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European Holiday Markets

Operated by: Uniworld River Cruises

8 Days from $3,699 per person
Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Countries Visited

Germany, Austria ...more Germany, Austria

Locations Visited

Nuremberg, Roth, Regensburg, Deggendorf, Passau, Linz, Vienna ...more Nuremberg, Roth, Regensburg, Deggendorf, Passau, Linz, Vienna
  1. Day 1 Nuremberg (Embark)

    Arrive at Nuremberg Airport. 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.

    meals Dinner
  2. Day 2 Nuremberg, Roth

    For a truly over-the-top holiday extravaganza, look no further than Nuremberg, which boasts the largest and grandest Christmas Market in all of Germany—and that’s really saying something. The “Gingerbread Capital of the World” pulls out all the stops during the holidays, as you’ll see for yourself on a panoramic tour guaranteed to put you in a festive mood. You could not ask for a more perfect place to begin an exploration of Christmas traditions than Nuremberg. The people of Nuremberg hold their Christkindlesmarkt very close to their hearts. The iconic Christkind, with her white-and-gold dress, long blond curls and golden crown, has been the symbol for the Christmas Market for many decades. During Advent, she is the most important representative of the city; every year she opens the Christmas Market by declaring: “Welcome, young and old, to my little community of wood and cloth. While this market’s splendor is fleeting, the joy it brings is eternal.” And with that declaration, the market festivities begin in a town that is famous for its gingerbread and its long toy-making tradition.

    A special Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

    Featured Excursions: Nuremberg city tour with Christmas Market

    Masterpiece Collection (for an additional charge): Nuremberg WWII historical tour

    Nuremberg city tour with Christmas Market
    Beautiful at any time, Nuremberg’s Old Town is especially magical when dressed in all of its holiday splendor. Unfortunately, the city’s history also has a dark side, as you will see on a panoramic tour that shows you places where Hitler celebrated the might of his Third Reich—the Rally Grounds and the never-finished coliseum, Congress Hall—before you reach Old Town, where you’ll find the archetypal medieval German city. Stroll through the castle gardens and enjoy breathtaking views of the city, then walk through a maze of cobblestone lanes down to the central Market Square. There, spread out before the Church of Our Lady, is the largest Christmas market in Germany. Two hundred stalls filled with holiday wares—ornaments, nutcrackers, seasonal treats and hand-carved toys—await you, and the irresistible aromas of roasting nuts, cinnamon and grilled sausages waft through the air. Adding to the fun is an area set aside especially for children, complete with a two-tiered carousel featuring carved reindeer and Santa’s sleigh. As you wander through the market, you will certainly want to indulge in some of the city’s famous gingerbread; after all, Nuremberg is known as the “Gingerbread Capital of the World.” Shuttles are available to take you to and from the ship.

    Masterpiece Collection: Nuremberg WWII historical tour
    Duration: 
    4 hours     Price: $59 pre-purchase/€52 EUR onboard     Pace: Intermediate
    Hitler considered Nuremberg the perfect expression of German culture and chose it as the location for his massive rallies and most grandiose building schemes. Visit the Party Rally Grounds and the Documentation Center’s exhibit on the rise and fall of the Nazis, and see the Nuremberg Memoriam, which gives you a view of Courtroom 600, where 21 Nazi war criminals were tried in 1945—it remains an active courtroom and cannot be viewed during court proceedings, though the displays, including pieces of the original dock, can be seen.

    *Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences can be added to a booking up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if the booking window is missed, guests can book onboard (space permitting) and pay in Euros. Pre-booked Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are refundable up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if inside of 48 hours they are non-refundable. Select Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences require a minimum number of participants and are subject to cancellation (with full refund) if minimum is not met. Gratuities are included. Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are non-commissionable. Prices are subject to change.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner
  3. Day 3 Regensburg

    The Old Town of Regensburg sparkles with holiday lights and decorations this time of year, adding to its already considerable charms. Check out the best and brightest cultural sights, then head to what may very well be the most romantic Christmas market in all of Germany, nestled within the courtyard of a beautiful baroque castle. “Regensburg is so beautifully situated; this region had to attract a town,” Goethe wrote in his Diary of an Italian Voyage. And attract a town it did. In fact, it first attracted the armies of ancient Rome, who founded the town in about the year 100. The town thrived, not just because of its beautiful location, but also because ambitious and farseeing locals built a bridge over the Danube in the 12th century. The Stone Bridge helped Regensburg become an international trading hub and, at one time, the capital of Bavaria. So many of the handsome buildings from that period remain that UNESCO declared the old city center a World Heritage Site.

    Featured Excursion: “2,000 Years in One Hour” Regensburg walking discovery tour with enchanting Christmas Market in the Thurn and Taxis Castle

    “2,000 Years in One Hour” Regensburg walking discovery tour with enchanting Christmas Market in the Thurn and Taxis Castle
    Old-town Regensburg sparkles with holiday lights and decorations at this time of year, adding to its enormous charm. As you walk through the cobbled lanes of the UNESCO-designated city center, Regensburg’s 2,000-year history is revealed: The ancient Roman gate still stands, as do the Stone Bridge, the Gothic town hall where the Imperial Diet met for three centuries, the 13th-century fortified patrician houses, and the spectacular Cathedral of St. Peter, whose magnificent 14th-century stained-glass windows alone are worth your walk. At the end of your tour, you’ll find yourself at what may be the most romantic Christmas market in all of Germany: the one laid out in the courtyard of the Thurn and Taxis Castle. A glorious baroque palace enfolds the square, where branch-thatched huts sell handcrafted local wares and Bavarian delicacies. There’s always a nearby bonfire where you can warm up while you sip your mulled wine or nibble a hot pastry. The princely Thurn and Taxis family has owned the palace for centuries, and Princess Gloria (once known as the punk princess for her youthful escapades) may come out to read a Christmas story to an audience of children.

