Travel Guide: Budapest & Vienna by Luxury Cruise

If you’re looking for a unique and relaxing way to experience the beauty and charm of Eastern Europe, a river cruise along the Danube might be just the ticket. I had no idea the river cruises were a thing, much less something I wanted to do. Recently, I had the pleasure of embarking on a scenic journey aboard the Scenic Jasper, starting in Budapest, Hungary and ending in Vienna, Austria and it was AMAZING! I’m about to get y’all into river cruising.

Our adventure began in Budapest, a city known for its stunning architecture, rich history, and vibrant culture. We spent the morning at Fisherman’s Bastion admiring the beautiful architecture and views from above the city.

After boarding the Scenic Jasper, we were welcomed by the friendly crew and settled into our comfortable cabins. As we set sail, we enjoyed a delicious lunch on board and took in the stunning views of Budapest’s iconic landmarks, including the Parliament Building and Buda Castle.

Our first port of call was Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia. We took a walking tour of the city’s charming Old Town, which is filled with historic buildings and charming squares. We learned about Bratislava’s rich history and its fascinating mix of cultures, from Roman ruins to Gothic churches to baroque palaces. We also sampled some delicious local cuisine and wine, including the famous Bratislava Roll.

Next, we cruised through the picturesque Wachau Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its stunning landscapes, quaint villages, and vineyards. We stopped in the charming town of Durnstein, where we explored the narrow streets and historic buildings and enjoyed some local wine and apricot brandy. We also visited the ruins of Durnstein Castle, where Richard the Lionheart was famously held captive during the Crusades.

Our final stop before Vienna was Melk, a small town known for its stunning Benedictine Abbey. We toured the Abbey, which dates back to the 11th century and is considered one of the finest examples of baroque architecture in Europe. We marveled at the intricate frescoes, ornate statues, and beautiful gardens, and learned about the history of the Abbey and its importance in the region.

Finally, we arrived in Vienna, one of Europe’s most beautiful and culturally rich cities. We took a guided tour of the city’s highlights, including St. Stephen’s Cathedral, the Hofburg Palace, and the famous Vienna Opera House. At night, we were enriched by a private concert with the Viennese Philharmonic Orchestra. We also had some free time to explore the city on our own, sampling local cuisine, shopping for souvenirs, and taking in the lively atmosphere of this vibrant city.Overall, our river cruise on the Scenic Jasper was a wonderful and unforgettable experience. We enjoyed luxurious accommodations, delicious cuisine, and stunning scenery, all while learning about the rich history and culture of Eastern Europe. Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-time visitor, I highly recommend a river cruise along the Danube – it’s truly an adventure of a lifetime!


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