Switzerland, the Heart of the Rhine & Moselle featuring Oberammergau extension - 2020

14-night Rhine and Moselle River Cruise with Amsterdam, Nijmegen, Cologne, Cochem, Schweich, Bernkastel, Trier, Koblenz, Mainz, Speyer, Strasbourg, Alsatian Wine Route, Basel
  • $313
  • 15
  • 25
16 DAYS FROM $5,298
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A remarkable Rhine and Moselle river cruise is made even more unforgettable with a once-in-a-lifetime addition: the Oberammergau Passion Play. This epic depiction of the life of Christ, which takes place only once every decade, has been staged for nearly 400 years. There is simply nothing like it, which is one of the reasons why 500,000 people will come to see it during its run. This experience (on select 2020 departures only) can’t be replicated anywhere else and is available to you on deluxe small-group tours with Vantage when you add on exclusive extension to Oberammergau. Plus, with Vantage you can be assured of the best seats and accommodations among American cruise lines today.

This incredible event is reason enough to travel on this European tour — and yet you’ll experience so much more. Storybook scenery, charming traditions, striking architecture, unique history . . . the list goes on. On this European cruise vacation, you’ll experience 11 guided tours and an eye-popping five UNESCO World Heritage Sites along some of the most gorgeous stretches of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers.

Time may seem to have stood still as you step upon ancient stones in postcard-pretty German towns such as Cochem, Trier, and Bernkastel. You’ll experience half-timbered gems from Rüdesheim, Germany, to Basel, Switzerland, as well as France's Alsatian Wine Route, Amsterdam, the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, and more.

Taking a solo vacation? Vantage is the only travel company whose river ships include cabins built specifically for solo travelers, with free Single Supplements. You'll enjoy free Single Supplements on every Oberammergau extension, as well (first come, first served!). We’ve also designed this itinerary to give you more opportunities for independent exploring and for staying active. Take one of the ship’s bikes for a spin along the shore, join a longer walk or hike, and sign up for onboard cooking classes. Join us and see for yourself what makes this river cruise in Europe so remarkable — and be sure to add the optional Oberammergau event that is sure to be a highlight of your journey (and year)!

Basel to Amsterdam

Pre-Trip Extension

Bruges, Belgium

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DAY 1:

Depart home for Basel, Switzerland

Today, you’ll board your flight to Basel.

DAY 2:

Arrive in Basel

Arrive in Basel today. If you purchased your airfare from Vantage, a representative will meet you and arrange transfer to the pier in Basel, where you will board your Deluxe river ship and officially begin your European river cruise. If you were already in Europe for our unforgettable Oberammergau pre-trip extension, you’ll transfer to Basel with some time for lunch and exploring in Lake Constance.

Included Meals:


DAY 3:

Set off on a half-day tour of Basel

Located on the Rhine, Basel traces its history as far back as the early Celts and Roman Empire. You’ll take a walking tour, and then enjoy an afternoon at leisure. We'll have shuttles available to take travelers to the city center. Celebrate this evening at the Captain's Welcome Party and Dinner.

Biking Opportunity: Explore the nearby Roman excavation site of Augusta Raurica during this 17-mile route. Click here for details.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 4:

Immerse yourself in the Alsatian Wine Route on a full-day tour

Enjoy a full-day Alsatian Wine Route tour today, with a visit to Colmar and the famous Unterlinden Museum. In Riquewihr, known for its Riesling wines, enjoy a walking tour and money for lunch as you spend time exploring on your own. You may also partake in wine tastings at different wine cellars using a voucher provided by Vantage.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 5:

Embark on a walking and canal tour in Strasbourg

Unforgettable Moment: Bonjour and welcome to picturesque Strasbourg! Following a morning drive from Kehl over the border into France, take part in an included walking and canal boat tour that takes you to the elegant Palais Rohan, Cathedral Notre Dame, the ultra-modern European Union Parliament, the quaint shops and parks of “La Petite France,” and the Tanners’ Quarter. There will be afternoon shuttle buses to the city center. You can also join an optional Black Forest tour, with a cake demonstration and tasting. Tonight, enjoy evening entertainment aboard the ship.

