Uniworld River Beatrice, 4/10/16 Budapest to Passau


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#1
Albany, NY
4,432 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
We are off!

Thursday, April 7

We broke from our usual pattern and actually took the day off from work, so it was a very relaxing day. We slept until after 7:00 and then relaxed all day while finishing our last bits of packing. We tried to go for a walk but it started raining so we cut that short. Headed over to the airport around 2:30 for our flight but took forever to find parking.

At the airport we were very excited to see that the TSA precheck line was actually open! A miracle, and we were through in seconds. We had time to enjoy a snack before boarding, and our flight was a few minutes early. Once at Detroit, we stopped by Vino Volo for a flight and a snack before killing time at the SkyTeam lounge.

We board for Amsterdam soon, then after another layover we'll arrive in Budapest at 4:15 tomorrow. That will make for a long day, but hopefully we'll have the energy to see a few sights before we call it a day.

Here is a picture of our poor kitty, upset by the sight of our suitcases...



And a pre-flight drink at Vino Volo, in the Detroit airport



More to follow... so excited for this trip after a year's wait!
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JP and Chris

Last: Silver Explorer - Along the Humboldt Current, Guayaquil to Valparaíso - Oct 2017 (review)

Future bookings - come join us!
Silver Wind - #2828, Copenhagen to Tower Bridge - Sept 2018
Silver Cloud Expedition - #1918, Reykjavik to Reykjavik - August 2019

Past:
Ganges Voyager II (Uniworld) - India's Golden Triangle & the Sacred Ganges - Feb 2017 (review)
River Beatrice (Uniworld) - Danube - April 2016
(photo review)
SS Catherine (Uniworld) - Burgundy and Provence - March 2015 (review)
Silver Cloud - Eastern Med - Istanbul to Athens - October 2014 (photo review)
Silver Cloud - North Atlantic - Tower Bridge to Reykjavik - August 2014 - (photo review)
SS Antoinette (Uniworld) - Castles on the Rhine - Basel to Amsterdam - April 2014 (photo review)
Silver Explorer - Central America - Colon to Puerto Caldera - October 2013 (photo review)
MS Sun Boat III - Nile River - November 2012 (pics1) (pics2)
Silver Wind - Athens to Rome - June 2012 (report) (Greece pics) (Italy pics)

Celebrity Xpedition - Galapagos - November 2011 (Peru pics) (Galapagos pics)
Silver Explorer - Longyearbyen to Tromso - August 2011 (report) (Svalbard pics) (Tromso pics)
Silver Wind - Cape Town to Cape Town - Feb 2011 (pics)
Silver Cloud - London to Nice - September 2010 (France pics) (Spain and Portugal pics)
Silver Wind - Black Sea - June 2010 (pics)
Silversea PAII - Antarctica - Dec 09 (pics)
#2
Acworth, Georgia
263 Posts
Joined Nov 2013
Safe travels. Enjoy!!!
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Kathy and Bob. Love to cruise!

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#3
Naples, FL
4,585 Posts
Joined Feb 2011
Have a wonderful time on your adventure! Thanks for sharing your words and photos.
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Deirdre
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#4
New York
8,412 Posts
Joined Aug 2011
Here's praying the rest of your trip is as smooth as this part. Enjoy!
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Email me: [email protected]
Blogs: Jazzbeaux Blogs

I am not an employee of Cruise Critic and I don't speak for Cruise Critic. All opinions are mine alone. Also, I'm only a Host on the various River forums -- everywhere else I'm "just plain Jazz."

Booked:
Azamara Quest Costa Rica 1-2018
AMA Discover Africa 5-2018
Viking Sun British Isles Explorer 8-2018
Celebrity Edge Caribbean B2B / Celebrity Equinox Caribbean B2B 1-2019 [will choose one!]

