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The Blue Danube - Eastbound 2021

From Prague, Czech Republic to Budapest, Hungary
Length: 12 Days - Departs: Tue, Aug 03, 2021
Operator
Ship
Departure
Aug 03, 2021
Arrival
Aug 14, 2021

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River Cruise Itinerary

Along the "river of kings"... medieval castles and Gothic cathedrals... charming riverside villages... the Imperial treasures of the Habsburgs... lush Wachau valley vineyards... the music of Mozart...  From Prague to Budapest, castles of all descriptions have watched over the landscape from their royal perches for centuries. On this 12-day journey featuring a 7-night Danube cruise, they remain lasting testimony to kingdoms and culture, ready to welcome you… during a private dinner in Lobkowicz Palace… an exclusive evening of Imperial entertainment at a private Vienna palace... in Baroque Salzburg and atop Budapest’s Castle Hill... and exploring Vienna’s Hofburg or Schönbrunn Palace. It's a Blue Danube cruise to remember!

  1. Day 1
    Prague, Czech Republic
    Tue, Aug 03, 2021

    Tour begins: 5:30 PM, Prague Mariott Hotel. A transfer is included from Václav Havel Airport Prague or the Praha Hlavni Nadrazi train station to the Prague Mariott Hotel in the heart of the city. Those arriving early may join your Tauck Director for a walk to this historic city's Old Town Square. Begin your amazing Blue Danube river cruise adventure early this evening with a Tauck Exclusive – a royal welcoming reception, tour and dinner at 16th-century Lobkowicz Palace at Prague Castle. Immerse in an evening of classical cultural treasures – music and art played an important role in the aristocratic world of the Lobkowicz family.


    Meals: Dinner
  2. Day 2
    Prague, Czech Republic
    Wed, Aug 04, 2021
    Start today's exploration of Prague this morning with a choice of walking tours through Prague's ethereal Old Town, choosing between a one-hour introductory tour; a "walk through the centuries" including a visit to St. Agnes Convent; or the city’s poignant Jewish sites in Josefov, the historic Jewish Quarter (ask at booking about dates that cannot visit inside the Jewish Heritage sites as they are closed Saturdays and on Jewish holidays; in those cases, alternate sightseeing will be offered).  This afternoon, your choices in the ancient Hradcany (Castle) district include the 1,000-year-old Prague Castle's complex of palaces, courtyards and gardens; the magnificent Gothic Cathedral of St. Vitus; and the grand Baroque libraries of Strahov Monastery, where a private tour is a Tauck Exclusive. Sample the culinary pleasures of Prague on a free night to spend as you wish; the city's many fine restaurants and cafés feature a wide range of cuisines... and some of the best schnitzels, goulashes, strudels, dumplings and beer the region has to offer. Tomorrow – your Danube river cruise begins.
    Meals: Breakfast
  3. Day 3
    Regensburg, Germany
    Thu, Aug 05, 2021
    Drive this morning to the quintessential Bavarian town of Regensburg, whose roots stretch back to Roman days, enjoying a little free time upon arrival. The best way to explore this treasure-trove of history is on foot, as our local guide leads you on a walking tour that includes the Steinerne Brücke, a medieval stone bridge over the Danube; the 15th-century town hall; and the remains of the town’s Roman wall. Depart Regensburg and continue on to Vilshofen, where you'll board your riverboat to launch your 7-night Danube cruise. Join your shipmates and crew at a welcome reception followed by dinner aboard the riverboat tonight.
    Meals: Breakfast
  4. Day 4
    Fri, Aug 06, 2021
    Take in the views from your riverboat's sun deck, lounge, or the windows of your outside cabin as your ship glides along the mighty Danube this morning. Your first port of call on your cruise is Engelhartszell, a pretty town on the Danube in Upper Austria. After a visit to a local private home (and a taste of local cake, sweets and coffee), you'll have a choice of a walking tour of town including 18th-century Engelhartszell Abbey and Danube World, or a guided tour of the Jochenstein Lock on the Danube, through which ships navigate through the Wachau Valley. Following lunch aboard the riverboat, you may, if you wish, join us for an optional bicycle excursion along the Danube to Aschach (a fairly rigorous bike ride, for experienced cyclists only) before continuing your cruise this afternoon, bound for Linz. Enjoy the Chef's signature dinner this evening; after the riverboat's arrival in Linz, the musical trio Donau3Klang entertains onboard tonight.
    Meals: Breakfast
  5. Day 5
    Salzburg, Austria, Linz, Austria
    Sat, Aug 07, 2021

