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Rhine River Cruise

Updated on September 16, 2014

Cruising the Rhine- a Wonderful Way to Travel

In May of 2004, my husband and I took a river cruise that went from Basel, Switzerland to Antwerp, Belgium.

It was a great way to see that area of the world. We only had to unpack one time and we were able to tour cities in Switzerland, France, Germany, Holland, and Belgium.

Since many cities were built right along the banks of the river we were able to walk off the ship and into the center of each town. On many of the stops we would take a walking tour of the city and then would be on our own to explore. It was definitely our type of trip.

In this lens I will give you the highlights of each days stop and show you some photographs taken on the cruise.

photo by Mary Beth Granger

Day One

Arrival in Basel Switzerland

Embark River Cruise Ship

Viking River Cruises

a great way to travel

My husband and I chose to use Viking River Cruises for our cruise of the Rhine. It had been recommended to us by a business colleague who had raved about how wonderful it was to take a river cruise. After taking the cruise, my husband and I would agree it is a great way to travel.

The people at Viking cruise lines made our trip especially nice. They believe in great customer service and it showed throughout our trip.

When we arrived in Basil, they met us at the airport and helped us to get our luggage and make our way through customs. When we arrived at the ship we were greeted by the wonderful staff and made to feel welcome. Throughout the cruise everyone on board the ship was very helpful.

The food on the ship was great and there were several choices at each meal.

We also like the fact that the ship was small. With only 140 passengers on board we got to meet everyone and enjoyed making friends with people from all over the world.

Day Two

Tour Strasbourg, France

Strasbourg, France - French and German influence


On our first full day on the river cruise we docked in Strasbourg, France. Strasbourg is a wonderful old city that is very well preserved. It is was said to be one of the richest medieval cities in Europe.

In Strasbourg we took a walking tour of the old part of the city and visited the cathedral. This photo was taken to show some of the interesting detail in the houses around the square.

Day Three

Walking tour of Speyer, Germany

Speyer, Germany - Old Town Gate

In Speyer we took a walking tour of the city. It was a beautiful city with an immense cathedral that was founded in 1030.

This photo shows the Old Town Gate which dates to 1176. At 180 feet, it is one of the oldest and tallest town gates in Germany.

Day Four

Heidelberg - Morning


Heidelberg City View - beautiful city


In Heidelberg we took a coach tour and visited the castle. It was up a very steep hill and the views were beautiful from the top.

This photo was taken from the castle grounds looking down on the city.

Day Five

Rudesheim - Morning

Koblenz- Afternoon

Visiting Rudesheim and Cruising the Rhine

beautiful castles

On day 5 we visited Rudesheim in the morning. It was a very charming small town with lots of shops and cafes and very narrow streets. We took a mini train up the hill and stopped to visit the Music Museum, which was full of interesting antique musical instruments.

After visiting the museum we strolled the streets visiting the shops and slowly making our way back to the cruise ship.

The afternoon was spent cruising the Rhine and enjoying all the sites the cruise manager pointed out. There were many castles on the hillsides and the ship also passed the Lorelei a legendary rock rising 440 feet above the river.

It was a wonderfully relaxing afternoon!



Day Six

Cochem - Morning

Cologne- Afternoon

Cologne at Night - wonderful old cathedral


Read about Germany before you Go - guidebooks are a great way to prepare for your trip

If you want to get the most out of any trip it is good to read about the area before you arrive. This way you can tailor the trip to your tastes and get the most out of your adventure.

There have been many times when I've got back home and wished I had taken in a certain site. I always say "If only I'd known". I now try to prevent that by reading up on each area before I leave on the trip.

Frommer's guidebooks are a good source of information about an area.

Day Seven

Amsterdam, Holland


a great city to visit

In Amsterdam we took cruise on one of the glass topped canal boats. That is a really great way to see the city. On the cruise you get to see the wooden draw bridges, some very interesting looking houseboats, and some of Amsterdam's oldest and loveliest buildings.

The tour ended at the Rijksmuseum and we went on a tour of the museum. It holds a great collection of some of the great Dutch and Flemish Masters.

Day Eight


View from Top Deck of Cruise Ship - approaching the bridge at Rotterdam


Rotterdam is Holland's great port city. Rotterdam was bombed twice during the last World War and is now a thoroughly modern city.

