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Heart of Europe Bike & Barge: Metz to Cochem

The most enriching way to explore the bucolic Moselle Valley is at its river’s unhurried pace.

  • 12 Days
  • 22 Reviews Recommended by 22 of 22 travellers
  • Activity Level: Easy
  • Daily Mileage: 15 - 35 mi
  • Daily Biking: 2 - 4 hr
  • Small Groups: 24
  • Biking
  • Easy
  • Plane

Why You'll Love This Tour

Overview

Heart of Europe Bike & Barge: Metz to Cochem

So we take our time cruising its waters on our private barge. We’ll unpack our bags, then cruise and cycle for seven glorious days past terraced vineyards, emerald hillsides, and charming timber-framed villages. Our journey flows into Germany, France, and Luxembourg … past historic outposts of the Roman Empire … to serene riverside picnic spots … through a collapsed volcano … and into the lives of locals who’ve invited us into their homes. And of course, there’ll be lots of the valley’s fine wines to sample.

Cultural Highlights

  • Enjoy generous sightseeing, including walking tours of Luxembourg City, Metz, Trier, Cochem and Koblenz
  • Unpack just once on a 7-night cruise through a fairytale landscape of castles and vineyards
  • Sip local wines during a wine tasting in a fourth-generation, family-operated winery
  • Share hearty German fare with a local family in their home
  • Cycle along easy, quiet bike paths enjoying scenic river views
  • Pedal through a fascinating region of collapsed volcanoes and discover its history at a local museum

What to Expect

This tour offers easy terrain through the trip. Our VBT support shuttle is available every day at designated waypoints for those who need assistance.

What’s Included:

Bicycle Tour Only – without Air

  • 7 nights aboard a private deluxe canal barge
  • 16 meals – 7 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners

Air Package Plus

  • Roundtrip international airfare
  • Transfers
  • 7 nights aboard a private deluxe canal barge, 2 nights in a Luxembourg City hotel, 1 night in a Koblenz hotel
  • 19 meals – 10 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners
  • Guided walking tours of Koblenz and Luxembourg City
  • Entrance into Cochem Castle
  • AND the option to add our Low-Cost Trip Extensions: Pre-trip: Munich – 3 nights for only $445 • Post-trip: Berlin – 3 nights for only $545

Both Vacation Options Include

  • 1 glass of wine with all dinners aboard the barge
  • FREE use of our custom VBT bicycle and helmet
  • Service of two bilingual VBT Trip Leaders
  • 6 days of cycling with FULL VAN SUPPORT during the cruise portion of your trip
  • Sightseeing and cultural activities
  • 5% Frequent Traveler Credit to use on your next VBT vacation
  • Special Good Buy Discount
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Please note: Web Special savings cannot be combined with any other offer. Standard Terms & Conditions apply when purchasing this trip. 2015 Prices include all airline surcharges and Government taxes and fees. Ask our Tour Consultants for details. Every effort has been made to produce this information accurately. We reserve the right to correct errors. Prices are based on preferences selected above, including meals and sightseeing as specified in What's Included. All prices are subject to change. Departure dates and prices shown may be updated several times daily, and apply to new bookings only.

Itinerary & Map
Or, Expand All Days
DAY 1: Depart the U.S. and fly overnight to Luxembourg

VBT Air Package guests: Depart from the U.S. for Luxembourg City, Luxembourg. The particulars of your arrival overseas are detailed with your flight itinerary and airline tickets.

DAY 2: Arrive in Luxembourg City and transfer to hotel

VBT Air Package guests: Upon arrival at the Luxembourg City airport, claim your luggage and clear customs. If your luggage is lost, fill out a PIR form before leaving the customs area—VBT representatives are not allowed into the customs area. (Please note: Also make certain your VBT luggage tags are affixed to your bag so your VBT representative can identify you.)

After exiting customs, enter the arrival hall and look for your VBT representative, who will be holding a VBT sign. You will transfer via taxi or minibus (approximately 20 minutes) to your hotel in Luxembourg City. If you arrive early, your hotel room may not be available until 2:00 pm. You may store your luggage with the front desk. The rest of the day is free for you to explore this wonderful city.

Dinner is on your own tonight at a city restaurant.

