|Travel by Rail|
|3 Included Excursions|
Discover the charms of the Rhine, as we cruise through Germany, France and Switzerland; along with the natural beauty of Alsace. The region of Alsace has changed possession between Germany and France a number of times over the past few centuries.
This is reflected in the culture of the region, which is a unique blend of the two.
Strasbourg typifies this blend and the surrounding countryside is home to a number of ‘Route des Vins’ which dot the area with carefully nurtured vineyards and picture-postcard villages.
You will be staying on the A-ROSA Flora ship with a number of fantastic amenities including, a sun deck, restaurant, lounge bar and dance floor and a whirlpool and outdoor spa area.
Day One: UK to Cologne, embark onto ship and cruise to Mainz
We take the Eurostar from St Pancras to Belgium, where we’ll transfer onto a train to Cologne, where there will be a coach transfer to the port. Cologne is known for its incredible Gothic architecture, the most impressive sights being the immense cathedral and the huge number of fantastic churches that dot the city. There we will embark onto the A-ROSA FLORA before sailing overnight to Mainz. (D)
Day Two: Mainz to Kehl (near Strasbourg)
Arriving in Mainz in the late morning you’ll have plenty of time to explore this quaint town. The old town area takes you back to a time when the city was an important part of the Holy Roman Empire. The area has a number of half-timbered medieval houses, a beautiful Baroque church and of course Mainz’s world famous cathedral. Join our optional tour of this historic city, famous as birthplace of the printing press and home to the Gutenberg Museum. We’ll depart from Mainz in the evening to sail overnight onto Kehl. (B,L,D)
Day Three: Kehl (near Strasbourg)
We will arrive in Kehl in the morning, from where you will be able to take a transfer into the city of Strasbourg, located just over the river. Picturesque 'Petite France' has a fairy-tale quality; with timbered buildings adorned with colourful flowers. The stunning pink sandstone of Strasbourg Cathedral is quite unique and the intricate interior carvings are captivating. Located between two rivers the traditional way to get around Strasbourg was along the many waterways that link them, take an optional guided tour of Strasbourg by boat cruise to see these beautiful waterways up close. We will be mooring in Kehl overnight, giving you the opportunity to see the city and its waterways by night when they look even more magical! Use the evening to sample one of the many local beers and wines in a bar overlooking the beautiful city. (B,L,D)
Day Four: Kehl (near Strasbourg) to Basel
This morning we enjoy an included excursion along the ‘Route des Vins’ to Riquewihr, a romantic medieval village which looks today exactly as it did in the 16th century. We enjoy a tour of a local vineyard with an included wine tasting. After lunch we leave Kehl and continue our cruise sailing overnight to Basel. During the afternoon you’ll have ample opportunity to take in the amazing countryside of the Alsace as we cruise past pretty towns and villages, magnificent green landscapes and grand historic chateaus. (B,L,D)
Day Five: Basel to Breisach
After breakfast we arrive in Basel. We enjoy an included excursion to beautiful Lucerne with its medieval frescoed buildings, charming narrow streets, decorative fountains and numerous pavement cafes. Explore the city's many attractions, such as the beautiful Chapel Bridge, the octagonal Water Tower and Lucerne's Old Town. Or if you want to stay in Basel you can find a myriad of things to do including exploring the city’s medieval centre, its Romanesque cathedral and its renaissance town hall. During early evening we depart Basel and sail along the Rhine to Breisach. (B,L,D)
Day Six: Breisach to Koblenz
We arrive in Breisach early morning. Spend time at leisure and stroll around the town to glimpse views of Hagenbach Tower, the beautiful cathedral and the whimsical Jugglers’ Fountain. Or join our optional excursion to Freiburg. Known as the ‘jewel of the Black Forest, the city is famous for its wine, its cathedral and the small canals that line the streets of the old town. We depart from Breisach after lunch and our cruise continues overnight towards Koblenz. (B,L,D)
Day Seven: Koblenz to Cologne
Cruising along the Rhine this afternoon we arrive at Koblenz, set at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers, overlooked by the majestic Ehrenbreitstein Fortress. Take a walk through the town and admire its cultural buildings, monuments and charming alleyways. Join us on an optional guided tour of the city to learn more of the history of this strategically important region and take a trip to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress for a fantastic view of the city. We depart in the late evening so enjoy a stroll along the river, visit the stunning gothic cathedral or simply relax and try the local beer, ‘Kolsch’. We depart Koblenz and head back along the river to our final port of call at Cologne. (B,L,D)
Day Eight: Disembark in Cologne and travel to UK
We arrive in Cologne in the early morning, where we’ll disembark from the ship and transfer to railway station to travel back to the UK via Belgium. (B)
FREE drinks on board
FREE drinks on board including beer, fine wine, spirits, mineral bottled water, fruit juice, soft drinks, speciality coffee and teas.
