Christmas on the Danube - MS William Wordsworth

Christmas on the Danube - MS William Wordsworth

174 Views

Christmas on the Danube - MS William Wordsworth

8 Days Starting in BUDAPEST and ending in Budapest, Hungary

Visiting: Budapest, Esztergom, Bratislava, Melk Abbey, Linz, Vienna

Tour operator:

Riviera Travel

Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Ship Capacity:

167

Physical rating:

Low, Please contact Riviera Travel if you have any concerns regarding the suitability of the holiday due to reduced mobility.

Age range:

12-99

Special diets catered:

Vegetarians, Please contact Riviera Travel with specific dietary requests.

Tour operated in:

English

Trip Styles:

Cruise, River Cruise

Activities:

Walking

This tour is no longer available

Tour Overview

Celebrate Christmas and experience all the pleasures of this joyous time of the year amidst the grand imperial cities of the magnificent Danube. Immerse yourself in majestic surroundings and enjoy a superb gala dinner on Christmas Day.

Highlights

  • Seven visits and tours including guided tours in Vienna, Salzburg or Linz, Budapest and Bratislava; and visits to Esztergom, Melk Abbey and Schonbrunn Palace

  • Live Christmas classical quartet recital on board

  • Hungarian Christmas folklore show on board

  • Five-star service from an English-speaking crew and knowledgeable local guides

Itinerary

Expand All

Day 1 : Arrival In Budapest

fernweh_stories
sotiris_pantera
luisalopesphotography

Location: Budapest

Meals Included: Dinner

Arrive at the airport for your flight to Budapest from where you will be taken to your cruise ship, now glimmering in festive glory. The dedicated crew are there to welcome you on board, ensuring you settle in and familiarise yourself with this first-class floating hotel.



Your eyes will be wide with wonder as you take in the fabulous décor, with garlands adorning the staircases, lights as far as the eye can see and of course the majestic Christmas tree taking centre stage. There’s always a sense of expectancy and excitement on the eve of a cruise, especially at Christmas time and, after an excellent dinner in the stylish restaurant, conversation is sure to revolve around the seasonal delights ahead.

Day 2 : Esztergom

Location: Esztergom

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight we have cruised upstream to Esztergom, one of Hungary’s oldest towns, a royal capital during medieval times and today the seat of the country’s archbishop. We have a guided tour of the famous neoclassical basilica, standing sentinel over the Danube on the border with Slovakia, and boasting one of the world’s largest altarpieces and a wealth of priceless religious artefacts. The castle is also worth exploring; it was the seat of government until the Ottomans invaded in the 16th century. Nestling below are myriad atmospheric churches resonating with the sounds of choir, particularly enchanting at this special time of the year; this is the best of provincial Hungary and is little changed since Habsburg times. 



There will also be time to browse the stalls at the Esztergom Christmas market, where Széchenyi Square has now been transformed into a winter spectacular, and for years has featured an ice rink and live music. Seek out those last minute gifts from the rustic wooden stalls, enjoy the friendly festive atmosphere and perhaps indulge in a slice of traditional chimney cake. As you enjoy your first lunch on board we gently leave Esztergom in our wake, affording a fascinating opportunity to compare the different landscapes, towns and villages of Hungary on one river bank and of Slovakia on the other. Wrap up in your winter best and take to the deck to enjoy the wonderful kaleidoscope of Christmas card scenery drifting by in the frosty air, then return to the warmth of the ship’s inviting lounge.   

Day 3 : Bratislava On Christmas Eve

Location: Bratislava

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We awake on Christmas Eve to Slovakia’s fast-emerging capital city, Bratislava. After a delicious breakfast, we begin the day with a fascinating guided tour. Until recently swathed in the drab uniformity of Communism, the city has rekindled the splendour of its imperial past in its beautifully restored old town. Equally impressive is the imposing 17th-century castle commanding expansive views across the Danube. Christmas in Bratislava is an enchanting experience, with Hviezdoslav Square now dressed up for the special season, complete with a lit-up tram with cosy interior and joyous carols.



You’ll also have plenty of free time to explore the cobble-stoned streets of this captivating city – so what’s it to be? Why not head to the regal Primatial Palace?  Built in the late 1700s in a classical style, the once home to the archbishop of Esztergom now holds a rare collection of tapestry works from the 17th-century.  Take the opportunity to view the traditional Christmas cribs in some of the churches or maybe wander the maze of streets, admiring the Christmas decorations, until you reach the main square.  For a seasonal treat try the medovníky, these delicious honey and ginger biscuits are traditionally eaten at Christmas time in Slovakia. 



This afternoon we cruise into Lower Austria, a peaceful, bucolic region and home to some of the country’s best wines. Head to the convivial atmosphere of the ship’s well stocked bar for your favourite aperitif before another excellent dinner is served.

Day 4 : Melk On Christmas Day

Location: Melk Abbey

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We awake on Christmas Day amidst the enchanting surroundings of the Wachau Valley where the landscape is blanketed with vineyards and dotted with ornamental villages. After breakfast you visit the remarkable Melk Abbey. Nothing quite prepares you for your first sight of this enormous honey-coloured building, standing resplendent above the surrounding countryside and perhaps even more atmospheric at Christmas time.