DAY 3: Explore Luxembourg City

After breakfast, continue your exploration of the city. Your local guide will meet you at 10:00 am in the hotel lobby for a two-hour walking orientation tour, during which you can get some inside tips.

Luxembourg City overlooks the Petrusse and Alzette valleys and sits high on a rocky outcropping. It offers a combination of cobblestone-arched narrow streets and small elegant palaces such as the Palais Grand-Ducal and the Chambre des Deputes. The beautiful Chemin de la Corniche is said to be Europe's most beautiful terrace, with a pleasant promenade that passes restored ancient homes. The Casemates du Bock, a defensive labyrinth excavated in 1745 in the rocks beneath the city, is partly open to visitors. Other remarkable places include the Place de la Constitution and the cozy Place du Marche, still used for weekly flower and vegetable markets.

Tonight, dine on your own. The city boasts more Michelin stars per square mile than any other and has a lively atmosphere in its many cafés, pubs and pizzerias.

DAY 4: Transfer to Metz / Embark barge / Warm-up ride

VBT No-Air Package guests: You are responsible for making your own way to Metz to meet our barge, the Sailing Home. Please arrive between 1:30 pm and 2:00 pm. Please note that you cannot arrive before this time as the barge is being prepared for you. If you are late, you must contact the barge as soon as possible to make alternate arrangements because the barge will sail shortly after this time.

The barge will be moored in the canal between the Pont du Canal and the locks of Metz, near the rue de Paris and the rue George Aimé. Contact telephone number is +49 151 57 81 33 06 or +31 620 245 095.

VBT Air Package and Pre-Trip Extension guests: Please be ready and waiting in the hotel lobby at 9:00 am for our transfer by coach (approximately 1 hour) to the city of Metz in France. There will be a short 15 minute stop at the Luxembourg American Cemetery en route. Upon arrival in Metz, meet your local city guide and take a pleasant walk into the city center via charming bridges and romantic corners. Pass the elegant 18th-century city theater and the Palais de la Prefecture in the Place de la Comedie. Soon we see the imposing Cathedral of St. Etienne, one of the most beautiful Gothic cathedrals of France, built around 1250. Admire the fine stained-glass windows, including a modern one by Marc Chagall.

We'll stroll through the city and the Saturday morning local market, shopping or sightseeing on the lively Place St. Louis and Place Saint-Jacques. Meet with your local city guide again after lunch on your own, and walk to our barge mooring point.

At 2:00 pm, we board the Sailing Home. After meeting the crew and your VBT Trip Leaders, settle in before participating in a bike safety session and a short warm-up ride. Later, return to the Sailing Home and gather for a welcome dinner on board as we get underway. Tonight, the barge moors in the quiet French village of Thionville.

DAY 5: Bike to Rodemack, France / Picnic lunch / Remich, Luxembourg

After breakfast on board, we cycle along the Moselle River on a quiet bike path. Then turn inland and cycle along a pleasant rolling route through small villages to Rodemack, known as Little Carcassonne Lorraine. This charming village offers marvels of construction, including fortifications erected over many centuries. Impressive ramparts and walls encircle the village, and there's a labyrinth of back streets and cobbled alleys to explore, as well as an impressive fortress.

After a picnic lunch, we'll have free time to wander through the village.

You may bike or cruise this afternoon. Dinner tonight is on the barge. Afterward, the captain speaks about navigation and our planned route. The barge moors in Remich, Luxembourg.

DAY 6: Cycle Remich / Nennig / Wasserbillig / Saarburg

We cycle from Remich to Nennig and its local museum, where you can admire Europe's largest Roman mosaic (remarkably, 90% of it is original and perfectly restored). Continue riding along the Moselle on an easy bike path. The river forms a natural border between Germany and Luxembourg. Our route, on the German side, has the best views of vineyards sloping down hillsides. This is the Route du Vin, or wine road, famous here for its outstanding Riesling and Cremant wines.

