Celebrating the Holidays on the Danube

A Danube Cruise at Christmas

Happy Holidays! Mr. TWS and I wish you all the best as you celebrate your holiday traditions and look forward to a brand new year. We have a tradition of kicking off the season with a trip to someplace wonderful and festive. This year, we cruised on the Danube River through Germany, Austria, and Hungary with Viking River Cruises on their “Romantic Danube” itinerary. There’s much more to share about the cruise and the places we visited, but let’s start with a selection of 10 of our Instagram highlights of the trip.

10 Holiday Photos on Instagram

Christmas Market prettiness

I was really impressed with the quality of the ornaments at the Christmas Market in Nuremberg, Germany. It was a very pretty market and we were lucky that it started snowing while we were there — perfect for the Christmas spirit. Gorgeous ornaments at the Nuremberg Christmas Market in 2017

Chilly scenes of winter

I loved the views of Nuremberg taken from the Imperial Castle. This is one of my favorite photos from there. It’s a chilly, but beautiful scene!

View of snowy Nuremberg from the Imperial Castle


There are just a few of the special varieties of traditional gingerbread cookies of Nuremberg, Germany. We saw lots of these tempting treats as we strolled around the Christmas Market. Of course, we sampled some, too.

There are many varieties of gingerbread at the Nuremberg Christmas Market

Chocolate surprise

And gingerbread isn’t the only tasty thing we found at the Christmas Markets. Can you believe these tools are made of chocolate? They’re delicious, too.

Chocolate takes on the forms of tools at a Christmas market booth in Nuremberg, Germany

Silver Bells

… “as the shoppers rush home with their treasures” — (from “Silver Bells”) Silver Bell decorations hang across a busy shopping street in romantic Vienna, Austria. I wonder what’s in those red shopping bags. Don’t you?

Shoppers on a busy street in Vienna, Austria

Now that’s an ornament!

Vienna was decked out for the Christmas holidays with decorations and lights all over the city center. This giant red ball looks suspended in midair in front of one of Vienna’s many elegant buildings.
Giant red ornament suspended over a busy Vienna street for the Christmas season

St. Stephen’s Cathedral is a dramatic background for the Christmas Market in Passau, Germany. I loved Passau — it’s history, architecture, picturesque location on the Danube, old world ambiance, and this wonderful market.

Stunning setting

St. Stephen's Cathedral towers over the Christmas Market of Passau, Germany

The amazing pipe organ of Passau

Imagine listening to the powerful tones of this organ during a Christmas service. When we visited St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Passau, we got to hear someone doing a tune-up on Europe’s largest pipe organ (and world’s largest cathedral organ) — quite impressive.

Organ at St. Stephen's Cathedral in Passau, Germany

I love Budapest

This was our third time in Budapest and second during the Christmas season. Vörösmarty Square’s Christmas Market was bustling with locals and tourists. I love this city any time of year.

Christmas Market at Vorosmarty Square in Budapest, Hungary 2017

Sparkling illuminations

Sparkling Christmas tree and other decorations light up this shopping street in Budapest. I love the glittering umbrella, gift box, and shopping bag illuminations suspended over the street.

Sparkling Christmas tree and other decorations on street in Budapest, Hungary

Stay tuned for more  about our time cruising the Danube on the Viking Gullveig and our daily shore excursions.

Merry Christmas from the TWS duo!

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9 thoughts on “Celebrating the Holidays on the Danube

  1. Tom Bartel

    Cookies, sausage, warmed wine and those cinnamon chimney cakes in Budapest. So many tasty memories you brought back here. I love Europe the most at Christmas time. Fewer tourists and a genuinely local festive atmosphere that’s hard to duplicate anywhere else.

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