With Avalon Waterways' exclusive and diverse selection of themed river cruises, you can enjoy a luxury river cruise holiday to some of Europe's best destinations – and indulge your passions at no additional cost. If you have a special interest in wine, jazz or classical music, fine art, history and politics, or Jewish heritage, our specially packaged, limited-edition themed cruises are the perfect way of capturing the true essence and culture of a European destination. Enhance your personal knowledge with expert on board presentations and enjoy unique travel opportunities to share your interests with like-minded passengers.
Christmas Market & Festive Cruises
Christmastime in Europe is an enchanting experience. Spectacular architecture is adorned with festive decor, cheerful twinkling lights illuminate cobbled streets, and tranquil town squares come alive with picturebook Christmas Markets. Marvel at this and more aboard a Christmas Markets cruise holiday. Relax in warmth and comfort on board a deluxe river cruise ship as you sail the Danube, Main or Rhine Rivers, stopping en route to explore magnificent Christmas Markets. Admire the spectacle of colourful wooden huts crammed with hand-crafted wooden toys, sparkling baubles, gifts, souvenirs, and plenty of festive arts and crafts. Enjoy the mouth-watering aromas of hot mulled wine, honey-roasted almonds and cinnamon cookies. Indulge in delicious soft gingerbread and tasty spiced biscuits. And perhaps try delicious local specialities such as glühwein, sweet svarene vino or savoury Bratwurst.
Wine Theme River Cruises
Expand your wine appreciation skills on our Wine Theme River Cruises, where an acknowleged wine expert explains how the various and distinct grape varieties are cultivated. Learn how to determine the best wines from the regions you cruise through, taste samples on board, enjoy a gala wine and food pairing dinner, and join an included visit to a local vineyard for wine tasting to test your new-found knowledge.
Jazz Theme River Cruises
Jazz enthusiasts will love our Jazz Theme River Cruises, which take in the exciting atmosphere and a performance at the Jazz Festival in Vienne, an annual event on the world jazz scene. Onboard your Avalon ship, there will be jazz performances and lectures about the history of jazz in France, on shore there's a visit to a local club for a concert and plenty of time to explore the jazz scene at leisure in the various ports of call.
Culinary Theme River Cruises
Expand your culinary appreciation skills on our Culinary Theme River Cruises, where acknowleged chefs and food critics give advice and teach how to determine the best ingredients, dishes and accompaniments from the regions you cruise through, taste samples on board to test your new-found knowledge.
Music Theme River Cruises
Let Avalon Waterways waltz you to a symphony of destinations. Classical music lovers will enjoy our Music Theme River Cruises, on which local experts provide insights into European music. Shore excursions on the way take in a Strauss concert in beautiful Vienna, an organ recital in Melk, and explore Mozart’s hometown of Salzburg, where 'the hills are alive with the sound of music!'.
Art & Impressionist Theme River Cruises
Appreciate art as never before on this special art-focused cruise. In Paris, a local expert guides you through Musée d’Orsay to see its incredible collection of masterpieces. Explore the Château d’Auvers for a voyage to the heart of the paintings by Cezanne, Van Gogh, and Monet. Marvel at Rouen’s lovely cathedral to discover what made this a favourite subject for Monet. Also visit the Musée des Beaux-Arts André Malraux in Le Havre, admire works by artists at Montmartre’s Place du Terte, and attend special on board art lectures from a local art expert.
Jewish Heritage Theme River Cruises
Gain an understanding of how the Jewish culture was formed on this dedicated Jewish Heritage theme river cruise, and explore landmarks, monuments and museums significant to Jewish history. Visit the Jewish Museum and the world's second largest synagogue in Budapest, Jewish Vienna, the Jewish quarter in Regensburg and if available, the ancient synagogue excavations beneath Neupfarrplatz. Explore the Czech Republic with an expert local guide to see Prague's Jewish Museum, Jewish Cemetery, and synagogues, and the haunting former WWII Jewish ghetto of Terezin. (Kosher foods not available).