viking river cruises 2

 
Rome
 
Florence
 
Gondolas in Venice
 
Salzburg
 
Vienna
 
Prague
 
Dresden
 
Dresden Castle Moritzburg
 
Potsdam - Palace Sans Souci
 
Brandenburg Gate Berlin
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Grand European Tour & Elbe River CruiseGrand European Tour & Elbe River Cruise

Itinerary

Rome   Day 1 & 2    Start of 'Grand European Loop'  Land Tour

You will be driven from you arrival terminal directly to your hotel in Rome, right in the heart of the city, close to the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. Explore the city and some of Rome's best known ancient sights, the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Capitoline Hill, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon and Piazza Navona in the afternoon with a 'hop-on/hop-off bus' or on our second day with a guided 3-hour 'Classic Rome' tour.

During your days in Rome you will have the 'Roma Pass', which entitles you to priority admission into the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and the Villa Borghese. See Rome options for further extensions to your tour.

Florence  Day 3

In just a few hours of train journey through the delightful Tuscan countryside you will arrive in the midst of artistic splendour in Florence. In the afternoon you can choose one of 2 options to familiarize yourself with this splendid city by either a hop-on/hop-off bus or by joining a small group guided bicycle tour.

Florence  Day 4

The options on this day should have something for everyone’s taste. Choose either a day excursion to Pisa to see the leaning tower or see the great masters in the Uffizi Gallery with priority admission tickets. See Florence & Tuscany options for a further extension to your tour.

Venice  Day 5

Your first view of Venice will make you feel that you have arrived on a movie set. Nothing can prepare you for that first moment when you see Venice and the Canale Grande spread out before you. Spend the day in awe just walking around and losing yourself in Venice and its tiny cobble-stoned alleyways, canals, bridges and piazzas. Dine in a lagoon front restaurant with spectacular views over to Venice.

Venice  Day 6

Choose one of 3 walking tours: The ‘Hidden Venice Walking tour’, the 'Venice walking tour with St. Mark's Basilica' or in the evening the ‘Venice Ghost walking tour’. In the afternoon enjoy a canal cruise and a visit to a glass blowing factory.

Austrian Alps/Bad Hofgastein  Day 7 & 8

After spending 6 days in three of Italy’s most exciting cities it is now a good time to take a break and enjoy some of Europe’s most awe-inspiring scenery and landscape, the Austrian Alps. Pamper yourself in the Spa Resort of Bad Hofgastein; enjoy walking, hiking or mountain biking through alpine meadows and hills. Take the cable car to the summit of one of the mountains (http://www.skigastein.com/de/info/info-material/bildergalerie/bildergalerie-sommer) surrounding Bad Hofgastein and gasp at the views to glacier-covered mountain peaks of up to 3500m height. Participate in a guided hike (when available) and experience Austrian hospitality in a rustic alpine inn. Cross Europe’s first hanging bridge at an altitude of 2,300 m on foot (optional). Enjoy a traditional Austrian 4-course dinner every evening. 

Salzburg  Day 9

Your hotel in Salzburg is close to the Mirabell Park where scenes from the 'Sound of Music' were filmed. In the afternoon take the cogwheel train to the fortress overlooking Salzburg, visit Mozart's birthplace and St. Peter's spellbinding cemetery with its catacombs of the early Christians. In the evening enjoy a relaxing river cruise on the Salzach River while admiring the fortress, churches, bridges and the view of the stunning mountain ranges in the Salzburg Province.

Salzburg  Day 10

The morning is yours to further explore the sites of Salzburg. Visit Hellbrunn Palace and the Archbishop's trick fountains. In the afternoon you have the choice of one of two guided coach tours, which will leave from your hotel: the famous 'Sound of Music Tour' during which you can sing your heart out while enjoying the breathtaking landscapes and locations where the famous musical was filmed; or the 'Austrian Lakes and Mountain Tour, starting with a scenic view of Salzburg before touring the historical landmarks of the beautiful Lake District, see the impressive hunting castle Fuschl, take refreshments at the White Horse Inn and enjoy a boat ride on lake Wolfgang. Then enjoy a meal and drink under the huge chestnut trees in the beer garden of the Augustine monastery. Here the monks have been brewing their famous beer since the 17th century. See Salzburg options for extra sightseeing and extensions. See Munich for a 2 day side excursion.

