Castles & Vineyards Cruise
On the Moselle River to where France, Luxembourg and Germany meet
10 Days / 9 Nights
Including airfare, cruise and overnight in Frankfurt, Germany
Starting at $3899 per person based on double occupancy
Multiple 2013 Departure Dates
The scenic Moselle river winds its way through Germany on its way to Koblenz, where it joins the Rhine River. Much of this scenic river is flanked by steep hills, where some of Germany's best known wines are produced. These hillside vineyards are some of Germany's steepest.
Castles overlook many of the towns and villages; a reminder of the river's old and sometimes violent history.
"Little Venice" is the destination of this trip and the analogy hits the point. Saarburg is proud of its 1000 year history, a medieval past and vivacious present. Nestled in the midst of vineyards and forests within the triangle of Germany-France-Luxembourg, the heritage shows in many of their monuments.
The cultural and historic heritage will be a constant companion during this trip: from the Romans who settled here and left Porta Nigra in Trier, to medieval little towns and places with gingerbread houses, vineyards and the spectacular Saar river bend. A tour that combines highlights of two rivers and a comfortable way of exploring them with your floating hotel always there to meet you after an exciting day of exploring.
2013 Dates with Price options:
Double cabin below deck
Option 1: $3899 per person for departures on Apr 19 and Oct 11
Option 2: $3999 per person for departures on Apr 26, Sep 27 and Oct 4
Option 3: $4399 per person for departures on May 17, May 24, Jun 14, Sep 6, Sep 13 and Sep 20
Option 4: $4799 per person for departures on Jun 21, Jun 28, Jul 5, Jul 26, Aug 2, Aug 09, Aug 16, Aug 23, Aug 30
Upgrade to Upper Deck - $195 per person
Single supplement - Lower Deck - $450
Single Supplement - Upper Deck - $550
A surcharge may be required for travel within 14 days of booking due to availability of flights. Specific dates are subject to lodging and airfare availability.
A rustic, comfortable river boat with restaurant and saloon with small bar (air-conditioned). Partially roofed sun deck with seats and storage for bikes.
River Boat info:
- Length 68 m
- breadth 770 m
- Space for 66 guests
- Dutch flag and captaincy
- 14 cabins with air-condition (regulable) on the cabin deck/main deck (windows cannot be opened)
- 19 cabins on the upper deck/promenade deck (no air-condition, windows can be opened), only twin-bedded cabins (about 7 sqm, 2 separate beds), shower/toilet.
- Meals on board: good and plenty plain fare
- Crew 12
Day 1 (Fri) Depart JFK to Frankfurt, Germany
Day 2 (Sat) Koblenz: Arrival and embarkation
Arrival in Frankfurt and then transfer on shared van to Koblenz where you will be able to board the boat at 4pm.
The crew will welcome you on board. You will spend the evening and first night in Koblenz.
Kolblenz sits at the confluence of the Rhine and the Moselle rivers, and is encircled by four low mountain ranges. The 2000 year old city is graced with historic buildings, monuments, relaxing city squares, and river promenades.
Day 3 (Sun): Koblenz - Alken | Alken - Moselkern - Cochem
Gothic Reichsburg Castle and Martinskirche (St. Martin's Church) dominate the backdrop of the old and beautiful city of Cochem. Cochem sits amid a gorgeous landscape and the half-timbered homes and buildings offers present day evidence of it's old culture.
- Visit to the Reichsburg followed by a walking tour of the town
- Bike tour on your own: The bike tour starts Alken and brings you to Moselkern, and then on to Cochem. You can visit the Reichsburg and join a wine-tasting at a local winegrower - 27 km / 17 miles
Day 4 (Mon): Cochem - Zell on the Moselle
Zell on the Moselle is a charming city dotted with historic houses with steep gables, ornate village square fountains, and modern, Baroque and Gothic churches. It is a wine connoisseurs delight and a romantics destination.
