The festivities of Christmas on the Rhine
Explore the fascinating towns and stunning scenery along the Rhine on a festive rail-cruise holiday. From the comfort and luxury of the 5-star MS Amadeus Silver III, you can experience an indulgent Christmas holiday on one of Europe's most beautiful waterways.
We travel by Eurostar to Brussels after meeting at our St Pancras Departure Office. From Brussels, we continue to Cologne, where we transfer to the 5-Star Amadeus Silver III, and enjoy a cocktail reception and dinner this evening.
This morning we arrive in Koblenz, situated at the northern end of the scenic Rhine Gorge, and the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle rivers. During your time here you can choose to join an optional guided walking tour, discovering the sights of the city including the 'Deutsches Eck', the monument marking the point where the mighty rivers meet. After lunch we spend the afternoon cruising along the magnificent Rhine Gorge towards Rüdesheim, passing the famous Lorelei Rock and sleepy villages, overlooked by brooding hilltop castles.
This morning we arrive in Speyer, an imperial city with a famous Romanesque Cathedral. An optional guided walking tour gives you chance to see the highlights of Speyer including its cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The cathedral is of great importance in Germany, and is the final resting place of eight German emperors and kings. You may also wish to take in the attractive architecture of the Maximilianstrasse. We stay in Speyer until the early hours, so those wishing to attend mass after our on-board Christmas Eve celebrations and festive activities can do so.
We spend the morning of Christmas Day gently sailing towards Strasbourg, giving you the opportunity to simply relax, take part in the on-board festivities, and enjoy the on-board amenities. You could indulge in a massage, or just relax in the panoramic lounge and watch the passing scenery. At lunchtime we reach the French city of Strasbourg, located on the west bank of the Rhine. Steeped in heritage, Strasbourg's town centre enjoys UNESCO World Heritage status and is a delight to explore. Admire the sights independently, or perhaps join the optional city tour. Among the city's many highlights are the delightful Old Town, the imposing, magnificent Gothic Cathedral and the stunning Petite France quarter, an area of picturesque half-timbered houses, dotted with mills and crisscrossed by canals from the River Ill.
After a relaxing morning on board, we arrive in Mainz, a Roman city famous for its marvellous Romanesque Cathedral of St Martin. Here you may choose to join an optional guided walking tour, taking in the narrow streets of the old town, overlooked by the towers of the mighty cathedral. The tour also includes a visit to the Gutenberg Museum, which tells the story of Johannes Gutenberg, who invented the movable type printing press in the 1450s. Tonight, we enjoy the Captain's Gala Dinner on board.
This morning we arrive in Cologne, where you have the full day to discover this wonderful city. Cologne is Germany's fourth largest city and one of the oldest, having been founded by the Romans in 38BC. You have time here to explore independently, giving you a wide range of varied options for your time in the city. Cologne boasts many museums that are exciting to explore, including the truly superb chocolate museum, and the Farina House 'Eau de Cologne Museum'. The city is also home to a selection of beautiful Romanesque churches, as well as its majestic Gothic Cathedral - which is the largest such cathedral in northern Europe and a UNESCO World Heritage site. After a day exploring the city, perhaps take a stroll through Cologne's Old Town, which has been carefully restored to its pre-war appearance. Here you can admire the pretty pastel-coloured houses, as the narrow streets wind down towards the Rhine Promenade. Alternatively, perhaps visit a traditional 'brauhaus' for a 'kölsch', the local Cologne beer.
We disembark the ship this morning and make the short transfer to Cologne station by coach. Here we join the high-speed rail service to Brussels. On arrival in the Belgian capital we connect with the Eurostar service back to London. Travelling in Standard Premier Class, we enjoy a light meal and drinks on board before our arrival at St Pancras International.
Please note that while every departure of this tour will feature the same excursions, the order may differ from that shown above.
Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.
An escorted experience and all travel arrangements
Comfortable accommodation in your destination
Delicious meals included
Exciting excursions and free time to explore
Enhancing your tour
The festivities of Christmas on the Rhine