We took a bus ride in Rotterdam and stopped to visit the Jenever Museum which is dedicated to the juniper brandy that is popular in many Dutch households. We got to sample some of the brandy at the end of our tour.

Day Nine


Delft, Holland

great Delft pottery

I really enjoyed our visit to Delft, Holland. It was my favorite town on the cruise. We visited the factory where Delft pottery is made. It is a blue and white glazed earthenware that is known worldwide. It was great seeing how it is made and shopping for a few special pieces.

The city of Delft is also the birthplace of the famous painter Jan Vermeer. We took a walking tour of the city and I was delighted with the wonderful canals and the historic buildings. I had just read the book Girl with The Pearl Earring that takes place in Delft and I could just picture the events of the book taking place along the streets that I walked.

The Girl with the Pearl Earring - historical novel

This is the novel that I read just before my trip. It takes place in Delft, Holland and is loosely based on the painting by Jan Vermeer.

It is a delightful book, and visiting Delft made me appreciate it even more.

Day Ten

Bruges, Belgium

Antwerp & Bruges

On our last full day of the cruise we docked in Antwerp and took a bus ride to the town of Bruges. We thoroughly enjoyed our day in Bruges. We had friends from England who drove over for a short holiday and met us in Bruges.

We spent the day exploring the town with it's beautiful historic buildings, walking past the canals, and eating at a restaurant right on the town square.

The next day we took a bus to the airport in Brussels for our long trip home.

We have a lot of wonderful memories from our trip and we hope we can go back and take another river cruise some day.

Have your ever taken a cruise? - I'd love to hear your comments

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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      What a lovely lens. Thanks.

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 

      5 years ago

      I did, and this lens makes my day, it remind me of my vacations in Europe where I was born. Thanks so much Blessings!

    • delia-delia profile image


      5 years ago

      Came back to let you know our trip starting in Prague then the River Cruise ending in Paris was amazing, I'm ready to go again! I Blessed your lens in August, however the green thumb doesn't show up, so will submit again!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I did get to take a river cruise on the Rhine. It wasn't a long one like this; but some of the photos look familiar. It was really enjoyable. As always, excellent photos.

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 

      5 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      I enjoyed this virtual Rhine River Cruise. Your photos and products are beautiful

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 

      5 years ago from Canada

      My name is Lorelei so the River Rhine holds a special meaning to me. One day I will get busy and do an article on the legend.

    • delia-delia profile image


      6 years ago

      I've taken regular ship cruises and a cruise from Linz Austria down the Danube for the day, but now I'm preparing to leave for a Viking River Cruise "City Lights" starting in Prague through Germany to Paris, should be nice.

      Very nice lens ~d-artist Squid Angel Blessing~

    • mbgphoto profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Beth Granger 

      6 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      @bluewren56 lm: I hope you enjoy your cruise as much as we did. It sure is a great way to travel.

    • bluewren56 lm profile image

      bluewren56 lm 

      6 years ago

      I loved reading through your lens, so exciting. My husband and I have booked to go on a Viking River Cruise next year, 2013. Can't wait, and your lens has only heightened my excitement.

    • playercoach profile image


      6 years ago

      I really want to take a river cruise and this looks like it was a fun one!

    • Ninche profile image


      6 years ago

      I've never been on a cruise but I'm pretty sure I will. It looks really great, especially river cruise like this one!

    • WilliamPower profile image


      6 years ago

      Yes we have! The Rhine River daytrip from Cologne to Bingen by train then on the cruise ship thru the gorge and castles back to Cologne. It was our 25th wedding anniversary. Stayed in Cologne across the street from the Cathedral. Also was in Belgium, Holland, Germany and France. This September 2012 will be our 60th wedding anniversary. It's been a while!

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 

      6 years ago from Southampton, UK

      I haven't done much cruising, but the closest to this would be when we finished university, and 15 of us rented 2 motor boats and toured the Norfolk Broads, a large area of wetlands in Eastern England. It was a great 2 weeks, but the sun only shone 1 day. I would love to visit Germany, it's so different to the USA, and even to England. You must have wonderful memories of this trip.

