The Danube: explore Germany, Austria, Hungary and Slovakia
The Danube is Europe’s second longest river, after the Volga. It is in the Black Forest in Southern Germany that this European river takes its source, at the confluence of two smaller waterways, the Brigach and the Breg in Donauschingen. The largest cities it flows through in Germany are Ulm, Regensburg and Passau.
The 5 to 10-day Danube cruises let you discover Austria, which is one of the nine countries the Danube goes through. One of the major cities to see is Linz. The Austrian capital, Vienna, is a veritable open-air museum you cannot miss on a Danube cruise. Visit the Schoenbrunn Palace, former summer residence of the imperial family. Catch a glimpse of the high art of Viennese living with music and Viennese cafes. Backstage in the Konzerthaus concert hall is well worth a visit, followed by a steaming cup of Vienna Coffee and a delicious pastry. Go and see the Hofburg Palace, and try a waltzing lesson if you get the chance!
The next capital city the Danube flows through is Budapest in Hungary. Once two distinct cities, they united as recently as 1873. A bike tour of the city lets you see all the important sights on an easy-paced ride, cycling through the historical center of Hungarian culture and many other legendary sites. Take a trip to the Puszta, the Pannonian steppe grasslands. Also called the Great Plain, this vast prairie was the once the ‘Wild West’ of Hungary, and immense herds of livestock grazed here under the watchful eye of the cowboys.
The third great city to visit on a Danube cruise is Bratislava. The charm of the Slovakian capital lies in its old city, boasting splendid Baroque palaces, churches and pleasant squares.
Two major European Rivers in one cruise
If you are still undecided, why not go for a cruise from Amsterdam to Budapest!