4 DAYS FROM $899
4 DAYS FROM $1,949
Nestled deep in the heart of the Bavarian Alps, Oberammergau is one of the postcard-perfect Germany villages filled with charming homes decorated with Lüftlmalerei wall paintings, intricate wood carvings, and a small tight-knit community of just 5,100. It’s always special indeed, but once every 10 years this village expands to an even larger community of the faithful or just about anyone interested in history for one of the most fascinating, long-running spectacles in the world: the Oberammergau Passion Play. Occurring every decade since 1634, with roles depicting the life of Jesus filled by just about every villager, this 380-year event in the making will be presented exclusively for Vantage travelers on special Switzerland, the Heart of the Rhine & Moselle trip extensions. You’ll enjoy some of the best show seats and the most enriching features as only Vantage can present them — but hurry, tickets sell out months in advance so you should reserve this experience today.
Enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime experience on these 2020 departures: May 17, August 1, August 29, and September 26.
Depart home for Basel, Switzerland
Today, you’ll board your flight to Basel.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Transfer to the Amsterdam airport for your flight home or join your optional extension
Depart for home today after an unforgettable journey.
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.