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Rhine Highlights with Switzerland 2019
(National Geographic Cruise)

12 days with Scenic  Rating: Deluxe

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  • Fly for free in economy from select gateways or save $2,000 per couple on this sailing. Expires December 31. Click here for eligible departures.
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Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability is limited. Some discounts are not combinable.

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1
Arrive in Amsterdam, Netherlands and transfer to your Scenic Space Ship this afternoon. At this evening’s welcome reception, raise your glass to the journey ahead as we set sail on the Rhine. (Dinner)
 
Day 2 Amsterdam/Volendam/Edam
Known as the “Venice of the North,” Amsterdam is a vibrant city with an arts scene that has flourished since the Middle Ages.
 
Freechoice
Cruise through the city’s picturesque canals, which form a ring of waterways that has collectively been designated a World Heritage site. You may instead choose to go biking on the outskirts of the city, or take a guided visit to the renowned Rijksmuseum to examine masterpieces including Rembrandt’s Night Watch. National Geographic’s book The 10 Best of Everything ranks the Rijksmuseum among the top 10 museums in the world. Alternatively, discover the fishing village of Volendam, with its unusual raised homes and quaint wooden church. Then head to charming Edam and sample some of the round cheese for which the village famous. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 3 Cologne/Mettmann
The largest city on the Rhine, Cologne boasts an intriguing blend of ancient and modern architecture. Here, amid the cobblestoned streets of the Old Town, Roman ruins mix with Romanesque churches and contemporary museums.
 
Freechoice
Enjoy a scenic ride on Germany’s oldest cog railway and discover Schloss Drachenburg, or Dragon Castle, which overlooks the Rhine Valley. Or stroll through Cologne’s historic quarter and get up close to the filigreed twin towers of its Gothic cathedral—one of Germany’s most famous landmarks. Alternatively, visit the Neanderthal Museum in Mettmann, located in the valley where the bones of an Ice Age human—a Neanderthal—were recovered for the first time. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 4 Koblenz/Cochem
Freechoice: Spend the day exploring Koblenz, an ancient Roman city that straddles two of Europe’s most beautiful rivers—the Rhine and Moselle. Discover the highlights of the Old Town, including the 13th-century Liebfrauenkirche (Church of Our Lady) and the 18th-century Rathaus (town hall), which was formerly a Jesuit college. Or venture to Cochem, a medieval gem situated on the banks of the Moselle. Discover this fairy-tale city on a guided tour that includes a visit to the 1,000-year-old Reichsburg Castle, which presides over the valley from a hilltop perch. Alternatively, you may opt to visit a winery or go biking along the river.
 
Freechoice
Spend the day exploring Koblenz, an ancient Roman city that straddles two of Europe’s most beautiful rivers—the Rhine and Moselle. Discover the highlights of the Old Town, including the 13th-century Liebfrauenkirche (Church of Our Lady) and the 18th-century Rathaus (town hall), which was formerly a Jesuit college. Or venture to Cochem, a medieval gem situated on the banks of the Moselle. Discover this fairy-tale city on a guided tour that includes a visit to the 1,000-year-old Reichsburg Castle, which presides over the valley from a hilltop perch. Alternatively, you may opt to visit a winery or go biking along the river. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 5 Rüdesheim
Arrive in Rüdesheim and board the Winzerexpress mini-train.
 
This afternoon, our ship continues to the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, often called the Rhine Gorge. This 40-mile stretch of river flows past medieval towns, castles, and vineyards, and has been designated a World Heritage site for its historical importance and natural beauty.
 
Freechoice
At Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Cabinet, peruse a large collection of mechanical musical instruments, which includes a vast array of music boxes. Then ride a cable car high above the city to the Niederwald Monument, built between 1877 and 1883 to commemorate the unification of Germany.  Alternatively, go hiking through the vineyards of Rüdesheim, enjoying picturesque views. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 6 Heidelberg, Germany
Freechoice: Home to the oldest university in Germany, Heidelberg also boasts a rich literary history. Join a local guide on a tour of this delightful city, which inspired 19th-century German Romantics as well as Mark Twain, who recorded his observations of the city in A Tramp Abroad. Stroll through the Altstadt, or Old Town, and visit Heidelberg’s sandstone castle—a masterpiece of Renaissance architecture. Or take a funicular up the hill, enjoying spectacular views as you hike back down to town. Alternatively, embark on an excursion to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Grube Messel, a fossil site that was featured in a February 2000 National Geographic magazine story. “Ida,” the most perfectly preserved primate fossil in the world, was discovered here in 1983 and later analyzed by National Geographic Emerging Explorer Jorn Hurum and his team in 2009.
 
Enrich
This evening, enjoy a private concert at a baroque palace.
 
