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Rhine Bike & River Cruise: Basel to Amsterdam

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Unpack once, then explore four countries on a single, all-inclusive European river cruise, enhanced by scenic and easy cycling, guided tours, and more.

  • Duration: 11 Days|
  • Daily Mileage: 6 - 35|
  • Biking: 1 - 4 hr|
  • Group Size: 24
Activity Easy
Easy
E-Bikes Available
E-Bikes Available
Airplane
Air Package Available
People
Guided Group Tour

Starting From

Bike Vacation + Air Package

$5,695

Bike Vacation Only

$4,695

(per person, double occupancy)

Rhine Bike & River Cruise: Basel to Amsterdam

You’ll cruise through the heart of Europe, viewing terraced vineyards, quaint riverside towns, and lofty castles, then disembark to view them up close, by bike. Hear the echoes of history—and perhaps the call of the Lorelei—as you follow in the meandering Rhine. Delve into the wine culture of Alsace. Probe medieval cities on guided tours, and admire the view from aboard your comfortable ship. All-inclusive pricing ensures the best value you can find in a Rhine cycling/river cruise!

What to Expect

On Shore: This tour offers easy riverside terrain, with a few climbs to reach riverside towns. Riding is primarily on bike paths of both pavement and packed gravel, with some road riding through both urban and rural areas. Our VBT support shuttle is available every day at designated points for those who would like assistance. Onboard Ship: Our group of up to 30 VBT guests will be part of a larger group on board our 182-passenger river cruise ship. Every day will include your choice of exclusive VBT activities as well as opportunities to join other activities that are offered by the ship. VBT activities may overlap with activities offered by the ship. While in port our ship may be docked adjacent to other ships. This means we may walk through other ships while boarding or disembarking, and some views may be obstructed while in port.

  • Duration: 11 Days|
  • Daily Mileage: 6 - 35|
  • Biking: 1 - 4 hr|
  • Group Size: 24
Activity Easy Easy
Cycling
Bar Graph Beginner - Experienced
Cyclists
Bus Vehicle
Support

Tour Highlights

  • Admire magnificent scenery from two perspectives: by boat and by bicycle.
  • Enjoy the best of both worlds: an all-inclusive river ship cruise and a VBT bicycling vacation.
  • Touch the shores of four countries—Switzerland, France, Germany, and the Netherland—but unpack only once.
  • Delve into the wine culture of Alsace as you cycle France’s famous Route des Vins.
  • Learn the legend of the Lorelei as you cruise the majestic Rhine Gorge, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
  • Ride into history on a car-free bike path the traces the route of ancient Romans and knights.
  • Explore the historic cities of Strasbourg, Heidelberg, Koblenz, and Cologne with local guides.
  • Cruise the charming canals of Amsterdam.
  • Feast on Edam cheese and other local specialties during a picnic lunch.

Climate Information

Temperatures

Average High /
Low Temperature (°F):

Apr58º/42º

May67º/51º

Jun72º/57º

Jul77º/60º

Aug76º/59º

Sep69º/53º

Oct58º/46º

Average
Precipitation:

Apr1.5 in

May2.9 in

Jun2.6 in

Jul2.4 in

Aug2.0 in

Sep1.8 in

Oct1.5 in

What's Included

Bike Vacation + Air Package

Bike Vacation Only

Roundtrip international airfare Check
Transfers Check
1 night in a Zurich hotel and 1 night in a hotel in Den Haag Check
7 nights aboard a deluxe river ship Check Check
21 meals – 7 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 7 dinners Check Check

Tour Bikes

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Road Bicycle (Carbon frame)

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Step-Through Hybrid/Comfort Bicycle

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Step-Over Hybrid/Comfort Bicycle

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Electric-Assisted Bicycle (E-bike)

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Biking Packages Include:

Custom VBT Bike and Helmet

Two Local, Bilingual Trip Leaders

Vehicle Support

Luggage Transfers

Ride with GPS and Daily Route Notes

Welcome Reception

Facilitated Cultural Experiences

Your Choice of VBT Branded Gear for Your Adventure

Itinerary

Thu, May 7 to Sun, May 17 - 2020

Show Itinerary:

Depart home for Zurich, Switzerland. The particulars of your arrival overseas are detailed with your flight itinerary.

