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Gardens, Mozart and Puppets: A Trip Through Austria with Adventures by Disney

posted on July 23rd, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

If you’re looking to visit a place with a ton of charm, may I suggest Austria? As excited as I was to visit the Bavarian Alps on my recent 9-day, 8-night Austria, Germany & the Czech Republic Adventures by Disney vacation, my eyes were woefully unprepared for the sheer amount of natural beauty they would behold during the Austrian portion of this trip.


First up was Salzburg, where we took a privately guided tour that included enchanting gardens, lush landscapes and striking fountains that will beg for you to burst into song; and I might have done just that on several occasions. Here we dined at a 1,200-year-old restaurant while being serenaded by a duo of Mozart violinists! I felt very fancy indeed.


On our way to Vienna we made a stop in the adorable town of Mondsee, where we enjoyed lunch al fresco alongside the gorgeous lake. The beauty of this place has earned it a spot on my personal “most charming places I’ve visited” list.


In Vienna the one-of-a-kind experiences just kept on coming. We enjoyed a private marionette performance and got to try our hand at operating them (with guidance from the masters). We learned how to make strudel (and sampled it aplenty), toured the famous Schonbrunn Palace, got an exclusive backstage look at Royal Spanish Riding School and even tested our gracefulness during private Waltz lessons! As a very special treat we also visited the Vienna Zoo after hours, where our group enjoyed a private look at the animals and a unique dinner feast at the former breakfast pavilion of the Emperor, located in the middle of the zoo.


But I haven’t even told you about my favorite part yet. Ask anyone who’s been on an Adventures by Disney trip about their experience and they’re sure to tell you about their amazing Adventure Guides. For this trip our group was educated, entertained and delighted by Adventure Guides Stephanie and Dean, and they truly made every moment unforgettable. The number of exceptional experiences they created for us is too numerous to list, but it was in Austria that they really brought experiences to life the very most. Here they donned a lot of hats, literally and figuratively. Seriously, these two love to dress up. And they know their audience; we all loved it!

And so ends my Adventures by Disney Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic trip. Retelling it has made me want to do it all over again!

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Hiking, Sliding and Spelunking In the Alps with Adventures by Disney

posted on July 13th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager


On my recent Adventures by Disney trip to Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic I was (figuratively) bursting at the seams with my desire to belt out this yodeling refrain. And when we made it to Berchtesgaden, Germany, our Alpine retreat for three nights of our eight-night adventure, I found there was plenty worth yodeling about.

For starters I got to go spelunking in the Alpine Eishole Ice Cave. And while it didn’t entail any pickaxes, harnesses or rappelling into narrow canyons, this caving excursion was full of adventure. First we hiked to a funicular railcar, then hiked some more up to the entrance of the cave, high up in the Alps. Then we were outfitted with old school lamps, just like the kind you see the Seven Dwarfs carry, as we entered the dark, chilly cave, which was illuminated as our lantern light gleamed off of the ice that surrounded us. Words can’t accurately express how surreal this looks in person, but I do have this photo, which does it only a small amount of justice.


And the view while hiking to the ice cave wasn’t too shabby either. I mean, if you’re the type of person who likes being surrounded by awe-inspiring beauty.


If one caving adventure just isn’t enough to satisfy you, never fear. With Adventures by Disney you also get to don overalls and travel deep into the Salzbergwerk Berchtesgaden Salt Mine. While I’ll admit that visiting a salt mine previously wasn’t high on my “must see” list, it was quickly apparent that this experience was unlike anything I had imagined. For starters, the giant slide that literally whisked us into the mine like giggling schoolchildren set a fun and adventurous tone to this expedition. Once underground, we were greeted by an otherworldly salt lake that looked like a scene out of a space movie. Is this Mars? No, it’s a German salt mine!


I also enjoyed a wide variety of activities above ground. I hand crafted – and gobbled up – my own pretzel creations, toasted my fellow adventurers with giant German-size beers, watched an exhilarating falconry demonstration and toured an 11th-century castle. The climb to the incredibly breezy bell tower graced us with more incredible views, and this windblown hairstyle.

