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Keeping Up

From Amsterdam to the Black Sea

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Earlier this year we decided to continue with our "Eastern European Ring".

 

We started this ring in 2011 with a cruise from the Baltic to the Black Sea via the River Volga. This year we extended it by taking a cruise from the North Sea to the Black Sea by way of the River Rhine, the River Main, the Main-Danube Canal, and the River Danube. Passing through 8 countries in 3 weeks, it was an amazing trip; I've finally sorted through all of the photos and posted a report of this epic voyage on our website.

 

I hope you enjoy reading it - and do have a look at the fascinating movie clips of the mechanical instruments and the Hungarian Horsemen.

 

Now we just need to complete the ring, by cruising across the Baltic ...

  • Greenie 1

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Check https://www.saimaatravel.fi/en/ if you want to travel on the Saimaa Canal from Finland into Russia. We went to St Petersburg with them earlier in the year and, having travelled fairly extensively in Russia, I thought their visa-free trip an excellent way to get an idea of the country, much better than the usual tourist trips. The Saimaa Canal trip was interesting as most of the canal was rebuilt post war, but you can still see some of the 1840s locks. I contacted the canal museum in Lappeenranta, and had a person tour, including the remains of the second attempt to build the canal dating from the early 1600s, the earlier remains from the 16th century having been built over during construction of the 1840s/1850s canal. You can find more details about Scandinavian canals at http://kanaler.arnholm.nu/english/skandinave.shtml.

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You were lucky Allan. We did the Danube from Budapest to Nuremburg in September and had to change boats part way up as the river was too low. We went with Viking River Cruises and their boats draw 2 mtrs but there was only 1.5 mtrs available at one of the shallower areas.
Loved Bupapest but found that the Nazi stuff in Nuremburg was oppresive. The locks on the canal were most impressive!
We did the Rhine with them 4 years ago and have now booked to do the Duoro in 2020.

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Yes, we were so lucky to get all the way from Amsterdam to the Black Sea without changing ship at any point. Nearly everyone we know who has taken a cruise on these rivers has had problems at some point - either river too low or too high. I gather that over the last couple of weeks all the ships have been static, being just used as floating hotels while passengers do all their travelling by coach.

 

I hope you enjoy the Douro as much as we did last year. Have you read my account of that trip ?

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