Stop for lunch on your own in Oberbillig, a pretty village. You may cruise or continue cycling from this point. If you cycle, then we pass by Konz, a small city at the confluence of the Moselle and Saar rivers, then continue into the Saarland along the more intimate Saar River. Wooded mountains, wide meadows, and farmsteads and villages alternate in harmony along the two rivers. Later this afternoon, we reach Saarburg, a medieval jewel at the foot of a castle that towers above the river. The town center boasts a roaring 65-foot-high waterfall. We spend the rest of the day exploring this lovely town, then dine tonight on your own in a romantic restaurant on the Leuk River. Savor the hearty food and viez, or apple wine, typical of this region. The barge moors in Saarburg.

DAY 7: Bike and cruise from Saarburg to Trier

This morning, we walk to the nearby former bell foundry and museum, Mabilon, which produced bells until 2002. From there, pedal along the Saar River back to our barge, where lunch awaits. In the afternoon, continue cycling along the Saar to Konz, where we rejoin the Moselle bike path and ride to Trier. (If you prefer, you may cruise from Saarburg to Trier.)

A slogan for Trier, a lively tourist and university town, claims that it is possible to see “2,000 years of history in 2,000 paces.” The Romans established their local capital here. In the Middle Ages, Frankish kings and the archbishops of Trier reigned. A local guide conducts a walking tour of the city center, where we learn about the Porta Nigra (“Black Gate”), a city landmark and the largest city gate of the ancient world. Then, visit the Amphitheater, the medieval Main Market and Church of Our Lady (where you can see the throne of Constantine the Great), the rococo Electoral Palace, the Imperial Baths and extensive subterranean service passages. Trier's monuments have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Tonight, the barge moors in Trier, where we can relax before dinner onboard.

DAY 8: Piesport / Trittenheim / Bernkastel-Kues

After breakfast this morning, we leave Trier and cycle toward Bernkastel-Kues, passing Piesport and Trittenheim along the way. Both of these wine-making villages lie on scenic hairpin turns on the Moselle. See a reconstructed Roman winepress in Piesport. We stop for lunch in Neumagen, where there are more signs of ancient Rome. From there, shuttle to Bernkastel-Kues, or continue biking among vineyards and orchards, watching for swans and other birds.

On arrival in Bernkastel-Kues, we meet the barge, then rest or explore before dinner on board. Bernkastel and Kues, united in 1905, were once two small cities divided by the Moselle. The pride of this small city is the market square, with its picturesque timber-framed houses and decorated fountains, some dating to the 17th century.

After dinner, we stroll to the fascinating cellar of Josef Zimmermann via an elegant district of fine Jugendstill villas, many of which display winegut, or winery signs. The simple, fourth-generation Zimmermann operation contains a century-old cellar, wine barrels and an inviting tasting hall, where we taste four different wines.

DAY 9: Daun / The “maars” / Bernkastel-Kues

This morning, we shuttle (approximately 45 minutes) through the Eifel Valley to the city of Daun. From there, take an exhilarating bike ride that starts out slightly uphill, then zooms downhill along a former railway track that is now a cycling path. The ride includes stretches through tunnels, over bridges and by small lakes formed from volcano craters, known as maars. We'll pedal past castles, vineyards and green forests before cycling through quiet villages.

On the way, we stop in Strohn for a visit to a small volcano museum. The region is scattered with “young” volcanoes about 12,000 years old. The typical maars here are actually volcano cones collapsed inside the earth. In Strohn, we stop to share a simple, home-cooked lunch with a local family.

Later, continue cycling to Bernkastel where we have the opportunity to try one of the local restaurants this evening.

DAY 10: Zell / Bullay / Cochem

Today, cruise out of Bernkastel to follow the Moselle downstream. After breakfast, we arrive in Traben-Trarbach, an architectural jewel of Jugendstil surrounded by woods and extensive vineyards. Traben-Trarbach was at one time the world's second-largest wine-trading center. At the turn of the 20th century, the city's wine merchants built a number of fine Art Nouveau buildings, many of which are carefully preserved and continue to operate as wineries. An entire range of Belle Époque splendor was attracted to Traben-Trarbach, making the city a favorite destination for lovers of the Baroque and Classical styles.

