Christmastime in Alsace & Germany (Northbound) 2019

5 day River Cruise Basel to Wiesbaden

Cruise WFZ

From 

£1,432  pp

Cruise only

Departing 16 December 2019

From 

£1,840  pp

Cruise with flights & transfers

From London Heathrow

Showing 2019 information. Switch to 2020

Print

Overview

This Christmastime river cruise is a unique and unforgettable way to celebrate the season! Board your Avalon Suite Ship® in Mainz, Germany, then sail up the Rhine River to Basel, Switzerland, passing beautiful landscapes and quaint villages festively lit and decorated.

This one-of-a-kind Christmas river cruise through France and Germany takes you on an excursion to Heidelberg, Germany, to visit the fascinating ruins of Heidelberg Castle, towering magnificently over the city. At this time of year, an ice rink can be found at the foot of the castle and the Christmas market is spread over five town squares. Delight in the holiday cheer with Glühwein (hot mulled wine), bratwursts, and other regional delicacies. You’ll also find an array of crafts, Christmas decorations, and gifts.

Strasbourg, located on the border of France and Germany, perfectly blends the cultures of both countries. Strasbourg is home to one of the oldest and finest Christmas markets in Europe—dating back to the 16th century. Take in the aromas of mulled wine, spice cakes, and biscuits. Bask in the holiday atmosphere as you visit the Strasbourg Cathedral, a gothic masterpiece made of red sandstone, and containing ancient murals and fascinating astronomical clock.

Your Christmas river cruise along the Rhine River takes you to Breisach, considered the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest—an area of unrivaled natural beauty, best known for Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and the cuckoo clock. There is no better setting than this time of year when smoke curls from the chimneys of the traditional Black Forest houses. Your delightful holiday cruise ends in Basel, Switzerland. Don’t miss this experience to savour the holiday season in traditional and beautiful Christmas traditions of European winter markets and festivities!

This Christmastime river cruise is a unique and unforgettable way to celebrate the season! Board your Avalon Suite Ship® in Mainz, Germany, then sail up the Rhine River to Basel, Switzerland, passing beautiful landscapes and quaint villages festively lit and decorated.

This one-of-a-kind Christmas river cruise through France and Germany takes you on an excursion to Heidelberg, Germany, to visit the fascinating ruins of Heidelberg Castle, towering magnificently over the city. At this time of year, an ice rink can be found at the foot of the castle and the Christmas market is spread over five town squares. Delight in the holiday cheer with Glühwein (hot mulled wine), bratwursts, and other regional delicacies. You’ll also find an array of crafts, Christmas decorations, and gifts.

Strasbourg, located on the border of France and Germany, perfectly blends the cultures of both countries. Strasbourg is home to one of the oldest and finest Christmas markets in Europe—dating back to the 16th century. Take in the aromas of mulled wine, spice cakes, and biscuits. Bask in the holiday atmosphere as you visit the Strasbourg Cathedral, a gothic masterpiece made of red sandstone, and containing ancient murals and fascinating astronomical clock.

Your Christmas river cruise along the Rhine River takes you to Breisach, considered the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest—an area of unrivaled natural beauty, best known for Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and the cuckoo clock. There is no better setting than this time of year when smoke curls from the chimneys of the traditional Black Forest houses. Your delightful holiday cruise ends in Basel, Switzerland. Don’t miss this experience to savour the holiday season in traditional and beautiful Christmas traditions of European winter markets and festivities!

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
<p>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.</p>
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 Mainz, Germany (Embarkation)

  • Meals included:
  • Dinner

Welcome to Germany! Your Suite Ship is ready for boarding.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO SPEYER

Day 2 Speyer, Germany. Excursion to Heidelberg

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Winter Wonders and a Wine Barrel Fit for a King

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.

Take a guided tour that includes the magnificent Heidelberg Castle and the Great Vat—the world’s largest wine barrel.

After the tour, visit the local German Christmas Markets in Heidelberg, or Speyer. Explore at your own pace to soak up the sights and sounds, tantalizing treats, and seasonal handiwork of these sparkling winter wonderlands.

