The Best of Austria & Switzerland with Romantic Rhine

18 Day River Cruise Vienna to Amsterdam

Cruise XZC5

Overview

This amazing vacation offers the best of both worlds: a land tour of Austria and Switzerland—two of Europe's most scenic countries—and a river cruise on the legendary Rhine River with stops in France, Germany, and Holland!

If you're a fan of palaces and castles, you'll enjoy a visit to Vienna, Austria’s Schönbrunn Palace, once the home of the Habsburg family. Stand in awe as you hear the stories of this royal family's home. And in Switzerland, you'll enjoy a visit to romantic Chillon Castle, a well-preserved, medieval castle on the shores of Lake Geneva. If spectacular scenery is your interest, you'll be thrilled with a ride on the world-famous Glacier Express train, where you'll travel first-class with panoramic windows to admire the thundering waterfalls, impressive peaks, glacial ice fields, and tiny villages on your way to Zermatt, Switzerland. Other scenic highlights include a Danube cruise along the prettiest part of the river on your way to Salzburg; a private boat cruise on the fjord-lake in Lucerne; a scenic drive into the Swiss Engadine, considered the most beautiful mountain area in the world; and more. Some sightseeing highlights include The Sound of Music Parish Church in Mondsee, a walk through the Old Town in Innsbruck, and the Lion Monument and Chapel Bridge in Lucerne.

After this land tour of the historical sights, castles, palaces and spectacular scenery, you’ll embark your cruise ship in Basel, Switzerland, for an exciting river cruise along the Rhine River! In Breisach, Germany, find the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest, an area of unrivaled natural beauty, best known for Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and the cuckoo clock. In Strasbourg, France, be amazed by the red-sandstone gothic cathedral with ancient murals and the fascinating astronomical clock. Stroll through the lovely La Petite France district with its quaint shops, delightful bistros, and peaceful waterfront promenade. Visit the ruins of Heidelberg’s castle, towering magnificently over the city, and stop in Mainz for a guided walk and a visit to the captivating Gutenberg Museum. In the charming wine town of Rüdesheim, visit the unique Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum. Holland’s popular, modern capital of Amsterdam, offers world-famous museums and an abundance of restaurants amongst the classic architecture and charming canals. See the treasures of the city on a canal cruise along the elegant grachten lined with homes dating back to the city’s “Golden Age.” A perfect ending to this fabulous land and river cruise adventure!
This amazing vacation offers the best of both worlds: a land tour of Austria and Switzerland—two of Europe's most scenic countries—and a river cruise on the legendary Rhine River with stops in France, Germany, and Holland!

If you're a fan of palaces and castles, you'll enjoy a visit to Vienna, Austria’s Schönbrunn Palace, once the home of the Habsburg family. Stand in awe as you hear the stories of this royal family's home. And in Switzerland, you'll enjoy a visit to romantic Chillon Castle, a well-preserved, medieval castle on the shores of Lake Geneva. If spectacular scenery is your interest, you'll be thrilled with a ride on the world-famous Glacier Express train, where you'll travel first-class with panoramic windows to admire the thundering waterfalls, impressive peaks, glacial ice fields, and tiny villages on your way to Zermatt, Switzerland. Other scenic highlights include a Danube cruise along the prettiest part of the river on your way to Salzburg; a private boat cruise on the fjord-lake in Lucerne; a scenic drive into the Swiss Engadine, considered the most beautiful mountain area in the world; and more. Some sightseeing highlights include The Sound of Music Parish Church in Mondsee, a walk through the Old Town in Innsbruck, and the Lion Monument and Chapel Bridge in Lucerne.

After this land tour of the historical sights, castles, palaces and spectacular scenery, you’ll embark your cruise ship in Basel, Switzerland, for an exciting river cruise along the Rhine River! In Breisach, Germany, find the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest, an area of unrivaled natural beauty, best known for Black Forest ham, cherry cake, and the cuckoo clock. In Strasbourg, France, be amazed by the red-sandstone gothic cathedral with ancient murals and the fascinating astronomical clock. Stroll through the lovely La Petite France district with its quaint shops, delightful bistros, and peaceful waterfront promenade. Visit the ruins of Heidelberg’s castle, towering magnificently over the city, and stop in Mainz for a guided walk and a visit to the captivating Gutenberg Museum. In the charming wine town of Rüdesheim, visit the unique Siegfried’s Mechanical Musical Instrument Museum. Holland’s popular, modern capital of Amsterdam, offers world-famous museums and an abundance of restaurants amongst the classic architecture and charming canals. See the treasures of the city on a canal cruise along the elegant grachten lined with homes dating back to the city’s “Golden Age.” A perfect ending to this fabulous land and river cruise adventure!

Book your cruise with or without flights

Cruise prices are shown without flights included in case you wish to book them separately, or aren't ready to return home when you disembark! Or we can book your flights for you from most UK airports, with overseas transfers and ATOL protection included. The choice is yours!

Book your cruise with or without flights

Itinerary

Avalon has designed included activities with a choice of experiences. We invite you to select the tours, activities, and events that interest you most, so you can experience your cruise your way. There are three types of included shore excursion on every Europe cruise:

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Classic
<p>Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.</p>
Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Day 1 VIENNA, AUSTRIA

  • Meals included:
  • Dinner

Welcome dinner at your hotel.

Day 2 VIENNA

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Guided sightseeing features a visit to magnificent Schönbrunn Palace, the Ringstrasse, and Heldenplatz.

