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Glacier Express & Treasures of the Rhine

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20242025
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NEW Tour & Cruise

Discover the beautiful Rhine valley on our brand new leisurely planned itinerary featuring daytime sailing and a journey on the iconic Glacier Express.

2024 Tour code: RXR24

About the tour

This beautifully scenic, easy-paced cruise takes us to the amazing towns and cities of the River Rhine. Sailing by the most enchanting landscapes during daylight, we don't miss a thing. Discover historic Heidelberg and medieval Strasbourg along with the sensational vistas of the glorious Rhine Gorge.

From Cologne, we sail upstream to explore the charming town of Koblenz, enjoy a guided tour of stunning Heidelberg, and wander Strasbourg's winding alleys lined with half-timbered houses. Along the way we stop in lovely Rüdesheim to see the famous Drosselgasse alley and soak up amazing scenery as we leisurely cruise. Our amazing experience ends with one of the world's finest rail adventures aboard the legendary Glacier Express and 3 nights in alpine Zermatt and Chur.

Unforgettable Experiences

Cologne
Cologne
Discover the lively streets of Cologne and its Gothic cathedral, a timeless masterpiece.
Rhine Gorge
Rhine Gorge
Sail the enchanting, Romantic Rhine Gorge, a UNESCO World Heritage site with spellbinding castles, verdant forests, vineyard-clad slopes, and the dramatic Lorelei Rock.
Drachenfels Railway
Drachenfels Railway
Reach the summit of the majestic Drachenfels on the exhilarating Drachenfelsbahn cog railway to enjoy the splendid views.
Heidelberg
Heidelberg
Visit the ‘Jewel of Germany’, Heidelberg on a guided tour, delving into the highlights of this picturesque riverside city.
Rüdesheim
Rüdesheim
Explore Rüdesheim on a tour through the vineyards aboard a land train and see the famous Drosselgasse alley.
The Black Forest
The Black Forest
Venture into the Black Forest to witness stunning fairytale panoramas and discover Strasbourg’s grand architecture.
Glacier Express
Glacier Express
Journey through stunning mountain scenery on the renowned Glacier Express and enjoy some of the most sensational views of the Matterhorn on the Gornergrat Mountain Railway.
Zermatt
Zermatt
Stay in idyllic Zermatt, waking to views of the mighty Matterhorn mountain.

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - To Cologne where we board our luxurious ship

Our holiday begins this morning as we meet at London St Pancras before boarding the Eurostar. In the lively city of Cologne, we board our magnificent ship and settle into our home on the river. Our friendly crew warmly greet us with a welcome cocktail before dinner.

Includes
  • Dinner
Day 2 – Exploring Cologne

After breakfast, we enjoy a leisurely tour of Cologne and wander through its vibrant streets and squares. We admire the Romanesque townhouses before visiting the city's impressive Gothic cathedral which is the largest in Northern Europe. The intricate spires and magnificent stained glass windows of this UNESCO-listed landmark are captivating as we marvel at the grand architecture.

Later this morning, we set off on our first sail. Drifting upstream past Bonn, we begin to see the first signs of lush green hills as we arrive in the enchanting town of Königswinter. Here, we journey on the Drachenfelsbahn railway. This fabulous cog railway rises high into the forests, passing the fairytale Drachenfels castle - which is said to have been the inspiration for the castle in Disney's 'Sleeping Beauty'. We experience wonderful views across the Rhine-Westphalia region of Germany as we climb higher. We then head back to our cruise ship for dinner onboard.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 3 - Picturesque Koblenz and the magical Rhine Gorge

This morning, we continue our relaxing cruise. Drifting through the enchanting Middle Rhine, we pass by riverbanks lined with lush green meadows and pretty villages on our way to Koblenz. When we arrive, your morning is at leisure to explore the quaint, friendly town located at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle rivers. We recommend strolling to Deutsches Eck where you'll be surrounded by inspiring vistas including the mighty Ehrenbreitstein Fortress.

After lunch, we enjoy a highlight of our cruising experience - sailing through the romantic Rhine gorge. This section of the Rhine is renowned for its spectacular views. The riverbanks plunge deeper here, and we wind around bends surrounded by endless miles of lush green vineyards, ancient castles, and picturesque riverside towns. It's also one of the narrowest points of the river with one of the strongest currents.

