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How to decide which European river cruise to go on

Posted by on Dec 12, 2012 in Adventure | Comments Off on How to decide which European river cruise to go on

A river cruise is one of the best ways of seeing Europe in comfort. You are transported along calm water to some of the most spectacular cities and beautiful countryside on the continent.

Elbe

Discover the superb landscape and packed history of Western Bohemia and the former Eastern Germany on an Elbe River cruise. Start and finish at two of Europe’s most iconic cities, Berlin and Prague.

Elbe River cruise

Get acquainted with bustling, modern and cosmopolitan Berlin from the Brandenburg Gate to the chic cafes of the old East Berlin. Travel on to Potsdam to visit Frederick the Great’s 18th century Sans Souci Palace and onwards to Wittenberg, the home of Martin Luther and the cradle of the Reformation. See the rebuilt Frauenkirche in modern Dresden and sail onwards to the Czech border in the shadow of the Sudeten Mountains to the market town of Litomerice and then to Melnik, on the confluence of the Elbe and Vltava Rivers. Melnik is famous for its white wine that dates from the 14th century. Continue down the Vltava River, or by road to the stunning city of Prague. Enjoy the walk on the Charles Bridge that links the two parts of this beautiful old town.

Elbe River cruise1

Rhone/Saone

Food and wine come little better than on a cruise through Burgundy and Provence on the Rivers Saone and Rhone. Start in the heart of Burgundy at Chalon sur Saone and marvel at the multicoloured roofs of its 15th century Hospices. Don’t forget to taste the local Beaune wine. The Saone River meets the Rhine at Lyon, a city founded by Julius Caesar and the gastronomic capital of France. Make sure you visit the city church, Notre Dame de Fourviere and take in the view over Burgundy from the Croix Rousse Hill. Enjoy the wine and chocolate at Tournon and Viviers as you sail on to Avignon. Walk up the hill to the Palais des Papes and see the city’s famous unfinished bridge just round the corner. Arles, down river and where you finish the cruise, has a Roman Baths and amphitheatre as well as memories of the painter Van Gogh. If you have time, try some Bouillabaisse for lunch at Marseilles port, or travel over land to the French Riviera.

 River Saone

Danube

Sail through the middle of the continent along the European Union’s longest river, the Danube. It stretches from the Black Forest in Germany to the Black Sea on the borders of Romania, Bulgaria and Ukraine. Pick a stretch to travel along through Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania. Enjoy the Schonbrunn Palace and Spanish Riding School in Vienna. Spend some time in Mozart’s Salzburg until you reach Hungary’s capital Budapest. Climb the hill to the Buda side of the river and see the main part of the city, Pest, on the other bank. Sail into Romania through the Iron Gates Dam to the capital Bucharest and onwards to the Danube delta on the Black Sea. The destination is a spectacular 2,100 square mile wildlife reserve with hundreds of species of birds and fish.

Danube