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Christmas Markets on the Rhine

Christmas Markets on the Rhine

Example 12 Day Cruise aboard MS Amaprima
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Join the MS Amaprima on a wonderful 12-day christmas theme voyage. Start your cruise in Amsterdam and tour her renowned canals. Next, visit Heidelberg and Cologne, famous for its majestic Cathedral and bustling Christmas markets. Weave through the fabled Black Forest region and the Alsace region as you make your way toward Basel, then disembark your ship, MS Amaprima, for a visit to two of Switzerland's loveliest cities, Lucerne and Zürich, where you can enjoy a lake excursion, magical Christmas markets, and pristine alpine vistas.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Amsterdam, Netherlands | Embark
Day 2 : Amsterdam, Netherlands
Day 3 : Cologne, Germany
Day 4 : Rhine Gorge | Rüdesheim, Germany
Day 5 : Mannheim | Heidelberg, Germany
Day 6 : Strasbourg, France
Day 7 : Breisach, Germany
Day 8 : Basel | Disembark | Lucerne, Switzerland
Day 9 : Lucerne, Switzerland
Day 10 : Lucerne | Zurich, Switzerland
Day 11 : Zurich, Switzerland
Day 12 : Depart Zurich, Switzerland

Highlights

  • Cruise through the canals of Amsterdam, the "Venice of the North"
  • Tour Cologne, Germany and browse the festive Christmas market
  • Visit the historic Siegfried's Mechanical Instrument Museum in Rüdesheim
  • Explore the streets and monuments of Lucerne, Switzerland

Ship

MS Amaprima

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Christmas Markets on the Rhine Christmas markets on the Rhine Christmas markets on the Rhine Detailed ornament at a Christmas Market Rooftop image of a Christmas Market

Day 1 Amsterdam, Netherlands | Embark

Arrive in charming Amsterdam and board your luxurious river cruise ship, MS Amaprima. Meet your fellow travelers tonight at the Welcome Dinner. 

Day 2 Amsterdam, Netherlands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The famous canals of Amsterdam await discovery on your city tour. Begin with a scenic canal cruise and see the tall narrow homes lining the water, the Skinny Bridge, and the house where Anne Frank and her family lived in hiding during WWII. Next, walk to Begijnhof, known for its historic buildings dating back to the Middle Ages and have some free time to explore. Later, enjoy a panoramic city tour on which you can see the Royal Palace, Westerkerk, and stop for photos at a Dutch windmill before returning to the ship. This afternoon depart for Germany. 

Day 3 Cologne, Germany

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The ship arrives in Cologne around lunchtime. Take a guided tour of the city, strolling through the Old Town and Cathedral Square, and visiting the fabled Gothic cathedral. This evening, experience the elaborate Christmas Market in Cathedral Square, one of Europe’s largest and most renowned. The ship cruises overnight. 

Day 4 Rhine Gorge | Rüdesheim, Germany

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning, cruise through the picturesque Rhine Gorge, admiring its many castles and fortress ruins and the legendary Lorelei Rock. This afternoon, arrive in the winemaking town of Rüdesheim where you have the option to take one of three excursions: wine tasting with a local vintner, a gondola ride above the town to see the Niederwalddenkmal Statue, or a guided bike tour along the Rhine River to one of Germany's best wine regions. Later, shop at the town’s Christmas Market and explore the Drosselgasse, the town’s most famous and charming street, a narrow passage lined with shops and taverns. This evening, visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum, home to a remarkable collection of old robotic and self-playing musical instruments, or enjoy some Rüdesheimer Coffee. The ship sails overnight. 

Day 5 Mannheim | Heidelberg, Germany

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Arrive in Speyer, where you have a choice between three excursions this afternoon. Your first option is a half-day excursion to the historic university town of Heidelberg, where you can visit the red-walled castle with its Great Vat (a 49,000-gallon wine cask) and enjoy beautiful views of the Neckar Valley and city below. You can also opt to enjoy Speyer, one of Germany’s oldest cities, known for its cathedral, numerous churches and the medieval Altpörtel (Old Gate), on either a city tour or biking tour. Later, take some time to visit the local Christmas Markets. This evening, the ship continues onward to Strasbourg, France. 

Day 6 Strasbourg, France

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Capital city of France’s Alsace region, Strasbourg is situated on the Rhine at the German border. After arriving this morning, enjoy one of three excursions. The first option is a panoramic tour that takes you past the Orangery, the European Parliament, and the Place de Republique. Afterwards, explore on foot with a walking tour of the lovely “La Petite France” neighborhood, where you can see the Gothic cathedral with its famous astronomical clock, and have a chance to visit Strasbourg’s famous Christmas Market – said to be the oldest and best in all of France. Your other options are a bike tour to the Old Town, or a hike that starts at the Orangery and makes its way to the cathedral. The remainder of the day is yours to spend as you wish. The ship moors in Strasbourg overnight. 

Day 7 Breisach, Germany

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
You have two exciting excursions to choose from today. The first is a walking tour of Riquewihr, a picturesque town renowned for its historic architecture and for its Riesling wines, followed by time at the town’s Christmas Market. A second option is a walking tour of the beautiful towns of Breisach and Freiburg, where you can visit the historical city center and Freiburg’s Münster, a Gothic cathedral constructed of red sandstone. You can also visit Christmas Markets here. Your third option is guided bike tour of Breisach that takes you through the Rheinau woods. Tonight, the ship cruises towards Switzerland. 

