Our River Rhine cruise explores five countries from Switzerland to the Netherlands , including three nights in the historic Italian fashion capital of Milan and a visit to glamorous Lake Como.Highlights include: Milan – three nights at Hotel Principe di Savoia, a historic landmark in the heart of the city; Lake Como – a private boat ride on Lake Como and a visit to Bellagio. Basel or Zurich – your choice of Swiss city walking tours in either Old Town Basel, a cultural mecca, or fashionable lakeside Zurich. Riquewihr – a walking tour of this tiny Alsatian wine village where French and German cultures blend; featured on the list of "The Most Beautiful Villages in France." Heidelberg – Germany's original university town, including a guided visit to legendary Heidelberg Castle. Wiesbaden – discovering a city that's grown around one of Europe's oldest spa towns. Linz am Rhein – a picturesque town lined with colorful half-timbered houses. Dusseldorf – spend an afternoon exploring this riverside center of art and fashion. Amsterdam – lunch aboard a private canal boat cruise. Tauck Exclusive experiences include a special evening at Schloss Biebrich, a restored Baroque palace on the bank of the Rhine in Wiesbaden.
Tour begins: 6:30 PM. A transfer is included from Milano Malpensa or Milano Linate airports or Milano Centrale train station to Hotel Principe di Savoia, a splendid landmark building built in the 1920s, decorated in classic Italian and Art Deco style, centrally located on the Piazza della Repubblica. Join us this evening for a welcome aperitif and dinner, accompanied by live jazz / standards, at your hotel.
You're off for a day's tooling around Lake Como, one of Italy's most beautiful lakes, in the shadow of the snowcapped Alps – a mecca for the well-heeled on holiday since ancient Roman times. Drive to tiny Tremezzina, where you'll board a boat for bellissima Bellagio. Your Tauck Director leads an orientation walk in this resort village, known as "the Pearl of the Lake," and you'll have a bit of free time. Take in the lake views and explore the centuries-old buildings, stone lanes, and cobbled stairways lined with shops. A boat cruise shows you more of Lake Como, which the poet William Wordsworth described as "a treasure whom the earth keeps to herself." The forested shoreline is punctuated by small towns with ancient stone bell towers and opulent villas owned by jet-setters and celebrities. Disembark in the town of Cernobbio and depart to Milan for dinner at your leisure.
Immerse yourself in magnificent Milan on an orientation and walking tour that includes an outside visit to the incredible Gothic Cathedral of Milan, il Duomo, the third largest Catholic church in the world. It took 500 years to finish this forest of spires and pinnacles topped by the iconic statue of the golden madonnina. Steps from il Duomo, stroll through the city's premier gathering place, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, a.k.a. "the living room of Milan." This massive yet elegant shopping arcade, topped by an airy glass octagonal dome, was built as a symbol of Italian unity in the late 19th century and named after the first king of Italy. The afternoon is free. You might want to take in La Scala, one of the most famous opera houses in the world, where Maria Callas sang her heart out… Pinacoteca di Brera, a great art collection including works by Raphael, Bellini, Piero della Francesca, and Caravaggio… the fashion district between pedestrianized Via della Spiga, via Montenapoleone, via Manzoni, and Corso Venezia… or the mildly bohemian Navigli neighborhood of canal-side bars, restaurants, and shops. As you go, be sure to taste the traditional flavors of Milan – sipping a Campari bitter aperitif and sampling dishes like yellow risotto, cassoeula, and ossobuco. Tonight, you have reservations for a Tauck Exclusive – a private viewing of Milan's pièce de resistance, Leonardo da Vinci's mural, The Last Supper, which adorns the dining room at the Santa Maria delle Grazie convent and has a way of drawing the viewer in. You might just feel as if you could walk into the picture, sit down at the table, and strike up a conversation with the apostles (subject to availability; the day of visit may vary).