Vienna  Day 11

The futuristic Railjet train takes you in under 3 hours to Vienna. You will be enchanted by its spectacular architecture, cozy coffeehouses, atmospheric wine taverns and musical tradition, which you hear everywhere as musical events take place all the time. In the evening you can take a dreamy ride on the Viennese tramway  to one of the oldest traditional 'Heurigen' Pubs and enjoy a traditional Austrian meal and music in a building dating back to the 12th Century.

Vienna  Day 12

You have a 2-day pass for all local transport, including the historic trams, in and around Vienna. Spend the day visiting the Imperial Palace and the magnificent baroque Schoenbrunn Palace. Visit the colourful Hundertwasser village with its 'Toilet of Modern Art'. Try and taste-test as many light and flaky applestruddles or sweet dumplings as you can and still walk back to the hotel – or the next atmospheric wine tavern. See Vienna options for extra sightseeing and extensions.

Prague  Day 13   Start of Elbe River Cruise

Arrive in Prague, then transfer to your hotel for the start of your Elbe river cruise. After check-in, enjoy free time to explore this dynamic city—or join the “welcome walk” to stretch your legs and start getting oriented.

Prague & Melnik  Day 14

Tour Prague, “City of a Hundred Spires.” Take a guided walk through Old Town; then ride to Hradcany to tour inside Prague Castle. After some free time to have lunch and explore on your own, transfer to Melnik to board your ship and enjoy a welcome cocktail and dinner. (B, D)

Litomerice  Day 15

Spend the morning cruising leisurely through the scenic area of Porta Bohemia on the Elbe. Arrive just after lunch in Litomerice, one of the prettiest towns in the Czech Republic. See St. Stephen’s Cathedral, the Jesuit Church, historic Market Square and many residential buildings from the baroque, Renaissance and Gothic periods. The tour ends with a tasting of beers from this Bohemian region. Dine aboard; the ship remains docked overnight so feel free to take an evening stroll. (B, L, D)

Saxon Switzerland  Day 16

Cruise through the magnificent, soaring rock formations of the Saxon Switzerland region, then dock at the spa town of Bad Schandau. From there you make our way to the famous rock tower known as the Bastei (bastion), formed by water a million years ago, to enjoy stunning panoramic views of the Elbe. Return aboard for dinner and evening cruising. (B, L, D)

Dresden  Day 17

Awake in Dresden, nicknamed “Florence on the Elbe,” and embark on a tour just after breakfast. Drive through the 19th-Century residential area to the Dresden Castle complex; enter the Green Vault to see a comprehensive collection of the Saxon monarchs’ crown jewels. Continue on foot to see Zwinger Palace, Semper Opera House and the Frauenkirche (Church of Our Lady) with its distinctive bell-shaped dome, which survived the World War II bombings but collapsed the following day and was later rebuilt. Enjoy some free time in the afternoon to explore more of Dresden.  (B, L, D)

Meissen & Torgau  Day 18

Arrive in Meissen in the morning. Visit the Meissenware factory, which has produced fine porcelain since the early 1700s. See firsthand how this trademarked porcelain is created and tour the museum. Proceed to Castle Hill for a walking tour through the Old Town. Return aboard for lunch and an afternoon departure. Later, arrive in Torgau with its wonderful Renaissance houses. Join your Program Director for an evening stroll to see fortified Hartenfels Castle, Market Square and the riverside monument commemorating the historic 1945 meeting between Russian and American troops. Your ship remains docked overnight. (B, L, D)

Wittenberg  Day 19

Cruise further down the Elbe and arrive after lunch in Wittenberg, birthplace of the Reformation. Follow in Martin Luther’s footsteps to view many of Wittenberg’s historic landmarks. Tour inside Luther’s House and St. Marien’s Church, where he preached. See the Castle Church where Luther posted his 95 Theses. (B, L, D)