    The rest of the day is yours to spend as you wish. Christmas markets are set up in the area around the 500-year-old Neupfarrkirche (a market that has been voted the loveliest in Germany), in front of the classical columns of the former city guardhouse and in the Kohlenmarkt, where artisans and craftspeople sell handmade dolls, marionettes, pottery and other fine-quality wares. Shop for children’s toys or traditional Nativity scenes with hand-carved figures. As you take in the delights of the markets, enjoy regional specialties, such as mulled blueberry wine from the Bavarian Forest, Regensburg sausages on crisp rolls, steamed dampfnudel (dumplings with vanilla sauce) and mulled cider.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  4. Day 4 Deggendorf (Theresienthal), Passau

    Is that the sound of…jingle bells? Yes indeed, but that’s not Santa’s sleigh you’re hearing, it’s a horse-drawn wagon whisking you through the densely wooded Bavarian Forest. This area is known for glass-making, which you’ll observe close up at a famous workshop. Onward to Passau, a lovely place to take a stroll and visit the local Christmas market, followed by a traditional Bavarian dinner served in a festively decorated barn. Begin the day in the beautiful Bavarian Forest, known as the green roof of Europe, and then explore historic Passau, the three-river city on the Austrian border.

    Featured Excursions:
    Exclusive Bavarian Forest village with Theresienthal glass manufactory visit
    Passau walking discovery tour with Christmas Market
    Bavarian Christmas celebration with dinner in a country barn

    Exclusive Bavarian Forest village with Theresienthal glass manufactory visit
    Want to know what it feels like to live in a Christmas card illustration? Find out as you snuggle down in toasty blankets for a brisk ride in a horse-drawn wagon (or, if there’s snow, a horse-drawn sleigh) through the wonderland that is the Bavarian Forest in December. The largest nature preserve in Europe, the Bavarian Forest is home to lynxes and river otters, among other rare species, as well as miles of ski trails. It is also home to a long tradition of glassmaking; the famous ruby-red Bohemian lead-crystal glass is made here. See this tradition at work with a visit to the world-renowned glass manufacturer Theresienthal. The company fell on hard times and was forced to close for a short time in the late 20th century, but it was rescued by its employees. Some of the craftspeople—wood turners, glassblowers, engravers and painters—you’ll see at work are fourth- or fifth-generation Theresienthal artisans. You can peruse the exquisite glassware in the adjacent shop—just in case someone on your Christmas list loves fine glassware—and visit the glass museum, where you’ll find a renowned collection of glassware representing some of the pieces Theresienthal made for the courts of Europe in the 19th century.

    Note: On rare occasions, Theresienthal must empty and refit its ovens. During such times, glass-blowing demonstrations are unavailable; passengers will still enjoy a visit to the workshop and an explanation of glass making and engraving techniques.

    Passau walking discovery tour with Christmas Market
    Join your guide for a stroll through picturesque lanes in the heart of Passau, stopping at the Town Hall to see its magnificent atrium, which boasts several massive works by the famous German painter Ferdinand Wagner, and pausing to admire the beautiful rococo stairway of the bishop’s New Residence. After much of the town burned to the ground in 1662 and again in 1680, the reconstruction involved many Italian artists, who gave Passau the baroque and rococo touches you see everywhere. Monumental St. Stephan’s Cathedral, built in glorious baroque style, forms the backdrop for the Passau Christmas Market. You’ll find a lot to enjoy here—from miniature Bavarian houses and blown-glass ornaments to spun-sugar confections—in more than 70 stalls. At times, the Passau Christmas Market also features demonstrations by local craftspeople, such as glassblowers, candle makers, wood carvers and confectioners, so you can buy your gifts from the people who made them.

    Bavarian Christmas celebration with dinner in a country barn
    You’ll visit a family-owned farm for a traditional holiday celebration. Enjoy the festively decorated country barn while you listen to carols and some beloved Bavarian polka and waltz tunes and see how good a pair of lederhosen can look on the right man at a mini fashion show (if you are in the market for dirndls and lederhosen, the family’s specialty clothes shop is right up your alley).

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  5. Day 5 Cruising the Danube River, Linz

    There’s more to Linz than its famous Linzer torte, although that alone makes it well worth a visit. The city has a thriving contemporary art scene, and its two Christmas markets are over-the-top enchanting. See the sights on foot with a local expert, or take a behind-the-scenes tour of the Linz opera house and taste cider at an Austrian apple and pear orchard. Your ship sails into Austria, cruising along an especially scenic stretch of the Danube called the Schlögener Schlinge, a great loop where the river almost doubles back on itself, before arriving in Linz. In keeping with the Austrian traditions of good food and good music, Linz gave rise to both the Linzer torte and the Linz Symphony. The torte is a delectable confection, and the symphony is one of Mozart’s most celebrated works. The story goes that the composer was so inspired by the beauty of the city that he finished his Symphony No. 36 in less than a week here in 1783. This vibrant city, the second largest in Austria, has been a center of trade and industry for centuries—and it still inspires artists today.

    Choice of Linz walking discovery tour with Christmas Market or Linz town and cider farm visit with Christmas Market

    Linz walking discovery tour with Christmas Market
    The seductive scents of seasonal treats—gingerbread and Linzer torte, cakes and cookies—waft through the air, and the stalls are full of local craft items at Linz’s two delightful Christmas markets, which are connected by the main shopping thoroughfare and a spectacular light show. Begin at the Main Square, where the stalls are decorated with motifs of Linz landmarks, and follow the illuminations to the Volksgarten, where you’ll find, literally, a fairytale Christmas—large, animated displays of fairytale scenes will entrance the child in you.

