Day 1: Amsterdam (Embark)
Arrive at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. If your cruise package includes a group arrival transfer or if you have purchased a private arrival transfer, you will be greeted by a Uniworld representative and transferred to the ship. (Dinner)
Day 2: Amsterdam
Enjoy the luxury of a full day in the “Venice of the North,” starting with a delightful tour of the Van Gogh Museum. Afterwards, explore the city with a canal ride or on foot with a local expert. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 3: Cologne
Enjoy a delightful tour of Cologne’s Old Town, where three medieval gates remain standing, as does the old city hall with its stunning Renaissance façade. Wander through the historical center and take in its charming atmosphere and narrow alleyways flanked by old houses. No matter how you choose to explore Old Town, you’ll also have ample free time to explore the city on your own.
In the evening, a special Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Welcome Dinner)
Day 4: Rüdesheim
Experience the most spectacular scenery on the Rhine this morning as you cruise past the famous Middle Rhine Valley. Later, experience Germany’s fabled Rheingau in one of two ways today. Take in spectacular views of the region’s famous vineyards from the perspective of an aerial cable car, or venture within an atmospheric medieval monastery and taste the Rieslings made on site. Like many cities along the Rhine, Rüdesheim has a lengthy history that stretches back to Roman times. These days, the town is best known for its narrow avenue of shops and wine bars called the Drosselgasse and its impressive Niederwald Monument. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 5: Frankfurt (Heidelberg)
Vibrant Frankfurt, often referred to as the “Mainhattan” of Europe, boasts world-class museums, soaring skyscrapers, cozy wine taverns and lovely parks. Choose a brief tour that gives you an overview of this major European financial and trade center. Alternatively, visit romantic Heidelberg and its Renaissance castle or hike the Philosophers’ Walk. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 6: Wertheim
After today, you may never eat a pretzel again without thinking of the town of Wertheim. You’ll meet one of Germany’s best pretzel makers, as well as the owner of a historic wine estate. If you’re more in the mood for a scenic bike ride, you are welcome to do that instead. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 7: Würzburg
Your ship will dock in the charming Franconian town of Würzburg, where you can visit the extraordinary Würzburg Residence, one of the most opulent baroque palaces in Europe. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 8: Cruising the Main River, Kitzingen (Rothenburg)
Step into a fairytale version of the Middle Ages in Rothenburg and visit a medieval castle that’s been described as a miniature Versailles. Spend a relaxing day onboard as your ship wends its way along the Main River between Würzburg and Bamberg. It’s something of a truism to say that this route takes you from wine to beer, and you’ll see the transition as you sail past the vineyard-covered slopes around Würzburg toward Bavaria’s famous beer-brewing center, Bamberg. Along the way, you’ll pass delightful little villages and romantic castle ruins, drift under lovely old bridges, and have plenty of time to observe the fascinating variety of vessels plying the river, from heavily loaded barges to jaunty little pleasure craft. (Breakfast Buffet, Dinner)
Day 9: Bamberg
Your floating boutique hotel takes you to Bamberg today, a well-preserved town that offers a fascinating glimpse of medieval times. Explore the city on foot or opt to head deeper into the Franconian countryside to experience an authentic slice of rural life—including a tractor ride. Like Rome, the city is built on seven hills—but in Bamberg, a church tops each one.
