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Danube Holiday Markets

7-Night Cruise from Budapest to Passau (or reverse)

Cruise & Rail: Venice & the Swiss Alps

Danube Holiday Markets Map
2024 & 2025 Departure Dates & Pricing

Budapest to Passau (or reverse) - 8 days

Ship - S.S. Maria Theresa , River Princess

Detailed Itinerary: Budapest to Passau

Skip to Passau to Budapest itinerary

Day 1: Budapest, Hungary (Embarkation)

Arrive at the Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport. If your cruise package includes a group arrival transfer, or if you have purchased a private arrival transfer, you will be greeted by a cruise representative and transferred to the ship.

Day 2: Budapest

Located on opposite sides of the Danube, Buda and Pest each have their own distinctive character and allure. You’ll get a taste of this dynamic capital city with your choice of tours, and visit Budapest’s celebrated Christmas Market—one of the largest in Europe. Christmas has been celebrated in Budapest for a thousand years, since the time of St. Stephen, the king who founded the nation of Hungary and encouraged the spread of Christianity throughout his realm, but the city began as a Roman encampment almost a millennium before that. Over the centuries it was controlled by Germans, Austrians, Ottomans, and Communists, all of whom have left traces.

A special Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

Choice of Budapest City Tour with Christmas Market -OR- Budapest Walk with Local Treats and Christmas Market

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 3: Cruising the Danube River - Bratislava, Slovakia

Featured Excursion: Bratislava Walking Tour with Christmas Market

Once hidden from the world behind the “Iron Curtain,” Slovakia retains an air of mystery and intrigue, and its small capital city has an unexpectedly colorful history. You’ll learn more about Bratislava’s past from a local expert and also visit the local Christmas Market—a relatively new (and thoroughly delightful) tradition for Slovakians. How do you say “Merry Christmas” in Slovak? “Veselé Vianoce!” The heart and soul of Slovakia, Bratislava is full of surprises. The city straddles the mighty Danube and has played a leading role in the politics and culture of the region for many centuries. Unlike cities with venerable Christmas Markets, Bratislava just established its first holiday market in 1993. But the Slovakians have quickly embraced the seasonal traditions of their Austrian and Hungarian neighbors—and you’ll get to embrace them as well.

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 4: Vienna, Austria

Featured Excursions: "Morning with the Masters" at the Vienna Art History Museum & Christmas Markets, "Taste of Christmas"Vienna Walking Tour

Renowned for its art and architecture, its classical music, its decadent pastries, and its lengthy list of famous former residents, the refined city of Vienna is a cultural treasure trove. Experience the city with your choice of tours, as well as something extra special—VIP access to an extraordinary collection of art.

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 5: Krems - Melk

Featured Excursion: Melk Village Stroll

Enjoy a handful of delightful excursions that inspire the holiday spirit in this beautiful millennium-old town and surrounding valley—both of which have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

You’ll want to find a comfortable seat in the lounge or on the Sun Deck today as your ship cruises through the Wachau Valley. Over the eons, the Danube cut a gorge through the foothills of the Bohemian Mountains, resulting in a 19-mile (30-kilometer) stretch of riverine scenery so beautiful; UNESCO declared it a World Heritage Landscape. Castle ruins dominate hilltops; baroque church towers appear on the riverbanks, marking historic villages and splendid abbeys; and vineyards and apricot orchards cling to the rocky slopes. Some of Austria’s finest white wines are produced from grapes grown on the dry-stone terraces above the river, where grapes were first planted 2,000 years ago.

Choice of Dürnstein Village Strollwith Spiced WineTasting and Organ Concert in a Monastery -OR- Krems Town Visit

Day 6: Linz (Salzburg)

Your ship docks at Linz, a modern yet historic city that extends across the shimmering waters of the Danube. From there, you’ll head to Mozart’s birthplace of Salzburg, which is nestled in a glorious alpine setting that sparkles like a winter wonderland this time of year. Fans of “The Sound of Music” may recognize locations from the Oscar-winning film in the city’s Old Town, the site of the grand cathedral and absolutely enchanting Christmas Market.

