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Harz Mountains and Rhine Gorge

You are viewing the 2024 itinerary. Select your departure year
9 days From £1,795 £1,745 per person
4.4 stars(70 reviews)

Discover the charms of two of Germany’s beautiful regions.

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Save up to £150pp on selected Europe 2024 holidays when you book by 31st October 2023.

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Mobility Rating 2

2024 Tour code: HRJ24

About the tour

Join us on a discovery of two of Germany's most picturesque regions. We explore the characterful medieval villages and peaks of the Harz Mountains by historic narrow-gauge railway, then discover the natural beauty of the Rhine Gorge on a cruise of the loveliest section of the river, where the legendary Lorelei Rock still casts its spell.

Unforgettable Experiences

Journey on the steam-hauled Brocken Railway
Journey on the steam-hauled Brocken Railway
Two beautifully-restored vintage steam locomotives handle almost all of the passenger services on this picturesque route, taking us on a nostalgic journey up to Mount Brocken, the highest narrow-gauge railway in Germany.
Discover the Harz Mountains on the Selketal Railway
Discover the Harz Mountains on the Selketal Railway
Travelling on the oldest narrow-gauge railway in the Harz mountains, a steam-hauled journey through pretty valleys and green forests, following the scenic River Selke.
Cruise through the magnificent Rhine Gorge on a riverboat
Cruise through the magnificent Rhine Gorge on a riverboat
We sail through one of the most beautiful sections of the river and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Along the way we see medieval forts and castles, travel into deep river banks, draped with ancient forests and pass the legendary Lorelei Rock.
Step back in time on visits to beautiful, medieval towns
Step back in time on visits to beautiful, medieval towns
Based in Wernigerode in the Harz Mountains and Assmannshausen on the delightful Rhine, we visit the charming and historic towns of Quedlinburg – a UNESCO World Heritage city – Goslar, and St Goar.

What’s included


Day 1 - London to Cologne for an overnight stay

We meet our Tour Manager and the rest of our group of travellers at London St Pancras where we join the Eurostar to Brussels. Travelling in spacious Standard Premier Class we enjoy a light meal at our seats. On arrival in Brussels we change trains and travel in First Class to Cologne, where we spend a night. We arrive around mid-afternoon and the rest of your day is free to explore the historic riverside city of Cologne. The city's main attraction is its impressive cathedral with twin spires. You might like to join a riverboat cruise to see the sights from the Rhine River. This evening we dine together at our central hotel.

  • Dinner
  • Eurostar Light Meal
Day 2 – Goslar and our base in Wernigerode

Early this morning we are transferred to the rail station for a first class rail journey from Cologne to Hanover, where we start our journey through the Harz Mountains by coach. Our first stop is the scenic mountain town of Goslar, where there's free time to look around. With a history of over 1,000 years, Goslar was declared a World Cultural Heritage site due its 1,500 half-timbered houses from different periods. The Imperial Palace is one of the must-see buildings. Until 1988 the town was also an ore mining centre and at exactly 3pm each day, the clock in Goslar's Market Square chimes and wooden figures with a glockenspiel enact the story of the town's mining history. On the edge of town is the Rammelsberg mountain, a former UNESCO-protected mining site that's now an informative museum.

From Goslar we continue to charming Wernigerode, known since the 19th century as 'the colourful town of the Harz Mountains', and check into our hotel for four nights. This evening we join a welcome meeting before dinner at our hotel.

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 - The Selketal Railway and a free afternoon in Quedlinburg

After a leisurely breakfast we travel by coach from Wernigerode to Alexisbad, where we board the Selketal Railway to Gernrode. This is the oldest narrow gauge railway in the Harz mountains and we enjoy a nostalgic, steam-hauled journey, passing verdant forests and brooding mountains, following the course of the valley and the winding River Selke.

On arrival in the striking hillside town of Gernrode, we continue by coach to Quedlinburg, a UNESCO World Heritage city with a peaceful Romanesque church and perfectly preserved houses with red roofs. With a free afternoon here, you may like to walk from the Old Town up the castle hill to the 10th century Quedlinburg Castle, which has superb views over the Harz Mountains and the enchanting forests all around. There is a small tourist train running through the town and the tourist office also offers guided tours for this afternoon. We return to Wernigerode and dine at our hotel this evening.

