River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 Begin your adventure in Budapest
Tour begins: 6:00 PM, Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest. A transfer is included from Budapest's Ferenc Liszt Airport or Keleti train station to Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest. Budapest has acquired quite an excellent reputation for cuisine; tonight’s special welcome cocktail reception and dinner is at the grand Akadémia Club in the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. Meet your fellow travelers and Tauck Directors and learn more about what's in store on your exploration of the Danube River, its cultural landscapes and the region's rich automotive legacies. (D)
Day 2 Stories of Pest or a visit to the Hungaroring
Budapest is split into "Buda" and "Pest" by the Danube River. This morning, you can choose to explore the Pest side of the city, starting with a special tour of the opulent State Opera House, opened in 1884, followed by visits to City Park and Heroes’ Square, and a themed walking tour that focuses on the Hungarian Revolution and includes the Parliament building, the US Embassy and St. Stephen’s Basilica. Or you can join us for an excursion to the Hungaroring motorsports complex in Mogyoród outside Budapest, the first Formula One racetrack built behind the then-"Iron Curtain" (in 1986), and home to the Formula One Hungarian Grand Prix; your tour includes the track's Race Control Center, the pits and more. The afternoon and evening are free for you to pursue what interests you most in Budapest; enjoy lunch and dinner as you please in town. (B)
Day 3 Explore Buda and embark your riverboat
Head up to Castle Hill, a UNESCO World Heritage Site overlooking the Danube on the Buda side of the city, for sightseeing and lunch at a local café. See Fisherman’s Bastion, with its Neo-Romanesque design, and admire the stained glass windows and centuries of history in the 14th-century, late-Gothic Matthias Church (may be closed on some days due to services). Board your riverboat this afternoon in Budapest, and meet your crew at the welcome reception followed by dinner this evening, as you begin to cruise the Danube River, bound for Bratislava, Slovakia. (B, L, D)
Day 4 Baroque Bratislava or Volkswagen factory tour
After the riverboat's arrival in Bratislava this morning, an onboard presentation by our resident expert takes you inside contemporary Slovakia and its capital, Bratislava, for a look at the region's politics, economy, religion, social order, preservation and emergence of the arts. After lunch aboard the riverboat, you'll have a choice of exploring Bratislava's cobblestoned, vehicle-free historic city center on a walking tour – viewing its 13th-century Old Town Hall, Baroque Habsburg-era palaces, the Opera House, Slovak Philharmonic Hall and Hviezdoslav Square, and visiting the Primates Palace (subject to availability), followed by some free time. Or set off on an afternoon excursion to the Volkswagen Bratislava Plant – which builds various Audi, Porsche and Volkswagen vehicles – for a factory tour revealing some of the latest technology in modern automotive production. Back aboard the riverboat, dinner tonight introduces you to a glimpse of daily life in Slovakia with a taste of regional cuisine and a performance by a talented troupe of Slovak dancers. (B, L, D)
Day 5 Exploring Vienna & an Imperial Evening
Your riverboat arrives this morning in Vienna, where an onboard lecture on Austria by a local expert followed by an introductory tour of this former capital of the old Habsburg Empire – and its grand boulevard, the Ringstrasse – precedes your choice of a walking tour of medieval Old Town Vienna or a visit to the Vienna Technical Museum (Technisches Museum Wien), a century-old institution exploring how science and technology shape our daily lives. After lunch aboard ship, the rest of the day is yours to explore this famous city as you please. Later, nothing compares to the royal treatment and pageantry you’ll experience tonight at our private Imperial Evening in the opulent Palais Pallavicini, a private Baroque palace in Vienna that film buffs may have spotted in the 1940s film noir classic The Third Man. Welcome cocktails and dinner precede an unforgettable spectacle of beautiful ball gowns and a musical performance celebrating the legacy of Mozart. (B, L, D)
Day 6 A choice in Vienna and journey to Dürnstein
Wake up in Dürnstein for a choice of activities today. One involves taking a closer look at Dürnstein's 16th-century Baroque houses and 13th-century Romanesque church on a walking tour along its cobblestone streets, followed by a tour of its Baroque monastery and a wine tasting at a local venue. Another choice is a guided bicycle ride along the river, past Wachau Valley vineyards. Or set off on a morning-long excursion to Heldenberg for a visit to Koller’s Oldtimer Museum – home to the largest collection of vintage cars, motorcycles and other vehicles in Austria – where you can trace 130 years of automotive development from the “horseless carriage” to the modern sports car. Back in Dürnstein this afternoon, enjoy some free time in this charming riverside town, perhaps taking an invigorating climb up the steps to the ruins of Kuenringerburg, a hilltop castle above the town where Richard the Lionhearted was held for ransom during the Crusades. Return to the riverboat and continue cruising the Danube River through the Wachau Valley, Austria's lush wine-growing region that was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its well-preserved medieval landscapes, to Linz; after the Chef's Signature dinner onboard, enjoy a show put on by members of the riverboat crew. (B, L, D)
Day 7 Linz or the Ferdinand Porsche Experience
With your riverboat docked in Linz today, you can choose to stay in town this morning and explore this Austrian city on the Danube on a walking tour, or set off on a full-day excursion to the Ferdinand Porsche Experience (fahr(T)raum) in Mattsee in the heart of Salzburg's Lake District. Your visit to this interactive museum and memorial to pioneer automobile designer Ferdinand Porsche, founded by his grandson, includes a guided tour and a ride on a vintage car. Back aboard ship, enjoy dinner and a musical performance by a classical group this evening as the riverboat makes its way to Passau, Germany. (B, L, D)
Day 8 Passau or a driving experience