Choice of Full-Day Salzburg Walking tour with Christmas Market -OR- Linz Town & Country: Cider Farm Visit and Christmas Markets

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 7: Passau, Germany

Featured Excursion: Passau Walking Tour with Christmas Market

Passau is a crossroads in more ways than one—three rivers meet here and three nations nearly do, making for a fascinating cultural mosaic. Get to know the town with a guided stroll, then visit the local Christmas Market on the square in front of the cathedral. You’ll find a lot to enjoy here—from miniature houses and blown-glass ornaments to spun-sugar confections—in more than 70 stalls.

A special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 8: Passau (Disembark)

Disembark the ship in Passau. If your cruise package includes a group departure transfer, or if you have purchased a private departure transfer, you will be transferred to Munich Airport for your flight home.

Departures & Pricing

Detailed Itinerary: Passau to Budapest

Skip to Budapest to Passau itinerary

Day 1: Passau, Germany (Embarkation)

Arrive at Munich Airport. If your cruise package includes a group arrival transfer, or if you have purchased a private arrival transfer, you will be greeted by a cruise representative and transferred to the ship.

Day 2: Passau

Featured Excursion: Passau Walking tour with Christmas Market

Passau is a crossroads in more ways than one—three rivers meet here and three nations nearly do, making for a fascinating cultural mosaic. Get to know the town with a guided stroll, then visit the local Christmas Market on the square in front of the cathedral. You’ll find a lot to enjoy here—from miniature houses and blown-glass ornaments to spun-sugar confections—in more than 70 stalls.

A special Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 3: Linz (Salzburg), Austria

Your ship docks at Linz, a modern yet historic city that extends across the shimmering waters of the Danube. From there, you’ll head to Mozart’s birthplace of Salzburg, which is nestled in a glorious alpine setting that sparkles like a winter wonderland this time of year. Fans of “The Sound of Music” may recognize locations from the Oscar-winning film in the city’s Old Town, the site of the grand cathedral and absolutely enchanting Christmas Market.

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Choice of Full-Day Salzburg Walking Tour with Christmas Market -or- Linz Town and Country: Cider Farm Visit and Christmas Markets

Day 4: Cruising the Wachau Valley - Krems

Enjoy a handful of delightful excursions that inspire the holiday spirit in this beautiful millennium-old town and surrounding valley—both of which have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

You’ll want to find a comfortable seat in the lounge or on the Sun Deck today as your ship cruises through the Wachau Valley. Over the eons, the Danube cut a gorge through the foothills of the Bohemian Mountains, resulting in a 19-mile (30-kilometer) stretch of riverine scenery so beautiful; UNESCO declared it a World Heritage Landscape. Castle ruins dominate hilltops; baroque church towers appear on the riverbanks, marking historic villages and splendid abbeys; and vineyards and apricot orchards cling to the rocky slopes. Some of Austria’s finest white wines are produced from grapes grown on the dry-stone terraces above the river, where grapes were first planted 2,000 years ago.

Choice of Durnstein Village Strollwith Spiced Wine Tasting and Organ Concert in a Monastery -or- Krems Town Visit

Day 5: Vienna

Featured Excursions: "Morning with the Masters" at the Vienna Art History Museum & Christmas Markets, "Taste of Christmas" Vienna Walking Tour

Renowned for its art and architecture, its classical music, its decadent pastries, and its lengthy list of famous former residents, the refined city of Vienna is a cultural treasure trove. Experience the city with your choice of tours, as well as something extra special—VIP access to an extraordinary collection of art.. 

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 6: Cruising the Danube River - Bratislava, Slovakia

Featured Excursion: Bratislava Walking tour with Christmas Market

Once hidden from the world behind the “Iron Curtain,” Slovakia retains an air of mystery and intrigue, and its small capital city has an unexpectedly colorful history. You’ll learn more about Bratislava’s past from a local expert and also visit the local Christmas Market—a relatively new (and thoroughly delightful) tradition for Slovakians. How do you say “Merry Christmas” in Slovak? “Veselé Vianoce!” The heart and soul of Slovakia, Bratislava is full of surprises. The city straddles the mighty Danube and has played a leading role in the politics and culture of the region for many centuries. Unlike cities with venerable Christmas Markets, Bratislava just established its first holiday market in 1993. But the Slovakians have quickly embraced the seasonal traditions of their Austrian and Hungarian neighbors—and you’ll get to embrace them as well.