Completed:
Crown Princess Classic Canada & New England 10-2017
Norwegian Pride of America Hawaii 10-2016; Azamara Quest Norwegian Fjords 8-2016; Celebrity Constellation Greek Isles 5-2016; AmaDagio Provence 9-2015; Celebrity Xpedition Galapagos 5-2015; Celebrity Eclipse Southern Carib 3-2015; Fresco Tours A Kinder Camino walking tour 9-2014; Crystal Serenity Mediterranean 5-2014; Coral Princess Panama Canal 1-2014; AmaCello Rhine 8-2013; Coral Princess Alaska 6-2013; Ireland Fly-Drive 9-2012; Norwegian Dawn Caribbean 3-2013 / Celebrity Summit Caribbean 1-2012 / Oceania Insignia Mediterranean 5-2011 / Fair Dinkum (Erie Canal bareboat) 7-2003 / Costa Italia Caribbean 5-1974
#5
1,182 Posts
Joined Apr 2005
Have a fantastic trip! So glad to hear the TSA line was operating. Hope that is the case in 12 days!

Will be looking forward to any updates if you have time to post---or when you get back home.
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I tried to contain myself----but I escaped!!!
#6
Rhine, Germany
2,163 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
Hello jpalbny,

oooh, the poor cat. I remember the times when my family went on holiday... our cat used to jump into the open suitcase and sometimes go to sleep in there. Her form of protest.

Safe travels and have a great time on the Danube.

notamermaid
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Transocean Belvedere Danube April 2013
English Channel Crossings 1984 to present:
Calais - Dover
Ostend - Dover
Dutch island hopping 1980's
Many Rhine river short trips
#7
2 Posts
Joined Mar 2014
Have a great trip. Looking forward to reading your updates.

Maybe we'll cross paths in Passau as we board the River Beatrice for the return trip tip Budapest on the 17th. Thanks for posting your adventures.
#8
Raleigh, NC
54 Posts
Joined Mar 2015
That picture of your kitty looked just like my old girl used to look. I miss her! Anyway, have a great trip! I am excited for your review, they are always fantastic. Nice choice on the Tokaj by the way!
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Danielle
Sailing Uniworld Burgundy/Provence May 2016!

#10
The Third Coast - Nashville
7,890 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
I'll be interested in hearing about you experience and impressions of the itinerary and the River Beatrice. I sailed her on this exact itinerary back in November. Have a wonderful trip.

Roz
#11
Albany, NY
4,432 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
First impressions of Budapest - love it!

Way past our bedtime but our first few hours have been great! Got to our hotel around 6PM and headed right out to the Hospital in the Rock to catch the last tour at 7:00. Very interesting tour, then some wandering around the Castle District for the views. We walked back down the hill to the Four Seasons, enjoying more views of the river from the Chain Bridge.

Tasty dinner at our hotel, along with some delicious Hungarian wine choices. More wines to try to find at home...

Thanks to everyone for your comments; sorry that I am too tired to reply to everyone individually. Hoping to upload a few pictures soon as well, but that won't happen tonight either. Time to call it a night!
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JP and Chris

Last: Silver Explorer - Along the Humboldt Current, Guayaquil to Valparaíso - Oct 2017 (review)

Future bookings - come join us!
Silver Wind - #2828, Copenhagen to Tower Bridge - Sept 2018
Silver Cloud Expedition - #1918, Reykjavik to Reykjavik - August 2019

Past:
Ganges Voyager II (Uniworld) - India's Golden Triangle & the Sacred Ganges - Feb 2017 (review)
River Beatrice (Uniworld) - Danube - April 2016
(photo review)
SS Catherine (Uniworld) - Burgundy and Provence - March 2015 (review)
Silver Cloud - Eastern Med - Istanbul to Athens - October 2014 (photo review)
Silver Cloud - North Atlantic - Tower Bridge to Reykjavik - August 2014 - (photo review)
SS Antoinette (Uniworld) - Castles on the Rhine - Basel to Amsterdam - April 2014 (photo review)
Silver Explorer - Central America - Colon to Puerto Caldera - October 2013 (photo review)
MS Sun Boat III - Nile River - November 2012 (pics1) (pics2)
Silver Wind - Athens to Rome - June 2012 (report) (Greece pics) (Italy pics)

