Christmastime from Vienna to Basel 2020
Christmastime from Vienna to Basel 2020
Operator: Avalon Waterways
Starts: Vienna, Austria on Thu, Dec 03, 2020
Ends: Basel, Switzerland on Fri, Dec 18, 2020
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Exclusive: PrePaid Gratuities on 2020 Europe & Mekong river cruises
Exclusive: PrePaid Gratuities on 2020 Europe & Mekong river cruises
*Book a select 2020 Avalon Europe or Mekong river cruise (excluding 2020 Oberammergau) and get the standard prepaid cruise gratuities included for the full length of the cruise portion of the vacation. Booking must be made, under deposit and discount applied between January 1 and December 31, 2020 for travel commencing between January 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020. Combinable with other current promotions. Applies to new 2020 bookings only. Must mention promotion code ENSGRAT20. Offer reliant on space availability. Not applicable to groups or custom tours. Full cancellation penalties will apply. Additional restrictions may apply; see Travel Terms & Conditions for details. May be withdrawn at any time.
Up to $500 Welcome Back Credit for Repeat Travelers
Up to $500 Welcome Back Credit for Repeat Travelers
- Spend $2499 or less and receive $100 credit
- Spend $2500 - $3499 and receive $150 credit
- Spend $3500 - $4499 and receive $200 credit
- Spend $4500 & Over and receive $250 credit
The Welcome Back Credit will be awarded upon completion of Globus family of brands vacations from 2019 onward. Credit amount can only be applied to the land/cruise or cruise only portion of a new Globus family of brands vacation (excluding Escapes by Globus, 2020 Oberammergau, select Cosmos tours, Monograms City Getaways, and Custom/Charter vacations). Credit amount is per person and must be redeemed for a future vacation with a deposit within 2 years from date of credit issue. Bookings can be made by contacting your preferred travel agent. Passenger name or past invoice number is required to redeem the credit. Combinable with all applicable consumer promotions except those with any Globus family of brands special discount programs of the vacation price. Credit is not redeemable for cash, non-refundable deposit, airfare, transfers, travel insurance, prepaid gratuities, pre/post nights, or optional excursions and is non-transferrable. All federal, state and local laws and regulations apply. Valid for all participating Globus family of brands offices. Additional restrictions may apply.
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Open a gift wrapped in glowing lights and sights of the inviting beauty of Christmas markets on the Danube River. Embark on special departures for the festive season in Europe’s most beautiful Christmas markets and festivities. Enjoy the jolly atmosphere on our decorated Suite Ships® as you delight in the sights, smells, and tastes of local Christmas traditions along your Danube River cruise. Enjoy stunning winter views on the Danube with the warm glow of Christmas markets, beautifully adorned with ageless traditions. Savor the special views of the season by embarking in Vienna with a culinary tour in the Christmas markets of the City of Music. Sail through the wonderful Wachau Valley with visits to Melk’s magnificent Benedictine Abbey perched above the Danube. In Passau, browse through the shining Christmas markets in the “City of Three Rivers.” On to Regensburg for Christkindlesmarkt shopping and beer tasting on board, and a visit to Nuremberg with your choice of a city tour or the WWII Rally Grounds. Spend a day exploring the Christmas markets here for traditional keepsakes and delicious specialties. Take an excursion from Nuremberg to Munich for to see the historic home of monarchs at Nymphenburg Palace. In Bamberg, tour the city of seven hills of the Imperial Dynasties, and enjoy onboard Christmas Traditions lecture as you sail to Würzburg—the “Pearl of the Romantic Road”—with Christmas markets brimming with holiday cheer. Visit a quaint Bavarian Main River village and enjoy a cookie-baking demonstration on board your ship. Take an excursion to Rüdesheim in the Rhine Valley wine region to experience the joyful Mechanical Music Museum. Enjoy Christmas market lights and delights through Heidelberg and Speyer before sailing to Strasbourg for the La Petite France district and shimmering Christmas markets. Continue on to the Black Forest for a traditional Bavarian Christmas atmosphere or visit the largest wine producer in Europe at Badischer Winzerkeller winemakers. Your European Christmas cruise concludes in Basel, Switzerland.
