The Great Rivers of Europe

16 days
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4.6/5 Excellent
100+ reviews  
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Cancellation Policy
River Cruise
Cruise through history along the scenic Rhine, Main, and Danube rivers, where medieval architecture beckons from every riverbank ... time-honored wine-making traditions abound at hillside vineyards ... and landscapes seem to spring from the canvases of centuries-old masterworks. As you journey to the Netherlands, Germany, and Austria, you'll get a taste of lo...
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Trip type
River Cruise
Lodging level
Premium - 4 star
Physical level
Trip pace
Flexible schedule


    • Unpack just once, journey 948 miles through three countries, and enjoy an abundance of included features—from all meals to 11 guided tours, and more—on our #1 River Cruise for more than a decade
    • Cruise aboard our award-winning 140- to 164-passenger ships with a dedicated English-speaking crew
    • Experience this European itinerary, and uncover a local and American perspective in destinations like Nuremberg’s Room 600
    • Explore with an expert, local Program Director—a native or resident of Europe—who will be dedicated to your group of no more than 47 from the start to the end of your trip

What's this trip about?

    Cruise through history along the scenic Rhine, Main, and Danube rivers, where medieval architecture beckons from every riverbank ... time-honored wine-making traditions abound at hillside vineyards ... and landscapes seem to spring from the canvases of centuries-old masterworks. As you journey to the Netherlands, Germany, and Austria, you'll get a taste of local culture both onboard and off—like during an Apfelstrudel baking lesson in the ship's kitchen, and while savoring a Home-Hosted Kaffeeklatsch in Germany. This value-packed European River Cruise has reigned as our most popular trip for more than a decade—we hope you'll see why when you join us.

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Itinerary focusClassic Highlights
Group sizeStandard Group - 25 + people
Age rangeNo age restrictions
Flights and transportN/A
Start CityAmsterdam
End CityVienna

Travel Themes

  • Cultural
  • National Parks
  • Nature & Wildlife
  • Small Ship Cruise


  • Europe
  • Austria
  • Germany
  • Netherlands


  • Amsterdam
  • Bamberg
  • Frankfurt
  • Heidelberg
  • Koblenz
  • Nuremberg
  • Vienna


  • Culture
  • Historic sightseeing
  • History
  • Nature

Trip includes

    • Accommodations: 14 nights aboard a private Grand Circle river ship in an outside cabin
    • ALL meals, including Captain's Welcome and Farewell receptions and dinners: 14 breakfasts, 14 lunches, and 14 dinners (and beverages—including beer, wine, and soft drinks—during all onboard lunches and dinners)
    • 11 exclusive, included tours with personal headsets: Amsterdam • Cologne • Koblenz • Heidelberg • Wertheim • Wurzburg • Bamberg • Nuremberg • Regensburg • Passau • Vienna
    • Exclusive Discovery Series events: Glassblowing demonstration • Home-Hosted Kaffeeklatsch • Rhine-Main-Danube Canal discussion and transit
    • Airport transfers upon arrival and departure with the purchase of Grand Circle's airfare
    • All port charges—a value of $165 per person
    • Gratuities for local guides and motorcoach drivers on your main trip
    • Baggage handling for 1 piece of luggage per person, including tips
    • 5% Frequent Traveler Credit on your next Grand Circle trip—an average of $315

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Travel Map

Day 1: Depart U.S.

Depart today on your flight to Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Please refer to your individual air itinerary for exact departure and arrival times.

Day 2: Amsterdam, the Netherlands • Embark ship

Meals: Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

Arrive today in Amsterdam. You are met at the airport by a Grand Circle representative and transferred to the pier to board your river ship.

Enjoy a light lunch onboard and time ...

Day 3:

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

After breakfast, join us for an included canal boat tour through the heart of Amsterdam, from which you'll enjoy a matchless perspective of the city's architectural achieveme...

Day 4: Cologne, Germany

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

This morning, your ship will continue sailing toward Germany.

You'll arrive in Cologne after an onboard lunch, and you'll disembark for an included walking tour. Colog...

Day 5: Koblenz • Rudesheim

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

This morning, enjoy a walking tour of Koblenz, set at the confluence of the Rhine and Mosel rivers. Originally established as an outpost of the Roman Empire and named Castell...