    Linz town and cider farm visit with Christmas Market
    The stunningly modern and often indescribable Linz Opera House was built in 2013, boasting a modern façade and contemporary design, designed to fit seamlessly into Linz’s urban landscape. Here, you’ll be treated to a guided backstage tour followed by a stroll through the city’s Old Town. Marvel at the historic Landhaus, a lightly-colored, Renaissance-style government building situated in a corner of Old Town. The former monastery was transformed into a meeting place for Austrian politicians, but still holds on to it 16th-century roots. After your stint at Old Market Square and the Plague Column, you’ll stop for something sweet at Café Jindrak, home of the famous Linzer Torte. Sample the delightful pastry, sip on a cup of delicious Austrian coffee and enjoy your free time in town. Embark on a short ride to the Austrian countryside to a typical, family-owned and operated, “Mostheuriger” farm. Upon arrival, you’ll be welcomed by the owner and the farm’s many critters. They’ll tell you the story of their family, farm and products, and you’ll indulge in a tasting of the region’s most popular drink, cider, and “Brettljause,” a spread of local delicacies. Then, you’ll enjoy a scenic ride through the countryside en route back to the ship.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  6. Day 6 Cruising the Wachau Valley, Durnstein, Vienna

    After a scenic cruise through the beautiful Wachau Valley, we’ll reach the tiny village of Dürnstein. Walk along its cobbled streets, browse the shops selling apricot schnapps, and perhaps take a quick jaunt up to the ruins of a castle (with an intriguing tale all its own). Later, you can taste various mulled wines and attend an organ concert at an Augustine church. Make your way to the lounge this morning to marvel at the scenery of the Wachau Valley, the 19-mile stretch of the Danube that cuts through a rocky gorge amid the foothills of the Bohemian Forest between Melk and Dürnstein. This beautiful region, with steep, densely wooded slopes on the south side of the river and a mixture of crags and vineyards on the north, was declared a World Heritage Landscape by UNESCO. Dotted along the banks are small historic towns and wine-making communities. Some of Austria’s finest white wines are produced from grapes ripened on the terraces that cling to these rocky slopes.

    Featured Excursions:
    Dürnstein village stroll with exclusive spiced wine tasting
    Organ concert in a monastery church

    Masterpiece Collection (for an additional charge): Private Mozart and Strauss concert

    Dürnstein village stroll with exclusive spiced wine tasting
    Considering its diminutive size, the village of Dürnstein offers much to explore. The famous blue baroque tower of the abbey church is doubtless its best-known landmark, but the ruined castle above the town provides its most romantic tale. There Richard the Lionheart was imprisoned until he was found by his faithful bard, Blondel, and ransom could be raised—or so the legend goes. Walk with the Cruise Manager through the Kremser Gate, which dates to the 15th century, and past 16th-, 17th- and 18th-century houses; it’s an up-close look at over 300 years of local architectural styles. The inhabitants of this region have grown apricots and grapes for many centuries, and they have happily turned both into delectable beverages through the years. See what they do with the local wine in winter, as you warm up with a mulled wine tasting after your walk.

    Masterpiece Collection: Private Mozart and Strauss concert
    Duration: 
    4.5 hours     Price: $91 pre-purchase/€79 EUR onboard     Pace: Easy
    Vienna is linked inextricably with music, as so many great composers lived and worked here: Beethoven, Mozart, Strauss, Schubert, Mahler, Brahms—the list is as long as it is glorious. Enjoy an evening of chamber music performed by some of Vienna’s world-class professionals in a historic and intimate concert venue. The music, naturally, will be by Mozart and Strauss.

    *Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences can be added to a booking up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if the booking window is missed, guests can book onboard (space permitting) and pay in Euros. Pre-booked Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are refundable up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if inside of 48 hours they are non-refundable. Select Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences require a minimum number of participants and are subject to cancellation (with full refund) if minimum is not met. Gratuities are included. Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are non-commissionable. Prices are subject to change.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  7. Day 7 Vienna

    The “City of Waltzes” is famous for many things, including world-class art museums, music and architecture (not to mention sinfully rich pastries). See the top sites on a city tour or savor the flavors of the season with our exclusive “Taste of Christmas” guided walking. Whichever option you choose, you’ll also have ample time to explore one of Europe’s greatest Christmas markets. Vienna is a city steeped in history, music and elegant architecture. Mozart, Austria’s most famous citizen, was at the height of his creative powers when he lived here, writing perhaps his best-known works, including The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni and Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. He found Vienna a very inspiring place, and so will you. You’ll have a full day to savor the Christmas spirit in Vienna.

    A special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

    Choice of Vienna city tour with Christmas Market or "Taste of Christmas" Vienna walking tour

    Masterpiece Collection (for an additional charge): Schönbrunn Palace with Christmas market

    Vienna city tour with Christmas Market
    Ring Street, the great horseshoe-shaped boulevard lined with many of the city’s major landmarks—Parliament, City Hall, the Vienna State Opera, and numerous glorious palaces and museums—is a mere 150 years old, practically an infant for a city of Vienna’s age. It replaced the walls that had protected the city for centuries. See all of them on a panoramic tour, then set off on foot for a guided walking tour with a local expert, passing more top sites—such as Hofburg Palace, the Spanish Riding School and St. Stephan’s Cathedral—before stopping to visit the Winter Palace of Prince Eugene, one of the loveliest palace complexes in Vienna. Born in France in 1663, Prince Eugene served the Habsburg emperors for 60 years, commanding their armies and assuring the Habsburg’s dominance throughout Central Europe. Emperor Charles VI rewarded the Prince with honors and wealth. In 2013, his Winter Palace was opened to the public for the first time in centuries. You’ll also have time to explore on your own and to visit Vienna’s most famous Christmas market, situated in front of City Hall, where more than 140 wooden stalls entice you with every sort of delicacy. Be sure to try the rum balls and nutmeg-spiced macaroons, which are local favorites, and roam through the adjacent park to admire the elaborately decorated trees.