Originally built as a castle, it was gifted to the Benedictine Order in the 11th-century and, although reconstructed in Baroque style, it has remained a monastic school and monastery ever since. The Abbey is renowned for its 214-yard-long Emperor’s Gallery lined with portraits, many fine rooms and an ornate library. Later we re-join the ship for lunch and the final part of our cruise upstream through the pretty Nibelugengau, an inspiration to poets and also immortalised in the music of Wagner.  



This evening enjoy tonight’s superb Gala Christmas Day dinner, expertly served by your attentive crew before further celebrations with newly made friends in the convivial bar.

Day 5 : Salzburg Or Linz

Location: Linz

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Reaching Linz, you will have the choice of two included excursions. You can stay in the city and take a guided walking tour, exploring the charming, decorated streets of the Baroque old town. At its heart you’ll see one of the finest squares in Austria, lined by grand pastel-coloured facades with an impressive central Trinity Column of white marble, crowned by a gilded sunburst.  There’s also the fortress-like castle, built high above the city by Emperor Friedrich III, now a museum housing a fine collection of nineteenth and twentieth-century artworks. Now embellished in seasonal splendour, take in the festive ambience with the glow of lights and the magnificent Christmas tree in the Hauptplatz. 



Alternatively, join our included tour to Salzburg. Dominating the skyline of Salzburg is one of Europe’s largest stone fortresses, the Hohensalzburg, while beneath its walls, church domes and spires rise from the delightful Altstadt. Then there’s the wonderful Hellbrunn Palace and the splendid formal gardens of the Mirabell Palace. 



This morning discover some of the city’s main sights in the company of an expert local guide, then you’re free to explore as you wish. Everywhere there are sights associated with the city’s most famous resident, Mozart, who wrote his first opera when he was 11!  Celebrate the day by the magnificent Christmas tree in Cathedral Square and perhaps reflect on the hauntingly beautiful lyrics of Silent Night. This carol was written by Joseph Mohr who was also born in Salzburg.  Please note lunch is not included on this full day excursion to Salzburg; however, the ship will offer a packed lunch.



After tonight's excellent dinner on board, perhaps reture to the lounge for a nightcap, whilst we begin our cruise towards magnificent Vienna.

Day 6 : Vienna

Location: Vienna

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

During the early hours, our ship has stealthily crept into port and you awake to find yourself in twinkling Vienna. There are few places that can so delightfully evoke the spirit of Christmas than here – where the elegant imperial facades, their decorations glittering in the glow from a thousand Christmas lights, the sound of classical carols floating on the crisp air and the irresistible smell of candyfloss and roasted chestnuts is truly reminiscent of Christmas from a bygone age. There has been a Christmas market here since the Middle Ages and today the markets held over the festive period sell a huge range of seasonal gifts and mouth-watering treats.



After breakfast you enjoy a guided tour seeing the main sights such as St Stephen’s Cathedral and the impressive Hofburg complex, former royal court, now home to a collection of museums, the Vienna Boys’ Choir and the world famous Spanish Riding School.  There will also be time to explore the Christmas markets, or if you prefer you can retreat to the refined, yet cosy elegance of a traditional Viennese café for an indulgent Sachertorte.  



After lunch on board we visit the magnificent Schönbrunn Palace. Once the summer residence of the Hapsburgs, this former royal residence now houses a range of world-class museums and galleries. The palace also hosts a superb Christmas market, specialising in traditional handicrafts and nostalgic toys. After tonight’s excellent dinner on board, retire to the lounge for a nightcap and enjoy a classical Christmas recital – a fitting musical finale to our day as the ship glides away from this captivating city.

Day 7 : Budapest

fernweh_stories
sotiris_pantera
luisalopesphotography

Location: Budapest

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We have sailed overnight and on waking, draw back the curtains to see the early morning mist rising over this gentle pastoral landscape, draped in a blanket of glistening frost. After breakfast, seek out a good vantage spot in the lounge, sink into a comfy chair and watch this lovely slideshow of winter wonderland scenery effortlessly gliding by – what could be more relaxing! For the more energetic, perhaps a visit to the ship’s fitness centre to work off some of those delicious meals or head up to the sun deck to enjoy the bracing river breeze as the Captain skilfully navigates our return course to the Hungarian capital. Our final lunch is served during which Budapest’s majestic skyline comes into view. 



Budapest is always an atmospheric and fascinating city, but at this time of the year, the muted colours of its magnificent archaic spires and grand domes are especially captivating on the wintry skyline. The historic and palatial buildings, the superb Roman ruins and exquisite Art Nouveau architecture provide a truly impressive backdrop for the city’s acclaimed Christmas markets.



This afternoon we enjoy a guided tour seeing the main sights such as the iconic Parliament Building and the ancient Castle District with its winding streets and panoramic views. There’s free time to explore under your own steam and wander the markets. Soak up the traditional atmosphere as classical music fills the air along with the delicious smells of spicy gingerbread and peppery goulash – and don’t forget the mulled wine to stave off the winter chill!



This evening the magnificent Captain’s Dinner closes with a Hungarian Christmas folklore show, giving you time to bid farewell to your travelling companions and reflect on all the inspirational places, sights and sounds you have experienced on this very magical festive cruise. 

Day 8 : Return Home

fernweh_stories
sotiris_pantera
luisalopesphotography

Location: Budapest

Meals Included: Breakfast

Transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK.

