One of Europe’s most legendary rivers awaits you on this delightful winter journey along the Rhine River, which takes you across Germany—and touches in Holland, France, and Switzerland!This magnificent river cruise begins in the ever popular, modern city of Amsterdam, Holland. The best way to see the treasures of this 700-year-old city is on a canal cruise along the elegant grachten lined with homes dating back to the city’s “Golden Age.” Cologne, Germany—a 2,000 year-old city known for its gothic architecture—will be an exciting stop with its famous twin-spired cathedral and Old Town with many shops, cafés, and taverns. While you’re there, why not try a locally-brewed Kölsch beer? Pass through the dramatic Rhine Gorge—the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine River where ancient castles stand on cliffs 400 feet above the water. And nearby, in the charming wine town of Rüdesheim, visit the unique Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum. Continue your Rhine river cruise to Mainz for a guided walk and visit to the captivating Gutenberg Museum. An excursion takes you to Heidelberg to visit the ruins of its red-walled castle towering magnificently over the city. In Strasbourg, France, you’ll be amazed by the red-sandstone gothic cathedral with ancient murals and fascinating astronomical clock. The city’s Christmas market is one of the oldest and finest in Europe.Before the end of your European river cruise vacation, stop in Breisach, Germany, located on the French-German border, the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest—an area of unrivaled natural beauty—best known for Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and the cuckoo clock. At every stop, you’ll experience the magical charm of this time of year, with the towns decked out in festive lights and décor, and the Christmas markets waiting to be explored.
Day 1 Amsterdam (Embarkation): welcome receptionDay 2 Amsterdam: canal cruiseDay 3 Cologne: guided city walk; Christmas marketDay 4 Rhine Gorge–Rüdesheim: cruise through the Rhine Gorge; visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum in Rüdesheim; special treat; Christmas marketDay 5 Mainz. Excursion to Heidelberg: guided walk, visit the Gutenberg Museum in Mainz; excursion to Heidelberg, guided visit of the castle, see the Great Vat; Christmas marketDay 6 Strasbourg: guided sightseeing, visit the La Petite France district and the gothic cathedral; Christmas market; onboard woodcarving demonstrationDay 7 Breisach. Excursion to the Black Forest: visit a local woodcarver’s workshop; Christmas marketDay 8 Basel (Disembarkation): your vacation ends this morning
In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change becomes necessary, a substitute will be offered.In the event that a high-speed train is unavailable due to strikes or technical reasons, the route will be altered or operated by motorcoach.