This evening, enjoy live entertainment on board.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT TO STRASBOURG

Day 3 Strasbourg, France

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

A Gothic Cathedral, Heaven’s Time, and Joyeux Noël

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.

Come along for city sightseeing, including the city’s gothic, stained-glass cathedral with its celebrated ancient murals and astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France District.

You may choose to join a guided optional excursion to beautiful Alsace, for an afternoon in a French wine-country village.

Savour the warmth and glow of Christmas tradition by spending your free time this afternoon wandering the French winter markets of Strasbourg. Take in the lights, music, and the pleasures of the season.

EVENING CRUISE TO BREISACH

Day 4 Breisach, Germany. Excursion to the Black Forest

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

History, Artistry, and the Beautiful Black Forest

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.

Join a guided tour to the magical Black Forest to experience local traditions and the vibrant Christmas mood.

You may choose to join a guided optional excursion to visit the charming village of Colmar, with its half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings, and enjoy the warmth and glow of the Christmas season.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BASEL

Day 5 Basel, Switzerland (Disembarkation)

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Your holiday ends with breakfast this morning.

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.

Ship details

Onboard every one of our Suite Ships you'll find the same exacting standards and attention to detail. They all feature our one-of-a-kind Panorama Suites, with the widest opening windows in river cruising, and beds facing the incredible views. This cruise operates on the following ships.

Avalon Visionary

The Avalon Visionary delivers an intimate setting for 128 passengers, with two full decks of suites featuring wall-to-wall panoramic windows that transform the living space into a unique open-air balcony. With 200 square feet, Panorama Suites are more than 30% larger than the industry standard, giving you the rare opportunity to wake each morning to the changing scenery. Onboard amenities include complimentary computer use in public areas and Wi-Fi access, a fitness centre, and a spacious Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs, shade system, whirlpool, and the delightful Sky Bistro.

Deluxe Stateroom (D,E)
172 sq.ft., Indigo Deck
Deluxe Stateroom - Indigo Deck Forward - floorplan
Picture of Deluxe Stateroom - Indigo Deck Forward (172sq ft)
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium mattress covers, Egyptian super-combed cotton linens and European-style duvets
  • Choice of soft or firm pillows
  • Extra blankets
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twin beds or one queen-size bed
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium L'Occitane bath amenities
  • Spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels
  • Alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
  • Continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies)
Panorama Suite (A,B,P)
200 sq.ft, Sapphire and Royal Decks
Panorama Suite - Sapphire Deck Aft - floorplan
Picture of Panorama Suite with floor-to-ceiling windows - Sapphire Deck Aft (200sq ft)
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window measuring 11ft — 50% wider than the industry standard
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window opens to transform the living space into a large Open-Air BalconySM
  • Open-Air BalconySM with spacious seating area
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium mattress covers, Egyptian super-combed cotton linens and European-style duvets
  • Choice of soft or firm pillows
  • Extra blankets
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twin beds or one queen-size bed
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium L'Occitane bath amenities
  • Spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels
  • Alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
  • Continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies)
Royal Suite (S)
300 sq.ft., Royal Deck
Royal Suite - Royal Deck - floorplan
Picture of Royal Suite with floor-to-ceiling windows - Royal Deck (300sq ft)
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window measuring 11ft — 50% wider than the industry standard
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window opens to transform the living space into a large Open-Air BalconySM
  • Open-Air BalconySM with spacious seating area
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium mattress covers, Egyptian super-combed cotton linens and European-style duvets
  • Choice of soft or firm pillows
  • Extra blankets
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twin beds, one queen-size bed or one king-size bed (Royal Suites only)
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium L'Occitane bath amenities
  • Spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels
  • Alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
  • Continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies)
Deck Plans
Avalon Visionary deck plan

