16 Day Classic European River Cruise 2021 (Amsterdam to Budapest, Monarch Countess)
16 days with Gate 1 Rating: Deluxe
River Cruise Itinerary
DAY 1, Saturday - Depart for the Netherlands Depart for the Netherlands.
DAY 2, Sunday - Arrive in Amsterdam Welcome to Amsterdam, Holland's sophisticated and modern capital. After arrival formalities, rest and relax on board, or begin your discovery of the many cultural sites this city has to offer. This evening, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise. (Dinner)
DAY 3, Monday - Amsterdam City Tour Today's panoramic tour of 700-year-old Amsterdam introduces you to both the old and the new sections of this city. View the Royal Palace on Amsterdam's Dam Square, the Queen's official home-away-from-home. On to the Dutch National Monument dedicated by Queen Juliana as a memorial to the victims of WWII and to the unusual Skinny Bridge, once so narrow that pedestrians could not pass each other. Then, board a glass-top boat and cruise the winding canals for an up-close view of the stately historic homes, 16th-century warehouses and charming churches with striking bell towers. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 4, Tuesday - Cologne City Tour Today join a walking tour of Cologne, highlighted by the soaring twin-steeple Gothic cathedral that is the geographical and spiritual heart of the city. Known for its vibrant art scene, Cologne abounds with cafes, galleries, shops and taverns. After dinner on board, time to explore Cologne's vibrant night life before setting sail. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 5, Wednesday - Morning in Koblenz & Afternoon Cruising The ship docks this morning in Koblenz, located at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers. Join an orientation walk this morning and free time to explore the Romanesque architecture and imposing defensive towers of this 2000-year old city. Or, join the optional tour to the dramatic Marksburg Castle, the only hill castle on the Rhine that's never been destroyed and has been continuously occupied for over 700 years. During lunch, set sail and enjoy a relaxing afternoon on board, taking in the spectacular vistas as the ship sails past castles perched on lofty cliffs, terraced vineyards and tiny villages. Pass the mighty Lorelei Rock on the eastern bank of the Rhine rising vertically from the waters, named for the siren "Lorelei" who bewitched sailors passing by. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Marksburg Castle Tour
DAY 6, Thursday - Miltenberg Walking Tour After a leisurely morning on board, arrive in the picturesque Bavarian village of Miltenberg, a jewel on the banks of the Main River. Discover the Market Square with its Renaissance-era fountain, the Merchant Hall with its stunning Gothic architecture and the unique 14th and 15th century half-timbered houses. Rejoin the ship just before dinner and set sail for Wurzburg. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 7, Friday - Wurzburg City Tour Discovery Wurzburg, named the "Pearl of the Romantic Road," with its dramatic Marienberg fortress, 15th century bridge and lush vineyards. Your tour takes you to the ornate Bishops' Residenz Palace, a stunning example of Baroque architecture, home to the largest ceiling fresco ever painted, named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This afternoon, relax on aboard as the ship cruises, or join the optional tour along Germany's "Romantic Road" to Rothenburg, with its turreted city wall and impressive Gothic architecture. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Rothenburg City Tour
DAY 8, Saturday - Bamberg City Tour Today, dock in historic Bamberg, former residence of one of Germany's most powerful imperial dynasties and today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Begin your walk in the medieval city center with its impressive 11th century Romanesque cathedral and gorgeous Rose Garden. After, view the very unusual City Hall built on a tiny island in the middle of the Regnitz River and Little Venice, an area of colorful fishermen's houses. This afternoon is free to explore Bamberg independently, before setting sail this evening while you dine on board. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 9, Sunday - Nuremberg City Tour Today explore Nuremberg, an energetic city with a visible history of almost one thousand years. The guided excursion visits the historic Palace of Justice where the War Crimes Tribunal met in 1946 and continues to the vibrant Market Square. After lunch on board the ship, the afternoon is free to further discover this wonderful city on your own. Stroll through the shops that fill the Old Town or walk along the fortified walls of Nuremberg Castle. In the late afternoon set sail for Regensburg. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 10, Monday - Regensburg City Tour This morning relax on board as the ship cruises the Danube River. Arrive to Regensburg in the early afternoon, one of Germany's largest and best preserved medieval cities, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The guided walking tour highlights the city's stunning architecture as you view the Old Town Hall, Dom St. Peter and the Porta Praetoria, gateway to an ancient Roman fort built in 179 AD. Marvel at beautiful churches and one of the oldest stone bridges crossing the Danube. Return to the boat or spend the afternoon at leisure discovering the delights of Regensburg on your own. Tonight, after dinner, the boat sets sail for Passau. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 11, Tuesday - Morning in Passau Dock this morning in 2500-year-old Passau, known for its pastel patrician houses, cafes, cobblestone lanes and riverfront promenade. Passau is a Bavarian town with a mix of Roman, Italian Baroque and Gothic architecture. Explore Passau on a guided walking tour in the morning, or join the optional full day tour to picturesque Salzburg, birthplace of Mozart and setting for the Sound of Music. The walking tour will include some of Salzburg's most historic sites including the Mirabell Palace, the Abbey, Salzburg Cathedral, and St. Peter's Cemetery. After lunch at a local restaurant, there will be time to discover Salzburg on your own before returning to the ship. If you choose to remain onboard the ship, continue sailing during lunch and relax this afternoon. In the early evening, all passengers will rejoin the ship and continue sailing for Melk. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Full Day Tour of Salzburg
