Castles, Canals & a Swiss Alps Escape

from 

NZ$21,654

per person
 
Duration: 24 Nights
Destination: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Region: Europe
Deal Code: PANUKAR

 

 

Description

Pages from fairytales come to life as you find inspiration along the fabled, castle-laden Rhine and its breathtaking tributary, the Moselle, with fascinating scenery of Europe’s steepest vineyards lining its shores. Encounter some of the prettiest towns of the Alsace - Strasbourg and Riquewihr - that blend their German and French heritage into one enchanting masterpiece. Cochem and Bernkastel, towns that grew up below a castle, give you a sense of what it was like to live during the Middle Ages. Visit Trier, once known as the second Rome as no other city in Germany has so many monuments from Roman times; and Koblenz, where history meets at two rivers. Bygone grandeur of a different kind can be found at Mannheim’s glorious Baroque Palace. Colorful canals and glistening lakes, hilltop towns and majestic alps, mighty fortresses and storied castles, and hearty beer and delicate wines can all be experienced on this fairytale journey through time.


Swiss chocolate or cheese? Train hopping through vineyards or thoughtful reflections at a thermal spa? Wine a little or a lot?! The sky’s the limit in Switzerland! Mountains of possibilities await you thanks to complimentary YourChoice Excursions on this 8-day holiday from Zurich to Lugano. A Swiss adventure that is so cool, it “Bernes!”


Your Fly, Cruise & Tour Package Includes:

  • $3000 flight credit per person
  • 1 night 4-star accommodation in Amsterdam with breakfast
  • 11 night Rhine & Moselle Fairytales cruise onboard AmaPrima, Amsterdam to Basel
  • Includes all onboard dining, unlimited drinks with meals, immersive tours, wifi access plus more
  • 3 nights 4-star accommodation in Basel with breakfast
  • 2 nights 4-star accommodation in Zurich with breakfast
  • 7 night Switzerland & Lake Como guided tour with Globus, Zurich to Lugano
  • Includes superior accommodation, 9 meals, must-see sights, porterage, tips plus more
  • Select private transfers

Pricing is per person twin share and based on travel 26 August - 19 September 2025

Solo traveller pricing available. Please speak to one of our travel consultants for more details


Cruise Itinerary:

DAY 1 Amsterdam          

EMBARKATION

Board the ship for your Rhine & Moselle Fairytales cruise. (D)

DAY 2 Amsterdam          

There are 165 canals in Amsterdam, and you’ll get to enjoy some of them on your canal cruise. Later in the day, set sail out of Amsterdam. (B,L,D)

DAY 3 Cologne 

Enjoy cruising to Cologne, then join a guided tour through the enchanting Old Town, where you will see sites such as the Cologne Rathaus, Germany’s oldest town hall; the Fishmarkt, which dates back to the 12th century and the Great St. Martin Church. End your city tour with a visit to a local tavern to taste its famous Kölsch beer. As an alternative, examine the historic architectural styles on display throughout the Cologne Cathedral during a guided tour. This 13th-century Gothic marvel and UNESCO World Heritage Site was the tallest building in the world at the time of its completion, and the church withstood 14 hits from aerial bombs during World War II. Active guests will want to join a guided bike ride along the Rhine and through the historic Stadtgarten. (B,L,D)

DAY 4 Lahnstein              

Visit Lahneck Castle, a 13th-century medieval fortress in the riverside town of Lahnstein. There are a treasure trove of legends surrounding this castle, some including the twelve Knights Templar. Hear these stories and more on a guided tour through this historic castle. Alternatively, head to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress to take the aerial cable car over the Rhine to Koblenz, which boasts a rich history spanning more than 2,000 years. For those seeking a more active adventure, explore the area on the “Two Rivers Bike Tour,” which takes you along both the Rhine and Moselle rivers; or go on a hike around Lahnstein to Burg Lahneck Castle. (B,L,D)