Upon arrival at the Zurich 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 in the customs area. Make certain your VBT luggage tags are affixed to your bag so your VBT representative can identify you as you enter the arrival hall. Your VBT representative will be holding a VBT sign and will help you transfer via taxi or van (approximately 20 minutes, depending on traffic) to your centrally located Zurich hotel. If your VBT representative is not immediately in sight, there is a “Meeting Point” at both Customs exits, inside the arrivals hall. Please wait there, as the VBT representative may be transferring with an earlier arrival. They should arrive within 30 minutes.

Your hotel room may not be available until after 2:00 p.m. If you arrive early, you may store your luggage with the reception desk. The rest of the day is free to relax or explore the city.

VBT provides you with City Information that includes information and recommendations on what to see and do during your stay in Zurich.

Hotel: Hotel Opera Zurich

At 11:15 a.m., meet your VBT representative in the hotel lobby to transfer to Basel, Switzerland (approximately 1.5 hours). Arrive at the dock in Basel at approximately 1:00 p.m. and board your Emerald Waterways ship. Your cabin may not be ready for you until 3:00 p.m. However, you are welcome to enjoy lunch on board, served between 12:30 and 3:30 p.m., relax in the ship’s common areas, stretch your legs, or explore the town.

At 2:30 p.m., meet your Trip Leaders and fellow travelers on board for introductions and a safety and bike-fitting session, followed by a warm-up ride on local bike paths, providing first glimpses of life along the Rhine. Later, enjoy dinner on board. The ship sails for Breisach this evening.

Please note regarding WiFi on board the ship: Due to the nature of the ship movements, Internet access is not always available. If stable Internet access is critical to you, VBT recommends that you purchase your own bundle before traveling overseas.

Please note regarding Ride with GPS: There is limited WiFi on board. If you wish to use Ride with GPS on your smartphone, VBT also recommends that you download your VBT Maps & Route Notes from a WiFi zone prior to arrival on the boat. During your vacation, you will be able to follow these route notes on your smartphone with turn-by-turn voice navigation as you ride. As always, VBT also provides our traditional printed maps and route notes during the tour.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Nuremberg Warm-Up Loop: Ride: 12 km (8 miles)

What to Expect: The ride from our ship is on local, paved bike paths in Basel. Get acquainted with your route notes, Ride with GPS, your bicycle, and the locals. Check your brakes and play with shifting your full range of gears.

Wake up in Breisach this morning and start your day with a relaxing breakfast on board. Then, disembark to start your ride, departing and returning directly from the ship docks. Today features the Kaiserstuhl-Radweg, a loop ride through the vineyard terraces of the sunniest corner of Germany. Riding on well-developed cycling paths and agricultural roads, you’ll pass through riverside forest, orchards, and vineyards. Stop at one of the half-timbered villages to sample the local wine and meet some of VBT local friends. The Kaiserstuhl sits between Germany’s Black Forest and the Vosges in France, and it may be possible to gain glimpses of both during your ride.

Rejoin the ship in Breisach for a late lunch on board. This afternoon there is time to discover this charming town and its medieval past. The Museum of City History, housed in an ornate Baroque building, makes a great first stop, as it traces the city’s history back to a few thousand years B.C.

There’ll be time to relax on board before the Captain’s Welcome Cocktail and Gala. Sail for Kehl tonight.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Breisach to Eichstetten with a Shuttle to Breisach: 32 km (20 miles)
Breisach to Breisach: 54 km (34 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s ride options are on the Kaiserstuhl Cycle Route, which is a combination of dedicated bike paths and quiet roads. There are no significant elevation gains today. The short option ends at the winery visit, with a shuttle back to Breisach to meet the ship. The longer option is a ship-to-ship ride.

Arrive in Kehl just before breakfast. After breakfast, cross the river and say “bonjour” to Strasbourg. Welcome to France! Join a guided walking tour of this city, including La Petit France, the city’s historic center.

