Christmas Markets on The Rhine (14 Days)

Cruise Line: AmaWaterways
Ship: Varies by Departure
Amsterdam, Netherlands to Zurich, Switzerland
Tour Segment  Cruise Segment
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Arrive in Amsterdam and check into your hotel.

Amsterdam, Netherlands

A city tour of Amsterdam provides the perfect overview before enjoying leisure time on your own. (B)

Zaanse Schans, Netherlands
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Check out of your hotel and before transferring to the ship, visit Zaanse Schans windmills and village. (B,D)

Amsterdam, Netherlands

The famous canals of Amsterdam await discovery on your scenic canal cruise. Tall narrow homes along the water, the beautiful wooden Skinny Bridge, and the Anne Frank House are a few of the highlights you will see. Later in the day, set sail out of Amsterdam (B,L,D)

Cologne, Germany

Enjoy cruising to Cologne, home to one of Germany's most revered Gothic masterpieces, the Cologne Cathedral. Join a guided tour through the enchanting Old Town. Explore the UNESCO-designated cathedral and then visit one of Europe's largest and most renowned Christmas markets located in front of the cathedral. Alternatively, ride a bike along the Rhine and through the historic Stadtgarten; or visit a local tavern to taste Cologne's traditional Kölsch beer and Reibekuchen—potato pancakes served with apple sauce. (B,L,D)

Rhine Gorge, Germany
Rüdesheim am Rhein, Germany

Cruise through the castle-laden Rhine River Gorge before reaching the winemaking town of Rüdesheim. Once in Rüdesheim, you will have three choices of morning excursions. Wine connoisseurs will want to go to a wine cellar for a wine tasting. Those who wish to soar high above the vineyards can take a gondola ride to the Niederwalddenkmal Statue. Or, for a more active adventure, join a guided bike tour through the town and along the Rhine River. Later in the day, you have two more options. Visit Siegfried's Mechanical Music Museum, home to a remarkable collection of self-playing musical instruments, or taste one of the town's special delights, Rüdesheimer coffee. You'll also have plenty of time to enjoy Christmas traditions from all over the world at Rüdesheim Christmas market. (B,L,D)

Ludwigshafen, Germany
Heidelberg, Germany
Ludwigshafen, Germany

You have the choice to explore two of Germany's historically rich cities, along with their festive Christmas markets. Visit Heidelberg, a city that will capture your heart with its mighty castle and historic university. While here, wander along one of Europe's longest pedestrian shopping streets, the Hauptstrasse, soaking up the Yuletide celebrations at the town's Christmas markets. Alternatively, you can explore one of Germany's oldest cities, Speyer, known for the largest Romanesque cathedral in Europe—a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You'll also have time to visit its Christmas market in front of the "Old Mint" (Alte Münze) in the famous Maximilianstraße, with a view of the romantic imperial cathedral (Kaiserdom). (B,L,D)

Strasbourg, France
Gengenbach, Germany
Strasbourg, France

Strasbourg is even more alluring during the season of Advent. The Christkindelsmärik dates back to 1570, making it the oldest Christmas market in France. Enjoy a panoramic bus tour that takes you past the Parc de l'Orangerie, the European Parliament, and the Place de la République. Afterwards, walk through the historic town center on the Grande Île, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and through the lovely "La Petite France" district, where you will see the Cathédrale Notre-Dame with its famous astronomical clock and then visit the town's famous Christmas market. You can also choose to explore Strasbourg's different districts by bicycle. During the afternoon, visit Gengenbach Christmas market where every year the locals countdown to Christmas with a 24-day larger-than-life Advent calendar. (B,L,D)

Breisach, Germany
Riquewihr, France
Breisach, Germany

Visit the enchanting Alsatian town of Riquewihr beautifully dressed in her holiday finery with twinkling decorations and a lively Christmas market. On your walking tour, admire historical architecture, as well as famous sights, such as the Dolder Tower. Alternatively, you may wish to visit Freiburg, founded in 1120, and home to Freiburg's Münster, a Gothic cathedral constructed of red sandstone, as well as its enchanting Christmas market. Those wishing a more active excursion will want to cycle through the scenic countryside; or go on an excursion to the Black Forest, a magical land full of cultural traditions, as well as home to elaborate cuckoo clocks, striking half-timber houses, ruined castles, and quaint towns. (B,L,D)

DAY 10
Basel, Switzerland
Luzern, Switzerland

After disembarking your ship, you'll go on a highlights tour of Basel before being transferred to Lucerne. Once in Lucerne, get acquainted with the city on a walking tour along with a visit to the Christmas market before checking into your hotel. (B)