DAY 5 Moselle Valley     

Spend the morning taking in the beauty of the Moselle on this scenic stretch of the river before reaching Cochem with its half-timbered houses and Reichsburg Castle. Join a guided tour through the castle and then walk through its Old Town. For those wishing to have a more active exploration of the area, you can go on a guided hike to the castle or a bike tour through Cochem. (B,L,D)

DAY 6 Moselle Valley     

Set sail for Trier, Germany’s oldest city, where you can discover on a city tour why it has been called the “Rome of the North” as it has impressive Roman relics and nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Alternatively, go in search of the secrets of the Porta Nigra Gate on a tour that takes you back to a time when Rome ruled the world from the Emperor’s seat in Trier. You also have the choice of a bike tour through the historic city center and along the Moselle River; or hike high above Trier to Petrisberg. (B,L,D)

DAY 7 Bernkastel            

Enjoy a scenic cruise to Bernkastel that will enchant you. Walk through its colorful Old Town center and past many medieval and Renaissance buildings on a guided tour that also includes a winery visit and tasting. Cycling enthusiasts can choose to join a bike tour and hikers can opt to trek up to the ruins of Landshut Castle, which dates all the way back to the 9th century. (B,L,D)

DAY 8 Rhine Gorge         

Cruise through the captivating UNESCO-designated Rhine Gorge, the most stunningly beautiful stretch of the river, before reaching Rüdesheim. Drink up the stunning views by soaring high above the vineyards with a gondola ride to the Niederwalddenkmal Statue, and afterwards, be treated to a wine tasting. For a more active adventure, hike through the town’s beautiful vineyards or join a guided bike tour through the Rheingau wine region. Later in the day, let Siegfried’s Mechanical Instrument Cabinet charm you or taste one of the town’s special delights, Rüdesheimer coffee, ceremoniously made with brandy, coffee and whipped cream. (B,L,D)

DAY 9 Ludwigshafen      

You have a choice of several excursions, depending on your interest. Visit Heidelberg, a perfectly preserved medieval city nestled in the Neckar River Valley along Germany’s Castle Road. Alternatively, relive a bygone era on an excursion to the glorious Schwetzingen Baroque Palace. Tour this splendid palace furnished with over 800 exhibits. You can also hike the historic Philosopher’s Path along the Neckar River or bike to the charming town of Ladenburg and glide past its half-timbered architecture. (B,L,D)

DAY 10 Strasbourg          

Strasbourg, the capital city of Alsace, offers flavors of both France and Germany because of its borderline location. Enjoy a panoramic tour past the stunning Parc de l’Orangerie, the European Parliament and the Place de la République before walking through its iconic “La Petite France” district, which appears to have been lifted straight from the pages of a fairytale. Wander through these charming streets and past the Cathédrale de Nôtre Dame with its famous astronomical clock. Alternatively, the active adventurer can take a guided bike ride through the city and Parc de l’Orangerie. (B,L,D)

DAY 11 Breisach               

Breisach is your gateway to several different excursions, depending on your interests. Step back in time with a visit to the enchanting Alsatian town of Riquewihr, which looks almost the same as it did in the 16th century. On your walking tour, admire historic architecture as well as famous sights, such as the Dolder Gate. Those wishing a more active excursion can cycle through the scenic wine country, or go on a hike in the Black Forest, a magical land full of cultural traditions Alternatively, you may wish to go to Freiburg, founded in 1120 and home to the Freiburg’s Münster, a Gothic cathedral said to have “the most beautiful spire on earth.” (B,L,D)

DAY 12 Basel     

DISEMBARKATION

Disembark the ship and bid farewell to Switzerland as you prepare for your return flight home. (B)


Tour Itinerary:

Day 1: ARRIVE IN ZURICH

Welcome to Zurich! At 6 pm, meet your Tour Director and travel companions for a welcome dinner at your hotel. (D)

Day 2: ZURICH-EXCURSION TO RHINE FALLS

ZURICH Orientation walk of the Old Town includes sights of the Fraumunsterkirche. RHINE FALLS Take pictures of the waterfalls. (B)

