The Danube flows from the Black Forest in Germany to the Black Sea in Romania passing through or between Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia, Croatia, Bulgaria and Romania.
The most popular itineraries are one week sailings of around 130 miles from Porto to Vegade Terron on the border with Spain. However there are also one week cruises on the lower Danube and longer itineraries that take passengers from Romania to Nuremberg or all the way to Amsterdam.
The jewels in this itinerary include Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest. For Vienna most itineraries stay overnight which enables tours either included or optional to a Mozart and Strauss concert at one of the cities palaces. A drive around Viennas Ringstrasse, where the city walls used to stand is fabulous by day, but better at night when the palaces, opera house and parliament are lit up.
The capital, Bratislava, is a 5 minute walk from the Old Town where the vessels dock and Budapest which was once two cities, hilly Buda and flat Pest, divided by a river that was united in 1873. Fishermans Bastion in Buda offers tremendous views over the city.
The Main Danube Canal opened in 1992 and connects the main river to the Danube by lifting boats over the Frankish Alb Mountains by means of 16 locks. The river canal flows past some of the Germany's prettiest and most historical cities including Bamberg, Wurzburg and Nuremburg.
The Lower Danube transits Iron Gate Gorge, which divides the Balkan and Carpathian Mountains and narrows at just 150 metres at one point. Itineraries generally start in Bucharest.