In the late morning, join a short shuttle out of Strasbourg and into wine country. The most famous wine route in France, La Route des Vins is a series of roadways and bike paths connecting one charming village after another. As you ride these fertile valleys, you’ll stop to enjoy a picnic of local specialties prepared by your Trip Leaders. The early part of your ride is alongside the picturesque Canal de la Bruche. The canal’s towpath has been converted into a cycle path, which forms part of the 2,400-mile-long (3,862-km) EuroVelo 5 route. Of course, this is the place to taste wine, and you’ll have an opportunity to be tutored on the local Pinot Gris, Rieslings, and Gewürztraminers. Your ride finishes in charming Obernai, where you’ll have free time to enjoy the town’s cafés, wine houses, and shops. A short shuttle returns you to your ship, which is waiting across the river in Kehl.

Enjoy time to relax before dinner and evening activities on board. The ship sails for Mannheim just as your small group is sitting down to dinner.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Entzheim to Obernai with a Shuttle to ship: 31 km (19 miles)

What to Expect: Ride on bike paths, bike lanes, and country roads on your choice of routes though the charming flower-box wine villages south of Strasbourg this afternoon. The short option includes a shuttle from Obernai back to the ship. The long option includes a shuttle from your return point in Holtzheim back to the ship.

Your ship is moored in Mannheim, when you awake. After breakfast, join a 45-minute shuttle to Heidelberg. The town is well-known for its university and for its castle, perched on a hill overlooking the town and the Neckar River. Here, a local guide introduces you to the town’s highlights and to the castle from its courtyard. Alternately, you may join a hike on Heidelberg Hill, or ride from Mannheim to Heidelberg via Schloss Schwetzingen, recognized for its Turkish, French, and English gardens.

Your bike is waiting in Heidelberg. Grab a local snack from your Trip Leaders, and then it’s a comfortable and scenic ride back to the ship in Mannheim, partly paralleling the Neckar River. Enjoy a late lunch on board as your ship sets course for Rudesheim.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Mannheim to Heidelberg via Schloss Schwetzingen: 25km (16 miles)
Heidelberg to Mannheim: 25km (16 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s ride options are on a mix of bike paths and town roads featuring slow-moving traffic. There are no significant elevation gains today. The morning ride is elective and would replace the sightseeing in Heidelberg.

Your ship slips its mooring this morning, just as breakfast is being served. Destination: Koblenz! But, before you get to the point where the Rhine and Mosel rivers meet, you’re in for one of the Rhine’s highlights—the Rhine Gorge. You’ll want to be on deck to see this most dramatic section of the river, which passes the famed Lorelei. In this narrowest section of the river, expect to see castle after castle, interspersed with southern-facing vineyards.

Arrive in Koblenz in the late morning and join a guided walking tour of this ancient city. For a different view of the river, ride the cable car up to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress.

After lunch on board, shuttle 30 minutes with your fellow VBT guests to the town of Muden (Mosel), nestled along the Moselle River. Here, you’ll spin along the river and below the steep valley walls, back to Koblenz. This is the Mosel Cycle Route, and most of our riding is on a dedicated car-free bike path. Before arriving by bike back at the ship, pass the impressive Deutsches Eck (German Corner), rebuilt as recently as 1993 and marking the headland where the Mosel and Rhine join.

For those seeking a break from the saddle, join an optional excursion (at additional cost) to Cochem. The excursion includes transfers from Koblenz to Cochem and back, a walking tour of Cochem, and a guided visit to Reichsburg Castle. Booking details will be provided with your final documents.

Your ship remains in town until after midnight, allowing for an after-dinner stroll along the wide, tree-lined promenade.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Muden (Mosel) to Ship: 33 km (21 miles)

What to Expect: Today features a relaxing and easy ride on the Mosel Cycle Route, a car-free route, with some stretches on roadways on entering Koblenz.

Arrive in Cologne this morning, and spy passing glimpses of the city’s famous spires just as you’re sitting down to breakfast. Disembark for a guided walk through this 2,000-year-old city, well-known for its High Gothic architecture. This is the largest city on the Rhine, and Germany’s fourth-most-populous.

After your walk, mount your bike for an urban adventure, exploring the popular and the everyday sites of this appealing metropolis. Return to the ship in the early afternoon for lunch. It’s time to say goodbye to Cologne as the ship sets off on the final and longest leg of the trip, to Amsterdam. This is a good time to catch up on your reading and or your travel journal, enjoy a nap, or tour the ship’s galley. Join a cocktail reception and Gala Dinner this evening.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Cologne city loop: 20 km (13 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s ride features a combination of bike paths and town streets, parks, and the waterfront.

