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Lake Geneva & Rhine Cruise

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Soak up the Swiss culture at one of Europe's premier holiday spots

11 days From £2,695 £2,595 per person
Operated by our sister company Great Rail Journeys
Booking Offer

Save up to £100 per person on 2021 departures when you book on or before 31/10/2020 -  if booking online discount will be applied post booking.

Terms & Conditions

2021 Tour code: AER21

About the tour

As one of Europe's premier holiday spots, Lake Geneva is awash with local boutiques and alfresco eateries, where you can soak up Swiss culture, as well as glittering waters perfect for a relaxing lake cruise. We also enjoy a trip to the wine-producing Lavaux region for a vineyard tour and tasting.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary:

Some departures run a reversed itinerary – View reversed Amsterdam - Basel itinerary (EAR21)

Itinerary: Amsterdam - Basel

You are viewing the reversed itinerary – switch back to itinerary (AER21)

Day 1 - London to Vevey

Meet your Tour Manager this morning and board the Eurostar to Paris, continuing by rail to Vevey via Geneva. Our hotel here is the 4-Star Astra Hotel, a welcoming family-run hotel located opposite the railway station and just a short walk from the glittering shores of Lake Geneva.

Includes
  • Dinner
Vevey
Day 2 - Wine tasting in Cully

Take the train to Cully, in the nearby Lavaux region, where terraced vineyards rise from the shores of Lake Geneva. We enjoy a tour of the vineyards from our seat aboard the charming Lavaux Express, a local tractor-pulled road train that winds through the vineyards and surrounding villages. Admire panoramic views of the lush vines against the contrasting turquoise waters of the lake, before we arrive back in Cully for a visit to a local winery. We listen to talk from the owner before a tasting of the excellent locally-produced wines, accompanied by some tasty nibbles. We take the train back to Vevey where you're free this evening; you could settle down outside a bistro for an al fresco meal and indulge in an iconic Swiss classic such as cheese fondue, raclette or crispy potato rosti.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Lavaux Region Vineyard
Day 3 - Lake Geneva

Enjoy a free day to discover the crescent-shaped shores of Lake Geneva. You could take the time to further explore the towns, villages and cities that dot the landscapes. The sophisticated city of Geneva lies to the south and charms visitors with a cosmopolitan blend of Swiss and French culture. Here, you could step back in time in the historic Old Town, take in the views along the lakeside promenade, or take a boat ride on the turquoise waters. On the opposite shore of the lake is Évian-les-Bains, an elegant French spa town nestled within a beautiful natural setting, surrounded by springs that produce the world-famous Évian mineral water. Should you choose to visit here, a treatment in one of the thermal spas that the town is celebrated for comes highly recommended.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Lake Geneva
Days 4-5 - Boarding your ship and Strasbourg

After a relaxed morning, we take the train to Visp before continuing to Basel. Here, a coach takes us to our 5-Star ship to begin our unforgettable Rhine cruise. We're treated to a welcome cocktail and a fantastic 5-course dinner this evening, with beers and local wines included, before retiring to our cabins for the night.

Sail into the charming French city of Strasbourg on Day 5. Strasbourg's position on the German-French border has seen it change hands between the two nations frequently throughout history. Because of this, Strasbourg represents the best of both cultures, with colourful half-timbered houses and cobbled streets.

You have two choices here. Your first option is a city tour of Strasbourg, uncovering its charm and history. Your second choice sees you travel into the famous Black Forest, passing through stunning fairytale panoramas.

Includes
  • Day 4 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 5 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Strasbourg
Days 6-7 - Heidelberg, Rudesheim & The Rhine Gorge

We arrive in Speyer this morning, where there's free time to explore. This town is home to one of the largest privately-owned collections of vehicles in the world, the Technik Museum Speyer. Featuring an entire jumbo jet, army vehicles, emergency vehicles, a submarine and much more, this museum is a treasure trove of vehicular delights and is well worth a visit.

Later in the afternoon, we have an excursion to the delightful university town of Heidelberg where we are treated to a guided tour. Heidelberg is famous for a magnificent ruined castle that stands guard over the riverbanks, proudly looking over the town below.

On Day 7 we sail into the classic German town of Rüdesheim am Rhein, known for its formidable wine production, especially of the dry Riesling variety. Perhaps walk along the river during your free time here this morning, before our ship departs for Koblenz.