Ship Details

MS William Wordsworth

Image Of Ship

It is extremely difficult to convey just how extraordinary this outstanding ship really is and exactly what distinguishes it from similar vessels. It would be very easy to just say ‘luxurious’ but it’s much more than that; we have deliberately avoided the current trend for a minimalist style where you could be anywhere in the world, creating instead a unique yet exquisite blend of understated taste, style and elegance at the highest level. Immediately striking is just how exceptionally spacious this new vessel is as you enter a gleaming, richly coloured marble-floored lobby flooded with natural light from a stunning atrium above. Moving inside, exceptional creativity from Europe’s finest design studio has produced a superbly balanced masterpiece of onboard style, utilising sustainable rich hardwoods, gleaming brass and polished copper, sparkling glass and intricate wrought iron. The ship is beautifully illuminated throughout – including the exterior and imaginatively furnished with harmonious colour schemes, all designed to create the serene atmosphere reflective of the golden age of cruising which time after time you tell us you adore.

The restaurant rivals the finest on shore establishments taking fine dining to another level complemented by delicate European porcelain, gleaming glassware and the intuitive service in which the Swiss excel. This superb vessel carries 44 in-house trained crew members serving just 169 guests (similar size vessels may carry well over 190 passengers) giving the ratio which our experience proves is concurrent with our first class service levels.

Furthermore your suite will easily exceed your expectations for not only will you enjoy the most discerning décor, so too the ship’s dimensions afford the ultimate in space and comfort - a minimum 16 square metres (172 square feet), with upgrades available to ‘Superior’ and ‘Deluxe’ accommodation.

Ship Name:

MS William Wordsworth

Adults Only Areas:

kids allowed

Ship Children Facilities:

none

Ship Nursery:

none

Smoking Areas:

some

Ship Size:

boutique

Ship Style:

luxury

Ship Type:

river

Ship Kind:

Riverboat

Ship Currency:

EUR

Ship Language:

en

Ship Capacity:

167

Ship Crew Count:

44

Number of Decks:

3

Number of Cabins:

86

Ship Launch Year:

2018

Ship Length (Meters):

135 M

Ship Width (Meters):

12 M

Ship Speed (Knots):

13 Kn

Diamond Deck

BistroTravel DeskReceptionSouvenir ShopPanorama LoungeBarSuperior Stern SuitesDiamond Deck SuitesDeluxe Balcony SuitesSuperior Suites

Emerald Deck

Fitness CentreHairdresserWellness CentreEmerald Deck Suites

Ruby Deck

RestaurantKitchenRuby Deck SuitesSuperior Suites

Sun Deck

Sun LoungersSplash PoolPutting GreenWheelhouse

Your suite will easily exceed your expectations for not only will you enjoy the most discerning décor, so too the ship’s dimensions afford the ultimate in space and comfort - a minimum 16 square metres (172 square feet), with upgrades available to ‘Superior’ and ‘Deluxe’ accommodation.

Suite (Emerald) (Grade ES E )

Suites on the Emerald Deck are slightly smaller, measuring approximately 16 square metres (172 square feet) and have smaller fixed windows.Some are available for sole occupancy with no supplement and are subject to availability.

Suite (Grade D ES E R )

A gleaming wood door opens revealing your exceptionally appointed suite. At 17 square metres (183 square feet), its generous dimensions are amongst the largest you will find on a cruiser gracing any European river. Imaginatively designed and appointed to the highest specification, with all the luxury you would expect to find in a smart ‘boutique style’ hotel, your comfort definitely won’t be compromised on any level!The gleaming marble bathroom features a powerful fully glazed shower with a large ‘rainshower’ head, superbly refreshing after a hard day’s sightseeing. Clever design allows for ample space, and contemporary lighting, complimentary cosmetics by ‘Crabtree and Evelyn’ and fluffy towels, makes preparing for the day ahead an absolute pleasure.The chic styling of a talented designer’s eye extends to the entire suite with generous use of hand-crafted tropical hardwoods blended with premium fittings, discreet thoughtful lighting and a colour scheme of calming neutral tones, creating an ambience to put you in the most relaxed frame of mind from the very first minute! A full size bed assures a good night’s rest in crisp cotton linen of the finest quality - a turndown service each evening adds the finishing touch. Please note all suites have two twin beds with individual bedding which can be moved together or separated accordingly.You will enjoy a particularly generous seating area with two chairs and a table, enabling you to unwind in comfort in the privacy of your own suite whilst a bow camera conveys live images of the ship’s progress to your flat screen TV, ensuring you won’t miss a thing. Careful consideration has been given to the tiniest details with individually controlled air-conditioning so you set the temperature that you desire, a hairdryer, safe, minibar, telephone and the convenience of tea (our meticulous planning even extends to familiar teabags!) and coffee making facilities ensure a familiar home from home experience.Suites on the Diamond and Ruby Decks have ‘French Balconies’ – panoramic floor to ceiling sliding glass doors bringing riverside life just that little closer! Indulge in the luxury of Riviera Plus when you stay in an upper deck cabin or suite. In your well-appointed cabin, you’ll find a smart handset* with maps, translator and currency converter, unlimited internet use, L’Occitane en Provence toiletries, a bottle of chilled Prosecco on arrival, a platter of fresh seasonal fruits during the cruise and an aperitif each evening, with our compliments. *Smart handsets will be available on 2022 holiday departures.