    Your boat stays docked in Linz today, with a choice of how you spend your day – full-day excursions to Salzburg (Austria), or Cesky Krumlov in the Czech Republic, or remaining in Linz. A setting for The Sound of Music, Salzburg is enticing with Baroque architecture, painted wrought-iron signage, ornate church towers, and grand palaces. Our walking tour explores Old Town, Mirabell Gardens, and Mozart’s birthplace with time on your own to have lunch and experience the sights as you wish. Alternatively, travel with us through beautiful landscapes to Cesky Krumlov, which has been called a living gallery of elegant Renaissance-era buildings with a well-preserved medieval heritage and charming ambiance. A walking tour takes you to part of Krumlov Castle; it’s worth climbing the many steps to see firsthand the medieval, Renaissance and Rococo design found inside, along with the stunning views of the town below. A third option today provides an opportunity to remain in Linz for time explore as you please on your own before returning to the riverboat for dinner.


    Meals: Breakfast
  6. Day 6
    Dürnstein, Austria
    Sun, Aug 08, 2021
    Continue cruising through the Wachau Valley, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its well-preserved medieval landscapes. Dock in Dürnstein for a closer look at its 16th-century Baroque houses and 13th-century Romanesque church on a walking tour along cobblestone streets; or join us for a bicycle ride in the Wachau Valley. If you wish, visit the Augustinian Monastery. Enjoy some free time in this charming riverside town – perhaps taking an invigorating climb up the steps to the ruins of Kuenringerburg, a hilltop castle above the town where Richard the Lionhearted was held for ransom during the Crusades, from which the views of the river and valley are glorious – and sample the fruits of the Wachau Valley vineyards during a wine tasting at an authentic Austrian tavern. The riverboat departs early evening for Vienna.
    Meals: Breakfast
  7. Day 7
    Vienna, Austria
    Mon, Aug 09, 2021
    Your riverboat arrives overnight in Vienna, Austria, where an introductory tour of this former capital of the old Habsburg Empire – and its grand boulelvard, the Ringstrasse – precedes a walking tour focusing on your choice of either medieval Vienna or the Jewish district of old Vienna, or a bike ride in the city. The afternoon is yours to explore this famous city as you please. Later, nothing compares to the royal treatment and pageantry you’ll experience tonight at our private Imperial Evening in the Palais Pallavicini, an opulent, private Viennese palace that played a role in the 1940s film noir classic The Third Man. Welcome cocktails and dinner precede an unforgettable spectacle of beautiful ball gowns and a musical performance celebrating the legacy of Mozart.
    Meals: Breakfast
  8. Day 8
    Vienna, Austria
    Tue, Aug 10, 2021
    A choice of sightseeing this morning features either a tour of the Habsburgs’ Schönbrunn Palace, an architectural masterpiece and Austrian cultural treasure, or the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, one of the world's most acclaimed art museums located in a palatial building on the historic Ringstrasse. Then, shuttles are at the ready to bring you back to the riverboat before an afternoon of cruising to neighboring Slovakia. Dinner tonight introduces you to a glimpse of daily life in Slovakia with a taste of regional cuisine and an onboard performance by a talented troupe of Slovak dancers.
    Meals: Breakfast
  9. Day 9
    Bratislava, Slovakia
    Wed, Aug 11, 2021

    Begin the day with a Tauck Exclusive – a presentation by our local guide that takes you inside contemporary Slovakia and Bratislava for a look at politics, the economy, religion, the social order, preservation and emergence of the arts, and more. Then, it's your choice of a walking tour of this cobblestoned, vehicle-free city, where you'll see 17 centuries of history eloquently chronicled in sites including its 13th-century Old Town Hall, Baroque Habsburg-era palaces, the Opera House, Slovak Philharmonic Hall and St. Martin’s Cathedral – or a guided bicycle excursion through the "Iron Curtain Area" of Bratislava. Back aboard ship, get ready to celebrate tomorrow’s arrival in Budapest and the end of your Danube riverboat cruise with a farewell reception and dinner onboard.