Day 6: Frankfurt • Heidelberg

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

Disembark in Frankfurt, where the morning is yours to enjoy on your own; or, you may transfer by motorcoach for a full-day included tour of Heidelberg. You begin by touring t...

Day 7: Glassblowing demonstration • Wertheim • Home-Hosted Kaffeeklatsch

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

As you cruise, enjoy an onboard glassblowing demonstration, an exclusive Discovery Series event and fitting introduction to your next port of call: Wertheim.

Upon arri...

Day 8: Wurzburg

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

Early this morning, your ship will set off from Wertheim as your European River Cruise continues.

This afternoon, we’ll dock in Wurzburg, a city on the Main River in B...

Day 9: Gerlachshausen • Optional Rothenburg tour • Schweinfurt

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

Spend the day on the water as we cruise the Main River and sail into Schweinfurt this afternoon.

Or, disembark during a stop in Gerlachshausen for an optional tour of ...

Day 10: Bamberg • Rhine-Main-Danube Canal discussion and transit

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

Go ashore this morning for a walking tour of Bamberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site founded in AD 902. Bamberg began to prosper in the twelfth century and was the center of so...

Day 11: Nuremberg

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

This morning, you'll disembark for a panoramic tour of Nuremberg, Bavaria's second-largest city and the most important city in Franconia, with a local guide. Once the unoffic...

Day 12: Kelheim • Optional Bavaria: Baroque & Beer tour • Regensburg

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

This morning, we sail to Kelheim. You can enjoy leisure activities aboard ship.Or, delve deeper into the Danube's scenic splendor this morning during our optional Bavaria: Ba...

Day 13: Passau • Captain's Farewell Dinner

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

After breakfast, you'll enjoy a walking tour of Passau, situated at the confluence of the Danube, Ilz, and Inn rivers. Called the Dreifluessestadt (City on Three Rivers), Pas...

Day 14: Melk, Austria • Vienna • Optional Musical Vienna tour 

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

You arrive at Melk early in the morning. From your ship, you'll be able to see the formidable Melk Abbey as it rises up from the surrounding countryside along the Danube. Aft...

Day 15: Vienna

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

After breakfast onboard the ship, you'll enjoy a tour of Vienna via motorcoach, including the Ringstrasse, one of the many achievements of the Emperor Franz Joseph. In 1857, ...

Day 16: Vienna • Return to U.S.

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodations: Private Grand Circle River Ship

After breakfast, you'll disembark the ship, and you'll be transferred to the airport for your flight home. Or, you may opt to begin your post-trip extension in Vienna, Austria or Prague, Czech Republic.

Want a tailor-made trip instead?

Your trip, your way, planned by an expert:

  • You choose budget, destinations, activities, transport & lodging type
  • Expert designs the itinerary for you, and once approved, takes care of logistics
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Dates & Availability

Price From $2,995
Price per day$187
Single supplement (single occupancy)$745
Last Updated: 11/15/2019

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Grand Circle Cruise Line.

The total tour cost includes the tour price (regular or promotional) and the compulsory local payment. The promotional price is subject to change. Check directly with the operator for the latest price offer. The tour operator requires you to pay only the tour price to purchase your travel. The compulsory local payment will be paid when you join the trip. All prices are based on double, twin or triple share occupancy. Solo passengers will be accommodated in a double, twin or triple room according to availability with a passenger(s) of the same gender. Single supplement only needs to be paid if the passenger does not want to share and requests their own room. Discounts can only be applied at the time of booking and cannot be added at a later date, regardless of any changes made to the original booking.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

Grand Circle Cruise Line Reviews & Ratings

4.6/5  Excellent
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Other Grand Circle Cruise Line Reviews



Jul 2021

Grand Circle Cruise Line Company Reviewsby Grand Circle Cruise Line

Company has gone downhill

I am a 12 time traveler with Grand Circle and OAT. But maybe no more. They are impossible to reach by phone without waiting for hours. I even tired their emergenc...


Constance B.

Jan 2020

Grand Circle Cruise Line Company Reviewsby Grand Circle Cruise Line

A great trip, we really

A great trip, we really enjoyed it a lot.


Wayne D.

