DAY 1: Basel (Embark)
Arrive at EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg and be transferred to the ship.
DAY 2: Basel
There’s much more to Switzerland than chocolate, cuckoo clocks and snow-capped mountain peaks (although we’re big fans of all these things). The cosmopolitan city of Basel is also a hotspot for contemporary art, was once the epicenter of the Zionist movement and has a historic and elegant charm that make it a delight to explore.You’ll have a choice of adventures today in Basel, a refined and cosmopolitan Swiss city synonymous with art and culture. Our “Do as the Locals Do” walking tour is a delightful way to experience Basel’s medieval town center. Alternatively, take a guided “Let's Go” bike ride along the Wiese River, making a stop at the renowned Fondation Beyeler Museum. The museum’s ingenious architecture is reason enough for a visit; inside, the art collection is equally awe-inspiring, ranging from Monet to Warhol. A third option is our Jewish Heritage tour of Basel, a city considered the cradle of modern Zionism.
Choice of Exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” Basel walking tour or Exclusive guided “Let's Go” bicycle ride with Fondation Beyeler Museum visit or Jewish Heritage, Basel’s Zionist legacy
DAY 3: Strasbourg
Strasbourg is invariably described as quaint, a rather overused word that in this case is perfectly apropos. Whether you see it by bicycle, on foot with an insightful local expert or opt to delve into the town’s Jewish past, Strasbourg’s cobbled lanes, half-timbered homes, giant stork nests and impossible-to-resist pastry shops will win your heart.Postcard-perfect Strasbourg is the very definition of picturesque, with its magnificent Gothic cathedral, cobblestone lanes and half-timbered homes adorned with flower-filled window boxes. After docking in town, you’ll have a chance to discover Strasbourg’s many charms with a choice of excursions: A guided “Do as the Locals Do” walking tour of the Petit France district, stopping to try traditional Alsatian treats along the way; a “Go Active” bike tour that covers a bit more ground, including the European district; or an in-depth look at the city’s rich Jewish history, which dates back an astonishing 2,000 years. After lunch onboard, spend the afternoon at your leisure, perhaps shopping for handcrafted souvenirs bearing images of white storks—a beloved symbol of the city.
Choice of Exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” Strasbourg walking tour or Guided “Let's Go” Strasbourg by bicycle or Jewish Heritage, Alsace’s Jewish past
DAY 4: Speyer
Expect the unexpected in Speyer, where ancient treasures harmoniously co-exist with modern day innovation. Take it all in during a walk with a local expert, or—for something really unexpected—venture into a spooky, candlelit tasting room to sample flavorful elixirs made from wine vinegars. Utterly unique and (surprisingly) delicious! A third option is our Jewish Heritage excursion to an ancient center of learning and religion.Join a local expert for a guided stroll through the historic small town of Speyer, famous for its vast Romanesque cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You’ll also have some free time to wander on your own, perhaps to have a coffee at a sidewalk café on the town’s bustling central plaza. If you prefer, head to the nearby Doktorenhof vinegar estate for a truly immersive and memorable cultural experience. Discover how the grapes cultivated on this family-run estate are transformed into unique wine vinegar aperitifs, then don a monk’s cloak and sample these rare (and surprisingly delicious) elixirs by candlelight in an atmospheric tasting room. Guests who prefer to take an intimate look at local Jewish history can choose an excursion to Worms, an ancient Jewish center of learning and religion.
Choice of Speyer walking discovery tour or Exclusive Doktorenhof vinegar estate visit and tasting or Jewish Heritage excursion to Worms
DAY 5: Frankfurt
Frankfurt is known as the “Mainhattan” of Europe, a financial powerhouse with soaring skyscrapers as well as traditional Old Town architecture. Experience the city with your choice of adventures today—visit Germany’s oldest museum, take a guided “Go Active” bike ride or learn about the Rothschild family’s rags-to-riches saga.Today we briefly leave the Rhine and cruise the Main to the dynamic metropolis of Frankfurt, the epicenter of German finance and international business. Step ashore and walk a short distance to the Old Town for our “Do as the Locals Do” walking tour. This part of the city has charming old homes, stately churches and a lively covered market where you can sample all sorts of local delicacies. Later, you can visit Germany’s oldest museum, the Städel, with 700 years of European art housed under a single roof. If you prefer, opt for a guided “Go Active” bike ride that takes you through the Old Town, along the Main River promenade and down the city’s world-famous “Museum Mile”—which boasts no fewer than 13 acclaimed institutions. For something completely different, you can spend your time in Frankfurt delving into the city’s fascinating Jewish legacy.
Choice of Exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” Frankfurt walking tour with Städel Museum or Exclusive guided “Let's Go” Frankfurt by bicycle or Jewish Heritage, Frankfurt Jewish Museum and the legacy of the Rothschilds
DAY 6: Oberwesel (Bacharach)
Bacharach is an ancient village that appears straight out of the pages of a storybook. Enjoy a guided stroll through town and taste some locally grown Rieslings, a specialty of the region. Alternatively, join a “Go Active” hike that will take you past the old town walls and up to a fortified 12th-century castle.