- Day 1VIENNA, AUSTRIA (EMBARKATION)Thu, Dec 03, 2020Welcome to Austria! Your Suite Ship® is Ready for Boarding.Flights into Vienna must arrive by 3:30 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm. Indulge in traditional holiday fare and hot libations to warm your heart and soul before boarding. (D)
- Day 2VIENNAFri, Dec 04, 2020Royal Collections and Culinary Confections CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of Vienna to see the Imperial Palace complex—the winter residence of the Imperial family, OR: DISCOVERY Join a Guided Culinary Tour of Vienna’s magical Christmas Advent Markets to sample Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel. You may join a Guided Optional Tour of Schönbrunn Palace—summer home of the Habsburg dynasty for 300 years.Spend free time on your own to enjoy the Christkindlesmarkt, or relax by the fire’s glow in a Viennese café this evening. OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MELK(B,L,D)
- Day 3MELKSat, Dec 05, 2020Striking Frescoes and the Breathtaking Wachau ValleyCLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of Melk’s magnificent Benedictine Abbey to marvel at its frescoed ceilings.This afternoon cruise to Grein, where this evening you will enjoy live entertainment on board. OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN PASSAU(B,L,D)
- Day 4PASSAUSun, Dec 06, 2020Saint Stephens, Salzburg, and the Story of Silent NightCLASSIC Join a Guided City Walk to learn more about this beautiful “City of Three Rivers”.You may like to join a Guided Optional Excursion to Salzburg, Austria. See the setting of The Sound of Music, and learn the story behind the beloved Christmas hymn, Silent Night. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO REGENSBURG(B,L,D)
- Day 5REGENSBURGMon, Dec 07, 2020Christmas Magic in Bavaria’s Medieval Miracle CLASSIC Join a Guided City Walk and see Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall) and Porta Pretoria—entrance to the Castra Regina fortress built in 179 AD. Take time to browse Regensburg’s sparkling Christmas markets. Enjoy hot-mulled wine, candied almonds, gingerbread, or bratwurst.DISCOVERY Later, indulge in an onboard Beer Tasting to sample regional German brews.Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO NUREMBERG(B,L,D)
- Day 6NUREMBERGTue, Dec 08, 2020Living Heritage and History Lessons DISCOVERY Enjoy a Christmas Traditions Lecture on board while sailing this morning. CLASSIC Choose a Guided Tour of Nuremberg’s medieval architecture, gilded fountain, Gothic cathedral, and Kaiserburg Castle, OR:CLASSIC Join a Guided Tour of the historic Nuremberg Rally Grounds—used by the Third Reich.Spend free time on your own to browse the spruce stalls of the Christmas Markets of Nuremberg. Sample favorite Bavarian fare—from dozens of bratwurst varieties, gingerbread, mulled blueberry wine, and countless other culinary delights of the Christkindlmarkt. OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG (B,L,D)
- Day 7NUREMBERG. EXCURSION TO MUNICHWed, Dec 09, 2020This morning disembark the vessel which has brought you to Nuremberg and drive to MunichCLASSIC Enjoy a Guided City Tour which will show you the highlights of fascinating Munich. See Nymphenburg Palace—a former residence of Bavarian monarchs, along with the Old and New Town Halls of Marienplatz.Transfer back to Munich to embark on the vessel which will bring you to Basel.OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG(B,D)
- Day 8NUREMBERGThu, Dec 10, 2020Living Heritage and History Lessons A day to relax and enjoy Nuremberg at your own pace. Stroll through the festively lit streets, buy those last-minute Christmas gifts, or ask your Cruise Director for suggestions of things to do.EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BAMBERG(B,L,D)
- Day 9BAMBERGFri, Dec 11, 2020Cherished Christmas Customs and Cradle ScenesCLASSIC Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Bamberg—medieval home of Germany’s Roman Empire dynasties. Stroll through dozens of Bamberg’s nativity scenes—from miniature to life-size. Take free time to enjoy the quaint Christmas markets, and warm up with traditional German dumplings, sausage, and a glass of hearty Bavarian ale. DISCOVERY Enjoy an onboard Christmas Traditions Lecture while sailing. EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO WÜRZBURG(B,L,D)
- Day 10WÜRZBURGSat, Dec 12, 2020Ornaments, Old Saint Nicholas, and Nutcrackers Sweet CLASSIC Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the “Pearl of the Romantic Road” with its Old Main Bridge, towering fortress, and baroque Bishop’s Residence.You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to the beautiful Bavarian town of Rothenburg. Visit the Käthe Wohlfahrt German Christmas museum—the world’s most extensive collection of traditional German Christmas decorations.Spend free time enjoying the festive, warm glow of Wurzburg’s Christmas markets. Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MAIN RIVER VILLAGE(B,L,D)
