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Journey Snapshot

Activity level: Level 1 Involves some moderate physical activity over short periods of time, such as short walks, on relatively level surfaces and gentle terrain.
Destination: EUROPEAN CHRISTMAS MARKETS RHINE RIVER CRUISE
Duration: 8 days, 7 nights
Flight information: Please arrange your flights to arrive in Amsterdam, Holland in time for check in at 3pm on Day 1. Please arrange your flights home from Basel, Switzerland on Day 8.
Pickup location: Amsterdam port

Overview

Choose your own departure date for your group.

Travel the legendary canals of Amsterdam, through the fabled Black Forest region and into Basel on an enchanting 7 night river cruise which is filled with alpine vistas, beautiful cityscapes and glorious Christmas markets.

Enjoy free-flowing red & white wines from Europe's great wine regions, beer & soft drinks with every lunch and dinner on board. In Amsterdam you board your luxurious river cruise ship as you embark upon an enchanting 7-night Rhine River cruise that takes you through the fabled Black Forest region and the Alsace region. You will also visit Heidelberg and Cologne, famous for its majestic Cathedral and bustling Christmas markets. Conclude your winter adventure in Basel after your festive food, wine and Christmas markets holiday.

Itinerary

Itinerary summary:

Day 1 - Amsterdam, Embarkation and Welcome Dinner
Day 2 - Amsterdam, Canal Cruise & City Tour
Day 3 - Cologne, City tour & Cathedral Visit, Visit Christmas Markets
Day 4 - Rüdesheim, Siegfried’s Music Museum, Visit Christmas Market
Day 5 - Speyer, Medieval Speyer tour OR half day excursion to Heidelberg
Day 6 - Strasbourg, Walking tour and visit Christmas Markets
Day 7 - Breisach, Riquewihr walking tour OR Breisach & Freiburg excursion
Day 8 - Basel, Disembarkation and home

OPTIONAL EXTRA: 2-NIGHTS AMSTERDAM PRE-CRUISE AND 2 NIGHTS LUCERNE PLUS 2 NIGHTS ZURICH POST-CRUISE

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Full Itinerary

Day 1 - Arrive in Amsterdam, Holland and embark cruise ship AmaMora

Arrive in charming Amsterdam and board your luxurious river cruise ship. Meet your fellow travellers tonight at the Welcome Dinner.

Accommodation: AmaMora
Meals Included: Dinner on board

Day 2 - Amsterdam

After breakfast, your tour of Amsterdam begins with a scenic canal cruise through the city known as the “Venice of the North.” See the beautiful homes that line the water, the fabled Skinny Bridge, and the famous Anne Frank House. Then enjoy a panoramic city tour, where you will see the great landmarks of Amsterdam, including the brewery windmill. Afterwards, enjoy some free time to explore Amsterdam on your own before returning to the ship. We depart early this afternoon for Germany.

Accommodation: AmaMora
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board

Day 3 - Cologne, Germany

The ship arrives in Cologne around lunch time. You will have a guided tour of the city, strolling through the Old Town and Cathedral Square, and visiting the fabled 13th- century Gothic Cathedral. During your free time, browse the festive Christmas Market in Cathedral Square – one of Europe’s best – or explore the city on your own. The ship cruises overnight.

Accommodation: AmaMora
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board

Day 4 - Rhine Gorge to Rudesheim 

This morning, we cruise through the fascinating Rhine Gorge, passing dozens of castles and the infamous Lorelei Rock. Arrive in Rüdesheim in time to visit the historic Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum and its collection of robotic and self-playing musical instruments, made during the 18th- 20th centuries. Explore the town’s Christmas Market during your free time, or the Drosselgasse, a narrow alley lined with wine taverns and restaurants. The ship departs very late tonight and cruises to Speyer.

Accommodation: AmaMora
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board

Day 5 - Speyer to Heidelberg

Arrive in Speyer around lunchtime. Speyer is one of Germany’s oldest cities, known for its Cathedral, churches, and the Altpörtel – a 13th-century gate tower. Choose either a tour of Medieval Speyer or a half day excursion to Heidelberg, where you will visit the red-walled Castle and its Great Vat, a 49,000-gallon 18th-century wine cask, and see beautiful views of the Neckar Valley and Heidelberg below. You will have free time to wander what is said to be the longest pedestrian shopping street in Germany, the “Haupstrasse,” or some of the city’s colourful Christmas Markets. This evening, the ship cruises to Strasbourg, France

Accommodation: AmaMora
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board

Day 6 - Strasbourg, France

Capital of the Alsace region in France, Strasbourg is situated on the Ill River, where it flows into the Rhine on the German border. Enjoy a panoramic tour that will take you past the Orangery, the town’s oldest park, the European Parliament and the Place de la Republique. Afterwards, explore on foot with a walking tour of the lovely “La Petite France” neighbourhood, where you will see the Gothic cathedral with its famous astronomical clock. You will also visit Strasbourg’s famous Christmas market – said to be the oldest and best in all of France. The remainder of the day is yours to spend as you wish. The ship moors overnight in Strasbourg.