Day 3: ZURICH-BERNE-CHILLON CASTLE-LAKE GENEVA

BERNE Guided walking tour includes the Old Town, a stop at Bear Park and a panoramic view of the city from Rose Garden. CHILLON Guided visit of the castle. (B)

Day 4: LAKE GENEVA

LAKE GENEVA YourChoice Excursions include one of the following activities of your choice: SIP: I Lavaux This Place! Visit the lovely Lavaux region, one of Switzerland's most beautiful regions - carved by the Rhone Glacier and the masterful masonry of 12th-century Cistercian monks who built kilometers of stone walls and terraces that are still cherished and tended to by the winegrowers today. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to bountiful vineyards where renowned wines are nurtured by sunlight reflected by the waters of Lake Geneva and the warmth of the stone walls by night. Hop on a Swiss train to experience mountains and the magic of Switzerland's second-largest wine-growing canton and take a stroll around the timeless vineyards! TASTE: Swiss Chocolate & Cheese, Please! The only thing more inspiring than Switzerland's stunning scenery is its food! A sweet adventure awaits you at the Maison Cailler chocolaterie (chocolate shop). Explore the story of Swiss chocolate through a series of interactive, multi-sensory experiences, and uncover a few secrets along the way! Continue on to visit Maison du Gruyère and learn all the secrets behind this signature Swiss specialty. Spend some free time in the picturesque town of Gruyeres. Stroll through its pedestrian centre with Medieval cobblestones and fountains. A real charmer! (B)

Day 5: LAKE GENEVA-LUGANO

LAKE GENEVA Take a gondola ride to the pinnacle of glacial terrain at Glacier 3000 for soaring sights high above Lake Geneva. Explore the spectacular scenery and endless skies with a walk on the glacier or spend time at the fun park during your visit. (B)

Day 6: LUGANO

LUGANO YourChoice Excursions include one of the following activities of your choice: HIKE: "Olive You," Lugano! Get your hiking shoes ready for this walk through an olive grove path. Soak in breathtaking views of Lake Lugano and its surrounding mountains. Afterwards enjoy an aperitivo and some time to stroll in the quaint village of Gandria. EXPLORE: The Right Train of Mind Depart from Lugano for a guided walking tour of the bustling city of Locarno. Get on board the Centovalli train and meet the farmers who will share century- old stories and traditions of the valley together with local specialties and a glass of good earthy wine. RELAX: Zen It Out Spend the day on Monte Tamaro, one of the most appreciated destinations in the region given the haven of activities to choose from: entertainment, natural beauty and trekking. Climb up to the summit via cable car and take in view of the surroundings? Or spend some "me" time at the spa? Or do both! (B)

Day 7: LUGANO-EXCURSION ON LAKE COMO

LUGANO Drive to Menaggio, on Lake Como. Embark on a boat cruise to take in the sights around Como's dazzling lake all the way to Bellagio. Marvel at matchless views of the Italian Alps as you float past forested hills, charming lakeside villages, peaceful bays, exotic gardens, and the elegant villas of Versace, Mussolini, Clooney, and other glitterati. Next continue on to the town of Como for some free time. This evening, enjoy a farewell dinner at a local restaurant (B,D)

Day 8: LUGANO

Your holiday ends with breakfast in the morning. (The nearest airport is Milan.) (B)


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Terms & Conditions

Prices listed are per person in Australian/New Zealand Dollars, based on twin occupancy, including all discounts unless otherwise stated. The offer is subject to availability at time of booking and shown on the lowest inside category available at the time.  Fares are capacity controlled and are subject to change at any time without notice. Prices/Offers are correct as at 21 April 2024 and can be withdrawn without notice.   Cabin categories include prepaid government fees and port taxes unless otherwise stated.  Hotels may charge resort fees not included in this package, payable direct upon check in. Visas are not included.  Payments made by credit card will incur a surcharge. Air credit is applicable on airline of choice, subject to availability and subject to the carriers’ flight schedules and conditions.