Do you want to experience Europe while enjoying Disney’s level of service? Here’s why you will love Adventures by Disney river cruises.
We have discussed why we love river cruising and we’ve discussed why we love Adventures by Disney. So, today we combine them together into some truly amazing itineraries and adventures.
Why do we keep discussing Adventures By Disney?
Firstly, the ABD destinations are fantastic trips even without the Disney Difference. By talking about these ABD itineraries, you get a great idea of what are the best experiences in each city.
Secondly, ABD trips are an excellent opportunity to travel deep and travel wide. ABD itineraries will take you through several destinations. In other words, they take you to travel wide through a variety of locations. Along the way, you have the opportunity to slow down and immerse yourself into local activities or customs, allowing you to travel deep in a particular location.
Thirdly, ABD is an efficient use of your travel time and your travel dollars. Since ABD knows the best experiences, has everything planned, and takes care of all the travel hassles, you get to focus your time and attention exclusively on your experience.
What is Adventures By Disney?
It is the epitome of a “done for you vacation”! One booking and your hotels and activities are planned!
They have unbelievable itineraries combined with the Disney Difference!
- Adventure Guides (Disney and local)
- Family Fun (activities for families, adults, and children)
- Authenticity (guides, itineraries, special extras)
- Insider Access (backstage pass)
- All-Inclusive nature of the trip packages!
2 Itineraries from Adventures By Disney River Cruises
- Ryan: Rhine River Cruise
- Shayne: Danube Oktoberfest Cruise
More Adventures By Disney Episodes
- Episode 9: What is Adventures By Disney?
- Episode 65: Adventures By Disney Montana and Italy Vacations.
- Episode 74: Adventures By Disney Alaska and Southern CA/Disneyland.
- Episode 85: Adventures By Disney River Cruises.
- Episode 119: Adventures By Disney Italy [Trip Report].
Question: What would be your favorite stop on these vacations?
Please let us know in the All Things Travel Podcast Facebook group!
Start Making Your Magical Memories!
Ryan and Shayne are both Travel Advisers with Creating Magic Vacations, an authorized Disney Vacation Planner. Feel free to reach out to us for a free quote and to start making magical memories.
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- Lake Villa, Illinois
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Episode 85 Transcript
Ryan: Hello, and welcome to All Things Travel. We’ve discussed why we love river cruising and we’ve discussed why we love Adventures by Disney. So today we’ll combine them into some truly amazing itineraries and adventures. You’re listening to All Things. Travel, episode 85 original air date, December 15, 20 21. so Shayne why do we keep discussing Adventures by Disney?
Shayne: I have three reasons.
Shayne: One, you can visit all of these places without Adventures by Disney. They’re all fantastic destination. So it’s a good way to learn about those destinations. And then how do it with adventures by Disney
Shayne: You and I have talked about traveling deep wide, and to me, these Adventures by Disney trips are a way to do a little bit of both because you’re hitting a lot of different places on each trip, but then you get to go pretty deep into some of the cultural immersions and the classes and the, and the meals and the arts and crafts you get.
Ryan: I like it and recent numbers.
Shayne: Number three, is that when you start getting my age, you start getting very cognizant of how you spend your time and realizing that time is the most valuable resource. And I think that being able to take one of these trips and travel deep and travel wide with everything taken care of for you is a great use of travel time
Ryan: wonderful. I love it. Hey, before we talk about Adventures by Disney, specifically river cruising with AmaWaterways today, want to know Where in the World is. All Things Travel.
Shayne: where in the world, lake Villa,
Shayne: It’s fun to say. Villa. Ella
Shayne: Villa, Villa, Illinois.
Ryan: being from the Midwest, you know what I’m going to tell you.
Shayne: It’s not.
Ryan: noise Illinois.
