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Europe's Rivers & Castles (2018)

Begin your vacation in Paris before taking a high-speed TGV train into Luxembourg, where you will board your ship. Visit Trier, the oldest city in Germany, and continue through the Mosel River Valley, admiring its steep hillsides sheathed in endless vineyards. Visit the German villages of Bernkastel and Cochem and experience the dramatic scenery of the Rhine River Gorge, dotted with picturesque fortresses and castle ruins. Along the Main River, stop at medieval towns before cruising through the Main-Danube Canal to historic Nuremberg. Conclude your journey with two nights in Prague.

  • Price starts at: $4539
  • Tour length: 12 Days
  • Trip Type: River Cruise

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Itinerary & Activities

Itinerary Map
(click for larger version)
Itinerary map of Europe'

Day 1

ARRIVE IN PARIS, FRANCE Arrive in Paris and check-in to your hotel. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. Walk through the city's enchanting streets, drop by a charming sidewalk café or visit one of many world class museums.

Day 2

PARIS Today, you'll visit Notre Dame and then enjoy some free time to explore the “City of Light.” Afterwards, you'll see some of the most famous sights on a panoramic city tour, followed by a photo stop at Champs de Mars for views of the Eiffel Tower. (B)

Day 3

PARIS Enjoy a free day to explore the romantic “City of Light.” Stroll along the Champs Elysées, lined with boutiques and cafes, or go to the top of the Eiffel Tower, built for the 1889 World's Fair. (B)

Day 4

PARIS – LUXEMBOURG – EMBARKATION Bid au revoir to Paris as you board your TGV high-speed train that will whisk you away and into Luxembourg, one of Europe's last independent duchies. You will have a guided walking tour of Luxembourg as well as a stop at the American Cemetery and Memorial, the final resting place of General George Patton, before boarding the ship. Tonight, gather on board for a Welcome Dinner. The ship departs very late tonight for Germany. (B,D)

Day 5

TRIER, GERMANY – BERNKASTEL After breakfast a guided walking tour of Trier—Germany's oldest city—will introduce you to its rich Roman past. You will see Trier Cathedral, the Basilica of Constantine and the Porta Nigra gate that dates back to 179 A.D. Continue on to Bernkastel, strategically located in the middle of the Mosel Valley's wine-producing region, an area that's been cultivating wine for over 500 years. A guided walking tour through the old town center this afternoon will take you past many medieval and Renaissance buildings. You will also enjoy a winery visit and sample several regional vintages. Your ship departs later this evening and cruises overnight. (B,L,D)

Day 6

KOBLENZ-COCHEM – RHINE RIVER GORGE – RÜDESHEIM Today, enjoy a guided tour of Cochem that takes you to the spectacular hilltop Reichsburg Castle, offering fantastic views of the river valley below. Or, opt to take a walking tour of Koblenz and explore its charming town square and quaint shops. Return to the ship for a scenic afternoon cruise along the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine, with castle ruins, fortresses and the legendary Lorelei Rock. We arrive in Rüdesheim this evening and visit Siegfried's Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum, or you may choose to join us for some Rüdesheimer Coffee. The ship moors overnight in Rüdesheim. (B,L,D)

Day 7

MAINZ – HEIDELBERG This morning, depart Rüdesheim and cruise to beautiful Mainz, arriving after lunch. Your guided walking tour includes a visit to the Gutenberg Museum, home to two copies of the world's first printed Bible as well as centuries-old manuscripts and printing presses. You may also choose to see the famed Chagall windows, which depict scriptural scenes in stunning blue. As an alternative to Mainz, you can travel by motor coach to Heidelberg, Germany's oldest university town, where you will take a tour of the old town and visit the red-walled castle with its Great Vat (a 49,000-gallon wine cask) as well as enjoy beautiful views of the Neckar Valley and city below. Later this afternoon, the ship departs Mainz and cruises overnight to Wertheim. (B,L,D)

Day 8

WERTHEIM Welcome to Wertheim, a quaint German town known for its intricate glassworks and charming medieval architecture. You have your choice of one of three excursions today. Enjoy a guided walking tour of the historic city center, a scenic guided bike tour along the Main River, or a visit to local bakery for a pretzel-making demonstration and tasting. Your ship cruises to Würzburg this evening. (B,L,D)

Day 9

WÜRZBURG – KITZINGEN This morning's guided tour of Würzburg will show you all of the city's major sights, or you may prefer to visit the Residenz Palace and gardens, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. The next stop is Kitzingen this afternoon where the town's Historic Court Council and honorary Wine Queen will escort you to one of Germany's oldest wine cellar to sample regional wines. You may either cruise to Kitzingen, or get there via a guided bike ride through the Franconian countryside. Later tonight, the ship sails towards Bamberg. (B,L,D)

Day 10

BAMBERG Arrive this afternoon in enchanting Bamberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where you will have one of three ways to explore. The first is a guided walking tour of this medieval gem to see its cathedral, Old Town Hall and elegant old mansions, as well as sample some of Bamberg's famous smoked beer. The second is a guided bike tour along the Main River, and the third is a Bamberg Specialties tasting where you will enjoy smoked beer, licorice root and Hornla, a local favorite whose recipe dates back to 1427. This evening, we continue cruising towards Nuremberg. (B,L,D)

Day 11

NUREMBERG – DISEMBARKATION – PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC Today you will discover the Bavarian city of Nuremberg. Often associated with WWII and gingerbread making during the holidays, Nuremberg has a rich medieval heritage that is woven perfectly into its modern day presence. You will see Gothic churches, the Zeppelin Field where Hitler once held his massive Nazi Party Rallies, and Justice Palace where the War Crimes Tribunal sat in 1946. You will also have some free time to explore the city's romantic corners and charming shops, and have lunch on your own before transferring to the epically beautiful city of Prague. (B)

Day 12

PRAGUE Your morning's sightseeing tour reveals why Prague is considered one of Europe's most attractive cities, with a historic city center that's recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will see Rudolfinum, the National Museum, Wenceslas Square and the Hundertwasser Dancing House. Next, visit the 1,000 year-old Prague Castle and St. Vitus before walking over the romantic Charles Bridge to the Old Market Square, where you will find the capital's famous Astronomical Clock, Tyn Church and the statue of Jan Husek. The rest of the day is at your leisure, perhaps to enjoy yourself in one of the city's many charming cafés. (B)

Day 13

DEPART PRAGUE Bid farewell to Prague and prepare for your homeward flight. (B)


Things to Know

Preparing For Your Trip
  • Make Sure to Bring All of Your Important Documents: Passport, Foreign visa (if applicable), Itinerary, Trip confirmation, Airline ticket, Drivers license, Credit cards, Travel documents.

  • Vaccinations Are Required for Entry to Some Countries. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) can provide you their recommendations for vaccinations and other travel health precautions for your trip abroad.

  • Are You Taking Any Prescriptions or Other Medications? Pack enough to last your entire trip, including some extra in case you are unexpectedly delayed.

  • Insurance: Purchase travel insurance to cover yourself against unexpected situations. You never know when something might happen, so always be prepared.
While Traveling
  • Keep an eye on your belongings. Do not leave your belongings unattended in public spaces

  • Always have local cash. Not every place takes credit cards.
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