Glacier Express & Rhine Cruise GER21
|Resort:||Glacier Express & Rhine Cruise GER21|
|Operator:||Great Rail Journeys|
Embark on one of the world’s finest rail adventures aboard the Glacier Express before descending the valley for a cruise on the spectacular Rhine. Enjoy picture-postcard river gorges, iconic cities, cheerful riverside towns and much more.
Days 1-2 – To Chur
Meet your Tour Manager at our dedicated Departure Office in London St Pancras to board the Eurostar service to Paris. We continue by train through France to Strasbourg where we overnight. On Day 2 you head to the station to continue your journey by rail to Chur in Switzerland
Day 3 – The Glacier Express and Zermatt
Today, we board the magnificent Glacier Express for a spectacular journey offering unparalleled views of the most awe-inspiring mountain ranges in the world. We spiral up the mountains, crossing enormous viaducts, burrowing through tunnels and rising above the clouds on our way to Zermatt, under the Matterhorn staying at the 4-Star Park Hotel Beau Site.
Day 4 – Gornergrat Mountain Railway
We enjoy another mountain railway journey today, venturing forth on the Gornergrat Mountain Railway. This cog rail trip covers 1,469m in its ascent of the Gornergrat, arriving at its summit where you can enjoy magical views of the surrounding mountains including the imposing, indomitable Matterhorn. We return later to Zermatt for a guided tour.
Day 5 – Boarding your ship
Today, we travel from Zermatt to Basel by rail, where you’ll be met by a Great Rail Journeys representative who will escort you to the ship, the Amadeus Silver III. This evening, we enjoy a welcome cocktail before a delicious Swiss themed first meal.
Day 6 – Strasbourg
Our vessel sails into the charming French city of Strasbourg today. Strasbourg’s position on the German-French border has seen it change hands between the two nations frequently throughout history. Because of this, Strasbourg represents the best of both cultures, with colourful half-timbered houses and cobbled streets.
You have two choices here. Your first option is a city tour of Strasbourg, uncovering its charm and history. Your second choice sees you travel into the famous Black Forest, passing through stunning fairytale panoramas.
Day 7 – Speyer and Heidelberg
We arrive in Speyer this morning, where there’s free time to explore. This town is home to one of the largest privately-owned collections of vehicles in the world, the Technik Museum Speyer. featuring an entire jumbo jet, army vehicles, emergency vehicles, a submarine and much more, this museum is a treasure trove of vehicular delights and is well worth a visit.
Later in the afternoon, we have an excursion to the delightful university town of Heidelberg where we are treated to a guided tour. Heidelberg is famous for a magnificent ruined castle that stands guard over the riverbanks, proudly looking over the town below.
Day 8 – Rdesheim and the Rhine Gorge
We sail into the classic German town of Rdesheim am Rhein, known for its formidable wine production, especially of the dry Riesling variety. Perhaps walk along the river during your free time here this morning, before our ship departs for Koblenz. This afternoon includes one of the highlights of the tour as we pass through the glorious Rhine Gorge, one of the most beautiful sections of the river and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Sheer banks rise, towering over the river below, covered in deep forests and miles of green vineyards, lending an almost ethereal feel to the waterway.
Our lunch today sees us tuck into a wonderful themed buffet with a suckling pig as the striking centrepiece, and several smaller dishes from this part of the world. We sail this evening into the enchanting city of Koblenz; you may wish to visit one of the famous wine taverns here.
Day 9 – The Lower Rhine and the Drachenfelsbahn
After an evening in Koblenz, we depart and discover the marvellous Lower Rhine, a stretch of river characterised by lush green meadows and postcard villages. Our Cruise Director provides us with the history of this area and highlights points of interest. In the afternoon, we dock in Koenigswinter, where we embark on a journey on the Drachensfelbahn railway. This rack railway rises into the mountains and high into the forests for wonderful views across the Rhine- Westphalia region of Germany.
Day 10 – Cologne
Arriving in Cologne this morning, we venture forth into this vibrant German city on a walking tour. We see the resplendent cathedral, a centuries-old building which survived 14 aerial hits during World War Two. We also wander through the many bustling squares and labyrinthine streets, seeing Romanesque town-houses. tonight is an opportunity to dress up in our finest as we enjoy a gala dinner with the captain.
Day 11 – Amsterdam and the Medemblik Steam Train
We arrive in Amsterdam this morning where we have a choice of two excursions, the first is a city tour of Amsterdam. One of the most popular of all the European cities, Amsterdam is as modern as it is historic, as young as it is old. From idyllic canals and large parks to contemporary art galleries and futuristic architecture, this is a city that boasts something for everyone. The second option is an excursion to Hoorn where we board the splendid Medemblik Steam Train and enjoy a nostalgic trip through enchanting Dutch scenery.
Day 12 – Homeward bound
After a buffet breakfast, we disembark the ship and here your cruise concludes. Make your way back to the railway station with your Tour Manager to board your train back to London St Pancras.