After exploring Traben-Trarbach, cycle along the river bike path to Zell Beautifully situated on the Moselle where the river meanders through the hills in many bends, Zell is one of the largest wine-producing communities on the river. One of the best wines made here, Zeller Schwartze Katz (Black Cat), is produced with grapes from 16 different locations. A sculpture on the market-square fountain shows a snarling cat on top of a wine barrel. Continue to Bullay, another big wine name. You can pause from our scenic ride at your leisure to enjoy a picnic lunch prepared by our barge chef. You'll find many picnic areas along the path. Arrive and moor in Cochem later this afternoon, then freshen up for a festive farewell dinner on board the barge.

DAY 11: Cochem / Koblenz / VBT No-Air Package ends

VBT No-Air Package guests: After breakfast your tour ends. It is important that you leave the barge no later than 9:00 am in order for the crew to prepare for their next guests.

VBT Air Package guests: After breakfast, say farewell to the crew and one VBT Trip Leader, then walk into Cochem with the other. This characteristic Moselle town has steep vineyards, wooded hills, medieval buildings and a picturesque center with beautiful timber-framed houses. Hike or shuttle to the Reichsburg castle with a local guide, where you'll enjoy a tour and spectacular views of the Moselle valley and its vineyards. The fairy-tale castle includes seven rooms of fine furniture and objects from different periods and styles.

After your visit, you may shop and eat lunch on your own before saying goodbye to your VBT Trip Leader. We'll shuttle to Koblenz and settle in to our centrally located hotel. At 4:00 pm our local guide will meet you in the hotel lobby for a 1.5-hour walking tour around the historic Old Town of Koblenz. It will be about a 15-minute walk before we begin the tour, so we recommend you leave the hotel with everything you'll need to have dinner on your own in the Old Town once our tour has ended.

DAY 12: Depart for U.S. or begin your optional extension in Berlin

VBT Air Package guests: After breakfast*, meet in the hotel lobby to transfer to the Frankfurt airport for your flight back to the U.S. Please be sure that you are waiting at the designated transfer time and location. Please confirm your transfer time with your Trip Leaders during the week.

Important: VBT transfer times and departure points are finalized in advance and cannot be modified for individual guests. If you extend your stay beyond the scheduled program dates, return transportation to the airport will be at your own expense.

*For guests with early-morning departures, breakfast at the hotel may not be available. Please check with the front desk to verify the times that breakfast is served.

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Accommodations

Hotel Le Royal

This luxury property, one of the Leading Hotels of the World, is centrally located in Luxembourg City, has a beautiful garden and is only a few steps from the Old Town and shops. All rooms are spacious, elegant and fully air conditioned. The hotel is part of Luxembourg's "Hot City," a citywide network of free wireless Internet.
Free WiFi Included

Hotel Laimer Hof

Hotel Laimer Hof, a New Renaissance Villa from the end of the 19th century, is located in a quiet residential area just a few minutes walk from the Nymphenburg Palace and gardens. It is owned and managed by Alexandra and Sebastian Rosch, who also live in the property, and has a very homey feel.
Free WiFi Included

Hotel Brenner

Located in the Koblenz city center, this family-run property welcomes you with warm hospitality. Rooms are comfortably sized, and most overlook a small, well-maintained garden where you may eat breakfast. Hotel Brenner is stylishly decorated with hand-painted flowers on the ceilings and walls, and antique furnishings.
Free WiFi Included

Barge Iris

A luxurious and spacious two-deck, 24-passenger barge with a homelike atmosphere, the Iris was put into service in April 2005. Its 12 comfortable cabins have private bathrooms with showers, and the barge has climate control throughout. Common areas include a dining area and lounge with a bar, and a sun deck at the bow. Smoking is permitted outside on the sun deck only. The barge moors each night. Drinks of all types are available for purchase at the bar on board the Iris. It is not customary for guests to bring their own wine and liquor onboard; your understanding is appreciated. Onboard meal menus are set, though the chef is happy to accommodate vegetarians and those on restricted diets for health reasons.

