Blue Water Holidays
Blue Water Holidays - ABTA - ATOL - CLIA
Experts in River and Small Ship Cruising Holidays since 2002
01756 706500 +44 1756 706500
Blue Water Holidays - ABTA - ATOL - CLIA
01756 706500
+44 1756 706500
Rhine to Danube River Cruises

Rhine to Danube via the Main-Danube Canal

Journey across Europe from Amsterdam to Budapest, on the Rhine and through the Main-Danube Canal to the Danube.

Follow the River Main and the Main-Danube Canal which connects the Rhine to the Danube, with our comprehensive collection of 2-week voyages from Holland, through Germany and Austria to Hungary. Shorter routes explore sections of the Main and Main-Danube Canal, from the Rhine or Danube.

Cruise Collection 2019 / 2020 / 2021

About Rhine to River Danube Cruises

The Main River flows from the Rhine at Mainz, twisting and turning through vineyards, wine villages and ancient towns rich in medieval architecture. From Miltenberg with its ancient market place the Main reaches Wurzburg. Here the Prince-Bishop’s Residenz, a UNESCO World Monument, features the largest ceiling fresco in the world.

Bamberg on the Main is an architectural gem, its Old Town Hall decorated with lavish frescos. This marks the start of the Main-Danube Canal, winding 106 miles through rural Bavaria linking the Main with the River Danube at Kelheim. Only completed in 1992, the Canal includes 16 locks that rise to a height of 1330 feet near Nuremberg, the highest point of any commercial waterway in Europe.

Explore Nuremberg’s 13th century city walls, complete with moats, watchtowers and gateways. From Nuremberg the Canal continues to meet the River Danube, which flows on to Passau, Vienna and Budapest, and eventually the Black Sea.

Elevations of the Main-Danube Canal

Rhine to River Danube Highlights

Bamberg (Germany)

The wonderfully-preserved city of Bamberg has a four-steepled cathedral and half-timbered houses edge the winding lanes, contrasting with the vast 'New Residence' which was the seat of the prince-bishops and has a delightful Rose Garden. The old Town Hall can be found on the Island City in the River Regnitz, along with Little Venice - an area of brightly-painted fishermen's houses. A visit to a traditional Bamberg Beer Haus is an opportunity to taste the locally brewed smoky-tasting beer, Rauchbier.



The skyscrapers on Frankfurt's skyline reflect the city's importance as a centre of finance in Europe. The Romer is an old patrician residence which now houses the Town Hall, and there are several public gardens including the baroque Bolongarogarden and the Nizza.

Frankfurt (Germany)

Heidelberg (Germany)

Heidelberg is a beautiful city where visits usually include Germany's oldest university and the picturesque ruins of Heidelberg Castle, from where there are wonderful views of the Neckar River valley. The Altstadt is the charming old town, district, and a funicular can be taken to the top of the Konigstuhl Mountain.


Mainz (Germany)

Leafy Mainz offers two fascinating highlights. Mainz was the birthplace of Johann Gutenberg, and the city's Printing Museum exhibits the first two copies made of his famous Bible. In St Stephans' church there are wonderful, vivid blue stained-glass windows created by the great 20th century artist, Marc Chagall.


Miltenberg (Germany)

Miltenberg has rows of richly-timbered houses huddled together on the town's narrow streets and squares. It is well-known for the Crooked House, Main Castle and the Royal Inn, which has been in continuous use as an hotel since the 15th century. The area around Miltenburg is renowned for glass-blowing. Close by is 18th-century Schloss Kleinheubach, a magnificent castle with lovely grounds.


Nuremberg (Germany)

The medieval city of Nuremberg was the site of the War Crimes Tribunal at the Justice Palace. Other World War II sites include the Court House and the Nazi rally grounds at the Zeppelin Fields. The old city is surrounded by 900-year old ramparts which enclose Albrecht Durer's house, the Hesperides Gardens and the Market Square with its fountain. Rulers of the Holy Roman Empire resided at Nuremburg Castle, which includes the Kaiserburg Fortress.


Wertheim (Germany)

Wertheim is a quaint village located on the confluence at the Tauber and Main rivers, near Frankfurt in South West Germany. It has maintained its character of an old, small Franconian town with its medieval alleways, half-timbered houses and imposing castle ruins.


Wurzburg (Germany)

The magnificent Bishop's Residenz in Wurzberg is one of Germany's largest and most ornate Baroque palaces. It houses paintings by Tiepelo and the famed Residenz Wine Cellar, sometimes open for tastings of Franconian wine and is said to have the most beautiful staircase in existence. Tours along the 'Romantic Road' through the Bavarian Alps to Rothenburg are often available. This medieval walled town has a glorious rural setting, gothic churches and gabled buildings, and the Puppen and Spielzeug Museum of dolls, dollhouses and miniature trains.


Customer Reviews

We can highly recommend this cruise the organisation was superb with every detail dealt with .The places we visited had so much to see but the guides managed to help us see the major sights and give us information as we walked .For those with walking problems there was a small bus to help their transport needs .We particularly liked the open dining with no fixed seating ,so we were able to meet many interesting people,and make new friends. The staff on the boat were efficient and friendly and the cleanliness was outstanding .The food was excellent and they dealt with dietary needs well..I will send a photo separately

I am still in overload after being away for 6 weeks including the Splendours of Europe cruise. However, the combination of blue Water Holidays and the Emerald Dawn was faultless. Possibly the best holiday experience of my life. Everyone went beyond what I would have expected. The service and friendliness of the Emerald Dawn was so genuine. A perfect holiday made so be an awesome ship and wonderful people.

It was the first River Cruise we had booked after many ocean cruises and our opinion is that it was a most enjoyable, if not exhausting, experience.

We were met at the airport and coached to the ship in Amsterdam with the evening to explore the local area. Throughout our voyage we were kept well informed of anything by the very skilled Cruise Director, Roland, who also assisted so many passengers with a myriad of problems and questions. The passengers thought very highly of him with just cause.

The journey went smoothly from beginning to end and we enjoyed seeing all the varied scenery and exploring the towns and cities along the way. It was good to have included excursions in the price even if they were early morning starts. We were not disappointed with the venues.

Our Owners Suite was well appointed and looked after extremely well by the ever cheerful Hemli. We appreciated the welcome champagne and basket of fruit on arrival and the necessary bottles of water throughout the voyage.

The food and service throughout was second to none and the dining room staff were very generous with the beer and wine.

Departure procedures went smoothly and efficiently.

Overall we would recommend Blue Water Holidays.

Total Reviews: 6 Read More Reviews...