Dessau & Magdeburg  Day 20

Arrive in the morning in Dessau. Take a journey to Wörlitz Park, Germany’s first landscaped park with English-style gardens. Tour inside Wörlitz Castle, fashioned after an English country home, and walk the grounds. Return to your ship for lunch aboard and an afternoon departure. Dine aboard as you cruise to Magdeburg, where the ship docks for the night. In the evening join your ship’s Captain for a festive dinner on board. (B, L, D)

Potsdam & Berlin  Day 21

After breakfast your Elbe river cruise comes to an end. Disembark and travel to Potsdam, historic capital of the German state of Brandenburg. Tour either Sanssouci Palace, a perfect example of German rococo architecture, or the nearby 200-room baroque New Palace—both built by Prussian King Frederick the Great in the 18th century. After lunch on your own, you will proceed to the dynamic German capital of Berlin. Check in to your hotel and take the rest of the day to explore the city on your own. (B)

Berlin  Day 22

After breakfast check out of your hotel and proceed to the airport for your return flight. Or, extend your journey with additional nights in fascinating Berlin, giving you time to see more of the city’s highlights. (B)

The following meals are included: B = Breakfast; L = Lunch; D = Dinner

 

 

Tour Prices 2020

From AUD $3,990 per person twin share for the land component of your tour.

Prices for the cruise component of your tour vary and depend on the choice of cabin, optional excursions or extensions. At times discounts or special offers are available. Click here for further cruise information, departure dates, itinerary and price details.

 

Inclusions River Cruise

Accommodation

  • Deluxe river-view stateroom
  • 1 night stay in Hilton Prague or similar
  • 1 night stay in Hilton Berlin or similar

Meals

  • All onboard meals: 9 breakfasts, 6 lunches & 7 dinners
  • Complimentary beverages - wine, beer & soft drinks with onboard lunch and dinner

Shore excursions

  • 9 included guided tours as per itinerary

Other

  • Port charges
  • Shipboard gratuities

 

Inclusions Land Tour

Accommodation

  •  12 nights in first class, 4 and 5 star hotels, some in historical buildings

Travel

  • Airport transfer to hotel with shared shuttle transport on arrival
  • Touring coach ticket and seat reservation between Venice and South Austria
  • Transport from train station to hotel on arrival and back to train station on departure in Bad Hofgastein
  • Shared shuttle transport to airport from hotel on departure

Meals

  • 12 full breakfasts
  • Dinner in Venice with spectacular views over Venice
  • Two 4-course meals featuring the best of Austrian cooking in the Austrian Alps
  • Rustic Austrian meal in historic wine tavern in Vienna

Sightseeing and Excursions

  • Sightseeing with a double-decker 'hop-on-hop-off' bus in Rome or the '3 hour Classic Tour' instead of the 'Hop-on-hop-off' bus
  • Sightseeing tours in  Florence and Venice
  • 'Changing of the Guards' at Buckingham Palace walking tour
  • Excursion from Florence to nearby Pisa to see the leaning tower or priority admission tickets to Uffizi gallery
  • 2-day Venice canal boat pass
  • Canal boat excursion to Murano and visit to glass blowing artisans
  • ‘Roma pass’ - free transport for 3 days
  • Admission into the Colosseum (priority entry ticket), Roman Forum and the Galleria Borghese
  • Lift ticket to the 'Schlossalm' mountain in Austrian Alps. (Or admission ticket to the Thermal Spa complex in bad weather)
  • Use of bicycles in Austrian Alps
  • In Salzburg ‘Sound of Music tour’ or ‘Austrian Lakes and Mountain tour’
  • Cruise on the Salzach river in Salzburg
  • Admission to Salzburg fortress and funicular train
  • Admission to Mozart's birthplace and Christian Catacombs in Salzburg
  • Transport and admission to Hellbrunn Palace and the Archbishop's Trick Fountains
  • 3-day pass for all transport in Vienna
  • Priority admission tickets to Palace Schönbrunn or the Imperial Palace in Vienna

 

For more information on special offers, pricing and touring options or if you would like us to phone you for a free, no obligation phone consultation please click here.

Surcharges apply if travelling during Easter and Christmas holidays, New Years Eve, Venice Carneval, Salzburg Festival.

Single and triple share travellers please note that some changes to inclusions are necessary in particular at peak holiday times. Please contact us for details.

These prices and tour information are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking.

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