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24 Day Croatia, Bosnia, Italy & Hungary with Danube River Cruise

24 days with Gate 1  Rating: Deluxe

River Cruise Itinerary
DAY 1, Friday - Depart for Croatia
Depart for Croatia.

DAY 2, Saturday - Arrive in Zagreb

Welcome to Zagreb, a medieval European city with a wealth of historic monuments. Tonight, a Welcome Dinner with your fellow travelers and briefing by your Tour Manager on the fascinating journey that lies ahead. (Dinner)

DAY 3, Sunday - Zagreb's Upper and Lower City Tour

Begin the day in busy Kaptol Square in Upper Town, dominated by the monumental Zagreb Cathedral, with its soaring twin spires. Then, head into Zagreb's medieval Upper Town with its cobblestone streets and red tile roofed buildings. Walk along Kravi Most, to St. Mark's Church with its brightly colored roof and the 17th century Jesuit Church of St. Catherine. After a stop at the Parliament building, free time to explore the winding streets of the Old Town and Ban Jelacic, the main square. Or take a leisurely stroll along Ilica Street, packed with restaurants, trendy cafes and a vibrant shopping scene. The optional evening tour to Kumrovec starts with a scenic drive to Kumrovec, birthplace of the late Marshal Tito. Visit the Ethnological Museum's restored village houses from the turn of the 19th century. Later, follow a winding road through the Zagorje Hills to a charming farm restaurant for a dinner of local specialties and wine, plus stunning views of Veliki Tabor Castle. (Breakfast)

Optional: Kumrovec & Dinner


DAY 4, Monday - Travel to Sarajevo
Today, travel from Zagreb to Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina. (
Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 5, Tuesday - Picturesque Sarajevo, Arrive in Dubrovnik
Morning tour of Sarajevo, a beautiful city with a complex history. Arrive at the picturesque Turkish Bazaar (Bascarsija), an ancient trading place with artisan workshops. View many examples of splendid Ottoman architecture around the city center. The city is truly a "living history museum", with Mosques built by the Ottomans sit alongside buildings created by the Austro-Hungarians. On to the Gazi Husrev-bey Mosque, the most important Islamic structure in the country, one of the world's finest examples of Ottoman architecture. Drive past the now neglected stadium from the 1984 Olympic Games and the Gavrilo Princip Museum, dedicated to Archduke Ferdinand. On your walk, look for the poignant Sarajevo Roses, flower-shaped memorials in the pavement filled with red cement which are one of the few reminders left of the war. En route to Mostar, a medieval town in northern Herzegovina, enjoy panoramic vistas. Here, view the compelling reconstructed Stari Most Bridge, a staunch symbol of freedom on the Neretva River. End the day in the spectacular walled city of Dubrovnik, lovingly named the "Pearl of the Adriatic." Tonight, enjoy dinner at the hotel. (
Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 6, Wednesday - Discover Dubrovnik on a Walking Tour
Enjoy the many delights of Dubrovnik today. The splendid medieval ramparts are the most grandiose fortification monuments in Europe. The magnificent Old Town was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a treasure of Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque churches, monasteries and palaces. The walking tour of Old Dubrovnik highlights sites such as the Rector's Palace, an outstanding blend of Gothic and Renaissance architecture and the monumental Sponza Palace, one of the most beautiful palaces in the city, preserved in its original form. Under the City Bell Tower on Luza Square view Orlando's Tower, dedicated to the legendary Knight that saved the city in the 9th century. On to the Dominican Monastery and also to the Franciscan Monastery, with exhibits from the world's third oldest functioning pharmacy. The rest of the day is yours. Perhaps spend time strolling along the impressive ramparts overlooking the shimmering Adriatic Sea, or visit the Maritime Museum in St. John's Castle. Don't miss tonight's optional boat ride around the Old City walls to St. Jakov Beach and enjoy a traditional Croatian dinner and Dalmatian wine, along with spectacular views of the night-lit city. (Breakfast)

