck Forward (window) - $4,447
Strauss Deck Stern (dropdown panoramic windows) - $4,997
Strauss Deck Mid (dropdown panoramic windows) - $5,097
Strauss Deck, Forward (dropdown panoramic windows) - $5,197
Mozart Deck Stern (dropdown panoramic windows) - $5,397
Mozart Deck Mid (dropdown panoramic windows) - $5,497
Mozart Deck Mid Suite (french balcony) - $5,847
Mozart Deck Forward Suite (french balcony) - $5,947
Haydn Deck Single Room (window) - $5,047
Prices vary based on stateroom category. This tour is NOT eligible for Travel More, Save More discount pricing. Mandatory port taxes (per person): $165
Airport Transportation / Vehicle Parking
Our Pre and Post hotels offer complimentary shuttle service to and from the airport. Free parking is offered during the tour with an overnight booked.
Extensive walking is required to fully enjoy this tour. Walking will be on uneven paths that are typical in Europe. While walking canes are allowed, we are unable to accommodate travelers using other mobility devices, including walkers and wheelchairs.
Germany – high of 40°, low of 30°
Austria – high of 40°, low of 30°
Euro (Germany and Austria)
GMT+2 (6 hours ahead of New York)
Hotel and Ship Amenities
All AMADEUS ships have an elevator that operates between the Mozart and Haydn decks. The sun deck is not accessible by elevator.
Wi-Fi is available aboard the ship and the price is fully covered by CTD. We will travel in rural river landscapes, meaning the Wi-Fi connection at times can be limited.
All cabins and suites are equipped with high-quality care products, such as soap, shampoo, body lotion, and shower gel. You will also find a hair dryer, sewing set, shower cap, and nail file in your cabin. Laundry is available onboard for a small fee.
Breakfast and lunch are lavish meals, with evenings featuring chef’s specialties and regional dishes. In addition, a light breakfast and lunch is offered in the Panorama-Bar. There is always a vegetarian option for all meals on board.
A total of three mailings are sent to assist you in preparing for your tour, including information sent upon receipt of your reservation.
Dress on tour is casual. Evening dinners aboard the ship will be a more elegant occasion, so we welcome you to dress in a business casual manner. Sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, visors, and comfortable walking shoes will add to your enjoyment of this tour.
An outlet converter that adapts to European outlets is needed. You can find these at many stores, including Amazon and Walmart.
Travel Protection Available?
Yes, see CountryTravelDiscoveries.com/TravelProtectionPlan.