The Best Viking Cruises on the Danube and Rhine Rivers
With captivating scenery, European history, unique culture, and a taste of luxury, what’s not to love about a Viking River Cruise? If you are trying to decide which Viking Cruise is right for you, you have come to the right place. Read on to discover the best Viking Cruises on the Danube and Rhine Rivers.
Danube Viking River Cruises
This Viking River Cruise begins in the vibrant city of Budapest, where you can enjoy the natural thermal baths and historical sites, such as Castle Hill and Matthias Church. After two days in Budapest, you will sail down the Danube River to Bratislava, Slovakia. This baroque city showcases stunning palaces and an impressive castle. The following cruise stop, Vienna, Austria, is known as “the city of music.” You will see famous sites like the Opera House, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, and the Hofberg Palace. The cruise will then sail to smaller Austrian towns, such as Krems and Linz. Finally, you’ll get to learn about Bavaria’s rich history in Passau, Germany.
The Romantic Danube Cruise begins in Budapest, Hungary, where you will explore historical sites such as the National Opera House, Parliament Building, and iconic Chain Bridge. From Budapest, you can enjoy the cruise along the beautiful Danube River, while also getting the opportunity to enjoy a Viennese coffee workshop, which includes apple strudel.
Vienna, Austria, the next stop, is where you will spend two days enjoying the culture, coffee, and history that the city has to offer. After enjoying Vienna’s culture, you will visit Krems, Austria, where you can explore historical areas or take a scenic bike ride. The ship will then make its way to Passau, Germany, offering colorful buildings, local farms, and German beer. This cruise ends in Regensburg, Germany, which is one of the most well-preserved medieval cities in Europe.
Rhine Viking River Cruise
This Rhine Viking Cruise begins in Amsterdam. Enjoy the charming canals, lush gardens, and abundance of bicycles everywhere you go. Cruise along the Rhine River and stop in Kinderdijk, another Netherlands city that offers background on the history of windmills and a windmill tour.
After this short stop, enjoy the ride to Cologne, Germany. Explore the Roman heritage, ancient ruins, and feast on traditional German food and beer. The following stops include the smaller towns of Koblenz & Rudesheim, Germany, where you can take a stroll through fortresses, castles, and winding streets. The last stop in Germany, Speyer is where you can tour the Heidelburg Castle, Speyer Cathedral, and the well-preserved old town.
After Speyer, you will arrive in Strasbourg, France. With a guided tour, relish in the blend of French and German culture, and discover historical churches, covered bridges, and gorgeous parks. The next town is Breisach, Germany, which has one of the warmest climates and best scenery in the area. Take an excursion through the nearby mountains and forests, or enjoy some World War II history. The cruise concludes in Basel, Switzerland, also known as the Gateway to the Swiss Rhineland.
Combined Danube and Rhine Viking Cruises
Beginning in Amsterdam, this 15-day cruise includes 12 guided tours and four different countries, making this the ultimate Viking Cruise. Relish in the charm of Amsterdam, from its winding canals to beautiful gardens. From there, you’ll cruise down the Rhine River and stop in Kinderdijk, where you can learn more about the windmill industry.
The cruise then makes its way through several areas in Germany, the first one being Cologne. Discover the history behind this city’s ancient ruins and Roman heritage. The next stop is Koblenz, Germany, where you can visit the stunning Marksburg Castle, the only Rhine fortress never destroyed. Miltenburg, the following German stop, specializes in wine-making. Join a walking tour that will end with free time to explore on your own. Cruise to the next stop, Wurzburg, and take a tour of the Bishops’ Residence, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The ship will then go to Bamberg, Germany, a charming and medieval city known for its symphony orchestra. Nuremberg is the following city, where you will have time to explore the lovely old town, filled with shops and restaurants. Cruise further down the Danube and adventure through Regensburg, one of the best-kept medieval cities in Europe and the oldest city on this river. The last stop in Germany is the town of Passau, where you can enjoy the narrow streets of the ancient town and sites such as St. Stephan’s Cathedral.
Enjoy the ride down the scenic Danube and enter Austria, where you will first explore Melk and then make your way to the vibrant city of Vienna. The cruise will end with two days of sightseeing in Budapest.
Paris to the Swiss Alps
Before boarding your cruise ship, you will arrive in Paris, France, for a two-night stay. The tour starts with a scenic drive along the Seine River, where you will see legendary sites, such as the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre, and the Champs-Elysees. On Day 3, you’ll stop in Reims, France, for a visit to Reims Cathedral.
The ship will continue cruising to Trier and Bernkastel in Germany. Trier is Germany’s oldest city, so this is an excellent place for history-lovers. You will dock in Bernkastel and have time to enjoy the winding stone streets and an optional wine-tasting tour. The next stop, Cochem, Germany, is home to the best Rieslings in the world. Enjoy the local wineries and learn about wine-making history. This cruise will continue to make stops throughout charming German towns, such as Koblenz, Mainz, and Speyer.
After leaving Germany, the ship will make its way into France, first stopping at the cultural center of the Alsace region, Strasbourg. With picturesque canals and cathedrals, you will be charmed by this city. You will then spend time in Zurich and Basel, Switzerland, where you can enjoy the thriving art scene, stunning architecture, and beautiful waters.
With medieval villages, educational museums, authentic cuisine, and breathtaking scenery, a Viking Cruise is the best way to tour Europe. Whether you are cruising the Danube, the Rhine, or both of these rivers, there is a perfect Viking Cruise for everyone.
Here are some links to some of the most popular European Cruises: