Forget trains, planes and airplanes—hop on board a river cruise ship and experience Europe at an altogether gentler pace. Relax as you sail past breathtaking scenery and fairy tale landscapes before your ship pulls right into the heart of your destination to sample some of Europe’s most amazing ancient wonders, museums, palaces and gastronomic delights…
Vienna… Bratislava… Budapest… Belgrade… A cruise down the mighty Danube is all about sublime cities, scenic villages, pretty palaces and magnificent medieval fortresses. Explore imperial palaces and seek out some of the most opulent coffee shops you’ll ever set eyes upon in Vienna; climb the 13th century Crown Tower and experience rowdy beer halls in Bratislava; wander around the medieval monuments of Castle Hill and take a dip in the healing waters of art nouveau bathhouses in Budapest; and gain insight into Belgrade’s spirit of endurance at the city’s famous fortress—which has been destroyed more than 40 times throughout its history—and its 205-meter-tall broadcasting tower—which was leveled by NATO bombs in 1999 and rebuilt in 2010.
Amsterdam… Arnhem… Cologne… Strasbourg… A cruise down the majestic Rhine is to travel through a fairy tale landscape that has inspired a whole host of poets, composers, artists and writers. Hop on a bicycle and go to the Van Gogh Museum to see the masters incredible Sunflowers in Amsterdam; witness the locations of the 1944 World War II battle in Arnhem; visit one of the world’s finest cathedrals and share a beer with the locals in the beer halls of the Cologne; and lose yourself in the winding alleyways in Strasbourg as you search for the perfect spot to sample unique Alsatian dishes, like coq au Riesling.
Porto… Regua… Vega de Terro… Salamanca… Cruising the Douro is to experience one of the most beautiful canyons in the world—a place of breathtaking terraced vineyards that can only be truly appreciated from the river. Wander through the medieval pastel-colored alleyways of Ribeira and dine in Portuguese-style tapas bars (petiscarias) in Porto; kayak on the river or learn all about how port wine is grown, fortified and aged in the beautiful town of Regua; experience the unique blend of Spanish and Portuguese culture in small Spanish port town of Vega de Terro; and see Salamanca’s amazing Plaza Mayor, which is considered by many to be the most beautiful square in the whole of Spain.
Lyon… Mâcon… Avignon… Arles… Cruising down the Rhône is to sail past vineyards, orchards and endless fields of lavender and to sip on some of the finest wines in the world. Visit the stunning Place des Terreaux with its 19th century fountain sculpted by Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi (of Statue of Liberty fame) and dine on authentic Lyonnais specialities in the friendly bouchon restaurants of Lyon; pull up a chair in Mâcon’s pretty old town and sip a glass of local burgundy; sail into the heart of Provence in Avignon and visit the Palais de Papes—the largest Gothic palace ever built; and be inspired by the lovely sun-kissed city of Arles, just as Van Gogh was. The artist painted more than 200 of his masterpieces here.
Do you dream of cycling around Amsterdam? Of slipping into healing baths in Budapest? Of sampling authentic Alsatian cuisine in Strasbourg? Yes? Then come with on a river cruise in Europe. Not only will you have the experience of a lifetime, but you will have a sophisticated itinerary that has been lovingly-created by Indus’ Europe experts. To find out more about our river cruises in Europe, please feel free to contact us at any time.
About the Writer: Vickie Sam Paget
Vickie is a freelance writer and editor based in Vancouver, BC. When she’s not creating dynamic travel or tech content, globetrotting or gazing at the North Shore Mountains, you can usually find her curled up with a good book or sipping a pint of the good stuff in her local Irish bar.