Choice of Bacharach village stroll with Riesling tasting or Exclusive guided “Let's Go” hike to Castle Stahleck
DAY 7: Cologne
You simply cannot visit Cologne without paying homage to its most notorious site, the Gothic masterpiece that serves as the city’s cathedral. A local expert will show you favorite haunts around the Old Town and share some of the cathedral’s most intriguing and Magi-cal secrets with you. Afterwards, you have a choice of three enticing excursions highlighting beer, contemporary art or Jewish history.Our first stop today is Cologne’s massive cathedral, a UNESCO-designated Gothic masterpiece with a shrine to the Three Magi that has drawn religious pilgrims for centuries. From there, beer aficionados can visit an Old Town pub for a taste of Kölsch, a brew made only in Cologne. Art lovers can see Europe’s most significant collection of contemporary art at Museum Ludwig. And guests interested in the city’s Jewish past are welcome to explore the centuries-old mikveh and other notable sites in Cologne’s Jewish quarter, once home to Europe’s first Jewish settlement north of the Alps. No matter which excursion you choose, you’ll also have ample free time to explore the city on your own.
Choice of Cologne walking discovery tour with Cologne Cathedral or Kölsch beer tasting or Museum Ludwig or Jewish Heritage, Cologne’s Jewish Quarter
A special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.
DAY 8: Arnhem
Arnhem, once almost completely destroyed by WWII, has blossomed into a burgeoning Dutch city, with several wonderful museums, charming shop-lined streets and historically significant landmarks. Get a glimpse into Arnhem’s WWII-era past at the Airborne Museum. It’s dedicated to the Battle of Arnhem, where Allied Airborne Forces (paratroopers) attempted to secure bridges in the surrounding areas to prevent further invasion. Learn the history of the infamous battle from enemy, ally and civilian perspective and explore an extensive collection of equipment and weaponry. Opt for more active exploration on the Arnhem Airborne Cycle route. Bike past major battle landmarks such as John Frost Bridge, Doorwerth Castle and the Airborne Cemetery as you travel along the river banks.
Arnhem Airborne Museum WWII
Choice of Arnhem Airborne Cycle Route
DAY 9: Rotterdam
You’ll spend your day exploring Rotterdam’s historic splendor, vibrant culture, varied architectural landscape and maritime heritage. Embark on a stroll around the port city’s most enticing spots, like Market Hall. The impressive residential and office building is adorned with a futuristic, all-glass façade, doubling as an art installation of sorts. While you’re in the heart of the city, you’ll stop along the way to sample mouthwatering Dutch pastries. Venture to the nearby village of Kinderjik and marvel at a group of 19 towering windmills. The World Heritage Site holds the largest concentration of old windmills in The Netherlands and its entire vicinity is a protected village view. Rotterdam is the “Gateway to Europe” and you’ll want to discover why. Upon your arrival in Arnhem that evening, choose to explore the Genealogy Museum of Jewish People.
Dutch Culinary Stroll of Rotterdam’s SuperDutch, supersized Market Hall
Choice of Kinderdijk – 19 windmills to harness the elements or Jewish Genealogy Museum visit
DAY 10: Amsterdam, Zaandam
Enjoy the luxury of a full day in the “Venice of the North,” starting with a private “Morning with the Masters” tour of the Amsterdam Hermitage. Afterwards, visit significant Jewish Heritage sites or explore the city on foot or by bike. At your private “Morning with the Masters” tour of the Amsterdam Hermitage, you’ll have the museum’s extraordinary collection of Dutch Masters all to yourself, as an art historian shows you Portrait Gallery highlights. Afterwards, choose from a trio of enticing excursions: Admire the city’s narrow, gabled homes lining the canals on a “Do as the Locals Do” walking tour; explore the hip and trendy Jordaan district on two wheels, the quintessential way to experience this bike-obsessed city; or opt for our Jewish Heritage tour, with stops at the Portuguese Synagogue and Jewish Museum.
Exclusive “Morning with the Masters” at the Hermitage Museum
“Do as the Locals Do” Amsterdam walking explorer
Choice of Jewish Heritage visit to Portuguese Synagogue and Jewish Museum or “Let’s Go” Discover Amsterdam – the lively Jordaan district by bike or Discover Dutch crafts, windmills and museums at Zaanse Schans
DAY 11: Amsterdam (Disembark)
Disembark the ship and be transferred to Amsterdam airport for your flight home.
Explore Europe’s rich history and Jewish heritage on an incredible discovery of The Netherlands, Germany, France and Switzerland. Dive deep into the region’s culture, natural wonders, traditions and historical significance in a one-of-a-kind experience along the Rhine. Delve into the region’s world-renowned museums in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Cologne, Basel and Arnhem. Along the way, indulge in Central Europe’s delicious cuisine—Dutch cheese and fries, Alsatian choux-croute, Swiss-style sausages, Kölsch beer, unique wine vinegar aperitifs and Germany’s famous white wines.
Oh, and did we mention the scenery? Standing on the top deck of your ship, watching the ever-changing landscape turn increasingly dramatic, you’ll understand why people have been raving about the Rhine River Valley for centuries - and there’s definitely no cause to stop.
All meals onboard, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients
Captain’s Welcome and Farewell Receptions
Welcome and Farewell Dinners
Unlimited beverages onboard, including fine wine, beer, spirits, soft drinks, specialty coffee and tea, and mineral water
7 days of excursions, including “Choice Is Yours” options, all fully hosted by English-speaking local experts
Guided "Jewish Heritage", “Let's Go,” “Do as the Locals Do,” “Village Day” and “Gentle Walking” programs
State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio-headset system on all excursions
Use of bicycles and Nordic walking stick
8-night cruise in a riverview stateroom on the elegant River Empress
Lavishly appointed riverview staterooms and suites have handcrafted Savoir® of England beds, high-thread count 100% Egyptian cotton sheets and European duvets, and a menu of pillow options
Free Internet and Wi-Fi access
4 countries: France, Germany, The Netherlands, Switzerland
4 UNESCO World Heritage sites
Services of an experienced Uniworld Cruise Manager
All transfers on arrival and departure days
All gratuities, both onboard and onshore
Captivating onboard local entertainment