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Romantic Rhine Author Cruise with Diana Gabaldon 2021

8 days with Avalon Waterways  Rating: Deluxe

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 BASEL, SWITZERLAND (EMBARKATION)
Welcome to Switzerland. Your Suite Ship® is Ready for Boarding.

Flights into Zürich or Basel must arrive by 3 pm.

Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.

Enjoy dinner and explore the ship on your first night on board.

EVENING CRUISE TO BREISACH 

(D)

Day 2 BREISACH, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO BLACK FOREST
German Winemakingand the Beautiful Black Forest

Visit the Adventure Center for today’s activities with your Adventure Host.

DISCOVERY Join a full-day Guided Tour to the magical Black Forest to experience the Vogtsbauernohf open-air-museum, visit an authentic water mill, and see a traditional butter-making demonstration, OR:

DISCOVERY Visit to Badischer Winzerkeller, the largest German wine producer in Europe. Learn about German winemaking in the vineyards of Baden, and enjoy a wine tasting. 

You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to visit the charming village of Colmar in the morning, with its half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings.

EVENING CRUISE TO STRASBOURG

(B,L,D)

Day 3 STRASBOURG, FRANCE
A Grand Cathedral and La Petite France

CLASSIC Join a City Sightseeing Tour, including Strasbourg’s Gothic, stained-glass cathedral with its celebrated ancient murals and astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France District.

You may also choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to the historic Maginot Line—the pre-WWII fortifications designed to protect the eastern border of France, or visit Alsace’s wine country today.

Alternatively, take some free time in Strasbourg to visit a museum, or stroll across the city center.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO LUDWIGSHAFEN

(B,L,D)

Day 4 MAINZ, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO HEIDELBERG
Castle Walls, and the World’s Biggest Wine Barrel

CLASSIC Enjoy a Guided Tour to Heidelberg Castle to see the ruins of the magnificent renaissance treasure towering above the city, and its famed Great Vat, the “World’s Largest Wine Barrel,” OR:

ACTIVE Join your Avalon Adventure Host for a Hike up Philosophers’ Way for an inspiring view of the city below, OR:

CLASSIC Enjoy a Guided City Walk in Mainz, including a visit to the Gutenberg Museum to see the captivating history of printing.

Enjoy live entertainment on board your ship this evening.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN MAINZ

(B,L,D)

Day 5 RÜDESHEIM–RHINE GORGE
Eat, Drink, and Be Merry in Wine Country

DISCOVERY Take a Guided Tour of the incredible Mechanical Music Museum for a one-of-a-kind instrumental experience; based on your departure enjoy a local special treat, OR: 

ACTIVE Enjoy a hike with your Avalon Adventure Host through the picturesque vineyards of Rüdesheim.

Relax on the Sky Deck for an afternoon cruise through the spectacular Rhine Gorge to Koblenz. Sail past the legendary rock of The Lorelei—where the siren of mythology sang songs to lure ill-fated sailors.

KOBLENZ

Travel Through 2000 Years Of Monumental History

Enjoy free time in Koblenz before a relaxing evening on board with dinner and live entertainment.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN KOBLENZ

(B,L,D)

Day 6 COLOGNE
Prost! Celebrate in the Rhineland

Join your Adventure Host for today’s special activities.

CLASSIC Take a Guided City Walk of Cologne—with its soaring twin-steepled gothic cathedral, OR: 

DISCOVERY Choose a Guided Walking Tour of Cologne’s important Jewish heritage sites.

Spend free time over a glass of Kölsch pale lager—locally brewed for over 100 years!

AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO AMSTERDAM

(B,L,D)

Day 7 AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND
Canals of Colorful Amsterdam

CLASSIC Explore the iconic waterways of Amsterdam on a Guided Canal Cruise past stately homes of Amsterdam’s “Golden Age.”

During tulip season, you may take a Guided Optional Excursion to Keukenhof gardens—with more than seven million tulips, daffodils and hyacinths, as well as other bulbs, planted each year. Outside of tulip season, join a Guided Optional Excursion to Zaanse Schans to see historic windmills and charming Dutch houses. You may also choose an Optional Biking Tour to discover the countryside.

Take some free time to explore Amsterdam’s colorful streets and canal houses, galleries, and shops.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AMSTERDAM

(B,L,D)

Day 8 AMSTERDAM (DISEMBARKATION)
Your cruise ends with breakfast this morning.

(B)
Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • Day 1 Basel (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception
  • Day 2 Breisach: choice of excursion to Black Forest or visit to Badischer Winzerkeller
  • Day 3 Strasbourg: guided sightseeing, visit La Petite France district and the Gothic cathedral
  • Day 4 Mainz: choice of guided tour of Heidelberg Castle, see the Great Vat, or hike up Philosophers’ Way, or visit the Gutenberg Museum in Mainz
  • Day 5 Rüdesheim–Rhine Gorge–Koblenz: visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum in Rüdesheim; scenic cruise through the Rhine Gorge; free time in Koblenz
  • Day 6 Cologne: choice of “Cologne Highlights” walking tour or Jewish Heritage walking tour
  • Day 7 Amsterdam: canal cruise
  • Day 8 Amsterdam (Disembarkation): your cruise ends this morning
All This Included
HOOKED ON OUTLANDER? BOOK A CRUISE WITH ITS AUTHOR! A NOVEL VACATION…

