2019 : Christmastime from Basel to Prague (WMN) - Visionary

12 Day River Cruise Basel to Prague

On this Christmastime river cruise, you'll start in Switzerland, and cruise through the heart of Germany, with stops in France and the Czech Republic. Explore many unique Christmas markets, where you can shop for locally crafted gifts, smell the aroma of freshly baked gingerbread, and sample tasty holiday treats.

Embark your river cruise ship in Basel, Switzerland, and sail to Breisach, Germany. From here, enjoy a visit to Germany's Black Forest, known for contributing Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and cuckoo clocks to the world. In Strasbourg, France, visit the red-sandstone gothic cathedral with its ancient murals and fascinating astronomical clock. This time of year, the historic charm of the city is mixed with festive aromas, sights, and sounds-creating a truly magical atmosphere! In Heidelberg, Germany, visit the imposing ruins of Heidelberg Castle. You'll find an ice rink at the foot of the castle and the Christmas market covers five town squares with an array of seasonal crafts and delicacies. An excursion takes you to charming Rudesheim on the Rhine River, where you'll see Europe's largest nativity scene with life-size figures. In Wurzburg, walk through the halls of the ornate Bishop's Residenz-then stroll through the Christmas markets while you sip Gluhwein (hot mulled wine). Learn about holiday traditions as you sail to Bamberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you'll find nativity scenes built by local citizens throughout the town. On a guided tour of Nuremberg, marvel at the city's medieval fortifications and gothic churches, and of course visit the Christmas market, one of the oldest in Germany.

Your Christmastime river cruise vacation ends in beautiful Prague, Czech Republic, which you visit with a Local Guide. The Christmas market offers rows of brightly decorated wooden huts selling ornaments and Czech handicrafts-be sure to try a traditional hot sausage from one of the stalls.

Cruise at-a-Glance

Day 1 Basel (Embarkation): Onboard welcome reception
Day 2 Breisach: Excursion to Black Forest; Christmas market
Day 3 Strasbourg: Guided sightseeing, visit La Petite France district and the gothic cathedral; Christmas market
Day 4 Speyer. Excursion to Heidelberg: Guided tour of Heidelberg Castle, see the Great Vat; Christmas markets
Day 5 Wiesbaden. Excursion to Rudesheim: Visit Siegfried's Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum; enjoy a special treat
Day 6 Main river village: Guided walk, onboard baking demonstration
Day 7 Wurzburg: Guided sightseeing, visit the Bishop's Residenz; Christmas market
Day 8 Bamberg: Onboard Christmas Traditions lecture; guided sightseeing, see the Old Town Hall; Christmas market
Day 9 Nuremberg: Choice of guided sightseeing or Nuremberg Rally Grounds tour; Christmas market
Day 10 Nuremberg (Disembarkation)-Prague: Travel to Prague
Day 11 Prague: Guided sightseeing, see the Astronomical Clock and visit Hradcany Castle Grounds; Christmas market
Day 12 Prague: Your vacation ends this morning

Always Included

You've always forged your own path...with your own distinct perspective of looking at the world. Avalon Waterways presents a river cruise experience with your unique style in mind-offering expansive views and wider perspectives. That's why we've designed a cruise experience that's just a bit different.

Here are just some of the features and amenities you'll experience on board our Avalon ships. See the Ship Amenities Section below for more information about the amenities in our fleet's unique ships.

Throughout the Ship:

  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Panoramic windows
  • Elegant, contemporary design & decor
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew & Cruise Director
  • Sky Deck with whirlpool, shade awnings, game area and premium lounges
  • Covered Observation Lounge
  • Club Lounge with 24-hour self-serve beverage station with complimentary cappuccinos, lattes, tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, as well as treats throughout the day

    Suites & Staterooms:

  • Comfort Collection BedsSM with choice of mattress firmness
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products
  • Large bathroom featuring shower with glass door
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with free movie channels
  • Individual climate control and in-room safe
  • Complimentary bottled water daily
  • And, much more.

