Arrive in Budapest in the early afternoon and embark on your Scenic Space-Ship. Enjoy a welcome dinner on board this evening.
Freechoice: Make the most of a guided city tour including a piano concert, or learn about the significant Jewish events throughout history that have shaped today’s culture on a guided tour with an expert local guide. Alternatively, if you are feeling more active, hike to Buda Hill, or choose to travel to nearby Szentendre. Known for its museums, galleries and artists, you’ll have the opportunity to discover this charming town on a guided city tour.
Enjoy views of rolling hills and quaint riverside towns as we cruise north along the Danube to Austria's enchanting capital, Vienna.
Freechoice: Take a guided tour of Schönbrunn Palace. Witness the sheer opulence of the Habsburg Empire and delight in the festive ambience at the market stalls that grace the palace courtyard. Alternatively, visit the Belvedere Museum, one of Europe’s most stunning Baroque landmarks, or discover a different side of Vienna on a guided bicycle tour to Danube Island.
Later, explore the magical Viennese Christmas markets at your leisure. An age-old tradition, the forerunners of the present-day events date back to the Middle Ages when in 1298 Albrecht I granted Vienna’s citizens the privilege of holding a December Market or ‘Krippenmarkt’. Nowadays, over 20 official advent markets sell a vast array of seasonal gifts and mouth-watering treats.
This evening, take in the luxury of Palais Liechtenstein while enjoying a glass of fine Austrian Sekt, and enjoy an enchanting private evening concert in this sumptuous venue featuring the timeless music of Strauss and Mozart
Freechoice: Be guided through Melk’s magnificent 18th century Benedictine Abbey, or if you’re feeling more active, embark on a guided bike ride along the river from Melk to one of the most enchanting villages in the region, Dürnstein. Alternatively, meet a Schnapps producer and sample some of the many flavours on offer, or taste your way through the Wachau Valley delighting in many of the regional delicacies.
Later, spend the afternoon soaking up the wonderful Christmas atmosphere.
Freechoice: Take an excursion to the medieval Czech city of Cesky Krumlov and discover its World Heritage-listed Old Town filled with magical Christmas cheer, or journey to Salzburg and explore the birthplace of Mozart and the city backdrop for the movie ‘The Sound of Music’, followed by free time to visit Salzburg’s Christmas markets which date back to the 15th century. Alternatively, stay on board your Scenic Space-Ship for a cooking demonstration of local recipes as you cruise between Linz and Passau.
Freechoice: Experience the true wonder of Christmas at the romantic and picturesque markets of Thurn und Taxis Palace. This magical setting will make you feel like you have entered a fairy tale with gently lit lanterns and candles providing a charming atmosphere. Or, enjoy a walking tour of Regensburg. Located on the confluence of three rivers, Regensburg is known as the best preserved medieval city in Germany.
Today travel by coach to Prague, one of the truly magical cities of Europe. Complete your journey with a three night stay at one of our luxurious city central hotels.
This morning join your knowledgeable local guide on a fascinating walk through the city and view the famous Astronomical Clock. Afterwards, venture across the world-famous Charles Bridge. This incredibly beautiful structure was commissioned in 1357 by Charles IV after the Judith Bridge was destroyed by floods.
Stroll this magnificent city at your leisure. Situated on the banks of the River Vltava in central Bohemia, the beautiful city of Prague is rich in history and home to some of the world’s most striking architectural wonders. There’s no need to plan ahead – your Tour Director is on hand to take care of everything.
Your journey concludes today.
This itinerary is a guide only and may be amended for operational reasons such as high and low water. As such, the cruise may operate altered from that stated above.
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