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Balkan Discovery 2020

9 days with Avalon Waterways  Rating: Deluxe

Book this River Cruise Now and Save!


  • Save $500 to $1,500 per couple off this cruise. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Pay no single supplement in certain cabin categories on select river cruises. Limited availability on each departure. Expires February 19. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Travel with Avalon Waterways in 2019 or later and receive a Welcome Back Credit of $100 to $250 per person after your trip. The credit can be applied toward a subsequent trip with Avalon Waterways or its sister brands Globus, Cosmos and Monograms. Click here for eligible departures.

Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability is limited. Some discounts are not combinable.

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 BUDAPEST, HUNGARY (EMBARKATION)
Welcome to Hungary. Your Suite Ship® is Ready for Boarding.

Flights into Budapest must arrive by 2 pm.

Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MOHÁCS (D)

Day 2 MOHÁCS
Archaeology, Architecture, and an Ancient Watermill

CLASSIC Join a morning Guided Sightseeing Tour of Mohács—the quiet Danube harbor town with its historical memorial parks, statues, and distinctive churches. Tour the remarkable medieval St. Nicholas Watermill—one of only a few remaining watermills performing stone-ground grain processing, OR:

CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of nearby Pécs to see its 4th-century Christian underground tombs, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with fascinating murals. You’ll also enjoy an organ concert on your tour.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO OSIJEK (B,L,D)

Day 3 OSIJEK, CROATIA
History and Culture of Croatia

CLASSIC Join a morning Guided Walking Tour of the city of Osijek, located at the confluence of the Danube and Drava Rivers. Visit Tvrda, the most well preserved fortress of Croatia, home of many educational institutions.

DISCOVERY Attend a musical concert performed by the talented young artists of the music school of Osijek at Franjo Kuhac.

This afternoon you might join a Guided Optional Excursion to the famous marshland area of Kopacki rit, where you can choose among multiple activities such as fishing, biking or canoeing.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BELGRADE (B,L,D)

Day 4 BELGRADE, SERBIA
Fortresses and Folklore of Serbia Past and Present

CLASSIC Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Belgrade—where the Danube and Sava Rivers converge—and see the city’s many fascinating sights, including Saint Sava—one of the world’s largest Orthodox churches.

DISCOVERY Attend an onboard Lecture to learn about the rich history, destinations, and culture of the Balkan states.

Spend your free time exploring the city on your own this afternoon on Knez Mihailova Street—Belgrade’s central pedestrian thoroughfare with many lively cafés, shops, and cultural spots.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board your ship before dinner.

This evening, you might like to join an Optional authentic Bohemian Dinner in the Quarter of Skadarlija.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO DONJI MILANOVAC (B,L,D)

Day 5 DONJI MILANOVAC. EXCURSION TO LEPENSKI VIR—IRON GATES GORGE
Ancient Art, Archaeological Artifacts, and Gauntlet of the Iron Gates

CLASSIC Join a Guided Tour to Lepenski Vir—an important Mesolithic archaeological site chronicling prehistoric cultures, settlements, and art. Marvel at the ancient discoveries and artifacts, as well as the unique views the site affords of the Danube Gorge.

After lunch on board, you’ll sail through the spectacular and narrow Iron Gates Gorge—a natural border between Serbia and Romania.

AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VIDIN (B,L,D)

Day 6 VIDIN, BULGARIA
Rocks and Ruins—Things of Beauty in Bulgaria

CLASSIC Join Guided Sightseeing in Vidin, followed by a Guided Tour of Belogradchik. Marvel at the remarkable rock formations on the western slopes of the Balkan Mountains, sculpted by 200 million years of natural elements.

AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO ROUSSE (B,L,D)

Day 7 ROUSSE. VELIKO TÂRNOVO & ARBANASSI EXCURSION
Cliff Houses, Castle Ruins, Fortresses, and Folklore

CLASSIC Join a full-day Guided Tour to the former Bulgarian capital of Veliko Târnovo—with its ancient stone houses clinging to the cliffs above the Yantra River. Discover one of the oldest towns in Bulgaria (circa 4300 BC), as well as the Bulgarian Revival architecture in the 15th-century town of Arbanassi, OR:

CLASSIC Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Bulgaria’s largest inland port and visit its impressive Holy Trinity Church, OR:

ACTIVE Join a Jog through the park with your Avalon Adventure Host.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board with a Bulgarian folklore show.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO OLTENITA (B,L,D)

Day 8 OLTENITA, ROMANIA (DISEMBARKATION)—BUCHAREST
A Night in Bucharest—the “Paris of the East”

CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of the Romanian capital city of Bucharest with its tree-lined boulevards and Arc de Triomphe—honoring WWI Romanian soldiers. See the Royal Palace Square—the scene of the city’s 1989 riots to overthrow the communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.