Art 'Otel Berlin Mitte

Art 'Otel Berlin Mitte is a boutique hotel, combining traditional building décor and modern design and architecture. You just might think this fine hotel—in the heart of Berlin’s Fischerinsel district on the Spree River—is an Art Gallery, with artworks from Georg Baselitz, one of Germany’s most famous contemporary artists. The outstanding hall is covered with a glass roof and joins the modern wing of the hotel with its 17th century wing. Behind the hotel, the Spree River flows quietly, far from traffic and hustle. Riverside, you’ll find cafés and restaurants. Art ’Otel’s boat, moored nearby, transforms into a restaurant for hotel guests in summertime.
Free WiFi Included
Photos

Moselle Bike & Barge Tour Traveler Photo Gallery

Reviews
  • this trip exceeded my expectations.

    Biking on the bike paths were in excellent condition and made you feel safe.The trip leaders were outstanding.The food was O.K. The rooms very comfortable. Peter the captian was very informative and friendly. We have recommended this trip to 4 people already. Thanks for a great trip Meri & Bill Shorter

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: September 09, 2014
    Posted by: wshorter
    From: Salt Lake City, UT, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • Great "easy and relaxing" trip

    This trip exposes you to some of the most beautiful areas of Europe. And doing so on a barge that travels on the Mosel River allows you to enjoy every moment of the experience...the biking is easy, and allows for numerous opportunities to either lengthen or shorten the daily rides. The ease of eating and cruising on the barge allows for a very relaxing and enjoyable experience.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: September 02, 2014
    Posted by: PSES
    From: Conn.
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 5 or more

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  • Easy Biking in a Spectacular Valley

    From the moment we arrived in Metz, France which is a vibrant city, until we left Koblenz, Germany, another fabulous city, our bike & barge was a terrific tour. We arrived at the barge to smiling faces and a much needed beer and those faces were still smiling when we departed the Iris. The room accommodations on the barge were small, but adequate. The chef prepared some amazingly good food throughout the trip. We had breakfast on board, some lunches and many dinners. The guides were helpful, attentive, fun, knowledgeable, and well versed on the history of the Moselle. Biking on the Moselle and occasionally inland was beautiful, easy, with many small towns along the routes to visit and spend time in. Unpacking once was a real treat. Going through locks on the barge was an experience. The crew of the barge were like family, helpful, polite, taking care of business, making sure all of us were safe and out of harms way. A very enjoyable trip, up to the high standards we have come to expect from V B T. We are planning next years trip, which will be our ninth with the company, and hopefully many more in the future. We have come to think of V B T as our active travel company. The other bikers on the trip were from all over, many had been with V B T before, fun to be and bike with. Thanks again to Ferry & Axel, our guides, who were special and have excellent people skills.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: July 22, 2014
    Posted by: Corvette01
    From: Greenbrae, CA, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 5 or more

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  • A perfect vacation for the active traveler who wants to see a country up close.

    Comprehensive arrangements from the moment we got off the plane. Personable guides were knowledgeable about cycling and the regions visited and fostered communications among the guests. Accommodations very comfortable - just unpack once for 7 nights - with superb food aboard the barge. We're already signed on for our third VBT Bike & Barge trip!

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: April 22, 2014
    Posted by: PenzanceMA
    From: Plymouth, MA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • Grape Harvest Time Tour

