CHRISTMAS MARKET CRUISE
The Rhine Castles & Swiss Alps Aboard the AmaMora
Dates: November 27 to December 4, 2023
Cruise from: Basel, Switzerland to Amsterdam, Netherlands
Post-cruise extension available (see below for details)
Countries visited: Netherlands, Germany, France, Switzerland
It's the most wonderful time of the year!
Discover fairytale castles and historic vineyards as part of this spectacular Rhine River cruise fantasy. Start by exploring the canal-laden city of Amsterdam, with its neat rows of buildings and rich history. Then it’s off to Germany, where you’ll discover not only the grand city of Cologne but charming villages like the winemaking hamlet of Rudesheim and the university town of Heidelberg. Enjoy cruising through the UNESCO-designated Rhine Gorge, where 40 castles are strung like pearls along the river banks. Cross the border into France’s Alsace region in enchanting Strasbourg and take in spectacular panoramas of the Swiss Alps. Encompassing the Netherlands, Germany, France and Switzerland, as well as iconic landmarks and majestic mountain landscapes, this distinctive itinerary is truly a dream come true.
Day 1 | Basel, Switzerland - Embarkation
Embark your ship in Basel for your Rhine Castles & Swiss Alps cruise. (D)
Day 2 | BASEL – LUCERNE, SWITZERLAND
Enjoy getting to know Basel, Switzerland’s third largest city. Long an important university, banking and trade center, Basel’s glorious past is still evident in its medieval town hall, richly decorated market square and exquisite 18th-century patrician homes. Tour the city by foot or on a guided bike tour that takes you through three countries: Switzerland, France and Germany. Alternatively, go on a full-day excursion to Lucerne, or opt for one of the morning excursions and visit Lucerne in the afternoon. With either Lucerne excursion, you’ll have the opportunity to see its Lion Monument – the figure of a dying lion carved into a hillside in memory of the Swiss Guards massacred during the French Revolution in 1792 – which Mark Twain described as “the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world.” You’ll also see Lucerne’s spectacular medieval walls and towers, dating back to the 13th century. (B,L,D)
Day 3 | STRASBOURG, FRANCE
Strasbourg offers flavors of both France and Germany because of its borderline location. Enjoy a panoramic tour past the stunning Parc de l’Orangerie, the European Parliament and the Place de la République before walking through its iconic “La Petite France” district, lifted straight from the pages of a fairytale. Wander through charming streets past the Cathédrale de Nôtre Dame with its famous astronomical clock. Alternatively, take a guided bike ride through the city and Parc de l’Orangerie. (B,L,D)
Day 4 | LUDWIGSHAFEN, GERMANY – RÜDESHEIM
Ludwigshafen is your gateway to a choice of four excursions. Visit Heidelberg, the perfectly preserved medieval city nestled in the Neckar River Valley along Germany’s Castle Road. Discover the iconic red sandstone Heidelberg Castle and Great Vat, an 18th-century, 49,000-gallon wine cask. For a more active adventure while in Heidelberg, join a guided hike up the Philosopher’s Path, aptly named during the Romantic Period, and enjoy panoramic views of the city. Alternatively, you can visit one of Germany’s oldest cities, Speyer, known for the largest Romanesque cathedral in Europe—a UNESCO World Heritage Site—and the medieval Old Gate, Altpörtel. Or pedal along the river Neckar to the picturesque medieval city center of Ladenburg and enjoy some free time to explore the shops. Later in the day, cruise to the charming village of Rüdesheim and let Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum charm you with its remarkable collection of self-playing musical instruments; or taste one of the town’s special delights, Rüdesheimer coffee, ceremoniously made with brandy, coffee and whipped cream. (B,L,D)
Day 5 | RÜDESHEIM
Join a wine tasting to discover the flavors of the town’s iconic vineyards and drink up the stunning views by soaring high above the vineyards with a gondola ride to the Niederwalddenkmal. For a more active adventure, hike through the town’s beautiful vineyards or join a guided bike tour along the scenic Rhine River. Later in the day, cruise through the captivating UNESCO-designated Rhine Gorge, the most stunningly beautiful stretch of the river before reaching Lahnstein, where you will enjoy a unique evening visit at Lahneck Castle. (B,L,D)
