As the new Jewish year, 5777, launches, families and friends will gather to celebrate the beginning of the New Year. Those interested in delving deeply into Central Europe’ s rich Jewish history will be pleased to know that two river cruise lines will offer Jewish Heritage specialty themed departures. (NOTE: Kosher foods are not included.)
Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection will offer “Rhine-Main Discovery & Munich,” a 10-day cruise-tour between Munich and Cologne. The sailing will feature onboard Signature Lectures highlighting an in-depth exploration of the fascinating history of Jewish people in Europe. Tailored shoreside excursions will range from visits to the Dachau concentration camp and Courtroom 600, where the Nuremberg trials took place to the archaeological traces of the Frankfurt ghetto and the Rothschild family. Two sailings in July 2017, are designated award-winning Generations Family Programs providing wonderful opportunities for families to discover their cultural heritage.
Avalon Waterways theme cruise is on the “Blue Danube Discovery and Jewish Heritage” itinerary in August 2017. Distinguished experts will present enlightening lectures about the sites and events that played roles in Central Europe’s Jewish heritage. In Budapest, visit the world’s second-largest synagogue. Visit the Stadttempel in Vienna, whose extraordinary location saved it from devastation during the Kristallnacht in 1938. Delve into the Document Neupfarrplatz museum in Regensburg with its vestiges of a medieval Jewish ghetto and ancient synagogue. In Prague, explore the city’s Jewish Museum and cemetery, then travel to Terezin, one of Czechoslovakia’s largest concentration camps. Hear chilling stories about the daily lives of the Jews imprisoned there, and visit the poignant memorial.
We help culturally curious travelers to plan an amazing vacation that offers enrichment and a chance to explore a special interest such as ancestral or religious heritage, photography, wellness, gardening, literature. It’s our goal to create personalized vacation experiences and lasting memories for travelers who not only want to see the world but to appreciate it with all their senses.
If you are considering a Jewish Heritage-themed river cruise, please feel free to send me an email or call me so we can discuss your vacation plans in detail.
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European river cruise pioneer, AMA Waterways, offers its passengers boutique vessels and a premium vacation experience. With a maximum capacity of 162 guests and a high staff-to-passenger ratio, you’ll experience superior service and attention to detail by professionally-trained staff. Experienced ocean cruisers will notice the contrast when on the Sun Deck, stunned by spectacular panoramic and constantly changing views of charming villages, castles and vineyards gliding by, not just water as far as you can see.
Small group excursions with local guides are included in every port and separated according to your interests and expectations. Choose from leisurely paced “Gentle Walkers,” “Active Walkers” for those interested in covering a lot, and even a “Late Starter” group for those who want to sleep in. Bicycles are free for you to borrow to venture out on your own or join a complimentary guided tour.
Surprisingly, though the vessel is a fraction of the size of most ocean ships, you do not have to sacrifice hotel-amenity indulgences. Pamper your body and rejuvenate your spirit with a masseuse, beauty therapist or hair stylist appointment or take advantage of the well-equipped Fitness Center and sauna. And, in the evening different performers from the region come on board to delight guests with sparkling, traditional music and dance entertainment. It’s the ideal complement to each day’s exploration in port.
Cabin size starts at 170 square feet and are filled with fine hotel amenities that cruisers have come to expect. You’ll want to choose AMA’s signature French Balcony stateroom or the 255 square foot Jr. Suite (these sell quickly.) Open the floor-to-ceiling glass door of your French Balcony to bring in the riverside scenery and take your first pictures of the day or last before setting sail. No need to pack a hair dryer or robe and slippers—it’s standard in every cabin. Enjoy marble-appointed bathrooms and generous shower with multi-jet showerhead, spa-quality toiletries, plenty of storage space, a safe, cozy sitting area, and plush bedding. Complimentary internet, movies, TV, and news are available on your staterooms flat-panel screen.
“How’s the food?” is one of the first questions our clients ask about a cruise line. AMA’s chefs complement the region by offering the traditional dishes of the itinerary ports-of-call using local produce in keeping with the destination. The free flowing wine with dinner gives you the pleasure of sampling various fine vintages produced by European vineyards. You can kick breakfast up a notch with champagne, too!
The AmaDagio is at once sleek and contemporary and welcoming. Relax in the inviting Main Lounge with comfortable seating and your selection of complimentary specialty coffee or tea for a port lecture, shore excursion talk or evening entertainment. It’s a stylish and sophisticated way to see Europe.
While this vessel features an elevator, an amenity not always offered by many river cruise ships, in port cobblestone streets, walkways and stairs can be problematic to navigate if you are unsteady on your feet. Pace yourself and be sure to choose the “Gentle Walkers” guided tour. Typically the passengers onboard are well traveled, often on ocean cruises or guided tours. Many of our fellow passengers on the Legendary Danube itinerary were age 50+ and most from Australia/New Zealand, Great Britain and North America. But there were also mother/daughter, girl-friend getaways, and multi-generational groups on board. Our cruise manager, Elke Vannieuwerburgh, remarked on the trend toward younger passengers as river cruising increases in popularity.
Which itinerary should you choose for your first river cruise? Of course, your own special interests may dictate the destinations, but approximately 70% of our clients inquire initially about the famous Danube River. This is an outline of the itinerary I took called, The Legendary Danube.
We began the voyage with a pre-cruise hotel package in historic Prague, “the city of a hundred spires.” The 7 night cruise on the Danube, Europe’s second largest river, sailed from Nuremberg through the Main-Danube Canal across the Continental Divide past centuries-old towns unfolding around us. We entered Austria and cruised through the lush Wachau wine region. Then, concluded our European river cruise vacation with two grand capitals, magnificent Vienna and exotic Budapest.
1 Overnight flight to Czech Republic
2 Prague Transfer to hotel
3 Prague City tour
4 Prague Optional tours available
5 Prague Transfer to Karlovy Vary
Karlovy Vary Free time
Welcome Cocktail & Dinner
6 Nuremberg City tour
Cruise Main-Danube Canal
Lecture on Canal project
Hilpoltstein Crossing continental divide
7 Regensburg Walking tour
Audi factory tour (when available)
8 Passau Walking tour
Salzburg Optional Salzburg excursion
Linz Free evening
9 Melk Benedictine Abbey tour
Wachau Valley cruise
Vienna Optional evening concert
10 Vienna City tour
11 Budapest City tour
12 Budapest DISEMBARKATION
Right now AMA Waterways has a “Triple Savings Promotion” on select 7 night Legendary Danube departures: SAVE $500 PER STATEROOM, COMPLIMENTARY UPGRADE & $100 SHIPBOARD CREDIT
Prices start at $2349 + tax per person based on double occupancy for the 7 night cruise.