Spend some free time exploring this fascinating city on your own to discover its trendy shops, cafés, museums, beautiful homes, and churches along Victory Avenue. (B)

Day 9 BUCHAREST
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • Day 1 Budapest (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception
  • Day 2 Mohács. Excursion to Pécs: choice of guided tour in Pécs, visit the underground tombs, or sightseeing in Mohács, visit St. Nicolas watermill
  • Day 3 Osijek: guided tour
  • Day 4 Belgrade: guided tour; lecture on board
  • Day 5 Donji Milanovac—Iron Gates: visit Lepenski Vir archaeological site; scenic cruise through the dramatic Iron Gates gorge
  • Day 6 Vidin. Excursion to Belogradchik: guided tour in Vidin, excursion to Belogradchik, see the rock formations
  • Day 7 Excursion to Veliko Tarnovo and Arbanassi—Rousse: choice of full day guided sightseeing, visit Tsarevet’s Fortress in Veliko Târnovo and the Ethnographical Museum and Church of the Nativity in Arbanassi; or guided sightseeing, or jogging tour in Rousse
  • Day 8 Oltenita (Disembarkation)—Bucharest: guided sightseeing in Bucharest
  • Day 9 Bucharest: your vacation ends this morning
All This Included
Expect outstanding views on your Danube River cruise from Hungary to Romania! Begin in the Hungarian capital of Budapest, and tour the historic towns of Mohács and Pécs. Sail through rich cultures and remarkable landscapes of the Balkan States of Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, and Romania.

Visit the most preserved Croatian fortress in Osijek, and attend a performance by young students of the Franjo Kuhac music school. In Serbia, take a guided tour of Belgrade, including one of the world’s largest Orthodox churches, and visit Lepenski Vir for a guided tour. See ancient archaeological finds and the amazing Danube Gorge before cruising through the narrow Iron Gates Gorge—the natural border between Serbia and Romania. You’ll cruise through Bulgaria with guided sightseeing in Vidin, Rousse, Veliko Târnovo, and Arbanassi. Such marvelous sights include Belogradchik’s remarkable rock formations made by 200 million years of nature’s elements; ancient stone cliff houses above the Yantra River; and Bucharest’s Royal Palace Square and Romanian soldier remembrances. Your Danube River cruise concludes here in Bucharest for an overnight stay in “The Paris of the East.”

Ship Amenities:
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows
  • Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs, whirlpool, shade awnings, & outdoor deck game area
  • State-of-the-art fitness center
  • Non-smoking staterooms & ship interior
  • Convenient Elevator Service
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Outside viewing deck
  • Headsets for guided shore excursions in Europe
  • English-speaking friendly crew, staff & professional Cruise Director
  • Sightseeing with Expert Local Guides
  • Onboard lectures, activities & entertainment
  • Room service for Continental breakfast & beverages (service fee applies)
  • Sky Deck whirlpool
  • Complimentary computer use in public areas
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Biking excursions available in Amsterdam and Breisach
  • Onboard Adventure Center with active gear, bikes, Nordic walking sticks, watercraft & maps
  • Light lunch & casual dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Avalon Choice® cruising experience
  • Behind-the-scenes galley tour
  • Choice of Leisurely, Traditional or Independent sightseeing pace options
  • Nordic walking sticks available onboard for complimentary check-out
  • Onshore & Onboard experiences with regional customs, cultures & tastings with local artisans, experts & entertainers
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Onboard assistance is available to recommend, reserve and further personalize your cruise
  • Linger over several selections from the Panorama Bistro's tasting menu for a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere
  • Sky Deck game area
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, including decaf options
  • Well-stocked library with books, cards, and board games
  • Complimentary bottled water, fresh fruit, and cookies available throughout the day
  • Full-size closet mirror
Ship Dining
  • Avalon FreshSM healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, including decaf options
  • Welcome & farewell cocktails with sparkling wine & canapés
  • Welcome dinner
  • Five-course farewell dinner
  • Spacious, open-seating dining room
  • Daily early-riser breakfast
  • Daily late-riser breakfast
  • Full buffet breakfast with sparkling wine and made-to-order egg station
  • Lunch buffet with carving and pasta stations
  • Al fresco lunch in the Sky Grill
  • Cocktails with a view on the Sky Deck
  • Healthy Corner options including low calorie, low fat, high fiber, low cholesterol, and high energy choices
  • Vegetarian options at every meal, as well as vegan and allergy-free selections
  • Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, and sweet treats
  • Happy Hour every evening including featured drink specials
  • Seasonal cuisine featuring the freshest local ingredients
  • Chef-prepared onboard meals with regional cuisine and familiar favorites
  • Four-course dinners with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrées and desserts or cheese
  • Complimentary wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Room service for Continental breakfast & beverages (service fee applies)
  • Panorama Lounge & Bar with premium spirits, cozy seating, panoramic windows & dance floor
  • Night Fare served at 10:30 pm
  • Healthy meal options
  • Light lunch & casual dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Linger over several selections from the Panorama Bistro's tasting menu for a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere
  • Tastings - sample the destination's famous delicacies
  • Coffee or tea after dinner
Accommodations on this Tour
Cabin onboard Avalon Artistry II, Avalon Passion
Bucharest: Athenee Palace Hilton 
Pre and Post Add-ons
Extra nights per person in Bucharest:
in single room from $153 to $394, in twin room from $85 to $217
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • In the event of technical or water level issues, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or alter the program, including hotel overnight when necessary.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • Port charges: $182
  • Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.



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