Optional: Cruise & Dinner


DAY 7, Thursday - Excursion to Montenegro
Today's excursion takes you on a scenic drive across the Croatian border to Montenegro, a Mediterranean jewel with its crystal clear lakes. Head to the beautiful Bay of Kotor, the longest and deepest fjord in Southern Europe. Enjoy a boat ride that takes you to Our Lady Of The Rocks Church, nestled on an islet off the coast of Perast. View the Roman Catholic Church, the largest building on the islet, with a museum attached to it. Afterwards stop in Perast, a charming old coastal town. Visit the dramatically beautiful town of Kotor, butted up against the steep limestone cliffs of Mt Lovcen, with its imposing network of fortifications. Afterwards, return to Dubrovnik. Tonight, be sure to enjoy the spectacular sunset as you walk along Dubrovnik's cobbled streets and see the glowing buildings and the fortifications accented against the night sky. (
Breakfast)

DAY 8. Friday - Split City Tour
Depart Dubrovnik and travel north along the dramatic Adriatic coast to the UNESCO protected seaside town of Split, the second largest city in Croatia. Upon arrival, a walking tour along the cobbled streets of the Old Town features the historic inner city with its dominating Roman influence, built around the 4th century Palace of Diocletian. This spectacular palace, a precious example of Roman architecture, is one of the largest and best preserved in the world. See the remains of the Cathedral of St. Domnius built in the Middle Ages, and the Temple of Jupiter with its headless black sphinx guarding the entrance. Spend the remainder of the day discovering the town independently, or taking a leisurely stroll along the scenic waterfront promenade. In the evening, dinner together. (
Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 9, Saturday - Trogir, Plitvice Lakes
Travel north to historic Trogir, founded by the Greeks in 400 BC. Here, admire the three-naved 13th century Venetian Cathedral of St. Lovro, one of the finest architectural works in Croatia, and the stunning Cipiko Palace. A center of artistic activities, scholars came from around the world to Trogir to study and paint. Continue inland towards Plitvice Lakes National Park, a wonderland of 16 interconnecting lakes, flanked by thundering waterfalls and a huge primeval forest. This area, known as a geological and hydrological phenomenon, is celebrated as one of the most beautiful natural sights in Europe. (
Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 10, Sunday - Walking Tour in Plitvice National Park
Explore Plitvice National Park today and discover first-hand the breathtaking surroundings of this natural wonder, named a UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to more than 18 lakes and magnificent waterfalls at every turn. As you walk along the zig-zag paths, look for the park's fabled wildlife and more than 160 different species of birds. Keep your camera ready! A guided walk takes you past lush vegetation and along man-made boardwalks to several of the pristine lower lakes. Remainder of the day is at leisure. Share today's adventure with your fellow travelers at dinner. (
Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 11, Monday - Seaside Opatija, Postonja Caves, Bled in Slovenia
Today, return to the coast and travel along the striking Bay of Kvarner to the remarkable seaside resort of Opatija, a gem of Croatia's Adriatic coast, with its rich history and picturesque surroundings. Enjoy an orientation tour of Opatija exploring the highlights of this former Imperial resort city. Time to enjoy the pleasures of this area before journeying north to the Postojna Caves in Slovenia, a network of passages, galleries and chambers. This is the largest and the most visited show cave in Europe. Travel aboard the specially designed cave train with electric lighting that allows you to observe the splendor of the underground world, where the geological past is recorded in a unique manner. You'll be dazzled by the stalactites and stalagmites in a variety of shapes and colors. Afterwards continue to Bled, exquisitely set amidst the Julian Alps, for dinner and overnight. (
Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 12, Tuesday - The Alpine Resort of Bled, Ljubljana Excursion
Morning exploration of Bled, with its rich natural beauty ranks among the world's most beautiful alpine resorts, renowned for its mild healing climate and thermal lake waters. With its emerald-green lake, picture postcard church, and medieval castle. Tour the imposing 11th century Bled Castle, perched on a steep cliff high above the lake, creating a dramatic backdrop to the city. This medieval fortress, with its huge towers, ramparts, moats and terrace, offers exquisite views. This afternoon, enjoy an excursion to Ljubljana, Slovenia's capital. View the most significant sights of the old city center, with its unique mixture of Baroque and Art Nouveau architecture. Stop at the picturesque open-air market, Three Bridges Square, the Town Hall, and Robba Fountain, one of the city's best known Baroque monuments. Time to explore on your own before returning to Bled. (
Breakfast)