Traveling With Adventures by Disney to Austria, Germany and Czech Republic Traveling With Adventures by Disney to Austria, Germany and Czech Republic

Next, the adventure took me to Salzburg and through Austria to explore some truly magical sights. If I’ve had trouble holding back from breaking into a yodel thus far you can only imagine what sort of musical-worthy songs I’ll have to suppress during my next Adventures by Disney post here on the Disney Parks Blog. Follow along!

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‘Czech’ing Out Prague with Adventures by Disney

posted on July 8th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

I’ve recently returned from an Adventures by Disney trip to Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic and I’m finding it hard to hold back my joyful yodels declaring what an amazing experience I had in this Alpine region of Europe (in fairness I’ve never heard a sad yodel, they are generally rather lively in nature). But, as this 9-day, 8-night adventure begins in the rather non-snow-capped mountain city of Prague, a yodel is hardly appropriate for this post (or ever, as those who sit near me in the office would argue).

Famous sites like St. Vitus Cathedral can be seen on the Adventures by Disney Austria, Germany and Czech Republic vacation.

While I’ve always wanted to visit Prague, it is a city I previously knew little about. And that’s the great thing about traveling with Adventures by Disney; no matter how much (or how little) research you’ve done about an area prior to taking a trip, you can rest easy knowing that many of the key planning details have already been taken care of for you.

And upon landing in the Czech Republic I was not disappointed. Our group was welcomed with a dinner in a centuries old building complete with amazing stained glass, traditional Czech cuisine and live accordion music (I know that being a fan of both yodeling and accordion music might put me in the minority here, but the authenticity of this sort of ambience truly makes for an outstanding welcome to Central Europe). A cultural tour of Prague, including a charming cruise down the Vltava river, helped us to get acquainted with the city.

The beautiful landscape of Prague is one of the sights of this Adventures by Disney vacation.

Another great thing about Adventures by Disney is that you don’t simply observe the area you’re visiting, you also have the chance to get hands-on and truly immerse yourself in the region. At dinnertime on night two that meant not watching professional dancers swing and twirl, but also putting our own dancing skills to the test. And I confirmed that yes, I do still possess two left feet!

After two nights in Prague we set off for the UNESCO World Heritage Site Český Krumlov. This small city in the Bohemian Region of the Czech Republic proved to be even more beautiful than I imagined. The cobblestone streets were charming and the castle (guarded by actual, real-life brown bears) looked like it was drawn from a fairytale.

The author of this article is shown posing in front of the Bavarian Alps while vacationing with Adventures by Disney

And then it was time for the Bavarian Alps! I’ll leave you with this shot of me standing literally above the clouds to tempt you to follow along on the rest of my journey (complete with location appropriate yodeling) right here on the Disney Parks Blog.

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A Room With a View on An Adventures by Disney Vacation to Central Europe

posted on June 26th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

I just returned from an amazing Austria, Germany and Czech Republic Adventures by Disney vacation. I’ll be sharing some of my favorite experiences from that trip here on the Disney Parks Blog shortly but, in the meantime, I wanted to show off my favorite room with a view from this adventure.


Imagine waking up to the sight of the Bavarian Alps outside your window. Well I did just that during my Adventures by Disney stay in Berchtesgarden, Germany! And as you can see, the three nights I spent here as part of this 8-night trip were truly breathtaking.

The Austria, Germany and Czech Republic trip is also one of the uniquely designed multi-generational trips Adventures by Disney is offering for 2015. The Aug. 21-29 departure of this trip will include a professional photographer on hand to capture photos of your extended family together.

Of course, every Adventures by Disney trip offers some pretty remarkable views. Be sure to follow the new Adventures by Disney Pinterest page for even more great shots like this one!

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Explore the Culture and Beauty of Budapest on an Adventures by Disney Danube River Cruise Vacation

posted on June 18th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

When guests sail on an Adventures by Disney Danube River Cruise vacation, they’ll visit eight cities and towns in four European countries. Today I’ll share with you one of the ports I’m most excited about – Budapest, Hungary.


