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An iconic glass-top canal boat cruise in Amsterdam marks the beginning of this wonderful itinerary through the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary. Promising natural beauty, medieval towns and hikes to hilltop fortresses, four capital cities offer a unique insight into the region’s past, present and future.

  • 14 nights on board an Emerald Cruises Star-Ship
  • Airport transfers to and from the ship
  • Dining Highlights:
    -41 superb meals including 14 Breakfasts (B), 13 Lunches (L), 14 Dinners (D)
    -Including a Welcome and Farewell Reception & Dinner
    -Complimentary wine, beer and soft drinks served with lunch and dinner on board
  • The services of an Emerald Cruises Cruise Director
  • Port taxes and charges
  • All tipping and gratuities
  • Included Excursions
    -Canal cruise in Amsterdam
    -Guided tour of Cologne’s Old TownVisit to Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Museum
    -Guided Tour of Miltenberg
    -Walking tour of Wurzburg & Visit to UNESCO World Heritage-listed Bishop Residence
    -Guided Tour of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Bamberg
    -Guided tour of Nuremberg
    -Guided tour of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Regensburg
    -Guided tour of Passau
    -Tour of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Melk Abbey
    -Guided tour of Vienna
    -Walking tour of Bratislava
    -Guided coach tour of Budapest
    -EmeraldPLUS: Traditional Bavarian band performance on board
    -EmeraldPLUS: Home-hosted coffee and cake with a Slovakian family
    -EmeraldPLUS: Hungarian folklore show performance on board
    -EmeraldACTIVE: Guided bike tour to Waterland
    -EmeraldACTIVE: Active walk through vineyards in Rüdesheim
    -EmeraldACTIVE: Active Wwalk to Mildenburg Castle
    -EmeraldACTIVE: A guided bike tour along the Danube River
    -EmeraldACTIVE: Guided hike to Dürnstein Castle
    -EmeraldACTIVE: Guided bike tour in Vienna
    -EmeraldACTIVE: Guided hike to Bratislava castle
    -EmeraldACTIVE: Hike to Buda Hill
  • Book by Jul 31!
Cruise Only October 14 or 22, 2022 *Early Payment Discount
Emerald Stateroom $7345 $5945 $7345 $5578
Panorama Balcony Suite $8995 $7595 $8995 $7145
Taxes & Fees $780 $780

*Early Payment Discount: Save an extra 5% if paid in full at the time of booking.

Book with Confidence: Change or cancel 60 days prior to travel. The value of the booking will be applied as a Future Travel Credit (FTC) which is valid for 24 months.


Amsterdam to Budapest: July 30, October 14, or 22, 2022 (itinerary below)
Budapest to Amsterdam: July 23 or 24, 2022 (reversed itinerary)

Day 1 Amsterdam (D)
Welcome to Amsterdam, a postcard-worthy destination of picturesque canals, cafés and innovative galleries that showcase contemporary art and the works of world-renowned artists, like van Gogh and Rembrandt.

You will be met and transferred from the airport to your luxurious Emerald Cruises Star-Ship and, after boarding, will enjoy some time to explore the narrow-cobbled streets and gabled houses of Amsterdam at leisure.

This evening, join your fellow guests for dinner on board.

Day 2 Amsterdam (B,L,D)
This morning, you can decide to explore the Dutch Golden Age as you board a glass top canal boat cruise to explore the UNESCO World Heritage-listed canal system or enjoy a guided bike tour to Waterland.

Both excellent ways to experience the city in all its authenticity, take to its charming waterways, passing iconic buildings and elegant merchant’s residences that reflect a time when Amsterdam was one of the most lucrative ports in the world. If you are feeling more active, then explore on two wheels, cycling alongside a backdrop of historical villages and traditional windmills.

Upon returning to your ship, your first day of sailing will take you through the Dutch countryside to the Rhine River.

