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Delights of the Danube (Budapest-Passau) Rail and Cruise

4.4 stars(30 reviews)

An enticing cruise from Austria to Hungary

You are viewing the 2023 itinerary. Select your departure year
9 days From £2,395 £2,145 per person
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No Single Supplement

No Single Supplement subject to availability on selected departures. 

2023 Tour code: DLR23

About the tour

Experience the magic of the Danube as we cruise comfortably through Imperial Vienna and Budapest. Step back in time as we explore the Ottoman and Habsburg empires, with plenty of opportunities to taste the regional specialties - a real treat for all the senses.


What’s included


Day 1 - London to Wurzburg

Begin today at London St Pancras*, where you'll meet your Tour Manager as well of the rest of your group, to start your journey to Europe. Board the Eurostar travelling to Brussels, then change for the service to Wurzburg, via Cologne.

*If you would like to travel by air, view our Fly & Cruise option here.

  • Dinner
Day 2 - Continue by rail to Budapest

We make the short walk to Nuremberg station for our train to Budapest, travelling via Vienna. Arriving in Budapest, we meet your Amadeus ship where we are welcomed with a cocktail in the lounge before dinner. Perhaps take some time to relax with your feet up, and to refresh after your journey. Later take in the illuminated sights as we sail around the city on a memorable night cruise.

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 - Discovering Budapest

This morning we enjoy a guided coach and walking tour, introducing us to Budapest's main sights. We pass impressive buildings and monuments on both sides of the Danube, including the neo-Gothic Parliament building, the magnificent State Opera House and St Stephen's Basilica, Budapest Castle, Matthias Church and Fishermen's Bastion.

We return to the ship for lunch, after which you have some free time before we begin cruising to Bratislava, passing through the splendid Danube Bend along the way. This section of the river has a long and fascinating history and from the sun deck or panoramic windows in the bar, you'll be able to see castle ruins, churches, pretty houses hidden in the hills and dense forests, all soaked in the golden glow of twilight.

  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4 - Arrival in Bratislava

Your morning is at leisure aboard before we moor up early this afternoon. After lunch, we set out on a guided coach and walking tour of the Slovakian capital. Located in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains, Bratislava straddles the Danube which neatly divides the city into two parts; the Baroque Old Town (Stare Mesto) and the new city. This picture-postcard destination boasts historic Gothic buildings, several universities, a wealth of museums and galleries, and a refreshing cosmopolitan atmosphere. The historic centre features delightful cobblestoned roads, pedestrianised plazas, 18th-century rococo buildings and street cafés galore. Following our excursion, you have plenty of free time to explore.

  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5 - The history and music of Vienna

After a calm night of cruising, we arrive into glorious Vienna for a sightseeing tour. This is a chance to relish in Austria's Imperial heritage, one full of tradition and rich in architectural, artistic and musical heritage. You'll see many of Vienna's most ornate buildings, including the impressive Opera House - one of the leading opera venues in the world, as well as the grand Parliament Building.

After dinner we are entertained by a private classical music recital.

  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6 - Melk Abbey

Today we reach Austria's Wachau Valley, a famous wine-making region. We arrive in the idyllic village of Dürnstein where you have time at leisure. As we sit down to lunch on board, we begin cruising along the picturesque Wachau Valley, an extremely scenic area with green valleys and vineyards rising up from the river, picturesque riverside towns, and commanding fortresses with sweeping views. We then journey by coach to Melk Abbey, enjoying entrance to this 11th-century Benedictine Abbey which stands on a rocky outcrop overlooking the Danube. It is also home to the Abbey Church, considered one of the most beautiful Baroque churches north of the Alps.