Accommodation: AmaMora
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board

Day 7 - Breisach, Germany

The ship arrives in Breisach after lunch today. Choose one of two exciting excursions: A visit to Riquewihr, a picturesque town that looks much as it did back in the Middle Ages, or a walking tour of Breisach and Freiburg. Breisach is a beautiful town that houses one of Europe’s largest wine cellars. In Freiburg, you will visit the historical city centre and the Freiburg’s Münster, a Gothic cathedral constructed of red sandstone. Rejoin the ship in Breisach. This evening, we set sail for Basel, Switzerland.

Accommodation: AmaMora
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board

Day 8 - Disembark and transfer to Basel Airport to depart for home.

Bid Farewell to Basel, Switzerland and transfer to Basel airport for the homeward flights you have arranged. Alternatively why not extend your stay in Lucerne and Zurich.

Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: none

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More information

What's includedWhat's not includedImportant information

What's included

• 7 nights deluxe cruise accommodation in an outside stateroom - 82% of the staterooms have French balconies
• Gourmet dining with all meals included during your cruise
• Free-flowing red & white wines from Europe's great wine regions, beer & soft drinks with every lunch and dinner on board
• Cocktail Reception, Welcome Dinner & Captain's Gala Dinner
• Life enriching tours and excursions daily with personal headset included
• Entertainment on demand in all staterooms featuring free high-speed Internet access, hit Hollywood movies, extensive music library and English language TV stations
• Complimentary Wi-Fi access on board
• Terry bathrobes and white-on-white plush bedding in all staterooms
• Bottled water in every stateroom replenished daily
• Special highlights including lectures, theme dinners, cooking demonstration, on board music performances and afternoon/evening piano music
• Bicycles to explore on your own & guided bicycle tours
• Services of professional Cruise Manager. An additional Tour escort from The Big Journey Company will accompany the group if the group has 14 Diamond member passengers or more joining this cruise.
• All English language on board in a non-smoking environment (smoking permitted only on the Sun Deck)
• Airport transfers are included with the purchase of airfare from The Big Journey Company.
• All local taxes

What's not included

• Flights into Amsterdam and departing from Basel are not included.
• Port Charges: Additional £112 per person additional
• We can offer transfers in Amsterdam from ship/airport for £30 per person
• We can offer transfers in Basel from ship/airport for £55 per person
• Health and travel insurances.
• Any optional additional excursions you wish to take.
• Items of a personal nature.
• Spa treatments
• Speciality restaurant fees
• Increases in government taxes and fuel surcharges prior to departure.
• Visa entry (if required)
• Transfers to and from the ship (unless flights are purchased from the Big Journey Company).

Important information

  • Please arrange your flights to arrive in Amsterdam, Holland in time for check in at 3pm on Day 1. Please arrange your flights home from Basel, Switzerland on Day 8. 
  • We can offer transfers in Amsterdam from ship/airport for £30 per person
  • We can offer transfers in Basel from ship/airport for £55 per person
  • Official embarkation time is 3pm. If you arrive earlier, you may check your luggage on board and then explore the city at your leisure.
  • Dinner is usually in 2 sittings one at 7 and another at 7.30 in free seating (i.e. you don’t need to reserve your tables)
  • Official disembarkation time is 9 a.m. It may be possible to disembark earlier if the ship is moored in the location you are disembarking in. You may disembark the ship later than 9am providing you have vacated your stateroom and checked out before 9 a.m.
  • Cancellation 90 – 0 days prior to departure cancellation fee is 100%. It is your responsibility to ensure the correct travel insurance in place to protect you against the need to cancel your holiday. Deposits are non-refundable and final payments are due 14 weeks prior to departure.
  • Further terms and conditions apply and will be provided upon request or at the time of booking. The Big Journey Company reserves the right to withdraw any offer prior to accepting a reservation request. This does not affect your statutory rights. This offer is subject to availability and space is limited.

The big journey promise

The big journey company was set up with one goal in mind, to share our passion for inspirational cultures, destinations and experiences. Over the last 10 years we have had the privilege to escort thousands of travellers on awe inspiring and sometimes life changing journeys. Our promise to every guest who joins us is that we will do everything possible to make sure your journey not only exceeds expectations but delivers at least one moment of true amazement.

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© The Big Journey Company 2016 - 2019. All rights reserved.
Holiday tours are operated by The Big Journey Company Limited. Registered in England. Registered office: Marron Bank, Branthwaite, Cumbria, CA14 4SZ. Registered number: 6532140. VAT number: 290797457. The Big Journey Company Limited is a member of The Travel Trust Association member number U5675 and holds an Air Travel Organiser’s License number T7282.

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