Day 1 Zurich – Basel
Welcome to Switzerland. You will be met at the airport by an Emerald Waterways representative and transferred to your luxurious Star-Ship in Basel, where your friendly captain and crew will be waiting to greet you. This evening, join your fellow guests for dinner on board. (Dinner)
Day 2 Breisach
The Black Forest is a fairytale-like region full of charming cuckoo clocks and live oompah bands. Today, enjoy an immersive learning experience as you visit a Black Forest village, complemented by a series of wooden outbuildings and demonstrations of traditional handicrafts, each offering a glimpse into rural life among the surrounding forests and mountain ranges. Alternatively, explore your surroundings during a hike through the Black Forest, traversing well-trodden trails underneath a lush canopy.
Later enjoy a Black Forest demonstration and tasting.
EmeraldPLUS: A Black Forest gateau demonstration and tasting
EmeraldACTIVE: A hike through the Black Forest
EmeraldEXCURSION: A visit to a Black Forest village (extra expense) (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 3 Kehl - Strasbourg
Today, you will dock in Kehl, where you will be transferred by coach to medieval Strasbourg. Your local guide will be available to teach you about the history of the city during an insightful guided tour.
Pass through cobbled squares that are adorned with quaint boutiques and charming cafés as you explore the UNESCO World Heritage-listed old town, including Petite France, an area of unmatched beauty with a picturesque canal system that cascades past half-timbered houses that were home to fishermen, tanners and millers during the Middle Ages. The narrow lanes and footbridges that pepper the area all add to its undeniable charm. This afternoon, Strasbourg is yours to explore at leisure.
EmeraldPLUS: A guided tour of Strasbourg (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 4 Mannheim – Heidelberg – Rüdesheim
This morning, relax on board as we cruise along the Rhine River, passing Mannheim on our way to Heidelberg. The streets of Mannheim are laid out in a traditional grid system, which is why it is also known as the “City of Squares”.
When you arrive in Heidelberg, the UNESCO City of Literature will be yours to explore, with publishing houses and libraries on every corner, and a vibrant artistic culture resonating through the streets.
Your guided tour of Heidelberg’s rich history includes a wine tasting, and a visit to the ruins of Heidelberg Castle, overlooking the Rhine River and a red-roofed skyline. Some of the most successful painters of the Romantic era drew inspiration from Heidelberg Castle, including British artist William Turner, who depicted images of the ruins in several of his paintings. Afterwards, stroll down the cobbled streets of the old town, touching on the Church of the Holy Spirit and the oldest university in Germany.
EmeraldACTIVE: An active hike from Mount Königstuhl to Heidelberg
EmeraldEXCURSION: A guided tour of Heidelberg with wine tasting (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 5 Koblenz
Today, we will take you into the heart of Koblenz, an ancient city that looks as though it has been pulled from the pages of a German fairytale. Enjoy a picturesque backdrop of vineyards and snow-topped mountain ranges as your local guide takes you through open cobbled squares and down narrow streets, passing façades adorned with boxes of spring-blooming flowers. Your tour will include the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle at the German Corner and idyllic panoramic views of the Rhine from Ehrenbreitstein Fortress.
EmeraldEXCURSION: A guided walking tour of Koblenz and a visit to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress
DiscoverMORE: A Moselle & Cochem Castle visit (extra expense) (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 6 Cologne
The largest city on the Rhine awaits your arrival today. Once a major trade route linking both sides of Europe, this city now offers the perfect platform from which to explore Roman history, including sights of ornate Roman mosaics that have stood the test of time.
Your insightful guided tour of Cologne will detail how the air raids of WWII turned its streets into a blank canvas, resulting in the loss of many of its ancient monuments and cultural treasures. As many historic buildings as possible were restored following the war years, but they now sit aside modern architecture. Your tour will conclude at the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Cologne Cathedral, a religious building that was constructed over six centuries, with builders choosing to stick to original plans and medieval techniques so that it retained its authenticity.
EmeraldEXCURSION: A guided tour of Cologne (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 7 Amsterdam
A visit to the iconic Keukenhof Gardens is certain to be a memorable experience today, as you stroll down serene paths that showcase spring in a quintessentially Dutch manner, with more than 800 varieties of spring-flowering tulips and regular flower shows. Each year, an annual theme spreads across the gardens, and you will have every opportunity to learn about different planting techniques and the work completed behind the scenes by landscape architects during your time here.
Soak in sights of tulips, hyacinths and orchids of every colour, creating a swathe of natural beauty as they have been expertly arranged. You will also have the opportunity to see statues that have been commissioned by artists from around the world, each honing in on the annual theme.
EmeraldPLUS: A visit to Keukenhof Gardens
DiscoverMORE: Haarlem Tour (extra expense) (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 8 Depart Amsterdam
After breakfast, it’s time to say farewell to your fellow guests as you disembark the ship and transfer to the airport for your onward or homebound flight, taking memories of spring-blooming flowers and delightful cobblestone squares with you. (Breakfast)
Cruising: Cabin onboard Emerald Dawn, Emerald Sky or Emerald Sun
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.