Christmastime in Alsace & Germany (Northbound) 2019

5 day River Cruise Basel to Wiesbaden

Cruise WFZ

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Overview

Note: Christmas markets usually operate from late November until the third week in December, depending on location.

Note: Christmas markets usually operate from late November until the third week in December, depending on location.

Itinerary

Avalon has designed included activities with a choice of experiences. We invite you to select the tours, activities, and events that interest you most, so you can experience your cruise your way. There are three types of included shore excursion on every Europe cruise:

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Classic

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Day 1 Frankfurt - Wiesbaden (Embarkation)

  • Meals included:
  • Dinner

Travel to Frankfurt where you will be met on arrival and transferred to your ship in Wiesbaden. Meet your crew at an evening welcome reception before setting sail along the Main.

Day 2 Mannheim

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Included today: Excursion to Heidelberg. This morning, an excursion takes you to Heidelberg, home to the oldest university in Germany, which was founded in 1386. Visit the imposing ruins of Heidelberg castle, towering magnificently over the city and among the most important Renaissance structures north of the Alps. You'll also see the famed Great Vat, the "World's Largest Wine Barrel." At nearly 23 feet high and 28 feet wide, the cask holds over 58,000 gallons of wine and has a dance floor built on top of it! At this time of year, an ice rink is set up at the foot of the castle, and stalls offer Glühwein, Bratwurst, and other tasty treats. The Christmas market itself is scattered over five town squares, and you'll find a wide array of crafts and regional delicacies. Rejoin your ship in Mannheim, and the afternoon is yours to do as you please.There is plenty of free time to shop for Christmas decorations or gifts at the Mannheim Christmas market.

Day 3 Strasbourg

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Included today: Guided sightseeing. Situated on the border of France and Germany, Strasbourg blends the cultures of both countries in a delightful way. As capital of the Alsace region and seat of the Council of Europe and European Parliament, it is, without a doubt, an important city that manages to retain its historic charm. In fact, on your guided walking tour you will discover Europe at its most quintessential. Visit the monumental red-sandstone gothic cathedral with its ancient murals, stained-glass windows, and fascinating astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France district, home to half-timbered houses, quaint shops, inviting bistros, and a waterfront promenade. Also spend time exploring Place Kléber, a large historic square in the heart of the city, and Place Gutenberg in the heart of medieval Strasbourg, which features a statue of the inventor of the printing press. Dating back to 1570, the traditional Christmas market is one of the oldest and finest in Europe. Located around Place de la Cathédrale and Place Broglie, its centerpiece is a giant Christmas tree. As you stroll through the festively decorated and illuminated streets you'll notice the pleasing aromas of mulled wine, sweets, spice cakes, and biscuits—a truly magical atmosphere! This afternoon, an optional excursion into the Alsace wine region is available. This evening, enjoy an on-board woodcarving demonstration.

Day 4 Breisach

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Included today: Excursion to the Black Forest. Located at the foot of Kaiserstuhl Mountain on the French-German border, Breisach is the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest region, an area of unrivalled natural beauty with its forests of thick pine trees. The area got its name because the forests are so dense that local residents once described them as black. There’s no better setting for this time of year than when smoke curls from the chimneys of the traditional Black Forest houses with their long sloping roofs, connoting images of warm and festively decorated interiors. Surely, the most well-known products from this region are Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and cuckoo clocks. This afternoon there’s free time in Breisach to visit one more Christmas market—or you may join an optional excursion to Colmar in France’s Alsace region.

Day 5 Basel (Disembarkation)

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Disembark and transfer to the airport for your flight to the UK.

Questions? Our travel specialists can help with any queries, quotes or special requirements.  Request a callback or email us.

Notes

  • Christmas markets usually operate from late November until the third week in December, depending on location.
  • In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
  • Guided Tours, Optional Excursions, activities, sailing and docking schedules may be contingent on weather conditions or other issues outside of our control and could therefore be subject to change at any time.