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How To Choose The Best Europe River Cruise, Just Right For You

Use our Guide to discover more about European River Cruises, then choose the waterway just right for you.

Best Europe River Cruises
European River Cruises let you Immerse yourself in the Old World as you sail Europe's most iconic rivers. Discover Danube gems like Vienna and Budapest. See storied Rhine castles. Trace French history along the Seine. From the Main to the Moselle, the Douro to the Dordogne, the river cruise experience is unsurpassed. River Cruises take you to the heart of Europe via its grand waterways, providing you with boundless insight into the continent's cultural and historic treasures. Immerse yourself in the storybook villages, vibrant cultural centers and picturesque landscapes of The Netherlands, Austria, Germany, France, Hungary and Switzerland, and unlock a whole new world of discovery. Here is a sample of what you will see on European river cruises:

Visits to Germany's charming wine-producing villages

Culinary delights in Lyon, France
Medieval Prague, "City of a Thousand Spires"
The elegant boulevards and grand monuments of Paris
Historic Wittenberg, home to Martin Luther
Fairytale windmills of The Netherlands
Wine tastings in the quintas of Portugal's Douro Valley
Budapest's regal Parliament building and Chain Bridge
Vienna's inspirational legacy of classical music
France's famed wineries in Beaujolais, Bordeaux and beyond

In the News:  Viking, voted to Travel + Leisure's "World's Best Awards" list and Conde Nast Traveler's Readers Choice Awards.

Conde Nast Traveler
READERS' CHOICE AWARDS - 16 YEARS OF RECOGNITION
In 2021, Viking was named both the #1 River Cruise Line and the #1 Ocean Cruise Line in Conde Nast Traveler's annual Readers' Choice Awards. This is the first time Viking has scored higher than all other cruise lines in both of these categories in the same year.
Viking is honored to have scored in the top of the list every year since the river category was introduced, including also being voted the #1 River Cruise Line in 2020, 2018 and 2017.

Travel + Leisure
WORLD'S BEST AWARDS - 17 YEARS OF RECOGNITION
Viking River Cruises has been recognized as the World's Best by Travel + Leisure readers in the 2021 World's Best Awards and has been recognized 17 times since 2004.
In 2015, Viking earned the highest score of all river and ocean cruise lines in the magazine's annual World's Best List. Viking was also named the #1 River Cruise Line on Travel + Leisure's 2012 and 2015 World's Best Lists..

Browse the list below and you'll find the best European river cruise for you.

Best Europe River Cruises

2 Savvy Travelers highlight the best Europe River Cruises for 2022 - 2023

Best Danube River Cruises
Winding through ten countries past old-world cultures, emerald-green hills and vibrant cities, the Danube has witnessed epic histories that have shaped all of Europe. Cruising through Germany, Austria, Hungary and seven other countries all the way to the Black Sea, the Danube is the soul of Central Europe. Join us along these culture-rich banks, whose scenic vineyards, ancient monasteries and elegant cities have inspired travelers for centuries.


Find The Danube River Cruise Just Right For Me

Best Danube River Cruise Offers for 2022 -2023

Danube Waltz
Passau to Budapest
8 DAYS 6 TOURS 4 COUNTRIES
FROM $1,999*

Cruise to enchanting destinations
Soak up soothing steam at a Budapest thermal bath. Learn to waltz at a Viennese dance school. Savor Austro-Hungarian cuisine in Vienna and Budapest. Admire the Wachau Valley's beauty. Explore lesser-known Central European cities like Bratislava and Passau. Witness daily life in an abbey on an exclusive visit to Gottweig. This 8-day itinerary reveals the best of these places, while cruising leisurely through spectacular scenery.


Romantic Danube
Budapest to Regensburg
8 DAYS 5 TOURS 3 COUNTRIES
FROM $1,999*

Sail to charming cities & villages
Visit Budapest's Castle District and cross the famous Chain Bridge. Explore Gottweig Abbey, one of Austria's most revered monastic centers, and make dumplings with Wachau Valley apricots. Visit historic Salzburg. Spend two days in Vienna, and celebrate the city's musical heritage at a concert featuring works by Mozart and Strauss. With medieval towns, grand cities and stunning scenery, this 8-day journey on the "Blue Danube" is one you are sure to love.

Find more river cruises on the Danube

Best Rhine River Cruises
Noted for dramatic folklore, a renowned wine growing region and UNESCO World Heritage sites dotting its banks, Rhine River Cruises flow through six European nations. Once thought by Ancient Romans to be the outermost border of civilization, the Rhine is now home to working windmills, medieval towns, storybook forests and a river cruise that's just right for you.

