EMBARKATION – LUXEMBOURG CITY, LUXEMBOURG. Embark your ship in Luxembourg. Tonight, gather on board and meet your fellow passengers. The ship departs very late tonight for Germany.
TRIER, GERMANY – BERNKASTEL. Trier, Germany’s oldest city, has often been referred to as the second Rome. Be guided to the Roman Imperial Baths, the Porta Nigra and Emperor Constantine’s Throne Room. During the afternoon, sail the Moselle River to Bernkastel, strategically located in the middle of the Moselle Valley’s wine-producing region. Walk through the colorful Old Town center and past many medieval buildings before enjoying a wine tasting at a local winery.
COCHEM. History comes to life in Cochem with its half-timbered houses and Reichsburg Castle. Join a guided tour through the castle, situated high above the town, and then walk through its Old Town. For those wishing to have a more active exploration of the area, you can go on a guided hike to the castle. Or for a different adventure, explore the Bundesbank Bunker to get a closer look at this mysterious Cold War era bank vault. Later in the day, sail along the Moselle taking in the fascinating scenery of Europe’s steepest vineyards.
RHINE GORGE – RÜDESHEIM. Cruise along the scenic Rhine River Gorge with its fabled legends and many castles dotting high above its riverbank. Once in Rüdesheim, you will have three choices of excursions. Take a gondola ride to the Niederwalddenkmal Statue, where you can enjoy panoramic views of the river. Afterwards, indulge your taste buds with a sampling of Riesling wines in the vineyards. Alternatively, you can join a guided bike tour through the town and along the Rhine River; or hike to Ehrenfels Castle, idyllically situated in the midst of the vineyards. Later in the day, you have two more excursions. Visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Music Museum or taste one of the town’s special delights, Rüdesheimer coffee, ceremoniously made with brandy.
LUDWIGSHAFEN. Discover a grand Baroque palace, one of Mark Twain’s favorite European towns or one of the most whimsical gardens in the Europe on choice of excursions. Relive a bygone era on an excursion to the glorious Mannheim Baroque Palace. Tour this splendid palace furnished with over 800 exhibits, including 21 large tapestries, ornate furniture, priceless paintings, valuable porcelain and costly silverware. Prefer to visit the town Mark Twain fell in love with, then join on a tour to Heidelberg, a perfectly preserved medieval city nestled in the Neckar River Valley along Germany's Castle Road. You'll see the red-walled castle with its Great Vat, an 18th-century 49,000-gallon wine cask and the old city. Alternatively, visit Schwetzingen Palace Gardens, a cultural heritage site of European significance. Wander through the gardens with more than 100 sculptures and admire an assortment of whimsical buildings. The Apollotempel, houses a statue of the ancient Greek god of light and the arts, playing the lyre; the Badehaus, a summerhouse modelled on an Italian villa; and the most spectacular, the Türkischer Garten with a mosque designed by Nicolas de Pigage, the largest structure of its kind in a German garden— are a few of the many highlights you will see.
STRASBOURG, FRANCE. Strasbourg, the capital city of Alsace, has flavors of both France and Germany because of its borderline location, which you'll get to discover. Enjoy a panoramic bus tour past the stunning Parc de l’Orangerie, the European Parliament and the Place de la République followed by a walking tour through its iconic “La Petite France” district, which appears to have been lifted straight from the pages of a fairytale. You'll also see the Cathédrale de Nôtre Dame with its famous astronomical clock. The active adventurer can join a guided Old Town bike tour, which also takes you through the Parc de l’Orangerie.
BREISACH,GERMANY – BASEL, SWITZERLAND. Step back in time with a visit to Riquewihr, a charming medieval hamlet that looks almost the same as it did in the 16th century. On your walking tour, admire historic architecture and surrounding vineyards as well as famous sights, such as the Dolder Gate. Alternatively, you may wish to go to Freiburg, founded in 1120 and home to the Freiburg’s Münster, a Gothic cathedral said to have “the most beautiful spire on earth.” Those wishing a more active excursion can cycle through the scenic countryside. Later in the day, sail to Basel where you will have leisure time to explore the city.
BASEL – DISEMBARKATION. Disembark after breakfast.