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13 Day Rhine River Cruise with Italian Lakes & Swiss Alps Basel to Amsterdam, Monarch Empress

13 Day Rhine River Cruise with Italian Lakes & Swiss Alps Basel to Amsterdam, Monarch Empress


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Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

Overview

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Itinerary

Tour Itinerary

DAY 1, Sunday - Depart for Italy
Depart for Italy

DAY 2, Monday - Arrive in Milan, Lake Como
Welcome to Italy! Arrive in Milan and transfer to your hotel on the western shore of spectacular Lake Como, one of the world's most romantic destinations. The remainder of the day is at leisure to enjoy the beautiful new surroundings. Tonight, a Welcome Drink and orientation meeting with your tour manager at the hotel at approximately 6 PM, followed by a Welcome Dinner with your fellow travelers. We recommend that you select flights which arrive in your destination no later than 4 PM on Day 2 or earlier, if possible
Overnight: Lake Como
Meals: Dinner

DAY 3, Tuesday - Village of Bellagio
Begin the day in this paradise with a scenic morning cruise on Lake Como to the exquisite village of Bellagio, named "The Pearl" of Lake Como. Nestled amid cypress groves, its earthy colored buildings climb up from the lakeside promenade. Wander along the narrow streets and alleyways, lined with craft shops, boutiques and cafés; or visit some of the gorgeous gardens with manicured lawns and fountains at Villa Melzi or Villa Serbelloni. Upon return, time to experience the delights of this lakeside town with its spectacular mountain views, wonderful restaurants, and boutiques
Overnight: Lake Como
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Wednesday - Lake Lugano, St. Gotthard Tunnel, Lucerne's Old City
Travel this morning to Lugano in southern Switzerland's Italian-speaking Ticino region on the northern shore of glacial Lake Lugano. Its Swiss-Mediterranean mix of cultures is similar to Italy's northern Lombardy region and reflected in its architecture. The palm trees give way to Alpine peaks and glaciers as you continue heading north traversing through the St. Gotthard Tunnel built under the Swiss Alps. On your journey to Lucerne, pass magnificent Alpine scenery, roaring waterfalls and running rivers. In the stunning lakeside Swiss city of Lucerne, get acquainted with the city on your walking tour to the sentimental Lion Monument, the 14th Century Chapel Bridge and the cobbled streets of the well-preserved medieval Altstadt (Old Town)
Overnight: Lucerne
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 5, Thursday – Full Day in Lucerne
The day is yours to independently discover Lucerne, in the heart of central Switzerland. Wander through the lively streets, over bridges and along the picturesque lakeshore. Shop to your heart's content for chocolates, watches, the famous Swiss and German cuckoo clocks, or sip coffee at an outdoor café and just "people-watch". Perhaps, join the exciting optional tour to the summit of Mt. Pilatus. Ascend the world's steepest cogwheel railway that winds up through lush meadows and sparkling mountain streams to nearly 7,000 feet. After time to admire the splendid panoramic views, descend by aerial cableway
Optional: Mount Pilatus Tour (AM)
Overnight: Lucerne
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 6, Friday – Basel City Tour and Cruise Embarkation
This morning depart Lucerne and travel Basel. Upon arrival, enjoy a city tour of Basel, the geographical point where the Swiss, German and French borders meet. Explore the Kleinbasel district along the Rhine River, the old buildings and narrow alleyways of Grossbasel, and "Tinguely Fountain," a unique fountain designed by the Swiss artist Jean Tinguely. This afternoon arrive at port. After arrival formalities, time to relax on board. This evening, meet your Cruise Director and enjoy a gala welcome dinner as it sets the mood for your delightful river cruise
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 7, Saturday - Breisach Walking Tour
Arrive this morning in the small town of Breisach that dates back over 4,000 years. On your walking tour along the cobbled streets lined with pastel-painted houses, it's hard to believe this town was mostly destroyed in WWII and then totally restored to its original beauty. View the towering Romanesque and Gothic St. Stephansmunster Cathedral, a highlight of the city. Spend free time in town, or, join the optional tour to Colmar in France, known as Alsace's most beautiful city with its dramatic steep pitched roofs, pastel stucco and distinctive French shutters accented by window boxes filled with colorful geraniums. At the end of your tour, stop by a local wine maker to sample a few of the region's varietals
Optional: Colmar City Tour (PM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8, Sunday - Strasbourg City Tour
A lovely day awaits you in Strasbourg, the capital of Alsace, situated on the border of France and Germany, blending the cultures of both countries. Discover Strasbourg on the tour highlighting the city's center, designated a UNESCO World Heritage site. Of special note is the stunning Gothic Cathedral, an exquisite example of late Gothic architecture that houses one of the finest astronomical clocks in existence. See the magical La Petite France district, home to quaint shops and charming bistros, Place Kleber, a large historic square in the center of the city and Place Gutenberg, dedicated to the inventor of the printing press. This evening, the ship sets sail toward Speyer
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Monday - Morning in Speyer & Evening in Rudesheim
This morning arrive in Speyer. Perhaps take a refreshing morning walk through this picturesque town founded by the Romans, or alternatively, join the optional tour to Heidelberg, home to the oldest university in Germany and inspiration for some of the world's greatest writers and artists. The ship will continue sailing this morning and passengers joining the tour will rejoin the ship at lunchtime and relax on board this afternoon. After dinner, arrive in Rudesheim, a lively village in the heart of the Rhine; perhaps take a leisurely walk through town or visit a quaint wine tavern
Optional: Heidelberg City Tour (AM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Tuesday - Morning Cruising & Afternoon in Koblenz
This morning take in the spectacular vistas as the ship sails past castles perched on lofty cliffs, terraced vineyards and tiny villages. Pass the mighty Lorelei Rock on the eastern bank of the Rhine rising vertically from the waters, named for the siren "Lorelei" who bewitched sailors passing by. After lunch on board, the ship docks in Koblenz, located at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers. Join a walking tour and free time to explore the Romanesque architecture and imposing defensive towers of this 2000-year old city. Or, join the optional tour to the dramatic Marksburg Castle, the only hill castle on the Rhine that's never been destroyed and has been continuously occupied for over 700 years
Optional: Marksburg Castle (PM)
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Wednesday - Cologne City Tour
Today the ship will dock in Cologne, one of Germany's largest cities and capital of the Rhineland. Your walking tour of the city is highlighted by the soaring, twin-steeple Gothic cathedral that is the geographical and spiritual heart of the city. Known for its vibrant art scene, Cologne abounds with cafes, galleries, shops and taverns
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 12, Thursday - Amsterdam City Tour
Cruise into Amsterdam as you enjoy breakfast on board, and join a panoramic tour of 700-year-old Amsterdam. View the Royal Palace on Amsterdam's Dam Square, the Queen's official home-away-from-home. On to the Dutch National Monument dedicated by Queen Juliana as a memorial to the victims of WWII and to the unusual Skinny Bridge, once so narrow that pedestrians could not pass each other. Then, board a glass-top boat and cruise the winding canals for an up-close view of the stately historic homes, 16th-century warehouses and charming churches with striking bell towers. This evening bid farewell to your traveling companions on your final night on board
Overnight: River Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 13, Friday - Depart the Netherlands
This morning, disembark and transfer to the airport for your departure flight. Disembarkation will end at 9:30 AM
Meals: Breakfast

Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

Inclusions

Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

River Cruise Package Includes

  • Flights New York-Milan, Amsterdam-New York
    Other departure cities available.
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • 11 nights accommodations
  • 2 nights Lake Como
  • 2 nights Lucerne
  • 7 nights outside cabin aboard the First Class or First Class
  • River port charges of $190 per person
  • Cruise & hotel porterage
  • All transfers included only with airfare purchase on package arrival & departure dates†
  • 25 meals: 11 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 8 dinners
  • Cruise director & activities host throughout cruise
  • Tour manager in Como & Lucerne
  • Services of local guides in all major cities
  • Comfortable wireless earphones for enhanced touring during excursions

  • Special Features

  • A scenic cruise on spectacular Lake Como takes you to the exquisite village of Bellagio
  • Explore Lucerne with its pristine lakeside setting and gorgeous mountainous panorama
  • Walk the cobbled streets of tiny Breisach, a town that dates back over 4,000 years
  • Visit the Alsace capital of Strasbourg, designated a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Stroll the lanes filled with quaint wine taverns in the lively village of Rüdesheim
  • View the mighty Lorelei Rock named for the siren "Lorelei" rising vertically from the waters
  • Discover 2000-year-old Koblenz, with its superb Romanesque architecture
  • Sail on the legendary Rhine to Cologne, capital of the Rhineland
  • In Amsterdam, board a glass-top boat and cruise the winding canals

  • River Cruise Features & Amenities

  • Gala Welcome Dinner and Farewell Dinner
  • Wine and beer with dinners
  • Locally inspired recipes
  • Early riser breakfast in addition to buffet breakfast
  • Late night snack
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access in public areas
  • Self-serve coffee and tea station
  • Lounge serving premium spirits
  • Fitness center
  • Non-smoking ship interior
  • Shore excursions conducted exclusively in English
  • Know Before You Book - High & Low Water