Freechoice
Home to the oldest university in Germany, Heidelberg also boasts a rich literary history. Join a local guide on a tour of this delightful city, which inspired 19th-century German Romantics as well as Mark Twain, who recorded his observations of the city in A Tramp Abroad. Stroll through the Altstadt, or Old Town, and visit Heidelberg’s sandstone castle—a masterpiece of Renaissance architecture. Or take a funicular up the hill, enjoying spectacular views as you hike back down to town. Alternatively, embark on an excursion to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Grube Messel, a fossil site that was featured in a February 2000 National Geographic magazine story. “Ida,” the most perfectly preserved primate fossil in the world, was discovered here in 1983 and later analyzed by National Geographic Emerging Explorer Jorn Hurum and his team in 2009.
 
Enrich
This evening, enjoy a private concert at a baroque palace. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 7 Strasbourg, France/Mittelbergheim/Black Forest, Germany
Freechoice: Venture ashore at Strasbourg, the capital of France’s wine-growing Alsace region. Our exploration begins with a tour of the canal-laced La Petite France district, where artisans lived and worked during the Middle Ages. Then stroll through the Old Town, designated a World Heritage site for its wealth of architectural gems, including half-timbered houses, Alsatian winstubs (taverns), and Strasbourg’s Gothic Cathédrale Notre-Dame. Alternatively, journey to the village of Mittelbergheim and sample some of the distinctive wines for which the Alsace region is known. Or opt to go hiking in the dense woodlands of Germany’s Black Forest region, which is believed to have inspired the Brothers Grimm when they were researching and writing their famous fairy tales.
 
Freechoice
Venture ashore at Strasbourg, the capital of France’s wine-growing Alsace region. Our exploration begins with a tour of the canal-laced La Petite France district, where artisans lived and worked during the Middle Ages. Then stroll through the Old Town, designated a World Heritage site for its wealth of architectural gems, including half-timbered houses, Alsatian winstubs (taverns), and Strasbourg’s Gothic Cathédrale Notre-Dame. Alternatively, journey to the village of Mittelbergheim and sample some of the distinctive wines for which the Alsace region is known. Or opt to go hiking in the dense woodlands of Germany’s Black Forest region, which is believed to have inspired the Brothers Grimm when they were researching and writing their famous fairy tales. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 8 Basel > Montreux
Disembark and transfer to Vevey, home to Charlie Chaplin once he’d fled the United States. Enter the world of Charlie Chaplin as you meet one of the 20th century’s most celebrated artists during a visit to the Chaplin’s World Museum. This afternoon you’ll get the chance to luxuriate at your hotel located on the shores of picturesque Lake Geneva, where you’ll be enjoying a two night stay. (Breakfast)
 
Day 9 Montreux
Enrich
Today board your carriage for a panoramic train journey to Château-d’Œx. Upon arrival you’ll view traditional cheese-making in rustic ambience at the Restaurant Le Chalet. The Restaurant Le Chalet makes its own cheese, “Le Chalet Bio”. The cheesemaker transforms milk into a hard cheese right in front of your eyes. At the end of the demonstration you’ll have an opportunity to taste the freshly made cheese.
 
Enrich
Today board your carriage for a panoramic train journey to Château-d’Œx. Upon arrival you’ll view traditional cheese-making in rustic ambience at the Restaurant Le Chalet. The Restaurant Le Chalet makes its own cheese, “Le Chalet Bio”. The cheesemaker transforms milk into a hard cheese right in front of your eyes. At the end of the demonstration you’ll have an opportunity to taste the freshly made cheese.
 
Day 10 Montreux > Bern
Ascend the Swiss Alps to the breathtaking village of Gstaad. Then continue to Bern for your overnight stay.
 
Day 11 Bern > Lucerne > Zurich
Journey to Lucerne and discover this charming town on an orientation tour with your tour director. Continue to Zurich for an overnight stay, repeatedly named the city with the world’s highest quality of life, Zurich is Switzerland’s largest city and home to a host of treasures.
 
Day 12 Zurich
After breakfast you’ll be transferred to Zurich Airport for your onward or homebound flight with memories of a truly unforgettable trip. (Breakfast)

All This Included
These departures will be accompanied by a National Geographic expert who will give talks throughout the week and join guests on off-ship excursions. Additionally, a National Geographic photographer will be on board to share techniques and help guests hone their photography skills. We've added extra choice excursions as well, from hikes and bike rides to in-depth learning experiences that focus on the natural world, culture, and history.
  • 5-star Scenic Space-Ships featuring Scenic Sun Lounges
  • 2 exclusive Enrich experiences
  • Your choice of 12 Freechoice activities
  • Exclusive Scenic Tailormade
  • 26 meals – 11 breakfasts, 7 lunches and 8 dinners
Accommodations on this Tour
Cruising: Cabin aboard the Scenic Opal
Montreux: To be determined
Bern: To be determined
Zurich: To be determined
Notes
  • Itineraries are subject to change.
  • Cabin upgrades are 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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