Celebrity Xpedition - Galapagos - November 2011 (Peru pics) (Galapagos pics)
Silver Explorer - Longyearbyen to Tromso - August 2011 (report) (Svalbard pics) (Tromso pics)
Silver Wind - Cape Town to Cape Town - Feb 2011 (pics)
Silver Cloud - London to Nice - September 2010 (France pics) (Spain and Portugal pics)
Silver Wind - Black Sea - June 2010 (pics)
Silversea PAII - Antarctica - Dec 09 (pics)
#12
Naples, FL
4,585 Posts
Joined Feb 2011
Originally posted by jpalbny
First impressions of Budapest - love it!

Way past our bedtime but our first few hours have been great! Got to our hotel around 6PM and headed right out to the Hospital in the Rock to catch the last tour at 7:00. Very interesting tour, then some wandering around the Castle District for the views. We walked back down the hill to the Four Seasons, enjoying more views of the river from the Chain Bridge.

Tasty dinner at our hotel, along with some delicious Hungarian wine choices. More wines to try to find at home...

Thanks to everyone for your comments; sorry that I am too tired to reply to everyone individually. Hoping to upload a few pictures soon as well, but that won't happen tonight either. Time to call it a night!
I am so glad you like Budapest! We did the tour of the Hospital in the Rock as well. I did not know before that how much Budapest suffered during WWII but it was pretty horrific. The sense of history we felt in the city was almost overwhelming. I don't know if you have the time but if you can swing it, the Hungarian National Museum is magnificent. We spent hours there!!! And also, if you like those lovely Herend figurines that now cost a small fortune in the US, Budapest is the place to buy them. The prices are so much lower and they have items not seen here. Oh, how I envy you being in Budapest!!!
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Deirdre
___________________________
Azamara Quest West Indies cruise report here -
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1966387
Azamara Journey Mediterranean cruise report here-
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2103294
Celebrity Solstice Mediterranean cruise report here-
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1676328
#13
Albany, NY
4,432 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
OK, I'm back for a few...it's been a great trip! We finished up in Munich tonight which was as much fun as always. We have been so busy this trip that there has been no time to post at all, which is a good sign I guess. I have taken good notes and Chris has been working hard at organizing pictures so we'll be in good shape to reconstruct the trip once we get home - we leave Munich tomorrow morning.

But for now, back to the start of the trip. I think I left you all hanging after we left Detroit airport on Thursday night, almost two weeks ago!

***

Friday April 8, 2016

For some reason we were both exhausted by the time our flight from Detroit to Amsterdam finally took off – there was a little delay after the gate for deicing but the pilots promised it wouldn’t affect our overall timing. After a glass or two of wine we were pretty much done; we weren’t very hungry so we only ate a little then slept. I made it through the Force Awakens (believe it or not, I hadn't seen it yet) then slept for a few hours.

We were a little more hungry for breakfast, but it’s always hard to eat after a night of airplane sleep, when the sun says it’s morning and your body says it’s way too early!

We touched down in Amsterdam a few minutes early and were at the gate on time at 10:30. After a long slog through the D gates we passed through immigration (no lines at all!) and found the KLM lounge on the Schengen side. We both felt better after a shower and a coffee, then we sipped on a glass of Crémant de Limoux while awaiting our next flight. We really weren’t hungry yet, so didn’t eat any of the lounge food.

We napped a little on the flight to Budapest. A small delay taking off, then the usual issue with the flight being full, no room for bags, etc. They made me gate check my small carryon for no good reason - others with larger carryons were let through - but it made things easier I guess. A strange stacked sandwich on a toothpick for a snack with some tasty South African Sauvignon blanc, and a little more napping, so the flight went by quickly.

