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Gems of Southeast Europe

Voyage Between Budapest and Giurgiu aboard a Premier River Vessel


On the storied Danube River, this wonderful cruise brings you from Budapest, the capital of Hungary, through the dramatic narrow gorge known as the Iron Gates, and then along the Romanian-Bulgarian border. Visit Vidin, Belogradchik and Veliko Tarnovo before disembarking your cruise in Romania. Reverse departures are also offered. Add on an optional pre-cruise extension to Vienna or Budapest (depending on departure), and post-cruise extension to Bucharest.

Note: This cruise is not exclusive to, nor operated by, Wilderness Travel, who acts solely as agent in booking your reservation with the ship operator. The itinerary, lecturers, and all other arrangements are subject to change at the discretion of the cruise line.


Budapest to Giurgiu Itinerary

Day 1
Budapest, Hungary / Embarkation

Embark upon your river cruise ship, docked in the city center. This evening, meet your fellow passengers on board.

Day 2
Mohács / Pécs

Enjoy a scenic morning cruise to Mohács. You'll then visit Pécs, founded more than 2,000 years ago by the Romans. Visit the UNESCO-designated Christian Necropolis; St. Peter’s Basilica, the city’s main Catholic cathedral along with its catacombs; and Széchenyi Square, the heart of Old Town Pécs. You will also see the Mosque of Pasha Qasim the Victorious, one of the symbols of the city. Or for wine connoisseurs, you'll want to go to Szekzard wine region, one of the oldest red-wine-growing areas in Hungary, established more than 2,000 years ago.

Day 3
Vukovar, Croatia / Novi Sad, Serbia

Vukovar is a Croatian symbol of resistance, which you’ll better understand on your city tour showcasing the Ovčara Memorial and Eltz Palace. Alternatively, choose a wine tasting in Ilok, a center of wine production since Roman times, where you'll sample its famous Grasevina, Traminac, and Frankovka wines. Back on board, cruise to Novi Sad, sometimes called the “Serbian Athens.” Discover Novi Sad on a walking tour to Dunavski Park and through Stari Grad, the Old Town center. If you prefer a more active exploration, join a guided biking or hiking tour. During the evening, visit Petrovaradin Fortress, a mighty stronghold no enemy has ever breached.

Day 4
Belgrade, Serbia

Explore Serbia’s capital, Belgrade, on a city tour, which includes the Kalemegdan Fortress and the Serbian Orthodox Temple of St. Sava. Later, choose from three intriguing excursions. Visit the Royal Palace, the official residence of the Serbian Royal Family; and then tour the House of Flowers, the mausoleum of Marshal Tito, who became the first President of Yugoslavia. Or enjoy a taste of the region by sampling Serbian plum brandy, Šlivovitz, and delicious local delights at the Quburich Distillery. For those wishing a more active adventure, join a guided bike tour.

Day 5
Iron Gates

The Iron Gates is one of Europe’s most awe-inspiring natural wonders. The Danube narrows as it winds through a series of magnificent gorges between the Carpathian and Balkan mountains. The banks of the river dazzle with sheer-faced rocks that stretch high overhead along this natural border between Serbia and Romania.

Day 6
Vidin, Bulgaria

Explore Vidin, one of Bulgaria’s oldest cities, and surrounding areas with a choice of excursions. Discover Baba Vida Fortress, the largest preserved medieval castle in Bulgaria overlooking the Danube. Continue on to Belogradchik, one of Bulgaria’s natural wonders, where you can hike around its most spectacular rock formations. Alternatively, visit a local home for a demonstration of traditional Bulgarian yogurt and Banitsa, a pastry you will also get to make. You also have the choice to bike through Vidin and to the castle.

Day 7
Giurgiu / Rousse

Visit Bulgaria's ancient capital, Veliko Tarnovo, with its medieval fortress and multiple orthodox temples. You can opt instead to go to Rousse, known for its 19th- and 20th-century Neo- Baroque and Neo-Rococo architecture, and then afterwards visit the UNESCO-designated Rock-hewn Churches of Ivanovo with frescos revealing exceptional artistry of 14th-century paintings and Bulgarian medieval art.

Day 8
Giurgiu / Disembarkation

Disembark the ship in Giurgiu.

Giurgiu to Budapest Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive in Giurgiu, Romania / Embarkation
Day 2 Giurgiu / Rousse
Day 3 Vidin
Day 4 Cruising through the Iron Gates
Day 5 Belgrade
Day 6 Novi Sad / Vukovar
Day 7 Pécs / Mohács
Day 8 Budapest / Disembarkation


Budapest to Giurgiu
  • Add 2 nights Vienna pre-cruise and 3 nights Istanbul post-cruise: $2099 (2022) per person
  • Add 2 Nights Vienna pre-cruise and 2 nights Brasov, 2 nights Bucharest Post-cruise: $1900 (2022) per person
Giurgiu to Budapest
  • Add 3 nights Istanbul pre-cruise and 2 nights Vienna post-cruise: $2099 (2022) per person
  • Add 2 Nights Bucharest, 2 nights Brasov pre-cruise and 2 nights Vienna post-cruise: $1900 (2022) per person



Enjoy walking tours, optional guided bike tours
Savor delightful cuisine and wines
Optional pre- and post-cruise extensions
Explore the wonders of World Heritage Sites and enchanting cities along the Danube


Length: 8 days
Cost From: TBA  
Arrive: Budapest, Hungary
Depart: Rousse, Bulgaria
Lodging: 7 nights aboard a premium river vessel
Meals: All meals included aboard ship
Activity: River Cruising, Cultural Adventures, Photography
Trip Level:

8-day cruise, cultural explorations and walking tours

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