After breakfast, drive to Lugano, Switzerland, where you'll enjoy some free time to explore. Late afternoon, take the high-speed train to Basel. Have you ever ridden through a mountain? "Great things are done when men and mountain meet," wrote the poet William Blake, and he could have been talking about the Gotthard Base Tunnel, which you'll go through today, zipping through the base of the Alps. At 35 miles long, it's the longest railway tunnel in the world, a major feat of engineering that took 17 years to complete. Because you're heading north, you may enter the tunnel in one kind of weather and exit to find that the weather has completely changed. In Basel, embark your riverboat; attend a Discovery Briefing and enjoy cocktails in the lounge before dining onboard your ship.
Today you have two Swiss cities to decide between. One possibility is to drive to Zurich, a world capital of banking (not to mention chocolate), for a walking tour with a local guide. Visit Bahnhoffstrasse, the city's exclusive shopping boulevard, connecting lovely Lake Zurich with the main railway station. Head into Old Town to wander through Niederdorf, a pedestrian area of winding streets, lined with shops, artisan studios, and restaurants. You'll pass by two important places of worship, the Romanesque Protestant church Grossmünster and Fraumünster, once an abbey home for aristocratic ladies, graced with stained glass windows by Marc Chagall. Enjoy a traditional Swiss lunch in a historic Guild House. Your other possibility for the day is to go on a walking tour in Old Town Basel with a local guide before setting off on your own. There's much to discover: the city is known for its many contemporary buildings by noted international architects, and it has the highest density of museums in the country, including the world-class Basel Art Museum. You'll work up an appetite, so make time to try a favorite local treat – honey cake. Have dinner back onboard your riverboat. You set sail tonight.
Wake up docked in Breisach and head into the Alsatian wine country for a choice of excursions. On one, drive along the bucolic Alsatian wine route, through countryside where some of the world's best Rieslings are made, to Riquewihr for a walking tour of this medieval wine town. On the list of "The Most Beautiful Villages in France," Riquewihr is situated between the Vosges Mountains and the Plain of Alsace, right in the heart of vineyard country. After lunch, enjoy a tasting at one of the local wine cellars. Your other option is an all-day e-bike ride through the scenic Kaiserstuhl wine region. One of the sunniest (and hottest) areas of Germany, the grapes in this region produce delicious Pinot Noir, pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc. Enjoy a sampling of these regional wine variants during lunch and wine tasting at a local restaurant before returning to Strasbourg. Tonight, enjoy the Chef's Signature Dinner at the Compass Rose back aboard your riverboat.
Enjoy a day of cruising along the Rhine, through the Middle Rhine Valley. Your Tauck Director provides commentary as you glide past sloping vineyards and rocky bluffs, sharing the stories of the Lorelei Rock and the castles standing watch onshore. Dock this evening in Remagen and go ashore with your Tauck Director for an orientation tour.
Following a leisurely morning's cruise, arrive after brunch in Düsseldorf – one of Germany's wealthiest cities, known for its charming Altstadt (Old Town) on the riverfront, as well as for its avant-garde architecture. Walk off the riverboat into town for your choice of a "Taste of Düsseldorf" walking tour focused on the city's history, architecture and culinary traditions, along with some tasty local treats; a craft beer tour that visits a number of breweries to offer a sampling of the varieties of dark Altbier the region is known for; or a bicycling excursion along the city's Rhine River waterfront. During some free time following the excursion of your choice, you might want to visit Königsallee ("the Kö"), the city's super high-end shopping street; if you're a classic car buff, check out the Classic Remise Düsseldorf, displaying vintage automobiles in a historic roundhouse for locomotives; or take a walk along the lively promenade by the river. Back aboard the ship this evening, enjoy a reception, dinner, and a party hosted by the crew as your riverboat charts a course for the Netherlands.