We flew over the northern outskirts of Budapest on our final approach, and luckily we were on the right side of the plane. Because of our pre-trip research, I could recognize many of the landmarks! Great to finally see it – looks beautiful! Chris and I enjoyed the preview.

We landed a few minutes after our scheduled 4:15 time but arrived at the gate and were off the plane before 4:30. Luggage delivery was remarkably fast and we were out of baggage claim by 4:50. Picking up our Budapest cards (we had prepurchased on line, with a 5% discount to boot) was a snap and we were out of the airport and on the 200E bus a few minutes before 5.

From here, we changed to the M3 line to center city, and then a few minutes stroll to the hotel – less than 45 minutes total travel time from the airport. We checked in and had an upgrade (Danube River view room) waiting for us. We made a dinner reservation then headed out.

We caught the 16 bus outside our hotel, which went up Castle Hill, and walked over to Hospital on the Rock.



The tour wasn’t for another half an hour (7:00) so we bought our tickets, then wandered back to St. Mathias’ Church.



From here, we went to Fisherman’s Bastion.



There was no one manning the bastion so we climbed up to enjoy the view.



Parliament looks beautiful.



The bastion itself is pretty too.



Back to the Hospital for our tour!
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JP and Chris

Last: Silver Explorer - Along the Humboldt Current, Guayaquil to Valparaíso - Oct 2017 (review)

Future bookings - come join us!
Silver Wind - #2828, Copenhagen to Tower Bridge - Sept 2018
Silver Cloud Expedition - #1918, Reykjavik to Reykjavik - August 2019

Past:
Ganges Voyager II (Uniworld) - India's Golden Triangle & the Sacred Ganges - Feb 2017 (review)
River Beatrice (Uniworld) - Danube - April 2016
(photo review)
SS Catherine (Uniworld) - Burgundy and Provence - March 2015 (review)
Silver Cloud - Eastern Med - Istanbul to Athens - October 2014 (photo review)
Silver Cloud - North Atlantic - Tower Bridge to Reykjavik - August 2014 - (photo review)
SS Antoinette (Uniworld) - Castles on the Rhine - Basel to Amsterdam - April 2014 (photo review)
Silver Explorer - Central America - Colon to Puerto Caldera - October 2013 (photo review)
MS Sun Boat III - Nile River - November 2012 (pics1) (pics2)
Silver Wind - Athens to Rome - June 2012 (report) (Greece pics) (Italy pics)

Celebrity Xpedition - Galapagos - November 2011 (Peru pics) (Galapagos pics)
Silver Explorer - Longyearbyen to Tromso - August 2011 (report) (Svalbard pics) (Tromso pics)
Silver Wind - Cape Town to Cape Town - Feb 2011 (pics)
Silver Cloud - London to Nice - September 2010 (France pics) (Spain and Portugal pics)
Silver Wind - Black Sea - June 2010 (pics)
Silversea PAII - Antarctica - Dec 09 (pics)
#14
Albany, NY
4,432 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
One last shot from Fisherman's Bastion before our tour...



And one more...then really - we have to get back for the tour!



The tour of the underground hospital was both interesting and frightening. The conditions that the doctors and nurses endured to try to save patients who had been injured by acts of war was kind of scary. The medical technology on display was definitely 1950s and earlier. No photos allowed, so please come visit!

After the tour we walked back towards Mathias Church which was nicely lit up.



Then down Castle Hill, pausing for more views of Parliament.



And across the Chain Bridge...



The walk down was more scenic than waiting for the bus. It was a very pleasant evening, and the views from the bridge were lovely!



Dinner was nice; we got to use up our F&B credit, and we didn’t have to think about where to eat. We started off with a glass of Hungarian sparkling Rose. Appetizers were escargot (traditional French preparation) and Duck rillette – two layers of confit pressed around a very fatty (but tasty) layer in the middle – foie gras? pure duck fat? Butter? Who knows.