    "Taste of Christmas" Vienna walking tour
    A drive along Vienna’s Prater Street and Ring Street provides you with a glimpse of the magnificent buildings that showcased the Habsburgs’ grandeur, ending at St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Stroll with your guide along the Graben, the elegant artery of downtown Vienna, and Kohlmarkt, which is lined with chic shops (don’t miss the dazzling display of holiday confectionary art in the windows of Café Demel, which once supplied Empress Sissi with candied violets), on your way to several delightful Christmas markets. The Am Hof Advent Market features contemporary crafts, ranging from jewelry to knitwear; just a few steps further along, on Freyung Square, is the oldest and most traditional of the city’s markets. Handsome palaces border the triangular square, which is filled with delightful stalls selling Nativity scenes, glass ornaments and handicrafts. Breathe in the aromas of such seasonal treats as roasted chestnuts, hot spiced wine and vanilla crescents, Austria’s most famous Christmas cookie. How can you resist? Luckily, this is the moment and the place to sample these and other holiday specialties! After enjoying some treats here, you’ll walk through the luxe Palais Ferstel shopping arcade to the bustling Christmas Market in front of the City Hall, which you may explore on your own. The afternoon is yours. Spend as long as you like at the Rathaus Christmas Market or venture off to another of the city’s seasonal markets. Of course, there are many other sights to see. Over 100 museums beckon you to delve into their depths. You might wish to visit the Albertina Museum: It houses an incredible collection of graphic arts, including one million old-master prints and an impressive group of works by 19th- and 20th-century painters, ranging from Renoir to Rothko. You could tour the Belvedere, where Klimt’s famous The Kiss is on display. Alternatively, you can encounter Viennese coffeehouse culture at one of the dozens of traditional cafés in Vienna’s Old City.

    Masterpiece Collection: Schönbrunn Palace with Christmas market
    Duration: 
    3.5 hours     Price: $79 pre-purchase/€69 EUR onboard     Pace: Intermediate
    Perhaps the apex of baroque design in Vienna, Schönbrunn was Empress Maria Theresa’s favorite palace, and, beginning in 1740, she made it the social and political center of her empire. Your visit will concentrate on the rooms occupied by Emperor Franz Joseph and his empress, Elisabeth (known as Sissi). Franz Joseph restored the state rooms to their rococo splendor, but his private rooms reflect his rather severe nature, making for an illuminating contrast. You will also have some time to explore the charming Christmas Market set up right in front of the Schönbrunn, which is spectacularly illuminated for the season.

    *Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences can be added to a booking up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if the booking window is missed, guests can book onboard (space permitting) and pay in Euros. Pre-booked Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are refundable up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if inside of 48 hours they are non-refundable. Select Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences require a minimum number of participants and are subject to cancellation (with full refund) if minimum is not met. Gratuities are included. Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are non-commissionable. Prices are subject to change.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner
  8. Day 8 Vienna (Disembark)

    Disembark the ship. If your cruise package includes a group departure transfer, or if you have purchased a private departure transfer, you will be transferred to Vienna International Airport for your flight home.

    meals Breakfast
  1. Day 1 Vienna (Embark)

    Arrive at Vienna International Airport. 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.

    meals Dinner
  2. Day 2 Vienna

    The “City of Waltzes” is famous for many things, including world-class art museums, music and architecture (not to mention sinfully rich pastries). See the top sites on a city tour or savor the flavors of the season with our exclusive “Taste of Christmas” guided walking. Whichever option you choose, you’ll also have ample time to explore one of Europe’s greatest Christmas markets. Vienna is a city steeped in history, music and elegant architecture. Mozart, Austria’s most famous citizen, was at the height of his creative powers when he lived here, writing perhaps his best-known works, including The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni and Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. He found Vienna a very inspiring place, and so will you. You’ll have a full day to savor the Christmas spirit in Vienna.

    A special Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

    Choice of Vienna city tour with Christmas Market or "Taste of Christmas" Vienna walking tour

    Masterpiece Collection (for an additional charge):
    Schönbrunn Palace with Christmas market
    Private Mozart and Strauss concert

    Vienna city tour with Christmas Market
    Ring Street, the great horseshoe-shaped boulevard lined with many of the city’s major landmarks—Parliament, City Hall, the Vienna State Opera, and numerous glorious palaces and museums—is a mere 150 years old, practically an infant for a city of Vienna’s age. It replaced the walls that had protected the city for centuries. See all of them on a panoramic tour, then set off on foot for a guided walking tour with a local expert, passing more top sites—such as Hofburg Palace, the Spanish Riding School and St. Stephan’s Cathedral—before stopping to visit the Winter Palace of Prince Eugene, one of the loveliest palace complexes in Vienna. Born in France in 1663, Prince Eugene served the Habsburg emperors for 60 years, commanding their armies and assuring the Habsburg’s dominance throughout Central Europe. Emperor Charles VI rewarded the Prince with honors and wealth. In 2013, his Winter Palace was opened to the public for the first time in centuries. You’ll also have time to explore on your own and to visit Vienna’s most famous Christmas market, situated in front of City Hall, where more than 140 wooden stalls entice you with every sort of delicacy. Be sure to try the rum balls and nutmeg-spiced macaroons, which are local favorites, and roam through the adjacent park to admire the elaborately decorated trees.

