Explore Austria via the Danube River.
Flowing through 10 European countries, the Danube River is the second-longest on the continent. It stretches more than 2,870 kilometres from the German Black Forest in the west to the Black Sea in Romania – winding its way through dozens of historic European countries including Hungary, Austria, Ukraine and Slovakia.
Recently, the opportunity to see the wonders of Eastern Europe have opened up significantly, and what better way to see this part of the world than on the water? Through providers such as Tauck, you can cruise the Danube at a leisurely pace – stopping and experiencing all the grandeur of the region.
This is exactly what FBI Travel’s Michelle Adler did, setting sail from Regensburg, Germany to Vienna, Austria, but not before spending a few days in Prague, Czech Republic.
Czech into Prague
Before embarking on the Danube Tauck River Cruise, Michelle spent a few days in Prague – staying at the historic Intercontinental Prague where she received the documentation needed for the cruise. In perfect location for the old Jewish area and within walking distance to all major tourist attractions such as the Charles Bridge, Michelle was able to recount her steps more than 20 years since her last trip to this historic city.
While Prague isn’t on the Danube, it still provides an ideal start the tour – with a welcome cocktail party and dinner on the rooftop of the Intercontinental. Michelle met and talked to her fellow travellers for the next week, while also enjoy the sparkling Prague skyline. Of course, the real action would start the next day as the party left by bus, bound for Regensburg, Germany – the launch point of the Tauck cruise!
Meeting Ms Savor and getting settled
At capacity, the 443-foot Ms Savor cruise ship can hold 130 passengers. On this occasion, Michelle was one of 92 guests, with the majority coming from the United States and being around 60-65 years old. However, the age demographics were spread with many middle-aged couples and even a few families.
Michelle described her cabin as spacious with a good sized bathroom and plenty of room to store luggage. Fitted out with a “very comfortable” bed with soft pillows and doona, Michelle was able to use her room to relax while enjoying the minibar and large sliding door for fresh air.
One of the first elements that Michelle noticed was the wonderful Tauck travel experience as absolutely everything was included, drinks, touring and gratuities. With incredible on-board service, delicious meal options around the clock and vibrant staff – guests are treated like royalty and nothing is too much trouble for the Tauck team.
In fact, with a piano player in the lounge and local entertainment coming onboard when the ship is docked, there is never ending fun and enjoyment on the Ms Savor!
Hopping on and off
A cruise on the Danube River isn’t limited to the meandering river – you are given the opportunity to stop and explore countless towns along the way – rejoining the ship after a day on dry land. Michelle said you would normally depart the ship at around 8.30 a.m. for touring and return around 12 p.m. for lunch on-board. If you chose an excursion that was a further distance away, Tauck would include lunch whilst touring.
Before breakfast you get to choose your activity, each of which accompanied by a Tauck Tour Director and local guide. Of course, you could also choose not to join any tour and either stay on-board or explore the town on foot or with the provided bikes. The daily schedule would be to exchange your cabin key for a shore pass prior to departing the ship and then change back when you returned, that way they knew if you were back onboard or not!
Danube River Cruise highlights
The seven-night cruise offered Michelle many great opportunities to explore this special part of Europe. Here is a snapshot of what she experienced.
- Cesky Krumlov (Czech Republic) – Exiting the cruise at Passau, Michelle visited Cesky Krumlov – a divine Medieval town listed as a UNESCO world heritage site.
- Grein (Austria) – Between 1938 and 1945, the Mauthausen concentration camp saw one of the greatest number of Soviet and Polish citizens killed by the Nazis. Michelle participated in a poignant guided walking tour which was emotional at times, but noted the historic importance of paying her respects to the fallen.
- Bratislava (Slovakia) – A city rich in both history and charm, Bratislava highlights include the Jewish museum and the Jewish cemetery – Chatam Sofer Memorial.
- Vienna (Austria) – The final stop of this cruise, Michelle and her fellow guests enjoyed a fabulous farewell dinner at Palais Pallavicini – one of Vienna’s traditional palaces. With Viennese music, ballet dancers, opera singers, harp players and pianists – Michelle describes it as an “amazing” last night.
If you would like to learn more about Tauck river cruises, feel free to get in touch with Michelle and the team at FBI Travel on 1800 FLY FBI.