    Meals: Breakfast
  10. Day 10
    Budapest, Hungary
    Thu, Aug 12, 2021
    Your cruise ends this morning in Budapest, Hungary, which is split into the sections of Buda and Pest by the Danube River. After disembarking your riverboat and bidding the crew farewell, explore the city's Buda side with a visit to the historic Covered Market and a walking tour of Castle Hill, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; see Fishermen’s Bastion with its Neo-Romanesque design, and admire the stained glass windows and centuries of history in Matthias Church (may be closed on some days due to services). After lunch at a local café, transfer to your city-center hotel. Spend the rest of the day and evening pursuing what interests you most in Budapest.
    Meals: Breakfast
  11. Day 11
    Budapest, Hungary
    Fri, Aug 13, 2021

    Budapest is split into the sections of Buda and Pest by the Danube River. This morning, explore the Pest side of the city on a tour including a special visit to the opulent State Opera House, opened in 1884, with its royal boxes, gilded vaulted ceiling, exquisite murals and three-ton chandelier – and stops at City Park and Heroes’ Square, bounded by some of the finest architectural works in Hungary. Later, you have a choice of a themed walking tour that focuses on the Hungarian Revolution and includes the Parliament building, the Embassy and St. Stephen’s Basilica; a guided visit to Dohány Synagogue; or a guided bicycle tour through the city. In the afternoon, you'll have an opportunity to visit one of Budapest's famed public spas, if you wish. Budapest has acquired quite an excellent reputation for its cuisine; tonight’s special farewell dinner is at the grand Akadémia Club in the Hungarian Academy of Sciences – a fitting finale to your Danube River cruise experience.


    Meals: Breakfast
  12. Day 12
    Budapest, Hungary
    Sat, Aug 14, 2021

    Tour ends: Budapest, Hungary. Fly home anytime. A transfer is included from The Ritz-Carlton, Budapest to Budapest Ferenc Liszt Airport or the Keleti train station; allow a minimum of three hours for check-in at the airport.


    Meals: Breakfast

Rivers Visited

Danube

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Inclusions

Along the "river of kings"... medieval castles and Gothic cathedrals... charming riverside villages... the Imperial treasures of the Habsburgs... lush Wachau valley vineyards... the music of Mozart... From Prague to Budapest, castles of all descriptions have watched over the landscape from their royal perches for centuries. On this 12-day journey featuring a 7-night Danube cruise, they remain lasting testimony to kingdoms and culture, ready to welcome you… during a private dinner in Lobkowicz Palace… an exclusive evening of Imperial entertainment at a private Vienna palace... in Baroque Salzburg and atop Budapest’s Castle Hill... and exploring Vienna’s Hofburg or Schönbrunn Palace. It's a Blue Danube cruise to remember!

  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE - Private Imperial Evening at a palace in Vienna featuring a gala dinner and Viennese performers
  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE - Private aperitif and dinner in Prague at Lobkowicz Palace, Prague Castle
  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE - A private tour of Prague's Baroque libraries, Strahov Monastery 
  • All gratuities to ship staff, drivers, local guides, Tauck Directors and Tauck Cruise Director
  • All private Tauck shore excursions - $3,090 Value

Health and Safety Protocols for Tauck

Traveling with Peace of Mind
Our commitment never wavers – to earn your trust by always doing the right thing. As we explore the world together again, this will be more important than ever as we adapt to living and traveling in the presence of COVID-19.

Tauck is 95-years young this year, and our ability to weather many storms over the decades is a result of our values and beliefs – as a family and as a family-owned and led company. In addition to the guiding light of these values, our extensive experience, local knowledge and global support network help to ensure your safety on every Tauck journey. Building upon our bedrock of award-winning guest care, we have worked tirelessly to prepare for your return following the COVID-19 hiatus in travel. With guidance from leading experts, including the CDC and WHO, together with our internal Global Response Team and, most importantly, with feedback from thousands of our guests, we have redefined how we will conduct our experiences as we resume travel.

Tauck is Prepared for the Unexpected
For decades, Tauck has operated in over 70 countries in all 7 continents. Over this time, our staff and network of supplier partners have always been there to support our guests and team on the road. Our guests travel with a comprehensive, built-in support system that starts with the care and local knowledge of our Tauck Directors and extends to our network of partners around the world, including hoteliers and transportation companies.

At the core of our ability to quickly and effectively respond to the unexpected is our Global Response Team - a group of over 50 employees across all departments who stand ready to spring into action around the world. This team has plenty of experience, from weather events, high and low water on rivers, earthquakes, volcanic ash, civil unrest and work stoppages. They have also dealt with past virus outbreaks including the SARS and Zika viruses.

The Tauck Travel Well Pledge
Before we operate tours and cruises, all Tauck employees, our supplier partners and our guests will take Tauck’s Travel Well Pledge.