  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7 - Salzburg or the Austrian Lake District

On Day 7 we disembark in Linz this morning, where you have a choice of excursions. You could head further into the countryside for a day spent amidst the spectacular scenery of the Austrian lakes. Make stops at UNESCO listed Hallstatt, one of Austria's most photographed villages thanks to its traditional pastel-coloured houses, Hallstättersee Lake, and Mondsee. This pretty town is set on the lake of the same name and its most famous sight is the 15th-century parish church, which featured in the wedding scenes of 'The Sound of Music'. Otherwise, travel by coach to Salzburg, via Mondsee, one of Austria's most famous cities and known as the birthplace of Mozart. A guided sightseeing tour reveals the city's internationally renowned Baroque architecture, a well-deserved UNESCO World Heritage site. We rejoin the ship in Passau.

  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8 - Regensburg

Regensburg is our port of call this morning, which we explore on foot. This medieval town contains many buildings that testify to its history as a trading centre which had a huge infl uence on the whole region from the 9th century onwards. Back on board tonight, we attend the captain's gala dinner, a chance to don our evening wear and celebrate our cruise experience.

  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9 - Journey home

On Day 9 after breakfast, we disembark in Passau to start the journey back to the UK by rail.

  • Breakfast

Additional information

Info - Travel Options

We offer a Standard Class and First Class rail options for departures on this tour. You can find out which class each departure is by clicking on the information button in the pricing grid. (Look for S - Standard Class and F - First Class)

Departure times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.




MS Amadeus Silver III
MS Amadeus Star
MS Amadeus Riva

Enhance your holiday


London Hotels
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Door to door luggage upgrade from £80


4.4 stars4.4 / 5 · 30 reviews

  1. 5 stars
  2. 4 stars
  3. 3 stars
  4. 2 stars
  5. 1 star

Stuart Stanton

4 stars

Submitted 15 Oct 2022

River vessel was good Food good Locations were good. Days ashore seem to be either too long or to short, no sort of happy medium Train travelling was made arduous due to bad time keeping on German Railways

Collected by Trustpilot

M Llewellyn

5 stars

Submitted 11 Oct 2022

Excellent tour. This was our 4th attempt to go on the trip due to Covid and it was well worth the wait. Great tour leader in Neil. The combination of the rail element and river cruise, the various tours and the convivial company were first class.

Collected by Trustpilot

NHS BOWLS CLUB at Belchamps Scout Activity Centre

5 stars

Submitted 10 Oct 2022

Brilliant trip , great rail journeys and excursions, great food the the cruise

Collected by Trustpilot


2 stars

Submitted 10 Oct 2022

As has also been emailed by my wife we were most dissappointed with our Great Rail experience, especially as were intoducing our two travelling companions to their first Great Rail experience. Our dissappointment mainly revolved around the chaotic, long and tiring and train journeys with no food provided. Both outbound and homeward journeys were anything but a "great rail journey". Although train seats are booked the train changes were very disorganised and fruaght with pressure trying to find the correct platform, coach and seats whilst fighting against other passengers, party members and their luggage to get on and off trains. A very unpleasant experience indeed. Also, we paid for a top deck cabin for the Danube cruise and found that, four nights out of the seven on board, our view out was blocked by mooring alongside other boats, cutting out views, light and ventilation which we had paid extra for. Most evenings and part of the days in our cabin was spent in darkness. No fault could be found with the tour managers. The train tour manager, Jackie, did her best under very difficult circumstances and Ed, the ship's tour manager was helpful, attentive and listened to our grievances. The actual Danube cruise and destinations were a delight and the service provided by the ship's crew and the food provided on board was first class. However, unless Great Rail Journeys can improve on the actual rail experience, we certainly won't be booking any further "Great Rail" journeys.

Collected by Trustpilot

Mr Gareth Evans

5 stars

Submitted 10 Oct 2022

Excellent cruise; outstanding ship and crew (Amadeus Star); long journey.

Collected by Trustpilot


5 stars

Submitted 10 Oct 2022

Fantastic cruise. Everything about it was amazing, food,crew,excursions etc. Would definitely recommend!

Collected by Trustpilot

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Delights of the Danube (Budapest-Passau) Rail and Cruise

An enticing cruise from Austria to Hungary


Lynne Broadley
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