You’ll spend the rest of the day on the peaceful Main River, cruising past quiet Franconian hamlets and picturesque countryside. It’s the perfect time to indulge in the many comforts of your luxury ship while watching some of Europe’s loveliest scenery glide by. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 10: Nuremberg, Cruising the Main-Danube Canal
Head up to the top deck or find a seat with a good view—you won’t want to miss seeing the ship navigate its way through a marvel of modern engineering, the Main-Danube Canal. A formidable set of locks, 16 in all, lifts your ship to the crest of the European “continental divide.” Arrive in the archetypal medieval German city of Nuremberg. Nuremberg is justifiably famous for its gingerbread and pocket watches, and it was also the site of some key moments in 20th-century history. You’ll choose between two memorable ways of exploring this exceptional city. You can hop aboard a motorcoach and “Do as the Locals Do,” or you can accompany a local expert to the city’s most important WWII sites, including the enormous Nazi Party Rally Grounds—the actual site of the Nazi Party rallies. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 11: Regensburg
Today in Regensburg, you can travel through time or get a crash course in making craft beer, then watch high-tech robots assemble the Ultimate Driving Machine. Regensburg is a friendly town with quaint cobblestone streets, historic Roman ruins and a medieval city center. The remnants of Regensburg’s golden age are still on display, but don’t let its illustrious history fool you into thinking the town’s best days are all in the past. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 12: Passau
Located at the confluence of three rivers—the Danube, Inn and Ilz— Passau is well known for its ornate baroque cathedral. Today, the city is unusually well preserved, having been spared the brunt of Allied bombing during WWII, as you’ll see on your walking tour. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 13: Weissenkirchen (Melk)
Named for its white church, Weissenkirchen may very well be the prettiest village in the Wachau Valley. A local expert will show you around and introduce you to some regional delicacies, including a wine tasting. Prefer to go for baroque? Visit the 900-year-old Melk Abbey and its extraordinarily opulent library. Later, you can stretch your legs with a vineyard hike. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 14: Vienna
Vienna is a cultural treasure trove revered for its art and music (and sinfully rich pastries). Experience the City of Waltzes with your choice of excursions. Begin your day with an itinerary highlight—our “Morning with the Masters” at the Vienna Art History Museum. Then, you can choose between two different guided tours: a panoramic city tour or our “Do as the Locals Do” walking tour.
A special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Farewell Dinner)
Day 15: Budapest
Called the “Queen of the Danube,” in part because of the way the city hugs the banks of the river, Budapest is an enchanting city that vibrantly mixes East and West, medieval and modern. Made up of two parts— Buda (the hills) and Pest (the flatlands)—and divided by the Danube, Hungary’s capital presents an array of architectural styles that reveal its long and varied history. You’ll have two enticing ways to experience the city—a panoramic guided tour aboard a motorcoach with a visit to the Parliament, or discover the Budapest that locals love on a special walking tour of the city’s most important landmarks. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 16: Budapest
Other passengers are heading home today, but you are only halfway through your marvelous holiday. Today you are invited to enjoy a full-day visit to Hungary's Eger wine region for some lunch and, of course, wine tasting.
Day 17: Budapest
Located on opposite sides of the Danube, Buda and Pest each have their own distinctive character and allure. Explore this dynamic and multifaceted city with your choice of excursions—you can see it from a local’s perspective on our walking tour, cover more ground with a panoramic tour or “Let’s Go” with a guided bike ride. Vibrant Budapest, Hungary’s capital, offers an enchanting combination of East and West.
In the evening, a special Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Welcome Dinner)
Day 18: Mohács, Batina (Osijek), Vukovar
Welcome to Croatia! This ancient country, which has made a remarkable recovery from a brutal civil war, is noted for its beautiful countryside and thriving folk traditions, as well as simple, delicious local rustic food. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 19: Belgrade
Belgrade, the modern-day capital of Serbia, is one of Europe’s oldest cities, dating back some 7,000 years. Signs of its tumultuous history are visible everywhere, juxtaposed with the city’s vibrant modern-day present. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 20: Golubac, Cruising the Iron Gates
Head ashore to explore a Paleolithic site and an extraordinarily well-preserved medieval fortress. All along the way, history lines the banks of the river. Keep an eye out for Trajan’s Plaque, which the ancient Romans erected to commemorate the road they anchored in the steep cliffs above the water, and Golubac Castle, built in the 14th century and attacked successively by the Serbs, Magyars and Turks.
