Christkindlmärkte along the Danube River

Christkindlmärkte along the Danube River



Experience Yuletide magic on an enchanting Danube River sojourn to visit some of Europe’s oldest and most iconic Christkindlmärkte. Cruise the Danube from Vienna to Nuremberg and be immersed in a festive tradition that dates to the Middle Ages. Attend Christmas markets in Vienna, Passau, Regensburg, Nuremberg and Salzburg. Visit the world-famous Spanish Riding School and tour Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna; attend an organ recital at Dürnstein’s 15th-century monastery; stroll through the baroque Benedictine abbey in Melk; see Passau’s beautiful baroque cathedral; and conclude in the walled city of Nuremberg.


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Trip Type
Group Travel Tour, International River Voyages
Departure Dates
Dec 1, 2025 - Dec 9, 2025
Dec 8, 2025 - Dec 16, 2025


Vienna Pre-Program Option and Munich Post-Program Option.


Airport transfers and luggage handling abroad are only included if air arrangements are booked through Gohagan & Company. If travelers make their own air arrangements, transfers and luggage handling are not included; transfers can be organized through Gohagan & Company and purchased by the traveler.


  • David J. Brown

    David J. Brown

    Few names over the past twenty-plus years have been as synonymous with the National Trust for Historic Preservation as David J. Brown. David served as EVP and the organization’s founding Chief Preservation Officer, where he led the Trust’s advocacy, educational, field work, research, and historic sites programs. A national leader, speaker, and author with a four-decade record of achievement in saving historic places and supporting thriving communities, David is the founder of Bearden Brown LLC, which works to build nonprofit leadership and grow organizational impact. An affiliate fellow at the American Academy in Rome and a founding board member of the International National Trusts Organisation, David brings an international perspective to his discussions of preservation, history, and architecture.


A non-refundable administrative fee of $300 per person will apply for
all cancellations received more than 7 days after booking and before other fees take effect at 120 days:
120 days $300 per person admin fee after 7-day grace period from booking
120 – 91 days 25% of full invoice fare
90 – 61 days 50% of full invoice fare
60 – 31 days 75% of full invoice fare
30 – 0 days 100% of full invoice fare
Separate airfare Terms & Conditions apply


Christmas map


  • day 1

    Depart home city

    Dec. 1st departure operates in the reverse order. David Brown is the Study Leader on the Dec. 1 Departure.

  • day 2

    Nuremberg, Germany/Embark Viva Enjoy

    Arrive in the storied city of Nuremberg, to embark the Viva Enjoy. Attend the Captain’s Welcome Reception and Dinner this evening.

  • day 3


    Explore the historic center of Nuremberg, Bavaria’s second largest city. Divided by the River Pegnitz, its medieval city walls and imperial castle complex are straight out of a fairytale. Behold the medieval, Gothic‑style St. Lawrence Church, damaged during the World War II and later masterfully restored. In the Hauptmarkt, see the Frauenkirche, or Gothic church, and the Schöner Brunnen fountain. Spend the afternoon at leisure and visit Germany’s most famous Christmas Market, known for preserving Nuremberg’s famous rostbratwurst and Nürnberger lebkuchen gingerbread.

  • day 4


    This morning, enjoy a walking tour of medieval Regensburg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an architectural testament to the city’s history as an important trading center. Even though it suffered repeated bombing during World War II, most of its medieval structures survived. Festooned with pine boughs and sparkling lights, the city features four enchanting Christmas Markets—each purveying distinctive handmade pottery, carved figures, and Bavarian delicacies.

  • day 5


    Admire graceful arcades, cobblestone streets, and the breathtaking Baroque cathedral of St. Stephen. Visit the Christmas Market in front of that iconic cathedral with time to explore at your own pace. Shop the stalls and taste the gingerbread and other aromatic treats with the splendor of the city all around you.

  • day 6

    Linz/Salzburg, Austria

    Begin your discovery of historic Salzburg with a walking tour of its UNESCO-inscribed old town. See St. Peter’s Cemetery, The Residenz Palace, the Festival Halls, and stroll along the 12th century Getreidegasse shopping boulevard. You will also walk past Mozart’s birthplace at Getreidegasse No. 9 before continuing on to the 11th century Fortress of Hohensalzburg, the largest, fully preserved fortress in central Europe. See the majestic Dom Cathedral, home to Mozart’s baptismal font, as you walk to Salzburg’s Christmas Market in Cathedral Square. Enjoy lunch in local restaurant, followed by a visit to the famous Schloss Hellbrunn Christmas market, known for its life-size Nativity scene.

  • day 7


    Visit Melk’s famous Benedictine abbey, one of the most significant Baroque‑style building complexes in Europe. Providing a sweeping panorama of the Lower Alps and Danube River below, the abbey’s elaborate cloister was ruined and then rebuilt several times and contains such artistic treasures as original frescoes, statuary, and medieval manuscripts. From there, we cruise to the lovely village of Dürnstein, situated in the heart of Wachau Valley wine country. Visit the uniquely situated Dürnstein Abbey, which began in 1372 as a small chapel dedicated to the Virgin Mary. High above the town, see the ruins of Künringer Castle, where England’s King Richard the Lionheart was imprisoned on his way back from the Third Crusade. Enjoy a short organ recital at the cathedral in Dürnstein.

  • day 8


    Discover the Gothic beauty of St. Stephen’s, or Stephansdom, on a visit to a structure that represents eight centuries of architectural history. Explore the UNESCO‑inscribed Schönbrunn Palace, the Hapsburg’s extravagant summer residence. Learn more about these rulers as you stroll palace hallways and the gardens, followed by a visit to the Schönbrunn Christmas Market. Enjoy the Captain’s Farewell Reception.

  • day 9

    Vienna/Disembark ship/Return to home city

    Disembark the river boat and transfer to the airport for a flight back to your home city. *The 12/01 departure operates in reverse

Everything you need to know about the tour

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