Find The Rhine River Cruise Just Right For Me

Best Rhine River Cruise Offers for 2022 -2023

Rhine Getaway
Amsterdam to Basel
8 DAYS 6 TOURS 4 COUNTRIES
FROM $1,999

Castles & cathedrals
Explore one of Europe's best-loved rivers, the Rhine. Discover the turreted fortresses, grand cathedrals, historic cities, medieval towns and spectacular scenery of the Middle Rhine-a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Taste the region's renowned white wines, the roots of its terraced vineyards reaching back to Roman times. Savor the various culinary traditions of Alsace. From Amsterdam and Cologne to Basel, this journey reveals a rich landscape of beauty and culture.

Grand European Tour
Amsterdam to Budapest
15 DAYS 12 TOURS 4 COUNTRIES
FROM $3,899

Travel through the heart of Europe
Admire Rhine Valley vistas from a 900-year-old castle. Sample the food and wine of Austria's Wachau Valley. Learn the Viennese waltz and linger in Budapest's Cafe Gerbeaud. Indulge all your senses on this 15-day journey spanning the best of Europe. Our most iconic itinerary traces the Rhine, Main and Danube Rivers between the windmill-dotted waterways of Holland and the stunning landscapes of Hungary, with engaging encounters at every bend.


Find more river cruises on the Rhine

Best Seine River Cruises
The glorious Seine winds through elegant Paris into historic Normandy, passing bucolic villages and scenic landscapes and farm lands that inspired famed Impressionist artists. The Seine meanders on a serpentine path through the Norman countryside, an historic region of great pastoral beauty. Drift along dreamy apple orchards and medieval ruins. Explore elegant Paris. See Monet's Giverny home. And honor World War II heroes on Normandy beaches.


Find The Seine River Cruise Just Right For Me

Best Seine River Cruise Offers for 2022 -2023

Paris & the Heart of Normandy
Paris to Paris
8 DAYS 6 TOURS 1 COUNTRY
FROM $1,999

Enjoy Paris & Norman treasures
Dock in the heart of Paris, admiring views of the iconic Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty's smaller French twin from your ship. Experience history firsthand at the Normandy beaches and delight in Rouen's Gothic architecture. Explore Giverny and Claude Monet's charming house and gardens, the setting inspiring many of his renowned masterpieces. This voyage celebrates art, history, food and customs in France's most alluring urbane and pastoral settings.

France's Finest
Paris to Avignon
15 DAYS 13 TOURS 1 COUNTRY
From $3,999
Explore Paris, Burgundy & Provence
Pay your respects at Normandy's World War II beaches. Walk in Joan of Arc's footsteps at Rouen. Luxuriate in Paris's sophistication. Savor Lyon's culinary heritage. Toast the Beaujolais vineyards. Explore Avignon's Palace of the Popes. Celebrate the Provencal lifestyle. Art, cuisine, style, joie de vivre-if you love everything Francais, this is for you: a 15-day journey that combines our popular Paris & the Heart of Normandy and Lyon & Provence cruises into one tour de force.

Find more river cruises on the Seine

Best Douro River Cruises
The Douro River travels along ancient wine estates, passing barcos rabelos laden with casks en route to Porto and Lisbon, defining a sublimely scenic corner of Europe.
Our Portugal cruises uncover one of Europe's oldest and most renowned wine regions. Cruise the Douro River through ancient wine estates, passing barcos rabelos laden with casks en route to Porto and Lisbon. A sublimely scenic corner of Europe, with equally sublime food and wine.

Find The Douro River Cruise Just Right For Me

Best Douro River Cruise Offers for 2022 -2023

Portugal's River of Gold
Lisbon to Porto
10 DAYS 8 TOURS 2 COUNTRIES
FROM $3,299

Enjoy the Douro's beauty & history
Experience the renaissance of Lisbon, newly invigorated with trending galleries and restaurants. Explore two of Iberia's oldest university towns: Coimbra, Portugal and Salamanca, Spain. Roam the port warehouses of Porto. Enjoy traditional cuisine, wine and fado singing. Cruise the Douro River Valley, the world's oldest demarcated wine region and a UNESCO Site. Our 10-day cruisetour includes a hotel stay in Lisbon and the added bonus of a visit to Spain.
 

