Christmas Markets Along the Danube River

Christmas Markets Along the Danube River



Celebrate the enduring magic of the Yuletide season on an enchanting river cruise to enjoy Europe’s most beloved Christmas markets. Discover magnificent settings where cobblestoned streets strung with colorful lights meet festive market stalls of handcrafted ornaments, fine wooden toys, and irresistible holiday treats. This unique itinerary brings the old-world charm of the holidays to life in a vivid celebration of history and culture. Be inspired by some of Europe’s most noteworthy landmarks—Mozart’s birthplace in Salzburg, the 900-year-old Abbey of Melk in the legendary Wachau Valley, and the glamorous imperial monuments of Hapsburg Vienna. Barbara Horlbeck is the study leader on the Nov. 29th tour.


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Trip Type
Group Travel Tour, International River Voyages
Departure Dates
Nov 29, 2024 - Dec 7, 2024
Dec 6, 2024 - Dec 14, 2024


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.


  • Barbara Horlbeck

    Barbara Horlbeck

    Barbara Horlbeck, M.A., is an arts and culture professional with extensive global experience. She is a lecturer, writer, independent researcher, and adjunct instructor of art history, and has developed and taught a wide range of university-level courses. Founder of Arts and Influences, Barbara also developed in-depth seminars, several topics of which include “Arts of the Islamic World”, “Arts of the Ancient World,” “Arts of China, India, and Japan”, “Renaissance and Baroque Art”, and “Collectors, Collections, and the Modern Museum”.  As a docent at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts for more than 20 years, Barbara led tours for educators, specialists, and the general public on the museum’s encyclopedic collections.  She has traveled in just 45 countries, including five continents and the North Pole.  Barbara adores helping our travelers develop a deeper understanding of the world’s rich artistic and cultural legacy, while, at the same time, she helps to place works of art and architecture in their broad historical context.


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. 6th departure operates in the reverse order

  • day 2

    Nuremberg, Germany/Embark AMADEUS QUEEN

    Arrive in the storied city of Nuremberg, to embark the Amadeus Queen. 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 for 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 12/06 departure operates in reverse

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