Jewels of Central Europe
A sailing along the Moselle, Rhine, Main, and Danube Rivers is the centerpiece of your 18-day rail-river cruise vacation that begins in the City of Light, Paris, and takes you by high-speed train to Luxembourg, where you will board your river cruise ship for the 14-night journey through Germany, Austria and Hungary.
Sail along the Moselle, Rhine, Main, and Danube Rivers and through the dramatic Rhine Gorge and Main Danube Canal on this remarkable river cruise vacation. Your journey begins with two overnights in Paris, guided city sightseeing. and leisure time to explore the “City of Light” on your own. Travel from Paris to Metz or Luxembourg via high-speed train and embark your river cruise ship in Remich. Guided sightseeing in each city shows you the highlights, with inside visits to Reichsburg Castle in Cochem, Siegfried's Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum in charming Rüdesheim, the Bishop's Residenz in Würzburg, and Melk's Benedictine Abbey. Pass the legendary Lorelei rock, and participate in a lively tasting of some of Germany's famous beers. All of this and much more await you on this marvelous cruise vacation.
Highlights and Inclusions
- Two nights of hotel accommodations in Paris
- High-speed TGV train ride
- Guided sightseeing tours at nearly every stop
- Wine tasting in Bernkastel
- Visit to Siegfried's Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum
- Up-close look at the small towns of Main River Village
- Stop at the Bishop's Residenz in Würzburg
- Excursion to Munich with a visit to the Marienplatz
- Beer tasting in Regensburg
- Tour of Melk's Benedictine Abbey
Ship and Stateroom Inclusions:
- 14 nights aboard a cruise ship
- 42 delicious meals: 16 breakfasts, 12 lunches and 14 dinners
- Captain's welcome and farewell receptions
- Welcome dinner
- Complimentary drinks while on board
- Daily afternoon tea
- Scenic cruising along the Moselle, Rhine, Main and Danube Rivers
- Free Wi-Fi Internet
- Use of the ship's Sky Deck
Day 1 - Depart USA for Paris
Embark on your transatlantic flight to Paris from your U.S. gateway. (International flight not included in tour price.)
Day 2- Arrive In Paris, France
Welcome to Paris, France's capital on the River Seine and the “City of Light,” where romance fills the air! Overnight Paris.
Day 3- Paris
Known as one of the world's most romantic and lively cities, Paris is a delight for all your senses. Your included city sightseeing shows you magnificent must-see sights, such as Notre Dame Cathedral; the unique Louvre Museum, with its glass pyramid as a contrast to its ancient architecture; the commemorative Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower. In your free time, stroll down the Champs-Elysées with its lavish cafés, or perhaps visit the world-famous Louvre or Montmartre, with its gleaming white Sacré Coeur Basilica and bevy of artists on Place du Tertre. Paris is also well-known for its colorful nightlife, and an optional outing to one of the world's most famous cabaret shows, the Moulin Rouge, is available. All of this awaits your discovery! Overnight Paris. (B)
Day 4- Paris-Remich, Luxembourg (Embarkation)
This morning, board a high-speed train for a swift and comfortable journey to Metz or Luxembourg. Continue to Remich in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, where your river cruise vessel is docked on the Moselle River. Before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception. The Moselle River is some 312 miles long, rising in the Vosges Mountains of northeastern France and entering Germany at Trier. Overnight ship. (B, D)
Day 5- Trier, Germany
At the head of the Moselle Valley is is Trier, Germany's oldest city. Some say Trier is even older than Rome and that it was populated over a thousand years before the Romans arrived. Many Roman remains have survived, including a 20,000-seat amphitheater; the Porta Nigra, the only surviving fortified gate from the original Roman settlement, which still gives access to the town's center; imperial baths and the Roman Bridge, Germany's oldest bridge, with stone pilings dating from 144-152 A.D. - all evidence of this once-grand Roman city. Choose from an included guided city sightseeing or the more history-focused “Roman Trier” guided tour. As you cruise the wide, peaceful curves of the Moselle River, it quickly becomes obvious why the Moselle Valley is famous for its picturesque scenery and that this is an important wine-growing region. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 6- Bernkastel
In the middle of the Moselle region is the charming wine village of Bernkastel, with its fascinating narrow streets and half-timbered houses that have stood since the Middle Ages. Enjoy a guided walk that includes the beautiful marketplace with its renaissance-style Town Hall - built in 1608 - and the "pointed house," build in 1416. Wine growers in this area look after Germany's largest expanse of vineyards, the most celebrated of the vintages being the Bernkasteler Doktor. During your free time this afternoon, you might like to visit the Moselle Wine Museum. This evening, enjoy a tasting of some of these well-loved German wines. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 7- Rhine Gorge to Rüdesheim
This morning, sail through the dramatic Rhine Gorge, the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine. Here, ancient castles stand sentry on lofty cliffs rising 400 feet above the waters. Cruise past the legendary rock of the Lorelei, where echoes of enchanted siren song lured unwitting sailors to their doom. In Rüdesheim, the quintessential Rhine Valley wine town, visit Siegfried's Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum, where you see and hear a large collection of self-playing calliopes and music boxes from the 18th to the early 20th centuries. Enjoy a special treat, then there's free time to pick up some souvenirs on the narrow, cobblestoned Drosselgasse, where colorful flowers, open-air wine gardens and live music add to the festive atmosphere. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 8- Main River Village