Biking Opportunity: Explore the heart of Strasbourg’s center city during an easy 4-mile route. Click here for details.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
Optional Tour: Black Forest Tour

Black Forest Tour

  • Approximate Cost: $79 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4 hours
  • Location: Strasbourg, France
  • When: Afternoon tour

You’ll ride along the scenic Bundesstrasse 500, an impressive auto route that’s commonly referred to as the Schwarzwaldhochstrasse, or “Black Forest High Street.” Zoom along a road that rises dramatically from 200 to 3,000 feet above sea level in a mere 10-15 mile stretch. You’ll arrive at the historic Berghotel Mummelsee, a popular tourist destination for the past 120 years. You’ll head to the hotel restaurant for a Black Forest cake-making demonstration and tasting. Afterwards, you may stroll around the lake and shop for traditional Black Forest products like cuckoo clocks, cherry liqueur, and more. 

DAY 6:

Marvel at the Speyer Cathedral and savor the warmth of a home-hosted dinner

You'll have the morning free to enjoy Strasbourg, with a shuttle provided to the town center, or choose to join an optional tour to charming Heidelberg. Later, you’ll depart for a tour of Speyer and its eponymous 11th-century cathedral. Once one of the largest cathedrals in the world, this UNESCO World Heritage Site remains the final resting place for many former emperors and heads of state. Unforgettable Moment: You'll enjoy some delightful coffee and cake in the home of a local, giving you the opportunity to chat and learn more about this city and its culture. 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
Optional Tour: Heidelberg Tour

Heidelberg Tour

  • Approximate Cost: $59 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4.5 hours
  • Location: Heidelberg, Germany
  • When: Morning tour

Join an optional tour to Heidelberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that is home to Germany’s oldest college, Heidelberg University. Enjoy panoramic views from the plaza of imposing Heidelberg Castle, a Gothic-Renaissance ruin of red stone looming above the downtown and see the castles famed Heidelberg Tun, an immense wine barrel, now empty, with a capacity of some 58,000 gallons.

DAY 7:

See the Gutenberg Bible in Mainz and learn how to paint

Awaken in Mainz, once the seat of the Holy Roman Empire, where you'll enjoy breakfast on the ship. Then you’ll visit the Johannes Gutenberg Museum, dedicated to the inventor of moveable type and home to one of the original Gutenberg Bibles. You'll have time this afternoon to explore Mainz on your own, and later, enjoy a cooking demonstration where our expert chef will share some tips and tricks on how to make local delicacies. 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 8:

Two UNESCO Sites: Boppard and the Upper Middle Rhine Valley

You'll take in the passing scenery in the morning as we cruise the Upper Middle Rhine Valley with commentary from the ship’s bridge on the legend of Lorelei. Later, arrive in picturesque Boppard, where your Cruise Director will give an informational talk on the city and you'll have free time to explore. This valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is known for its fine Riesling wines along with its ties to the Roman Empire. Tonight's movie night features the film Patton.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 9:

The oldest city in Germany is yours to explore, including the UNESCO-listed Roman ruins

Discover Trier, the oldest city in Germany, on a guided tour as you visit the amphitheater and view the Porta Nigra (a massive stone gate), the Roman Bridge, and Barbara Baths. Unforgettable Moment: You'll also enjoy lunch ashore at Weingut Georg Fritz von Nell. Spend this afternoon at leisure, relaxing or exploring on your own. 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 10:

Enjoy a walking exploration of Bernkastel and sample some local wines

This morning, enjoy a walking tour of Bernkastel, known as the “International Town of Vines and Wine,” for its high-quality Rieslings. The surrounding landscape boasts massive fortresses and fairy-tale castles, and the town’s half-timbered houses lining the banks of the Moselle river will enchant you. We'll set sail later in the afternoon for a sunset cruise to Schweich.  Cultural Connection: Learn about Germany’s light and fruity vintages during a wine tasting on board. Zum Wohl! Tonight features a lecture on the Romans.

