Romantic Rhine - Basel to Amsterdam

  • 8 Days

  • Switzerland

Inspiration and discovery await on this journey along the Rhine. Enjoy guided sightseeing in Cologne, Koblenz and Rüdesheim. Experience the Black Forest that’s central to much of German folklore, and explore Heidelberg, the country’s oldest university town, with its imposing castle. Sail through the Rhine Gorge, passing by the legendary Lorelei Rock and discover the history of the printing press at the Gutenberg Museum in Mainz. See the half-timbered houses and quaint bistros of Strasbourg’s Petite France, and finish with a cruise through the canals of Amsterdam.

Your journey starts here

Highlights

VIP private home pick-up service
Flights
Transfers
Services of a cruise director
Accommodation
Selected meals
Wine & beer with lunch and dinner
Excursions
Gratuities on cruise
All airport and port taxes
  • Overview

  • Day 1

  • Day 2

  • Day 3

  • Day 4

  • Day 5

  • Day 6

  • Day 7

  • Day 8

of 8 days

Your detailed itinerary

Cruise departing on 16th December 2017

Meals included: 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners

Overview

At a glance

Strasbourg Guided sightseeing, visit La Petite France district and the Gothic cathedral
Breisach Black Forest excursion, visit to an open-air museum or trip to a woodcarving workshop
Rhine Gorge Cruise through the gorge past Lorelei Rock

Extensions

 

Day 1

Basel (Embarkation)

Travel to Basel where you will be met and transferred to your cruise ship  for seven nights. Before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 2

Breisach

Included today: Excursion to the Black Forest. Located at the foot of Kaiserstuhl Mountain on the French-German border, Breisach is the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest region, an area of unrivalled natural beauty with its forests of thick pine trees. The area got its name because the forests are so dense that local residents described them as black. There’s no better setting for this time of year than when smoke curls from the chimneys of the traditional Black Forest houses with their long sloping roofs, connoting images of warm and festively decorated interiors. Surely the most well-known products from this region are Black Forest ham, Black Forest cherry cake, and cuckoo clocks. This afternoon there’s free time in Breisach to visit the Christmas market, or you may join an optional excursion to Colmar in France’s Alsace region.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 3

Strasbourg

Included today: Walking tour of Strasbourg. Situated on the border of France and Germany, Strasbourg blends the cultures of both countries in a delightful way. As capital of the Alsace region and seat of the Council of Europe and European Parliament, it is without a doubt an important city, yet it manages to retain its historic charm. In fact, on your walking tour you will discover Europe at its most quintessential. Visit the monumental red-sandstone Gothic cathedral with its ancient murals, stained-glass windows, and fascinating astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France district, home to half-timbered houses, quaint shops, inviting bistros, and a waterfront promenade. Also spend time exploring Place Kléber, a large historic square in the heart of the city, and Place Gutenberg in the heart of medieval Strasbourg, which features a statue of the inventor of the printing press. Dating back to 1570, the traditional Christmas market is one of the oldest and finest in Europe. Located around Place de la Cathédrale and Place Broglie, its centerpiece is a giant Christmas tree. As you stroll through the festively decorated and illuminated streets you’ll notice the pleasing aromas of mulled wine, sweets, spice cakes, and biscuits. This afternoon, an optional excursion into the Alsace wine region is available.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 4

Heidelberg - Mainz

Included today: Guided visit of the castle, see the Great Vat and visit the Gutenberg Museum. This morning, an excursion takes you to Heidelberg, home to Germany’s oldest university, which was founded in 1386. Visit the imposing ruins of Heidelberg Castle, towering magnificently over the city and among the most important Renaissance structures north of the Alps. You’ll also see the famed Great Vat, the ‘World’s Largest Wine Barrel’ at nearly 23 feet high and 28 feet wide, the cask holds over 58,000 gallons of wine and has a dance floor built on top of it. At this time of year, an ice rink is set up at the foot of the castle, and stalls offer Glühwein, Bratwurst, and other tasty treats. The Christmas market itself is scattered over five town squares, and you’ll find a wide array of crafts and regional delicacies. In the afternoon, arrive in Mainz. Strategically located at the confluence of the Rhine and Main Rivers is Mainz, with its origins dating back to around 38 BC. Today, this is Germany’s largest and most important wine market. The Altstadt (Old Town) has many intriguing shops and the whimsical Fastnachtsbrunnen (Carnival Fountain) on the Schillerplatz, a tribute to the jesters at the city’s annual Carnival celebration. Gutenberg, father of modern printing, was born here and during a guided walk you’ll visit the captivating Gutenberg Museum.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 5

Rudesheim - Rhine Gorge - Koblenz

Included today: Visit Siegfrieds Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum, cruise through the Rhine Gorge, guided walk in Koblenz. This morning dock in pretty Rüdesheim, a typical Rhine Valley wine town. Visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum, where you’ll see and hear a large collection of self-playing calliopes and music boxes from the 18th to the early 20th centuries. The entire town transforms itself into one large Christmas market, offering products and specialties from a number of nations, all presented in a distinctive manner. You’ll be spoiled by the selection of shops offering a vast variety of Christmas presents and decorations. In the Market Square you’ll find Europe’s largest nativity scene, with life-size figures. Downstream from Rüdesheim is the dramatic Rhine Gorge, the most beautiful stretch of river. Here, ancient castles stand sentry on lofty cliffs rising 400 feet above the waters. Cruise past the legendary rock of the Lorelei, where echoes of enchanted siren song lured unwitting sailors to their doom. Then, arrive at the place where the Rhine and Moselle Rivers meet, the Deutsches Eck (German Corner) with its impressive equestrian statue of German Emperor William I. Join your local guide for a walking tour of the 2,000-year-old city of Koblenz, which reveals an eventful past through its castles, fortress walls, towers, squares, and monuments.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 6

