Sail on Riviera’s latest ship on New 2018 River Cruise to the Black Sea
Leading European river cruise line, Riviera Travel, will debut a new route on the Danube from Budapest to the Black Sea in 2018 and Australia’s Cruiseco has partnered with Riviera to launch a special fly/cruise package enabling Australians to sail behind the former Iron Curtain on two river journeys through eastern Europe.
Cruiseco’s new 22-night ‘Danube to the Black Sea’ package combines two, back-to- back sailings on the Danube from Budapest in Hungary aboard Riviera Travel’s new, 167-guest, five-star river ship, Thomas Hardy, launched earlier this year.
Departing Australia on September 28, 2018, the itinerary begins in Hungary with night in Budapest followed by a 14-night cruise on the Danube east from Budapest to the Black Sea and back and a seven-night return Danube sailing west from Budapest to Austria – both on the Thomas Hardy.
The first cruise east from the imperial city of Budapest traces Riviera Travel’s new 2018 route along the Danube through Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania and Bulgaria to the mouth of the river on the Black Sea. Highlights include the Art Nouveau capital of Belgrade, the sheer, limestone cliffs of the Iron Gates Gorge, the faded grandeur of Bucharest with its Paris-like ambience, the pristine, World Heritage listed Danube Delta, the fragrant pine forests of the Balkans, the ruined fortress and ancient churches of Pleven in Bulgaria, the old town port of Constanta on the Black Sea and the medieval Smederevo Fortress, lining the river in Serbia. Sixteen guided excursions by coach and foot are included in the 14-night cruise.
Returning to Budapest, guests remain aboard the Thomas Hardy for the second cruise, this time west along the Danube to the Austrian town of Linz and return. Highlights include the grand, Renaissance basilica of Esztergom, standing sentinel over the Danube in Hungary, the Baroque old town of Bratislava in Slovakia, the magnificent, honey-coloured abbey at Melk and the romance of Salzburg and Vienna. After returning to Budapest, guests will fly back to Australia. The seven-night cruise includes seven guided excursions by coach and foot.
Named after the 19th Century English writer, the Thomas Hardy is an elegant and spacious, Swiss-built ship, boasting two restaurants, fine dining, a grand, marble lobby, sumptuous lounges, sun deck with splash pool and a gym, with most cabins offering a French or full balcony.
Including return flights, accommodation, transfers in Budapest, the two cruises, 23 excursions, onboard meals, afternoon teas and late-night snacks, Wi-Fi and unique, in-cabin tea and coffee-making facilities, the 22-night ‘Danube to the Black Sea’ package is available from $10,895 per person, twin-share, from Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane or Perth.
To book the package, see a travel agent or visit www.cruising.com.au/grand-danube
Offering inclusive, five-star cruises at fares up to 50 per cent lower than river companies more established in Australia, Riviera Travel recently launched in Australia with a dedicated website and brochure – both in Australian dollars. In 2018, Riviera’s 11 luxury river ships will offer more than 300 cruises across 12 different itineraries in Europe. For general information on Riviera Travel’s river cruises, visit www.rivieratravel.com.au