Dec 2019

Grand Circle Cruise Line Company Reviewsby Grand Circle Cruise Line

Considered the Best of the Best!,,,,

The Places covered by the trip were full of historical facts worthy of remembering till the last days of our lives!,,,, Our Travel Director, RENE BAUER , is super kn...

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Tour Operator

Grand Circle Cruise Line

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Grand Circle Small Ship Cruises serves both our Grand Circle Travel and Overseas Adventure Tour (OAT) brands with an award-winning fleet known for exceptional value and high-quality experiences in Europe, Asia, Africa, and South America. Custom-designed according to our travelers’ specifications, our fleet includes 50+ small river and ocean-going ships that we own or privately charter.

Grand Circle Foundation

Grand Circle Foundation was established in 1992 as a means to give back to the world that had already given us so much. Since its inception, our Foundation has donated or pledged more than $50 million to educational, humanitarian, and cultural organizations worldwide.


Grand Circle Travel—Worldwide Discovery by Land & by Ship


Traveling with Grand Circle is about more than sightseeing. It’s about immersing yourself in other cultures, sharing the warm camaraderie of like-minded American travelers, and feeling comfortable, safe, and well-cared for every step of the way. It’s not simply a destination you’ll find, but a profound awareness of the life-changing joy of cultural connections, and we’ve been creating those connections for more than 50 years.

Explore by land

Travel by Ship

Meet cogenial, like-minded friends

Our Program Director's share an insider's perspective

Meet local people where they live, work and play

Travel safe, confident, and carefree

Traveling for change: One village, one leader, one life at a time

Travel with the Leader in Worldwide Learning & Discovery

Bring your travel dreams to life: witness the breathtaking expanse of China from atop the Great Wall … visit centuries-old windmills in Holland, and meet those who call the iconic structures home … ride a donkey to the top of ancient isles in Santorini, Greece... Visions like these are everyday realities for Grand Circle travelers, thanks to the principles that ground every one of our vacations: value, choice, discovery, and careful pacing.

Our VALUE puts your travel dreams within reach

Grand Circle can help you realize your travel dreams for a lot less than you ever thought possible. That’s because each of our Small Ship Cruise Tours, River Cruise's, and Land Tours includes full-service accommodations, included tours, exclusive Discovery Series events, and so much more. And, because we work with our regional offices located throughout the world, we’ve been able to establish long-term relationships with many local vendors and hotels. Buying direct brings down our costs—and allows us to pass the savings on to you. And negotiating directly for hotel space also allows us to secure as many single room allotments as possible for our solo travelers. That way, we can also extend our great value to solo travelers, too! In fact, we offer the best value and benefits for solo travelers, guaranteed.

The CHOICE is yours

You’ll always have plenty of choices with Grand Circle. We offer you a breadth of awe-inspiring travel destinations—from Europe’s great, culture-laden capitals and the lush vineyards of French and German wine regions, to the scenic natural beauty of Chile's Lakes District and Australia's Great Barrier Reef. You’ll also enjoy more optional trip extensions—such as excursions to Phnom Penh & Angkor Wat, Cambodia or Prague, Czech Republic—enabling you to enhance your regional discovery and maximize the value of your already included airfare. You have plenty of choices within each vacation, too, enabling you to follow your own pace and tailor your experience to your own interests with our optional tours. And the free time we’ve woven into our itineraries gives you the opportunity for independent exploration. You can shop, linger at a sidewalk cafe, visit an art gallery or museum, or perhaps explore a cobbled street that caught your eye earlier in the day. You can do as much or as little as you want on Grand Circle vacation—the choice is yours.

DISCOVERIES that enrich and inspire

Wherever you travel with Grand Circle, you can always count on us to provide a rewarding, discovery-rich experience. With regional offices around the globe, we maintain a strong local presence in all the regions you’ll visit. Being a part of local communities means we offer the most illuminating cultural encounters and widest array of learning activities that reflect your destination. Participate in a discussion about life under communism in Eastern Europe. Try your hand at painting in Impressionism’s homeland. All these experiences, and others, have been designed to offer you a deeper understanding of the places you’ll visit—even as you have fun in the process. And because we know you’ll want to experience local life through the people who call your destination home, we’ve arranged for you to meet them where they live, work, and play. From Home-Hosted meals with local families and demonstrations by regional artisans, to touring a family-run winery or visiting a local school, we make sure you enjoy firsthand perspectives on everyday life, while forming connections you’ll never forget.

