The French Alsace and German Rhine area
9 days / 8 nights
Arrival at Zurich Airport. Meeting with our tour escort and travel by coach to Strasbourg. After settling into our hotel, we take an orientation walk around Strasbourg, followed by dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight in Strasbourg.
Strasbourg in Alsace is one of the most beautiful cities in the world – not least because of its landmark, the cathedral (in French: Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Strasbourg), which celebrated its millenial in 2015. The place in front of the cathedral is one of the most beautiful marketplaces in whole Europe, also because of its picturesque half-timbered houses with four to five floors. The „Maison Kammerzell“, one of those houses, is a real showpiece on this place. We visit the cathedral and the town centre in the morning, ending with the fine collection of Old Masters in the Musée des Beaux Arts. Afternoon is free to explore the city on your own. Optional visit of the Strasbourg Modern and Contemporary Art Museum built on the banks of the river Ill. It houses collections of paintings, sculptures, decorative artefacts and stained-glass windows dating from impressionism to modern times. On the 1st floor of the museum, the restaurant-cafe terrace offers a magnificent view of the river Ill and Petite France. Overnight Strasbourg.
This morning we travel by coach to Colmar. Alsace is renowned for its medieval heritage and the old town of Colmar has been left untouched for hundreds of years. Colmar’s old quarter is as complete as it is lovely, with street after street of corbelled wooden houses and sophisticated renaissance palaces decorated with flowers. Our local guide shows us the medieval streets and churches as well as the beautiful canal district known as Little Venice. After a break for lunch, we visit Kaysersberg which is another charming Alsatian located on the famous wine route (Route des Vins). The town is located just 12 km from Colmar surrounded by green hills where the vines grow. Through the village flows – partly underground – the river La Weiss, which adds an extra charm to this place. Overnight in Strasbourg.
On our way to Heidelberg we make a stop at the beautiful spa town of Baden-Baden. This small but impressively cosmopolitan city reveals that the elegant Belle Époque period is still alive and well. Baden-Baden was established over 2,000 years ago as a place for people to relax and reconnect with themselves. For many generations, wealthy folks have flocked here to see and be seen, and to take the healing thermal waters for which the town is famous. On our walking tour and time spent on your own you will discover some of the town's treasures ranging from the ruins of Roman baths to the ornate, 250-year-old Belle Époque casino, the Kurhaus, which movie star Marlene Dietrich once described as "the most beautiful casino in the world". We continue to Heidelberg in the later afternoon. Overnight and dinner in Heidelberg.
This morning we discover Heidelberg on a guided city tour, home to the oldest university in Germany. We will visit the imposing red sandstone ruins of Heidelberg Castle originally built in the 12th century. This hilltop Gothic masterpiece has encountered turbulent times but still stands as a dominant symbol of the city. Balance of the day is at leisure in Heidelberg to discover the enchanting alleys and lanes in the old town with its small gardens, museums and lovely galleries. Dinner and overnight in Heidelberg.
Today we explore the history of the central Rhine region, on our way to Trier. In the morning we visit Schwetzingen Palace, the 18th-century summer residence of the Prince Electors. After touring the apartments, we enjoy the extensive gardens, which fuse elements of the French formal garden with the new craze for the English landscape garden. We continue to Speyer, where, after a break for lunch, we visit the impressive Romanesque cathedral, built by the Holy Roman Emperors and used as their burial chapel. In the mid-afternoon, we make our way to Trier. Dinner and overnight in Trier.
Discover this ancient city – which lays claim to being the oldest in Germany – during a walking tour that includes the Porta Nigra, a large Roman city gate, visit the High Cathedral of St. Peter, and see the unusual early-gothic Dreikönigenhaus. Trier is often referred to as the cradle of German wine culture In the afternoon learn all about the cultivation of wines and the history of wine production in this area. We will visit a wine cellar, and top it off with wine tasting and sampling of delicious cuisines. Dinner and overnight in Trier.
We leave Heidelberg this morning, heading to Rudesheim and tour the section to Boppard by boat today. The Middle Rhine is most spectacular: cliffs, forests, vineyards, castles, and the enchanting Lorelai Rock. We disembark in Boppard to enjoy some time in this medieval town. In the afternoon, we drive to Frankfurt by coach. After arriving in Frankfurt, we have our farewell dinner at a local restaurant.
Transfer to Frankfurt airport.
Transfer to Frankfurt airport.
Our prices include:
- Deluxe motor coach throughout as per itinerary
- English speaking tour escort throughout
- Accommodation at 4★ hotels in double/twin room
- 3 nights in with Bed & Breakfast in Strasbourg
- 3 nights at with half board in Heidelberg
- 2 nights with half board in Trier
- 1 night with bed & breakfast in Frankfurt
- 1 welcome dinner at local restaurant in Strasbourg
- 1 farewell dinner at local restaurant in Frankfurt
- Visit of a wine cellar in Trier including wine tasting and sampling of local specialities
- Guided visits: Strasbourg, Colmar, Baden-Baden, Heidelberg, Trier
- Admission to the following sights:
- Musée des Beaux Arts
- Heidelberg Castle
- Schwetzingen Palace
- Porterage at hotels in / out
- All taxes and charges
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