    "Taste of Christmas" Vienna walking tour
    A drive along Vienna’s Prater Street and Ring Street provides you with a glimpse of the magnificent buildings that showcased the Habsburgs’ grandeur, ending at St. Stephen’s Cathedral. Stroll with your guide along the Graben, the elegant artery of downtown Vienna, and Kohlmarkt, which is lined with chic shops (don’t miss the dazzling display of holiday confectionary art in the windows of Café Demel, which once supplied Empress Sissi with candied violets), on your way to several delightful Christmas markets. The Am Hof Advent Market features contemporary crafts, ranging from jewelry to knitwear; just a few steps further along, on Freyung Square, is the oldest and most traditional of the city’s markets. Handsome palaces border the triangular square, which is filled with delightful stalls selling Nativity scenes, glass ornaments and handicrafts. Breathe in the aromas of such seasonal treats as roasted chestnuts, hot spiced wine and vanilla crescents, Austria’s most famous Christmas cookie. How can you resist? Luckily, this is the moment and the place to sample these and other holiday specialties! After enjoying some treats here, you’ll walk through the luxe Palais Ferstel shopping arcade to the bustling Christmas Market in front of the City Hall, which you may explore on your own. The afternoon is yours. Spend as long as you like at the Rathaus Christmas Market or venture off to another of the city’s seasonal markets. Of course, there are many other sights to see. Over 100 museums beckon you to delve into their depths. You might wish to visit the Albertina Museum: It houses an incredible collection of graphic arts, including one million old-master prints and an impressive group of works by 19th- and 20th-century painters, ranging from Renoir to Rothko. You could tour the Belvedere, where Klimt’s famous The Kiss is on display. Alternatively, you can encounter Viennese coffeehouse culture at one of the dozens of traditional cafés in Vienna’s Old City.

    Masterpiece Collection: Schönbrunn Palace with Christmas market
    Duration: 
    3.5 hours     Price: $79 pre-purchase/€69 EUR onboard     Pace: Intermediate
    Perhaps the apex of baroque design in Vienna, Schönbrunn was Empress Maria Theresa’s favorite palace, and, beginning in 1740, she made it the social and political center of her empire. Your visit will concentrate on the rooms occupied by Emperor Franz Joseph and his empress, Elisabeth (known as Sissi). Franz Joseph restored the state rooms to their rococo splendor, but his private rooms reflect his rather severe nature, making for an illuminating contrast. You will also have some time to explore the charming Christmas Market set up right in front of the Schönbrunn, which is spectacularly illuminated for the season.

    *Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences can be added to a booking up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if the booking window is missed, guests can book onboard (space permitting) and pay in Euros. Pre-booked Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are refundable up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if inside of 48 hours they are non-refundable. Select Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences require a minimum number of participants and are subject to cancellation (with full refund) if minimum is not met. Gratuities are included. Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are non-commissionable. Prices are subject to change.

    Masterpiece Collection: Private Mozart and Strauss concert
    Duration: 
    4.5 hours     Price: $91 pre-purchase/€79 EUR onboard     Pace: Easy
    Vienna is linked inextricably with music, as so many great composers lived and worked here: Beethoven, Mozart, Strauss, Schubert, Mahler, Brahms—the list is as long as it is glorious. Enjoy an evening of chamber music performed by some of Vienna’s world-class professionals in a historic and intimate concert venue. The music, naturally, will be by Mozart and Strauss.

    *Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences can be added to a booking up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if the booking window is missed, guests can book onboard (space permitting) and pay in Euros. Pre-booked Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are refundable up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if inside of 48 hours they are non-refundable. Select Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences require a minimum number of participants and are subject to cancellation (with full refund) if minimum is not met. Gratuities are included. Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are non-commissionable. Prices are subject to change.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner
  3. Day 3 Vienna, Dürnstein, Cruising the Wachau Valley

    After a scenic cruise through the beautiful Wachau Valley, we’ll reach the tiny village of Dürnstein. Walk along its cobbled streets, browse the shops selling apricot schnapps, and perhaps take a quick jaunt up to the ruins of a castle (with an intriguing tale all its own). Later, you can taste various mulled wines and attend an organ concert at an Augustine church. Make your way to the lounge this morning to marvel at the scenery of the Wachau Valley, the 19-mile (30-kilometer) stretch of the Danube that cuts through a rocky gorge amid the foothills of the Bohemian Forest between Melk and Dürnstein. This beautiful region, with steep, densely wooded slopes on the south side of the river and a mixture of crags and vineyards on the north, was declared a World Heritage Landscape by UNESCO. Dotted along the banks are small historic towns and winemaking communities. Some of Austria’s finest white wines are produced from grapes ripened on the terraces that cling to these rocky slopes.

    Featured Excursions:
    Dürnstein village stroll with exclusive spiced wine tasting
    Organ concert in monastery church

    Dürnstein village stroll with exclusive spiced wine tasting
    Considering its diminutive size, the village of Dürnstein offers much to explore. The famous blue baroque tower of the abbey church is doubtless its best-known landmark, but the ruined castle above the town provides its most romantic tale. There Richard the Lionheart was imprisoned until he was found by his faithful bard, Blondel, and ransom could be raised—or so the legend goes. Walk with the Cruise Manager through the Kremser Gate, which dates to the 15th century, and past 16th-, 17th- and 18th-century houses; it’s an up-close look at over 300 years of local architectural styles. The inhabitants of this region have grown apricots and grapes for many centuries, and they have happily turned both into delectable beverages through the years. See what they do with the local wine in winter, as you warm up with a mulled wine tasting after your walk.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  4. Day 4 Linz, Cruising the Danube River

    There’s more to Linz than its famous Linzer torte, although that alone makes it well worth a visit. The city has a thriving contemporary art scene, and its two Christmas markets are over-the-top enchanting. See the sights on foot with a local expert, or take a behind-the-scenes tour of the Linz opera house and taste cider at an Austrian apple and pear orchard. Your ship sails into Austria, cruising along an especially scenic stretch of the Danube called the Schlögener Schlinge, a great loop where the river almost doubles back on itself, before arriving in Linz. In keeping with the Austrian traditions of good food and good music, Linz gave rise to both the Linzer torte and the Linz Symphony. The torte is a delectable confection, and the symphony is one of Mozart’s most celebrated works. The story goes that the composer was so inspired by the beauty of the city that he finished his Symphony No. 36 in less than a week here in 1783. This vibrant city, the second largest in Austria, has been a center of trade and industry for centuries—and it still inspires artists today.