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Day 7: Budapest, Hungary

Located on opposite sides of the Danube, Buda and Pest each have their own distinctive character and allure. You’ll get a taste of this dynamic capital city with your choice of tours, and visit Budapest’s celebrated Christmas Market—one of the largest in Europe. Christmas has been celebrated in Budapest for a thousand years, since the time of St. Stephen, the king who founded the nation of Hungary and encouraged the spread of Christianity throughout his realm, but the city began as a Roman encampment almost a millennium before that. Over the centuries it was controlled by Germans, Austrians, Ottomans, and Communists, all of whom have left traces.

A special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

Please note that most Christmas Markets in Europe end their season on the 23rd of December and will not be available after that date.

Choice of Budapest Walk with Local Treats and Christmas Market -or- Budapest City with Christmas Markets

Day 8: Budapest (Disembark)

Disembark the ship in Budapest. If your cruise package includes a group departure transfer, or if you have purchased a private departure transfer, you will be transferred to Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport for your flight home.

Departures & Pricing

Advisements:

  • A valid passport is required for travel. Passports must be valid at least 6 months after the last day of travel.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • For reasons of navigation and passenger safety, the cruise operator and the Captain of the ship reserves the right to modify the itinerary of the cruise.
  • Travel Protection is recommended. Click here TG_logo for more information.

    Departures Dates & USD Rates

    Rates are PER PASSENGER sharing a twin cabin. Cruise fares are capacity controlled and are subject to change at any time without notice.
    Cruise Start Date (From Budapest)
    Ship
    Classic
    Deluxe
    French Balcony
    Deluxe Balcony
    Suite
    Grand Suite
    Dec 23, 2024
    Maria Theresa
    $3,899
    -
    $4,799
    $5,699
    $7,599
    -
    Nov 24, 2025
    River Princess
    $3,699
    $4,299
    $4,999
    -
    $6,999
    -
    Dec 2,2025
    Maria Theresa
    $3,999
    -
    $4,899
    $5,799
    $7,899
    $10,999
    Dec 8, 2025
    River Princess
    $3,699
    $4,299
    $4,999
    -
    $6,999
    -
    Dec 16, 2025
    Maria Theresa
    $3,699
    -
    $4,599
    $5,499
    $7,599
    $10,699
    Cruise Start Date (From Passau)
    Ship
    Classic
    Deluxe
    French Balcony
    Deluxe Balcony
    Suite
    Grand Suite
    Dec 1, 2025
    River Princess
    $3,699
    $4,299
    $4,999
    -
    $6,999
    -
    Dec 9, 2025
    Maria Theresa
    $3,999
    -
    $4,899
    $5,799
    $7,899
    $10,999
    Dec 15, 2025
    River Princess
    $3,499
    $4,099
    $4,799
    -
    $6,799
    -
    IMPORTANT: Dates, Prices & Itineraries are subject to change.
    Port charges: Additional $220 USD per person (2024 departure); Additional $230 USD per person (2025 departures)
    For Single Traveler: Single Supplement applies. Please Inquire.

Prices Include:

▪ 7-night Cruise in selected riverview stateroom 
▪ All meals onboard, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients
▪ 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
▪ Captain’s Welcome and Farewell Receptions
▪ Welcome and Farewell Dinners
▪ Unlimited beverages onboard including an extensive selection of distinctive wines, craft and regional beers, spirits, cocktails, and non-alcoholic beverage
▪ 6 days of excursions, including "Choice is Yours" options, all fully hosted by English-speaking local experts
▪ Guided “Taste of Christmas”program
▪ 4 UNESCO World Heritage sites
▪ Services of an experienced Cruise Manager and attentive, all English-speaking staff
▪ State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio headset system on all shore excursions
▪ Use of Nordic walking sticks throughout your cruise
▪ Captivating onboard local entertainment and lecture
▪ Cultural enrichment, including a Signature Lecture
▪ Gratuities for onboard personnel (ship staff, crew, Cruise / Tour Manager) during the cruise
▪ Free Internet and Wi-Fi access onboard
▪ Airport to ship// ship to airport group transfers on arrival and departure days. Transfers are subject to transfer guidelines. Please ask for details.
▪ Taxes

Prices Do Not Include:

▪ Individual arrival and departure (airfare)
▪ Travel insurance
▪ Gratuities for local drivers and tour guides
▪ Port charges
▪ Personal expenses

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