On the banks of the Main River you find cultural gems of small towns, many of them tucked away behind defensive walls and towered gates. With half-timbere houses, narrow streets and Medieval town centers, these picturesque Bavarian villages are a photographer's delight. Join your Local Guide to experience one of these towns on a guided walk. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 9- Würzburg
Relax on board this morning as you cruise the Main River. This afternoon, arrive in Würzburg. Surrounded by verdant hillside vineyards, Würzburg, the “Pearl of the Romantic Road,” makes an immediate impression, with imposing Fortress Marienberg perched above town and the 15th-century Alte Mainbrucke (Old Main Bridge). On your guided sightseeing tour, visit the magnificent baroque Bishop's Residenz, home to the largest ceiling fresco ever painted. Then there is time to relax, do some shopping or stop in a konditorei for a mouthwatering pastry and a cup of coffee - a German afternoon tradition. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 10- Bamberg
Enjoy another pleasant morning of sailing before you arrive in Medieval Bamberg in the early afternoon. The town is the former residence of one of Germany's most powerful imperial dynasties and today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your guided walking tour takes in its historic center, including the great 13th century Romanesque cathedral and the fascinating Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall) - built on an island in the middle of the Regnitz River when the bishop refused to give the townspeople land for a town hall! Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 11- Nuremberg/Excursion to Munich
Early this morning, arrive in Nuremberg and after breakfast, drive to Munich, the capital of Bavaria. With its historical museums, splendid English Garden, traditional cafés and delightful shops, Munich has plenty to see and do. A local guide shows you the highlights of this fascinating city, including Nymphenburg Palace, summer residence of the Bavarian monarchs; Marienplatz, with its Old and New Town Halls; and the gothic Frauenkirche, a prominent landmark for Munich. Then, enjoy time on your own in this vibrant city. Watch the famous Glockenspiel, which recreates a royal wedding from the 16th century; linger at an outdoor café; visit St. Peter's, the oldest church in town; or maybe relax alongside the locals at one of the many biergarten or breweries to sample one of the Bavarian beer specialties. Return to your ship in the afternoon. Overnight ship. (B, D)
Day 12- Nuremberg to Roth
This morning, the choice is yours - join a Certified Local Guide for a Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour or for guided sightseeing of the nearby town of Roth. This delightful town, with its half-timbered houses and market square, is also an industrial center for textile manufacturing. Visit the interesting Industrial Museum, and then in contrast, take pictures of Schloss Ratibor, an ancient hunting lodge, built in 1535, with a picturesque inner courtyard. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 13- Regensburg
Arrive in Regensburg today. Dating back to the time of the Celts around 500 B.C., Regensburg is one of Germany's best-preserved medieval cities. Established during the Holy Roman Empire and the only German city not bombed during WWII, Regensburg has at least 1,300 listed buildings of “historic interest.” Architectural highlights of your guided walk include the Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall), built in the 13th century, and Porta Pretoria, gates to an ancient Roman fort built in 179 A.D. Wander through the city's lanes and alleys to discover the many mansions with high towers. Wealthy families built these towers to emphasize their status and wealth during the Middle Ages, and many still remain today. Walk across the 12th-century Steinerne Brücke (Stone Bridge), the oldest of its kind in Germany. Grab a beer and enjoy an included snack at the Historische Wurstküche (Old Sausage Kitchen), one of Germany's oldest restaurants. Here - where the locals congregate - feel the vibrant atmosphere and take in the remarkable views along the river. Before dinner we'll introduce you to some of Germany's famous beers! Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 14- Passau
This morning, dock in Passau. Uniquely located where the Inn, Ilz and Danube Rivers converge, Passau is a maze of narrow cobblestone streets lined with beautiful patrician houses. St. Stephen's Cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian baroque architecture, houses one of the world's largest church organs with 17,774 pipes. Take in the highlights on the included guided walk. Alternatively, choose from several full-day optional excursions while your ship continues to sail into Austria. Rejoin the vessel in the late afternoon. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 15- Melk to Vienna
