Germany River Cruises
Covering 137, 846 sq miles, Germany stretches from the glorious Alps across the North European Plain to the North Sea and Baltic Sea. With a population of over 80 million it is the most populous country in the European Union and the second largest country in Europe. Germany shares borders with nine other European countries. The borders include Denmark in the north, Poland and the Czech Republic in the east, Austria and Switzerland in the south, France and Belgium around the southwest and Luxembourg and the Netherlands border the west. With a temperate seasonal climate, Germany has typically warm sunny summers and mild, cloudy winters, providing ideal weather for exploring and site seeing. Farther inland a more continental climate can be found, with the summers slightly hotter and the winters cooler.
Split into sixteen different states, Germany boasts more than 10,000 towns and cities, and has three main rivers running through it including the River Rhine, Elbe and the Danube and a vast number of smaller rivers such as the Moselle and Main. The river Rhine, Danube, Moselle and Main all are featured on Avalon cruises and 22 of Germany’s towns and cities are visited along the way. These include the bustling city of Munich, capital of Bavaria with highlights including the Olympic stadium, 1000ft high television tower and Nymphenburg Palace. Avalon passengers will be able to enjoy an excursion to the Bavarian Alps and view its garden like landscapes. It is here that King Ludwig’s fairytale castles, the famous Neuschwanstein Castle and also Linderhof Palace, a stunning masterpiece inspired by Pan’s Palace of Versailles can be found. Cologne, one of Germany’s largest cities is also a highlight on many of the Avalon itineraries. The town is abundant with old taverns, cafés and shops and is also home to the magnificent gothic cathedral with its soaring twin steeples dominating the skyline.
The quainter, quieter towns of Germany are also featured on our river cruises. Highlights include the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage site, the medieval town of Bamberg and the picturesque Bavarian village of Miltenberg. Along the river Rhine is the dramatic Rhine Gorge. This is an incredibly beautiful stretch of river that enables passengers to see the mythical Lorelei Rock. It is here that legend has it a beautiful maiden named Lorelei bewitched the hearts of sailors with her enchanted songs, luring them towards the rock to their doom.
The town of Rudesheim sits just after the Rhine Gorge and is the perfect example of a Rhine Valley wine town. In the heart of Rudesheim’s old town is the famous Drosselgasse and is full of beautifully decorated restaurants and live bands. Brass instruments and dance music can be heard throughout the summer in the many wine and open-air garden taverns.
Along the Moselle River is the lovely town of Cochem, known for the beautiful Reichburg Castle that stands at the top of a vine-clad hill, from where splendid views of Cochem town and the river valley below can be appreciated. The Moselle is an important wine-growing region and is most famous for the cultivation of the Riesling grape, producing Germany’s dry to sweet Riesling white wine.
On the approach to the Danube River sits Regensburg, one of Germanys best preserved medieval cities. Regensburg is full of architectural highlights such as the Old town hall and the gates to the Roman fort known as Porta Pretoria built in 179 AD. The capital of Upper Palatinate and the bustling university town Regensburg is one of Bavaria’s cultural centres. It is also home to Germany’s oldest restaurant, the 12th century Historische Wurstküche famous for serving traditional German sausage. A handful of cruises also take passengers to Germany’s Black Forest region, an area of unrivalled natural beauty, famous for its forest of thick pine trees, its cuckoo clocks and Black Forest Gateaux.