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Fairytale Bavaria & The Beautiful Blue Danube

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Explore the mountains and castles of Bavaria before cruising down the delightful Danube, exploring its riverbanks.

2024 Tour code: BDR24

About the tour

Bavaria's wonderful castles, mysterious forests and magical mountains create a stunning backdrop to this majestic tour. With three nights in Füssen, we uncover hidden gems and soak up the region's natural beauty, including a visit to the famous Neuschwanstein Castle and a journey on the Zugspitze Railway ascending the highest mountain in Germany.

We then board our cruise ship and begin sailing along the beautiful Danube. Enjoy leisurely cruising through four countries and three capital cities, with plenty of time to admire the delightful river scenery. From the enchanting town of Dürnstein and the dramatically located Abbey of Melk to the imperial grandeur of Vienna and the vibrant spirit of Budapest, discover the mix of cultures, history, and landscapes along this iconic river's banks.

Unforgettable Experiences

Zugspitze Railway
Zugspitze Railway
Ascend the majestic Zugspitze, Germany’s highest mountain, on the fabulous Zugspitze Railway.
Budapest
Budapest
Immerse yourself in the sensational ‘Pearl of the Danube’ - Budapest - with a guided tour of its striking castle, stunning buildings, and impressive monuments.
Vienna
Vienna
Discover the Baroque streets and imperial palaces of Vienna on a sightseeing tour.
Wachau Valley
Wachau Valley
Visit the 11th-century Melk Abbey with beautiful views across the Danube before sailing through the verdant valleys and vineyards of the beautiful Wachau Valley.
Bratislava
Bratislava
Admire ornate buildings, fascinating museums, and interesting galleries on a guided tour of Bratislava, the Slovakian capital.
Linz
Linz
Explore a charming blend of ancient and modern architecture on a guided tour of lovely Linz.

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 – To vibrant Stuttgart

Meeting at London St Pancras, our holiday begins as we board the Eurostar to Paris. We continue to Stuttgart and spend our first night in this lively city.

Includes
  • Dinner
Day 2 – Picturesque Füssen

This morning we journey to Füssen, on the banks of the glistening Lech River. We spend our next three nights here amongst the stunning beauty. After checking into our hotel, there's time to explore our new enchanting alpine surroundings before dinner this evening.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 - The fairytale Neuschwanstein Castle

One of Bavaria's finest castles awaits us after breakfast today. Entrance to the castle is included where we can enjoy spectacular views overlooking the Schwangau Valley. Commissioned by the reclusive King Ludwig II of Bavaria, the castle is an architectural masterpiece and a testament to the king's romantic vision.

Built in a striking Romanesque Revival style, it features soaring towers, turrets, and battlements, all of which are set against a backdrop of rugged mountains and verdant forests. Its interior is just as impressive, with ornate carvings, lavish murals, and an opulent throne room that showcases the king's fascination with medieval lore and chivalry.

Interestingly, the castle's construction was plagued by setbacks and financial difficulties, and so was never fully completed during King Ludwig's lifetime. However, the castle remains a symbol of the king's visionary spirit and a source of inspiration for millions of people around the world.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4 - Beautiful views on The Zugspitze Railway

Today we ascend the highest mountain in Germany, the noble Zugspitze. To reach its peak, we first board the wonderful Zugspitze Railway, and journey through lush green meadows, rocky terrain, and, eventually, snow-covered mountains.

The final leg of our journey is taken by cable car and, as we step out at the summit, the panoramic views of the incredible German and Austrian Alps surround us. On our descent, we stop at beautiful Lake Eibsee - a picturesque area of turquoise waters, surrounded by stunning scenery - before returning to Füssen.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5 – To Passau where we board our luxurious ship

After breakfast this morning, we journey by coach to Passau where our luxurious ship awaits us. We're welcomed onboard by our friendly crew and a refreshing cocktail in the lounge. After settling into your wonderful cabin and familiarising yourself with our magnificent ship, we indulge in our first dinner on board, setting sail into the serene and meandering Danube river.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 6 - Picturesque Melk Abbey, beautiful Wachau Valley and charming Dürnstein

This morning we visit Melk Abbey, an 11th-century Benedictine Abbey that stands atop a rocky outcrop overlooking the Danube. It's here we see the abbey's church, one of the most beautiful Baroque churches north of the Alps.