Biking Opportunity: Enjoy scenic vistas as you follow this path along the beautiful Moselle River during a 19-mile route. Click here for details.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 11:

Discover Schweich on your own, or opt to visit Luxembourg

You’ll have the entire day at leisure to explore Schweich on your own or just relax aboard ship. Alternatively, make an optional full-day excursion to Luxembourg, where you’ll pay your respects at the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial, the solemn resting place for more than 5,000 US soldiers. You’ll also take a panoramic tour of Luxembourg City. This evening, enjoy The Marriage of Maria Braun during another Movie Night aboard the ship.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
Optional Tour: Luxembourg Tour

Luxembourg Tour

  • Approximate Cost: $69 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 8 hours
  • Location: Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
  • When: Full-day tour

Enjoy a full-day excursion to Luxembourg, where you’ll pay your respects at the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial, solemn resting place for more than 5,000 US soldiers. You’ll also take a panoramic tour of Luxemburg City. After your tour, you may explore the small yet picturesque city on your own.

DAY 12:

Meet the “count” of Reichsburg Castle, sip some wine, soak up the scenery

Enjoy a morning guided visit to fairy-tale Reichsburg Castle, perched atop a steep hill in the quaint town of Cochem along the Moselle River. Meet the “count” in the castle and enjoy a glass of the fine Riesling produced in the area. Later, enjoy scenic cruising with some commentary from your crew. 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 13:

Explore Cologne on a walking tour and taste some distinctive Kölsch beer

Enjoy a morning walking tour of the wonderful city of Cologne. You'll also enjoy a special tasting of Kölsch beer, a distinctive style that the New York Times once stated was like "drinking an entire culture." Afterward, relax on the cruise and enjoy the scenic views as you cruise towards the Dutch border.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 14:

Embark on a walking tour of Nijmegen, the oldest city in the Netherlands

Today, embark on a walking tour of Nijmegen. This is the oldest city in the Netherlands, and the entire region is teeming with stories from World War II. In the afternoon, you’ll learn a bit about the local language during a Dutch lesson while also enjoying scenic sailing.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

DAY 15:

A cruise along Amsterdam’s canal ring and a visit to the esteemed Rijksmuseum

This morning, visit Amsterdam's Rijksmuseum for a guided tour. Afterwards, you'll get the perfect view of Amsterdam’s historic center on a narrated canal cruise along the city’s 17th-century canal ring, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This evening, bring your tour to a close with the Captain's Farewell Reception and Dinner. 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
Optional Tour: Jewish Cultural Quarter Tour

Jewish Cultural Quarter Tour

  • Approximate Cost: $75 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 3 hours
  • Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • When: Afternoon Tour

During centuries of persecution in Europe, Ashkenazi and Sephardic Jews fled to Amsterdam in order to live and worship in peace. That changed during World War II, when the Nazis invaded Holland and turned a theater in the Jodenbuurt Quarter into a deportation center and this once-prosperous area into the infamous Jewish Ghetto. On this tour, you’ll visit this theater as well as the rest of the Jewish Cultural Quarter, which includes the Portuguese Synagogue and other monuments in this historic section of the city. Join us on this tour that highlights the powerful story of this unique part of Amsterdam.

Please note: On Saturdays, the synagogue is not available for visits and will be replaced by the Jewish Historical Museum.

DAY 16:

Transfer to the Amsterdam airport for your flight home or join your optional extension

Depart for home today after an unforgettable journey. 

Included Meals:


Post-Trip Extension

Oberammergau Passion Play with Munich (May 3)

FROM: $1949 PER PERSON | 4 DAYS | $487 PER DAY

Oberammergau Passion Play with Munich (July 18, Aug 15, Sept 12)

FROM: $2149 PER PERSON | 4 DAYS | $537 PER DAY

Important Notice:The above day-by-day itinerary is preliminary and subject to change. If changes occur while on tour, you will be notified by your Cruise Director or regional expert. In addition, should there be an extreme change in water levels, Vantage will do everything possible to provide either the included excursion or an alternate excursion at Vantage’s discretion.

Please Note: Port times & itineraries are subject to change. Fluctuating water levels may affect itinerary.

Contact Vantage

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Switzerland, the Heart of the Rhine & Moselle featuring Oberammergau extension - 2020

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