Rhine-Danube cruise

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Tips & insights
on the Rhine-Danube
combo cruise

What it is

Essentially, it's the combining of Rhine and Danube cruises to create a single North Sea to Black Sea mega-cruise. The Rhine and Danube are connected by two waterways:

Main River
Main-Danube Canal

Full route

It runs about 3,500 kilometers (2,200 miles) from Amsterdam to the Danube Delta at the Black Sea. The full route can be taken in either direction.

Most popular route

It goes from Amsterdam to Budapest, only half way down the Danube. It's the better choice than the full route for most cruisers. Consider the full route's disadvantages:

The full route takes 3 to 4 weeks, which is too long to fit the desires or schedules of most cruisers. In contrast, the popular route lasts 10 or so days.

Viewing riverbanks for several weeks could become monotonous.

And living in a small ship for several weeks could be confining..

The full route spends a lot of time sailing the least interesting part of the Rhine-Danube combo cruise (Budapest to Danube Delta segment). The popular route skips it.

An even shorter cruise

Sail from Amsterdam to Vienna instead of to Budapest. This abbreviated Rhine-Danube combo route has its fans.

Two separate trips

An alternative to Rhine-Danube combo cruise is to take the Rhine and Danube cruises on separate trips. Read my web pages on them:

Rhine River cruise

Danube River cruise


By taking the two cruises individually, you don't have to pass slowly through the 16 locks of the Main-Danube Canal. One or two locks is interesting. More can be time-eating and boringly repetitious.

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