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Here is a sample of just a few exciting highlights of European river cruises.
Visits to Germany's charming wine-producing villages
Culinary delights in Lyon, France
Medieval Prague, "City of a Thousand Spires"
The elegant boulevards and grand monuments of Paris
Historic Wittenberg, home to Martin Luther
Fairytale windmills of The Netherlands
Wine tastings in the quintas of Portugal's Douro Valley
Budapest's regal Parliament building and Chain Bridge
Vienna's inspirational legacy of classical music
France's famed wineries in Beaujolais, Bordeaux and beyond

 2022-20223-2024 Viking® Cruise Destinations Overview & Guide

1. Danube River Cruises
Glide along the gentle waters of the Danube, the heart and soul of Central Europe. These legendary waters flow through 10 countries, coursing through Germany, Austria and Hungary to the Black Sea. Our Danube River cruises deliver you to culture-rich banks, from scenic vineyards to spectacular monasteries and elegant cities that have inspired composers and writers for centuries. 

Find your inspiration on one of the Danube Cruises >>Go!

Highlights of the Danube River
A Danube River cruise unveils Europe's rich and dramatic history. Glittering cultural capitals, lush vineyards, magnificent monasteries and endless scenic splendor line the river's banks. Here are some sample highlights you will see with Viking:

Enchanting Passau, set where three rivers meet
Lush vineyards of the Wachau Valley
The baroque splendor of Melk Abbey
Vienna's elegant architecture
The splendid Benedictine Abbey of Gottweig
Scenic beauty of the picturesque Danube Bend
Budapest's stunning Chain Bridge and Parliament Building
Soaring cliffs of the scenic Iron Gate
Romania's rural culture and rich folklore
Belgrade's impressive Kalemegdan Fortress

2. Rhine River Cruises
Hillside castles, lush riverbanks and storybook villages take center stage during our Rhine River cruises through Switzerland, Germany and The Netherlands. With the Main and Moselle Rivers, the Rhine forms one of the most spellbinding rivers systems in Europe. As you admire charming Dutch windmills and Germany's vineyard-cloaked hills, raise a glass of Riesling to the magnificent vistas unfolding on one of the Rhine Cruises >> Go!

Highlights of the Rhine River
A Rhine River cruise takes you into the heart of Middle Europe, where stately castles, fairytale villages and cultural centers have long been witnesses to history. The river's banks are brimming with historic treasures, natural beauty and vibrant capitals. Here are a few highlights Viking reveals to you:

Amsterdam's charming canals and gabled houses
Windmills of Kinderdijk, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Cologne's Gothic Dom
Rudesheim's wine-growing region
Marksburg Castle, perched above scenic Braubach
Multicultural Strasbourg
Breathtaking views of the legendary Black Forest
The distinct French-German culture of Alsace
Mythical Lorelei Rock at the Middle Rhine Gorge
Stunning Heidelberg, inspiration to writers and philosophers

 

3. Moselle River Cruises
The romantic Moselle River winds through an enchanting landscape of steep, emerald vineyards, legendary castles and picture-book villages strung like pearls along the riverbank. Its terraced slate hillsides draping to the water's edge form one of the most spectacular wine regions in Europe. The rich wine-making traditions of Germany are also ever-present here, as you're sure to discover during one of Viking's Moselle River Cruises >> Go!

Highlights of the Moselle River
The Moselle River meets the Rhine at Koblenz, Germany. On the way, it weaves and twists from France, forms a natural boundary between Luxembourg and Germany and follows a sinewy path past breathtaking vistas of sloping vineyards. The Holy Roman Empire had one of its major capitals here, the magnificent city of Trier, and tidy villages emerged on its fertile shores to produce what would become some of the world's most loved wines. Here are a few sample highlights of what awaits you on a Viking Moselle cruise:

Trier's fascinating ruins from its days as a Roman capital
The fairytale charms of Bernkastel-Kues
Luxembourg City's elegant and stately architecture
Wine-making traditions that date back 2,000 years
The stunning medieval town of Cochem
Millennium-old Reichsburg Castle, perched on a hillside
The quaint Old Town of Koblenz, where the Moselle and Rhine meet
The refined, sweet flavors of the world's best Rieslings

 

4. Main River Cruises
Explore the heart of central Germany, drifting past forested hills, lush meadows and historic towns. A Main cruise between Bamberg and Mainz passes through 34 impressive locks, built to make these waters navigable. But perhaps the river's most impressive feature is its link to the Danube via the Main-Danube Canal, enabling river travel across the entire length of Europe. Choose from one of Viking's Main River Cruises >> Go!
 

