Experience the Rhine and Cologne River Cruise (Amsterdam - Basel)
Full Board (+1)
- Sail through The Netherlands, Germany, France & Switzerland on this Rhine & Cologne River cruise
- Stay 7 nights on board a 4 star MS Amadeus vessel.
- Ports of call include Amsterdam, Cologne, Strasbourg & Basel.
- Enjoy guided walking tours & leisure time in Koblenz & Heidelberg.
- Embark on optional excursions at each port of call, such as Wine Tasting in Cochem.
- Unwind with plenty of leisure time to relax on-board or explore each destination at your own pace.
Book Your Trip From €2518pp
Book Your Trip From €2119pp
Your Rhine and Cologne River Cruise (Amsterdam - Basel) Holiday Overview
Take a Rhine River Cruise and discover some of the most stunning towns and cities of Europe with us. Before embarking on our Rhine River Cruise holiday, our adventure will begin with a guided city tour of Amsterdam and then we'll board our 4 star MS Amadeus ship to set sail. The ship will take you into the centre of most cities we'll visit, as it's much smaller than an ocean liner, giving us more time to visit the attractions and enjoy our time ashore. On our holiday, we’ll enjoy tours with local guides and free time for sightseeing in Cologne, Koblenz and Heidelberg. There are also optional excursions to avail of, such as wine tasting in Cochem and a walking tour of Strasbourg. We'll say goodbye to our ship in Basel, our final stop, but before our holiday ends we'll explore the city centre on a guided tour and have an extra nights stay in either Basel or Zurich. Each port we visit on our Rhine River Cruise holiday has so much to offer and is full of cultural gems and historical sights.
Please Note: This holiday may not be suitable for those with reduced mobility. For more details, please contact us.
Activity Level: Leisurely
Travel to the Netherlands
Arrive in Amsterdam
Upon arrival in Amsterdam, you will be met by your local guide who will assist you in the transfer to Amsterdam port. A guided Amsterdam city tour including a canal cruise will be provided en-route. (dependent on flight times) Highlights will include the city’s many canals and dancing houses, the Central Station, Damsquare with its Palace and much more.
Embark on your River Cruise
After an early afternoon at leisure, you will be transferred to Amsterdam port with assistance. Settle into your cabin and explore the range of facilities on board your MS Amadeus ship has to offer as you set sail along the Rhine River. Sit back with a welcome cocktail in one of the lounge areas, followed by a tasty welcome dinner.
Amsterdam & Hoorn
Optional North Holland and Amsterdam City Tour Excursion
Today, there will be an optional ‘North Holland and Amsterdam City Tour’ excursion in which you may partake if you wish (payable locally). If you remain on board, discover the beauty of the Dutch waterways as you sail towards Hoorn.
Cruise to Hoorn
During the early afternoon, you will cruise along the scenic Rhine River and arrive in the picturesque Dutch town of Hoorn for a short stop.
Guided Tour of Cologne
Today, the ship will arrive into Cologne in the afternoon. Here, enjoy an included walking tour of the city where you can explore the surroundings of the famous Cathedral and the Old Town. In the narrow, cobbled streets of the old town and in the busy squares, such as the Old Market or the Hay Market, you will get a feeling for life in this city, both past and present.
River Cruise to Cochem
This morning, you will have some free time to enjoy the boat and take in the passing landscape as you sail down the Rhine, onto the town of Cochem where you will arrive in the early afternoon.
Please note 09 June 2021 departures will dock in Koblenz instead and remain docked in Koblenz overnight.
Optional Walking Tour & Wine Tasting
In the most romantic part of the Moselle Valley, where the river curves between two hiking paradises - Eifel and Hunsrück - lies the old town of Cochem. There will be an optional walking tour and wine tasting this afternoon (payable locally). The magnificent Reichsburg Castle, situated on a precipitous rock high above the town, dominates the landscape. The town of Cochem itself is a sight worth seeing; highlights include its narrow streets and twisty alleys, the lovingly restored half-timbered houses with the typical slate roofs, the historical market-place, medieval town gates, churches and walls.
Please note for 09 June 2021 departures, this optional walking tour will take place by coach from/to Koblenz.
