Posted on 01/07/2020
I sailed on the Danube on one of the Avalon Waterways Active & Discovery itineraries. These cruises are for guests who want to do and not just see and offer a wide variety of included-excursions that enable passengers to be active and fully engaged with the local cultures.
I want to highlight some of my favorite excursions and, in the process, show what makes Avalon so unique and definitely a lot of fun to experience.
Budapest Retro Tour
The idea of exploring Budapest’s Communist past all while driving around in a vintage Trabant sounded like the perfect mix of active and historical immersion. Our guide spent the afternoon taking us to a variety of different spots around Budapest, all the while sharing not just the history of the Communist era, but his own personal experiences as well.
Wachau Valley Biking
This picturesque region of Austria is famous around the world for any number of reasons, but especially for its wine and the incredible outdoor activities available to visitors. Stopping in Krems, Austria, our group left the Impression and joined our affable guides for a day out and about exploring Austria’s wine country. Throughout the afternoon we stopped at small towns and wine estates, learning more about the history of the region as we got our exercise for the day.
Morning in Vienna
Met by our local guide, he showed us around his city as it slowly began to wake up, giving us a unique perspective of Vienna before it got too crowded. With perfect morning light, I loved learning about the guide’s favorite parts of town, what he thinks about the city and more. After a classic Austrian breakfast at a local coffee shop, we then visited the Habsburg Museum before it opened to the general public. There we enjoyed a private tour of the collection, learning about the various artworks and unique objects and enjoying the special opportunity for what it was.
I’ve spent a fair amount of time sailing the rivers of Europe, but so far none of my experiences were quite like the week I spent with Avalon. Their Active & Discovery itineraries are well planned, active, immersive and fun. It was the ideal mix of experiences, ones that I got to choose myself and, in the process, they created a trip that so far is one of my all-time favorites.