As a company, we will follow our enhanced protocols with diligence and rigor; review them frequently as the landscape changes and always make common-sense decisions grounded in purpose and pride. We embrace these new and necessary measures to combat COVID-19 and will do our very best to provide the Tauck care we have been honored to deliver for 95 years.

OUR NEW HEALTH & SAFETY PROTOCOLS
Consistent with our commitment to the well-being of our guests, we are implementing enhanced health and safety protocols. These protocols may vary by geographic regions and will certainly evolve over time, as science and society respond to new realities:

Tauck Staff
Prior to interacting with guests, each member of Tauck’s field staff is trained in enhanced protocols and participates in a personal health screening.

Once on tour, our Tauck Directors and supporting staff are responsible for maintaining these protocols with a special focus on cleanliness and physical distancing. They will relay critical information regarding requirements, advise when protocols are mandatory – such as wearing a face covering in group settings – and help facilitate guest care through communication with appropriate parties should a guest become ill on tour. All Tauck staff will adhere to the same requirements.

Guest Responsibility
When joining a Tauck journey, every guest is responsible for their own health and, in turn, the protection of their fellow travelers, the Tauck staff, our suppliers and the places we visit. Guests will pledge to follow the direction of the Tauck staff and adhere to health and safety protocols.

Guests are expected to wear face coverings in all group settings, to wash their hands frequently and to adhere to supplier and government regulations. While supplies of face coverings, gloves, and hand sanitizer will be available, guests are asked to bring such personal items for their own comfort.

Small is BIG
For many years, Tauck has emphasized and invested in more choices of activities, resulting in smaller groups for activities like sightseeing and events. This is consistent with our mantra that “Small is Big” – small groups and smaller ships with fewer guests.

We initially focused on these elements to improve the guest experience. Yet today they take on an additional dimension; small group experiences and more personal space are critical in providing the peace of mind our guests expect. Accordingly, we are offering even more small group experiences and limiting guest numbers across all of our journeys.

We have been working diligently with our partners to be prepared to welcome you back when the time is right.
Tauck has worked meticulously with our global supplier partners to plan for every itinerary following the hiatus in travel. All partners, whether they be a hotel, museum, small ship/riverboat, restaurant or other partner, have been thoughtful about how to provide a Tauck experience in this environment.

And while it's impossible to list all of the enhanced health and safety protocols for the hundreds of Tauck partners across the globe, we would like to share a representative sample of what you can expect:

Hotels
Our hotel partners all have world-class health and safety protocols. However, these guidelines may vary depending on local situations and regulations. Here are some typical examples:

  • Upon-arrival, health questionnaires and temperature checks may be required. Some hotels may even require daily temperature scans.
  • Social distancing may be required in public areas, bars and restaurants.
  • High-touch areas such as railings, door handles and elevators will undergo enhanced cleaning.
  • In-room measures may include removal of tent cards and magazines. Common use items, such as coffee makers and minibar amenities may be on demand.
  • High-touch areas, such as light switches, thermostats, remote controls and door handles will be subject to enhanced and frequent cleaning.
  • Guests will have the option to determine housekeeping frequency.
  • All hotel staff will undergo daily health screenings.

Ships and Riverboats
We have worked closely with our cruise partners to ensure the best possible health and safety protocols and to ensure the care and service you expect from Tauck:

  • Guests on cruises and river journeys will be required to complete a health questionnaire and will undergo a temperature check prior to boarding. In some instances, our ship partners will conduct daily temperature checks.
  • Face coverings and physical distancing will be required in most public spaces for guests and crew alike.
  • Meals may be offered at staggered times and self-serve buffets will be eliminated.
  • In-cabin measures include removing common use items. Coffee makers, minibar amenities and housekeeping will be on demand at guest discretion.
  • Ship staff will undergo daily health screenings.
  • All vessels will have medical staff onboard.

Sightseeing and Local Activities
Many of our experiences are exclusive and/or private and that’s important in taking care of you. Whether it be a guided tour, a visit to an iconic museum or private home, a musical performance, or any other special Tauck activities, we are applying the same rigor to health and safety protocols:

  • Tauck listening devices will be sanitized thoroughly and frequently.
  • Sightseeing is being adjusted to ensure proper physical distancing.
  • Admission times at venues may be altered to ensure no crowding.
  • Paper tickets, handouts and the like may be eliminated.

