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Our river cruises > Europe (multi-country) > Christmas Markets of Europe

Christmas Markets of Europe

15 Day
Between Budapest and Amsterdam
Rhine, Danube, Main
From * £3,695
£3,245
Departing 29 November 2017
Call to book
0161 233 1983
Christmas Markets of Europe  - 15 day
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Truly immerse yourself in the spirit of the holidays by exploring Europe’s traditional Christmas markets. Navigating the width of Germany, the spiritual home of Christmas markets; the Emerald Waterways Christmas Markets of Europe cruise provides plenty of opportunity to stock up on presents for loved ones back home and sample traditional fare. Hand-crafted gifts and delightful dishes following recipes passed down from generation to generation can be found in the plentiful wooden stalls erected at this time of year. Warm up with a mug of mulled wine as beautiful crisp snowfall descends from overhead. In between port visits, the Rhine takes on a wonderful new personality in the winter months, with snow-capped hill ranges emerging around the valleys through which we’ll navigate.
 

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Day 1

Welcome to Budapest. Transfer from the airport to your luxury Emerald Waterways river cruise ship where a warm welcome awaits you from your Captain and crew. This evening join your fellow travellers for a welcome cocktail reception followed by a night-time cruise along the Danube, whilst enjoying a traditional Hungarian welcome dinner complete with folk dancing and music.

Meals included: Dinner
Day 2
Budapest

Budapest is Eastern Europe’s liveliest and most cosmopolitan city. Enjoy a guided tour of the city sights including the Royal Palace of Buda, hilltop castle complex with Fisherman’s Bastion, the Matthias Church, and the Chain Bridge linking Buda and Pest. This afternoon you have free time before departing for Bratislava

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 3
Bratislava

This morning we arrive at the city of Bratislava, capital of the Republic of Slovakia. Enjoy a sightseeing tour including the enchanting Old City with its Town Hall, Mirbach Palace and the Gothic Cathedral of St Martin. EmeraldPLUS: The highlight will be a home hosted afternoon tea with a local Slovakian family.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4
Vienna

Today we explore Austria’s capital beginning with a drive along the Ringstrasse, where we will see Vienna’s world-famous Opera House, Burgtheatre, Spanish Riding School, Town Hall, St. Stephen’s Cathedral and the Hofburg Imperial Palace. Then you have free time to sample the wonderful Christmas Markets of Vienna which are set up in 15 different squares in the city.

Discover More: Exclusive Viennese concert with music from Mozart and Strauss and/or Schönbrunn Palace tour (extra expense)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5
Dürnstein - Melk

In the morning we arrive in Dürnstein, one of the most enchanting villages of the Wachau wine region. Later, drive through the picturesque landscape of this district to the 900-year old Benedictine Abbey of Melk, which features Austria’s finest Italian baroque architecture. Emerald Active: Guided bike tour.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6
Passau

Cruise along the Danube this morning, in the afternoon we reach Passau. Stroll through the old town’s narrow alleys and see the hilltop Oberhaus Fortress from the town below.

Discover More: Full Day Trips to Salzburg or Cesky Krumlov (extra expense)

*** Please note, you can only choose either Salzburg or Ceský as both Discover More tours run at the same time, also that passengers on this tour will not be able to participate on the included walking tour of Passau

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7
Regensburg - Kelheim

After breakfast we arrive in magnificent Regensburg. On our guided walking tour you’ll have the chance to see one of the oldest bridges crossing the Danube and see the city’s architectural highlights including the Old Town Hall. EmeraldPLUS: Tonight, enjoy a Bavarian Band on board.

Discover More: Local brauhaus excursion (extra expense)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8
Nuremberg

Enjoy a sightseeing tour of the historic city of Nuremberg. See the storybook 900-year-old ramparts, the Imperial Castle and the Justice Palace or head to the Nazi party rally grounds. Nuremburg is also known for its Christmas market squares which you can visit in your free time. EmeraldPLUS: This evening enjoy a lecture given by your cruise director.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9
Bamberg

Boasting one of Europe’s largest intact medieval town centres, Bamberg is bursting with original character and charm. Feel the magic of the past as you explore this UNESCO World Heritage city with your guide today and enjoy the local Christmas market.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 10
Würzburg

Known as the “Pearl of the Romantic Road”, Würzburg is surrounded by sloping hills covered with vineyards. Join our guide for a walking tour followed by a visit to the Bishops’ Residenz, one of Germany’s largest and most ornate baroque palaces and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Discover More: Rothenburg, a perfectly preserved fortified town (extra expense)

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 11
Miltenberg

Travel to the picturesque village of Miltenberg on the Main River. The village creates an imitable feeling of Bavarian life in the middle ages and the Old Town is lined with well-preserved half-timbered buildings. Enjoy a guided tour of Miltenberg and free time, also an opportunity to join Emerald Active, with a guided hike to Wertheim Castle (active fitness level; weather dependent).

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 12
Rüdesheim - Koblenz

After breakfast arrive at Rüdesheim, one of Germany’s most popular towns and enjoy free time to explore. Today’s cruising will be a highlight of your trip, as we cruise through the spectacular Rhine Gorge. In the early evening we arrive into the beautiful 2,000 year old town of Koblenz.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 13
Koblenz - Cologne

The ship sails from Koblenz in the early morning, cruising along the Rhine we arrive in Cologne. Cologne’s Christmas markets are in all the city squares. This evening the captain will be delighted to welcome you to the Captain’s Gala Dinner.

Discover More: Take a tour to Drachenburg Castle (extra expense & must be pre booked) with guided tour of Cologne afterwards.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 14
Cruising - Amsterdam

The ship sails along the Amsterdam Rijnkanaal and into Amsterdam. Join a glass top canal boat cruise and explore Amsterdam’s maze of canals. Also enjoy an orientation tour of Amsterdam or why not join Emerald Active for a city guided walking tour before free time in the afternoon. This evening join your fellow travellers for a farewell dinner.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 15
Disembarkation Amsterdam

After breakfast, this morning you will be transferred to the airport for your onward or home bound flight.

Meals included: Breakfast
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