This afternoon includes one of the highlights of the tour as we pass through the glorious Rhine Gorge, one of the most beautiful sections of the river and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Sheer banks rise up, towering over the river below, covered in deep forests and miles of green vineyards, lending an almost ethereal feel to the waterway.

Our lunch today sees us tuck into a wonderful themed buffet with a suckling pig as the striking centrepiece, and several smaller dishes from this part of the world. We sail this evening into the enchanting city of Koblenz; you may wish to visit one of the famous wine taverns here.

Includes
  • Day 6 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Day 7 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Heidelberg
Days 8-9 - The Lower Rhine and the Drachenfelsbahn

After an evening in Koblenz, we depart and discover the marvellous Lower Rhine, a stretch of river characterised by lush green meadows and postcard villages.

Our Cruise Director provides us with the history of this area, and highlights points of interest. In the afternoon, we dock in Koenigswinter, where we embark on a journey on the Drachensfelbahn railway. This rack railway rises into the mountains and high into the forests for wonderful views across the Rhine- Westphalia region of Germany.

On Day 9, we arrive into Cologne, we venture forth into this vibrant German city on a walking tour. We visit the resplendent cathedral, a centuries-year-old building which survived 14 aerial hits during bombing across the Second World War. We also wander through the many bustling squares, labyrinthine streets and see Romanesque town-houses. Tonight we enjoy a gala dinner with the captain.

Includes
  • Day 8 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Day 9 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Drachenfels Railway
Days 10-11 - Amsterdam and the Medemblik Steam Train

We arrive in Amsterdam this morning where we have a choice of two excursions, the first is a city tour of Amsterdam. One of the most popular of all the European cities, Amsterdam is as modern as it is historic, as young as it is old. From idyllic canals and large parks to contemporary art galleries and futuristic architecture, this is a city that boasts something for everyone. The second option is an excursion to Hoorn where we board the splendid Medemblik Steam Train and enjoy a nostalgic trip through enchanting Dutch scenery.

On Day 11, we disembark the ship and here your cruise concludes. Here, you are escorted to the railway station for your train to London, with your Tour Manager.

Includes
  • Day 10 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Day 11 - Breakfast
Amsterdam
Days 1-2 - Amsterdam and the Medemblik Steam Train

Today, meet your Tour Manager and the rest of your group at London St Pancras before travelling on the Eurostar service to Amsterdam, where you'll be escorted to the ship. This evening, we enjoy a welcome cocktail before dinner this evening.

On Day 2 we have a choice of two excursions, the first of which is a city tour of Amsterdam. One of the most popular of all the European cities, Amsterdam is as modern as it is historic, as young as it is old. From idyllic canals and large parks, to contemporary art galleries and futuristic architecture, this is a city that boasts something for everyone. The second option is an excursion to Hoorn where we board the splendid Medemblik Steam Train and enjoy a nostalgic trip through splendid Dutch scenery.

Includes
  • Day 1 - Dinner
  • Day 2 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Amsterdam
Days 3-4 - The Upper Rhine and the Drachenfelsbahn

This morning, we arrive into Cologne, we venture forth into this vibrant German city on a walking tour. We visit the resplendent cathedral, a centuries-year-old building which survived 14 aerial hits during bombing across the Second World War. We also wander through the many bustling squares, labyrinthine streets and see Romanesque town-houses.

On Day 4 we depart from Cologne this morning and discover the marvellous Upper Rhine, a stretch of river characterised by lush green meadows and postcard villages. Our Cruise Director provides us with the history of this area, and highlights points of interest. In the afternoon, we dock in Koenigswinter, where we embark on a journey on the Drachensfelbahn railway. This rack railway rises into the mountains and high into the forests for wonderful views across the Rhine- Westphalia region of Germany. In the evening, we indulge with a traditional gourmet dinner which features Spargelzeit, a kind of white asparagus which is famous in this area. (Please note, Spargelzeit depends on seasonal availability).

Includes
  • Day 3 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Day 4 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Drachenfels Railway
Days 5-6 - Heidelberg, Rudesheim & The Rhine Gorge

After free time to explore Koblenz this morning.