    Health & Fitness:

  • Bikes
  • Canoe, kayak and jogging excursions
  • Maps for hiking, biking and jogging routes
  • Fitness and wellness activities
  • Fitbits®
  • All through your Avalon Adventure HostSM

    Dining

  • FlexDiningSM for more venue and seating options, including flexible seating times in our main Dining Room
  • Avalon FreshSM healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with every lunch and dinner
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast options
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch or Sky Grill on the Sky Deck (weather permitting)
  • Daily Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, sweet treats & sandwiches
  • Daily four-course a la carte dinner in the main Dining Room with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrees and desserts. Includes selections of regional recipes, Western dishes and vegetarian options.
  • Alternative Panorama Bistro dinner, featuring regional specialties and small plates
  • Captain's welcome & farewell receptions and dinners with sparkling wine and canapes
  • Panorama Lounge featuring premium spirits and Avalon specialty cocktails, along with local entertainment special guests
  • Cocktails available on the Sky Deck
  • Fresh fruit available throughout the day

    AVALON CHOICE

    Avalon has designed included activities with a choice of experiences. We invite you to select the tours, activities, and events that interest you most, so you can experience your cruise your way. There are 3 types of included shore excursion on every Europe cruise: Classic Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You'll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites. Discovery We've found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore. Active Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

  • Plus independent exploration options and use of our exclusive AvalonGO APP.

    Day-By-Day Itinerary

    (B) = Breakfast (L) = Lunch (D) = Dinner

    Day 1

    (D)

    BASEL, SWITZERLAND (EMBARKATION) W

    elcome to Switzerland! Your Suite Ship® is Ready for Boarding.

    Flights into Zurich must arrive by 3 pm.

    Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm. Stroll through the city centre, enjoy the festive illumination and savor Christmas delicacies like waffles, gingerbread, sweets and Swiss raclette.

    EVENING CRUISE TO BREISACH

    Day 2

    (B, L, D)

    BREISACH, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO BLACK FOREST

    History, Artistry, and the Beautiful Black Forest Discovery Join a full-day Guided Tour to the magical Black Forest to experience local traditions and the vibrant Christmas mood.

    You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to visit the charming village of Colmar, with its half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings.

    Alternatively, spend your afternoon leisurely browsing Breisach's lovely Christmas market to sample bretzels, mulled wine, and Black Forest cake.

    OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO STRASBOURG

    Day 3

    (B, L, D)

    STRASBOURG, FRANCE

    A Gothic Cathedral, Heaven's Time, and Joyeux Noël Classic Come along for City Sightseeing, including the city's gothic, stained-glass cathedral with its celebrated ancient murals and astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France District.

    You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to beautiful Alsace, for an afternoon in a French wine-country village.

    Savor the warmth and glow of Christmas tradition by spending your free time this afternoon wandering the French winter markets of Strasbourg. Take in the lights, music, and the pleasures of the season.

    EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO SPEYER

    Day 4

    (B, L, D)

    SPEYER, GERMANY. HEIDELBERG EXCURSION

    Winter Wonders and a Wine Barrel Fit for a King Classic Take a half-day Guided Tour that includes the magnificent Heidelberg Castle and the Great Vat-the world's largest wine barrel. This afternoon, visit the local German Christmas Markets in Heidelberg, or Speyer. Explore at your own pace to soak up the sights and sounds, tantalizing treats, and seasonal handiwork of these sparkling winter wonderlands.

    EVENING/OVERNIGHT TO WIESBADEN

    Day 5

    (B, D)

    WIESBADEN. EXCURSION TO RUDESHEIM

    Eat, Drink, and Be Merry in Wine Country Discovery Tour the incredible Mechanical Music Museum for a one-of-a-kind instrumental experience in Rudesheim.

    EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO SPEYER

    Day 6

    (B, L, D)

    MAIN RIVER VILLAGE

    Hidden Gifts and Holiday Delights in Beautiful Bavaria Classic Take a Guided Tour of a picturesque village along the Main River. Discovery Join a Cookie-Baking Demonstration on board your ship while sailing.

    AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO WÜRZBURG

    Day 7

    (B, L, D)

    WÜRZBURG

    Ornaments, Old Saint Nicholas, and Nutcrackers Sweet Classic Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the "Pearl of the Romantic Road" with its Old Main Bridge, towering fortress, and baroque Bishop's Residence.