Shayne: And I never said pronounce it. I don’t know how to pronounce it that way, that time, but you’re not. I think what I would like to do is hang out at a place called Reflections on deep Lake or they serve what looks like delicious Polish food. And we could have a couple of drinks overlooking deep lake from there, looked like a dock on the water and it looks like they have an extensive.
Collection of accordions that might be diverting to check out,
Ryan: Well, I love it. Well, welcome. We are glad you’re listening.
Shayne: make some noise for Illinois, Illinois.
Ryan: Well for us, you know, that Adventures by Disney is the epitome of the done for you. Vacation, one booking and your hotels, your activities, everything is planned and the best part about river cruising. It’s one hotel and it’s a floating hotel that takes you to all of these amazing places. So just to refresh your memory, a couple reasons why adventures by Disney rises to the top for us, itineraries combined with the Disney difference.
some examples of that? Shayne?
Shayne: The adventure guides that are included with your trip, but it includes two Disney adventure guides to tell your stories and guide you along the way. And then oftentimes there’s also a local guide to help you go a little bit deeper into each of the stops
Ryan: absolutely. With it being Disney, you know, they’re going to have activities for everybody. Anybody from grandma and grandpa to parents, to little kids, they’re going to have that programming figured out. So grandma and grandpa can go wine tasting. The parents can go on a bike ride and the kids can do a special program just for them.
Shayne: And the authenticity that local guide along with planned meals and activities, are a part of the cultures of these destinations. Really give you an authentic experience. Into each of these places.
Ryan: And I think lastly, you know, just to reiterate again, it’s an all-inclusive nature of these trips. is taken care of from the time you reach the destination airport to the time you’re back at that airport to head home, you are taking care of and is planned out, mapped out. High level of service.
So let’s get into a chain. Let’s talk about river cruising with adventures by Disney. And I want to talk about the Rhine river cruise. And this goes from Switzerland to the Netherlands or the other way around, depending on which way you want to go. This is with our friends. I’m a waterways that’s who Disney has chosen to partner with.
It’s an amazing, river cruise company, impeccably high level of service. And when Disney, essentially rents out these full ships for their ABDS, all of that staff, all of that level of service stays. So you not only get the Disney difference, you get the AmaWaterways level of experience. So let’s talk about this.
You are going to four different locations, four different countries. This is an eight day, seven night cruise. You would, fly into basil, Switzerland. Or you would fly into Amsterdam and then you would switch depending on if you go the other way.
It includes 20 meals, seven breakfast, six lunches, seven dinners.
Let’s go through the itinerary.
The first thing you do is you get to the ship on the first day, have a wine and cheese welcome reception followed by a captain’s welcome cocktail and dinner.
The second day you were in Strasbourg, France. And one of the things that I like about these river cruises that are a little different than the other adventures by Disney itineraries is you actually get to pick which excursions you want to do.
There are some different options here. So for instance, you have the option of touring, the black forest, taking a toboggan run and visiting a woodworking museum. Or you can tour the black forest, go zip lining and take a leisurely hike on to the Triburg waterfalls. Or you can enjoy an excursion to recognize. And that’s a small village in France where you’re going to be able to stroll through, get a guided tour, things like that. You have lunch during your excursion, and then you have dinner on the ship. And again, one of the reasons why river cruising works so well is your restaurant, your hotel travels with you.
The third day you’re again in Strasbourg, France, and you can do things like take a canoe trip down the all space. You can take a canal boat tour visiting the cathedral to Notre Dom. You have lunch on this. And then in the afternoon you can go to the wine caves or you can stay on board and work with the pastry chef there and learn how to make macarons.
Shayne: Have you ever tried to make macarons?
Ryan: They have been made quite successfully in my house, but I am not a baker. So, people, people in my family loved to make them. And when it’s baking time, I get out of the.
Shayne: Yeah, it’s what am I? One of my favorite desserts and the girls have done quite well and
Shayne: the Macron.