Arrive late morning in Amsterdam and disembark to be introduced to the Dutch capital in the very best way – on a canal boat cruise. As you float through the city's 17th-century network of canals and enjoy a bite of lunch, you'll pass under bridges, check out the houseboats, and see the historic buildings lining the canals. After your canal boat cruise, enjoy an afternoon exploring the city as you wish – perhaps visiting your choice of the city's museums, or strolling through the "Nine Streets" in the heart of the canal district, popping into unique shops and galleries, sampling cheeses or trying out Amsterdam's famed coffee shops. Our shuttle service will take you back to the riverboat throughout the afternoon, but you can also walk back. During your final evening aboard ship tonight, join us for a farewell reception followed by dinner.
Tour ends: Amsterdam. Disembark by 9:00 AM. Fly home anytime; a transfer from your riverboat to Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport or Centraal Train Station is included. Allow a minimum of three hours for flight check-in at the airport. For additional nights in Amsterdam, ask at booking.
Our River Rhine cruise explores five countries from Switzerland to the Netherlands, including three nights in the historic Italian fashion capital of Milan and a visit to glamorous Lake Como.Highlights include: Milan – three nights at Hotel Principe di Savoia, a historic landmark in the heart of the city; Lake Como – a private boat ride on Lake Como and a visit to Bellagio. Basel or Zurich – your choice of Swiss city walking tours in either Old Town Basel, a cultural mecca, or fashionable lakeside Zurich. Riquewihr – a walking tour of this tiny Alsatian wine village where French and German cultures blend; featured on the list of "The Most Beautiful Villages in France." Heidelberg – Germany's original university town, including a guided visit to legendary Heidelberg Castle. Wiesbaden – discovering a city that's grown around one of Europe's oldest spa towns. Linz am Rhein – a picturesque town lined with colorful half-timbered houses. Dusseldorf – spend an afternoon exploring this riverside center of art and fashion. Amsterdam – lunch aboard a private canal boat cruise. Tauck Exclusive experiences include a special evening at Schloss Biebrich, a restored Baroque palace on the bank of the Rhine in Wiesbaden.
Traveling with Peace of Mind
Our commitment never wavers – to earn your trust by always doing the right thing. As we explore the world together again, this will be more important than ever as we adapt to living and traveling in the presence of COVID-19.
Tauck is 97-years young this year, and our ability to weather many storms over the decades is a result of our values and beliefs – as a family and as a family-owned and led company. In addition to the guiding light of these values, our extensive experience, local knowledge and global support network help to ensure your safety on every Tauck journey. Building upon our bedrock of award-winning guest care, we have worked tirelessly to prepare for your return following the COVID-19 hiatus in travel. With guidance from leading experts, including the CDC and WHO, together with our internal Global Response Team and, most importantly, with feedback from thousands of our guests, we have redefined how we will conduct our experiences as we resume travel.
Tauck is Prepared for the Unexpected
For decades, Tauck has operated in over 70 countries in all 7 continents. Over this time, our staff and network of supplier partners have always been there to support our guests and team on the road. Our guests travel with a comprehensive, built-in support system that starts with the care and local knowledge of our Tauck Directors and extends to our network of partners around the world, including hoteliers and transportation companies.
At the core of our ability to quickly and effectively respond to the unexpected is our Global Response Team - a group of over 50 employees across all departments who stand ready to spring into action around the world. This team has plenty of experience, from weather events, high and low water on rivers, earthquakes, volcanic ash, civil unrest and work stoppages. They have also dealt with past virus outbreaks including the SARS and Zika viruses.
The Tauck Travel Well Pledge
Before we operate tours and cruises, all Tauck employees, our supplier partners and our guests will take Tauck’s Travel Well Pledge.
As a company, we will follow our enhanced protocols with diligence and rigor; review them frequently as the landscape changes and always make common-sense decisions grounded in purpose and pride. We embrace these new and necessary measures to combat COVID-19 and will do our very best to provide the Tauck care we have been honored to deliver for 97 years.