Here you’ll take in the striking scenery and architecture on a panoramic city tour that will have you “oohing” and “ahhing” from the moment you step off the ship.

Relax on a scenic carriage ride, see the famous “csikosok” (Hungarian cowboys), and delight in an entertaining horse show at Lazar Equestrian Park while surrounded by picturesque views. If you’re in the mood for some friendly competition, challenge your friends and family in a goulash-making contest, complete with live music by traditional Hungarian folklore musicians.


Taste and discover the flavor and cultural of Budapest as you explore Great Market Hall. From smelling (and yes, also sampling) the fresh baked pastries and sweets to browsing some of the local hand-made crafts, this market will have you stocking up on souvenirs and devouring tasty treats.


As night falls, be dazzled by the radiant buildings of Budapest as they light up the night on your Illuminations Cruise. You’ll toast to an unforgettable evening as you cruise along the Danube River, enjoying the incredible architecture that surrounds you.

Budapest is just one stop on a 7-night/8-day European River Cruise vacation with Adventures by Disney. Stay tuned as I continue to share other exciting adventures from this vacation!

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Adventures by Disney Introduces New Ways to Explore Europe in 2016

posted on June 10th, 2015 by Andrae Gill, Adventures by Disney

In 2016, Adventures by Disney is offering adventure-seeking travelers new and exciting ways to experience Europe, including a newly reimagined England and France vacation, as well as additional departure dates for the recently announced all-new Danube river cruise itineraries.


Starting today, book a newly enhanced 8-day, 7-night England and France itinerary for 2016 that now includes even more immersive activities and discoveries such as scone making, a dragon “hunt,” a speedboat journey down the River Thames and more. Explore the Eiffel Tower, tour Windsor Castle, marvel at masterpieces in the Louvre Museum and so much more on this breathtaking adventure.


This newly reimagined England and France itinerary joins the recently announced lineup of European river cruise vacations planned for 2016, which have proved so successful that additional sail dates have now been added. On these exciting new adventures, you can sail down the famed Danube River to experience iconic locations and hidden gems in eight destinations across four countries – Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary.

Looking to take a Disney Cruise Line vacation to Europe in 2016? You can also add an Adventures by Disney pre-package in Copenhagen, Barcelona or London on select cruise departures. Or, for even deeper immersion, add an Adventures by Disney embedded experience to select 7- or 12-night European cruises to the Baltic or Mediterranean.

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Disney Parks After Dark: Geyser Steam on an Adventures by Disney Wyoming Vacation

posted on May 28th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

I have to say, I have the most tempting job in the world, being constantly bombarded with breathtaking images taken on Adventures by Disney vacations around the globe. How can I resist the urge to hop on a plane to each and every destination I see? They all look too amazing for words.

Case in point, this incredible “after dark” shot from the Adventures by Disney Wyoming trip. Geyser steam rises, meeting the chill in the April air. And this photo beckons me to come explore this beautiful landscape more.


But tomorrow I’ll see another photo. Perhaps of Greece or Laos and I’ll be drawn to those images as well. It’s a sweet torture to imagine all the places I could be right now.

Time to scroll through the Adventures by Disney website and pick out my next adventure!

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Uncover Hidden Gems on Adventures by Disney Long Weekend Vacations

posted on May 27th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

Hello from The Big Apple! New York, New York. The City that Never Sleeps.

New York City is an iconic destination, and it’s a place I have visited many times (and it’s the locale I’m writing you from right now). It’s also filled with seemingly endless entertainment, which is why, despite my many visits, I still feel like I’ve only scratched the surface of seeing everything that this most famous of U.S. cities has to offer. That’s why I’m excited to say that the next time I visit the Empire State will be on an Adventures by Disney New York City Long Weekend vacation.


While this trip visits some of the legendary sites you would expect to see on any vacation to New York City, such as Central Park and Broadway, it also visits places you probably haven’t discovered yet, such as the Prop Room at the New Amsterdam Theatre, as well as hidden gems, such as the Tenement Museum. These are places that I’ve certainly never seen before, and through Adventures by Disney I’ll get to experience them in unique ways that I simply couldn’t do on my own, such as learning a Broadway dance number from a professional choreographer.