Suites (Diamond and Ruby) (Grade D R )

A gleaming wood door opens revealing your exceptionally appointed suite. At 17 square metres (183 square feet), its generous dimensions are amongst the largest you will find on a cruiser gracing any European river. Imaginatively designed and appointed to the highest specification, with all the luxury you would expect to find in a smart ‘boutique style’ hotel, your comfort definitely won’t be compromised on any level!The gleaming marble bathroom features a powerful fully glazed shower with a large ‘rainshower’ head, superbly refreshing after a hard day’s sightseeing. Clever design allows for ample space, and contemporary lighting, complimentary cosmetics by ‘Crabtree and Evelyn’ and fluffy towels, makes preparing for the day ahead an absolute pleasure.The chic styling of a talented designer’s eye extends to the entire suite with generous use of hand-crafted tropical hardwoods blended with premium fittings, discreet thoughtful lighting and a colour scheme of calming neutral tones, creating an ambience to put you in the most relaxed frame of mind from the very first minute! A full size bed assures a good night’s rest in crisp cotton linen of the finest quality - a turndown service each evening adds the finishing touch. Please note all suites have two twin beds with individual bedding which can be moved together or separated accordingly.You will enjoy a particularly generous seating area with two chairs and a table, enabling you to unwind in comfort in the privacy of your own suite whilst a bow camera conveys live images of the ship’s progress to your flat screen TV, ensuring you won’t miss a thing. Careful consideration has been given to the tiniest details with individually controlled air-conditioning so you set the temperature that you desire, a hairdryer, safe, minibar, telephone and the convenience of tea (our meticulous planning even extends to familiar teabags!) and coffee making facilities ensure a familiar home from home experience.Suites on the Diamond and Ruby Decks have ‘French Balconies’ – panoramic floor to ceiling sliding glass doors bringing riverside life just that little closer! Indulge in the luxury of?Riviera Plus?when you stay in an upper deck cabin or suite. In your well-appointed cabin, you’ll find a range of extras to make your experience extra special. 

Suite (Diamond and Ruby) (Grade D R )

A gleaming wood door opens revealing your exceptionally appointed suite. At 17 square metres (183 square feet), its generous dimensions are amongst the largest you will find on a cruiser gracing any European river. Imaginatively designed and appointed to the highest specification, with all the luxury you would expect to find in a smart ‘boutique style’ hotel, your comfort definitely won’t be compromised on any level!The gleaming marble bathroom features a powerful fully glazed shower with a large ‘rainshower’ head, superbly refreshing after a hard day’s sightseeing. Clever design allows for ample space, and contemporary lighting, complimentary cosmetics by ‘Crabtree and Evelyn’ and fluffy towels, makes preparing for the day ahead an absolute pleasure.The chic styling of a talented designer’s eye extends to the entire suite with generous use of hand-crafted tropical hardwoods blended with premium fittings, discreet thoughtful lighting and a colour scheme of calming neutral tones, creating an ambience to put you in the most relaxed frame of mind from the very first minute! A full size bed assures a good night’s rest in crisp cotton linen of the finest quality - a turndown service each evening adds the finishing touch. Please note all suites have two twin beds with individual bedding which can be moved together or separated accordingly.You will enjoy a particularly generous seating area with two chairs and a table, enabling you to unwind in comfort in the privacy of your own suite whilst a bow camera conveys live images of the ship’s progress to your flat screen TV, ensuring you won’t miss a thing. Careful consideration has been given to the tiniest details with individually controlled air-conditioning so you set the temperature that you desire, a hairdryer, safe, minibar, telephone and the convenience of tea (our meticulous planning even extends to familiar teabags!) and coffee making facilities ensure a familiar home from home experience.Suites on the Diamond and Ruby Decks have ‘French Balconies’ – panoramic floor to ceiling sliding glass doors bringing riverside life just that little closer! Indulge in the luxury of Riviera Plus when you stay in an upper deck cabin or suite. In your well-appointed cabin, you’ll find a smart handset* with maps, translator and currency converter, unlimited internet use, L’Occitane en Provence toiletries, a bottle of chilled Prosecco on arrival, a platter of fresh seasonal fruits during the cruise and an aperitif each evening, with our compliments. *Smart handsets will be available on 2022 holiday departures.

Deluxe Balcony Suites (Grade DBS )

If you’re looking to really spoil yourself, at a staggering 25 square metres (269 square feet), the world-class Diamond Deck Deluxe Balcony Suites are for you. Fifty percent larger than standard suites, they allow for an even more generous living area for the ultimate in space and comfort.In addition you will enjoy a private exterior balcony complete with table and chairs - perfect for an ‘al fresco’ breakfast should you wish or just a quiet morning coffee or a pre-dinner ‘sundowner’ whilst watching the world drift by.With the same fittings as standard suites, exquisitely and lavishly appointed to the very highest standard, plus complimentary soft cotton bathrobes and slippers adding the final little touch, this really is the epitome of river cruise luxury!Indulge in the luxury of?Riviera Plus?when you stay in an upper deck cabin or suite. In your well-appointed cabin, you’ll find a range of extras to make your experience extra special. 