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4 - The beautiful Brocken Railway

We journey into the deep forests of the beautiful Harz Mountains today, with breathtaking views across a blanket of trees and the national park on the Brocken Railway. This remarkable route is the highest narrow-gauge railway in Germany, at its steepest incline the gradient is 1 in 30.

On board, we enjoy an exclusive experience in our carriage, celebrating with a welcome drink before the train steams towards Mount Brocken.

We have free time at the summit of Mount Brocken, where you could visit the Brocken House Museum. Brocken was once rife with espionage, and you can learn about and see GDR bugging devices, and also take an interactive flight over the mountain.

  • Breakfast
Day 5 – Free day to explore Wernigerode

Today you have a full day stretching out ahead of you to enjoy as you wish. You may like to visit the local sights, such as Wernigerode's beautiful castle, perched on a forested hill above the town which can be reached by a quaint motorised train. Starting in the town centre, this tourist train departs every 30 minutes and travels up to the castle where there is also a restaurant. You can hop on and off at various points, and may like to combine a visit to Castle Wernigerode with a city tour and a visit to the wildlife park.

In the town's main cobbled square you'll see the 16th-century town hall, with its attractive half-timbered façade, surrounded by colourful townhouses. Another option is to take a ride on the Harz Narrow-Gauge Railway, the longest in the country, or visit the Museum für Luftfahrt und Technik, a popular aviation museum housing about 45 aircraft and more than 1,000 aerospace-related exhibits.

As you're dining independently this evening, you may like to book a rail-themed dinner at Restaurant 1835 inside the nearby Hotel Altora, which is popular with our customers and is recommended by our Tour Managers.

  • Breakfast
Day 6 – To Assmannshausen in the vineyards of the Rhine Valley

We bid farewell to the Harz Mountains this morning and set out on our journey to Assmannshausen in the Rhine Valley. This starts with a coach transfer to Hildesheim and continues by First Class Rail to Frankfurt. From this buzzing city, we continue by rail to Assmannshausen, a picture-postcard destination nestled among the vineyards of the Rhine Valley. We arrive in the afternoon and check into our traditional, family-run hotel for a three-night stay. Originally a 15th century wine tavern, this characterful half-timbered hotel is in the centre of the village, below a hillside of vineyards. This evening we dine at our hotel.

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 7 – Rhine Gorge cruise

After breakfast we are taken by coach to the riverside town of Boppard where we have time to look around before a relaxing Rhine cruise to St Goar. This scenic route takes us past medieval villages, fortresses and castles to St Goar, which is overlooked by the enchanting 13th Rheinfels Castle. On arrival, we are free to explore the town and maybe stop for lunch in a café or traditional restaurant.

In the early afternoon we return by boat to Assmannshausen, sailing through the most celebrated section of the UNESCO-listed Rhine Gorge. The river banks deepen here, and we are surrounded by dense forests and endless miles of green vineyards. During this passage we see the mythical Lorelei Rock, a beautiful site which has inspired folklore. The rock was once believed to be home to a beautiful nymph who would lure sailors with her heavenly voice.

This evening we enjoy dinner at our hotel.

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 8 – A day in delightful Assmannshausen or a nearby town

Today is our last day in the lovely Rhine Valley, and you are free to explore Assmannshausen or the surrounding area. The medieval village centre is remarkably well-preserved, crammed with timber-framed houses and crooked narrow streets.

A popular option for the day is to take a ride on the Niederwald cable car, which rises high above the vineyards. Or, you could visit one of the nearby wine estates, which produce some of Germany's most popular red wines, for a tasting. You could also take a chairlift or cable car gondola to charming Rüdesheim, a picture-book town, renowned for its excellent viticulture. Here, you could stroll along the cobbled street among quaint shops and wine bars, and maybe visit Siegfried's Mechanical Music Museum, to see and hear one of the world's largest collections of self-playing instruments, or take the town's cable car up over the vineyards for wonderful views of the region.