    We enjoyed an October trip down the Mosel river and the Berlin extension. PROS: The guides (Axel and Saskia) and the ship crew were great! Metz, Koblenz and Berlin local guides. Koblenz hotel and location of Berlin Hotel. Excellent on board dinners. Beer and wine tasting. Learning that good Riesling is not all sweet - look for the word Trocken. Barge room had radiator in bathroom that made washing quick dry clothing a breeze. CONS: On board breakfast got repetitive. VBT no longer uses bikes with adjustable stem height. No early coffee in Koblenz or on the barge. Poor WiFi on barge. Limited pre-trip assistance and no pre-trip contact possible with the guides. I asked for advice on Berlin entertainment where we might need to buy tickets in advance and was told "Try Trip Advisor". Overall, the Pros far outweighed the Cons and we recommend the trip (our third VBT) highly.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: November 26, 2013
    Posted by: Martin
    From: Sarasota, FL, USA
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • A great bike/barge tour for cyclist who want to enjoy the scenery as well as the ride.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this trip on the Sailing Home barge. This group of 24 cyclists was perfect, having a variety of abilites of riders who rode in small groups along the daily route. The terrain was quite flat with only a few hills, but were easily negotiated. Each morning one of our guides would thoroughly go over the map and directions for the days cycling so there was no confusion as to what turns to make. The directions were very specific, with distances to travel, turns, land marks, signage. The bike paths along the Mosel were wide, paved and well marked - lots of room for passing other cyclists. One guide rode along at the end of our group and the other one drove a van with bike trailer. The van would be at a specific place in the morning and afternoon with water and snacks. Also if anyone wished to stop riding they were able to load their bike and ride in the van. Each day there was a highlight - a volcano museum, bell foundry, winery, castle. The accommodations on the barge were small but comfortable. Each room having 2 twin beds, some closet and cupboard space, a safe and our private bathroom with shower. The chef prepared us the most wonderful meals which were presented so professionally. The crew of 4 were friendly, cheerful and accommodating. Our guides were knowledgeable about the area, friendly, helpful and a pleasure to with both on the bike trail and on board the ship. The only drawback that I would comment on is the fligts and connections that were planned for us. It would have been more convenient if we had direct flights back to Calgary. Making VBT aware of that ahead of time would likely have allowed them to get us on different flights. The pre and post tours are well worth the money. We had excellent guides for our walking tours in Munich and Berlin and learned so much. We could easily have spent more time especially in Berlin. I would definately go on another VBT tour.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: October 19, 2013
    Posted by: Karen1
    From: Calgary, AB, Canada
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 1

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  • VBT bike and barge is a great way to see Europe

    Our first VBT bike and barge was Brugge to Amsterdam. It was so good we wanted more. Metz to Cochem was just as good. It was all easy riding and the places we saw were a fantasy world. As well, there were many cultural activities with top notch local guides. We ended with the post-trip to Berlin, providing important historical perspectives along with fantastic cultural and artistic collections.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: October 02, 2013
    Posted by: John
    From: Pennsylvania, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 5 or more

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  • Educational and Healthy

    Lasting memories include how the Roman Empire was so extensively developed in Germany; how the medieval villages were preserved; the beauty of the Mosel Valley including the vineyards, the swans, and the poppies; how well schooled most of the local guides were; how "healthy" the combination of biking, touring, and indulging in excellent food and wine. Barbara and Ray PS: our photo of Sailing Home was taken in the evening from the bridge connecting Bernkastle and Kues.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: July 25, 2013
    Posted by: Bobbi
    From: Indianapolis, IN, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • Bike & Barge is the way to go!

    A terrific combination of comfortable riding with a few challenges, sight-seeing, history, great food and fine company. Knowledgeable, personable and supportive guides. Having a comfortable home base is a BIG plus.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: July 23, 2013
    Posted by: Penzance
    From: Plymouth, MA, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • Excellent adventure

    Well organized, tour leaders and barge crew were all very accommodating and exceptionally friendly, activities were well chosen, food was exquisite, snacks were available as needed during cycling. Support was there for all levels of riders and equipment was very good .

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: July 16, 2013
    Posted by: NJHoov
    From: Simi Valley, CA, USA
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 1

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  • Terrific itinerary, trip leaders and barge crew!

    This was such a wonderful trip, our third with VBT and just as great as the first two. We really enjoyed the barge part of the trip, especially since we had rain for a few days in the midst of the terrific itinerary. Since it was raining too much for my cycling comfort zone, I chose to cruise on the barge for a couple of days and then ride along in the van for part of a third. This was perfectly fine with the crew and leaders and I actually enjoyed a part of the scenery by “barging” that I would have missed otherwise. It was a difficult decision as to whether to partake of the scenery cycling or cruising…but a pleasant and rewarding result either way! I also had great difficulty with my knees (pre-existing condition) during the walking tours, but the trip leaders and crew went out of their way to accommodate my condition and made sure I didn’t miss out on the activities. Our trips leaders, Kristin and Axel, were top notch and the Sailing Home crew members were awesome. It was evident that they all cared about whether we were enjoying ourselves and they all made sure that our every moment was filled with a valuable learning experience or an enjoyable activity. Oh, and did I mention the terrific itinerary? We also like to add the pre and/or post trips when we travel with VBT because it is such a marvelous way to extend the travel excitement and exposure to a new and wonderful culture. We can’t compliment VBT enough for the great trips that we’ve participated in. VBT is always a first class operation…from the initial interaction with customer service reps to the local transportation and accommodations provided to the wonderful trip leaders to the superb itineraries. We would readily recommend (and have on many occasions!) this VBT Heart of Europe Bike & Bike as well as any other trip…you can’t go wrong with VBT!