Once a Roman outpost at the confluence of the Inn, Ill and Danube rivers, Passau is over 2,500 years old – a Bavarian town of pastel patrician houses, cafés, romantic cobblestone lanes and riverfront promenades. Upon your riverboat's arrival in Passau this morning, you'll have a choice of exploring this riverside town's storybook mix of Roman, Italian Baroque and German Gothic architecture on a guided walking tour; embarking on a bicycle excursion through town, accompanied by a local guide; or enjoying an opportunity for a personal driving experience (at an additional cost). The riverboat continues cruising this afternoon and evening, charting a course for Regensburg via Vilshofen. (B, L, D)
Day 9 Historic Regensburg or a BMW factory visit
With roots dating back nearly 2,000 years to Roman times, the well-preserved medieval city of Regensburg boasts more than 1,400 historic structures. After your riverboat docks here this morning, you can choose to explore this riverside city on a walking tour that includes the Dom (cathedral), the market, the town hall, and 12th-century Steinerne Brücke (a medieval stone bridge over the Danube). Or set off on an excursion to a nearby working BMW plant to experience the state-of-the-art operations of one of Germany's pioneering automotive manufacturers – Bayerische Motoren Werke (or Bavarian Motor Works), founded in Munich in 1916 – firsthand. Return to the riverboat for your final night of cruising, a farewell toast and dinner. (B, L, D)
Day 10 Disembark in Regensburg & on to Frankfurt
Disembark your riverboat after breakfast in Regensburg and travel to Frankfurt for a two-night stay. Upon arrival, join us for an introductory tour of this renowned German industrial and financial center, then check into your hotel in the heart of the city for an evening spent as you wish and dinner as you please. (B)
Day 11 Choices in vibrant Frankfurt
Your choices of sightseeing in Frankfurt this morning include a walking tour of city highlights followed by free time to explore on your own; or a tour highlighting Frankfurt's automotive legacy, including its role as the European headquarters of many international car companies. Following a free afternoon to pursue what interests you most in Frankfurt, join us this evening for a farewell cocktail reception followed by dinner. (B, D)
Day 12 Journey home
Tour ends: Frankfurt, Germany. Fly home anytime. A transfer is included from Sofitel Frankfurt Opera Hotel to Frankfurt International Airport or Frankfurt Hauptbahnhof train stations. Please allow a minimum of 3 hours for flight check-in at the airport. (B)
River Cruise Highlights
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Private Imperial Evening at a palace in Vienna featuring a gala dinner and Viennese performers
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Behind-the-scenes factory tours of BMW and Volkswagen plants
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – An opportunity for personal driving experiences in Germany
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Visit to the Ferdinand Porsche Experience celebrating the auto designer’s life
All This Included
From the legacy of design pioneer Ferdinand Porsche to today's high-tech automobile production processes, celebrate Central Europe’s contributions to automotive history and culture on a unique Danube River cruise.
Visits to automobile factories, vintage car collections and museums, racing facilities and more highlight a very special 12-day journey featuring a 7-night Danube River cruise spotlighting the rich automotive legacy of Central Europe. Explore both Buda and Pest during a two-night stay in Hungary’s capital. In Bratislava, embark on a walking tour of Slovakia’s capital or a visit to its Volkswagen plant. Activities in the celebrated Austrian capital, Vienna, include a sightseeing tour of this former Imperial city, a gala dinner and a visit to a technology museum. In the Danube’s Wachau Valley wine region, enjoy a tasting of the area’s wines and a bicycling trip. Call on Linz for a walking tour or an excursion to the Ferdinand Porsche Experience in Mattsee, celebrating the famed auto designer’s life. Explore Passau, Bavaria’s “City of Three Rivers,” on a walking tour or bike excursion. Choose a city tour of historic Regensburg on the Danube, or a visit to a nearby BMW factory. Discover the important city of Frankfurt on a two-night stay, including its modern role as the European headquarters of many international car companies.
All gratuities to ship staff, drivers, local guides, Tauck Directors and Tauck Cruise Director
Tauck's private shore excursions and distinctive inclusions valued at $2,842
Bicycling excursions and wine tastings in the Wachau Valley
Discovering both sections of Buda and Pest during a two-night stay in Budapest
A walking tour of Slovakia’s capital, Bratislava
A sightseeing tour and a visit to a technology museum in Vienna
Exploring Passau on a walking tour or bike ride
A city tour of ancient Regensburg
A two-night stay in Frankfurt exploring the city’s role as European headquarters of many international car companies
Unlimited complimentary beverages aboard ship include regional wine, beer and premium spirits in addition to specialty coffee, water and soft drinks
Airport and train transfers upon arrival and departure as noted
27 meals; select meals in local restaurants; service charges, taxes, porterage, and applicable fuel surcharges
Accommodations on this Tour
Budapest: Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest
Cruising: Cabin onboard ms Savor or ms Joy
Frankfurt: Sofitel Frankfurt Opera
Cabin upgrades are available.
Land / cruise price per person, based on double occupancy, includes cruise fare, most meals, port charges, beer and wine with lunch and dinner aboard ship, shore excursions, applicable fuel surcharges, and gratuities to Tauck Directors, Tauck Cruise Director, ship staff, local guides & drivers, as well as on all included meals.
Unlimited complimentary beverages aboard ship include regional wine, beer and premium spirits in addition to specialty coffee, water and soft drinks.
Although not expected, Tauck reserves the right to alter the sequence of ports or omit or substitute scheduled ports or attractions at any time without prior notice. East and west itineraries are similar. Museums and attractions may be subject to closure due to state, local or religious holidays. This cruise includes a fair amount of walking in each city.
This cruise contains a fair amount of walking in each city.
Activities marked with an asterisk (*) are at your own risk; a signed liability waiver will be required.
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.