Cruise the Rhine river with Riviera Travel. Credit: Shutterstock

Top four river cruises with TUI for 2023 – from the Rhine to the Danube

Author: Lucy Abbott

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TUI’s river cruises are known for sailing to a wide range of enthralling destinations in Europe. The Danube and Rhine are ready and waiting for you to discover.

Let’s face it, the days are getting greyer, it’s getting darker earlier, and the weather isn’t looking too good – how about booking a cultural river cruise for 2023 with TUI River Cruises to look forward to? Sounds good right?

What’s more, there are four itineraries to choose from and don’t say we don’t look after you, use the code ‘Save5RC’ save up to an extra 5% per booking in summer 2023 as well as August 2023 - get it while it’s hot.

The itineraries ‘Legends of the Rhine’ and ‘Rhine Gems’ offer you the chance to discover the full beauty of the Rhine whereas the ‘Three Grand Capitals’ and ‘Danube Flavours’ whisk you away to the stunning river Danube.

So, the choice is yours – all that’s left to do is pack your bags and look forward to an adventure.

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Legends of the Rhine

If the Rhine has always been on your bucket list, or even if you have already visited the river before – the ‘Legends of the Rhine’ itinerary is perfect for you.

Visiting big cities like Dusseldorf and Cologne, this itinerary hits all the hotspots as well as the smaller, quaint towns such as Boppard and Rudesheim in Germany to give you a new perspective of the river.

You’ll set sail from Frankfurt, so make sure you don’t miss exploring both the financial district and historical hotspots – be sure to snap a picture of The Romberg area, which was rebuilt to original Medieval plans.

Other highlights of the itinerary include visiting Koblenz’s Ehrenbreitstein Fort, sipping local Riesling in Rudesheim as well as visiting the birthplace of Beethoven in Bonn.

If this sounds like your ideal cruise, then you can get onboard TUI Maya on 4 August 2023 for seven nights, flying from Manchester. Prices start from £1469pp.

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Discover the beautiful cities that sit alongside the Rhine. Credit: Shutterstock

Rhine Gems

Like the name of the itinerary alludes to, this sailing down the Rhine is the perfect combination of the gems of the Rhine across seven nights.

In fact, the stretch of the Rhine you’ll be sailing down is a UNESCO site – lucky you. This all-inclusive ship departs 9 July 2023, with prices starting from £1439p onboard TUI Isla and sweeps you to Frankfurt, Koblenz, Mannheim, Strasbourg, Basel, Breisach, Speyer and back to Frankfurt.

Mannheim brings you an intriguing fusion of modern and medieval with an intense historical background – did you know that Karl Drais introduced the first bike here in 1817?

To get a full taste of the area, embark on the ‘Mannheim Walking Tour with Bertha Benz’ excursion with TUI.

Another standout port of call is Basel, Switzerland, where you can wander around Basel’s 12-century Gothic cathedral as well as the rest of the Medieval old town – a must-do excursion is the Lucerne City Tour, where you can visit an impressive lion carving in a rock face as well as a walking tour of the beautiful Reuss River before crossing a decorated unique bridge.

Budapest. Credit: Shutterstock

Three Grand Capitals

If it’s a short break that you are craving, then hop onboard TUI Skyla for three glorious nights sailing the Danube, hitting three glorious cities.

You’ll fly from Manchester on 23 October 2023 with the first port of Budapest – and what a place to start your river cruise. You can explore both sides of this eclectic city – the east brings you Pest, where you can admire the sizeable parliament buildings and the west offers a staggering 18th-century castle and an abundance of towers.

Your next port of call is Bratislava in Slovakia and observe the change in architectural style as you are welcomed with a fusion of Medieval, Gothic and modern – awaiting your exploration.

A must-see is Bratislava castle, as it is not only impressive in stature, but it also boasts stunning views of rolling hills and the river.

Why not embark on TUI’s ‘Bratislava City Train Tour’ to absorb the culture from one comfy seat?

The last port of call is Vienna, Austria. Baroque architecture, small coffee houses and beautiful palaces sum up this impressive city. Music lovers must embark on the ‘Sound of Vienna: An Evening In Concert’ excursion, where you will learn exactly why Vienna is known as the city of music.

This cruise costs £719pp and sees you whiz through the capitals and take a deep dive into culture and history – a worthy cost in our opinion.

Top four river cruises with TUI for 2023 – from the Rhine to the Danube Cruise Ships
Mozart himself performed at the Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna. Credit: Shutterstock

Danube Flavours

Another way to explore the Danube, this itinerary offers an extra night of discovery. Embark on this four-night cruise on 26 October 2023, from £859pp, to appreciate the Danube in greater depth.

Beginning in Vienna, you won’t know where to start when exploring this stunning city – and luckily for you, you’re here for the evening too. Must-see sights include the 13th-century Hofburg Palace and the abundance of local goods you can pick up such as the indulgent sachertorte chocolate cake.

Like the ‘Three Grand Capitals’ itinerary, you will then call at Bratislava in Slovakia before heading over to Esztergom, Hungary in the morning, where Hungary’s first king was born, and then exploring Budapest in the afternoon.

We know you want to escape on holiday – so what’s holding you back? Go for it with TUI river cruises.

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About Lucy Abbott

Lucy is an experienced cruise journalist, who has sailed on a variety of ships, from expedition to river – with her favourite being expedition cruising.

Lucy reports on what it’s like to be a young cruiser and is interested in new sustainable ways to cruise as well as how cruising is becoming accessible for all.

She works together with Kaye Holland to keep the World of Cruising website up to date with all the latest cruise news.