A guided bike tour to Waterland

Included Excursion
A canal cruise

Haarlem Discovery Visit

Floriade Expo Visit (extra expense)

Day 3 Cologne (B,L,D)
Founded by the Romans in 50 AD, the cathedral city of Cologne is one of the oldest cities in Germany and the largest on the Rhine. The historic capital of the Rhineland, this illustrious city has been generously peppered with ancient architecture, from Roman ruins to medieval structures, despite much of the inner city being completely destroyed during WWII.

Join your local guide and explore the city, including the Old Town with its beautiful squares, historic monuments and contemporary architecture. Your tour will conclude at the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Cologne Cathedral, whose filigree twin towers form an iconic part of the skyline. During your free time, shop for trinkets or explore further before returning to your ship.

Included Excursion
A guided tour of Cologne’s Old Town

Day 4 Rüdesheim (B,L,D)
Today’s cruising will be a highlight of your trip, as we meander through the fairytale-like surrounds of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Rhine Gorge. Hilltop castles and fortresses will be yours to admire as we sail.

We will pass the infamous Lorelai Rock, where sailors are said to have been lured onto treacherous rocks by an enchanting siren, and the impressive Pfalzgrafenstein Castle, a former stronghold.

This afternoon, arrive in Rüdesheim, a town with a vibrant wine-growing heritage. You will have a choice of either riding on the Winzerexpress and visiting Siegfried’s Mechanical Music Cabinet Museum or, if you feel active, take an active walk through a local vineyard to explore this section of the Rheingau wine region.

An active walk through the vineyards

Included Excursion
Visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Music Cabinet Museum

Day 5 Miltenberg – Wertheim (B,L,D)
Welcome to Miltenberg, a picturesque village on the Main River, which creates an inimitable feeling of Bavarian life in medieval times due to the 15th-century half-timbered buildings.

On your included walking tour, stroll down cobblestone streets that are lined with these colourful houses and view the Gothic Merchant Hall, an impressive symbol of past affluence created by trade from river traffic.

Alternatively, enjoy an active walk through the forest to Mildenburg Castle. This iconic landmark was once lost to time and now houses a wonderful collection of contemporary art and old masters.

An active walk to Mildenburg Castle

Included Excursion
A guided tour of Miltenberg

Vineyard visit & Franconian wine (extra expense)

Day 6 Würzburg (B,L,D)
Known as the “Pearl of the Romantic Road”, Würzburg, is a centre for grape-growing, the product of the sloping vineyard-laden hills which surround the former capital of Franconia.

The architects behind the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Würzburg Residence drew inspiration from a spectrum of different styles, including Viennese Baroque and secular features from Italy, but it was heavily damaged during WWII. Enjoy learning about how this impressive building was restored to its former glory with a guided tour.

Included Excursion
A walking tour of Würzburg and visit to the Bishop Residence

Excursion to Rothenburg (extra expense)

Day 7 Bamberg (B,L,D)
This morning, relax on the Sun Deck with a drink in hand or witness the beauty of Europe’s waterways from the plush surrounds of your cabin as we cruise to Bamberg. The UNESCO World Heritage-listed town boasts one of the largest medieval centres in Europe, with around 2,400 listed buildings gracing its streets.

Feel the magic of the past as you explore the city with your local guide, marvelling at the opulence of the New Residence, once resided in by the prince bishops and now home to a plethora of old German and Baroque paintings from the Bavarian State collection. Enjoy a tranquil stroll around the Rose Garden.

Included Excursion
A guided tour of Bamberg

Day 8 Nuremberg (B,L,D)
Your included excursion today is a sightseeing tour of the historic city of Nuremberg, touching on the architectural wonders that have inspired famous artists for centuries and exploring the effects that the war years had.

After your tour, enjoy time to explore Nuremberg at leisure, passing half-timbered houses that were beautifully reconstructed following the war.

Included Excursion
A guided tour of Nuremberg

A World War II tour (extra expense)

Day 9 Kelheim – Regensburg (B,L,D)
This morning, you’ll sail the final stretch of the fascinating Main-Danube Canal to Regensburg. As you continue sailing down the Danube, one of Germany’s best-preserved medieval cities welcomes you with two millennia of history.