    European river cruising has gained in popularity for very good reason. It's a relaxing and convenient way to experience Europe while enjoying the comfort of a deluxe ship. However, before making the decision to reserve your vacation, please be aware of potential conditions which may impact your cruise. While most of the time river cruises operate exactly as planned, weather conditions may result in high or low water levels which impact a ship's itinerary and, on occasion, render a ship unable to sail at all. On very rare occasions, other events such as heavy fog, a damaged lock, or an incapacitated vessel blocking the river, may impact a sailing. These events typically occur with little or no notice. In the event that a cruise is partially or completely impacted, the itinerary will be operated by deluxe motor coach, accompanied by a Tour Manager, with overnights in hotels. When the option exists, the operator will "swap ships" with another vessel sailing in the opposite direction, retaining the sailing experience. Crew, ship and cabin configuration may differ. The itinerary will include as many of the originally scheduled sightseeing features as possible, considering the travel time and distances required, as well as meals. While it is not possible to recreate the more leisurely comforts of sailings, we will endeavor to provide a comparable itinerary. These alternative services will be provided at no additional charge.

    †Transfers are available for purchase for land only or on alternative flight dates

    *Not Included:
    Optional shore excursions and gratuities.


    Additional Information:
    Cruise only price does not include arrival/departure transfers.

    Due to physical constraints and space limitations, wheelchairs and walkers are not allowed on motor coaches and/or river cruises. There are no elevators or chair lifts on board. Kindly refer to our Terms for additional information.

    While sailing with Monarch Cruises, passengers are subject to the cruise's Terms & Conditions which can be viewed at: .

    Know Before You Book - High & Low Water

    European river cruising has gained in popularity for very good reason. It's a relaxing and convenient way to experience Europe while enjoying the comfort of a deluxe ship. However, before making the decision to reserve your vacation, please be aware of potential conditions which may impact your cruise. While most of the time river cruises operate exactly as planned, weather conditions may result in high or low water levels which impact a ship's itinerary and, on occasion, render a ship unable to sail at all. On very rare occasions, other events such as heavy fog, a damaged lock, or an incapacitated vessel blocking the river, may impact a sailing. These events typically occur with little or no notice. In the event that a cruise is partially or completely impacted, the itinerary will be operated by deluxe motor coach, accompanied by a Tour Manager, with overnights in hotels. When the option exists, the operator will "swap ships" with another vessel sailing in the opposite direction, retaining the sailing experience. Crew, ship and cabin configuration may differ. The itinerary will include as many of the originally scheduled sightseeing features as possible, considering the travel time and distances required, as well as meals. While it is not possible to recreate the more leisurely comforts of sailings, we will endeavor to provide a comparable itinerary. These alternative services will be provided at no additional charge.

    OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

    Accommodations

    Hotel Metropole Suisse
    This first class hotel is located in the center of town, on the waterfront piazza.

    Hotel Continental Park
    This first class hotel is located in the heart of Lucerne.

    OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

    Questions & Answers

    Question: How many suitcases can I take with me on my trip?

    Each person is allowed one "check-in," and one "carry-on." Remember to take all valuables with you as "carry-on", because electronic equipment, cameras, laptops, jewelry, business documents and money are not covered by the airlines' liability, so always carry them aboard with you.

    Question: Is Airfare Included in the Price?

    Airfare from your point of origin to and from the trip is not included in the land price.

    Gate1 Tours Customer Reviews

    Overall Rating
    4.3
    Accommodations
    4
    Itinerary
    4.4
    Professional Staff
    4.5
    Repeat with Operator
    4.4
    Value for Money
    4.2

    Ratings based off 4891 reviews about Gate1 Tours - currently showing 15 reviews with comments only

    Awesome experience... knowledgeable and helpful tour guide (Hend), as well as all other employees.

    As always, everything went very smoothly.

    Great trip, loved the hotels and the service provided..

    Prompt, courteous, and professional service at a fair cost.

    We had a wonderful trip and we especially appreciated our tour guide in Vietnam, Tom. We're now looking into booking another trip with Gate1

    Gate 1 is really good at what it does.. Highly recommend.

    The trip and the experience exceeded our expectations. Both Affordable Tours and Gate 1 were outstanding.

    Gate 1 did a wonderful job of planning all the details so we could enjoy our experience. Well worth the money.

    The trip was excellent, well organized

    Gate 1 Discovery Tour was more than we expected, hotels were excellent, attraction entrance fees were all included. Couldn't be more pleased!

    Gate 1 was much better than I expected. I was really pleased with the tour and would consider traveling with them again.

    Alex was a super tour guide. The itinerary was full, enjoyable, interesting, and with the other travelers we truly enjoyed our trip. Thank you

    Affordable Tours took care of my booking and arranged my flights. It was handled efficiently and everything worked out beautifully.


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