We got a bottle of red to counteract all the fat, based on the sommelier’s recommendation – Kékfrancos. Very nice, spicy with a little oak, medium body, opened up nicely in the glass and went well with our entrees. I had venison over red cabbage puree with baked apple; Chris had beef cheeks with root vegetables. Now, time for bed!
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JP and Chris

Last: Silver Explorer - Along the Humboldt Current, Guayaquil to Valparaíso - Oct 2017 (review)

Future bookings - come join us!
Silver Wind - #2828, Copenhagen to Tower Bridge - Sept 2018
Silver Cloud Expedition - #1918, Reykjavik to Reykjavik - August 2019

Past:
Ganges Voyager II (Uniworld) - India's Golden Triangle & the Sacred Ganges - Feb 2017 (review)
River Beatrice (Uniworld) - Danube - April 2016
(photo review)
SS Catherine (Uniworld) - Burgundy and Provence - March 2015 (review)
Silver Cloud - Eastern Med - Istanbul to Athens - October 2014 (photo review)
Silver Cloud - North Atlantic - Tower Bridge to Reykjavik - August 2014 - (photo review)
SS Antoinette (Uniworld) - Castles on the Rhine - Basel to Amsterdam - April 2014 (photo review)
Silver Explorer - Central America - Colon to Puerto Caldera - October 2013 (photo review)
MS Sun Boat III - Nile River - November 2012 (pics1) (pics2)
Silver Wind - Athens to Rome - June 2012 (report) (Greece pics) (Italy pics)

Celebrity Xpedition - Galapagos - November 2011 (Peru pics) (Galapagos pics)
Silver Explorer - Longyearbyen to Tromso - August 2011 (report) (Svalbard pics) (Tromso pics)
Silver Wind - Cape Town to Cape Town - Feb 2011 (pics)
Silver Cloud - London to Nice - September 2010 (France pics) (Spain and Portugal pics)
Silver Wind - Black Sea - June 2010 (pics)
Silversea PAII - Antarctica - Dec 09 (pics)
#15
Jacksonville, FL USA
48,707 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
WOW...great photos.......I was thinking of doing Paris next year but I
will have to give Budapest/Prague more serious thought

Hope you are having a wonderful time
#16
Philadelphia Area
179 Posts
Joined Mar 2009
Can't wait to read rest and pictures are beautiful. I have the hospital in the rock to see Monday afternoon when all museums are closed. We leave 5/18 On River Beatrice. Set up a 3 hr Budapest Tuk Tuk tour on Friday, Saturday day trip to Puszta, horse show. Sunday, tour parliament and a museum. Board ship. Should be interesting. We are a group doing a Jewish Heritage tour. This is first time Uniworld is doing this. Uniworld set up private tours in Budapest, Bratislava, and Prague for us.
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#17
Albany, NY
4,432 Posts
Joined Jul 2009
Dusty, have a great time! This was a fun trip and we're glad it worked out so well. Lois, Budapest was charming and we enjoyed our first visit so much. But Paris is a lot of fun too, and French is surely easier to speak than Hungarian! Prague is moving up the list but haven't made it there yet.

So the journey ends today...we are hanging in the BA lounge here in Munich, sipping some Prosecco, and reminiscing about how much fun it was. Our flight to Atlanta boards soon and then we have a 4h layover until Albany tonight.

