Scenic Transylvania and the Danube Spirit of the Danube River Cruise

Your holiday begins with a three-night hotel stay in Transylvania, where you’ll visit the imposing castle that inspired the creation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula and enjoy a walking tour of Brasov and its Gothic church. You’ll embark our new ship, Spirit of the Danube, in Braila to begin your cruise along the River Danube stopping to explore the historic cities of Bucharest, Belgrade and Mohacs en route to historic Budapest. You’ll also spend a day cruising the Iron Gates gorge with its dramatic mountain scenery…

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Spirit of the Danube 2022 Cruises
Brasov

Itinerary

Fly to Bucharest. Transfer to the locally rated 5-star Aro Palace Hotel (4Q), in the heart of Transylvania, for a three night half-board stay. Enjoy dinner at the hotel throughout your stay.

Head to the centre of Brasov for an enjoyable walking tour of this beautiful town, including entrance to the 14th-century Black Church. The interior of this Gothic church was destroyed by a fire in 1689 which left the outer walls and roof blackened.

Enjoy an included visit to 14th-century Bran Castle, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula, even though the author never visited Transylvania! It is thought that Vlad the Impaler, ruler of this area – Walachia – in the 15th century, may have been imprisoned here.

Depart after breakfast for a scenic drive through the Carpathian Mountains to your ship. Stop for lunch and some free time in the hills en route.
Embark Spirit of the Danube and look forward to your welcome drink reception and dinner as you remain moored here overnight.

Enjoy the morning in Silistra, where you may like to explore the ruins of a medieval castle located on the riverbank.
Depart at lunchtime and enjoy the facilities on board your ship as you cruise towards Rousse this afternoon.

This morning you'll wake in Rousse, nicknamed 'Little Vienna', on account of the Austrian-style architecture here. The city prospered from its location on the Danube and is home to many grand buildings. A good example is the Building of the Tax Administration with its elaborate facade. Enjoy the day exploring and why not join an optional city tour?
You remain moored here overnight.

Your ship departs Rousse early allowing you the morning to explore Svistov, one of the largest Bulgarian Danube ports.
Enjoy an included scenic journey by coach across the Danubian Plain to the town of Pleven, on the River Vit, a tributary of the Danube. in 1877, when Bulgaria was trying to escape Ottoman rule in the War of Liberation, the town was under siege for five months. The event is depicted in a vast circular panoramic painting which was opened to the public in 1977, the centenary of the siege. You’ll walk through the town with your guide to the Pleven Panorama and afterwards enjoy a glass of Bulgarian wine in a hotel. Alternatively, head to nearby Veliko Tarnovo on an optional excursion.
Depart this afternoon for Nikopol where you pause briefly before cruising towards the Iron Gates.

Cruise the Danube as it passes through the southern stretch of the dramatic Carpathian mountains and the foothills of the Balkans to the ‘Iron Gates’, a gorge framed by sheer cliffs. The passage was hazardous in ancient times as the water level was much lower, making it treacherous to navigate. Even though water levels have been raised the journey is still exciting.

This morning, join an included city tour of Serbia's capital, Belgrade, one of the oldest cities in Europe and the meeting point of Eastern and Western Europe. Depart after lunch and cruise to Novi Sad where you pause briefly for the opportunity to join an optional city tour rejoining your ship in Mohács, Hungary.
Alternatively you can stay on board as Spirit of the Danube cruises to Mohács.

Arrive in Mohács this morning with a couple of hours to explore the home of some of Hungary’s most exciting folk traditions. Perhaps join an optional full-day excursion through the Hungarian lowlands where you can enjoy a performance of traditional horsemanship, rejoining your ship when she pauses briefly in Kalocsa.
Spirit of the Danube continues cruising to Budapest.

Arrive in the early hours, giving you a day in this thrilling city. Experience the culture and local cuisine on an included culinary-themed walking tour which visits the First Strudel House and the Central Market Hall or choose to join an included tour and see some of the city’s highlights. This afternoon perhaps join an optional excursion to Gödöllo Palace or the Lazar Equestrian Park horse farm.
Your ship remains moored here overnight.

This morning, disembark Spirit of the Danube after breakfast and travel to the airport for your return flight to the UK.

Price Guide

Date Price from (pp)
12 June 2022^ £2,649
21 September 2022 £2,399

What's Included

  • Low deposit of only £99pp
  • VIP door-to-door travel service
  • Optional travel insurance or a discount of £54 if not required†
  • A selection of return transport including UK flights, Eurostar or coach travel (subject to availability and some may carry a supplement)
  • 8 nights on board Spirit of the Danube
  • 3 night hotel stay in Transylvania
  • 30 meals: 11 breakfasts, 8 lunches and 11 dinners
  • All gratuities on board
  • Wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Saga cruise director & Saga cruise escort on board

Excursion Guide

  • Budapest city tour OR Budapest culinary walking tour
  • Belgrade and the Kalemegdan Fortress
  • Pleven Panoramic
  • Brosov city tour
  • Bran Castle
  • Tour of Rousse
  • Veliko Tarnovo
  • Novi Sad tour
  • Discover traditional Hungary in Kalocsa and Puszta
  • Gödöllo Palace
  • Lazar Equestrian Park