Welkom in Nederland! This morning, see Amsterdam as earlier residents would have, from its canals during a guided boat excursion.

Midday, set off on the city’s excellent bike path network, heading north to the small fishing village of Monnickendam. As you head out of the city, you’ll witness daily life as well as some of the Netherland’s iconic views, from the saddle. Your route is via Broek in Waterland, a particularly charming village that demands a photo stop. We’ve found an idyllic location to enjoy a picnic lunch, prepared by your Trip Leaders using local specialties. Take in a different perspective of this beautiful countryside during a leisurely return route to the ship.

Back on board, enjoy a full roster of entertainment and dining to celebrate your week on the Rhine with your fellow travelers.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Ship to Monnieckendam: 22km (14 miles)
Monnickendam to Ship: 21 km (13 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s routes offer flat, easy cycling on well-maintained bike paths. The short option involves a shuttle back to the ship from Monnikendam.

After breakfast, say goodbye to your ship crew and Trip Leaders, and join the group transfer by minibus at 9:00 a.m. to your hotel in Den Haag (approximately 60 minutes). After checking in, enjoy free time for independent exploration. Please note that your room may not be ready upon your arrival, in which case the hotel will store your luggage. Enjoy dinner on your own tonight in one of the city’s many fine restaurants. VBT provides you with City Information that includes recommendations about what to see and do in Den Haag.

Note: Should you wish to spend time seeing more of Amsterdam, your luggage may be sent to the hotel in Den Haag with the group transfer, and you will then be responsible to travel to Den Haag at your leisure by train.

Hotel: Carlton Ambassador Hotel
Meals: Breakfast

After breakfast*, transfer to Amsterdam Schiphol Airport (approximately 30 minutes) for your departing flight**. Please ensure that you are ready in the hotel reception area at the designated time.

*Please note: 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.

**VBT recommends that you check your transfer time in your “Transfer Reminder” or with the hotel’s reception desk the night before your flight. 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.

Meals: Breakfast

Sat, May 9 to Sat, May 16 - 2020

Show Itinerary:

You are responsible for making your own way to Basel, Switzerland, to meet your Emerald Waterways ship. Please arrive between 12:30 and 2:30 p.m. Please note that you cannot embark before 12:30 p.m., as the ship is being prepared for you. If you are late, you must contact the ship as soon as possible to make arrangements to meet it.

The ship is expected to be at the docks in Klybeck. But, as its exact location may change, please call the ship on your arrival in Basel for directions.

Cruise start date of: 14 June:
Emerald Destiny, tele. +49 (0)152 5671 3873, [email protected]

Cruise start date of: 8 August:
Emerald Dawn, tele. +49 (0)173 518 1436, [email protected]

Cruise start date of: 20 July:
Emerald Sky, tele. +49 (0)173 518 1933, [email protected]

Cruise start dates of: 9 May, 29 August, and 20 September:
Emerald Sun, tele. +49 (0)173 518 1432, [email protected]

Your cabin may not be ready for you until 3:00 p.m. However, you are welcome to enjoy lunch on board, served between 12:30 and 3:30 p.m., relax in the ship’s common areas, stretch your legs, or explore the town.

At 2:30 p.m., meet your Trip Leaders and fellow travelers on board for introductions and a safety and bike-fitting session, followed by a warm-up ride on local bike paths, providing first glimpses of life along the Rhine. Later, enjoy a welcome dinner on board. The ship sails for Breisach this evening.

Please note regarding WiFi on board the ship: Due to the nature of the ship movements, Internet access is not always available. If stable Internet access is critical to you, VBT recommends that you purchase your own bundle before traveling overseas.

Please note regarding Ride with GPS: There is limited WiFi on board. If you wish to use Ride with GPS on your smartphone, VBT also recommends that you download your VBT Maps & Route Notes from a WiFi zone prior to arrival on the boat. During your vacation, you will be able to follow these route notes on your smartphone with turn-by-turn voice navigation as you ride. As always, VBT also provides our traditional printed maps and route notes during the tour.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Nuremberg Warm-Up Loop: Ride: 12 km (8 miles)

What to Expect: The ride from our ship is on local, paved bike paths in Basel. Get acquainted with your route notes, Ride with GPS, your bicycle, and the locals. Check your brakes and play with shifting your full range of gears.

