When you arrive in Prague, you will be met at the airport and transferred to your centrally located hotel for a three-night stay.
Today, join a walking tour of Prague to explore its vivid history through its Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture, with each style encapsulating a slice of the city’s past. After passing through three castle courtyards, you will visit St. Vitus Cathedral, then we walk down the Castle steps with a wonderful view over the city of Prague and we continue to Charles Bridge which we cross to reach the Old Town of Prague. We finish the city sightseeing tour in front of the famous Astronomical Clock at Old Town Square.
A guided tour of Prague
Coffee and cake at Lobkowicz Palace
Today is yours to spend exploring Prague at leisure, perhaps uncovering the secrets of Josefov, the Jewish Quarter and Malá Strana, one of the most historic regions in the city. Your tour director will be available to help you plan your day and to answer any questions that you may have.
Tastes of Czechia (extra expense)
After breakfast, it is time to leave Prague’s idyllic centre for your transfer to your Star-Ship in Regensburg.
Explore the medieval centre of Regensburg with a local guide, walking the cobblestone streets, passing the patrician houses of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Old Town. Alternatively, join a bike tour to the Walhalla monument which towers high above the slopes of the Danube. From here you can enjoy a fascinating view of the river and the surrounding landscape.
This evening, enjoy a welcome reception with dinner, followed by a traditional Bavarian band on board.
Traditional Bavarian band on board
Guided bike tour to the Walhalla monument
Guided tour of Regensburg
Excursion to Nuremberg (extra expense)
Today, we’ll cruise into the heart of Passau, where three of Europe’s main rivers converge in the shadows of the castle. Your guided tour of this illustrious city will unveil how it was rebuilt following fires in the 17th century. Italian architects left their mark with a scattering of Baroque architecture, including St. Stephen’s Cathedral. If you are feeling active, you can join a bike tour along the River Inn, one of the three rivers converging in Passau.
Enjoy exploring the city before returning to your Star-Ship for lunch and an afternoon of sailing along the Danube River.
Guided bike tour along the River Inn
Guided tour of Passau
Excursion to the Bavarian forest (extra expense)
Today, you can choose to hike the ruins of Dürnstein Castle, offering delightful panoramic views of the surrounding medieval villages. Afterwards, we will sail through the fascinating UNESCO World Heritage-listed Wachau Valley and on to Krems. Alternatively, you can embark on a guided bike tour from Dürnstein to Krems, passing terraced vineyards, castles and ruins along the way, before meeting your Star-Ship where it is docked.
This afternoon, enjoy a guided tour of Göttweig Abbey, a true treasure overlooking the Wachau from a hill covered by vineyards and forests. As part of the UNESCO World Heritage landscape since 2001, it is one of Austria's most important Benedictine abbeys and attracts visitors from all over the world. Built in 1083, it continues to serve as a spiritual center in the heart of Lower Austria and is run by a community of about 45 monks. Visible from great distance, the abbey provides epic panoramas when you visit.
Guided bike tour along the Danube River
Guided hike to Dürnstein Castle
Guided tour of Göttweig Abbey
Sweeping boulevards and world-famous art exhibitions welcome you to Vienna, a city which perfectly encapsulates the opulence of the Habsburg Monarchy and their ornate Baroque palaces. For art-lovers, there is no other place like the Austrian capital, not just because the city is packed with museums and artwork but because of its variety. Your tour will include a visit to the Kunsthistorisches Museum, the largest art museum in the country and one of the most important museums worldwide.
Alternatively, embark on a guided cycling tour from where your Star-Ship is docked to the idyllic Danube Island.
Guided bike tour in Vienna
Vienna art tour with a visit to the Kunsthistorisches Museum
Viennese evening concert (extra expense)
Tastes of Vienna (extra expense)
A delightful scattering of Baroque palaces and Gothic architecture that tell tales of a communist past are yours to uncover as we sail towards Bratislava. Enjoy a guided tour of the city’s enchanting history, taking in the neo-Renaissance glory of the Slovak National Theatre and the Episcopal Summer Palace.
Alternatively, embark on a guided hike to Bratislava Castle and its idyllic Baroque gardens, offering the perfect backdrop to the Shakespeare festival that takes place during the summer months.
This afternoon, enjoy coffee and cake in the home of a Slovakian family before being welcomed to your farewell dinner.
Home-hosted coffee and cake with a Slovakian family
Hike to Bratislava Castle
Walking tour of Bratislava
Skoda tour of post-communist Bratislava (extra expense)
Carpathian wine route (extra expense)
Welcome to Budapest, a city generously steeped in history and culture, where ancient architecture exists alongside contemporary buildings. Enjoy a guided city tour, starting at the Liberty Statue and encompassing many of Budapest’s hotspots. You’ll see Heroes’ Square and the Buda Castle district, before a walking tour up to Matthias Church and the Fisherman’s Bastion, providing the best panoramas of the city and river. Alternatively, enjoy a hike to Buda Hill and gaze over the Danube.
Traditional Hungarian folklore show on board
Hike to Buda Hill
Guided coach tour of Budapest
Jewish Heritage tour (extra expense)
Excursion to Szentendre (extra expense)
After breakfast, it is time to say farewell to your fellow guests and disembark the ship for your transfer to the airport, taking wonderful memories of the Viennese skyline and architectural masterpieces with you.
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. Please refer to our terms and conditions for further information.