Superior Suite (Grade RS DS DSS )

Bringing your cruise to another level, why not upgrade to a Superior Suite available on the Ruby and Diamond decks. Substantially larger at 23 square metres (247 sq. feet) and with the additional space devoted to the living area, you will immediately notice the benefit as you relax in your stylish surroundings. Of course the identical high quality furnishings and fittings as the standard suite are evident throughout, again with stunning views from the panoramic floor to ceiling sliding glass doors.Indulge in the luxury of?Riviera Plus?when you stay in an upper deck cabin or suite. In your well-appointed cabin, you’ll find a range of extras to make your experience extra special. 

Superior Suite (Grade RS DS DBS )

Bringing your cruise to another level, why not upgrade to a Superior Suite available on the Ruby and Diamond decks. Substantially larger at 23 square metres (247 sq. feet) and with the additional space devoted to the living area, you will immediately notice the benefit as you relax in your stylish surroundings. Of course the identical high quality furnishings and fittings as the standard suite are evident throughout, again with stunning views from the panoramic floor to ceiling sliding glass doors.Indulge in the luxury of Riviera Plus when you stay in an upper deck cabin or suite. In your well-appointed cabin, you’ll find a smart handset* with maps, translator and currency converter, unlimited internet use, L’Occitane en Provence toiletries, a bottle of chilled Prosecco on arrival, a platter of fresh seasonal fruits during the cruise and an aperitif each evening, with our compliments. *Smart handsets will be available on 2022 holiday departures.

Stunning restaurant on the Main Deck serving buffet breakfast, buffet lunch and four-course dinner 

Bistro

At the Bistro with its open kitchen, large panoramic windows and al fresco seating, enjoy a more intimate dining experience whilst taking in the fantastic views. Here in the evenings the chef presents his personal signature dishes to a small number of diners with menus varying according to the seasons; this intimate dining experience can be reserved on board at no extra charge. When the weather allows the panoramic windows may be fully opened on to the terrace to allow a delightful al fresco dining experience.

Main Restaurant

The ship’s restaurant is located on the Ruby (middle) Deck and here you will experience not only exceptional first class cuisine, but also the most attentive yet discreet service from the ship’s highly professional crew. So just sit back with a well-deserved glass of wine from the carefully selected wine list and delight in the wonderful elegance of your surroundings; beautifully laid tables of just 4 or 6 guests, crisp linen, deep wool carpets and warm wood panelling abound to offer a delectable dining experience of the highest order.

Enjoy cocktails in one of the bars onboard.

Panoramic Observation Lounge & Bar

The Diamond Deck is where you will find the very heart of the ship - the superb panoramic observation lounge and bar; a lounge in every sense of the word, complete with plenty of comfortable leather armchairs and sumptuous sofas where you can sink into warmly colourful cushions in beautiful quality fabrics with a freshly made cup of tea. A thick wool carpet feels lovely underfoot and the tasteful contemporary lighting above creates a welcoming and refined ambience, further complemented by the discreet and intuitive service resplendent of the finest five-star hotels. So just sit back with your favourite cocktail and take in the truly mesmerising view. After a superb dinner in the restaurant perhaps it’s time for a digestif accompanied by the soothing tones of the ship’s pianist. 

Sun Deck

Head on up to this truly spectacular deck and what could be better than watching life ashore slip by from the comfort of a sun lounger, perhaps under shade if the weather gets too hot! There’s always the refreshing splash pool too or why not try your hand on the putting green.

Sun Deck and Terrace

Head on up to this truly spectacular deck and what could be better than watching life ashore slip by from the comfort of a sun lounger, perhaps under shade if the weather gets too hot! There’s always the refreshing splash pool too or why not try your hand on the putting green. Then take a refreshingly long drink and that book you’ve been meaning to read for ages on to the lovely terrace area at the fore of the ship, located right in front of the wheelhouse where you can view the Captain and his team skilfully navigating the twisting river and enjoy truly ‘driving seat’ views. Take a deep breath and relax into the pace of river cruise life – now you’re really on holiday!

Terrace

Take a refreshingly long drink and that book you’ve been meaning to read for ages on to the lovely terrace area at the fore of the ship, located right in front of the wheelhouse where you can view the Captain and his team skilfully navigating the twisting river and enjoy truly ‘driving seat’ views.

Excursions

On our river cruises we love to take you right into the heart of each town or city you visit along the way, and during your cruise local guides will offer a variety of guided walking tours, panoramic coach tours and/or visits to museums and local cultural favourites such as a wine tasting in Burgundy and a train journey through the Swiss mountains. You will have a good mix of touring and free time to learn about the history and the little quirks of each place, with plenty of time to explore at your own leisure. Please check the itinerary of the cruise for more specific details.

Please note: there are no dedicated kids or teens facilities onboard.

On board you'll find a Spa and wellness area featuring Nail Salon and Hairdressing Service and Small splash pool and putting green on the Sun Deck.

Fitness Centre & Spa

On the Emerald (lower) Deck is the fitness centre, perfect for working off all those delicious meals or for something less strenuous treat yourself to a relaxing massage. So you will always look your best there is a hairdresser’s too which also offers manicure and pedicure treatments.

Sun Deck

Head on up to this truly spectacular deck and what could be better than watching life ashore slip by from the comfort of a sun lounger, perhaps under shade if the weather gets too hot! There’s always the refreshing splash pool too or why not try your hand on the putting green. Then take a refreshingly long drink and that book you’ve been meaning to read for ages on to the lovely terrace area at the fore of the ship, located right in front of the wheelhouse where you can view the Captain and his team skilfully navigating the twisting river and enjoy truly ‘driving seat’ views. Take a deep breath and relax into the pace of river cruise life – now you’re really on holiday!