Wake up in Breisach this morning and start your day with a relaxing breakfast on board. Then, disembark to start your ride, departing and returning directly from the ship docks. Today features the Kaiserstuhl-Radweg, a loop ride through the vineyard terraces of the sunniest corner of Germany. Riding on well-developed cycling paths and agricultural roads, you’ll pass through riverside forest, orchards, and vineyards. Stop at one of the half-timbered villages to sample the local wine and meet some of VBT local friends. The Kaiserstuhl sits between Germany’s Black Forest and the Vosges in France, and it may be possible to gain glimpses of both during your ride.

Rejoin the ship in Breisach for a late lunch on board. This afternoon there is time to discover this charming town and its medieval past. The Museum of City History, housed in an ornate Baroque building, makes a great first stop, as it traces the city’s history back to a few thousand years B.C.

There’ll be time to relax on board before the Captain’s Welcome Cocktail and Gala. Sail for Kehl tonight.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Breisach to Eichstetten with a Shuttle to Breisach: 32 km (20 miles)
Breisach to Breisach: 54 km (34 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s ride options are on the Kaiserstuhl Cycle Route, which is a combination of dedicated bike paths and quiet roads. There are no significant elevation gains today. The short option ends at the winery visit, with a shuttle back to Breisach to meet the ship. The longer option is a ship-to-ship ride.

Arrive in Kehl just before breakfast. After breakfast, cross the river and say “bonjour” to Strasbourg. Welcome to France! Join a guided walking tour of this city, including La Petit France, the city’s historic center.

In the late morning, join a short shuttle out of Strasbourg and into wine country. The most famous wine route in France, La Route des Vins is a series of roadways and bike paths connecting one charming village after another. As you ride these fertile valleys, you’ll stop to enjoy a picnic of local specialties prepared by your Trip Leaders. The early part of your ride is alongside the picturesque Canal de la Bruche. The canal’s towpath has been converted into a cycle path, which forms part of the 2,400-mile-long (3,862-km) EuroVelo 5 route. Of course, this is the place to taste wine, and you’ll have an opportunity to be tutored on the local Pinot Gris, Rieslings, and Gewürztraminers. Your ride finishes in charming Obernai, where you’ll have free time to enjoy the town’s cafés, wine houses, and shops. A short shuttle returns you to your ship, which is waiting across the river in Kehl.

Enjoy time to relax before dinner and evening activities on board. The ship sails for Mannheim just as your small group is sitting down to dinner.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Entzheim to Obernai with a Shuttle to ship: 31 km (19 miles)

What to Expect: Ride on bike paths, bike lanes, and country roads on your choice of routes though the charming flower-box wine villages south of Strasbourg this afternoon. The short option includes a shuttle from Obernai back to the ship. The long option includes a shuttle from your return point in Holtzheim back to the ship.

Your ship is moored in Mannheim, when you awake. After breakfast, join a 45-minute shuttle to Heidelberg. The town is well-known for its university and for its castle, perched on a hill overlooking the town and the Neckar River. Here, a local guide introduces you to the town’s highlights and to the castle from its courtyard. Alternately, you may join a hike on Heidelberg Hill, or ride from Mannheim to Heidelberg via Schloss Schwetzingen, recognized for its Turkish, French, and English gardens.

Your bike is waiting in Heidelberg. Grab a local snack from your Trip Leaders, and then it’s a comfortable and scenic ride back to the ship in Mannheim, partly paralleling the Neckar River. Enjoy a late lunch on board as your ship sets course for Rudesheim.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Mannheim to Heidelberg via Schloss Schwetzingen: 25km (16 miles)
Heidelberg to Mannheim: 25km (16 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s ride options are on a mix of bike paths and town roads featuring slow-moving traffic. There are no significant elevation gains today. The morning ride is elective and would replace the sightseeing in Heidelberg.

Your ship slips its mooring this morning, just as breakfast is being served. Destination: Koblenz! But, before you get to the point where the Rhine and Mosel rivers meet, you’re in for one of the Rhine’s highlights—the Rhine Gorge. You’ll want to be on deck to see this most dramatic section of the river, which passes the famed Lorelei. In this narrowest section of the river, expect to see castle after castle, interspersed with southern-facing vineyards.