Ryan: absolutely day four. You’re in Mannheim, Germany, and after breakfast, breakfast is on the ship, you’re going to tour Heidelberg and the famous Heidelberg Castle. So you’ll visit Heidelberg Castle with a costume guide. Tell you the fascinating history of this fortress at a home of royalty built in 16, 14, and considered an important Renaissance.
You’ll take a walking tour through Heidelberg Germany’s oldest and most renowned university town. And then in the afternoon, you can spend time on your own and Heidelberg exploring the buildings, exploring the shops, walking along the waterfront. If you don’t want to do that in the afternoon, you can go back to the ship for lunch.
Relax on this. The fifth day then is in RÃ¼desheim, Germany. And this is where you’re going to have options like visiting Siegfried mechanical music cabinet museum, which contains one of the largest collections of beautiful mechanical musical boxes, giant pianos, and other automated instruments dating back to the 18th to the 20th century.
In the morning, you can also take a bike ride, around RÃ¼desheim, or you can take the time to visit on your own tour around, and there’s a coffee and hot chocolate tasting. You can take a gondola ride up to, the neater Wald monument.
So there’s lots of different things that you can do.
Shayne: You know, walking amongst and through these centuries old. Buildings it’s the houses, the stores or the churches or the museums, it, I don’t even know how to describe
Ryan: it’s just,
it’s it’s good for the
soul. It’s good for the soul.
Shayne: it’s kind of it’s grounding, but it’s also astounding the fact
Shayne: through this place that’s been there for so long, and then just the differences of what you’re going to see versus what you see every day.
Shayne: an amazing experience.
Ryan: And then this is, to me, this is a classic Adventures by Disney day. Okay. So you’ve got breakfast on the ship, then you choose one of those options. Either the bike ride or the two were on your own with these things the chocolate and coffee tasting the gondola ride. Then you go back to the.
You have lunch and then the afternoon you flip. So whatever you didn’t do in the morning, you do in the afternoon and then wait chain this day is not over. You can also do a wine tasting, enjoy wine, tasting a by pretzels at Weingut Adolf StÃ¶rze l inside the Boston Heimer Hoff’s seller. And then in the afternoon, you get back on board and listen to this.
As part of your cruising before dinner, you’re going to do an iconic castle cruise through the Rhine Gorge, behold 30 castles and all their magnificence sail through the Rhine Gorge with the ships cruise manager, commenting on the Castle’s fascinating history and offering insights about the. Declared and Unesco World Site, the beautiful Upper middle rhine valley along the shoreline is splendid to behold.
Also while you’re there, while you’re doing that, you can participate in a coffee demonstration to learn about the specific coffee of the region. Does that not sound like an awesome way to spend an afternoon?.
Shayne: I can handle that.
Ryan: Absolutely. So day six, you’re in Cologne, Germany, and you have several different options here. You have a full day where if you wish you can go to an indoor winter, Where there is a quiet outdoor climbing park.
You can sled, you can go tubing or you can choose, several half-day activities. There is a cologne walking tour, leisure visit of cologne, cathedral, and a fragrance museum. Or you could do the cologne, walking tour, a leisure visit of Columbia cathedral, and a chocolate museum, or if you’re of age and you and you so care to there’s a Cologne pub tour,
Shayne: I have to ask, does the chocolate museum, including. Tasting
Ryan: my guess is they do. You learn about the history and culture of chocolate on a self guided tour of the chocolate museum at your leisure. You’ll enjoy some amazing chocolate as well as create your own chocolate bar.
Ryan: Very fun.
Shayne: going to have a hard time between the chocolate museum
Ryan: Absolutely. And so in the afternoon, you get to take a break and enjoy a beer with sausages and pretzels.
As your adventure guide tells you about what lies ahead. When you disembark tomorrow morning and Amsterdam that evening, then you’ll have the captain’s farewell cocktail party and dinner on board the ship. the seventh day, then you are in Amsterdam. And you have several different activities. You can visit the, Rijksmuseum.