Dining
Tauck has always been known for a la carte dining; having more freedom to decide when and with whom to dine now has more value than ever. Additionally, our partners whether they be hotels, ships, special venues or restaurants, are raising their already rigorous hygienic standards. Here are some examples:

  • Waitstaff will likely be wearing face coverings and gloves.
  • Seating will be adjusted to accommodate physical distancing.
  • Self-serve buffets will be eliminated. Common use menus will no longer be used unless sanitized.

On-Tour Transportation
Keeping on-tour transportation safe is a major focus of our team who has worked with hundreds of partners to ensure continuity in health and safety protocols:

  • On motorcoaches and other on-tour ground transportation, such as airport transfers, guest should expect physical distancing and will be required to wear face coverings.
  • Prior to each trip, our motorcoaches, vans, airport transfer vehicles and on-tour aircraft will undergo a deep sanitizing process.
  • Luggage may also be sanitized at each movement.
  • Drivers will wear gloves and face coverings during all guest-facing interactions.
  • Drivers will frequently clean handrails, door handles, arm rests, tables, seats, air conditioning/HVAC units, restrooms and overhead storage areas.

Our Supplier Partners are ready for you
Tauck is proud to have worked closely with our partners around the world, many of them for decades, to deliver the quality, comfort and safety you expect. Whether it be hotels and resorts, riverboats and small ships, restaurants, event venues or transportation companies, their meticulous health and safety protocols reflect their leadership and well-earned respect in the travel industry. The following are some select health and safety protocols. We will update these on a regular basis.

In addition to our supplier partners, we have also been actively engaged with global travel organizations to standardize health and safety protocols throughout the travel industry. TourCare is one example:

TourCare are health and sanitation guidelines developed by the tour industry's major global associations: the United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA), The Canadian Association of Tour Operators (CATO) and the European Tourism Association (ETOA). Tauck, and our supplier partners, meet and exceed these guidelines that require members to adhere to the highest standards in the industry.

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Ship Information

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Cabins

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Life on Board

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Questions & Answers

Question: Will the day-by-day itinerary change?

Yes, the river cruise itineraries may change due to reasons such as inclement weather or unforeseen events. Your safety is the number one concern aboard and all precautions necessary will be taken in order to ensure passenger safety, including changing itineraries. Please note that when itineraries do change, the ship staff will do their best to substitute any missed port with an alternative destination.

Question: In what language is the river cruise conducted?

The river cruise will be conducted in English only.

Customer Reviews

Overall Rating
4.8
Accommodations
4.8
Itinerary
4.8
Professional Staff
4.8
Repeat with Operator
4.8
Value for Money
4.6

Ratings based off 10 reviews - currently showing 5 reviews with comments only

Once you take a Tauck tour, you'll never go with another Operator. The Tauck experience was incredible and totally worth the money. Can't think of one thing to complain about or would change.

Enjoyed all aspects of the Tauck Cruise.

It is wonderful to have every detail taken care of with a smile on the face of the staff.

Tauck is always an outstanding experience.

While watching a video on the history of Tauck during a coach ride portion of this tour, I was surprised to find out that this company pioneered land tours in North America, and was the first to offer European river cruises. Tauck takes care of even the smallest details, from tipping local guides to providing us with coins to use restrooms during walking tours of the various cities we visited. WiFi onboard is complimentary -- something even NatGeo doesn\'t offer on their cruises. And, an open bar to boot, where I ordered the most exotic cocktails and kept the bartenders grinning and guessing as to their ingredients. Our arrivals at hotels in separate coaches on land portions of the tour were coordinated beforehand with our rooms and luggage, so that we did not have to spend any time standing in large gatherings in the hotel lobby waiting for rooms to be assigned and room keys slowly doled out as in other tours. As we off boarded our coaches, we were handed our room keys and were able to proceed immediately to our rooms, with our luggage delivered soon thereafter. Each hotel stay was fabulous and impressive -- four stars all the way. Live orchestral music gave our dining experiences a truly special touch.

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AffordableTours.com is a travel agent for Tauck. Brochure Price is based on the itinerary's highest brochure price. Our price reflects our base price for the same departure as Brochure Price. All prices, itineraries, accommodations and dates are subject to change without notice and at any time. All prices are USD per person and based on double occupancy. Availability is limited and must be reconfirmed at time of booking. All prices change frequently and our website prices are not guaranteed until a deposit has been received by us. The prices on our website are intended to serve as a guide only and may not accurately reflect current prices. We are not responsible for errors, omissions, or changes in these prices until a booking has been confirmed by one of our agents. Please call us toll free at 1-800-342-0019 to confirm current prices and availability. Prices listed are per person, cruise only, and based on double occupancy.

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