DAY 13, Wednesday - Trieste's Miramare Castle, Magical Venice
Depart Slovenia towards Italy, stopping en route in Trieste, a major seaport in northeastern Italy. Visit Miramare Castle on the peak of a rocky promontory along the Gulf of Trieste. Continue to magical Venice with time to begin your exploration of this astonishing city on your own. Later, join the optional Grand Canal Cruise that takes you through the heart of the city on a one-hour boat ride. Tonight, pamper yourself at one of the city's fine restaurants, or just sit at an outdoor café and sip a cappuccino or a lovely glass of Italian wine. (Breakfast)

Optional: Canal Grand Cruise


DAY 14, Thursday - Walking Tour of Venice
Walking tour of fairy tale Venice begins at St. Mark's Square. View the Golden Basilica of San Marco, built over several centuries in a fusion of Byzantine, Roman and Venetian architecture. Walk via the Bridge of Sighs, created at the beginning of the 17th century to serve as a link between prisons. Then on to the pink marble Doge's Palace, the official residence of the Venetian ruler. Its facade is highlighted by a massive late-Gothic gate, known as the Porta della Carta. Continue with a boat ride to the island of Murano, known for its artistic glassware. Here, visit a glassblowing workshop and observe a master artisan demonstrate this traditional Venetian art. The rest of the day is yours to explore Venice independently. Later, don't miss the optional Gondola ride with music, definitely one of the highlights of any Italian holiday! This evening, enjoy a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Optional: Gondola Serenade


DAY 15, Friday - Depart Italy, Fly to Hungary
Bid farewell to your tour manager in Italy and transfer to the Venice airport for your flight to Hungary. Arrive in Budapest and transfer to your hotel. This evening, enjoy a Welcome Drink and briefing with your new Tour Manager at the hotel. (
Breakfast)

DAY 16, Saturday - Budapest City Tour
Your morning tour begins on the Pest side of the river; view the Parliament, City Park and Heroes Square. Cross to Buda to see the Royal Palace, Matthias Church and the graceful medieval architecture along the cobbled streets. Explore the city's wonderful shops and cafes this afternoon on your own. Tonight, an optional dinner and show in Budapest. Travel to the outskirts of Budapest for a traditional Hungarian Dinner in a scenic forested location. While dining, you'll be entertained by colorfully dressed dancers performing a variety of spirited folk dances accompanied by a group playing live gypsy music. (Breakfast)

Optional: Dinner & Show in Budapest (PM)


DAY 17, Sunday - Cruise Embarkation
Enjoy the morning at leisure, or participate in the optional tour that traces the rich Jewish heritage of Budapest. Begin with a visit to the Great Dohany Synagogue, which ranks among one of the major Jewish sights in Budapest. This Moorish-style building is Europe's largest synagogue and the second largest in the world. View the Jewish Museum, the magnificent Tree of Life and the inspiring Raoul Wallenberg Memorial. Finally, travel across town to explore the chilling Hungarian Holocaust Museum. This afternoon, transfer to the port to embark your cruise. Tonight, a gala Welcome Dinner sets the mood for your delightful river cruise. The ship will set sail at 10pm. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Optional: Budapest Jewish Interest Tour (AM)


DAY 18, Monday - Bratislava City Tour
This morning, enjoy the tranquil scenery as the boat sails along the scenic Danube. In the late afternoon, arrive in Bratislava, capital of Slovakia, a mix of modern and Baroque architecture. This capital city is among the youngest in Europe, yet retains a rich history dating back more than 2000 years. Walk along the cobblestone lanes of the historic town center; view St. Martin's Cathedral, coronation site of the Kings of Hungary, the 13th century Old Town Hall and the Franciscan church. Time to explore this colorful city on your own before returning to the ship for dinner. This evening, the ship will set sail just before midnight. (
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 19, Tuesday - Vienna City Tour
Your morning tour of romantic Vienna introduces you to this Imperial city with its legendary opulence and elegance. Drive along the famed Ringstrasse, Vienna's main boulevard lined with magnificent Baroque palaces, parks and monuments. View the lavish Hofburg Palace, and the impressive Vienna Opera House. Continue to majestic St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Parliament building. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure, or, join the optional tour to the magnificent Schonbrunn Palace, once summer residence of the Hapsburgs. Visit the gorgeous baroque apartments and stroll through the world-famous manicured gardens. Tonight, perhaps take the opportunity to attend an evening of Viennese culture in the "City of Music" at an optional concert performance of the classical masterpieces of Mozart and Strauss, two of Vienna's most famous citizens. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Optional: Schonbrunn Palace Tour (PM)
Optional: Classical Viennese Concert (PM)