I’ve also visited our other Long Weekend destinations, San Francisco and Nashville, several times before. And yes, I’ve been to Napa and the Grand Old Opry. These are places you’d expect to visit during a vacation to these cities, and Adventures by Disney will take you to see these sights as well. However, with Adventures by Disney you don’t just visit a winery in Napa, you also take part in wine blending (for the adults) and olive oil activities (for the Junior Adventurers). In Nashville, not only will you get to see a show the Grand Ole Opry, you’ll also go backstage for a tour, as well as a private dinner experience and line-dancing lessons. On all of our trips you get to experience the very best of what these cities have to offer, while also discovering places and experiences you probably wouldn’t uncover on your own. And that’s what makes them so special.


I can’t wait to share my Adventures by Disney New York City Long Weekend vacation with you later this summer. Until then I’ll share this little sneak peek I recently got of the New Amsterdam Theatre, where the Broadway production ALADDIN is currently playing. And yes, that is me standing on the stage! These are the types of exclusive experiences you get with Adventures by Disney.

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Adventures by Disney Adds More Danube River Cruise Sailings

posted on May 14th, 2015 by Heather Killingbeck, Director, Trip & Program Development, Adventures By Disney

Last month Adventures by Disney launched all-new river cruise itineraries for 2016. These itineraries were so popular with our guests that now we’re excited to announce two additional river cruise vacations on the Danube river in Europe, sailing on August 4, 2016, as well as a special holiday-themed departure on December 15, 2016!


Sailing with AmaWaterways, the Adventures by Disney Danube River Cruise vacation offers families the opportunity to discover Europe in a unique and immersive way, while visiting iconic locations and wondrous sites in eight destinations across four countries – Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary.

On these 8-day, 7-night vacations, guests will experience the captivating culture and authenticity each European country and city has to offer, while only having to unpack once. Whether sliding down a mineshaft in Salzburg, sipping wine from local vineyards in Melk or even learning a traditional Austrian dance, guests will be in awe of the beauty and adventures each destination offers. With countless activities and sights to see, these river cruise vacations offer maximum port time for exploration.

For more information on Adventures by Disney Danube River Cruise itineraries, visit

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A Trip Fit for Royalty with Adventures by Disney

posted on May 11th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

The world is buzzing with news of the royal baby, and I can’t help but wish I were born into the royal bloodline myself. I’m not greedy, I’d settle for a single castle to call my own. But since the prospect of learning I’m the heir of the Kingdom of Genovia seems unlikely, my new goal is to feel like royalty on an Adventure by Disney England and France vacation.


This trip visits all sorts of regal London landmarks, including Westminster Abbey, the beautiful cathedral that has been the site of coronations, historical events and royal weddings (including the marriage of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Kate).


You’ll also witness the Changing of the Guard (time permitting) at Buckingham Palace, the historic residence of England’s royal family. (I’ve tried, they wouldn’t let me in to have tea with the Queen, but I did have some fabulous scones just down the road a bit.)

And of course, what sort of royal would you be without jewels? Well never fear, on this trip you’ll see the Crown Jewels up-close (well, as up-close as possible given how heavily guarded they are) at the Tower of London. I assure your fate here will be much better than Anne Boleyn’s!


In case that’s not enough, you’ll also take a classic double decker bus tour around town where you can be delighted by countless other locales noteworthy to the monarchy, including the Palace of Westminster, which houses the famous Big Ben. (This is as close to being a princess as I think I’ll ever really get.)

Outside of London the journey continues into the English countryside where you’ll see how Kings and Queens live on the grounds of Windsor Castle—home to the British royal family since the 11th century. Still used as a royal residence, Windsor Castle is the largest inhabited castle in the world.

The trip includes many other highlights. And I haven’t even talked about all the fabulous things you’ll experience in Paris! So if you’re interested in learning more, visit

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