For almost 150 years, the Old Town Hall was the seat of parliament and, dating back to the 13th century, it consists of the Town Hall Tower, the Imperial Chamber building and the Town Hall. Wander the streets with your guide as the romantic narrow alleys of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Old Town enable you to live through the city’s history, in the present.

The main highlight of your tour will be the 12th-century Stone Bridge, a medieval structure crossing the Danube. Enjoy time to explore Regensburg at leisure after your guided tour or return to your Star-Ship.

Tonight, enjoy a traditional Bavarian band performance on board.

A Bavarian band performance

Included Excursion
A guided tour of Regensburg

Visit to a local brewery (extra expense)

Day 10 Passau (B,L,D)
Passau is a picturesque city that has been shaped by the surrounding rivers over the years, sitting right on the confluence of the Danube, Inn and Ilz. This memorable destination is dominated by large squares, magical promenades and romantic lanes.

Cobblestone streets and graceful arcades welcome you in the beautiful city of Passau. On this morning’s walking tour, stroll through streets lined by Baroque buildings dating back to the 17th century and look at the Gothic Town Hall, Bishop’s Residence and St. Stephen’s Cathedral, a wonderful example of Baroque architecture and home to the largest church organ in Europe.

Return for lunch on board and an afternoon peacefully cruising along the Danube.

Included Excursion
A guided tour of Passau

Excursion to Salzburg (extra expense)

Excursion to Ceský Krumlov (extra expense)

Day 11 Melk – Dürnstein (B,L,D)
Situated within Austria’s wine-growing region, Melk is home to a 900-year-old Benedictine abbey, a UNESCO World Heritage-listed site, which is yours to explore today during an included tour. Your guide will take you through a series of opulent rooms, each adorned with the finest Italian Baroque architecture and ornate gold leaf walls, including the ancient monastic library, renowned for its extensive collection of medieval manuscripts.

Later, the Star-Ship sails through the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Wachau Valley and on to Dürnstein, one of the most enchanting villages in the Wachau wine region, where you can choose to hike to Dürnstein Castle, the site where Richard the Lionheart was imprisoned after returning from the Crusades.

Alternatively, enjoy an EmeraldACTIVE guided bike ride along the Danube from Melk to Dürnstein, passing famous vineyards and quaint towns before settling down for a picnic lunch on the riverbanks.

A guided bike tour along the Danube

A guided hike to Dürnstein Castle

Included Excursion
A tour of Melk Abbey

Vineyards hike & tasting in Weissenkirchen (extra expense)

Day 12 Vienna (B,L,D)
Austria’s breath-taking capital is recognised for its cultural legacy. As the former residence of Mozart and Beethoven, a multitude of imperial palaces represent a rich history, and the museum district boasts contemporary buildings, housing the work of some of the world’s most prolific artists.

Explore the famous sights of the Ringstrasse and Vienna’s city centre by coach and on foot, or join a guided bike tour. Marvel at the Renaissance-style arches that adorn the façades of the Opera House, the Baroque Burgtheater and the Flemish Gothic Parliament before enjoying time to explore Vienna at leisure.

A guided bike tour

Included Excursion
A guided tour of Vienna

Viennese evening concert (extra expense)

A visit to Schönbrunn Palace (extra expense)

Day 13 Bratislava (B,L,D)
Set at the crossroads of ancient trade routes in the heart of Europe, Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia, is a place where Baroque palaces, boutiques and cafés adorn cobblestone streets. In the morning, enjoy a sightseeing tour, including the enchanting Old City or hike to Bratislava Castle.

Your local guide will take you through the heart of the city. Pass by the botanical gardens of the Episcopal Summer Palace, the Old Town Hall and its delightful Renaissance courtyard and the Slovak National Theatre, where busts of famous composers adorn the façade. After your tour, enjoy free time to explore at leisure.

This afternoon, a local family will be happy to welcome you into their home for some great conversation over traditional sweet treats and coffee.