You can take a Amsterdam canal cruise. You can visit the Rembrandt house museum with an optional etching activity. You can visit the Van Gogh museum. So lots of different things to choose from after lunch. Then you have another few choices of. Things to do. You can visit the countryside on the way to Volendam, which is located just outside of Amsterdam with his beautiful Harbor to old fishing boats and residents who still wear traditional clothing.
Or you can see the sites in Zaanse Schans. Take in the community of Zaanse Schans, located amidst a meadow landscape and appearing as if it’s straight out of a children’s storybook You actually get to decorate some clogs and see a cheese making demonstration, have dinner on the ship and then your last morning is a departure morning.
So you can either depart to the place that you’re staying in Amsterdam or other points in Europe, or you can head to the airport by goodness. Shayne does that not sound like an amazing.
Shayne: It sounds like So much fun. Sometimes I know right away, like, okay. I would make that I would pick that for when there’s an options, but sometimes I don’t even know how I would decide to do.
Ryan: So a few weeks ago, we talked about Christmas market cruises. And just so you know, Adventures by Disney does partner with AmaWaterways to offer river cruising and Christmas Market cruising up the Rhine river.
So several different options there. Let’s talk about pricing for a trip like this. If I look at this coming summer. So if I look at. July 21st, 2022 to July 28th, 2022 for adults. The pricing is. $5,549. And for kids, it’s just over 5,000 at 5,000, $19. So again, as we’ve talked about not inexpensive trips, but my goodness, how much are you getting done as far as bucket list places to see as far as luxury.
Shayne: we talk about the hassle free vacation. If you really think about when you’re on a vacation and in a given day, you’re getting up from your hotel and you’re, hopefully you’ve got a reservation made for where you’re going to have lunch or maybe breakfast depending on where you are and how crowded it is.
going to have to. Concern yourself with how are you going to get to these places? Are you going to walk to cab, public transportation or Uber? And if you have tickets for a show, you will have had to plan the show and bought the tickets. And now you’ll be checking to see what time do you have to leave and how are you going to get to the show from wherever you are?
assuming that you’re in one place and that carrying your luggage from, from
Shayne: location you talk about hassle free with these trips. You don’t have to worry about any of that stuff that that is all taken care of and included.
Ryan: Yeah. So Shayne, I want to hear, you’re going to talk about a special type of cruise, for the Danube
Shayne: Yeah. So by Disney does have a day new river cruise on which they partnered with AmaWaterways but I’m going to specifically tackle this October Fest
Shayne: This is also an eight day cruise, seven nights. It includes 20 meals, which will be seven breakfast, says six lunches and seven dinners. And we’ll include 19 sites.
Shayne: Yeah. In four different countries, Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary.
Ryan: Very cool.
Shayne: Like most of these river trips, you can take it from east to west or west to east.
And I’m going to describe the east going trip, which will start in Vilshoven Germany. And the first day you arrive, you’ll have dinner on the ship. After, dinner, you’ll have an Oktoberfestinspired welcome with food, drink and local entertainment from
Ryan: I always love it. When dinner is followed up by a party with more food.
Shayne: more and more drinks. That’s You can’t beat that really. Day two is in. Germany. in the morning after breakfast on the ship, you take a walking tour of Passau. Have some lunch on this. And then this sounds really fun for after lunch among the tree path Kopf ing, which is a set of tree top ropes bridges
Ryan: Very cool.
There’s 41 towers built in the trees and you’re walking among the trees with great views Alps and probably great views of Passau just probably a pretty thrilling, If not a little bit scary adventure.
then after that, you’re on your own to explore Passau, and when we say on your own, of course, you’re going to have guys to give you advice on what you might enjoy,
Ryan: Right, right. Yep. Yeah. Hey, we want to get this type of souvenir. We’re interested in this type of bar. They’re going to say, Hey, this is where you need.
