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10 Days | Switzerland to the North Sea


Day 1 | Basel, Switzerland. Embark. Welcome to Basel, on the Rhine River in northwest Switzerland. Transfer from the airport to your ship. After boarding, enjoy time on your own getting acquainted with the city, or join our “welcome walk” to stretch your legs and get oriented. Dinner is served aboard. (D)

Day 2 | Basel. Enjoy a walking tour of Basel, where Switzerland, France and Germany meet. Basel is one of Europe’s most vibrant centers of arts and culture. You’ll begin your exploration in its remarkably preserved Old Town, an entrancing cluster of medieval squares and structures, including the Rathaus, or Town Hall, and the splendid Cathedral, built from red sandstone in Gothic and Romanesque style. After lunch on board, you have a free afternoon to explore on your own. You might peruse the collections in any of Basel’s many fine museums or sample local products and mingle with the Swiss at the daily farmers’ market in the main market square. (B, L, D)

Day 3 | Breisach, Germany. Arrive in Breisach this morning, gateway to the Black Forest. Take a scenic excursion through the area’s renowned mountain landscape, rolling meadows and dense forests. Once there, visit a local workshop and see a cuckoo clock-making demonstration. Return to Breisach or choose an optional excursion to the quaint Alsatian town of Colmar. Dine aboard and cruise on through the night. (B, L, D)

Day 4 | Strasbourg, France. Arrive in Kehl this morning and disembark for your guided tour of Strasbourg. See the European Parliament and tour the interior of the city’s famed cathedral. Free time allows you to further explore this Alsatian city’s blend of French and German cultures, resplendent churches, medieval covered bridges, verdant parks and handsome Art Nouveau and modernist architecture. As always, your Program Director can help you plan your free time. Return to your ship for dinner and departure. (B, L, D)

Day 5 | Heidelberg. Rudescheim. Wake up in Mannheim and disembark for a tour of Heidelberg to see Germany’s oldest university, founded in 1386. Then, visit the beautiful sandstone ruins of imposing Heidelberg Castle and take in the scenery of the Neckar River Valley and the city’s many red rooftops from this hilltop post. Afterward, set on a walking tour through Old Town to Heidelberg’s renowned gates. Return to your ship for afternoon cruising. Arrive in Rüdesheim in the early evening, then spend free time in the pedestrian-only Drosselgasse and sample a glass of locally produced wine at one of the restaurants or wine bars. Dine aboard your ship or spend more time exploring in town if you prefer. We remain docked overnight. (B, L, D)

Day 6 | Koblenz. This morning, sail along the most scenic stretch of the Rhine, where castles overlook the river from their hilltop posts. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this part of the Middle Rhine Valley is so beautiful. Arrive in Koblenz this afternoon and disembark for a tour of 700-year-old Marksburg Castle and its museum. Return to your ship for lunch. Later, enjoy some time in this charming town at the confluence of the Moselle and Rhine Rivers. (B, L, D)

Day 7 | Cologne. Continue along the Rhine this morning; arrive in Cologne and disembark for a walking tour. Stroll through Old Town past St. Martin’s Church, and spend some time inside Cologne’s Dom, a remarkable Gothic cathedral whose construction began in 1248 and was only completed in 1880. Explore the dockside taverns, cafés and shops on your own. As always, your Program Director can help you plan your free time. Dinner is served aboard and we remain docked until late evening. (B, L, D)

Day 8 | Kinderdijk, Holland. We sail along the Rhine during the morning hours, enjoying scenic views. Spend your morning enjoying some popular Dutch diversions: sample Dutch cheeses and jenever, a distilled juniper liquor, and try your hand at sjoelen (Dutch table shuffleboard). After lunch, your ship arrives in Kinderdijk, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, for an afternoon tour of this ingenious network of windmills and other flood management devices. You learn why the windmills were built and see how they work, plus you enter a working windmill for a tour of its mechanisms and living quarters. Board your ship for departure and dinner. Arrive in Amsterdam after midnight. (B, L, D)

Day 9 | Amsterdam. Get to know Amsterdam in the best way possible: via its vast network of canals. You will board a glass-topped boat this morning and float along some of its major waterways and through its more narrow and intimate canals. Graceful, low-slung arched bridges and quaint gabled houses mark your progress through this charming city. As you cruise, you can make note of the sites you’d like to explore more closely and venture out after lunch on board. Perhaps you’ll browse the splendid collection at the Rijksmuseum, including Rembrandt’s famed Nightwatch, or the breathtaking works of genius at the Van Gogh Museum. Along the way, you might stop to sample sweet stroopwafels or try the Dutch version of a savory pancake. (B, L, D)

Day 10 | Amsterdam. Disembark. After breakfast, disembark and proceed to the airport for your return flight. Or, extend your journey with 2 additional nights in Amsterdam; take time to explore the city’s neighborhoods, museums and exciting nightlife. (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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