    You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to the beautiful Bavarian town of Rothenburg. Visit the Käthe Wohlfahrt German Christmas museum-the world's most extensive collection of traditional German Christmas decorations.

    Spend free time enjoying the festive, warm glow of Wurzburg's Christmas markets.

    EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BAMBERG

    Day 8

    (B, L, D)

    BAMBERG

    Cherished Christmas Customs and Cradle Scenes Discovery Enjoy an onboard Christmas Traditions Lecture while sailing. Classic Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Bamberg-medieval home of Germany's Roman Empire dynasties. Stroll through dozens of Bamberg's nativity scenes-from miniature to life-size.

    Take free time to enjoy the quaint Christmas markets, and warm up with traditional German dumplings, sausage, and a glass of hearty Bavarian ale.

    EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO NUREMBERG

    Day 9

    (B, L, D)

    NUREMBERG

    Living Heritage and History Lessons Classic Choose a Guided Tour of Nuremberg's medieval architecture, gilded fountain, Gothic cathedral, and Kaiserburg Castle, OR: Classic Join a Guided Tour of the historic Nuremberg Rally Grounds-used by the Third Reich.

    Spend free time browsing the spruce stalls of the Christmas Markets of Nuremberg. Sample favorite Bavarian fare-bratwurst, gingerbread, mulled blueberry wine, and countless other Christkindlmarkt culinary delights.

    OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NUREMBERG

    Day 10

    (B)

    NUREMBERG (DISEMBARKATION)

    Bid your crew farewell and head for the Golden City of Prague.

    You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to reveal the secrets of Prague as your expert local guide takes you to Charles Bridge and Mala Strana-two of Prague's most romantic and picturesque spots.

    Day 11

    (B)

    PRAGUE

    Gothic Cathedrals, Grand Castles, and Czech Christmas Spirits Classic Take a Guided City Walk to visit Hradcany Castle Grounds; see St. Vitus Cathedral, and Old Town's Astronomical Clock.

    Spend the afternoon on your own to browse the exquisite Christmas Markets of Prague. Stroll through the brightly colored wooden stalls for ornaments and handmade toys and handicrafts.

    In the evening, you might like to attend an Optional Folklore Dinner Show, sampling traditional Czech cuisine in an authentic Prague setting.

    Day 12

    (B)

    PRAGUE

    Your

    vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

    Notes

  • In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • Call (510) 247-0670 for more information or to book today! Mention code 13849706

    Cruise Line
    Avalon Waterways
    Offer
    Offer valid through 6/30/2018
    Duration
    12 Days
    Cruise Ship
    Visionary

    Click for more information on this ship.

    DayPortArriveDepart
    Day 1Basel  
    Day 2Breisach  
    Day 3Strasbourg  
    Day 4Speyer  
    Day 5Wiesbaden  
    Day 6Main River Village  
    Day 7Wurzburg  
    Day 8Bamberg  
    Day 9Nuremberg  
    Day 10Prague  
    Day 11Prague  
    Day 12Prague  
    Dates/Pricing

    Click Quote or call us to get additional information on your chosen travel date. Special offers or competitive pricing may be available!

    DatePrice / DescriptionQuote
    11/30/2019Quote
    Disclaimer

    Port charges:
    $234

    Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included.

    Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.

    Extra nights per person in Zurich:
    in single room from $185 to $349, in twin room from $120 to $208

    Extra nights per person in Prague:

    in single room $250, in twin room $148

    All prices per person based on double occupancy. Cruise price based on Category E in a deluxe outside stateroom on Indigo Deck. See below for upgrade pricing.

    To upgrade to a higher category, add per person:

    Category / Decks / Price
    D / Indigo Deck / $256
    B / Sapphire Deck / $1478
    A / Sapphire Deck / $1542
    P / Royal Deck / $1671
    Royal Suite / Royal Deck / $2828

    Prices shown are "starting at" prices and do not include airfare.