Shayne: And then dinner aboard the ship. And then regular Danube river, trip with Adventures by Disney there’d be a junior adventure movie night, but the Oktoberfest version there’s a beer tasting onboard the ship with a beer menu provided by local breweries for dinner.
Ryan: Very good.
Shayne: trouble saying the word brewery for
Ryan: That may, that maybe I should have designed you the Oktoberfest cruise to, to discuss.
Shayne: There’ll be a lot of practice that’s for sure. Day three is in Linz, We’re at breakfast on the trip. You get some day tours of Salzburg. This sounds particularly exciting to me being big fans of the sound of music,
Ryan: Oh yeah.
Shayne: the Mirabell Gardens. And then I guess some of the other places that you see in the movies, and I think it’s required that you have to dance around and sing the songs.
Maybe they’re going to film that while I think as part of the trip that you
have to do
Ryan: think so. Yes.
Shayne: at least it, it should be. And then there’s a couple of that you have, you can visit Mondsee, which is some more sites from the sound of music, or you can explore the Salt Mines of Hallein
Shayne: this, I thought, really, you want to just go and use the big quarry and it’s and full of salt, but no, that’s not what it is.
Ryan: I’ve heard about this excursion. This sounds really cool.
Shayne: yeah. Ride underground with these magnificent blues and all these incredible colors. It’s probably a breathtaking site. Then you get dinner on board, the ship. And as part of the Oktoberfest cruise, you get a tour of the HofbrÃ¤u Kaltenhausen, which is Salzberg’s oldest brewery.
been brewing since 1475.
Ryan: Very cool,
Shayne: 550 years. I bet. I bet they’ve got beer making down
Ryan: but they know a thing or two. Yeah, absolutely. I love it.
Shayne: Day Four is in Melk, Austria, where after breakfast on the ship, you get to explore the Melk Benedictine Abbey, and then some cultural activities around the Danube river. And then a tour of the countryside where the bike ride from Krems to Melk is an optional part of that trips. If you’d like to take this four hour bike ride, which just seems like so much fun to me, just a leisurely bike stroller. Down the Danube, seeing all these ancient buildings and structures, that just sounds fantastic.
Lunch onboard the ship. And then a few more options for your afternoon activity. You get the choice of a, a tour of DÃ¼rnstein a hike to the castle, B a bike along the day, nude river from Krems to DÃ¼rnstein I don’t know that I would do the morning. And the afternoon bike ride, but I’m pretty sure I would pick one of them
Ryan: But, you know, then you could have a couple extra Oktoberfest beers in the evening.
Shayne: To replenish some of the calories you burn during the day. That sounds like a good plan or the third option is to experience a family run apricots. Where you could taste the apricots. Some of the other foods they make there along with some wines for the adults. If it wasn’t the Oktoberfest version of this cruiser, it’d be juice for the kids and a tour of the vineyards.
And you would get to take home a jar of the apricot marmalade to enjoy with your beer at night.
Ryan: You know, that’s what I’m saying. That sounds like a tour right at my.
Shayne: Then after dinner onboard the ship, you’re on your own and Krems and as part of the Octoberfest cruise, you get a walking gourmet tour of Krems where you get to enjoy some regional delicacies, including some local food and beer and wine. And I assume they get it from this family farm.
Some apricots Brandy
and some liquors from the Wachau Valley distillery day five, Vienna, Austria to breakfast, onboard the ship, enjoy it. Panoramic tour of Vienna, the motorcoach, and then a tour of the historic SchÃ¶nbrunn palace, which I think we mentioned, this is one of the sites of the Christmas markets.
Back on the Christmas market episode, you get a guided tour. Of the palace. then you get to explore the gardens included in the gardens, they’ve got amaze and a labyrinth of, hedges and then a visit inside the palace. You get a private marionette show there, I guess, to add a little more of that sound of music vibe, to enjoy some strudel making while you’re at the SchÃ¶nbrunn palace. And hopefully you get to eat your strudel after you
Ryan: I would say that you would probably need the product.