Well PACED—with an emphasis on comfort

Travel shouldn’t feel like a race from one site to the next. We know that you enjoy both visiting memorable locales and the chance to enjoy them at your own pace. We’ve planned itineraries that blend regional discovery with “down time,” during which you can explore as little or as much as you like—at your leisure. With well-located accommodations on land and conveniently situated docks for our small ships, you’ll be poised for discoveries of all kinds. While walking is our signature mode—allowing access to many of the most unmissable sites, we always balance any lengthy walking tours with plenty of time to refresh and rejuvenate. Plus, you can always rest assured that your safety and comfort are our top priority, with a resident Program Director along, and our local staff in a regional office nearby.

It's included with Grand Circle ...

  • Choose to purchase Grand Circle's airfare, and your airport transfers and government taxes, fees, and airline fuel surcharges are included. Or, make your own air arrangements
  • The services of expert, resident Program Directors who speak fluent English, as well as the native language
  • Accommodations at comfortable hotels and on private, Grand Circle-owned or chartered vessels
  • Most meals, including all meals during the cruise portions of our Grand Circle Cruise Line vacations
  • Guided sightseeing tours
  • Personal headsets on included and optional tours
  • Exclusive Discovery Series events
  • All internal transportation

And more

Now included for 2016

  • Gratuities for local guides and motorcoach drivers on all Grand Circle main trips, most optional tours, and most optional pre- and post-trip extensions
  • Beverages during lunch and dinner onboard Grand Circle Cruise Line ships, including beer, wine, and soft drinks
  • All port charges—a value of up to $250 per person
What they’re known for
Cruises to popular destinations for seniors wanting to travel at their own pace with optional excursions and plenty of free time.


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What's excluded

    • Internation airfare
    • Personal expenses
    • Passport and visa fees
Ship & cabin information
M/S River Adagio
The M/S River Adagio was ranked #26 in Condé Nast Traveler’s “Top 40 River Cruise Ships in the World” 2014 Readers’ Poll. One of the largest ships in Grand Circle's own deluxe fleet, the M/S River Adagio was built specifically for cruising the widest part of the Danube and the deeper waters leading to the Black Sea. Enjoy personalized attention from the ship staff, and up to four experienced Grand Circle Program Directors. And with no more than 164 fellow Grand Circle travelers aboard with you, you'll find it easy to make friends and share your experiences.
Registry: Malta Width: 38 feet Length: 418 feet Passenger capacity: 164 Crew/Nationality: 38/International Entered service: 2003 Decks: 4 Number of cabins: 82—all outside Elevator: Yes
Cancellation policy

Cancellation Charges for River Cruises and Small Ships:

Prior to departure and charges

121 days or more is 10% of selling price or $300—whichever is greater

120-90 days is $300

89-60 days is 40% of selling price

59-30 days is 65% of selling price

29 days–departure is 100% of selling price

Travel Insurance
We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance alongside your travel package to safeguard against unforeseen circumstances such as medical expenses, trip cancellations, and other contingencies. It offers you peace of mind and ensures you are prepared for unexpected events that may occur before or during your journey
Visa requirements
Visa requirements vary depending on your country of origin and your country of destination. It is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with the relevant requirements. For a handy tool that can help you quickly find the requirements, please visit this link .
Meals Included

14 Breakfasts, 14 Lunches, and 14 Dinners

Age Requirements
No age restrictions
Travelstride Take
The Great Rivers of Europe tour with Grand Circle is perfect for travelers looking for a reasonably priced river cruise experience through some of Europe's most classic cities and sites.    Enjoy the relaxation of unpacking only once and experiencing the wonder of Europe along the Rhine, Main, and Danube rivers. At 16 days, this is the perfect trip for really kicking back and getting into the slow pace of a river cruise.   Great for   Wine lovers   History lovers   50+
Optional Activities


Bruges, Belgium

3 nights from only $695

Prague, Czech Republic

4 nights from only $695

Vienna, Austria

3 nights from only $645

Additional Information
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