Day 8 Basel | Disembark | Lucerne, Switzerland

Disembark after breakfast and head off on a city tour of cosmopolitan Basel. Long an important university, banking, and trade center, Basel’s glorious past is still evident in its medieval Town Hall and old, elegant homes. Later, enjoy lunch on your own in Basel. Depart for Lucerne, stopping en route to visit the Lion Monument, built to honor the Swiss Guards who fought for King Louis XVI during the French Revolution. After arriving mid-afternoon and checking in to your hotel, the remainder of the evening is yours to spend at your leisure, perhaps visiting Lucerne’s Christmas Market.

Day 9 Lucerne, Switzerland

Situated on Lake Lucerne, this city is truly a medieval gem. After breakfast, enjoy a walking tour that explores some of the city’s famous cobblestone streets, monuments, fountain-embellished public squares, covered bridges, and colorful fresco-covered buildings. You can have free time in the afternoon to shop for Swiss-made watches, knives, and delicious chocolates.

Day 10 Lucerne | Zurich, Switzerland

Enjoy a free morning in Lucerne before checking out of your hotel. Afterwards, cruise across the tranquil waters of Lake Lucerne to Vitznau, where you board a motor coach for a scenic drive to Zurich. After checking into your hotel, the remainder of the day is at your leisure to explore the town or visit Zurich’s enchanting indoor Christmas Market (located inside the city’s main train station).

Day 11 Zurich, Switzerland

Your morning walking tour of picturesque Zurich includes the Grossmünster and St. Peter, which has the largest church clock face in the world. You can also see the Old Town, the Town Hall, and the Fraumünster abbey, home to five world-famous Chagall windows. The rest of the day is free for you to explore on your own, visit the Christmas Markets, or stroll the Bahnhofstrasse, one of the world’s most expensive shopping avenues. 

Day 12 Depart Zurich, Switzerland

  • 1 Breakfast
After breakfast, bid farewell to Switzerland and prepare for your return flight home.

MS Amaprima

Lucerne

Zurich

Per person starting at
$4,479
Cabins Category D and E
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Category E
Piano Deck. Fixed Windows, 148 sq. ft.
Cabins Category D and E
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Category D
Piano Deck. Fixed Windows, 148 sq. ft.
Cabin Category C
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Category C
Violin & Cello Deck. French Balcony, 170 sq. ft.
Cabin Category BA and BB
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Category BB
Cello Deck. French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 210 sq. ft.
Cabin Category BA and BB
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Category BA
Violin Deck. French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 210 sq. ft.
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Category AB
Cello Deck. French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 235 sq. ft.
Cabin Category AB and AA
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Category AA
Violin Deck. French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 235 sq. ft.
Cabins AB and AA
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Category AA+
French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 290 sq. ft.
Cabin Category Suite
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Suite
Violin Deck. French Balcony & Outside Balcony, 350 sq. ft.

Notes

Single supplement is 50%, except for Suites which are 100%.

2017 Included Features:
- 7 nights deluxe cruise accommodation in an outside stateroom - most staterooms offer revolutionary twin balconies
- Shore excursions in every port with personal headset included
- Limited Edition Tours
- Entertainment on demand in all staterooms featuring free high-speed internet access, hit Hollywood movies, extensive music library and English language TV stations
- Complimentary Wi-Fi access on board
- Terry bathrobes and white-on-white plush bedding in all staterooms
- Fine dining with all meals included during your cruise
- Unlimited red and white wines from Europe's great wine regions, beer and soft drinks with every lunch and dinner on board
- Bottled water in every stateroom replenished daily
- Cocktail Reception, Welcome Dinner and Captain's Gala Dinner
- Special highlights including lectures, theme dinners, cooking demonstration, onboard music performances and afternoon/evening piano music
- Transfer from ship in Basel to hotel in Lucerne
- 2 Nights Hotel Accommodation in Lucerne at the Radisson Blu including daily Buffet Breakfast
- 2 Nights Hotel Accommodation in Zürich Hotel Continental including daily Buffet Breakfast
- Bicycles to explore on your own and guided bicycle tours
- Services of professional Cruise Manager
- All English language on board in a non-smoking environment (smoking permitted only on the Sun Deck)
- Transfers between hotel and ship are included with the purchase of cruise and land package; airport transfers are included with the purchase of airfare from the expedition company
- All local taxes

2018 Included Features:
- 7 nights deluxe cruise accommodation in riverview stateroom or suite – most staterooms offer twin balconies
- Fine dining, including unlimited complimentary hand-selected wines, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner on board
- “Sip & Sail” Daily Cocktail Hour withcomplimentary wine, beer, spirits and soft drinks
- Cocktail Reception and Captain’s Gala Dinner
- Complimentary Wi-Fi access on board
- Guided shore excursions in every port including Limited Edition Tours
- Live entertainment, cooking demonstration and more
- Complimentary bicycles
- Services of a professionally trained Cruise Manager throughout your cruise and land stay
- An all English-speaking staff on board
- 2 nights hotel in Lucerne at the HotelSchweizerhof Lucerne (or similar), including daily buffet breakfast
- Transfer from hotel in Lucerne to Zurich
- 2 nights hotel in Zurich at the Hotel SchweizeriofZurich (or similar), including daily buffet breakfast
- Transfers between hotel and ship are included with the purchase of cruise and land package; airport transfers are included with the purchase of airfare from the expedition company

Included

  • 11 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 7 Dinners
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Erin Correia
Erin C

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The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.
Gale Cantor

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