DAY 11
Luzern, Switzerland

The iconic Lion Monument, which you'll visit was sculpted in memory for the Swiss Guards massacred during the French Revolution in 1792. It has captured the hearts and minds of visitors for centuries, including Mark Twain who praised it as "the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world". You'll also visit the spectacular medieval walls and towers, dating back to the 13th century. Located around the Musegg Wall area, the towers rise high over the city, giving great panoramic views of Lucerne, the Reuss River, and the surrounding mountain scenery. There are a total of nine towers, including one featuring the oldest clock in the city. Afterwards, soak up the festive atmosphere of this medieval gem wandering through its Christmas market located at the Franziskanerplatz and enjoy the festive atmosphere with a mug of holiday cheer, glühwein. (B)

DAY 12
Luzern, Switzerland
Vitznau, Switzerland
Zurich, Switzerland

Cruise across the tranquil waters of Lake Lucerne to Vitznau, where you will board a motorcoach for a scenic drive through the countryside to Zurich, which seamlessly blends its historic past with its progressive future. Once in Zurich, check into your hotel. (B)

DAY 13
Zurich, Switzerland

Join a walking tour of Zurich and as you do experience the magic of the city dressed in her holiday best. You'll visit Zurich's Christmas markets, including the largest indoor Christmas market in Europe located in Zurich's Main Train Station. An absolute highlight is a 50-foot-tall Christmas tree decorated with thousands of sparkling Swarovski crystals. (B)

DAY 14
Zurich, Switzerland

After breakfast, bid farewell to Switzerland and prepare for your return flight home. (B)

Christmas Markets on The Rhine map

About Us

At AmaWaterways, we love what we do - providing our guests with the best travel experiences possible. In fact, "Ama" is derived from the Latin word for "love." It is a concept that permeates every aspect of our river cruises, from the design of our ships to the development of our itineraries to the high levels of service we deliver to our guests. Experience more ways to discover, more ways to indulge and more onboard amenities. With an award-winning fleet in Europe, Vietnam, Cambodia and Africa, critically acclaimed dining and unique tour options, you will have the trip of a lifetime on our cruises.

Insider Tip

AmaWaterways is proud to be the only river cruise line inducted into La Chaine des Rotisseurs, one of the world's most prestigious culinary organizations.

Terms & Conditions

Brochure prices are per-person, U.S. dollars, based on double occupancy of a cabin, or standard hotel room, unless indicated otherwise. | Single rates are available for the cruise-only, at a supplement of plus-50% for standard rooms, plus-100% for other rooms, such as deluxe rooms and suites. | Single rates for land are available at a supplement. | Please see individual itineraries for amount of the supplement. | Pricing accuracy is assured only at time of printing. | If any of the cost factors increases, such as airfare, port or dock charges, fuel, insurance, taxes, surcharges or other, we reserve the right to increase cruise or cruise tour prices without notice.

Cancellation Policy: For any cruise/land booking, whether under deposit, partially paid, or paid in full, including air packages, the following travel agent or guest-requested situations are considered cancellations and penalties will apply as noted below: changes to departure date; substitutions of itinerary; substitution of another person for original booked guest(s); or changing to a promotional fare. All cancellations must be in writing. For all air-inclusive packages cancelled after issuance of an airline ticket, the air portion of the refund, if any, will be processed only after the return of airline ticket. The following cancellation charges will be assessed for all written cancellations received prior to departure up to the scheduled time of departure.

Cancellation received | Following charges will apply: (Broken out by days before departure) 121 days or more is $200 per person | 120-90 days is $400 per person | 89-60 days is 35% of full fare | 59-30 days is 50% of full fare | 29-7 days is 80% of full fare | 6 days prior to sailing is 100% cancellation. Full Fare is defined as the full cost of any cruise, land or air component purchased from AmaWaterways. All air purchased through AmaWaterways has a cancellation penalty of $350 per person for Economy and $600 per person for Business class. In the event you purchase a non-refundable ticket, the full fare is under penalty.

*Certain airline tickets, including all intra-Asia Flights within 90 days of departure and published price tickets, are 100% non-refundable. Penalty rates shown are for flight arrangements deposited/booked from July 1, 2014 onward. Except as otherwise provided in your Passenger Ticket Contract, after travel begins, there is no refund for unused services, or unused portions of cruise, cruise/tour or airfare.

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The trademarks VIRTUOSO, the Globe Swirl Logo and SPECIALISTS IN THE ART OF TRAVEL are registered trademarks of Virtuoso, Ltd. Virtuoso, Ltd. has a U.S. copyright registration for the Globe Swirl Logo, ©2000. All rights reserved. Virtuoso CST#2069091-50. California CST# 2069091; TA# 808 - Registered Iowa Travel Agency; Washington UBI # 601 554 183. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

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