    Choice of Linz walking discovery tour with Christmas Market or Linz town and cider farm visit with Christmas Market

    Linz walking discovery tour with Christmas Market
    The seductive scents of seasonal treats—gingerbread and Linzer torte, cakes and cookies—waft through the air, and the stalls are full of local craft items at Linz’s two delightful Christmas markets, which are connected by the main shopping thoroughfare and a spectacular light show. Begin at the Main Square, where the stalls are decorated with motifs of Linz landmarks, and follow the illuminations to the Volksgarten, where you’ll find, literally, a fairytale Christmas—large, animated displays of fairytale scenes will entrance the child in you.

    Linz town and cider farm visit with Christmas Market
    The stunningly modern and often indescribable Linz Opera House was built in 2013, boasting a modern façade and contemporary design, designed to fit seamlessly into Linz’s urban landscape. Here, you’ll be treated to a guided backstage tour followed by a stroll through the city’s Old Town. Marvel at the historic Landhaus, a lightly-colored, Renaissance-style government building situated in a corner of Old Town. The former monastery was transformed into a meeting place for Austrian politicians, but still holds on to it 16th-century roots. After your stint at Old Market Square and the Plague Column, you’ll stop for something sweet at Café Jindrak, home of the famous Linzer Torte. Sample the delightful pastry, sip on a cup of delicious Austrian coffee and enjoy your free time in town. Embark on a short ride to the Austrian countryside to a typical, family-owned and operated, “Mostheuriger” farm. Upon arrival, you’ll be welcomed by the owner and the farm’s many critters. They’ll tell you the story of their family, farm and products, and you’ll indulge in a tasting of the region’s most popular drink, cider, and “Brettljause,” a spread of local delicacies. Then, you’ll enjoy a scenic ride through the countryside en route back to the ship.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  5. Day 5 Passau, Deggendorf (Theresienthal)

    Is that the sound of…jingle bells? Yes indeed, but that’s not Santa’s sleigh you’re hearing, it’s a horse-drawn wagon whisking you through the densely wooded Bavarian Forest. This area is known for glass-making, which you’ll observe close up at a famous workshop. Onward to Passau, a lovely place to take a stroll and visit the local Christmas market, followed by a traditional Bavarian dinner served in a festively decorated barn. Begin the day in the beautiful Bavarian Forest, known as the green roof of Europe, and then explore historic Passau, the three-river city on the Austrian border.

    Featured Excursions:
    Exclusive Bavarian Forest village with Theresienthal glass manufactory visit
    Passau walking discovery tour with Christmas Market

    Exclusive Bavarian Forest village with Theresienthal glass manufactory visit
    Want to know what it feels like to live in a Christmas card illustration? Find out as you snuggle down in toasty blankets for a brisk ride in a horse-drawn wagon (or, if there’s snow, a horse-drawn sleigh) through the wonderland that is the Bavarian Forest in December. The largest nature preserve in Europe, the Bavarian Forest is home to lynxes and river otters, among other rare species, as well as miles of ski trails. It is also home to a long tradition of glassmaking; the famous ruby-red Bohemian lead-crystal glass is made here. See this tradition at work with a visit to the world-renowned glass manufacturer Theresienthal. The company fell on hard times and was forced to close for a short time in the late 20th century, but it was rescued by its employees. Some of the craftspeople—wood turners, glassblowers, engravers and painters—you’ll see at work are fourth- or fifth-generation Theresienthal artisans. You can peruse the exquisite glassware in the adjacent shop—just in case someone on your Christmas list loves fine glassware—and visit the glass museum, where you’ll find a renowned collection of glassware representing some of the pieces Theresienthal made for the courts of Europe in the 19th century.

    Note: On rare occasions, Theresienthal must empty and refit its ovens. During such times, glass-blowing demonstrations are unavailable; passengers will still enjoy a visit to the workshop and an explanation of glass making and engraving techniques.

    Passau walking discovery tour with Christmas Market
    Join your guide for a stroll through picturesque lanes in the heart of Passau, stopping at the Town Hall to see its magnificent atrium, which boasts several massive works by the famous German painter Ferdinand Wagner, and pausing to admire the beautiful rococo stairway of the bishop’s New Residence. After much of the town burned to the ground in 1662 and again in 1680, the reconstruction involved many Italian artists, who gave Passau the baroque and rococo touches you see everywhere. Monumental St. Stephan’s Cathedral, built in glorious baroque style, forms the backdrop for the Passau Christmas Market. You’ll find a lot to enjoy here—from miniature Bavarian houses and blown-glass ornaments to spun-sugar confections—in more than 70 stalls. At times, the Passau Christmas Market also features demonstrations by local craftspeople, such as glassblowers, candle makers, wood carvers and confectioners, so you can buy your gifts from the people who made them.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  6. Day 6 Regensburg

    The Old Town of Regensburg sparkles with holiday lights and decorations this time of year, adding to its already considerable charms. Check out the best and brightest cultural sights, then head to what may very well be the most romantic Christmas market in all of Germany, nestled within the courtyard of a beautiful baroque castle. “Regensburg is so beautifully situated; this region had to attract a town,” Goethe wrote in his Diary of an Italian Voyage. And attract a town it did. In fact, it first attracted the armies of ancient Rome, who founded the town in about the year 100. The town thrived, not just because of its beautiful location, but also because ambitious and farseeing locals built a bridge over the Danube in the 12th century. The Stone Bridge helped Regensburg become an international trading hub and, at one time, the capital of Bavaria. So many of the handsome buildings from that period remain that UNESCO declared the old city center a World Heritage Site.

