Embark on a festive Danube River cruise, staying in hand-picked boutique hotels in the heart of Vienna and Munich, and visiting Christkindlesmarkts, historic Melk Abbey and the Imperial Treasury in Vienna.
DAY 1. ARRIVE VIENNA, AUSTRIA
Arrive in Vienna, where you are met and transferred to your hotel. Tonight, join your dedicated Resident Tour Director for a welcome dinner.
DAY 2. VIENNA | HANDCRAFTED PORCELAIN
Travelling by small group, visit the Belvedere, seeing the stately palace complex, tranquil gardens and a Christmas market. View works by Austrian painter Gustav Klimt. Then, enjoy lunch at famous Café Central before a privately guided tour of the Augarten Porcelain Factory. Transfer to your vessel, with priority embarkation. After settling into your premium cabin or suite with an open-air French or walk-out balcony, enjoy a welcome cocktail, dinner and a festive holiday concert.
DAY 3. VIENNA | A CITY’S CHRISTMAS BEST
Tour Vienna by small group, driving along the Ringstrasse; visiting St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Imperial Treasury at Hofburg Palace; and taking a Viennese waltz lesson — experiences exclusive to Connections guests. After lunch, visit Schönbrunn Palace and its Christmas markets. Tonight, visit the main Christmas market at the Rathausplatz.
DAY 4. MELK | PALATIAL ABBEY
Arrive in Melk, where you visit the Benedictine abbey, perched on a rocky outcrop overlooking the Danube. Originally constructed as a palace, the abbey boasts soaring gilded towers, an elaborately frescoed church and a vast library of medieval manuscripts. Pause for lunch ashore at a local restaurant in the scenic Wachau Valley. Later, enjoy a private pre-dinner cocktail party in the Amadeus Club, hosted by your Resident Tour Director, followed by an exclusive Chef's Highlights dinner.
DAY 5. PASSAU, GERMANY | HISTORIC CHRISTKINDLESMARKT
Arrive in Passau. Take a guided city walk by small group, visiting the Christkindlesmarkt and St. Stephen's Cathedral to hear its organ. Linger over an authentic Bavarian meal and glass of wine at a charming restaurant, only for Connections guests. Then, explore the old historic center at leisure.
DAY 6. REGENSBURG | WALKING TOUR & MARKET VISIT
On today's Connections-exclusive excursions, walk through Regensburg and visit one of its oldest breweries for a tasting. Tour St. Emmeram's Palace and stroll its Christmas market. Join the captain for a gala dinner back on board.
DAY 7. NUREMBERG | HEART OF THE OLD CITY
Transfer to Nuremberg and see its 900-year-old ramparts, Imperial Castle and Palace of Justice. Privately visit a World War II art bunker with Connections guests. Explore the Christkindlesmarkt in the old city, with time to shop or savor homemade gingerbread.
DAY 8. MUNICH | BAVARIAN CAPITAL
Disembark in Nuremberg. Drive with your group to Munich. Take a guided walking tour of its old town. Visit the Frauenkirche cathedral and Marienplatz.
DAY 9 DEPART MUNICH
Transfer to Munich airport to depart.