    • Have2Cruise LM profile image

      Have2Cruise LM 

      7 years ago

      What an awesome trip!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I drove near most of these places -- cruising would have been more relaxing -- blessed by a SquidAngel!

    • puzzlerpaige profile image


      7 years ago

      This looks like such a wonderful adventure. The places are beautiful. Your lens is very helpful for letting folks know what to expect on the cruise. This is now on my want-to-do list.

    • ChrisDay LM profile image

      ChrisDay LM 

      7 years ago

      I've been to all those lovely places but never cruised on the Rhine - I bet it was breathtaking (and oh the wine) - thanks for sharing this log of your trip.

    • Kiwisoutback profile image


      8 years ago from Massachusetts

      Wow, this looks like an amazing cruise. I've never taken a cruise, just because I'm a busy body and always have to be doing something, but I'd make the exception for this one and a cruise to Alaska. This looks incredible.

    • piedromolinero profile image


      8 years ago

      What a nice trip, there are a so many historical places to see and visit along the Rhine River and your description and photos document it so nicely.

    • Faye Rutledge profile image

      Faye Rutledge 

      8 years ago from Concord VA

      No...won't catch me on the water. :-) Beautiful pics! and, good use of the new widgets. :-)

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 

      8 years ago from United States

      Wow! What a wonderful cruise! I would love to make this trip, if I could make myself forget it is a boat :) Totally awesome and angel blessed!

      PS ~ Love your use of the new widgets!

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 

      8 years ago from UK

      I would LOVE to try this cruise. You really bring it to life with your choice of images, and it sounds like you went to some fascinating destinations.

    • evelynsaenz1 profile image

      Evelyn Saenz 

      8 years ago from Royalton

      I actually took a cruise down the Rhine back in 1973. It only lasted for an hour or two but it was quite memorable. I remember seeing vineyards and castles.After reading this lens I would love to do it again but this time I would do it the way you did taking days rather than hours.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      What incredible pictures. You've really displayed this lens beautifully as always. I've never been on a cruise but one day when the kids are old enough I plan on taking one with just my husband. Thanks for sharing this lens! 5******

    • shwetashah profile image


      9 years ago

      Really good work. And good lens crafting

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 

      9 years ago from Canada

      EXCELLENT lens! Blessed & lensrolled to How To Choose A Cruise in Europe.

    • profile image


      9 years ago


    • RhondaAlbom profile image

      Rhonda Albom 

      9 years ago from New Zealand

      What a wonderful trip, and a great way to display it. Although I had never thought of it before, this cruise is now on my life's wish list. Thanks for sharing. 5*

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Love the photos and the pictures of Holland certainly brought back some memories of my younger days. Great lens.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Well, you've sold me on this trip! I've never done a cruise, but I would contemplate the Rhine River -- especially considering I'm all about European vacations. Love that Castle on the hill -- wonder if there is a lens on that?

    • GonnaFly profile image


      9 years ago from Australia

      Looks soooo good. Great pictures to keep my interest ;-) 5*

    • LoKackl profile image


      9 years ago

      In my lengthy checkered past I knew a retired teacher at American Schools in Europe in Germany. She would often sound rhapsodic about the Rhine River. Now I know why! Looks wonderful!

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 

      9 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      Beautiful photos. I would love to go on a cruise. If only I could get my husband to join me. 5*

    • Linda BookLady profile image

      Linda Jo Martin 

      9 years ago from Post Falls, Idaho, USA

      How very beautiful! Thanks for sharing your adventure with us!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Very nicely done, Mary Beth! I would love to take that cruise.

    • annetteghallowe1 profile image


      9 years ago

      I want to go! My sister did a Viking cruise last year and loved it. Beautiful photos and a beautiful lens. 5*

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Hope to visit the Rhineland one day, maybe when the kids are grown! 5 stars & a Squid Angel blessing!

    • Holley Web profile image

      Holley Web 

      9 years ago

      And my Italy lens.. :)

    • Holley Web profile image

      Holley Web 

      9 years ago

      Spectacular! I want to go so badly now! Just beautiful! I've been over it 3 times and can't decide which I like best! 5*s and lenrolled to my Savannah, GA lens.


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