  • Breakfast
Day 9 - Homeward Bound

Following breakfast this morning, we transfer to Cologne by coach where we take our First Class seats aboard the train to Brussels with time to reflect on the highlights of our holiday. From here, we travel in spacious Standard Premier Class on the Eurostar with a light meal served at our seats enroute to London St Pancras.

  • Breakfast
  • Eurostar Light Meal

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.


Alte Bauernschänke Hotel, Assmannshausen

Alte Bauernschänke Hotel, Assmannshausen

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HKK Hotel Wernigerode, Wernigerode

HKK Hotel Wernigerode, Wernigerode

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Brocken Railway
ICE Train
Selke Valley Railway

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UK rail connections
Luggage Service


4.4 stars4.4 / 5 · 70 reviews

  1. 5 stars
  2. 4 stars
  3. 3 stars
  4. 2 stars
  5. 1 star

Alex Beaujean

5 stars

Submitted 27/Sep

Very interesting, varied and colourful experience.

Collected by Trustpilot

Elizabeth Bowerman

5 stars

Submitted 23/Sep

The trip was very enjoyable especially after the glorious weather we had it made the areas look really beautiful. The first day was long with all the travelling that took place. Full marks for, the staff at the Double Tree in Hannover who stayed on and produced quiet a lovely meal quite late at night. The bonus was the next day we were quite close to our second day destinations we meant we could get up reasonably late as we were not departing the hotel until 12.30pm. Couple of issues with the German trains the train to Hannover was delayed due to problems at Dortmund however luckily for us the train was re routed via another route to overcome the problem, it did delay our arrival into Hannover a bit but the Double Tree was so welcoming to us even though we arrived gone 9pm. Second issue we were booked on train to Frankfurt 1st class but due to technical issues the first calls carriages were not in operation, fortunately most of the passengers on the train shuffled around to allow our group to find seats to sit on. Stephen the tour director was excellent he came well prepared for the trip, he was very knowledgeable and it was useful he could speak German as the Harz area was less fluent in English than the Rhine Gorge. Stephen's trade mark red coat was an easy way to spot him at meeting points, however I did feel sorry for him as the weather was so hot for the time of year and he must have felt too hot at times in it. It was a very enjoyable trip in two beautiful areas of Germany.

Collected by Trustpilot


4 stars

Submitted 22/Sep

Lovely scenery, wonderful architecture, excellent tour manager.

Collected by Trustpilot

Eileen Brown

3 stars

Submitted 15/Jul

No luggage collection prior to trip. Poorly planned itinerary with an unnecessary journey to Mannheim meaning two very long days on trains. The air conditioning in our room did not work. At that stage a day at leisure would have been better rather than 2 subsequent days on trains again. The Brocken Railway disappointed in that we had no guide & no Royal coach having been taken off the itinerary. Visits to towns were very similar. The Hotel at Wernigrode had the audacity to charge for topping up the complimentary tray (with no milk on there anyway). Not very impressed with evening meal choices. Good range of restaurants in the town for eating out. It was a shame that the trip did not include a visit to the Castle. Hotel Assmanhausen rooms were not of a 4 Star standard. There was a huge difference in the rooms which were made available to us, some fortunate in having balconies, fridges, large ensuite bathroom while others were basic even though we were all paying the same price. One of the waiters in the hotel was very unwelcoming & brusque in his manner. Cruise trip on the Rhine would have been better getting on the ferry first and then travelling back by coach. The cable car & ski lift were really enjoyable. The Monument was impressive. The alternative trip to the Musical Museum was wonderful. Highly recommend. The wine tasting was okay. A lot of people. Would have been nicer as a small group. Some English translation on the wine displays would have been helpful. Despite all the shortcomings it was an enjoyable trip as the group really gelled together. Praise for our Guide Andrew who did a superb job.

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Mr. Tim Marfell

5 stars

Submitted 10/Jul

Trips and excursions interesting, 1st class travel where available, tour guide very good, hotels visited clean and comfortable. Would definitely travel with GRJ again.

Collected by Trustpilot

Brian Ives

5 stars

Submitted 23/Jun

Apart from the advanced luggage (non-) delivery service, this tour fully met all the expectations set by the online brochure and was enhanced by the very experienced, enthusiastic and exceedingly helpful tour manager John Grundy.

Collected by Trustpilot

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