Munich was great last night - it felt like we were visiting an old friend. Had some great food and plenty of spring beer, and we're leaving happy... Well, as happy as one can be when we have to go to work tomorrow. Hope I can remember my password!
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JP and Chris

Last: Silver Explorer - Along the Humboldt Current, Guayaquil to Valparaíso - Oct 2017 (review)

Future bookings - come join us!
Silver Wind - #2828, Copenhagen to Tower Bridge - Sept 2018
Silver Cloud Expedition - #1918, Reykjavik to Reykjavik - August 2019

Past:
Ganges Voyager II (Uniworld) - India's Golden Triangle & the Sacred Ganges - Feb 2017 (review)
River Beatrice (Uniworld) - Danube - April 2016
(photo review)
SS Catherine (Uniworld) - Burgundy and Provence - March 2015 (review)
Silver Cloud - Eastern Med - Istanbul to Athens - October 2014 (photo review)
Silver Cloud - North Atlantic - Tower Bridge to Reykjavik - August 2014 - (photo review)
SS Antoinette (Uniworld) - Castles on the Rhine - Basel to Amsterdam - April 2014 (photo review)
Silver Explorer - Central America - Colon to Puerto Caldera - October 2013 (photo review)
MS Sun Boat III - Nile River - November 2012 (pics1) (pics2)
Silver Wind - Athens to Rome - June 2012 (report) (Greece pics) (Italy pics)

Celebrity Xpedition - Galapagos - November 2011 (Peru pics) (Galapagos pics)
Silver Explorer - Longyearbyen to Tromso - August 2011 (report) (Svalbard pics) (Tromso pics)
Silver Wind - Cape Town to Cape Town - Feb 2011 (pics)
Silver Cloud - London to Nice - September 2010 (France pics) (Spain and Portugal pics)
Silver Wind - Black Sea - June 2010 (pics)
Silversea PAII - Antarctica - Dec 09 (pics)
#18
New York
8,412 Posts
Joined Aug 2011
Originally posted by jpalbny
Dusty, have a great time! This was a fun trip and we're glad it worked out so well. Lois, Budapest was charming and we enjoyed our first visit so much. But Paris is a lot of fun too, and French is surely easier to speak than Hungarian! Prague is moving up the list but haven't made it there yet.

So the journey ends today...we are hanging in the BA lounge here in Munich, sipping some Prosecco, and reminiscing about how much fun it was. Our flight to Atlanta boards soon and then we have a 4h layover until Albany tonight.

Munich was great last night - it felt like we were visiting an old friend. Had some great food and plenty of spring beer, and we're leaving happy... Well, as happy as one can be when we have to go to work tomorrow. Hope I can remember my password!
Welcome home. Glad you had a great trip. PS: your password is on the post-in stuck to your screen!
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Email me: [email protected]
Blogs: Jazzbeaux Blogs

I am not an employee of Cruise Critic and I don't speak for Cruise Critic. All opinions are mine alone. Also, I'm only a Host on the various River forums -- everywhere else I'm "just plain Jazz."

Booked:
Azamara Quest Costa Rica 1-2018
AMA Discover Africa 5-2018
Viking Sun British Isles Explorer 8-2018
Celebrity Edge Caribbean B2B / Celebrity Equinox Caribbean B2B 1-2019 [will choose one!]

Completed:
Crown Princess Classic Canada & New England 10-2017
Norwegian Pride of America Hawaii 10-2016; Azamara Quest Norwegian Fjords 8-2016; Celebrity Constellation Greek Isles 5-2016; AmaDagio Provence 9-2015; Celebrity Xpedition Galapagos 5-2015; Celebrity Eclipse Southern Carib 3-2015; Fresco Tours A Kinder Camino walking tour 9-2014; Crystal Serenity Mediterranean 5-2014; Coral Princess Panama Canal 1-2014; AmaCello Rhine 8-2013; Coral Princess Alaska 6-2013; Ireland Fly-Drive 9-2012; Norwegian Dawn Caribbean 3-2013 / Celebrity Summit Caribbean 1-2012 / Oceania Insignia Mediterranean 5-2011 / Fair Dinkum (Erie Canal bareboat) 7-2003 / Costa Italia Caribbean 5-1974
#20
The Third Coast - Nashville
7,890 Posts
Joined Mar 2001
Jpalbany, thanks for posting. Brings back memories...what did you think of the River Beatrice and crew?

Roz