    Featured Excursion: “2,000 Years in One Hour” Regensburg walking discovery tour with enchanting Christmas Market in the Thurn and Taxis Castle

    “2,000 Years in One Hour” Regensburg walking discovery tour with enchanting Christmas Market in the Thurn and Taxis Castle
    Old-town Regensburg sparkles with holiday lights and decorations at this time of year, adding to its enormous charm. As you walk through the cobbled lanes of the UNESCO-designated city center, Regensburg’s 2,000-year history is revealed: The ancient Roman gate still stands, as do the Stone Bridge, the Gothic town hall where the Imperial Diet met for three centuries, the 13th-century fortified patrician houses, and the spectacular Cathedral of St. Peter, whose magnificent 14th-century stained-glass windows alone are worth your walk. At the end of your tour, you’ll find yourself at what may be the most romantic Christmas market in all of Germany: the one laid out in the courtyard of the Thurn and Taxis Castle. A glorious baroque palace enfolds the square, where branch-thatched huts sell handcrafted local wares and Bavarian delicacies. There’s always a nearby bonfire where you can warm up while you sip your mulled wine or nibble a hot pastry. The princely Thurn and Taxis family has owned the palace for centuries, and Princess Gloria (once known as the punk princess for her youthful escapades) may come out to read a Christmas story to an audience of children.

    The rest of the day is yours to spend as you wish. Christmas markets are set up in the area around the 500-year-old Neupfarrkirche (a market that has been voted the loveliest in Germany), in front of the classical columns of the former city guardhouse and in the Kohlenmarkt, where artisans and craftspeople sell handmade dolls, marionettes, pottery and other fine-quality wares. Shop for children’s toys or traditional Nativity scenes with hand-carved figures. As you take in the delights of the markets, enjoy regional specialties, such as mulled blueberry wine from the Bavarian Forest, Regensburg sausages on crisp rolls, steamed dampfnudel (dumplings with vanilla sauce) and mulled cider.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  7. Day 7 Roth, Nuremberg

    For a truly over-the-top holiday extravaganza, look no further than Nuremberg, which boasts the largest and grandest Christmas Market in all of Germany—and that’s really saying something. The “Gingerbread Capital of the World” pulls out all the stops during the holidays, as you’ll see for yourself on a panoramic tour guaranteed to put you in a festive mood. You could not ask for a more perfect place to begin an exploration of Christmas traditions than Nuremberg. The people of Nuremberg hold their Christkindlesmarkt very close to their hearts. The iconic Christkind, with her white-and-gold dress, long blond curls and golden crown, has been the symbol for the Christmas Market for many decades. During Advent, she is the most important representative of the city; every year she opens the Christmas Market by declaring: “Welcome, young and old, to my little community of wood and cloth. While this market’s splendor is fleeting, the joy it brings is eternal.” And with that declaration, the market festivities begin in a town that is famous for its gingerbread and its long toy-making tradition.

    A special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

    Featured Excursions: Nuremberg city tour with Christmas Market

    Masterpiece Collection (for an additional charge): Nuremberg WWII historical tour

    Nuremberg city tour with Christmas Market
    Beautiful at any time, Nuremberg’s Old Town is especially magical when dressed in all of its holiday splendor. Unfortunately, the city’s history also has a dark side, as you will see on a panoramic tour that shows you places where Hitler celebrated the might of his Third Reich—the Rally Grounds and the never-finished coliseum, Congress Hall—before you reach Old Town, where you’ll find the archetypal medieval German city. Stroll through the castle gardens and enjoy breathtaking views of the city, then walk through a maze of cobblestone lanes down to the central Market Square. There, spread out before the Church of Our Lady, is the largest Christmas market in Germany. Two hundred stalls filled with holiday wares—ornaments, nutcrackers, seasonal treats and hand-carved toys—await you, and the irresistible aromas of roasting nuts, cinnamon and grilled sausages waft through the air. Adding to the fun is an area set aside especially for children, complete with a two-tiered carousel featuring carved reindeer and Santa’s sleigh. As you wander through the market, you will certainly want to indulge in some of the city’s famous gingerbread; after all, Nuremberg is known as the “Gingerbread Capital of the World.” Shuttles are available to take you to and from the ship.

    Masterpiece Collection: Nuremberg WWII historical tour
    Duration: 
    4 hours     Price: $59 pre-purchase/€52 EUR onboard     Pace: Intermediate
    Hitler considered Nuremberg the perfect expression of German culture and chose it as the location for his massive rallies and most grandiose building schemes. Visit the Party Rally Grounds and the Documentation Center’s exhibit on the rise and fall of the Nazis, and see the Nuremberg Memoriam, which gives you a view of Courtroom 600, where 21 Nazi war criminals were tried in 1945—it remains an active courtroom and cannot be viewed during court proceedings, though the displays, including pieces of the original dock, can be seen.

    *Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences can be added to a booking up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if the booking window is missed, guests can book onboard (space permitting) and pay in Euros. Pre-booked Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are refundable up to 48 hours prior to the cruise/tour start date–if inside of 48 hours they are non-refundable. Select Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences require a minimum number of participants and are subject to cancellation (with full refund) if minimum is not met. Gratuities are included. Masterpiece Collection Optional Experiences are non-commissionable. Prices are subject to change.

    meals Breakfast, Lunch, Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner
  8. Day 8 Nuremberg (Disembark)

    Disembark the ship. If your cruise package includes a group departure transfer, or if you have purchased a private departure transfer, you will be transferred to Nuremberg Airport for your flight home.

    meals Breakfast
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Price Includes

Dining

  • All meals onboard, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients
  • 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
  • Captain’s Welcome and Farewell Receptions
  • Welcome and Farewell Gala Dinners
  • Unlimited beverages onboard, including fine wine, beer, spirits, specialty coffee and tea, soft drinks and mineral water

Accommodations

  • 7-night cruise in a riverview stateroom on the majestic S.S. Beatrice
  • Lavishly appointed riverview staterooms and suites have handcrafted Savoir® of England beds, high-thread count 100% Egyptian cotton sheets and European duvets, and a menu of pillow options
  • Free Internet and Wi-Fi access

Excursions

  • 6 days of excursions, including “Choice Is Yours” options, all fully hosted by English-speaking local experts
  • Guided “Taste of Christmas” program
  • State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio-headset system on all excursions
  • Use of Nordic walking sticks

Experiences

  • 2 countries: Austria, Germany
  • 3 UNESCO World Heritage sites
  • Services of an experienced Uniworld Cruise Manager
  • All transfers on arrival and departure days
  • Captivating onboard local entertainment
  • Cultural enrichment, including a Signature Lecture

All fares are per guest in US Dollars based on double occupancy unless otherwise noted.