Arrive in Koblenz in the late morning and join a guided walking tour of this ancient city. For a different view of the river, ride the cable car up to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress.

After lunch on board, shuttle 30 minutes with your fellow VBT guests to the town of Muden (Mosel), nestled along the Moselle River. Here, you’ll spin along the river and below the steep valley walls, back to Koblenz. This is the Mosel Cycle Route, and most of our riding is on a dedicated car-free bike path. Before arriving by bike back at the ship, pass the impressive Deutsches Eck (German Corner), rebuilt as recently as 1993 and marking the headland where the Mosel and Rhine join.

For those seeking a break from the saddle, join an optional excursion (at additional cost) to Cochem. The excursion includes transfers from Koblenz to Cochem and back, a walking tour of Cochem, and a guided visit to Reichsburg Castle. Booking details will be provided with your final documents.

Your ship remains in town until after midnight, allowing for an after-dinner stroll along the wide, tree-lined promenade.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Muden (Mosel) to Ship: 33 km (21 miles)

What to Expect: Today features a relaxing and easy ride on the Mosel Cycle Route, a car-free route, with some stretches on roadways on entering Koblenz.

Arrive in Cologne this morning, and spy passing glimpses of the city’s famous spires just as you’re sitting down to breakfast. Disembark for a guided walk through this 2,000-year-old city, well-known for its High Gothic architecture. This is the largest city on the Rhine, and Germany’s fourth-most-populous.

After your walk, mount your bike for an urban adventure, exploring the popular and the everyday sites of this appealing metropolis. Return to the ship in the early afternoon for lunch. It’s time to say goodbye to Cologne as the ship sets off on the final and longest leg of the trip, to Amsterdam. This is a good time to catch up on your reading and or your travel journal, enjoy a nap, or tour the ship’s galley. Join a cocktail reception and Gala Dinner this evening.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Cologne city loop: 20 km (13 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s ride features a combination of bike paths and town streets, parks, and the waterfront.

Welkom in Nederland! This morning, see Amsterdam as earlier residents would have, from its canals during a guided boat excursion.

Midday, set off on the city’s excellent bike path network, heading north to the small fishing village of Monnickendam. As you head out of the city, you’ll witness daily life as well as some of the Netherland’s iconic views, from the saddle. Your route is via Broek in Waterland, a particularly charming village that demands a photo stop. We’ve found an idyllic location to enjoy a picnic lunch, prepared by your Trip Leaders using local specialties. Take in a different perspective of this beautiful countryside during a leisurely return route to the ship.

Back on board, enjoy a full roster of entertainment and dining to celebrate your week on the Rhine with your fellow travelers.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today’s Ride Choice:
Ship to Monnieckendam: 22km (14 miles)
Monnickendam to Ship: 21 km (13 miles)

What to Expect: Today’s routes offer flat, easy cycling on well-maintained bike paths. The short option involves a shuttle back to the ship from Monnikendam.

After breakfast, disembark your ship at 9:00 am to conclude your Rhine River adventure.
Say goodbye to your ship crew and Trip Leaders as your tour ends. It is important that you disembark ship no later than 9:00 a.m. Taxis will be available for transfers to the train station or airport.

Hotel: Carlton Ambassador Hotel
Meals: Breakfast

Enjoy Your Vacation Longer With Low-Cost Trip Extensions

Airplane

Air Package Only

Pre-Trip Extension - Zurich

2 Nights From $445 per person, double occupancy

  • 2 nights at the Hotel Opera in Zurich
  • Daily breakfast
  • Airport and ship transfers
  • City Information

Depart home for Switzerland. The particulars of your arrival overseas are detailed with your flight itinerary.

Upon arrival at the Zurich 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 in the customs area. Make certain your VBT luggage tags are affixed to your bag so your VBT representative can identify you as you enter the arrival hall. Your VBT representative will be holding a VBT sign and will help you transfer via taxi or van (approximately 20 minutes, depending on traffic) to your centrally located Zurich hotel. If your VBT representative is not immediately in sight, there is a “Meeting Point” at both Customs exits, inside the arrivals hall. Please wait there, as the VBT representative may be transferring with an earlier arrival. They should arrive within 30 minutes.