DAY 12, Wednesday - Melk Abbey Disembark in Melk this morning for a guided tour of the historic Benedictine Abbey, considered one of the finest examples of Baroque architecture in Europe. View the Abbot's chambers, the Kaiser's walk and the lavish library. Then, return to the ship and continue cruising through the scenic Wachau Valley on the way to Vienna, the Imperial city legendary for its opulence and elegance. Tonight, perhaps take the opportunity to attend an evening of Viennese culture in the "City of Music" at an optional concert performance of the classical masterpieces of Mozart and Strauss, two of Vienna's most famous citizens. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Classical Viennese Concert (PM)
DAY 13, Thursday - Vienna City Tour This sparkling city on the Danube has captivated travelers for years with its elegant shops, world-class museums, and beautiful gardens. Drive along the famed Ringstrasse, Vienna's main boulevard lined with magnificent Baroque palaces, parks and monuments, the impressive Vienna Opera House or the Parliament building. On the walking part of the tour view the lavish Hofburg Palace, and finish at the majestic St. Stephen's Cathedral. Enjoy the afternoon at a café sampling the famous Viennese Sacher Torte, or, join the optional afternoon tour to the Imperial Schonbrunn Palace, once summer residence of the Hapsburgs. Visit the opulent baroque apartments and stroll through the world-famous manicured gardens. Set sail for Budapest this evening. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Optional: Schonbrunn Palace Tour (PM)
DAY 14, Friday - Bratislava City Tour This morning, enjoy the tranquil scenery as you sail along the scenic Danube. At noon, arrive in Bratislava, capital of Slovakia, a mix of modern and Baroque architecture. This capital city is among the youngest in Europe, yet retains a rich history dating back more than 2000 years. Walk along the cobblestone lanes of the historic town center; view St. Martin's Cathedral, coronation site of the kings of Hungary, the 13th century Old Town Hall and the Franciscan church. Time to explore this colorful city on your own before returning to the ship for dinner as you sail for stunning Budapest (Set sail after dinner 20:30). (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 15, Saturday - Budapest City Tour During your morning tour of the city you will visit the Buda side with its castle district, as well as the Pest side with the Parliament, the City Park and the Heroes Square. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, enjoy a lavish gala dinner on board. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
DAY 16, Sunday - Depart Hungary Disembarkation will end at 9:30 AM. (Breakfast)
River Cruise Highlights
See magnificent panoramic views of Budapest from atop Fisherman's Bastion
Tour romantic Vienna with its legendary opulence and elegance
In Melk, join a guided tour of the historic Benedictine Abbey
Marvel at the beautiful churches and ancient stone bridges in Regensburg
Cruise the Main-Danube Canal, considered a marvel of modern engineering
Walk in Bamberg's medieval center with its 11th century Romanesque cathedral
View the mighty Lorelei Rock named for the siren "Lorelei" rising vertically from the waters
Sail on the legendary Rhine to Cologne, capital of the Rhineland
In Amsterdam, board a glass-top boat and cruise the winding canals
All This Included
14 nights outside cabin aboard the First Class Monarch Countess
River port charges of $380 per person
41 meals: 14 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 14 dinners
Cruise director & activities host throughout cruise
Services of local guides in all major cities
Entrance fees per itinerary
Comfortable wireless earphones for enhanced touring during excursions
River Cruise Features & Amenities
Gala Welcome Dinner and Farewell Dinner
Wine and beer with dinners
Locally inspired recipes
Early riser breakfast in addition to buffet breakfast
Late night snack
Complimentary Wi-Fi access in public areas
Self-serve coffee and tea station
Lounge serving premium spirits
Non-smoking ship interior
Shore excursions conducted exclusively in English by licensed guides
Accommodations on this Tour
Cruising: Cabin onboard Monarch Countess
Cabin upgrades are available.
Land/Cruise only price does not include arrival/departure transfers.
Embarkation will begin at 2:00 pm however early arrivals may rest in the lounge if their assigned cabin is not ready upon check-in. Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information. While sailing with Monarch Cruises, passengers are subject to the cruise's Terms & Conditions.
Know Before You Book - High & Low Water: European river cruising has gained in popularity for very good reason. It's a relaxing and convenient way to experience Europe while enjoying the comfort of a deluxe ship. However, before making the decision to reserve your vacation, please be aware of potential conditions which may impact your cruise. While most of the time river cruises operate exactly as planned, weather conditions may result in high or low water levels which impact a ship's itinerary and, on occasion, render a ship unable to sail at all. On very rare occasions, other events such as heavy fog, a damaged lock, or an incapacitated vessel blocking the river, may impact a sailing. These events typically occur with little or no notice. In the event that a cruise is partially or completely impacted, the itinerary will be operated by deluxe motor coach, accompanied by a Tour Manager, with overnights in hotels. The itinerary will include as many of the originally scheduled sightseeing features as possible, considering the travel time and distances required, as well as meals. While it is not possible to recreate the more leisurely comforts of sailings, we will endeavor to provide a comparable itinerary. These alternative services will be provided at no additional charge.
This moderately active trip covers a fair amount of ground each day. Expect from three to four hours walking every touring day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. There is a potential for a small number of sailings to be impacted by river water levels, or other factors which may impact safe navigation. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach and may also involve hotel accommodations.
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.
Open Mon-Fri 7am to 10pm, Sat 8am-8pm, Sun 9am to 8pm, CST