Unwind onboard as you cruise the breathtaking Iron Gates, an 83-mile-long (134-kilometer-long) stretch of scenic gorges that were cut through the Carpathian and Balkan mountains over eons by the Danube River. These gorges, which act as a natural border between Serbia and Romania, are among the most dramatic and beautiful sights in all of Europe. This was one of the swiftest and most dangerous stretches of the river before two dams were built: Iron Gate I and Iron Gate II. Construction on the dams began in 1964 and took 20 years to complete; they have dramatically altered the area’s landscape, raising the water level by 114 feet (35 meters) and drowning several islands and villages. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 21: Vidin
Vidin is a port town on the Danube that once played an important role in medieval Bulgarian politics, as the great fortress Baba Vida attests. It’s your base for an unusual excursion today—a visit to the fascinating Belogradchik rock formations. Or you can head to a local’s home to bake a traditional Bulgarian dish called banitsa. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 22: Rousse
Bulgaria’s foremost Danube port, Rousse is sometimes called “Little Vienna” for its elegant 19th-century mansions and public buildings.
In the evening, a special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you. (Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Farewell Dinner)
Day 23: Giurgiu (Disembark), Transfer to Bucharest
This morning, you’ll disembark the ship in Giurgiu and drive through the countryside to Bucharest, where you’ll enjoy a panoramic city tour or walking tour in the old Lipscani district. Tonight, you’ll relax in the comfort of a luxury hotel located in the heart of the city, Romania’s capital and its cultural and economic center. (Breakfast Buffet)
Day 24: Bucharest
On today’s agenda—a guided tour of the infamous Ceau?escu Mansion. Venture to the opulent former residence of Romania’s former leader Nicolae Ceau?escu, where you’ll have a guided tour. It’s been thirty years since deposed Romanian president Ceau?escu and his wife Elena were executed by a firing squad on Christmas Day in 1989, but now you can roam the opulent 80-room residence where the couple once lived, situated on 3.5 acres of grounds in one of Bucharest’s most desirable neighborhoods. (Breakfast Buffet)
Day 25: Bucharest
Check out of your hotel this morning. If your cruise/tour package includes a group departure transfer or if you have purchased a private departure transfer, you will be transferred to Bucharest Henri Coanda International Airport for your flight home. (Continental Breakfast)
Discover the best of Europe on one grand journey from the North Sea to the Black Sea.
For centuries, people have dreamed of linking the great rivers of Europe, making it possible to travel by water across the continent between the Black and North seas. Today that dream is a reality. Prepare for the cruise of a lifetime as you travel the length of Europe through eight nations, exploring wonders of the Old World and the New, the East and the West.
Sail the romantic Rhine, the serene Main and the captivating Danube, witnessing dazzling natural beauty and incomparable architectural feats. Visit no fewer than five capital cities (Amsterdam, Vienna, Budapest, Belgrade and Bucharest) and a dozen towns and villages, with time to explore each. Enjoy numerous UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the castle-dotted Upper Middle Rhine Valley and magnificent Cologne Cathedral.
From Amsterdam to Bucharest, you’ll visit the best of Europe with its spectacular architecture and stunning history on this truly remarkable journey.
Who will enjoy this cruise/tour? Travelers wishing to discover Europe’s past and present, from east to west, Amsterdam to Bucharest, on one astonishing journey.
Ultimate European Journey is a combination of Highlights of Eastern Europe and European Jewels.
All meals onboard, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients
23 breakfasts, 21 lunches, 21 dinners
2 Captain's Welcome and 2 Captain's Farewell Receptions
2 Welcome and 2 Farewell Gala Dinners
Unlimited beverages onboard, including fine wine, beer, spirits, specialty coffee and tea, soft drinks and mineral water
19 days of excursions, including “Choice Is Yours” options, all fully hosted by English speaking local experts
Guided “Let's Go,” “Do as the Locals Do” and “Village Day” programs
State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio-headset system on all excursions
Use of bicycles and Nordic walking sticks
22-night cruise in a riverview stateroom on the imperial River Duchess
2 nights in Bucharest at the Radisson Blu Hotel (or similar) with breakfast
Lavishly appointed riverview staterooms and suites have handcrafted Savoir® Beds of England, high thread count 100% Egyptian cotton sheets and European duvets, and a menu of pillow options
Free Internet and Wi-Fi access
8 countries: Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Romania, Serbia, The Netherlands
9 UNESCO World Heritage sites
Services of an experienced Uniworld Cruise Manager
All transfers on arrival and departure days
All gratuities, both onboard and onshore
Captivating onboard local entertainment
Cultural enrichment, including Signature Lectures