The world may have changed, however, our commitment to our guests and crew, the guest experience and their health, safety and wellbeing remains our key priority. We are working closely with Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), local and international Government Health agencies, to ensure our protocols exceed the latest regulatory requirements. Our Health & Safety Steering Committee oversees all health and safety policies and training with Emerald Cruises, ensuring you can travel with complete confidence that your wellbeing and safety are taken care of to the highest standard. In addition, we are implementing the most recent insights and technologies, with our Emerald Cruises team dedicated to exceeding the levels of cleanliness required in today’s travel climate.
We are continuously updating our protocols to safeguard both the health, safety and the experience of our valued guests. You will be informed about these important procedures, well in advance of your journey departure, which may include the following information and guidelines:
Medical Evaluation & Test
To ensure all of our guests are safe and well before your journey with us begins, we will require you to complete a pre-departure medical health evaluation. During the phased embarkation process you, and your fellow passengers, will be tested for COVID-19 by a medical specialist. This will allow you to relax with complete peace-of-mind when you board our Star-Ships, in the company of other like-minded travelers.
Our Dedicated Team
Our Captains, Hotel Managers and Cruise Directors, alongside their exceptional teams, will deliver a first-class level of service during your time traveling with us. You can enjoy the same exciting program of on board and on shore experiences, tailored to smaller groups to allow for safe social distancing. The team are readily available to ensure every detail of your journey with us is memorable, for all the right reasons. They will ensure health and safety protocols are followed on a daily basis.
Having the best crew to look after you is at the heart of our core values at Emerald Cruises, and we will go the extra mile to ensure our crew is healthy in doing so. All crew will be regularly tested for COVID-19 and will have daily temperature and health checks. They will also be trained and regularly briefed on all aspects in preventing COVID-19 amongst themselves as well as our guests. They will go beyond the ordinary to make your cruise a truly exceptional experience.
Contact-Free Check In & Check Out
We have adjusted the various touchpoints of your journey, allowing you to check in and check out in a completely contact-free way. Through a phased embarkation you will be able to arrive and depart from your Star-Ship smoothly and with safe social proximity in mind. And, of course, every time you return to your Star-Ship, our crew will be there to greet you with a warm smile.
Briefings & Screenings
Our medical expert will host mandatory briefings and screenings. These events are designed to ensure every member of our guests and crew are healthy, and also offer an opportunity to allay any concerns or ask any questions you may have about our safety protocols.
Enhanced Cleaning Commitment
Our on board crew will be increasing and enhancing our already frequent and high standard cleaning protocols in public areas and suites, leaving surfaces and spaces spotless. Additional care and attention will be paid to high contact zones, such as communal restrooms and dining facilities.
Socially Aware Dining
You can expect the same delightful dining experiences when you travel with us, savoring a choice of dishes inspired by regional cuisine and local produce. We are adapting and redesigning our on board food and beverage service to ensure extra care is taken in order to minimize social contact. We will serve our delicious food a la carte or via served buffets.
The spacious surrounds of our ships in combination with the guest numbers provide ample room for you to relax, allowing for an abundance of personal space. We are introducing contact-free movement across our Star-Ships to further reduce risks. Contact-free hand sanitizer dispensers will be readily available in all public spaces and guest corridors on board, whilst automated doors and contact-free guest servicing will minimize the number of touchpoints.
Our Star-Ships are equipped with air circulation systems. These systems ensure there is no re-circulation of inside air on board the ship. When you are relaxing in your suite you will be breathing air from outside the ship that is channeled directly to your suite. The air will also be released from your suite directly to the outside.
Smaller Groups & Social Proximity
Discovering the local culture of your destination is the highlight of every river cruise. Create memories to cherish during our choice of on shore excursions. You will travel in smaller groups, allowing for a more intimate travel experience, whilst respecting social proximity and destination specific regulations. To enhance your sightseeing, you can utilize our digital headsets, which will act as your personal tour guide and travel map.
Carefully Selected Local Partners
As well as enhancing our health and safety protocols on board and with our crew, we’re working closely with our local partners. We have forged long-standing relationships with our local partners, all of whom have been carefully selected for their expertise and high levels of service, and are committed to ensuring your safety. They will receive extensive training to adhere with our enhanced protocols. We will also introduce strict control and screening procedures for anyone boarding our Star-Ships.
Wellness Throughout Your Journey
Your wellbeing is our number one priority, both during your time on board and on shore. Journey to and from your destination with complete peace-of-mind. All transport vehicles will be equipped with hand sanitizer and will undergo deep cleaning after every journey, surpassing the high industry standards required. You can also rest assured that we will monitor social proximity, allowing you to travel safely, with plenty of personal space.
We are committed to continually reviewing and updating our protocols and guidelines as new information becomes available, to ensure that our guests can travel safely in the many destinations we operate in.
This trip was wonderful, with only 160 passengers we were treated royally. Everyone on board the ship worked with only one thing in mind to please the customers.
Derek was very thorough and easy to work with. Our trip was what we expected.
We were fortunate the trip went as planned. A lock was damaged and the ship we were scheduled for was unavailable. Emerald provided a different ship and we completed our full itinerary. Great job Emerald. The trip wonderful. Great staff, tours and food. Our Affordable agent Allyson fulfilled all our needs efficiently providing excellent customer care.
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We had an outstanding trip down the Danube on Emerald Waterways. The food was amazing, the service was absolutely top-notch, the places we stopped (Passau, Linz and Cesky Krumlov, Vienna, Bratislava, and Budapest) were all wonderful in their own way. The options provided by Emerald (active vs. included, and the add-on activities) were just right. Our Cruise Director and the Activity Manager were very knowledgeable and attentive throughout our trip. As alway, Affordable Tours helped us book, and provided great follow-up care when we needed it.