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13 Days | The Rhine and Moselle


Day 1 | Basel, Switzerland. Embark. A transfer is included from Basel-Mulhouse International Airport to the ms Swiss Jewel. Your cruise begins when all guests check in at 4:00 PM; join us this evening for a welcome briefing and dinner onboard the riverboat. (D)

Day 2 | Basel. The Tauck Difference in European river cruising is all about where you go, what you do, and who you meet on your shore excursions – and today, you have a choice! First choice is spending the day in Basel, a beautiful city on the banks of the Rhine River. You'll get a good overview on a brief sightseeing tour that is followed by a walking tour in the Old Town – see the bright-red Rathaus, Basel’s Town Hall. After lunch, explore more of one of Europe’s most attractive and best-preserved Old Towns on your own, perhaps taking in one of the city’s 40 museums. Your second choice is a trip to Lucerne, one of Switzerland's prettiest towns – situated on Lake Lucerne, with a panoramic view of the Swiss Alps, the town is extremely pedestrian-friendly. Spend several hours exploring, best done on foot – stroll through the Old Town squares, walk across one of the oldest covered wooden bridges in Europe, see the beautiful façades of medieval buildings... Return to Basel late afternoon; this evening, the captain welcomes you aboard at a welcome dinner on the riverboat. (B,L,D)

Day 3 | Strasbourg, France. Awaken in Strasbourg, France, seat of the European Council, the European Parliament and the European Court of Human Rights. You’ll see the Parliament buildings before stepping back in time to discover La Petit France, noted for its medieval half-timbered houses set beside its lovely canals, on a walking tour. While visiting the famous Gothic Cathédrale de Notre-Dame de Strasbourg on this most extraordinary of Rhine River tours, you’ll be inspired by the graceful, expressive statuary of the Pilier des Anges (Pillar of Angels), and the magnificent stained glass windows. Return to the riverboat for lunch or choose to dine at one of the city’s many intriguing restaurants on your own. (B,L,D)

Day 4 | Baden-Baden. An excursion to the beautiful spa town of Baden-Baden reveals that the elegant Belle Èpoque period is still alive and well. For many generations, wealthy folks have flocked here to see and be seen, and to take the healing thermal waters for which the town is famous. Join us on a walking tour and time spent on your own discovering some of the town's treasures ranging from the ruins of Roman baths to the ornate, 250-year-old Belle Èpoque casino, the Kurhaus, which movie star Marlene Dietrich once described as "the most beautiful casino in the world." (B,L,D)

Day 5 | Heidelberg, Germany. Speyer. A full day in the historic college town of Heidelberg, home to one of the oldest universities in Europe, as well as the setting for the famous operetta, The Student Prince, awaits you today during your most captivating of Rhine River tours. Take a walking tour of Heidelberg for a close-up look at the Old Town, and ride a funicular up to the imposing Heidelberger Schloss, perched 300 feet above the city; view its examples of medieval, Renaissance and Baroque architecture, and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. Perhaps you’ll be as captivated by this lovely old city as America’s first travel writer, Mark Twain, was when he spent three months here with his family. Rejoin the riverboat in Speyer. (B,L,D)

Day 6 | Middle Rhine Valley. Boppard. Koblenz. While your riverboat glides through the Middle Rhine Valley en route to Boppard, listen to the legend of the Lorelei and see for yourself why this beautiful part of the river – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – has inspired composers, writers and artists for centuries. During its 2,000-year history, Celts, Romans and Franconians have all called Boppard home; explore this marvelous medieval town on a walking tour, then your riverboat continues on to Koblenz, with some lively local entertainment aboard ship. (B,L,D)

Day 7 | Moselle Valley. Cochem. Stepping ashore at Cochem in the Moselle Valley is like stepping into the pages of a medieval fairy tale. Tour picture-perfect 1,000-year-old Reichsburg Castle, which looks down on Cochem's quaint market square. Explore this jewel of a town – complete with Baroque town hall and ancient town gates – breathing in its historic charm and ambiance. Honor the area’s centuries-old winemaking traditions with a tasting of the excellent locally produced vintages at a family-owned winery / wine museum before returning to the riverboat. (B,L,D)

Day 8 | Bernkastel. Luxembourg. Dock in Bernkastel this morning for a journey to the tiny Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. A walking tour of its well-preserved old town reveals the Cathedral, Parliament, the Palace of the Grand Duke, and centuries-old battlements that are today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Pay a poignant visit to the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial; over 5,000 American casualties of World War II's Battle of the Bulge lie buried here, as does General George S. Patton. Later, return to charming Bernkastel, known as both the "Pearl of the Moselle" and the "international town of vines and wine." The town is celebrated not only for its wines, but also for its medieval market square surrounded by half-timbered houses, which you'll see on a walking tour, along with its castle ruins, fortress-like 14th-century church and Renaissance-era town hall. (B,L,D)

Day 9 | Trier, Germany. Cruise the Moselle Valley. On an excursion to Trier, discover this ancient city – which lays claim to being the oldest in Germany – during a walking tour that includes both medieval treasures and sites dating back to Roman times. After some leisure time back in Bernkastel, reboard your riverboat and enjoy an afternoon of classic river cruising, watching the scenery slip by from the Sun Deck as your riverboat glides along the Moselle.

Day 10 | Bonn. This most enriching of Rhine River tours continues in Bonn; tracing its roots back to the Romans, the city engages with history spanning ancient times to the present day. Beethoven’s birthplace, the home of musicians Robert and Clara Schumann, and the capital of the Federal Republic of Germany from 1949 to 1991, it is still a center of German administration, politics and culture. Discover it all during a sightseeing tour and a walk through Old Town; enjoy a memorable lunch in a grand hotel used to host visiting dignitaries, set in a spectacular location overlooking Bonn and the Rhine. (B,L,D)

Day 11 | Arnhem, Holland. Set off aboard your riverboat for Arnhem and the 5,500-hectare De Hoge Veluwe National Park, home to many endangered plant and animal species. In the midst of this natural glory, you’ll find the inspiring Kröller-Müller Museum, featuring works of such luminaries as Pablo Picasso, Georges Seurat and Vincent van Gogh, along with Europe’s largest sculpture garden. Rejoin the ship in Nijmegen for lunch, followed by a free afternoon to spend exploring this 2,000-year-old city – the oldest in the Netherlands – as you choose. Whether you’re intrigued by Roman and medieval history, the legacy of World War II, African art or modern-day Dutch life, you’ll find something interesting here. Please join us for the Captain’s farewell reception and dinner aboard the riverboat this evening. (B,L,D)

Day 12 | Amsterdam. As your cruise – and this most extraordinary of Moselle and Rhine River tours – comes to an end in Amsterdam, indulge yourself in the many charms of the Dutch capital today. You'll be introduced to the city's remarkable architecture on a sightseeing cruise of its 17th-century canals, winding up at Museumplein, where you'll visit the famed Rijksmuseum, home to one of the world’s most important collections of artwork by the Dutch Masters, including Rembrandt’s The Night Watch. Enjoy the rest of the day exploring this fascinating metropolis, at once one of Europe's most modern and most historic cities, on your own. (B,L,D)

Day 13 | Amsterdam. Your Moselle and Rhine River cruise ends today after breakfast. A transfer is included from the riverboat to Amsterdam’s Schiphol International Airport for your flight home; allow a minimum of 3 hours for flight check-in. We wish you a safe and pleasant journey home. (B)

NOTE: Itinerary is subject to change without notice. For the most up-to-date information, please refer to the itinerary schedule you receive with your final documents.

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