- Walking tour of Zell
- Bike tour on your own: The bike tour will first take you to Beilstein, which you can explore during a short tour. Pass Europe's steepest vineyard at Bremmer Calmont. Today's tour ends in the wine village of Zell on the Moselle. - 35 km / 21 miles
Day 5 (Tues): Zell on the Moselle - Bernkastel-Kues
Bernkastel is said to be the most beautiful city on the Moselle. Its sister city, Kues, sits across the Moselle.
The inhibtants around Bernkastel have been producing wine for over 500 years. Here you will discover the beauty of Europe's steepest vineyards that grace the banks of the Moselle River. Enjoy the local speciality; world renown Riesling wine.
- Walking tour with wine tasting
- Bike the route on your own: The bike tour from Zell brings you to romantic Traben-Trarbach, where Jugendstil architecture shows its best side. After that, the middle aged market place of Bernkastel-Kues invites you for a rest. We will reach the ship in Kues after a tour through town. - 41 km / 25 miles
Day 6 (Wed): Bernkastel-Kues-Mehring
This is a good day to relax on board and enjoy the spectacular scenery of the Moselle. Enjoy a walk around Mehring.
- Bike the route on your own: Cycle tour to Neumagen-Dhron which is the oldest wine city of Germany. After the lunch break the tour continues to Mehring. - 32 km / 20 miles
Day 7 (Thurs): Mehring - Trier
Trier is a designated UNESCO site. It was once known as the second Rome, and boasts more Roman monuments than any other city in Germany, including the Imperial Baths, Emperor Constantine's Throne Room, and the Porta Nigra which was built around AD 200 and is the largest surviving city gate from ancient Roman times. Market Square's central fountain was built in 1595, and the market itself is said to be Germanys most magnificent square.
- 1 hour tour by minibus and a 1 hour walking tour
- Bike the route on your own: You will cycle via Pfalzel to Trier, where the ship is waiting for you. Trier is one of the oldest cities of Germany. Its Roman roots are still visible in impressive buildings as the Porta Nigra, the Konstantin basilica and the Amphitheatre. - 35 km / 21 miles
Day 8 (Fri): Trier - Saarburg | Saarburg - Mettlach - Saarburg
Sailing from Trier to Saarburg, also called "little Venice". In its center you will find a waterfall of 20 meters deep.
Don't forget to visit Villeroy & Boch Discovery center, one of the oldest manufacturers of fine china in Europe.
Saarburg is beautifully situated on the banks of the Saar River and is the center of the renowned wine region of the Saar. The Saarburg fortress towers about the town, which has been called a medieval jewel. Below, on the banks of the river, you can find narrow alleys, sometimes quite steep, where the homes of those who make their living on the river dwell. A spectaclar waterfall graces the center of the Old Town, and numerous bridges and half-timbered structures add to the charm of this remarkable city.
- Walking tour
- Bike the route on your own: Cycling from Saarburg to Mettlach. Optional visit to "Villeroy & Boch" and return to Saarburg. You may also decide to cycle from Trier to Saarburg. - 20-65 km / 12-41 m
Day 9 (Sat): Saarburg - Frankfurt
After breakfast you will disembark and travel by train/hotel van to your hotel near the Frankfurt airport. Overnight in a hotel in Frankfurt.
Day 10 (Sun): Return flight to New York
Transfer to the airport for your return flight.
- Roundtrip airfare from JFK, New York to Frankfurt
- 7-nights cruise on the Moselle and Saar Rivers, MS Patria (Comfort Class - larger cabins, no bunk beds)
- Breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily on cruise
- 1-night hotel in Frankfurt on return
- Roundtrip transfers from Frankfurt airport to departure point
- Port charges
- Hotel and air taxes
- Welcome drink
- Gratuities for service staff
- Any expenses of a personal nature like alcoholic beverages, mini bar in rooms, laundry and telephone bills etc. and anything not specifically mentioned as "includes"
- Meals where not included
- Beverages where not included
- Entrance fees and extras where not included
- Biking is optional - rental bikes available for additional fee of $110 for the entire tour.
- Helmets - rentals available or bring your own
- Bus/sightseeing excursions
- Travel insurance