The Danube sets the stage for a truly incredible voyage. This storied waterway winds its way through ten countries, each offering a vantage point like no other to the old-world charm and modern allure of the continent’s diverse cultures. Witness the natural beauty, grand cities, and quaint villages that line the banks of Europe’s second-longest river.

From the lush vineyards of Austria’s Wachau Valley to the architectural wonders along its riverbank, the Danube offers a unique and memorable river cruising experience. Expect to discover treasures and scenic landscapes that have inspired artists, poets, and musicians for centuries.

Grand Cities

As you sail along the Danube, prepare to be enticed by the grandeur of the cities that have risen from its banks. Each one provides a glimpse into the soul of Central and Eastern Europe, delivered with all the ease that river cruising has to offer.

Among them is Vienna, a city synonymous with classical music and imperial history. The Austrian capital is abundant with opulent palaces, and a vibrant scene that captures the elegance of bygone empires. Wander past the majestic Hofburg Palace and let the melodies of Mozart and Strauss serenade you in a historic concert hall.

Dubbed the ‘Pearl of the Danube,’ Budapest’s magnificent skyline is crowned by the Gothic Revival spires of the Hungarian Parliament Building. Explore thermal baths, cross the iconic Chain Bridge, or simply marvel at the panoramic views from Fisherman’s Bastion.

Bratislava is also well worth exploring. With its charming old town and brooding castle that oversees the city, this Slovakian masterpiece brings together medieval history with a young, dynamic energy. Meander through narrow lanes and discover cosy cafes, or delve into the vibrant art scene with galleries and street murals.

Remote Towns & Villages

Away from the bustling capitals that usually draw the crowds, there exists an array of unusual destinations full of their own unique stories and experiences. Embrace the distinctive blend of history and scenic beauty that these lesser-known destinations have to offer.

Nestled on the banks of the Danube, Vukovar is a poignant symbol of resilience and renewal. Known for its Baroque buildings, water tower, and the Vukovar Hospital, the city’s recent history is a touching story of perseverance. Today, it invites exploration of its serene riverfront and rich heritage, making it a poignant and reflective stop in Croatia on a Danube river cruise.

Famed as the ‘Little Vienna’ of Bulgaria, Rousse’s architecture and charm pay homage to its moniker. This city combines Bulgarian history with an Austro-Hungarian architectural legacy, offering a fascinating insight into its cultural fusion. The Freedom Square and Rousse Regional Historical Museum provide glimpses into the local heritage, while its position on the river makes it a picturesque stop.

Belgrade stands where the Danube meets the Sava River, ensuring a dynamic urban experience steeped in history. Famous for its vibrant nightlife, the city also boasts the imposing Belgrade Fortress, the historical Kalemegdan Park, and a jigsaw of traditions that have shaped the city over millennia. Belgrade’s energetic atmosphere, combined with its historical depth, makes it an extraordinary port of call on a voyage along the Danube.


Embarking on a Danube river cruise guarantees an extraordinary cultural encounter, no matter where you choose to sail. The stretch between Nuremberg and Budapest demonstrates Europe’s heritage, blending historical narratives with long lasting traditions.

In the German port of Nuremberg, both medieval and modern history are evident around every corner. Home to historic castles, poignant WWII tribunals, and vibrant Christmas markets, Nuremberg is also famed for its artistic contributions, including Albrecht Dürer’s masterpieces.

The journey continues to Regensburg, a UNESCO-listed city with a well-preserved medieval centre. Here, the ancient tells tales of Roman times, and Bavarian folk music enlivens its taverns and courtyards, offering a deep dive into local traditions.

Passau, known as the ‘Three Rivers City’, impresses with its baroque St. Stephen’s Cathedral and the world’s largest cathedral organ, blending the influences of nearby Austria and the Czech Republic. In Austria’s Wachau Valley, Melk Abbey stands as a beacon of monastic scholarship and art, with its impressive Baroque architecture and remarkable library.