This morning, enjoy a guided vist of Melk's magnificent 11th-century Benedictine Abbey, one of Europe's largest monasteries. The abbey houses an ornate library with over 80,000 printed books and 2,000 manuscripts. Words cannot describe the splendor of the church with its frescoed ceilings, stunning high altar, marble statues and 210-foot-high cupola. During lunchtime, cruise through the picturesque Wachau Valley. Pass the magnificent baroque Stiftskirche, with its blue façade, the landmark of Dürnstein, before arriving in Vienna this evening. Known as the “City of Music,” it inspired the creative genius of Mozart, Beethoven and Strauss. An optional concert is available tonight. Overnight Vienna. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 16- Vienna
Once the center of the mighty Habsburg Empire, Austria's magical capital on the blue Danube is a showcase of gilded architecture. This is home to the lavish Hofburg Imperial Palace complex, with its Vienna Boy's Choir and dazzling Lipizzaner stallions; the neo-renaissance Vienna Opera House; awe-inspiring St. Stephen's Cathedral and countless other sights shown to you by your Local Guide during your included city tour. Shop in the delightful pedestrian Kärntnerstrasse, and be sure to take a break and enjoy a piece of decadent Sachertorte or Apfelstrudel in one of the classic Viennese coffee houses, historic institutions that helped shape Viennese culture! In the late afternoon, leave Vienna for Budapest. Overnight Budapest. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 17- Budapest, Hungary
Spanning the banks of the Danube, Budapest is one of Eastern Europe's liveliest cities. Whether you are seeing the sights, shopping for handcrafted embroidery or Herend porcelain or basking in the coffee house culture over a rich cream cake in the renowned Gerbeaud Café, Budapest's unique energy is positively palatable. On your guided sightseeing tour, see Heroes Square, as well as the massive hilltop castle complex with its remarkable Fishermen's Bastion and 11th-century Matthias Church, the coronation spot of several Hungarian monarchs. Take note of the city's eight bridges - many famous sights in and of themselves - which connect ancient Buda on the right bank with Pest on the left. You may even want to walk across Chain Bridge, which was built in 1849 and is a symbol of Budapest. Perhaps visit St. Stephen's Basilica; shop at the Great Market Hall and purchase paprika at one of its 180 vendor stalls; wander around the Royal Palace grounds or stroll along Váci utca, the main shopping street. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 18- Budapest (Disembarkation)
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
Train and Hotel Accommodations
Hotel nights in Paris are at the Hotel du Collectionneur Arc de Triomphe (or similar).
Cruising on the Avalon Luminary is the ideal way to experience the majesty, extensive history and fascinating culture of some of Europe's oldest cities along its legendary rivers. Built in 2010, the Avalon Luminary holds a maximum of just 138 passengers. Visit multiple countries and cities and unpack only once, so you spend your time experiencing and enjoying Europe rather than dealing with the logistics of travel. Enjoy a highly personalized cruise experience, spacious deluxe staterooms and suites, contemporary décor, and popular onboard amenities, including a large Sky Deck with whirlpool and Sky Bistro, lounge and a bar serving premium spirits, a complimentary Internet Corner and free Wi-Fi throughout the ship, Fitness Center with state-of-the-art equipment, hair salon, and elevator.
Avalon Artistry II
The Avalon Artistry II delivers an intimate setting, along with two full decks of suites featuring Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows that transform the living space into a unique Open-Air Balcony®. With 200 square feet, Panorama Suites are more than 30% larger than the industry standard, giving you the rare opportunity to wake each morning to the enchanting scenery and fresh breezes. Onboard amenities include a complimentary Internet Corner and Wi-Fi access, an expanded Fitness Center, and a spacious Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs, shade system, whirlpool, and the delightful Sky Bistro.
The Cruise Ship depends on the departure date so please call our agents if you would like more information on this.
Dates & Prices
Select from the packages below to view prices for this tour.
|26th May 2016||$5,848||Book Now|
|7th July 2016||$5,599||Book Now|
|4th August 2016||$5,599||Book Now|
|29th September 2016||$5,699||Book Now|
|26th May 2016||$7,947||Book Now|
|7th July 2016||$7,697||Book Now|
|4th August 2016||$7,697||Book Now|
|29th September 2016||$7,797||Book Now|
|26th May 2016||$9,647||Book Now|
|7th July 2016||$9,397||Book Now|
|4th August 2016||$9,397||Book Now|
|29th September 2016||$9,497||Book Now|
|16th June 2016||$5,799||Book Now|
|13th October 2016||$5,449||Book Now|
|16th June 2016||$7,097||Book Now|
|13th October 2016||$6,747||Book Now|
|16th June 2016||$8,597||Book Now|
|13th October 2016||$8,247||Book Now|
|Departs Daily between 1st January 2017 and 31st December 2017||$0||
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Artistry II - Deluxe Stateroom D,E: Departs 26th May 2016 ($5,848), 7th July 2016 ($5,599), 4th August 2016 ($5,599), 29th September 2016 ($5,699)
Artistry II - Panorama Suite A,B,P: Departs 26th May 2016 ($7,947), 7th July 2016 ($7,697), 4th August 2016 ($7,697), 29th September 2016 ($7,797)
Artistry II - Royal Suite: Departs 26th May 2016 ($9,647), 7th July 2016 ($9,397), 4th August 2016 ($9,397), 29th September 2016 ($9,497)
Luminary - Deluxe Stateroom E: Departs 16th June 2016 ($5,799), 13th October 2016 ($5,449)
Luminary - Deluxe Stateroom A,B,P: Departs 16th June 2016 ($7,097), 13th October 2016 ($6,747)
Luminary - Avalon Suite: Departs 16th June 2016 ($8,597), 13th October 2016 ($8,247)
Register for free notifications for 2017 dates and prices.: Departs daily between 1st January 2017 and 31st December 2017 from $0