Tips are not charged at a set percentage and are not included in the holiday cost, as we understand that giving a gratuity should be entirely at your discretion.

As a guideline we would recommend giving €8-12 per person per day should you feel that is appropriate. Usually, an envelope is left in your cabin on the final evening, for you to drop off at reception, if you choose to, the following morning. The tips are divided equally between the crew.

Should you also wish to give a gratuity directly to your Riviera Travel Cruise Director and Concierge, this is also at your discretion.

Age Restrictions

The minimum age limit is 12 years old at the date of departure. We reserve the right to limit the number of children on any particular cruise. Any minor must be accompanied by and share a cabin with an adult aged 21 or over. If the adult is not the minor’s parent, a ‘Parental Consent Guardianship Form’ must be signed by a parent or legal guardian prior to sailing.

Air Conditioning

Our ships are fully air-conditioned throughout. Each cabin has individual air-conditioning and heating controls.

Dietary Requirements

If you have made a special request, they will do their utmost to see that your wishes are carried out. However, they cannot guarantee that your requests will be met. 

Disabled Facilities

We want to ensure you make the correct choice before you book your holiday with us. If you have any concerns regarding the suitability of the holiday due to reduced mobility we would encourage you to contact us or call us on 01283 688 518 to discuss these concerns.MooringDue to the popularity of river cruising at some mooring places, or where our ship is moored alongside another vessel, access to the ship may be via the sun deck and require the navigation of steps so passengers must be able to walk on and off the ship themselves, without the use of crutches or other aids, as gangplanks can be positioned at a steep angle.On boardOur ships are not adapted for wheelchair access; if you are intending to take a wheelchair or mobility scooter with you, it is essential that you please contact us to let us know. Wheelchairs and mobility scooters can be used on excursions however cannot be used on board the ships due to safety reasons and must not be left in corridors, the lounge or restaurant or any other public areas, but must be stored at reception.River cruises operate with a smaller crew than ocean cruises and do not have the crew available to personally attend to passengers with reduced mobility; therefore, a travelling companion would need to be able to help with any physical needs.Whilst most of our ships have a lift on board, it does not operate to all decks.River cruising on European rivers offers the opportunity to take in the scenery from the comfort of the ship. If you are unable to do some of the shore excursions, your river cruise can still be enjoyable and worthwhile, so please contact us with any concerns or questions you may have.Shore ExcursionsFor our river cruises which include an extension and feature a hotel stay, the hotels we use have been chosen due to their location and standard, the facilities offered can differ, it is therefore important that we make the appropriate enquiries with our suppliers on your behalf to ensure any special needs or requests can be catered for.AccommodationFor our river cruises which include an extension and feature a hotel stay, the hotels we use have been chosen due to their location and standard, the facilities offered can differ, it is therefore important that we make the appropriate enquiries with our suppliers on your behalf to ensure any special needs or requests can be catered for.Overseas Transport ArrangementsAll of our tours involve coach travel. The coaches we use have not been adapted for wheelchair access.Air TravelWe are able to arrange airport assistance, from the check-in desk to the plane, for anyone with reduced mobility. This is a free service which must be arranged with the airline prior to travel. If you would like us to arrange this assistance for you it needs to be pre-booked more than 48 hours before your flight departs.EurostarIf you have reduced mobility and are travelling by Eurostar to your cruise, please contact us. Should you need to travel in your own wheelchair, Eurostar does have specially adapted wheelchair spaces which need to be pre-booked. If you would like assistance at St. Pancras, we can provide you with information and contact details for Eurostar Assist, although we cannot reserve this service for you directly.

Dress Code

There is no requirement to bring formal dress; smart/casual is acceptable for both day and evening as there is no dress code enforced. However men are requested not to wear shorts for dinner or vest tops at any time in the dining room. Men may wish to wear a jacket and tie for dinner. The Captain’s Dinner offers the opportunity, should you wish, for more special attire.

Drinks Packages

We offer a selection of drinks packages available to purchase and the price is dependent on the length of the cruise, so please check each tour page for more details. This includes the following with lunch and dinner: draught beer; non-alcoholic beer; soft drinks; juices; red, white and rose house wines; and wine recommendations from the menu. The drinks package must be added to your booking for all passengers in a cabin prior to departure and you can do this by calling the reservations team.If you choose not to purchase a drinks package, there is a vast selection of drinks on board each ship available for individual purchase. 

Laundry Service

A limited laundry service is available on board, except on the day of disembarkation. A dry cleaning service is not available.

Medical Facilties

If you have any concerns about your health whilst on tour, please see your Cruise Director or Concierge. They will be able to advise you about chemists and availability of doctors, etc. In an emergency you could always phone our emergency number as issued on your itinerary. There are no on-board medical personnel, although specific crew members will have basic first aid training. However, the ship can stop at any time to transfer any passenger requiring emergency medical attention to local medical facilities.

Onboard Lifts

On the MS Emily Brontë, MS Oscar Wilde, MS Thomas Hardy, MS Robert Burns, MS William Wordsworth, MS George Eliot, MS Douro Elegance and MS Douro Splendour there is a lift between all three internal decks but not the sun deck. All other ships have lifts, but these do not operate to the lower deck or the sun deck; with the exception of the MS Swiss Ruby which has no lift.