Fares are capacity controlled and are subject to change at any time without notice.

Availability of all stateroom categories cannot be guaranteed.

Single Supplement applies for single accommodation.

Itineraries, hotels, and vessels may change, and substitute visits to other sites may occur during your trip due to water level fluctuations and other uncontrollable factors.

The order of sightseeing and docking ports are subject to change according to port authority assignments.

Prices exclude additional port charges of $170 per person

Dates & Prices
Airfare is not included, but can be added to quote upon request
Classic French Balcony Deluxe French Balcony Suite Grand Suite Availability Price
Ship Information
DELIGHTFULLY DIVINE

River Beatrice has reemerged as S.S. Beatrice, after undergoing an extensive bow-to-stern renovation. This jewel of a ship made her debut bearing an inspired, sleek look, graceful redesigned bow, updated lounge and the most elegant grand staircase. Be one of the first to cruise on the lavishly refined S.S. Beatrice.

STUNNING NEW FEATURES

Additional five-star dining venues with a private space for group dining

A new grand suite

Two new royal suites measuring 390 square feet

Several adjoining rooms, perfect for families traveling together

Click HERE to view a pdf of ship facts (and click HERE to download software to open a pdf file).

 

Inaugurated: 2009
Renovated: 2018
Guests: 152
Staff: 55

Royal Suites: 2 (390 sq ft)
Grand Suites: 2 (310 sq ft)
Suites: 12 (225 sq ft)
Deluxe French Balcony: 13 (150 sq ft)
French Balcony: 37 (150 sq ft)
Classic: 10 (150 sq ft)

Length: 430 ft
Width: 37.5 ft
Voltage: 110/220 volts

 

SUITE

Luxurious riverview suite (225 sq ft - 21 sq m)

Suite includes a handcrafted Savoir® of England beds, built-in closets, hair dryer, safe, direct-dial telephone, individual thermostat, flat-screen TV with infotainment center

Marble bathroom with Hermés bath and body products, plush towels, backlit magnifying mirror, cozy bathrobes and slippers

 

DELUXE FRENCH BALCONY

Luxurious riverview stateroom (150 sq ft - 14 sq m) with a French balcony

Handcrafted Savoir® of England beds, built-in closets, hair dryer, safe, individual climate-controlled thermostat, direct-dial telephone, and flat-screen TV with infotainment center, mineral water

Marble bathroom with Asprey bath and body products, plush towels, backlit magnifying mirror, cozy bathrobes and slippers

 

FRENCH BALCONY

Luxurious riverview stateroom (150 sq ft - 14 sq m) with a French balcony

Handcrafted Savoir® of England beds, built-in closets, hair dryer, safe, individual climate-controlled thermostat, direct-dial telephone, and flat-screen TV with infotainment center, mineral water

Marble bathroom with Asprey bath and body products, plush towels, backlit magnifying mirror, cozy bathrobes and slippers

 

Our meticulously designed ships feature enticing public areas and luxurious amenities, including a lounge with full-service bar, well-equipped fitness center, restaurant, Serenity River Spa, and a Sun Deck where you can relax and take in the ever-changing views. 

We are excited to introduce our newest Super Ship — S.S. Beatrice. The S.S. Beatrice boasts yacht-style light wood with blue and white finishes throughout, a renovated lobby featuring elegant mirrors, marble floors, a white Murano chandelier with blue shades, and a grand staircase made of nickel and black iron – a signature design element of Uniworld’s Super Ships. The ship’s redesigned lounge features sofas and chairs with hand-made upholstery, a parquet floor and upholstered ceiling panels, solar shades, and new USB ports allowing guests to charge anywhere they are sitting. The artwork throughout the ship includes pieces from Pablo Picasso, Alexander Calder and Pino Signoretto.

S.S. Beatrice offers four dining options all inspired by famous Austrian composers, including Mozart’s, the ship’s main restaurant; Wolfgang’s bar and lounge and newly added Schubert’s and Max’s. For guests seeking an immersive culinary experience, Max’s restaurant offers intimate cooking classes where guests can create local European cuisines alongside the chef. Schubert’s, an 18-seat café located at the bow of the ship, offers guests shared plates from lunch through dinnertime. The cozy Austrian-styled eatery features menus reflecting the cuisine of the ship’s destinations.

Additionally, S.S. Beatrice has two new Grand Suites each measuring 310 square feet and a second 390 square foot Owner’s/Royal Suite. Connecting rooms, ideal for friends and families traveling together, have also been added.

Reviews
Service
Vacation
Independent Reviews
Trusted Customer
Sunday, January 11, 2015
Service
Very responsive to all requests and inquiries.
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you for your feedback! Dee-Grand European Travel
Tuesday, January 13, 2015
Vacation
Excellent
Trusted Customer
Saturday, December 13, 2014
Service
The service was good and pleasant. Very helpful.
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you so much for your feedback. I'm happy that you enjoyed the Holiday Market Cruise. What a great time of year to visit Germany and Austria! I can't blame you for wanting to go back. Just let us know when you're ready to book! Dee-Grand European Travel
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Vacation
I was very impressed with our cruise director Bart. When the cruise was delayed because of one of the locks on the Danube river breaking, Bart went above and beyond to make sure that we were still able to go on our day trips and to make sure we got where we needed to go to make it home. All the staff was courteous and helpful. I want to take this particular cruise again I had that much fun.
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