Your hotel room may not be available until after 2:00 p.m. If you arrive early, you may store your luggage with the reception desk. The rest of the day is free to relax or begin your exploration of the city.

VBT provides you with City Information that includes information and recommendations on what to see and do during your stay in Zurich.

Hotel: Hotel Opera Zurich

Zurich is one of Europe’s most underappreciated cities. It sits amid one of the planet’s most beautiful settings, astride the Limmat River and facing the crystal-clear Lake Zurich and the distant snowy peaks beyond. Steep, cobbled alleys crisscross the Old Town, inviting endless exploration. Cozy cafes lure coffee lovers and people watchers. And a bench-lined promenade on the lake invites contemplation. Zurich enjoys a reputation as an extremely clean and litter-free city. So it should come as no surprise that it has been named several times as among the cities with the best quality of life in the world. Enjoy the day to explore this remarkable city.

Hotel: Hotel Opera Zurich
Meals: Breakfast

Another day to enjoy Zurich or use the excellent Swiss rail system to visit nearby destinations such as Lucerne and its neighboring Mount Pilatus.

Hotel: Hotel Opera Zurich
Meals: Breakfast

At 11:15 a.m., meet your VBT representative in the hotel lobby to transfer to Basel, Switzerland (approximately 1.5 hours). Arrive at the dock in Basel at approximately 1:00 p.m. and board your Emerald Waterways ship.

Your cabin may not be ready for you until 3:00 p.m. However, you are welcome to enjoy lunch on board, served between 12:30 and 3:30 p.m., relax in the ship’s common areas, stretch your legs, or explore town.

At 2:30 p.m., meet your Trip Leaders and fellow travelers on board for introductions and a safety and bike-fitting session, followed by a warm-up ride on local bike paths, providing first glimpses of life along the Rhine. Later, enjoy dinner on board. The ship sails for Breisach this evening.

Hotel: Emerald Sky/Emerald Destiny/Emerald Dawn/Emerald Sun
Meals: Breakfast

Airplane

Air Package Only

Post-Trip Extension - The Hague

2 Nights From $245 per person, double occupancy

  • 2 nights at the Carlton Ambassador Hotel
  • Daily breakfast
  • Airport transfers
  • City Information

Today, explore one of the most extraordinary cities in Holland—not just because it is the seat of the national government, but also because of its fame as the “International City of Peace and Justice” and second home of the United Nations. Beautifully set on the North Sea, Den Haag (The Hague) boasts many monuments and historic districts. It is known as the “Royal City by the Sea” because of the many members of the Dutch royal family who reside in its chic neighborhoods.

The Plein and Grote Markt squares abound with great restaurants and coffee houses and exude a lively and welcoming air. Den Haag’s shopping is as varied as the city itself, ranging from luxury department stores offering top international brands to cozy streets lined with boutiques and specialty shops. The city also boasts internationally renowned art and culture. Visit the Mauritshuis, home of the best Dutch paintings from the Golden Age; Panorama Mesdag, a cyclorama painting more than 45 feet (13.7 meters) high and 390 feet (118.8 meters) in circumference; and the Peace Palace, home to a number of international judicial institutions. If you wish, board a train to one of the nearby Dutch cities.

Hotel: Carlton Ambassador Hotel
Meals: Breakfast

Take another day to enjoy this charming city, or to venture off by rail to see Amsterdam or other points nearby.

Hotel: Carlton Ambassador Hotel
Meals: Breakfast

After breakfast*, transfer to Amsterdam Schiphol airport (approximately 30 minutes) for your departing flight**. Please ensure you are waiting in the hotel reception area at the designated transfer time.

*Please note: 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.

**VBT recommends that you check your transfer time in your “Transfer Reminder” or with the hotel’s reception desk the night before your flight. 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.

Meals: Breakfast

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Dates & Prices

Bike Vacation + Air Package

11 days, includes round-trip international airfare, airport shuttle, and additional hotel nights with included breakfast.

Single Supplement: $2,395

Departing From New York, NY (JFK)

Bike Vacation Only

8 Days. Includes bike vacation only.

Single Supplement: $2,245

Thu, May 7 - Sun, May 17

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$5,695

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Fri, Jun 12 - Mon, Jun 22

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Thu, Aug 6 - Sun, Aug 16

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For more information, call: 800-245-3868

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