Koblenz & Rüdesheim
Guided Tour of Koblenz
Early this morning, you will arrive in Koblenz where you will have an included guided walking tour of the city. Koblenz is one of the most beautiful and oldest towns in Germany, with over 2,000 years of history. On the guided walk through the romantic streets between the St. Castor Basilica and the Liebfrauenkirche (the Church of our Beloved Lady) you will discover the most important sights of Koblenz. This tour would not be complete without a visit to the Emperor Wilhelm Memorial at the famous German Corner and the town’s landmark, the Schängel Fountain at the Town Hall. At the end of the walk you will reach the confluence of the Moselle and Rhine rivers and the ropeway of Koblenz.
Free Time in Rüdesheim
Later in the day, you will arrive in the romantic town of Rüdesheim, surrounded by gentle sloping vineyards and famous for its local wine, brandy and specialty coffee (careful - the local coffee and brandy are married in the "Rüdesheimer Kaffee" concoction!). After you have had time to enjoy your visit on your own, your ship leaves the harbour late in the evening towards Mannheim.
Heidelberg & Speyer
Excursion to Heidelberg
On this morning, your ship will be docked in Mannheim and from there you will be taken on an included excursion to Heidelberg. Heidelberg is a world famous university city on the Neckar River. The town is one of the few German cities with a widely preserved baroque Old Town. The tour through Heidelberg begins with a visit to the Castle. The formerly splendid residence made of red sandstone is now in ruins. However, it is arguably the most beautiful ruin in all of Germany. The castle tour leads into the castle garden. From the Grand Terrace you will have a wonderful view of the city and the Neckar River. The tour continues with a stroll through the enchanting old town, to the Karl-Theodor Bridge, the late-gothic Church of the Holy Spirit and the town hall.
Free Time in Speyer
Following lunch on the boat, sail to Speyer. Speyer is one of Germany’s oldest cities which is located along the banks of the Rhine, in the Rhineland-Palatinate state of southwest Germany. The 11th century Imperial Cathedral of Speyer is one of Germany's largest and most important. Its crypt contains the tombs of eight German emperors and kings as well as several bishops. Speyer was also a centre for Jewish scholarship in the medieval period. You will depart Speyer around 19.30 on this day and enjoy the Captain’s Gala Dinner on board while the ship travels to Strasbourg in the evening.
The ship will arrive into the French city of Strasbourg, which lies just across the German border, west of the Rhine. An optional walking tour of the city will be offered by Lueftner Cruises in the morning (payable locally). Alternatively, you can explore Strasbourg at your own pace with the use of the complimentary Travel Department shuttle taking in the city’s highlights, including its famous 15th Century cathedral, with its impressive spire and medieval astronomical clock.
Cruise to Basel
After you have had time to enjoy your visit on your own, your ship leaves the harbour after mid-day, just in time to enjoy a fabulous lunch on board and savour the first-class culinary delights as you sail the picturesque Rhine River towards Basel.
Disembark and Basel City Tour
It is time to say goodbye to your Amadeus ship after a full week of delights. After breakfast, you will meet with your local guide and be transferred to Basel city centre for a guided tour and some free time to explore at your own pace.
Overnight stay in Basel or Zurich
This afternoon you will transfer to either your hotel in Basel or Zurich (date dependent) and check in for a final evening of your holiday.
Transfer to Zurich airport
Today transfer from Basel or Zurich to Zurich airport for an early morning flight home. Time to start thinking about planning your next holiday!
Know before you go
Will I be met at the airport?
You will be met on arrival at your destination airport and transferred to your accommodation. You will be accompanied on all included excursions by your Travel Department guide. Your expert local guide is also available to give you tips and advice on any aspect of your holiday.
Do I need a Visa?
Please visit our visa page for information on requirements for each country's entry requirements
What if there is an emergency?
We have local representatives in all of our destinations who are available 24/7 as well as an emergency contact number for our offices in Ireland should you ever need it.
Stories you might like
A gentle, meandering river cruise is one of the best ways to see and understand a new place. The rivers are always the lifeline of the cities they flow through - the beating heart. It’s on the banks of rivers that cities were founded and flourished.
A river cruise holiday is the perfect way to discover multiple destinations. Our tour leader Rhona O'Connor has detailed her experience and provided insight on leading our Travel Department customers on the Danube Rhapsody River Cruise (Passau - Passau) back in August 2019.