After lunch, we cruise through the scenery of the Wachau Valley, truly a highlight of the river. This scenic area of green valleys and vineyards is dotted with picturesque riverside towns and commanding fortresses.

Austria's Wachau Valley is a famous wine-making region, which makes it the perfect stop on our cruise to sample the renowned local wine. There's free time in the quaint village of Dürnstein to do just that, or simply wander the charming streets, soaking up the fairytale landscapes. This village is also home to the renowned castle where Richard I of England was imprisoned for a time and we get a great view of it from the riverside.

After dinner back onboard, a real treat awaits us in the lounge tonight. As we sail into the magnificent city of Vienna, we're joined by four past members of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra who whisk us away with their performances of well-known classical pieces.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7 - Discovering the magic of Vienna

Vienna beckons today with its grandeur and elegance and we head into the city for a guided tour. This is a chance to relish in Austria's Imperial culture, one full of tradition and rich in architectural, artistic and musical heritage. With our expert guide, we visit the illustrious Ringstrasse boulevard. Here, we see many of Vienna's most ornate buildings including the world-renowned Opera House, where the greatest singers of our time have graced the stage, and the imposing Parliament Building.

After our inspiring tour, there's time to explore the city at leisure. The city's vibrant energy is infectious, and it's easy to lose yourself in the magnificent atmosphere. Wander through the city centre and marvel at the striking St. Stephen's Cathedral, or delve into one of the countless museums that bring the city's history to life. You could also indulge in the famous Sacher Torte, a Viennese delight, at one of the cosy coffee shops. During dinner this evening, we begin our overnight sail toward Budapest.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8 – Striking Budapest

We arrive in glorious Budapest after breakfast and this afternoon, we're introduced to the beauty and history on a sightseeing tour of this captivating city. Known as the 'Pearl of the Danube', Budapest has plenty of impressive buildings and monuments on both sides of the river. From the State Opera House and St Stephen's Basilica to Matthias Church and Fisherman's Bastion, each sight is more remarkable than the last. After dinner back on board this evening, we enjoy the enchanting ambience of a traditional Hungarian Folklore troupe.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9 – The beautiful Danube Bend

After a morning at leisure in Budapest with time to wander and explore, we begin cruising to Bratislava after lunch. Relax onboard as we navigate the scenic Danube bend, passing the village of Visegrad famous for its dramatic hilltop castle and the town of Esztergom, the former capital of Hungary. We continue cruising by the delightful landscapes of the Danube for the rest of the day.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 10 - Glorious Bratislava

This morning we arrive in the enchanting and historic Slovakian capital of Bratislava, welcomed by its castle overlooking the river. We set out on a fascinating guided tour after lunch. Bratislava is divided neatly into two parts by the waters of the Danube, and we have time to get to know both the Baroque Old Town and the newer city.

As we explore the enchanting streets, we're immersed in the vibrancy of the city, which has dramatic historic buildings, Baroque palaces and a wealth of fantastic museums and galleries. Later this afternoon we continue sailing upstream.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 11 – Lovely Linz

After a relaxed morning of cruising, we arrive into Linz this afternoon. The town is known for its gorgeous old town as well as its mix of baroque and modern architecture. On a guided tour, we discover the charming Main Square, explore the quaint old town with its historic architecture, and stroll through the serene City Park. The rest of our day is at leisure and you can experience Linz's vibrant atmosphere at your own pace. This evening we enjoy a Gala dinner on board, as we begin our final cruise towards Passau.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 12 – Homeward bound

It's time to bid farewell to our lovely crew this morning as we disembark in Passau. Heading to the station, we journey by rail to London. Here, we say goodbye to our fellow travellers, leaving with new memories of our wonderful cruise.

Includes
  • Breakfast

Additional information

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.

Trains

Eurostar
Zugspitze Railway

Ship

MS Amadeus Imperial

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