Day 6 | COLOGNE, GERMANY
Enjoy cruising to Cologne. Join a guided tour through the Old Town and explore the UNESCO-designated Cologne Cathedral, one of Germany’s most revered Gothic masterpieces. Continue to the Cologne Rathaus, Germany’s oldest town hall, the Overstolzenhaus, and the Festival Hall. For a different view, visit a local tavern to taste its famous Kölsch beer, only made in Cologne, and reibekuchen mit apfelmus, potato pancakes typically served with applesauce. Active adventurists will want to join a guided bike ride along the Rhine and through the historic Stadtgarten. (B,L,D)
Day 7 | AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS
There are 165 canals in Amsterdam, and you’ll get to enjoy some of them on your canal cruise. Alternatively, get a taste of local flavor, passing iconic canals, gabled houses, narrow bridges and house boats while tasting Dutch specialties at one of Amsterdam’s grand cafes. Please note: tour depends upon docking location and may be replaced with Jordaan District Walking Tour. (B,L,D)
Dau 8 | AMSTERDAM – DISEMBARKATION
Bid Farewell to Amsterdam and prepare for your homeward flight. (B)
7 nights luxury accommodation in an outside stateroom (as per chosen category)
Entertainment-On-Demand in all staterooms featuring free high-speed internet access, movies, a music library and English language TV stations
Mini-fridge, desk and sitting area
Bottled water replenished daily
Wellness Activities with a dedicated Wellness Host leading various exercise classes as well as discussions on healthy eating and relaxation techniques, both on board and on shore.
Personalized service from a highly trained Cruise Manager during both cruise and land programs
Internet and Wi-Fi access
Sun deck pool with swim-up bar and walking track
Fitness room, massage services and hair salon
Main Lounge with panoramic views and bar
Daily entertainment including cultural performances
All onboard dining in a variety of venues
Regionally inspired cuisine made with locally sourced ingredients
The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant
Welcome Cocktail, Welcome Dinner, La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Dinner, Captain's Cocktail and Gala Dinner
La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs exclusive dining experience
Unlimited fine wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
Unlimited sparkling wine and fresh juice with breakfast
Sip & Sail Cocktail Hour with complimentary wine, beer, spirits and soft drinks
Tapas, sandwiches, snacks and refreshments served daily in the Main Lounge
Immersive tours in every destination
Gentle, regular, active and late-riser tour options
Bike tours and hikes
Special Interest Tours
Personal headset for easy exploration
Airport transfers with the purchase of air from AmaWaterways
Port charges: $277 CAD per person
Airfare (ask us about flight options)
Additional hotel nights (available upon request)
Items of a purely personal nature (phone, laundry, etc.)
Tips and gratuities
Lake Como 3 night pre-cruise extension:/November 24 to 27:
Day 1: Arrive Lake Como, hotel check-in
Day 2: Lake Como- walking tour
Day 3: Lake Como excursion to the “Pearl of Lake Como,” Bellagio
DAY 4: Transfer to Basel with Bellinzona tour
Earn key rings for 4 countries on this trip.
Netherlands, Germany, France, Switzerland
Category D (fixed window): $3,678
Category BB (french and outside balcony): $5,525
Category BA french and outside balcony: $5,789
Category AB (french and outside balcony : $6,053
Category AA (french and outside balcony: $6,317
Category SS (suite): $8,032
A savings of $1200* per person has been deducted from the fare.
*After December 31, 2021, the savings offered will be $300 CAD.
A deposit of $500 CAD per person guarantees the rate.
Rates are in CAD $ and based on double occupancy.
Single occupancy rates are available upon request.
Port charges additional $277 CAD per person
Optional pre-cruise extension | 3 night Lake Como Package:
Dates: November 24 to 27
Rate: $1,900 CAD per person (based on double occupancy)
* MCDT can assist you with flight, pre and post hotels and tours and travel insurance options.
** The itinerary is tentative and is subject to change with notice.