As we sail, we hear the fascinating story of the legendary Lorelei Rock which soars almost 500 feet out of the water. This monument has been the inspiration for countless myths and legends, and we hear of them as we sail by. Later this afternoon, we arrive in the captivating town of Rüdesheim, famous for its delicious white wine, especially the dry Riesling variety. We get to know the history and stories of the renowned wine town during a guided tour aboard a land train

After dinner, you could discover more of Rüdesheim. The evening is a wonderful time to experience the famous Drosselgasse alley and enjoy a drink at one of its enticing wine bars.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4 - Traditional Heidelberg and lovely Speyer

After a morning of relaxed sailing, we step ashore in Speyer this afternoon You could choose to join an excursion to the picturesque university town of Heidelberg, known for its lovely Old Town and stunning riverfront. Here, we enjoy a guided tour including a visit to the magnificent ruined, red sandstone castle that towers over the city, providing amazing views of the surrounding forests, river, and cityscape. If you'd prefer to stay in Speyer, you can take in the sights of this historic German city and its cathedral at leisure before dinner this evening.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5 - A scenic sail to Strasbourg

Today we enjoy a full day cruise to the French city of Strasbourg. Relax onboard as we pass diverse landscapes and fantastic natural beauty along the Rhine. We arrive in Strasbourg early this later this afternoon, you could experience the city's unique character at leisure.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6 - The enchanting Black Forest or striking Strasbourg

Today you have a choice of two wonderful excursions. The first is a magical trip into the Black Forest, to witness stunning fairytale panoramas. Experience the beauty of Germany's largest nature park filled with rolling hills, picturesque villages, dense forests, and meadows dotted with wildflowers. As you explore this fairytale setting, you'll learn about the enchanting history and folklore of the region.

Alternatively, you could enjoy a city tour of Strasbourg. The city sits on the French-German border and blends the best of the two cultures, with colourful half-timbered houses and cobbled streets. On our tour, we visit the cathedral and the quaint La Petite France district. Later this afternoon, you're at leisure in Strasbourg until dinner this evening. Discover the city's fascinating history, admire its grand architecture and experience its unique character at your own pace.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7 - To wonderful Zermatt

We enjoy our last breakfast onboard this morning before we disembark in Strasbourg. From here, we journey the scenic rail route to Zermatt. Here, we check into our wonderful hotel for two nights in this stunning, car-free mountain village. Sitting at the heart of the Swiss Alps, it has wonderful views of the surrounding alpine peaks including the mighty, Matterhorn mountain.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 8 - The beautiful Gornergrat Mountain Railway

A journey on the Gornergrat Mountain Railway awaits us today. This cog railway trip ascends the Gornergrat, to its summit - the second-highest railway in Europe. As we reach the top, stunning views of glaciers, snow-capped peaks, and valleys below are revealed. From here, we enjoy magical views of the surrounding mountains including the imposing Matterhorn.

After lunch surrounded by the views of Gornergrat, we return to Zermatt and discover more of this wonderful resort on a guided tour. Strolling through the traditional streets we're surrounded by wooden chalets and shops selling traditional Swiss products as our guide shares the history of Zermatt giving us a deeper understanding of the beautiful resort. The rest of your day is at leisure to enjoy the scenery and tranquillity.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9 - The iconic Glacier Express and charming Chur

Today, we board the magnificent Glacier Express. Our panoramic journey takes us through undeniably Swiss scenes of green meadows, dense, evergreen forests and snow-capped mountains, ambling along the beautiful Rhine Valley aboard 'The Slowest Express Train in the World'. We spiral up the mountains, crossing vast viaducts, burrowing through tunnels and rising above the clouds on our way to Chur.

As we arrive and check into our hotel, you can explore the rich history, culture, and sights of Switzerland's oldest village, before dinner this evening. Wander the Altstadt - the Old Town - to discover the authentic restaurants and relaxed bars that add to the town's lovely atmosphere.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 10 - Homeward bound

After breakfast, it's time to bid farewell to lovely Chur. We make our way to the railway station and head towards Paris where we catch Eurostar bound for London St Pancras. Here, we say goodbye to new friends and fellow travellers.

Includes
  • Breakfast

Additional information

Departure times

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.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Trains

Drachenfels Railway
Eurostar
The Glacier Express
Gornergrat Mountain Railway

Ship

MS Amadeus Star

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Cruise in Europe 2024

Cruise in Europe 2024

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