- Day 11MAIN RIVER VILLAGESun, Dec 13, 2020Hidden Gifts and Holiday DelightsCLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of a picturesque village along the Main River.DISCOVERY Join a Cookie-Baking Demonstration on board your ship while sailing.AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO FRANKFURT(B,L,D)
- Day 12FRANKFURT EXCURSION TO RUDESHEIMMon, Dec 14, 2020Eat, Drink, and Be Merry in Wine Country CLASSIC Tour the incredible Mechanical Music Museum for a one-of-a-kind instrumental experience in Rüdesheim.EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO SPEYER (B,D)
- Day 13HEIDELBERG EXCURSION. SPEYERTue, Dec 15, 2020Winter Wonders and a Wine Barrel Fit for a King CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour that includes the magnificent Heidelberg Castle and the Great Vat—the world’s largest wine barrel. After the tour, visit the local German Christmas markets in Heidelberg.Explore at your own pace to soak up the sights and sounds, tantalizing treats, and seasonal handiwork of Speyer Christmas markets.This evening, enjoy live entertainment on board EVENING/OVERNIGHT TO STRASBOURG (B,L,D)
- Day 14STRASBOURG, FRANCEWed, Dec 16, 2020A Gothic Cathedral, Heaven’s Time, and Joyeux Noël CLASSIC Come along for City Sightseeing, including the city’s gothic, stained-glass cathedral with its celebrated ancient murals and astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France District.You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to beautiful Alsace, for an afternoon in a French wine-country village. Savor the warmth and glow of Christmas tradition by spending your free time this afternoon wandering the French winter markets of Strasbourg. Take in the lights, music, and the pleasures of the season. EVENING CRUISE TO BREISACH(B,L,D)
- Day 15BREISACH, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO BLACK FORESTThu, Dec 17, 2020History, Artistry, and the Beautiful Black ForestDISCOVERY Visit to Badische Winzerkeller, the largest German wine producer in Europe. Discover Germany’s southernmost wine country in Baden—ideally situated between the hills of the Black Forest and the Rhine River. Learn about the vintners’ process in the vineyards here, and enjoy a wine tasting, OR:DISCOVERY Join a Guided Tour to the magical Black Forest to experience local traditions and the vibrant Christmas mood.You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to visit the charming village of Colmar, with its half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings. Alternatively, spend your afternoon leisurely browsing Breisach’s lovely Christmas market to sample bretzels, mulled wine, and Black Forest cake. OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BASEL (B,L,D)
- Day 16BASEL, SWITZERLAND (DISEMBARKATION)Fri, Dec 18, 2020Your cruise ends with breakfast this morning.Flights should not leave Zürich airport before 10 am or Basel airport before 8 am.(B)
- In the event of technical or water level issues, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or alter the program, including hotel overnight when necessary.
- Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
- Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included.
Avalon offers the opportunity for solo travelers to sail with no single supplement (subject to availability).
Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.
Extra nights per person in Vienna:
in single room from $218 to $237, in twin room from $130 to $149
Extra nights per person in Zurich:
in single room $225,in twin room $152
All prices per person based on double occupancy. Cruise price based on Category E in a deluxe outside stateroom on Indigo Deck. See below for upgrade pricing.
Hygiene and Safety Protocols for Avalon Waterways
Today's world has changed, but what remains certain is Avalon Waterways' commitment to guest safety, comfort and peace-of-mind while traveling with us. To that end, Avalon Waterways has established a worldwide Assurance program, with enhanced on-trip protocols and procedures, to ensure the health – and happiness – of guests throughout their travels with us.
It all starts with Avalon Waterways' Global Health & Safety Team, dedicated to ensuring that cleanliness of all operations exceeds today’s travel standards—from start to finish. The following areas address Avalon Waterways' commitment to providing a safe and clean environment for guests.
New embarkation procedures to offer guests a safe start to their journey, including:
- Social distancing throughout embarkation
- Mandatory health screening, including touch-free temperature-check, for all guests and crew
- Luggage disinfection prior to onboarding (with crew wearing gloves and masks)
FRESH AIR, INSIDE AND OUT:
In addition to Avalon Waterways' Open-Air staterooms, the air in the ships is not circulated between staterooms; only within an individual stateroom and mixed with fresh, outside air.