Bound to be the most memorable trip of 2021 (or a lifetime), author of the No. 1 New York Times-bestselling OUTLANDER series Diana Gabaldon is exclusively hosting an AUTHOR CRUISE with Avalon Waterways on the Rhine River in 2021. It’s your chance to get insider OUTLANDER insight, with your favorite author… FOR A WEEK! Diana Gabaldon has added to the storytelling tapestry of our lives while also inspiring travel with her literature. In her OUTLANDER series of novels and novellas – now an award-winning series on STARZ – she has brought to life the backdrops of Scotland, North America, France, Germany as well as dozens of destinations across the globe. With 35 million copies of her books in print worldwide, OUTLANDER can be found in 43 countries and 39 languages. On the April 24, 2021 departure of the Romantic Rhine cruise from Basel to Amsterdam, this inspiring storyteller will share an inspired cruise – and daily excursions – with an intimate group of her fans.

A MAGICAL ITINERARY…

From the German Black Forest of fairytales to the historic canals of Amsterdam, disappear in the magic of this Rhine River cruise with Author Diana Gabaldon. This week-long vacation – set onboard the Avalon Vista – delivers you to the heart of Europe to explore all the towns and cities along the Rhine River while enjoying panoramic views and spectacular, castle-lined backdrops days and night. Your 8-day Romantic Rhine river cruise begins in Switzerland where you will board your Suite Ship and home-away-from-home for the week before heading to the foot of Kaiserstuhl Mountain (on the French-German border) to find your gateway to Germany’s Black Forest. From there, set sail for Strasbourg, France with its ancient murals and astronomical clock, not to mention quaint shops, delightful bistros and waterfront promenade. The journey continues through Germany with a visit to the ruins of Heidelberg’s castle, the charming wine town of Rüdesheim and, of course, an awe-inspiring pass through the dramatic Rhine Gorge – the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine where dozens of ancient castles tower over the river from cliffs that seem to touch the sky. The last stop in Germany is in the gothic city of Cologne. End this cruise with an exclamation point in the picturesque, canal city of Amsterdam with its world-famous museums and tilting, gabled homes that date back to the “Golden Age.” 

Ship Amenities:
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows
  • Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs, whirlpool, shade awnings, & outdoor deck game area
  • State-of-the-art fitness center
  • Non-smoking staterooms & ship interior
  • Convenient Elevator Service
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Outside viewing deck
  • Headsets for guided shore excursions
  • English-speaking friendly crew, staff & professional Cruise Director
  • Sightseeing with Expert Local Guides
  • Onboard lectures, activities & entertainment
  • Complimentary room service for Continental breakfast
  • Sky Deck whirlpool
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Additional biking excursions available in Amsterdam, Breisach and Bernkastel
  • Onboard Adventure Center with active gear, bikes, Nordic walking sticks, watercraft & maps
  • Casual dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Avalon Choice® cruising experience
  • Behind-the-scenes galley tour
  • Choice of Classic, Active or Discovery excursions so that you can experience your cruise your way
  • Nordic walking sticks available onboard for complimentary check-out
  • Onshore & Onboard experiences with regional customs, cultures & tastings with local artisans, experts & entertainers
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Onboard assistance is available to recommend, reserve and further personalize your cruise
  • Linger over several selections from the Panorama Bistro's tasting menu for a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, including decaf options
  • Well-stocked library with books, cards, and board games
  • Complimentary bottled water, fresh fruit, and cookies available throughout the day
  • Full-size closet mirror
Ship Dining:
  • Avalon FreshSM healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, including decaf options
  • Welcome & farewell cocktails with sparkling wine & canapés
  • Spacious, open-seating Panorama Dining Room
  • Daily early-riser breakfast
  • Daily late-riser breakfast
  • Full buffet breakfast with sparkling wine and made-to-order egg station
  • Lunch buffet with carving and pasta stations
  • Al fresco lunch in the Sky Grill
  • Cocktails with a view on the Sky Deck
  • Healthy Corner options including low calorie, low fat, high fiber, low cholesterol, and high energy choices
  • Vegetarian options at every meal, as well as vegan and allergy-free selections
  • Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, and sweet treats
  • Happy Hour every evening including featured drink specials
  • Seasonal cuisine featuring the freshest local ingredients
  • Chef-prepared onboard meals with regional cuisine and familiar favorites
  • Four-course dinners with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrées and desserts or cheese
  • Complimentary wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Complimentary room service for Continental breakfast
  • Panorama Lounge & Bar with premium spirits, cozy seating, panoramic windows & dance floor
  • Healthy meal options
  • Casual dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Linger over several selections from the Panorama Bistro's tasting menu for a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere
  • Tastings - sample the destination's famous delicacies
  • Coffee or tea after dinner
  • Light lunch in the Panorama Lounge
  • FlexDining flexible dining times with menu & venue options
Accommodations on this Tour
Cruising: Cabin onboard Avalon Vista
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades available. 
  • In the event of technical or water level issues, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or alter the program, including hotel overnight when necessary.
  • 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.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • Gateway city for arrivals is Zürich.
    Port charges:  $196
    Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included on Avalon portion only.
    Avalon offers the opportunity for solo travelers to sail with no single supplement (subject to availability).
    Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.
    Additional accommodations before or after your tour may be available.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.



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