Deck plan key

  • Sky Lounge
  • Navigation Bridge
  • Sky Bistro
  • Whirlpool
  • Premium lounge chairs and shade awnings
  • Deck Game area
  • Observation Lounge
  • Panorama Bistro
  • Panorama Lounge
  • Bar
  • Reception/Guest sevices
  • Lift
  • Atrium
  • Club Lounge
  • Kitchen
  • Dining room
  • Fitness centre

Stateroom categories

  • Category E
  • Deluxe stateroom - Indigo Deck Forward
  • Category D
  • Deluxe Stateroom - Indigo Deck Aft
  • Royal Suite
  • Royal Deck
  • Category P
  • Panorama Suite - Royal Deck
  • Category A
  • Panorama Suite - Sapphire Deck Forward
  • Category B
  • Panorama Suite - Sapphire Deck Aft

Avalon Imagery II

One of 2016's two new additions to the youngest fleet on Europe's waterways, the Imagery II accommodates 128 passengers and continues all of Avalon's excellent Suite Ship traditions. Choose from two full decks of Panorama Suites, featuring wall-to-wall panoramic windows that transform the living space into a unique open-air balcony. Wake each morning with a view of the splendid passing scenery. Onboard amenities include complimentary Wi-Fi access, an expanded fitness centre, hair salon, an elevator, alternative light dining options in the Panorama Bistro or al fresco grill lunch at the Sky Bistro, and an expansive Sky Deck with whirlpool, premium lounge chairs, a shade system and deck games.

Deluxe Stateroom (D,E)
172 sq.ft., Indigo Deck
Deluxe Stateroom - Indigo Deck Forward - floorplan
Picture of Deluxe Stateroom - Indigo Deck Forward (172sq ft)
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium memory foam mattress toppers with special construction for increased air flow and ventilation
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens, blankets & European-style duvets
  • Choice of soft or firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twins or one queen
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium bath products
  • Spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels & built in alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
  • Continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies)
Panorama Suite (A,B,P)
200 sq.ft, Sapphire and Royal Decks
Panorama Suite - Sapphire Deck Aft - floorplan
Picture of Panorama Suite with floor-to-ceiling windows - Sapphire Deck Aft (200sq ft)
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window measuring 11ft — 50% wider than the industry standard
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window opens to create a large Open-Air Balcony®
  • Open-Air Balcony with spacious seating area
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium memory foam mattress toppers with special construction for increased air flow and ventilation
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens, blankets & European-style duvets
  • Choice of soft or firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twins or one queen
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium bath products
  • Spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels & built in alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
  • Continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies)
Royal Suite (S)
300 sq.ft., Royal Deck
Royal Suite - Royal Deck - floorplan
Picture of Royal Suite with floor-to-ceiling windows - Royal Deck (300sq ft)
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window measuring 11ft — 50% wider than the industry standard
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window opens to create a large Open-Air Balcony®
  • Open-Air Balcony with spacious seating area
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM, featuring premium memory foam mattress toppers with special construction for increased air flow and ventilation
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens, blankets & European-style duvets
  • Choice of soft or firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration - two twins or one queen or one king
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Bathrobes and slippers
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer and premium bath products
  • Spacious 3-door wardrobes with shelves for ample storage
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels & built in alarm clock
  • Writing desk/vanity with mirror and comfortable chair
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • In-room safe
  • Individual climate control
  • Continental breakfast and beverage room service available (service charge applies)
Deck Plans
Avalon Imagery II deck plan

Deck plan key

  • Sky Lounge
  • Navigation Bridge
  • Sky Bistro
  • Whirlpool
  • Premium lounge chairs and shade awnings
  • Deck Game area
  • Observation Lounge
  • Panorama Bistro
  • Panorama Lounge
  • Bar
  • Reception/Guest sevices
  • Lift
  • Atrium
  • Club Lounge
  • Kitchen
  • Dining room
  • Fitness centre

Stateroom categories

  • Royal Suite
  • Royal Deck
  • Category P
  • Royal Deck
  • Category A
  • Sapphire Deck Forward
  • Category B
  • Sapphire Deck Aft
  • Category D
  • Indigo Deck Aft
  • Category E
  • Indigo Deck Forward