OUR NEW HEALTH & SAFETY PROTOCOLS
Consistent with our commitment to the well-being of our guests, we are implementing enhanced health and safety protocols. These protocols may vary by geographic regions and will certainly evolve over time, as science and society respond to new realities:
Prior to interacting with guests, each member of Tauck’s field staff is trained in enhanced protocols and participates in a personal health screening.
Once on tour, our Tauck Directors and supporting staff are responsible for maintaining these protocols with a special focus on cleanliness and physical distancing. They will relay critical information regarding requirements, advise when protocols are mandatory – such as wearing a face covering in group settings – and help facilitate guest care through communication with appropriate parties should a guest become ill on tour. All Tauck staff will adhere to the same requirements.
When joining a Tauck journey, every guest is responsible for their own health and, in turn, the protection of their fellow travelers, the Tauck staff, our suppliers and the places we visit. Guests will pledge to follow the direction of the Tauck staff and adhere to health and safety protocols.
Guests are expected to wear face coverings in all group settings, to wash their hands frequently and to adhere to supplier and government regulations. While supplies of face coverings, gloves, and hand sanitizer will be available, guests are asked to bring such personal items for their own comfort.
Small is BIG
For many years, Tauck has emphasized and invested in more choices of activities, resulting in smaller groups for activities like sightseeing and events. This is consistent with our mantra that “Small is Big” – small groups and smaller ships with fewer guests.
We initially focused on these elements to improve the guest experience. Yet today they take on an additional dimension; small group experiences and more personal space are critical in providing the peace of mind our guests expect. Accordingly, we are offering even more small group experiences and limiting guest numbers across all of our journeys.
We have been working diligently with our partners to be prepared to welcome you back when the time is right.
Tauck has worked meticulously with our global supplier partners to plan for every itinerary following the hiatus in travel. All partners, whether they be a hotel, museum, small ship/riverboat, restaurant or other partner, have been thoughtful about how to provide a Tauck experience in this environment.
And while it's impossible to list all of the enhanced health and safety protocols for the hundreds of Tauck partners across the globe, we would like to share a representative sample of what you can expect:
Our hotel partners all have world-class health and safety protocols. However, these guidelines may vary depending on local situations and regulations. Here are some typical examples:
Ships and Riverboats
We have worked closely with our cruise partners to ensure the best possible health and safety protocols and to ensure the care and service you expect from Tauck:
Sightseeing and Local Activities
Many of our experiences are exclusive and/or private and that’s important in taking care of you. Whether it be a guided tour, a visit to an iconic museum or private home, a musical performance, or any other special Tauck activities, we are applying the same rigor to health and safety protocols:
Tauck has always been known for a la carte dining; having more freedom to decide when and with whom to dine now has more value than ever. Additionally, our partners whether they be hotels, ships, special venues or restaurants, are raising their already rigorous hygienic standards. Here are some examples:
Keeping on-tour transportation safe is a major focus of our team who has worked with hundreds of partners to ensure continuity in health and safety protocols:
Our Supplier Partners are ready for you
Tauck is proud to have worked closely with our partners around the world, many of them for decades, to deliver the quality, comfort and safety you expect. Whether it be hotels and resorts, riverboats and small ships, restaurants, event venues or transportation companies, their meticulous health and safety protocols reflect their leadership and well-earned respect in the travel industry. The following are some select health and safety protocols. We will update these on a regular basis.
In addition to our supplier partners, we have also been actively engaged with global travel organizations to standardize health and safety protocols throughout the travel industry. TourCare is one example:
TourCare are health and sanitation guidelines developed by the tour industry's major global associations: the United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA), The Canadian Association of Tour Operators (CATO) and the European Tourism Association (ETOA). Tauck, and our supplier partners, meet and exceed these guidelines that require members to adhere to the highest standards in the industry.
Tauck is absolutely top notch! They treated us like absolute Royalty on the ship. I would without a doubt highly recommend Tauck for your next vacation.
We love Tauck, they are so professional and handle all the "little" details.
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