Immerse yourself in French and German culture on this fabulous European river cruise vacation along the Rhône and Rhine Rivers. The views will be spectacular so be sure to pack your camera so you can capture the romance and splendor of this magical journey.Your river cruise vacation begins in Arles, France—famous for inspiring the paintings of Van Gogh and its 1st-century Roman Amphitheater, which hosts plays and concerts to this day. The twin cities of Tournon and Tain l’Hermitage are beautifully nestled among vineyards and you’ll go on a guided walk of Tournon, a medieval treasure with plenty of Roman ruins and a fascinating 16th-century castle. Lyon, France’s gastronomic capital, is a showcase of medieval and Renaissance architecture. Explore the Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its maze of medieval alleyways.You’ll stop in Breisach, the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest, well known for Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and cuckoo clocks. In Strasbourg, France, stroll through the picturesque La Petite France district with its quaint shops, delightful bistros, and peaceful waterfront promenade. Visit the ruins of Heidelberg’s castle, towering magnificently over the city, and stop in Mainz for a guided walk and a visit to the captivating Gutenberg Museum. Sail through the dramatic Rhine Gorge, the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine River dotted every mile with ancient castles standing majestically on cliffs 400 feet above the water. Your last stop in Germany is Cologne, where a guided walk shows you the highlights of this 2,000-year-old city known for its gothic architecture and famous twin-spired cathedral.A stay in Holland’s popular, modern capital of Amsterdam is the perfect way to conclude this sensational European river cruise. And the best way to see the treasures of this 700-year-old city is on a canal cruise along the elegant grachten lined with homes dating back to the city’s “Golden Age."For specific details on this special interest river cruise, please view the day-by-day itinerary.
Day 1 Arles (Embarkation): welcome to France; onboard welcome reception; cruise into the Camargue region (daylight permitting)Day 2 Arles: guided sightseeing, visit the Roman Amphitheater; evening jazz band entertainmentDay 3 Avignon: guided sightseeing, visit the Palace of the PopesDay 4 Cruising–Viviers: guided walk, visit Old Town and the cathedralDay 5 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Vienne: guided walk in Tournon; onboard jazz music entertainment, guided walk in Vienne; free time to visit the Vienne Jazz FestivalDay 6 Lyon: guided sightseeing, picture stop on Fourvière Hill; onboard lectureDay 7 Cruising–St. Jean de Losne: day at leisure; cheese tasting; onboard jazz entertainmentDay 8 St. Jean de Losne (Disembarkation)–Beaune–Basel, Switzerland (Embarkation): visit the Hôtel-Dieu in Beaune; transfer to Basel; onboard welcome receptionDay 9 Breisach: Excursion to the Black Forest, visit a woodcarver’s workshop or visit a Black Forest open-air museumDay 10 Strasbourg: guided sightseeing, visit La Petite France district and the gothic cathedralDay 11 Excursion to Heidelberg–Mainz: guided visit of the castle, see the Great Vat in Heidelberg; visit the Gutenberg Museum in MainzDay 12 Rüdesheim–Rhine Gorge–Koblenz: visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum and enjoy a special treat in Rüdesheim; cruise through the Rhine Gorge; guided walk in KoblenzDay 13 Cologne: choice of guided city walk or Jewish Heritage walkDay 14 Amsterdam: canal cruiseDay 15 Amsterdam (Disembarkation): your vacation ends this morning
In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program. Your palate will applaud as you learn what to look for in a good wine. A distinguished wine authority will teach you the ropes as you visit a wine village and attend tastings to test your newfound talent.Special Features and day of operation are subject to change.