Arrive in charming Amsterdam and embark your luxurious river cruise ship. Meet your fellow travelers tonight at the Welcome Cocktail Reception.
After breakfast, your tour of Amsterdam begins with a scenic canal cruise through the city known as the 'Venice of the North.' 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. Later, enjoy a panoramic city tour that will show you many key sights, including a photo stop at the windmill famously painted by Rembrandt. You'll have some free time to explore on your own before returning to the ship. The ship departs this afternoon en route to Germany.
Enjoy a guided tour of Cologne this morning, which takes you to the Old Town, Cathedral Square, and the city's majestic 13th-century Gothic cathedral. Afterwards, you have free time to visit some of the local shops or have a coffee at a quaint cafe. Late tonight, the ship cruises to Koblenz and moors overnight.
This morning sail through the fascinating Rhine Gorge, passing castle after castle and the legendary Lorelei Rock. Arrive in Rudesheim and enjoy an afternoon wine tasting with a local vintner. Explore the Drosselgasse, a narrow alley lined with wine taverns and restaurants during your free time. This evening, visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum, home to a remarkable collection of centuries-old robotic and self-playing musical instruments. As an alternative, sample a glass of Rüedesheimer coffee – a local favorite – at a friendly café. The ship sails overnight.
Arrive around noon in Speyer, one of Germany's oldest cities, known for its cathedral, numerous churches and the 13th-century Altportel ('Old Gate'). Choose either a city tour of Speyer or a half-day excursion to historic Heidelberg to visit the red-walled castle with its Great Vat (a 49,000-gallon 18th-century wine cask) and see beautiful views of the Neckar Valley and city below. This evening, the ship continues onward to Strasbourg, France.
Capital and principal city of the Alsace region in northeastern France, Strasbourg is situated on the Ill River, where it flows into the Rhine on the border with Germany. This morning, take a panoramic tour through this charming medieval town lined with narrow cobbled streets. The tour takes you past the Orangery, the town's oldest park, the European Parliament, and the Place de la Republique. Afterwards, take a walking tour of the "La Petite France" neighborhood, where you will see the sandstone Gothic Cathedral with its famous astronomical clock. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. Perhaps take a stroll through Strasbourg's historic city center, the 'Grande Ile' ('Grand Island'), a UNESCO World Heritage site, or sample the local cuisine and wine that merges the best of French and German influences. The ship moors overnight.
You have two exciting excursions to choose from today. The first is a walking tour of Riquewihr, a picturesque town that looks much as it did back in the 16th century. A second option is a walking tour of Breisach and Freiburg. Breisach is a beautiful town on that houses one of Europe's largest wine cellars. In Freiburg, visit the historical city center and the Augustinerplatz, site of Freiburg's Munster, a Gothic cathedral constructed of red sandstone. Tonight, the ship cruises to Switzerland.
Disembark after breakfast for a city tour of cosmopolitan Basel. Switzerland's second largest city is ideally located at the crossroads of Switzerland, France and Germany. Long an important center for banking, commerce, and trade, Basel's glorious past is still evident in its medieval Town Hall and exquisite 18th-century patrician homes. After free time for lunch on your own, depart for Lucerne. En route visit the Lion Monument, a dramatic sculpture that honors the Swiss Guards killed during the French Revolution. Arrive mid-afternoon and check in to your hotel.
Situated on Lake Lucerne, the city is a medieval gem. After breakfast, enjoy a walking tour that explores some of the city's lovely cobblestone streets, monuments, fountain-embellished public squares, covered bridges and colorful frescoed buildings. The afternoon offers free time to shop for Swiss-made watches, knives and world-famous chocolates. Or, if you prefer, join the optional tour to cable car ride to the top of Mount Pilatus, the mountain which dominates the city and offers incredible views of the surrounding area (seasonal availability).
Enjoy a free morning in Lucerne before checking out of your hotel. Afterwards, cruise across the tranquil waters of Lake Lucerne to Vitznau. Upon arrival in Vitznau, board a motor coach for a scenic drive to Zurich. Check into your hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.
Your morning walking tour of picturesque Zurich includes Grossmunster, St.Peter, with the largest church clock face in the world, Old Town, Town Hall and Fraumunster, which was fully renovated in 2004 and now offers an exceptional 360-degree view of Zurich. The afternoon and evening is free for you to explore the town on your own. Perhaps return to the Old Town, which offers engaging cafes, restaurants and a wealth of nightlife, or shop along Bahnhofstrasse and Niederdorf. Alternatively, take an optional excursion to the Rhine Falls.
After breakfast, bid farewell to Switzerland and transfer to the airport for your return flight home.