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CHRISTMAS IN THE HEART OF GERMANY - CATEGORY E - 2018

In Wiesbaden, board your ship decorated and dressed up in Christmas colors, and embark on this festive Christmastime river cruise through the heart of Germany—ending with two nights in marvelous Prague, Czech Republic.

On the banks of the Main River, behind medieval walls and towered gates, is the picturesque Bavarian village of Miltenberg. Take a step back in time during your guided walk of this cultural gem with half-timbered houses and narrow streets. Celebrate the season in charming Würzburg, known as the “Pearl of the Romantic Road,” and surrounded by sloping hills covered with vineyards. Visit the ornate Bishop’s Residenz—home to the largest ceiling fresco ever painted, then stroll through the Christmas markets while you sip Glühwein (hot mulled wine). Continue your Christmastime river cruise to Bamberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where the many nativity scenes exhibited throughout the town are sure to delight. Then Nuremberg, where, after your guided tour, you are free to visit the Christmas market, one of the most famous in the world. Be sure to savor some traditional lebkuchen (spicy gingerbread), a Nuremberg specialty. While on board, you’ll also learn how to bake a traditional cookie and hear all about German Christmas traditions. Disembark your ship and travel to Prague, Czech Republic—a 1,200-year-old city preserved in time. Stand in front of the medieval Astronomical Clock, walk across Charles Bridge, and browse the Christmas markets where rows of brightly decorated wooden huts sell Christmas tree ornaments, wooden toys, and Czech handicrafts. And you can’t miss the beautifully decorated tree in Old Town!

Historical treasures of Germany and magnificent Prague are perfectly paired with the sights, sounds, and tastes of the joyous holiday season on this unforgettable European river cruise.

Inclusions

7 breakfasts
7 lunches
7 dinners
Tour Provider Avalon Waterways
Number of Days
8
Price From
AUD $2,996
Start Location
Frankfurt, Germany
End Location
Prague, Germany
Age Range
Avg. 40+
Group Size
20 to 44
Tour Style
Comfort
Tour Themes
Small Marine/Cruise
Physical Rating
Easy to Moderate
Tour departure dates
StartEndAvailabilityPrice
02 Dec 201809 Dec 2018Stop SalesAUD $2,996
ItineraryExpand
Day 1: FRANKFURT, GERMANY-WIESBADEN (EMBARKATION).
Welcome to Germany! This afternoon, transfer from Frankfurt to Wiesbaden to board your ship. Meet your crew at a welcome reception before dinner, as you set sail along the Main River. (NOTE: Flights into Frankfurt must arrive by 3 p.m. Guests must be on board ship by 5 p.m.) (D)
Day 2: MILTENBERG.
Tucked away behind medieval defensive walls and towered gates, the picturesque Bavarian village of Miltenberg is a cultural gem on the banks of the Main River. This morning's GUIDED WALK will acquaint you with the town's delightful Marktplatz (market square), which centres around a Renaissance-era fountain and features striking half-timbered buildings, cobblestone lanes, and one of the oldest inns in Germany, Haus zum Riesen (the giant's house) and the gothic splendour of the Merchant Hall. Later, continue your cruise on the Main River to Wurzburg and enjoy a COOKIE-BAKING DEMONSTRATION on board. (B,L,D)
Day 3: WURZBURG.
Known as the "Pearl of the Romantic Road," Wurzburg is surrounded by sloping hills covered with vineyards. The city makes an immediate impression with imposing Marienberg Fortress perched above town and the 15th-century Alte Mainbrucke (Old Main Bridge). On your GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR, visit the magnificent baroque BISHOP'S RESIDENZ, home to the largest ceiling fresco ever painted. This afternoon, you are free to explore the beautifully decorated streets on your own, visit the Christmas markets, or perhaps join an optional excursion to medieval Rothenburg, where you will have the opportunity to visit the Christmas Museum. Here, try a Schneeball (snowball), a local specialty not at all suitable for a diet! (B,L,D)
Day 4: BAMBERG.
Learn everything about Christmas traditions during an ONBOARD LECTURE this morning. In the afternoon, focus on medieval Bamberg, former residence of one of Germany's most powerful imperial dynasties and today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your GUIDED WALKING TOUR takes in its historic centre, including the great 13th-century Romanesque cathedral and the fascinating Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall)-built on an island in the middle of the Regnitz River when the bishop refused to give the townspeople land for a town hall! This time of year, the town is decked out for Christmas. Especially interesting are the many nativity scenes built by local citizens and exhibited throughout the town. Enjoy the Christmas market, where, in addition to candles and decorations, you'll find regional delicacies such as gingerbread and nut bread. (B,L,D)
Day 5: NUREMBERG.
Although 90% of Nuremberg's Old Town suffered extensive damage during WWII, much of it has been restored to the glory it once knew as the unofficial capital of the Holy Roman Empire. Choose either a GUIDED SIGHTSEEING TOUR and marvel at this thousand-year-old city's medieval fortifications, gothic churches, and the Kaiserburg (Imperial Castle), or join a more specialized NUREMBERG RALLY GROUNDS tour. The Old Town is illuminated with festive lights and decorations, and the Christmas market is one of the most famous in the world. You'll find dozens of stalls offering traditional wares, including Nuremberg Lebkuchen (spicy gingerbread), baked goods and sweets, Christmas decorations, ornaments, and more. Shuttle service to the ship will be at your disposal. (B,L,D)
Day 6: NUREMBERG (DISEMBARKATION)-PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC.
After breakfast today, bid your crew farewell and travel by motorcoach to Prague, the "Golden City." (B)
Day 7: PRAGUE.
Prague is a 1,200-year-old city preserved in time. See its best-known treasures, such as the Old Town's Astronomical Clock, built in 1410 and once the envy of all of Europe; HRADEANY CASTLE GROUNDS; St. Vitus Cathedral; and the Charles Bridge, the oldest bridge in Prague. Browse the Christmas markets, where rows of brightly decorated wooden huts sell Christmas tree ornaments, wooden toys, and Czech handicrafts. Get a little inner warmth with a cup of svarene vino (hot mulled wine) and a traditional hot sausage. The beautifully decorated tree in the Old Town is an impressive sight. (B)
Day 8: PRAGUE.
Your holiday ends after breakfast. (B)