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river-cruises

River Danube

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Undeniably beautiful, the Danube is one of the World’s most romantic waterways celebrated in music, literature and the visual arts. The river, which carves its way from the mountains of Germany’s Black Forest in the West through the Iron Gates Gorge to the Black Sea in the East, has been at the heart of European cultural, creative and political history for more than a millennium. Once the frontier of the mighty Roman Empire, the second longest river in Europe touches the borders of no less than ten different countries and has four capital cities in its path. Flowing through the centre of glorious Vienna, the historical core of Bratislava and the heart of Belgrade, the Danube is the division of beautiful Budapest. Along its banks fascinating towns and cities seamlessly blend the best of old and new, and a river cruise is the perfect way to get up-close and personal with Europe’s grand historic architecture, strongly-entrenched traditions, emerging cultures and ultra-modern landmarks. 

Things to know

  • At 1,785 miles long, the Danube is the second longest river in Europe
  • The Danube touches 10 countries – Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova and Ukraine
  • More than 30% of the Danube is in Hungary
  • The dramatic Iron Gorge Gate is a stunning 83-mile stretch of the Danube separating Serbia from Romania
  • In 1944, sensing defeat was imminent, the Germans scuttled hundreds of their warships in the Danube
  • A 42.9 metre high rock sculpture of Romanian hero Decebalus overlooks the Danube

 

Key Ports of Call

Picture of - Bratislava
Bratislava

Thrust into the spotlight on January 1st 1993 when it became capital of the newly formed Slovakia, Bratislava is a small city with stunning nature on its doorstep. Built on a rocky hill, Bratislava Castle casts an imposing silhouette over the city whose Baroque palaces were commissioned by Hungarian nobles and where eleven Hungarian rulers were crowned in the glorious St Martin’s Cathedral. Its compact Old Town is a charming mix of medieval and gothic with shops and cafes spilling out onto cobbled stone streets.
Picture of - Budapest
Budapest

Often called the ‘Pearl of the Danube’, Hungary’s capital is actually made up of the unified cities of Buda on the Danube’s west bank and Pest on the east. A stroll along the Danube is a great way to see Budapest’s most famous sights including the Gothic Revival-style Hungarian Parliament Building, Buda Castle, the Liberty Statue and neo-gothic-style Fisherman’s Bastion. St Stephen’s Basilica is the most important religious building in Hungary and its dome offers incredible aerial views of the city. Not to be missed is a tasty treat from one of Budapest’s famous patisseries.
Picture of - Vienna
Vienna

At the point where the Danube flows through the gap between the Alps to the west and the Carpathians to the east, Vienna is one of the world’s great cities. Austria’s capital offers a lively mix of history and culture. The famous Hofburg Palace and glorious Schloss Schönbrunn reflect the imperial grandeur of Vienna when it was home to the Habsburg dynasty. The iconic Vienna State Opera is a cultural treasure. Within the 19th century, semi-circular boulevard ‘Ringstrasse’, Vienna’s compact core is easily explored on foot and there are plenty of Viennese ‘Kaffeehaus’, a tradition dating back to the 17th century.