BLENDING CULTURAL PROXIMITY WITH SOCIAL DISTANCE:
New social distancing guidelines for guests throughout their Avalon cruise include:
- Reducing ship capacity as required for more space on board per guest
- Introducing more dining venues for more dining space per person
- Crew wearing masks for the duration of the cruise during any guest interaction
- Providing masks for guests to wear during any event where social proximity could become an issue, including disembarkation for excursions and safety drills
- Adjusting ratio of guides and coaches for excursions, as required
NEW TECHNOLOGY TO ENSURE CLEANLINESS:
- Electrostatic disinfecting systems
- UV disinfecting systems
TOUCHING HEARTS, NOT HANDS:
Reducing risk with hands-free service, including:
- More hand-sanitizing stations throughout the ship
- Required use of hand-sanitizing stations when leaving the ship, returning to the ship and entering dining venues as well as entering each public/common space
- Self-serve stations, including buffets, drinks, specialty coffees and snacks have been replaced with crew service
- All buffets (breakfast and lunch) replaced by a full range of á la carte menu choices
- Hourly (or more frequent) disinfection of all public areas
COMMITMENT TO THE CLEANEST SHIPS:
Enhanced cleaning procedures throughout each ship, including these additional steps that go above-and-beyond Avalon’s already strict procedures:
- Deep disinfection of each stateroom between cruises, including:
- Use of disinfectants and cleaning materials that meet the highest standards
- Soft goods in each stateroom (mattress, sofa, window coverings, chairs, etc.) disinfected between cruises
- Disinfection of all dining areas between meals
- Disinfection of all shared items like umbrellas, bicycles and other Adventure Center items
- Disinfection of all goods prior to loading on the ship
- Ongoing crew training in protective equipment use and hygiene
FOCUS ON CREW HEALTH:
Ensuring a healthy crew, including:
- Medical certificate required prior to start of contract
- Daily temperature checks
- Social distancing in crew living quarters
- Regular health screenings
Life on Board
Questions & Answers
Question: Will the day-by-day itinerary change?
Question: In what language is the river cruise conducted?
The ship is beautiful and the rooms very comfortable. Avalon seems to attract a very friendly and social group of travelers. It is also welcoming to the solo traveler.
This was probably the best cruise we have ever taken and we travel a lot. Autumn from Affordable is the best. She was always there when I needed her and so accommodating. The ship Passion was a 10 plus in every way from the rooms to the tours, food and staff. I liked that they had healthy choices at every meal.
Our Avalon cruise exceeded our expections. We had a great staff, great tours, and met wonderful people.
This river cruise to see the Christmas Markets and tour parts of Austria, Germany, and the Czech Republic was a dream come true. Every part of it was amazing. From the organization of Affordable Tours pre-cruise to Avalon Waterways beautiful ship, great crew (especially cruise director Gusta) and the spectacular meals. The tours were marvelous and informative. Cant say enough about the great time we had.
As always the service on Avalon was excellent and the rooms wonderful. Missed the allergy notifications cards on buffet as my daughter had celiacs Did appriciate that after the third day the had made gluten fee desserts that she was able to have and the snacks provided at captains cocktail time. Would have been perfect if these items had been available the first few days also, as not having them made me feel my daughter was left out and me also feel guilty if I ate in front of her.
I thought the dinner meals were not as good as past cruise. Breakfast and lunch were fine. Service from staff was excellent
It was a wonderful trip and the person who made it really great was our Cruise Director, Monika. She was friendly, helpful and extremely kind. When I had a severe asthma attack in Venice, she made arrangements to get me to a hospital for necessary treatment and throughout the rest of the trip continued to check on me and make sure that I had whatever was needed to be comfortable. It can be a scary experience to be ill in a foreign country, but with Monika's help I made it through the rest of the trip without any more worries.
We had a great trip. This is our second river cruise with Avalon through Affordable Tours. We knew what to expect from our previous trip (Romantic Rhine a year ago). The day excursions are well-led, with lots of information from our capable guides. The food on board is very good, with buffet style (our preference) for breakfast and lunch. We're not gourmet food aficionados, honestly two-hour dinners every night are not our style, but we knew they were part of the package, so we weren't surprised.
Avalon staff and tours were excellent - enjoyed the many excursions.
The attention to detail is incredible. The tour director left nothing on the table. Everything was perfectly organized and described. The cruise was great and I would, and will, recommend this to all my friends and family. If you find yourself on this cruise, you are in for a great adventure. All arranged/included tours at each port were top notch.
The trip was an educational trip about the Balkan Region. It was wonderful!