Sailing from Basel to Cologne, this cruise takes you through the most enchanting landscapes of the Rhine Valley, past vineyard-covered hills watched over by the romantic ruins of medieval castles, calling at picture-postcard towns along the way. Your holiday begins with a two-night hotel stay in Lucerne, the gateway to the Swiss Alps, and there will also be time to see the sights in Basel before our journey down river. Explore the lovely French city of Strasbourg, both on foot and on a cruise through its pretty canals, venture into the fabled Black Forest and sail past the legendary Lorelei Rock to Koblenz, with its grand fortress, before reaching your final, magnificent port of call, Cologne.
2 nights in hotel and 7 nights cruise on MS Serenade 1 (accommodation as specified or similar)
Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service collects you from your home, for your journey to London Heathrow Airport and a direct, scheduled British Airways flight to Basel. On arrival, transfer to Lucerne and your hotel for the next two nights, the Wilden Mann (4T).
Day 2 Lucerne
You are free to explore the charming lakeside city of Lucerne today. Take a walk around the well-preserved medieval Old Town and across the 14th century Chapel Bridge, the oldest covered wooden bridge in Europe. Lucerne is also a good base from which to explore the Swiss Alps.
Day 3 - Lucerne - Basel
We transfer to Basel this afternoon and board our ship, the MS Serenade 1 (4T). Light refreshments will be available on arrival, with the rest of the afternoon at leisure to settle in before a welcome cocktail and Captain’s gala dinner this evening.
Day 4 - Basel
There will be time to explore the sights of Basel at leisure today. Perhaps take a wander through the cobbled streets of the Old Town or explore the city’s museums and art galleries. Alternatively, you can join an optional city tour, to explore in more detail. We sail this evening.
Day 5 - Breisach - Strasbourg
We wake up in Germany this morning, where you’ll have time to explore the town of Breisach at leisure. Much of the town was destroyed by wartime bombing, but it has since been painstakingly restored. Perhaps visit the Gothic St Stephen’s Cathedral and the City History Museum, housed in a 17th century tower, with displays chronicling the town’s history from the Stone Age to the present day. Alternatively, you may choose to join our optional excursion to Lake Titisee in the Black Forest. We depart late this afternoon, sailing northwards to Strasbourg, where we dock for two nights.
Day 6 - Strasbourg
We have a full day to explore Strasbourg today, beginning with a guided tour of this enticing French city, home to the European Parliament, a magnificent Gothic cathedral and a UNESCO-listed Old Town, filled with pretty half-timbered houses. We will also enjoy a cruise along the city’s canals.
Day 7 - Strasbourg - Mannheim - Rüdesheim
Join our excursion into the Black Forest, where forest clad mountains, river valleys and multiple vineyards form one of Germany’s most beautiful regions. This vast area is considered home of the cuckoo clock and the Black Forest gateau, and has set the scene for many fairytales including Hansel and Gretel. This afternoon we continue to Mannheim, with its magnificent Baroque palace, before sailing on to Rüdesheim, where we dock overnight.
Day 8 - Rüdesheim - Lorelei Rock - Koblenz
Enjoy a leisurely cruise down the Rhine, passing the Lorelei Rock in the Rhine Gorge, where legend tells of a water nymph luring fishermen to their doom. After lunch we arrive in Koblenz, where we dock overnight. Koblenz stands at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle rivers and is dominated by the Ehrenbreitstein Fortress, completed in 1828, and we visit this on our included excursion, along with the historic city centre.
Day 9 - Koblenz - Cologne
We depart Koblenz this morning and enjoy a leisurely cruise towards Cologne, arriving this afternoon. One of Germany’s oldest cities, Cologne’s origins go back to the days of the Roman Empire and we take in the sights on a walking tour of the historic city centre, including the magnificent Gothic cathedral, one of the largest in Europe. The rest of the day is at leisure. Tonight, enjoy the Captain’s farewell gala dinner on board.
Day 10 Cologne - Dusseldorf - London
Disembark in Cologne and transfer to Dusseldorf Airport for a direct, scheduled British Airways flight to London Heathrow. On arrival you will be met and guided to your Titan vehicle, for the journey home.