History, Cuisine and Beauty: Tour Highlights from Rhine & Moselle River Cruising

Hello Fox Friends! I am Tricia Newlands, Group Vacations Director for Fox World Travel. I recently returned from an incredible Rhine and Moselle River Cruise with Avalon Waterways on the Imagery II. River cruising is an amazing way to see many areas of Europe without having to pack and unpack multiple times.

This trip was a snapshot of historical Europe – filled with beauty and somberness – with a variety of options for excursions and activities depending upon your interests.

 

Below are my favorite tours while river cruising with Avalon Waterways along with my recommendations when considering a river cruise.

 

Foodie Flair in Amsterdam

If you have a couple days to spend exploring Amsterdam, I highly recommend visiting the central train station, Anne Frank’s home/annex (where she hid for more than 2 years during WWII), the famous Red- Light District and the Rijksmusuem.

A scrumptious breakfast can be had at Madam Pancake. Quaint little restaurant located in the red-light district.  If time permits, I do recommend a canal tour as a great way to experience the unique landscape, houses, canal bridges and history.

We enjoyed a lovely tour outside of Amsterdam to Zaanse Schans to see historic windmills and charming Dutch houses. During this visit we also visited a centuries-old cheese farm and learned how they make the famous wooden Dutch shoes, (clogs!) along with a fascinating tour of the windmills and how these windmills do everything from sawing wood, refining flour, oil, and spices.

History in Cologne

We chose a walking tour of the Ancient Jewish Quarter. This city is home to the oldest Jewish community north of the Alps. We visited the Jewish quarter including their gothic Town Hall. We also viewed the area where their medieval synagogue once stood but was destroyed by the Nazis.

After the tour was finished, we chose to stay in the area and visit a Holocaust Museum, El De Haus which housed men, women, and children in the basement 1 and 2 levels below street level – a powerful and incredibly somber visit. A memorial site was created outside of the museum in 1979.

Beauty of Rudesheim

Another one of my favorite stops was in Rudesheim, Germany. We enjoyed an open-air cable car ride to the Niederwald Monument. We rode over a large and beautiful vineyard. This monument commemorated the Unification of Germany between 1871 and 1883. We spent the rest of the day wondering the windy local streets and visited two wineries.

 

Architecture of Cochem

A must see in the village of Cochem, Germany is the Reichsburg Castle. We were able to visit both the grounds and inside of the castle. Reischsburg Castle is very well preserved. It was originally built in the 11th century but was completely destroyed by the French in 1689. The present castle was rebuilt in the late 19th century.

 

Tricia’s River Cruising Recommendations

💡 I highly suggest going into your first city or town a few days early to explore on your own as well as allowing you to get acclimated to the time change.

💡 You can be as busy or not as you choose. River cruising is all about choices. If you and your travel companion have different interests, you can even take different excursions in the same port and meet up later to learn about each other’s experience.

💡Avalon has enhanced their tours to include “wellness” options including biking and hiking to a castle or a vineyard (just to name a few.) There are bicycle rentals for free- first come, first serve. We chose to bike on a path which followed along the Moselle River.  This ensured we would not get lost!  We enjoyed the scenery and treated ourselves to crepes and local wine along the way.

💡 Meet people! We had a lovely time exploring hidden gems of the cities and equally spent some time aboard the ship chatting with people from all over the world. Here are our lovely tablemates for our evening dinners onboard the cruise.

 

I am in love with the attention-to-detail and the tour options offered via Avalon Waterways. If you are interested in learning more about an upcoming cruise, we have hand selected our favorites in 2023! You can also reach out to our expert travel advisors for additional recommendations.

Cheers! Tricia


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