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: October 31, 2012
    Posted by: HappyWithVBT
    From: Florida, USA
    Age: 45 to 54
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • Great way to see the Moselle Valley and German wine country.

    This was our third VBT trip and the first one that used a barge for accomodations and travel. We began with a pre-trip to Munich and the many historic sites in that city and region. We followed that with a brief stay in Luxemborg City at the best hotel we have stayed in on any VBT tour. We boarded the barge in Metz and began the actual biking part of the trip. The barge accomodations were small but comfortable, certainly as roomy as any cruise ship we have sailed. Meals on the barge were outstanding and prepared by an excellent cook Mika. The crew of the barge were very friendly and helpful in all ways. The biking was outstanding and was mostly confined to beautiful bike trails along the Moselle River and inland for short distances. Although we had two days of sun the rest of the tour took place in drizzle and a few serious rain events. This did not dampen the enthusiasm of the group we were with as everyone persevered in the wet regardless. The scenery in the Valley was quite beautiful with extensive reisling vinyards clinging to steep hillsides throughout our trip. Along the way we passed through many quaint small towns where we stopped for lunch and wine. The wine served at dinner each night came from the local wineries at the small towns at which we docked each day. We ended the trip in Koblenz. Many of our group traveled on to Berlin for the post trip but unfortunately we had to head back home. Overall the trip was outstanding and the logistics of the trip, as with all previous VBT tours, was excellent: Every tour and trip transfer was on time and the hotels and restaurants that VBT arranged were great. Two caveats for anyone planning to take this trip: 1) bring GOOD rain gear for riding and 2) be aware that there are numerous WALKING tours nearly everyday. If you have bad knees or joints some of the tour may be difficult. Nevertheless, the VBT trip leaders always tried to make things as comfortable as possible. As for the trip leaders: Axel and Kristin lead our trip and were just great. They were very knowledgeable about the history of the area and knew the routes inside and out. Both were extremely helpful and very friendly. VBT must make a priority of hiring good trip leaders because the ones on our previous trips were just as excellent too. Overall, this tour is one we would highly recommend.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: October 14, 2012
    Posted by: Mako88
    From: St Petersburg, FL, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • We had a marvelous time

    This was our second VBT trip and both were excellent. The tour guides (Kristin and Arnot) did everything they could to make our experience enjoyable and meaningful. As with our first VBT trip two years ago, the guides let us make the vacation be what we want it to be; by that I mean if we didn't want to ride a particular leg we didn't have to, and they made the van available to accomodate people's wishes. Yes I would whole-hearedly recommend this tour to my friends and acquaintances.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: October 05, 2012
    Posted by: Paulla52
    From: Seattle
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • This tour was fun and offered an intimate experience with the European countryside.

    This was the first tour that my husband and I had taken with VBT. We were very satisfied with the experience. The guides were superb - not only did they know interesting facts about the area but they were willing to step out of the 'guide' role and relate to us as people. We found them funny, supportive, caring and completely invested in making our trip the best it could be. If you have the opportunity to travel with Kristin and Aernoud as your trip leaders - don't pass it up! We also really loved the opportunity to ride through the countryside that lined the Moselle River valley. It was very pretty and we tended to be the last riders to the barge simply due to the fact that we stopped to take so many photos! It was a wonderful experience and we look forward to joining VBT on one of their other biking tours in the future.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: September 26, 2012
    Posted by: mroe2
    From: Arvada, CO
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 1

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  • Wonderful trip for novice riders.

    We invited friends who had never done an organized bike trip, to join us. It was perfect trip for them as well as for us. The flat paved bike paths along the Moselle river made for easy riding, & provided breath taking scenery to enjoy while riding. Also, having the barge as our "home base" (and not having to constantly pack/unpack) was an added benefit. Since the 4 of us are all "foodies", it was an added bonus to have Chef Marcus as our chef on board... his food was Wonderful! Bike trips are our favorite way to travel... this one was definitely one of the best!