Stunning Scenery

A Danube river cruise is abundant with incredible landscapes at every turn, with the Wachau Valley and Danube Bend offering some of the most striking you’ll encounter.

The Wachau Valley, a celebrated UNESCO World Heritage site, presents vistas of steeply terraced vineyards renowned for producing Austria’s premium wines. There is no finer place to savour the region’s renowned Rieslings and Grüner Veltliners.

The Danube Bend is a region of extraordinary natural beauty, where the river carves a dramatic arc through the heart of the Hungarian landscape. Here, the Danube’s waters wend their way through hills and cliffs, offering an ever-changing scenic backdrop that is best admired from your river cruise ship.

As you look out at the passing scenery, spot medieval fortresses and castle ruins that perch atop verdant ridges, standing guard over the river as they have done for centuries. The lush forests and rocky outcrops of the surrounding terrain are mirrored in the glassy expanse of the water, as charming towns and villages dot the riverbanks, displaying colourful facades and historic architecture.

Art & History

A Danube river cruise is an inspiring journey for history and art enthusiasts. The river, often referred to as Europe’s cultural artery, flows past intriguing destinations, each narrating tales from its past. The banks of the Danube showcase an evolution of architectural styles over centuries, including everything such as Roman ruins and Gothic cathedrals, to Baroque palaces and avant-garde structures.

The Danube holds visual tales of European history that are just waiting to be discovered. Maybe you will visit the 13th-century UNESCO-listed Czech old town of Český Krumlovshowcasing extraordinary buildings, or encounter the world’s largest church organ at St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Passau. And don’t forget the lavish Schönbrunn Palace, once the imperial summer residence of the Habsburg monarchs, the Danube holds visual tales of European history that are just waiting to be discovered.

As you delve into the historical significance of this epic river, be prepared to encounter some of the most breathtaking views en route. With experts by your side, expect to be enthralled with narratives that go beyond the history books and share local secrets that remain undisclosed to many.

Each day will be filled with exploration – uncovering fascinating history and art across capital cities, quaint towns and various historical landmarks scattered along the riverbanks. By evening, you’ll swap tales with your fellow guests in anticipation of another fun-filled day on shore.

Landmarks of Interest

The Danube will usher you into a panoramic gallery of living history and architectural grandeur, as you sail past a procession of landmarks steeped in lore and beauty.

Budapest’s famous chain bridge welcomes you to the ‘Pearl of the Danube’, home to the awe-inspiring neo-gothic Parliament. The Wachau Valley unveils its fairytale town, Durnstein, and its striking blue clock tower, a baroque jewel that dates back to 1372.

Vienna unveils its Gothic masterpiece, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, and an abundance of grand palaces featuring sculpted gardens and baroque elegance. Hohensalzburg Fortress looms on the horizon, a testament to Salzburg’s medieval past, surveying the skyline with historical gravitas.

Culinary Delights

Sailing the Danube offers a gastronomic adventure that indulges your palate with diverse flavours symbolising centuries of culinary traditions. The journey presents an exciting opportunity to savour a wide array of cuisines and sample unique beverages.

In Austria, you’ll journey through the vineyards of the Wachau Valley, renowned for its exceptional wines. Here, intimate wine tastings invite you to experience the aromatic grace of Grüner Veltliners and resplendent Rieslings that reflect the region’s unique characteristics. Small, family-run wineries showcase their passion for wine-making, turning every sip into a story of tradition. Further along the river, Austria offers a taste of its infamous ‘liquid gold’ – apricot schnapps, especially in regions like Krems where apricots are a local delicacy.

As you transit into Germany, the landscape is marked by beer gardens and breweries in cities like Regensburg. A visit to one of the local breweries provides an exciting opportunity to sample traditionally brewed German lagers and pilsners, delving into the legacy of Bavarian brewing. Meanwhile, aromatic freshly baked strudels, goulash simmering with paprika’s warmth in Hungary, and stuffed dumplings from Slovak kitchens, make for a sensory-rich, edible narrative of the region’s history and lifestyle.

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