Smoking and E-Cigarette Policy

Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is not permitted anywhere on board except for designated areas on the sun deck.More and more countries in Europe are adopting a stricter legislation on smoking in public places. Smoking is not allowed on any public transport and there may be other restrictions in hotels, bars and restaurants.

Special Dietary Requirements

In the morning a full breakfast is served which includes healthy options and your choice of eggs made to order. For lunch enjoy salads from the buffet, soup and a choice of main courses, including local dishes, plus dessert. The four course a la carte dinners include a selection of international and regional specialities. We cater for most dietary requirements, please ensure you advise our sales team when making the booking.

What's Included

  • Accommodation

    Seven nights on board in your choice of luxury cabin or suite, with winter river views

  • Airport Transfers at Destination

  • Fully Guided

    The services of a Riviera Travel cruise director and concierge

  • International Travel

    Return flights & transfers

  • Meals

    Full board from dinner on your day of arrival until breakfast on your final day; if you choose to travel with us on any of the full day excursions by coach, a packed lunch will be provided. Anyone choosing to stay on the ship may of course have lunch in the restaurant

  • Welcome cocktails

  • Christmas Day Gala dinner

  • Live Christmas classical quartet recital on board

  • Hungarian Christmas folklore show on board

  • Morning/afternoon tea and coffee

show more

What's Not Included

  • Tipping and Gratuity

  • Insurance

Check out our Q&As

  • Are airport transfers included in this tour?

    Yes

  • Are all the relevant entry visa’s included in the price of the tour?

    No

  • Is there any free time to explore places during the tour?

    As detailed in the itinerary

  • Are flights included in this tour?

    Return flights & transfers

  • Are children permitted to take part in the tour?

    For cruises, the minimum age limit is 12 years old at the date of departure. We reserve the right to limit the number of children on any particular cruise.

  • Will there be an escort accompanying this tour?

    Yes

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    For almost 40 years

  • I have reduced mobility; can I still travel?

    We want to ensure you make the correct choice before you book your holiday with us. If you have any concerns regarding the suitability of the holiday due to reduced mobility we would encourage you to contact us to discuss these concerns

  • Do I require travel insurance?

    It is a condition of booking that you carry suitable travel insurance.

  • What is my luggage allowance?

    You will receive details of your luggage allowance with your final travel documents, which are sent approximately 10 days prior to your date of departure.

Reviews of this operator

David Clarke (Google Reviewer)  

This review is for the...

08-Aug-2023

This review is for the italian Lake Como trip Aug 1-8 Wow what a trip. Riviera from start to finish were excellent the booking and help line answering questions were very good and clear. The travel booklet you get is laid out that it is simple to read and follow with step by step info from booking in to flights to meeting the guides. Our guide Matt Purse was just the best guide and real credit to Riviera with his knowledge and straight forward approach to running the trips. Matt kept us informed and told us all the sort of info you want to know without going over the top....This chap should teach other reps ..thank you so much. The coaches they use are all clean and well equipped with usb chargers and have aircon. The places chosen to visit were well researched even down to where coaches park or drop you off. The Bernina Express was the highlight for our family and matts photo tip was welcomed. The only down point was the hotel,a little dated and evening meal in main restuarant was a bit of a let down. I think we were lucky with our room on level 7 and with balcony as the walls are very thin and noise travels. We would book again with riviera

Barbara Shillaker (Google Reviewer)  

I have been on three...

11-Jan-2024

I have been on three trips with Riviera Travel so far, with two more booked during 2024. Highly recommended. Excellent tour guides. Great program of visits. Great hotels used.

Julie Berry (Google Reviewer)  

What a fantastic holiday to...

29-May-2024

What a fantastic holiday to Canada on the Rocky Mountaineer & Alaska Cruise. If you are thinking of booking this do it right now. From start to finish everything was great. The hotels, the transport and the cruise. The rep was absolutely fabulous. If you have ‘B’ as your rep you will make a friend. She is so full of knowledge. We went on this trip with strangers and left it as friends.

Mrs Bodnarec (Google Reviewer)  

Thankyou Riviera and all the...

28-Apr-2024

Thankyou Riviera and all the staff on the William Wordsworth Danube River cruise. My husband and i have just travelled on the Danube to celebrate my husbands 60th and we had such a lovely experience. We were younger than most of the travellers but we met so many lovely people so this wasnt a problem. The staff were so lovely and professional. The service we experienced was so high. The boat was beautiful, the food amazing and the excursions were informative and well managed. I would definately recommend riviera as a company. In fact we are now considering their Japan holiday.

Valerie Pascoe  

We would go again in a heartbeat

22-Jan-2022

Oh my goodness, what a relief it was to actually get away! Full marks to all at Riviera for keeping us up to date before our trip and for the help so cheerfully and patiently given with the extra admin that Covid brought our way. We felt totally safe with the measures taken on board, thank you very much for this. Without exception, Staff were fantastic and our every need was attended to. The additional Covid testing ran smoothly, organised by our Riviera Reps. The guided tours were most interesting: the guides very knowledgeable and more importantly, interesting to listen to. We loved this trip and would do it again in a heartbeat. Thank you again Riviera, you were FAB!