This afternoon includes one of the highlights of the tour as we pass through the glorious Rhine Gorge, one of the most beautiful sections of the river and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Sheer river banks rise up, towering over the river below, covered in deep forests and miles of green vineyards, lending an almost ethereal feel to the waterway. We enjoy a commentary from our knowledgeable Cruise Director during this passage.

Our lunch today sees us tuck into a wonderful themed buffet with a suckling pig as the striking centrepiece, and several smaller dishes from this part of the world making up the rest of the offerings. Weather permitting we'll enjoy our lunch on the sun deck as we take in the majesty of the glorious Rhine Gorge. 

This evening we sail to the classic German town of Rüdesheim am Rhein, known for its formidable wine production especially of the dry Riesling variety.

We arrive into Speyer on Day 6, where you have free time to explore. This town is home to one of the largest privately owned collections of vehicles in the world, the Technik Museum Speyer. Featuring an entire jumbo jet, army vehicles, emergency vehicles, a submarine and much more, this museum is a treasure trove of vehicular delights and is well worth a visit. Later in the afternoon, we have an excursion to the delightful academic town of Heidelberg where we are treated to a guided tour. Heidelberg is famous for a magnificent ruined castle, proudly stood high above the town below, gazing down onto the river and the attractive town houses.

Includes
  • Day 5 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Day 6 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Heidelberg
Days 7-8 - Strasbourg and Vevey

Our vessel sails into the charming German town of Kehl today. Sat across the Rhine from Kehl is the beautiful city of Strasbourg, whose position on the German-French border has seen it change hands between the two nations frequently throughout history. Because of this, Strasbourg represents the best of both cultures, with colourful half-timbered houses and cobbled streets.

You have two choices here. Your first option is a city tour of Strasbourg, uncovering its charm and history. Your second choice sees you travel into the famous Black Forest, passing through stunning fairytale panoramas.

Tonight is an opportunity to dress up in our finest as we enjoy a Gala dinner with the captain and crew.

On Day 8, our unforgettable Rhine cruise comes to an end, as we disembark in Basel after breakfast. From here, we transfer to the station for the train to Vevey, via Visp. Our hotel here is the 4-Star Astra Hotel, a welcoming family-run hotel located opposite the railway station and just a short walk from the glittering shores of Lake Geneva.

Includes
  • Day 7 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • Day 8 - Breakfast, Dinner
Strasbourg
Day 9 - Wine tasting in Cully

Take the train to Cully, in the nearby Lavaux region, where terraced vineyards rise from the shores of Lake Geneva. We enjoy a tour of the vineyards from our seat aboard the charming Lavaux Express, a local tractor-pulled road train that winds through the vineyards and surrounding villages. Admire panoramic views of the lush vines against the contrasting turquoise waters of the lake, before we arrive back in Cully for a visit to a local winery. We listen to talk from the owner before a tasting of the excellent locally-produced wines, accompanied by some tasty nibbles. We take the train back to Vevey where you're free this evening; you could settle down outside a bistro for an al fresco meal and indulge in an iconic Swiss classic such as cheese fondue, raclette or crispy potato rosti.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Lavaux Region Vineyard
Day 10 - Lake Geneva

Enjoy a free day to discover the crescent-shaped shores of Lake Geneva. You could take the time to further explore the towns, villages and cities that dot the landscapes. The sophisticated city of Geneva lies to the south and charms visitors with a cosmopolitan blend of Swiss and French culture. Here, you could step back in time in the historic Old Town, take in the views along the lakeside promenade, or take a boat ride on the turquoise waters. On the opposite shore of the lake is Évian-les-Bains, an elegant French spa town nestled within a beautiful natural setting, surrounded by the springs that produce the worldfamous Évian mineral water. Should you choose to visit here, a treatment in one of the thermal spas that the town is celebrated for comes highly recommended.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Lake Geneva
Day 11 - Vevey to London

Bid farewell to Vevey today as we take the train to Paris via Geneva. In the French capital, we join the Eurostar back to London St Pancras.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Eurostar

Additional information

Departure times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We will write to you around 10 weeks before your departure date with the precise meeting times for your tour group.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Trains

Drachenfelsbahn
Eurostar
Jungfrau Express

Ships

MS Amadeus Silver III
MS Amadeus Imperial
MS Amadeus Cara

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Lake Geneva & Rhine Cruise

Soak up the Swiss culture at one of Europe's premier holiday spots

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