Home-hosted coffee and cake with a Slovakian family

A guided hike to Bratislava Castle

Included Excursion
A walking tour of Bratislava

Skoda Tour of Post-Communist Bratislava (extra expense)

Day 14 Budapest (B,L,D)
Budapest is Eastern Europe’s liveliest and most cosmopolitan city. Divided by the iconic Danube River, Buda and Pest on either side can be reached via the Chain Bridge, one of the city’s most symbolic structures.

Enjoy a guided tour of the city with your local guide this morning. Alternatively, embark on a hike to Buda Hill, traversing winding cobblestone streets underneath the massive Baroque masterpiece that is Buda Castle.

This evening, you will enjoy a Hungarian folklore show before your farewell dinner.

Traditional Hungarian folklore show

A hike to Buda Hill

Included Excursion
A guided coach tour of Budapest

Excursion to Szentendre (extra expense)

Jewish Heritage tour (extra expense)

Day 15 Budapest (B)
After breakfast, it is time to say farewell to your fellow guests and disembark the ship for your transfer to the airport for your onward or homebound flight, taking memories of the delightful Danube 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.

Optional Tour Add Ons

Wurzburg: Excursion to Rothenburg $71 per person
Vienna: Visit to Schönbrunn Palace $84 per person
Excursion to Cesky Krumlov $104 per person
Excursion to Salzburg $104 per person
Vienna (Evening): Viennese Evening Concert $109 per person
Bratislava: Skoda Tour of Post-Communist Bratislava (MUST BE PRE-BOOKED) $133 per person
Melk: Vineyards hike & tasting in Weissenkirchen $84 per person
Regensburg: Visit to a local brewery $83 per person
Nuremberg: World War II tour (MUST BE PRE- BOOKED) $70 per person
Haarlem Discovery Visit (MUST BE PRE-BOOKED) $68 per person
Floriade Expo visit (MUST BE PRE-BOOKED) $144 per person
Miltenberg: Vineyard visit & Franconian wine $107 per person

From the moment you book your holiday with Emerald Cruises, we want you to feel the benefit of our award-winning service and exceptional EmeraldVALUE. That’s why we’ve created our Book with Confidence Assurance to give you complete peace of mind when booking your next getaway with us.

Terms and conditions: Flexible Booking Policy: To ensure guests can book with confidence, for all new 2022/2023 bookings Emerald Cruises is including a Flexible Booking Policy which allows guests to defer travel and transfer to an alternate departure or itinerary or cancel up to 60 days prior to travel, with no Emerald Cruises fees (3rd party fees may apply). For cancellations, the value of the booking will be applied as a Future Travel Credit (FTC) which is valid for 24 months. This flexible booking and cancellation policy excludes Russia. Please note, final payment due date will remain as per booking conditions; however, this flexible policy allows changes to be made up to 60 days prior to travel.

Terms & Conditions

All rates are per person, based on double occupancy in Canadian dollars (unless otherwise stated) New bookings only. Space and price may be limited and subject to availability at the time of booking.  Errors or omissions may occur on the above information with no guarantee of being honoured. Terms and conditions apply. Tax is not included in the above base fare. Above tax amount includes non-refundable $30 per adult Booking Management Fee. $50 per adult cancellation fee. Not included in the above rates: Xpresspost fee, recommended medical, cancellation or baggage insurance. Child rate is applicable when travelling with 2 paying adults sharing 1 hotel room, using the existing bedding. Price Match Policy: Travel Best Bets makes every effort to remain competitive by offering our ‘Match or Beat Any Price’ offer however due to certain restrictions  there will be some product we cannot match or beat. Please note the star ratings found on www.travelbestbets.com are determined by Travel Best Bets based on a number of factors and may not match the star rating found in the Tour Operator’s brochure. Please view our star ratings by clicking here. Due to an increasing volume of disputed bookings, we will only accept payment for air only travel to India, the Philippines and the continent of Africa through the following means: book and pay cash in person or by direct deposit into our business account – once the transaction is verified and a copy of the receipt emailed or faxed to our office, we will confirm the booking. Please contact us for details on how to book using this method.Please note there maybe a tax increase when FREE connectors are added with Air Canada Vacations. Please contact [email protected] for photo credit information. BPCPA #3287