Mangia, Mangia on <i>Costa Smeralda</i>

Mangia, Mangia on Costa Smeralda

Steve Leland - October 28, 2021

Christmas Markets Cruises

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’Tis the Season

Indulge your holiday senses on a Christmas markets cruise.

By Jodi Ornstein

So there we were. My mom and I.  Escaping the heat of Miami bound for Europe to get our Christmas on.

It’s not that eating potato latkes in 90-degree weather isn’t festive, or that white lights strung on rows of palm trees aren’t beautiful. And I guess a hurricane day is somewhat akin to a much-loved snow day. But holiday time in Florida definitely lacks that quintessential feeling that we’d been craving since our days of living in the Northeast.

So we set off to discover those picture-perfect storybook scenes and take in all the sights, sounds, and smells of the holiday season aboard a Christmas markets river cruise smack dab during the week of Christmas.

Danube River Cruise

We boarded our Danube River cruise in Budapest, greeted in the lobby by a decorated Christmas tree and garland hung along the stairs. Viking River Cruises’ Viking Hlin, one of the line’s 45 popular Longships, would depart the following morning for Nuremberg, calling on Vienna, Melk, Passau, and Regensburg along the way.

Throughout the week we found plates of Christmas chocolates and cookies in our stateroom, special holiday meals in the dining room, and a special Christmas Eve reading by “Santa” and his elves, which reminded us that, indeed, Christmas was upon us.

This is an excerpt only. Pick up an issue of Porthole Cruise Magazine, or check out our digital edition.

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