Shayne: And then as lunchtime, that’s all, all of that’s before lunch, which you have on your own in Vienna, or you can have lunch aboard. And then on the afternoon, there’s another few options which include another bike ride to the Klosterneuburg Abby, or you can spend time on your own in Vienna. As much as I like riding a bike, I think I would just enjoy some leisurely strolling through
Ryan: you know, there’s nothing wrong with finding a square. With a nice coffee shop and sitting down and relaxing and taking in the sights and the sounds of a European city for awhile.
Shayne: That sounds like that would be a great afternoon
Ryan: take a book with you. Catch up on your emails. Just soak it all. Soak it all in.
Shayne: And then dinner aboard the ship after which, if you’re on this October, best cruise, you get to visit a traditional wine house and snack on some of the foods, cheeses and breads, and they’ll have live music from some local performers. And I’m pretty sure they might be serving some beer at this
Ryan: it’s a
Shayne: establishment. Day six is in Bratislava Slovakia after breakfast on board, the ship, you have two options of how to spend your day option a is in Bratislava, Slovakia and option B is in Vienna. So if you’re going to hang out in Bratislava for the day there’s the excursion there, walking to her broadest lava lunch at Schloss Hoff, which is a restaurant on a manner farm, which features indoor seating or outdoor seating.
And they, you get to explore the Schloss. If you opt for the Vienna visit, you have some time on your own in Vienna, Austria, then lunch. And after that more on your own time in Vienna, Austria again.
The guide will tell you exactly where you should go based on your interests. And some of that would be the homes of Mozart, Beethoven, and even Sigmund Freud.
Ryan: Very cool.
Shayne: And then after that is dinner onboard the ship. Part of the Oktoberfest cruise, while you’re at Schloss Hoff, there’s also some beer tasting outdoors in what they call the Paradise Garden. As part of that, Bratislava option
day seven is in Budapest. You have two options for the day?
One option visit the Budapest Central Market Hall. And then the Lazar Equestrian Park, where you get to watch some Hungarian Cowboys, train the horses and watch some of their tricks, and also have lunch at the equestrian park and then the panoramic city tour of Budapest.
And the second option for day seven is a Budapest walking tour with lunch on board, the ship after. And then some the afternoon on your own and Budapest at the end of the night, you have a dinner on board, the ship with a farewell toast from the captain. The last day, which is in Budapest, Hungary, after breakfast onboard the ship, you could either book a post cruise excursion or. The airport for your flight back home,
Ryan: Man, It sounds amazing,
Shayne: at a particular date for this one because it’s October fOktoberfestly during that time of year and only one of these were 2022 is not sold out yet. And that is the September 18th through 25th trip.
And then a room for two guests. If you want a room with a fixed windows, which I don’t think I would recommend that runs ya $5,879 per person, and a room with a French balcony, which has the full window. In addition to a balcony runs $6,749 for person.
Ryan: Sounds great. I think both of these itineraries sound pretty amazing to me.
Shayne: Yeah. Like I said, in the beginning, a very efficient way to spend your travel time and your travel dollars.
Ryan: Yeah. Yeah. And for two beer lovers, like us lovers, I mean, what a cool trip to just soak it all in and literally, and figuratively
Ryan: when it comes to the food and the, and the beer and the alcohol and the culture of that region. I just, I absolutely.
Shayne: And as much as I enjoy a nice bike ride, I think I would probably enjoy a lot more soaking in a little less pedaling on either of these.
Ryan: What do you think about these river cruises folks? Does this sound like the type of adventures by Disney vacation that you would want to take? If so, we would love to help you plan an amazing ABD vacation. out to us at R Y A N at CreatingMagicVacations.com S H A Y N E at CreatingMagicVacations.com and remember, it’s our job to help make you the river cruise vacation planning, superhero.