Cologne

Included today: Cologne guided city walk. One of Germany’s largest cities and capital of the Rhineland, Cologne, straddles both sides of the Rhine, and is known for its soaring, twin-steepled gothic cathedral. This morning, join an included guided city walk. The Old Town abounds with cafés, shops, and taverns. Be sure to try a Kölsch pale lager, locally brewed in Cologne for over a hundred years. Wander through the fabulous and magical Christmas market before leaving Cologne and sailing to Amsterdam.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 7

Amsterdam

Included today: Canal cruise. Holland’s sophisticated, modern capital has a rich and fascinating history. This delightful 700-year-old city with its elegant and classic architecture, cafés, and restaurants has a distinct ambiance. There is no better way to see Amsterdam than by canal boat, cruising through the elegant grachten lined with stately homes dating back to Amsterdam’s ‘Golden Age’. There’s free time this afternoon to enjoy the city or perhaps join an optional excursion. Say goodbye to Amsterdam during a special Illumination Cruise and experience the Lights Festival hosted by Amsterdam during the winter season. A glass of Glühwein will warm you up as you enjoy the Christmas lights.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Day 8

Amsterdam (Disembarkation)

Disembark and transfer to the airport for your flight to the UK.

Meals included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Notes

 

Your ship

Avalon Felicity

Avalon Felicity combines the intimate feeling of a small ship while providing the space passengers have come to expect from the fleet. Avalon Felicity accommodates 138 passengers and has four suites and 65 staterooms, all of which are spacious and well appointed, and many of which have floor-to-ceiling windows providing superb views throughout your river cruise. Her staterooms are among the largest available on European river cruise ships and are equipped to provide the highest levels of comfort. On the sun deck, as well as plenty of space to watch the world go by, there is also a Jacuzzi to take a refreshing dip in while you cruise. Guests have the use of a lift to reach the staterooms.

Amenities
  • Smoking
  • Adults only
  • Childrens facilities
  • Nursery
Ship facts
  • Style: Luxury
  • Class: Suite ship
  • Size: Boutique
  • Number of crew: 39
  • Number of cabins: 69
  • Number of wheelchair cabins: 0
  • Number of large cabins: 0
  • Capacity: 138 passengers
  • Main language on board: en
  • Currency on board: EUR
  • Number of decks: 4
  • Length (m): 110
  • Width (m): 11.45
  • Speed in knots: 13
  • Launch year: 2010
Available cabins on this cruise
Avalon Suite

Avalon Suites feature floor to ceiling sliding glass doors with French balcony, spacious living area, Comfort Collection Beds, featuring premium mattress covers, Egyptian super-combed cotton linens and European-style duvets, choice of soft or firm pillows, extra blankets, choice of bed configuration - two twin beds or one queen-size bed, nightly turn-down service, bedside tables with reading lamps, large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium L'Occitane bath amenities, spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage, easy under-bed luggage storage, flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels, alarm clock, writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair, complimentary Wi-Fi access, direct-dial telephone, bathrobes and slippers, well-stocked minibar, complimentary bottled water, in-room safe, individual climate control, continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies).

Details

  • 258 square feet
  • Sleeps 2

Deluxe Stateroom (Cat P, A, B)

These staterooms feature floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors with French balcony, flatscreen satellite TV with film channels & radio, comfortable, hotel-style beds, Comfort Collection Beds, featuring premium mattress covers, Egyptian super-combed cotton linens and European-style duvets, choice of soft or firm pillows, extra blankets, choice of bed configuration - two twin beds or one queen-size bed, nightly turn-down service, bedside tables with reading lamps, spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage, writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair, easy under-bed luggage storage, large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium L'Occitane bath amenities, bathrobes and slippers, alarm clock, complimentary Wi-Fi access, direct-dial telephone, well-stocked minibar, complimentary bottled water, in-room safe, individual climate control, continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies).

Details

  • 172 square feet
  • Sleeps 2

Deluxe Stateroom (Cat E)

These staterooms have Comfort Collection Beds, featuring premium mattress covers, Egyptian super-combed cotton linens and European-style duvets, choice of soft or firm pillows, extra blankets, choice of bed configuration - two twin beds or one queen-size bed, nightly turn-down service, bedside tables with reading lamps, spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage, writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair, easy under-bed luggage storage, large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium L'Occitane bath amenities, bathrobes and slippers, alarm clock, complimentary Wi-Fi access, direct-dial telephone, well-stocked minibar, complimentary bottled water, in-room safe, individual climate control, continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies).

Details

  • 172 square feet
  • Sleeps 2

Life onboard

Avalon Felicity combines the intimate feeling of a small ship while providing the space passengers have come to expect from the fleet. Avalon Felicity accommodates 138 passengers and has four suites and 65 staterooms, all of which are spacious and well appointed, and many of which have floor-to-ceiling windows providing superb views throughout your river cruise. Her staterooms are among the largest available on European river cruise ships and are equipped to provide the highest levels of comfort. On the sun deck, as well as plenty of space to watch the world go by, there is also a Jacuzzi to take a refreshing dip in while you cruise. Guests have the use of a lift to reach the staterooms.

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