Luxury River Cruising in Europe
Luxury European River cruises combine elegance with visits to the many small towns along the river's edge. This gives travellers the opportunity to experience the country's true culture firsthand.
With Amadeus Waterways your European vacation begins in Paris, the City of Lights, where passengers spend several days exploring the city, viewing the landmarks the city is known for. Stroll along Champs Elysées, the boutique-lined boulevards, or visit the Eiffel Tower. Travellers witness history up close as the ship glides along the Rhine and Main River.
Then onward to Nessebar, one of the oldest towns in Europe, before rejoining the cruise in Romania. The cruise ship sails along the Romanian/ Bulgarian border before continuing to Serbia. Towards the end of the journey guests can enjoy a full day of cruising through one of Europe's most impressive natural wonders, the Iron Gates. The vacation concludes in historic Istanbul.
The trip includes 14 nights of deluxe accommodation in an outside stateroom. Rooms are equipped with Internet, movies and a Music Library.
2. Viking River cruises - 2009 Treasures of the Rhine
This 15-day voyage visits five countries along the legendary Rhine River. The journey begins in Switzerland's Basle region, and continues through the Black Forest region of Germany and France's Strasbourg.
On the banks of the Rhine the ship stops in the famous wine town of Rudesheim and lovely Cologne. A highlight of the journey is the guided tour of the city of Strasbourg. See the Place d'Austerlitz and European Parliament, and enjoy the city's famed cathedral up close.
On the fifth day guests travel in a motorcoach to Heidelberg. A guided tour includes Heidelberg Castle, a red sandstone ruin overlooking the Neckar River.
Then - onward to the Netherlands to explore Amsterdam's picturesque canals. In Amsterdam travellers are given the opportunity to enjoy a glass-topped canal cruise past merchant houses and the famed Skinny Bridge.
In Belgium travellers can discover the medieval cities of Bruges and Antwerp.
3. Evergreen tours - Imperial Jewels of Russia
How does an Imperial Jewels of Russia River Cruise sound? Guests enjoy a 12 night cruise onboard the Ms Surkov, the most luxurious river cruise ship in Russia. Explore some of the world's most fascinating yet relatively undiscovered destinations.
Uncover Russian History, the imposing Red Square and the Kremlin and encounter ancient towns along the river Volga.
Commencing in St. Petersburg guests are transferred to their luxury river cruise ship. The trip begins with a tour of this stunning city including the impressive Peter and Paul Fortress. The cathedral within the fortress houses the tombs of the last Romanov family.
The tour continues on to Nevsky Prospect, where guests can view the Cathedral of Kazan, the Winter Palace and St. Isaac's Cathedral.
A highlight of the journey is a UNESCO World Heritage Site - Kizhi Island. One of the most ancient sites in Russia, the island is an open-air architectural museum housing significant buildings.
Upon docking in Moscow, passengers visit the famed Bolshoi Theatre and Red Square.
4. Blue Water Holidays - Andalusian Holiday
Blue Water Holidays offers a cruise through the historic Andalusia region of Spain, the home of sherry, flamenco, mountains, and the Costa del Sol. This eight day cruise sails between Seville and Cadiz along the River Guadalquivir and the Spanish coast.
This fabulous journey includes excursions to historic sites and cities. Some optional excursions are also available to towns such as Jerez, home of sherry and the flamenco, the City of Seville and the Rock of Gibraltar.
Passengers are provided with seven nights of cruise accommodation in an outside stateroom, superb dining with all meals included during, unlimited quality red and white wines from Europe's great wine regions with every dinner, a Cocktail Reception and a Captain's Gala Dinner.
5. Luftner Cruises - Music on the Danube
Most of the world's greatest classical music has originated from a small area in central Europe. Why not take a river cruise down the Danube to explore the musical origins of the genre?
With Luftner Cruises travellers can enjoy a music cruise of the Danube River. The cruise is peppered with a variety of musical extravaganzas, from a concert at the Beethoven-house in Bonn to a tour in Strasbourg that includes a concert in the St. Thomas church.
Entertained by the singers of the London Festival Opera, the journey includes two full days in Budapest as well as a visit to the Slovakian capital of Bratislava. Whilst in the Wachau Valley, Vienna and Budapest the itinerary includes a number of guided excursions.
A river cruise such as this is tantamount to a floating hotel that travels through the very heart of Europe.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Karen Cooke is a professional consultant with Travel Associates, an exclusive Australian travel agency catering to the premium travel market. More helpful travel tips and suggestions are available at http://www.travel-associates.com.au.