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: September 04, 2012
    Posted by: Bikerhiker
    From: New York, NY, USA
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • A great way to be up close and personal with the people and the countryside.

    Every day brings a new experience. We loved the biking but in addition there were tours to vineyards, a bell factory, tours in cities and many extras. The guides were well prepared as tour guides, bike repairmen, and multi lingual historians.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: August 26, 2012
    Posted by: Johnjoeh
    From: Philadelphia, PA, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 1

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  • Munich & Luxembourg are wonderful

    We had a great time visiting Munich and Luxembourg right up until I had a medical emergency and had to leave the tour. As I was spending four days in the hospital in Luxembourg City our tour leaders went out of their way to check on me everyday, wishing me a speedy recovery. Then, over and above, Arnaud drove four of our friends to the hospital to visit and bring various snacks for us. That gesture was truly appreciated, and I knew our tour was in good hands. We have booked for next year to complete the tour, and are looking forward to it with great expectations.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: August 24, 2012
    Posted by: Rober65
    From: Macomb, MI, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 5 or more

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  • Made It To 50

    We celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary on the Sailing Home. The trip was perfect. The captain and leaders were secrectly(By my daughter-in-law) told of our trip and were received a surprise heart tart on the appointed day. We liked the trip so much we're doing the Holland barge trip this year.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: June 19, 2012
    Posted by: Spiket7000
    From: Washington MI 48095
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 5 or more

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  • This tour has many great opportunities!

    The tour group started out one day on their bikes, but decided to return to the barge because it was raining. My friend and I were riding ahead of the others and did not realize that they had returned to the barge. We continued to ride the entire day in the rain getting soaked from head to toe, and enjoying every single moment. We were contacted by one of the leaders, but we told her that we were having so much fun that we were going to complete the day's ride. Great leaders, great food, great opportunities, great trip. I am thinking about doing the trip again with my husband.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: June 19, 2012
    Posted by: Charity
    From: Dallas, TX
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 5 or more

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  • Unexpectedly delightful!

    Generally, I am the one who loves to travel to foreign lands and it is my wife is homesick for the USA after being abroad only a few days -- but not on this VBT trip! This time she was having such a great time that the days simply flew by and before we knew it we were getting ready to head back to North America! We were blessed with a vacation that was meticulously planned, where everything went off without a hitch. No detail was too small to attend to, yet there was flexibility and comfort built into each day's events. We never felt rushed or harried, and we had time to explore the charming riverside towns that we encountered. In addition to taking care of the many organizational details, one of the most impressive features offered by VBT is the "added value" of their cycling vacations. In addition to having wonderful guides (more about them later), there are events every day that enhance the visitor's experience of the trip, whether it be a private visit to the Maginot Line, a city tour of Trier, or a wine tasting -- these are invariably most enjoyable and enlightening. I must not forget to laud the terrific guides that VBT uses. These are some of the most agreeable and accomplished people that I have come to know. Their people skills are formidable, and they are invariably knowledgeable and helpful, as well as difficult to ruffle no matter the circumstances. I do not know what was the most outstanding feature of the Moselle trip, for there were so many wonderful features. The fact that my wife did not want to leave the barge at the end of our journey says it all...... Thank you for providing us with this fabulous opportunity.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: June 19, 2012
    Posted by: Terry
    From: Bethlehem, PA, USA
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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  • A great way to visit

    On a scale of 1-10 I would rate this trip a 12! It was a great way to visit the villages and experience the culture.

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: June 17, 2012
    Posted by: TomB
    From: Lexington, KY, USA
    Age: 55 to 64
    # Of Trips: 1

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  • Great value, spectacular experience

    enjoyed our trip through Germany and developed good friendships. Wonderful way to enjoy biking, learning another country, healthy alternative to touring

    Yes, I recommend this tour.

    Posted on: June 16, 2012
    Posted by: Beryl
    From: Denver, CO, USA
    Age: 65 or over
    # Of Trips: 2-4

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Enjoy Your Vacation Longer With LOw-Cost Trip Extensions

Pre-Trip Extension - Munich

3 nights for only $445

Post-Trip Extension - Berlin

3 nights for only $545

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