A lesser-known, much-less-cruised river although it’s the fourth largest on the European continent, the Elbe River affords lovely scenery and abundant cultural experiences in the former East Germany and the Czech Republic. According to Travel Weekly, cruising is exploding in popularity on the Rhine and the Danube, making an Elbe cruise a good choice for travelers who favor a less crowded route.
- indoor/outdoor Aquavit terrace
- sleek Scandinavian design style
- restaurant, bar and observation lounge
- gift shop
- sun deck
- After exploring Prague on a guided walk and on your own, cruise through Porta Bohemia before arriving at the pretty town of Litoměřice in the Czech Republic.
- See St. Stephen’s Cathedral, historic Market Square and architecture from the baroque, Renaissance and Gothic periods.
- Cruise through the soaring rock formations of the Saxon Switzerland region, then dock at the spa town of Bad Schandau.
- See the Bastei rock tower.
- In Dresden, take a guided drive through the 19th-century residential area to the Dresden Castle to see Saxon monarchs’ crown jewels, and the Zwinger Palace, Semper Opera House, Frauenkirche.
- Ramble around Dresden or join a master chefs on a trip to the local marketplace.
- In Meissen, tour the Meissenware factory and museum and tour Old Town.
- Torgau’s Renaissance houses, Hartenfels Castle, and the “Elbe Day” monument where Russian and American troops shook hands in 1945.
- Wittenberg, birthplace of the Reformation. Follow in Martin Luther’s footsteps to Luther’s House, St. Marien’s Church, Castle Church where Luther posted his “95 Theses.”
- Wander the English-style gardens in Wörlitz and tour Wörlitz Castle in Dessau.
- In Potsdam, the rococo Sanssouci Palace built by Prussian king Frederick the Great.
- Arrive in Berlin and depart or stay on to see the city.
- 10 days from $2,599 per person
The Elbe not your cup of tea? Look here for the London Telegraph’s description of best river cruises.
More river cruise news: Viking will launch six new vessels on the Mississippi River starting in 2017!