Chris Wilson (Google Reviewer)  

Second escorted tour with this...

25-Jul-2022

Second escorted tour with this company. Did 5 days in Iceland tour. Everything went smoothly, excellent tour guide, Per. Extremely knowledgeable and interesting guy. Very friendly too. Highly recommend. Just let down by the room given at the hotel, but I guess the travel company doesn't have control over this.

Christine Hardy (Google Reviewer)  

Although most people seem to...

10-Mar-2024

Although most people seem to book and pay for their holidays online, because we live close by we prefer to make a personal visit. In my opinion if they are offering this as an option they should be better equipped to accommodate visits in person. We have not been on our river cruise yet, so can't comment on that yet.

Norma Patrick (Google Reviewer)  

Recently went on a tour...

18-May-2024

Recently went on a tour of the Deep South USA plus Texas. Before we set off on the trip we were informed that our trip On the Amtrak train would not be going ahead and we were given a £50 refund each. We were disappointed especially as there was no consultation beforehand and to only receive £50 each in compensation was poor. This was one of the reasons we had chosen Riviera Travel and may have considered another company had we been given the choice. Despite this we had a fabulous holiday, although we thought the tour guide was poor. There was no music played whilst we were traveling on the coach and when asked if more could be played we received a flat ‘no’. If we had relied on the tour guide all the time we wouldn’t have gone anywhere. However we ignored his comments that Nashville was ‘mad’ and went downtown and had the best night. All in all we had a wonderful holiday but it could have been better from Riviera Travel point of view. This is a very expensive tour and we thought the standard of hotels were very poor in some places. Probably would try a different tour company next time.

S BP (Google Reviewer)  

Delayed writing this review as...

16-Jul-2024

Delayed writing this review as I wanted to see if my frustrations dampened but they have not and it gives me no pleasure to write the following. Have travelled with Riviera previously without issue, and in fact loved everything. However on the latest riviera cruise from Budapest the vegetarian food offering was way below par and indeed it was clear there were times they cross contaminated between veggie and meat/fish. Staff on the cruise seemed unable to improve the issues and indeed on occasion the attempt to say they were giving this full attention resulted in even worse food. On return my complaint was dealt with quickly and we were refunded what in effect would be the cost of the food element of the cruise without delay. There was no recognition however that the marketing references to fine dining were in fact misleading. The individual who dealt with the complaint mentioned more than once that she had tried the vegetarian food on another ship Riviera use (it's the same two week rotating menu all season across the fleet) and found it to be good; pleased to hear, that doesn't help me does it! And totally ignored the fact that on a cruise you can't exactly jump ashore to supplement your food if it is poor, which meant there were occasions I went to bed hungry as it was truly that bad or lacking in quantity and food is such an integral part of the trip when you are basically held captive. I even bought my own extras when ashore for the chef to add to my meals like smoked tofu which they had the audacity to present to me at the special chefs dinner as cheese they had sourced! Very poor complaint handling that lacked real empathy, did not address all the points I raised and we all know escalating to the ombudsman is pointless as they are a toothless shark. Pictures shown are a main course for dinner - Pad Thai that was actually rice sticks with carrot and pine nuts, two tiny samosas & lettuce while the non veggies had shrimp skewers that were apparently delicious and roasted vegetable pie that was two mm of chopped veg with an inch of mash in top! The cruise itself was lovely but completely marred by the food and Riviera have now lost my business.

Barbara Parkes (Google Reviewer)  

Presently in Croatia staying at...

22-Sep-2023

Presently in Croatia staying at Arauana Hotel, supposedly a 4 star property, but wouldn't give it any star rating. Rooms are small and dirty. Wallpaper blistering. Meals served in a shed like lean-to. Food like warm, greasy and always self service. Second holiday with Riviera this year and neither at standard advertised. Have travelled with them previously and everything was fine, but standards have really dropped. Have booked a holiday with them next year and now dreading it. Certainly don't provide the standard advertised. We have never stayed in such a hovel and have visited youngsters in back packers accommodation which was far better than this supposedly 4 star accommodation. There are no indoor bars or lounges only a shed as a so called restaurant. Absolutely disgusting. Won't be boking with them again

Book with Confidence

  • Low Deposit

    Riviera Travel requires a minimum deposit of 500 GBP per person or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 101 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of riviera travel charges.

    Up to 101 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

    At 100 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 60 days before tour starts: Forfeit 70% of booking price.

    At 30 days before tour starts: Forfeit 90% of booking price.

    At 14 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

Why book with tourhub?

Safe & Secure

Your money is held in a segregated client account until you travel.

Visa logo Mastercard logo

100% Guaranteed Refunds if your trip is cancelled.


The safest way to make overseas, multi-currency payments.

Guaranteed Best Value

Industry leading discounts, we won't be beaten on price.


No cancellation or amendment fees from tourhub.

(Operator terms may apply)

Expert Knowledge

Reliable & unbiased advice from travel experts.


Direct contact with the tour operator via our messaging service.


Inspiration & advice from a community of 6000+ real travellers, influencers & content creators.

Trusted Service

Official partners & licensed agents of 1000+ tour operators worldwide.


Don't just take our word for it...

"Tourhub: Friendliness, Professionalism & Integrity I would happily give tourhub a 6* review if I could..."

Similar Tours

Travel Guru Features

Our Reviews