DAY 20, Wednesday - Melk Abbey
This morning, arrive in the Bavarian village of Durnstein, one of the prettiest towns on the Danube. Free time to stroll this quintessential village in the heart of the Wachau wine district. Walk along medieval cobblestone streets revealing 16th century town houses and wine taverns. Continue cruising late this morning and relax on board as the boat cruises through the scenic Wachau Valley, with lovely storybook views of vineyards, castles, hilltop ruins and monasteries. Later, disembark in Melk for a guided tour of the historic Benedictine Abbey, considered one of the finest examples of Baroque architecture in Europe. View the Abbot's chambers, the Kaiser's walk and the lavish library. The ship will set sail as you dine on board this evening. (
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 21, Thursday - Full Day in Linz
Early this morning cruise into Linz. Founded by the Romans, Linz has cultivated a strong artistic tradition, especially in the field of music. Today is free to explore the city independently, taking in such sites as St. Mary's Cathedral and Linz Castle, or just relaxing at a café sampling the famous Linzer torte which was named after this quaint city. Alternatively, join the full day excursion to Cesky Krumlov in the Czech Republic. Travel through the picturesque landscape of Southern Bohemia to Cesky Krumlov, a fairy-tale town with its maze of narrow cobbled streets. Declared by UNESCO a World Heritage Site in 1992, Cesky Krumlov has earned an international reputation for its State Castle and Chateau, one of the largest in Central Europe, superbly furnished with priceless art, tapestries and richly decorated weapons. The guided walk through town is highlighted by Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance houses once mansions of noblemen families. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Optional: Full Day Tour of Cesky Krumlov


DAY 22, Friday - Full Day in Passau
Today presents a wonderful opportunity to join the optional full day tour to beautiful Salzburg, birthplace of Mozart and setting for the Sound of Music. The walking tour will include some of Salzburg's most historic sites including the Mirabell Palace, the Abbey, Salzburg Cathedral, and St. Peter's Cemetery. After lunch at a local restaurant, there will be time to discover Salzburg on your own before returning to the ship. If you choose to remain on board, the day is free to explore the 2500-year-old Passau. Well known for its pastel patrician houses, cafes, cobblestone lanes and riverfront promenade, Passau is a Bavarian town with a mix of Roman, Italian Baroque and Gothic architecture. In the early evening, all passengers will rejoin the ship and set sail for Regensburg. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Optional: Full Day Tour of Salzburg