Highlights of the Main River
The scenic Main River seems to take its time on its circuitous route to the Rhine, twisting and arcing its way at a leisurely pace through Germany's scenic landscapes. Throughout its past, it has served as a geographic and cultural divide, separating languages, cuisines and religions. Today, this lazy waterway is a source of pride for all Germans, lined with picturesque preserved forestland, sprawling vineyards and some of the nation's most beloved cultural and historic landmarks. Here is a sample of what you may experience during a Viking Main river cruise:

The wide, undulating loops of the scenic Main River
Charming half-timbered houses in Miltenberg
The glassblowing tradition of Spessart
The enormous and ornate Bishops' Residenz of Wurzbrug
Picturesque Bamberg and its Town Hall built on a river's bridge
Distinctive rauchbier, the local smoke-flavored beer
Toy-making heritage of Nuremberg
Nuremberg's scenic Old Town and Market Square

5. Seine River Cruises
Meandering on a serpentine path through the serene Norman countryside, a Viking Seine river cruise delivers you to the picturesque and storied locales of Northern France, from elegant Paris and Claude Monet's home at Giverny to the Normandy beaches. Seine cruises drift past dreamy apple orchards, soaring cliffs, castle ruins and historic Rouen, the region's cultural capital. Join one of our France River Cruises >> Go!

Highlights of the Seine River
It is only 110 miles as the crow flies from Paris to the English Channel, but the Seine River snakes its way through 240 miles of magnificent Norman vistas. There is much to see as this waterway winds through France's history: the riverside cultural monuments of Paris, scenic vistas that still today inspire great artists, farmlands that produce Calvados apple liqueur, and so much more. Here are some select highlights you will enjoy during a Seine river cruise:

The magnificent sights of Paris, from the Eiffel Tower to Notre Dame Cathedral
Claude Monet's beautiful house and gardens at Giverny
Rouen's spectacular Gothic cathedral
Normandy's historic beaches, site of the 1944 D-Day landings
The remains of Chateau Gaillard, Richard the Lionheart's castle
Napoleon's final home, Chateau de Malmaison
Scenic farmlands dotted with Norman cows and half-timbered houses
Creamy samples of locally made Brie and Camembert cheeses

6. Rhone River Cruises
A Rhone river cruise with Viking delivers you to the gastronomic heart of France, traversing scenic wine-growing regions and pausing to explore charming Provencal villages and historic cities like Avignon and Arles. It is pure privilege to experience this celebrated corner of Southern France on a Rhone cruise, from culinary Lyon to the unspoiled Camargue. Among France river cruises, a journey along the Rhone is unmatched >> Learn More.

Highlights of the Rh�ne River
The Rhone River winds its way into France from the Rhone Glacier in Valais, Switzerland, meeting the Saone at Lyon. Its waters flow past some of the country's most significant historic landmarks, some dating back to Roman times. Blanketed with lavender and sunflower fields that display their full color in summer, the Rhone's Provence region has long been an inspiration to artists. Above all, its vineyards and farms produce France's famed wines and cuisine. Here are a few sample highlights of a Rhone river cruise:

Avignon, "City of Popes," and its historic palace
The massive Roman arena of Arles
Espace van Gogh, the Arles hospital that treated the artist
Charming riverside village of Viviers
The spectacular gorges of the Ardeche plateau
Lyon, France's grand culinary capital
Distinctive wineries and cellars of Beaujolais

7. Elbe River Cruises
Sail the Elbe River to reaches seldom seen. Traversing the beauty of the Czech Republic and Germany, you will uncover an intimate side of Central Europe, pausing to explore Berlin and Prague. From the rock-strewn cliffs of Saxon Switzerland to historic Wittenberg, an Elbe River cruise with Viking presents a moving portrait of a fascinating nation. Enlightening insights greet you around every bend along Germany's most treasured river. >> Learn More

Highlights of the Elbe River
The once divisive Elbe River is today a symbol of unity. Along this scenic river, East Germany became free, and cities that once lay in rubble now stand tall. With much of this breathtaking river unaltered by mankind, it is a truly inspirational waterway. Here are some sample highlights you will see with Viking:

Berlin's ultra-modern, forward-thinking architecture
Rococo splendor of Potsdam
The incredibly preserved medieval city of Prague
Dresden's baroque wonders, risen from wartime ashes
The natural beauty of the Elbe Biosphere Reserve
Saxon's Switzerland's monoliths of natural rock formations
Wittenberg, birthplace of the Protestant Reformation
Meissen's famed porcelain factory

 


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