    Travel Terms & Conditions
    The purchase of any travel services offered by Avalon Waterways, constitutes a contractual arrangement between you (the Traveler) and Avalon Waterways, and represents your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions. Please ensure that you read carefully and understand the Terms & Conditions prior to booking. These Terms & Conditions cover Deposit & Final Payment information, Air-Inclusive Deposits & Final Payment, Revisions & Revision Fees, Air Arrangements, Participation, Travelers Who Need Special Assistance, Young Travelers, Smoking, Price Policy, Visas and Passports, Hotels & Accommodations, Baggage Allowance, Travel Documents, Not Included in the Land Price, Refunds, Service Inquires After the Vacation, Holidays, Safety, Photos & Pictures, Optional Excursions, and Responsibility.

    Important Notes

  • Vacation departures, itineraries and prices are subject to change.
  • A non-refundable, non-transferable deposit is required for Avalon Waterways to reserve space for you. View Terms & Conditions for limited exceptions.
  • The following charges are not included in the land/cruise vacation price unless otherwise noted: airfare to and from the start of your vacation; intra-vacation air, unless specified in the itinerary; airline baggage fees including checked and/or excess baggage fees; Federal inspection fees for the Federal U.S. Customs and Immigrations; International Air Transportation tax; agricultural tax; other per person taxes imposed by government entities; airport taxes and fees, including the September 11th Security fee up to $11.20 per person, passenger facility charges up to $18 per person, Federal domestic flight segment fees up to $4.10 per segment, and U.S. and international arrival and departure and other government-imposed added by the airline and applicable at time of booking; port taxes; passports; visas and vaccinations; tips to your Cruise Director, Local Host, driver, Local Guides, and/or ship's crew; gratuities on ferries, trains, and cruise ships; laundry; telephone; minibar; alcohol, beverages, and food outside of the contracted Avalon menu as presented at a hotel or restaurant or onboard your vessel (these extra items will be billed to you before leaving the hotel, ship, or restaurant); airport transfers on non-qualifying flights; optional excursions; additional activities and excursions purchased online; porterage at airports and train stations; Travel Protection; and all other items of a personal nature.
  • Additional airline-imposed fees for seat assignments may apply and are not included in your total package cost. Please refer to carrier websites for seat assignment policies and applicable pricing.

    Booking your Vacation with Air
    Our volume buying power saves you money. We may be able to provide you with flight arrangements from your gateway city. Avalon Waterways offers 2 air options: Flex Air and Instant Purchase Air. Early Airfare Price Guarantee locks in a price that is guaranteed not to increase. Air pricing and schedules are available approximately 330 days prior to last travel date in the itinerary. At that time the best air price will be utilized and a new invoice with the air cost and confirmed schedule will be sent. The identity of the carrier, which may include the carrier's codeshare partner, will be assigned and disclosed at this time. If the guaranteed price is the lowest, the schedule with the lowest fare per contracted classes of service will be booked. Any voluntary change to the confirmed flights negates the guaranteed price and is subject to air pricing at the time of the change.

    Guaranteed air-inclusive prices - air is only available to passengers traveling from the United States and only available when booked in conjunction with a land vacation. An additional non-refundable air deposit of $300 per person is required for Flex Air booked in conjunction with any land vacation (i.e. air-inclusive vacation). Air can only be booked by Avalon in conjunction with a vacation package. Instant Purchase Air requires air payment in full at time of booking (i.e. air-inclusive vacation) plus a non-refundable per person service fee of $30 (North/Central America), $50 (Europe/Middle East) or $80 (all other international destinations). Once booked, Instant Purchase Air is non-refundable, and non-changeable. Some vacations may only offer one Air type option. However, once your airfare is confirmed and Avalon has received your full air and land deposit, your air-inclusive vacation price is guaranteed.

    Air-Inclusive Vacations - Applicable Taxes & Fees
    Air-inclusive vacations include government-imposed taxes and fees applicable at the time of booking and will be shown as a Total Amount. Additional airline fees for baggage may apply. At the time of booking your air-inclusive vacation online, carrier Websites will be provided to check baggage fees, or you can visit www.iflybags.com for up-to-date baggage pricing/restrictions. For return travel from some countries, international travelers are required to pay entry and/or exit fees at the airport. These fees will be collected by the local government and are payable by the traveler at time of travel. Your confirmation booking information will contain information about these fees.

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