Day 3 VIENNA—MELK—SALZBURG

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Enjoy a Danube cruise and visit The Sound of Music Parish Church in Mondsee before arriving in Salzburg. Guided walking tour and dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 4 SALZBURG

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

An optional excursion is available to Berchtesgaden and Hitler’s Eagles Nest.

Day 5 SALZBURG—INNSBRUCK—ST. MORITZ, SWITZERLAND

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

In Innsbruck, walk through the Old Town to the Golden Roof. Drive through the Swiss Engadine to St. Moritz.

Day 6 ST. MORITZ—CHUR—TÄSCH—ZERMATT

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Board the first-class panoramic coach of the Glacier Express train and arrive in Zermatt at the foot of the Matterhorn.

Day 7 ZERMATT

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

An optional excursion is available to the Klein Matterhorn.

Day 8 ZERMATT—BERNE

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Visit Chillon Castle and arrive in Berne.

Day 9 BERNE—INTERLAKEN—LUCERNE

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

The guided walking tour of Berne features a panoramic view from the Rose Garden and the Bear Park. Drive across Brünig Pass to Lucerne.

Day 10 LUCERNE

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Your morning walking tour includes the Lion Monument and the Chapel Bridge. This evening, enjoy a private boat cruise followed by a farewell dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 11 LUCERNE—BASEL (EMBARKATION)

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Transfer from Lucerne to Basel. Your Suite Ship® is Ready for Boarding.
Enjoy dinner and explore the ship on your first night on board.

EVENING CRUISE TO BREISACH


Day 12 BREISACH, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO THE BLACK FOREST

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

History, Artistry, and the Beautiful Black Forest

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Join a full-day Guided Tour to the magical Black Forest to experience the Vogtsbauernohf open-air-museum, visit an authentic water mill, and see a traditional butter-making demonstration, OR:


DISCOVERY

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Visit to Badische Winzerkeller, the largest German wine producer in Europe. Discover Germany’s southernmost wine country in Baden—ideally situated between the hills of the Black Forest and the Rhine River. Learn about the vintners’ process in the vineyards here, and enjoy a wine tasting.

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to visit the charming village of Colmar in the morning, with its half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings. EVENING CRUISE TO STRASBOURG

Day 13 STRASBOURG, FRANCE

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Gothic Giants, Military Marvels, and Varietal Vintages

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Join a City Sightseeing Tour, including the city’s gothic, stained-glass cathedral with its celebrated ancient murals and astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France District.


You may also choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to the historic Maginot Line—an impressive installation of pre-WWII defensive fortifications designed to protect the eastern border of France, or visit Alsace’s wine country today.
Alternatively, take some free time in Strasbourg to visit a museum, or stroll across the city center.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO LUDWIGSHAFEN


Day 14 LUDWIGSHAFEN, GERMANY. EXCURSION TO HEIDELBERG

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Castle Walls and the World’s Biggest Barrel of Wine

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Enjoy a Guided Tour to Heidelberg Castle to see the ruins of the magnificent renaissance treasure towering above the city, and its famed Great Vat, the “World’s Largest Wine Barrel,” OR:


Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Join your Avalon Adventure Host for a Hike up Philosophers’ Way for an inspiring view of the city below.


Alternatively enjoy a brief cruise to Mainz this afternoon and join our included tour.

MAINZ

Turning the Pages of History

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Enjoy a Guided City Walk including a visit to the Gutenberg Museum to see the captivating history of printing.


Enjoy live entertainment on board your ship this evening.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN MAINZ


Day 15 RÜDESHEIM—RHINE GORGE

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Eat, Drink, and Be Merry in Wine Country

Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Take a Guided Tour of the incredible Mechanical Music Museum for a one-of-a-kind instrumental experience; based on your departure enjoy a local special treat, OR:


Active

Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.

Enjoy a hike with your Avalon Adventure Host through the picturesque vineyards of Rüdesheim


Relax on the Sky Deck for an afternoon cruise through the spectacular Rhine Gorge to Koblenz. Sail past the legendary rock of The Lorelei—where the siren of mythology sang songs to lure ill-fated sailors.

KOBLENZ

Travel Through 2000 Years Of Monumental History
Enjoy free time in Koblenz before a relaxing evening on board with dinner and live entertainment.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN KOBLENZ


Day 16 COLOGNE

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Prost! Celebrate in the Rhineland’s Capital City

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Take a Guided City Walk of Cologne—with its soaring twin-steepled gothic cathedral, OR:


Discovery

We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.

Choose a Guided Walking Tour of Cologne’s important Jewish heritage sites.


Don’t miss the chance to enjoy free time over a glass of Kölsch pale lager—locally brewed for over 100 years!

AFTERNOON/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO AMSTERDAM


Day 17 AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Canals of Colorful Amsterdam

Classic

Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.

Explore the iconic waterways of Amsterdam on a Guided Canal Cruise past stately homes of Amsterdam’s “Golden Age”.


During tulip season, you may take a Guided Optional Excursion to Keukenhof gardens—with more than seven million tulips, daffodils and hyacinths, as well as other bulbs, planted each year. Outside of tulip season, join a Guided Optional Excursion to Zaanse Schans to see historic windmills and charming Dutch houses. You may also choose an Optional Biking Tour to discover the countryside.
Take some free time to explore Amsterdam’s colorful streets and canal houses, galleries, and shops.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AMSTERDAM


Day 18 AMSTERDAM (DISEMBARKATION)

  • Meals included:
  • Breakfast

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Questions? Our travel specialists can help with any queries, quotes or special requirements.  Request a callback or email us.

Notes

  • In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.

Hotels

It may occasionally be necessary to use alternative, similar standard, hotels to those shown