DAY 23, Saturday - Regensburg City Tour
Arrive in Regensburg this morning, one of Germany's largest and best preserved medieval cities designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The guided walking tour highlights the city's stunning architecture as you view the Old Town Hall, the Dom St. Peter, and the Porta Praetoria, gateway to an ancient Roman fort built in 179 AD. Marvel at beautiful churches and one of the oldest stone bridges crossing the Danube. Return to the boat or spend the afternoon at leisure discovering the delights of Regensburg on your own. The ship will remain docked in port this evening as you enjoy your final night on board. (
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 24, Sunday - Depart Germany
Your vacation ends today after breakfast. (
Breakfast)
Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • View Zagreb’s monumental Cathedral with its soaring twin spires in bustling Kaptol Square
  • Tour Sarajevo, with its splendid architecture, a beautiful city with a complex history
  • Tour Old Dubrovnik, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Excursion to Montenegro, a Mediterranean jewel nestled on the rugged Adriatic coast
  • Walk the cobbled streets of the Split’s Old Town to the 4th century Palace of Diocletian
  • Visit Plitvice Lakes National Park, a natural wonderland flanked by thundering waterfalls
  • Travel along the striking Bay of Kvarner to the stunning seaside resort of Opatija
  • Visit the Postojna Caves in Slovenia, the largest and the most visited show cave in Europe
  • Tour Ljubljana, with its unique mixture of Baroque and Art Nouveau architecture
  • In Bled, visit the 11th century castle perched on a steep cliff high above the lake
  • Visit to Miramare Castle on the peak of a rocky promontory in the Gulf of Trieste
  • Walking tour of Venice includes the magnificent Golden Basilica of San Marco
  • During your Budapest City Tour, see the Parliament, Heroes Square, Royal Palace and Matthias Church
  • Tour romantic Vienna with its legendary opulence and elegance
  • In Melk, join a guided tour of the historic Benedictine Abbey
  • Marvel at the beautiful churches and ancient stone bridges in Regensburg
All This Included
  • 22 nights First Class & Deluxe accommodations
  • River port charges of $190 per person
  • Cruise & hotel porterage
  • 43 meals: 22 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 15 dinners
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Entrance fees per itinerary
  • Captain's Welcome Dinner and Farewell Dinner
  • Unlimited wine and beer with dinners
  • Locally inspired recipes
  • Early riser breakfast in addition to buffet breakfast
  • Complimentary bottled water replenished daily in your stateroom
  • Late night snack
  • Complimentary basic Wi-Fi access
  • Self-serve coffee and tea station
  • Lounge serving premium spirits
  • Daily entertainment including an on-board musician
  • Fitness center
  • Non-smoking ship interior
  • Cruise Director & Tour Managers throughout
  • Shore excursions conducted exclusively in English by licensed guides
Accommodations on this Tour
Zagreb: Hotel Westin
Sarajevo: Hotel Europe Sarajevo
Dubrovnik: Hotel Lapad
Split: Hotel Atrium
Plitvice Lakes: Hotel Jezero
Bled: Park Hotel
Venice: Bauer Palladio Hotel & Spa
Budapest: Hilton Budapest City
Cruising: Cabin onboard MS Monarch Empress
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • Land/Cruise only price does not include arrival/departure transfers.
  • Part of this itinerary is performed by a local tour company. Days 2-15 is not an exclusive tour and therefore you may be with passengers from other tour companies; signage may display the local tour company name, but will have your name; tour guides and vehicles may change throughout your tour, and your tour documents/vouchers may be requested to exchange for local bus/theater/hotel/flight/ferry tickets. Luggage tags or name badges are not provided. Days 15-24 is an exclusive Gate 1 tour.
  • Passengers returning from Munich on Day 24 should select flights that depart no earlier than 11:00 am. The Munich airport is approximately a 1.5 hour drive from the Regensburg port.
  • Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. The Monarch Empress is equipped with elevator access between the Empress and Countess decks, however passengers will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes while touring.
  • Know Before You Book - High & Low Water European river cruising has gained in popularity for very good reason. It's a relaxing and convenient way to experience Europe while enjoying the comfort of a deluxe ship. However, before making the decision to reserve your vacation, please be aware of potential conditions which may impact your cruise. While most of the time river cruises operate exactly as planned, weather conditions may result in high or low water levels which impact a ship's itinerary and, on occasion, render a ship unable to sail at all. On very rare occasions, other events such as heavy fog, a damaged lock, or an incapacitated vessel blocking the river, may impact a sailing. These events typically occur with little or no notice. In the event that a cruise is partially or completely impacted, the itinerary will be operated by deluxe motor coach, accompanied by a Tour Manager, with overnights in hotels. The itinerary will include as many of the originally scheduled sightseeing features as possible, considering the travel time and distances required, as well as meals. While it is not possible to recreate the more leisurely comforts of sailings, we will endeavor to provide a comparable itinerary. These alternative services will be provided at no additional charge.
  • This moderately active trip covers a fair amount of ground each day. The longest day spent on the bus is between Opatija and Split, but will include numerous spots for lunch and breaks. Expect from three to four hours walking every touring day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. There is a potential for a small number of sailings to be impacted by river water levels, or other factors which may impact safe navigation. This may cause part or all of the cruise itinerary to be operated by motor coach and may also involve hotel accommodations.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.



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