MS A-ROSA FLORA
Alsace and Wine Route
We take an excursion along the Alsace wine route today. Sit back and relax as we travel through stunning scenery, with famous vineyards on all sides. Calling at picturesque Riquewihr, in France's lovely Alsace region, famous for the Riesling and other great wines produced here. This romantic village medieval village looks today exactly as it did in the 16th century and enjoys a scenic location, among the Vosges Mountains.
Excursion to Lucerne
We take a visit to beautiful Lucerne, one of the most scenic cities in the world located at the heart of central Switzerland , full of medieval frescoed buildings, charming narrow streets, decorative fountains and numerous pavement cafes. Explore at leisure to take in the city's many attractions, such as the beautiful Chapel Bridge, the octagonal Water Tower and Lucerne's Old Town. One of the most famous sights is the Kapellbrucke, or the Chapel Bridge, a magnificent spectacle, built in 1333 it is Europe’s oldest covered bridge and contains a number of paintings dating back to the 17th century.
Full day Strasbourg
Soak up the views today as we cross the border travelling into the Alsace region of France, to visit the beautiful city of Strasbourg. Admire the wonderful Gothic cathedral and enjoy a stroll around the old town’s charming alleyways, overlooked by the traditional half-timbered houses.
Excursion to Freiburg
We travel to the old town of Freiburg, known as the gateway to the southern Black Forest and home to the magnificent 'Muster', a dark red sandstone Cathedral, which has a wonderful daily market outside, where it is possible to buy local produce and goods. The beautifully preserved Old Town is notable for the small canals that run adjacent to the streets and the two original city gates which still stand where they have for centuries.
Historic Koblenz And Ehrenbreitstein Fortress
Get to know one of the oldest towns of Germany on our guided walking tour around the historical Old Town. Koblenz has a long history that spans some 2,000 years, it owes its name to the Romans, who settled here and called it ‘castellum apud confluentes’ which roughly translates as ‘castle at the confluence of the rivers’. Join us as we explore the charming and romantic streets between the St. Castor’s Basilica and "Liebfrauenkirche" (Church of Our Beloved Lady). Of course, the sightseeing tour would not be complete without a visit to the Monument of Emperor Wilhelm I at "Deutsches Eck" (German Corner), in 1945 damage was caused to the statue of Emperor Wilhelm I, which had stood here since 1897. It wasn’t until 1993 that a new statue was inaugurated and today it is a popular viewing platform for tourists. We also see the town’s landmark, the "Schängel" Fountain in the courtyard of the present Town Hall.
We then ascend by cable car from Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer to the impressive Ehrenbreitstein Fortress, which rises 118 meters above the Rhine river, offering fantastic views over Koblenz and the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle at "Deutsches Eck" (German Corner). The Fortress is Europe’s second largest preserved fortress behind Gibraltar and was constructed by the Prussians between 1817 and 1828, however, its origin dates back to the first century AD. The fortress is home to the Rhineland-Palatinate State Museum, with its permanent exhibition on photography, the “Greif” cannon - once the largest in the world and an exciting collection of technical relics. The small climb to the top of the new observation platform is rewarded with breathtaking views of the distant Eifel Mountains on a clear day. We descend by cable car.
Mainz and the Gutenburg Museum
We’ll take a guided walking tour of this incredibly historic city. The symbol of Mainz is the Mainzer Dom, an imposing Romanesque cathedral, more than 1000 years old that dominates the skyline of the city. Just behind the cathedral is the old town which has a beautiful Baroque church and a number of well-preserved medieval houses. Mainz’s most famous son is Johannes Gutenberg, who was named as one of TIME’s people of the millennium in 1992 for inventing the moveable type printing press. Our tour will end with a visit to the museum honoring his life and work. Here you’ll be able to learn about the printing process and 500 years of the history of print as well as viewing two original copies of the Gutenberg bible, the first mass produced printed book, of which only 49 copies remain.