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The Danube’s Christmas Markets River Cruise 2024

Experience the real essence of the festive season with a cruise that stops at Europe’s most iconic Christmas markets in Budapest, Bratislava, Melk and Vienna.

Soak up the atmosphere and stroll amongst stalls with pretty handmade gifts, toys, and unique crafts. Taste delicious seasonal fare, including fragrant mulled wine, roasted chestnuts, spicy gingerbread and traditional Lebkuchen.

4.5
Star Image
from 417 reviews
  • Cruise Line: Saga
  • Ship: Spirit of the Danube
  • Duration: 5 Nights
  • Departure: December 2024
£1,484pp
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The Danube’s Christmas Markets 2024 Cruise Itinerary

This 5-day festive cruise drops anchor at some of Europe’s most famous capital cities. Adorned in their winter finery, this is a chance to explore the culture and architecture of iconic locations with all the atmosphere and excitement of the Christmas season. Enjoy picturesque river views, award-winning international cuisine and luxurious accommodation.

Day 1

Budapest

Embark in Budapest.

Day 2

Budapest

Known as the ‘Queen of the Danube’, Budapest is a city in two parts, Buda and Pest, built on opposite sides of the Danube. United as one whole, the two halves are still very distinct, with Buda the older and more historic part featuring cobbled streets and medieval architecture. Pest is more commercial and is graced with elegant 19th-century buildings. Your cruise includes a transfer to Budapest’s oldest Christmas market, held in Vörösmarty Square, a location also popular with Hungarian musicians. Enjoy browsing around the different stalls with traditional music and warm Hungarian hospitality.

Day 3

Bratislava

Stroll through Slovakia’s capital, with streets adorned with twinkling lights and Christmas trees. Explore the Main Square and Hviezdoslav Square, the location of Bratislava’s Christmas market with rows of tempting stalls selling all types of gifts. Treat yourself to some hot mulled wine or a mug of mead and enjoy the festivities.

Day 4

Melk

This historic Austrian town is famous for its Abbey, which is located above the town and has been widely regarded as Austria’s cultural and spiritual centre for over one thousand years. Enjoy a tour of this iconic baroque building and then visit Melk’s traditional Christmas market.

Day 5

Vienna

Sip Viennese coffee as you browse one of the most beautiful Christmas markets in Europe in one of the most famous capitals in the world. The day starts with a guided tour around some of Vienna’s most famous landmarks, including the Opera House and the Ringstrasse, following which guests are free to visit the Krippenmarkt, December market. Choose festive gifts from stalls selling silver jewellery, ceramics, handmade gifts and objets d’art.

Day 6

Vienna

Disembarkation.

Day 1

Vienna

Embark in Vienna.

Day 2

Vienna

Sip Viennese coffee as you browse one of the most beautiful Christmas markets in Europe in one of the most famous capitals in the world. The day starts with a guided tour around some of Vienna’s most famous landmarks, including the Opera House and the Ringstrasse, following which guests are free to visit the Krippenmarkt, December market. Choose festive gifts from stalls selling silver jewellery, ceramics, handmade gifts and objets d’art.

Day 3

Melk

This historic Austrian town is famous for its Abbey, which is located above the town and has been widely regarded as Austria’s cultural and spiritual centre for over one thousand years. Enjoy a tour of this iconic baroque building and then visit Melk’s traditional Christmas market.

Day 4

Bratislava

Stroll through Slovakia’s capital, with streets adorned with twinkling lights and Christmas trees. Explore the Main Square and Hviezdoslav Square, the location of Bratislava’s Christmas market with rows of tempting stalls selling all types of gifts. Treat yourself to some hot mulled wine or a mug of mead and enjoy the festivities.

Day 5

Budapest

Known as the ‘Queen of the Danube’, Budapest is a city in two parts, Buda and Pest, built on opposite sides of the Danube. United as one whole, the two halves are still very distinct, with Buda the older and more historic part featuring cobbled streets and medieval architecture. Pest is more commercial and is graced with elegant 19th-century buildings. Your cruise includes a transfer to Budapest’s oldest Christmas market, held in Vörösmarty Square, a location also popular with Hungarian musicians. Enjoy browsing around the different stalls with traditional music and warm Hungarian hospitality.

Day 6

Budapest

Disembark in Budapest.

The Danube’s Christmas Markets Cruise Ships

Spirit Of The Danube

As our second purpose-built river cruise ship, this vessel promises comfort and elegance during your stay on board. With the addition of the latest engine technology, this ship is also one of the greenest cruising the rivers.

182 Guests Maximum
Panoramic Views
Splash Pool

Trustpilot Reviews

Danube Christmas Markets Deals

Experience the Christmas Markets on the Danube with Crui.se

5 Nights
December 2024

The Danube Christmas Markets River Cruise 2024

  • Bratislava
  • Budapest
  • Melk
  • Vienna
£1,484pp Est. Price per person
  • Spirit of the Danube  

The Danube Christmas Markets 2024 Cruise Review

“This is Christmas shopping and then some! I’ve always traditionally hated Christmas shopping but doing it European style with a luxury floating hotel taking you from one destination to another is something I could so easily get used to. It’s a great trip for family or friends, there’s a chance to buy some unusual gifts, and it really gets you into the festive spirit!”

Ben Harper, Leeds

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The Danube Christmas Markets River Cruise 2024 FAQ

Find answers to some of the most common questions about river cruising here.

I’m on a special diet. Can the on-board restaurants tailor the menus to suit my requirements?

All meals on board are prepared using fresh local produce and chosen to make the most of regional and seasonal fare in the areas we sail through. Our daily menus always include vegetarian and vegan options, so it’s easy for our gourmet chefs to prepare other dishes to accommodate special diets and allergies. Just let the reservation team know your restrictions when you book.

What’s the weather like in December in these destinations?

The weather will be colder than in the UK but make the most of the white stuff for some really stunning photos. Our expert reservation team can discuss the usual temperatures for each port stop so you know what to pack. The Spirit of the Danube is always warm and welcoming after a long day’s sightseeing.

Do I need to apply for a visa to travel?

The Danube Christmas Market River Cruise 2024 travels through three European countries, so passengers will need visas and must arrange these themselves before travelling. Our friendly booking team can chat through some of the requirements with you, just remember to allow enough time in case of delays and don’t leave your visa applications until the last minute.

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