Enjoy a relaxing cruise on the Romantic Rhine, Europe's longest river. Travel onboard the deluxe MS Scenic Crystal, exploring the wonderful Christmas Markets while absorbing the local, festive atmosphere at this magical time of year.
1 Depart the USA
Depart the USA on your overnight flight to Zurich, Switzerland.
2 Zurich - Basel, Switzerland
Welcome to Switzerland! Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met by a representative of Mayflower Cruises & Tours and transferred to your Scenic Space-Ship. All flights must arrive into Zurich by 1:00 p.m. Relax and raise your glass in a toast to the marvelous cruise ahead at this evening’s welcome reception. Meal: D
3 Kehl (docking site for Strasbourg, France)
With an afternoon arrival in Kehl, travel by coach across the river to Strasbourg, France, where a local guide leads you on a walking tour through this picturesque town. Stroll through the charming Old Quarter, ‘La Petit France’, admire the half-timbered houses and marvel at the gothic cathedral in the city center. Enjoy free time to visit the stalls of Strasbourg’s Christkindelsmärkt, one of the largest in Europe, before returning to the ship. Meals: B, L, D
4 Rastatt (Baden Baden), Germany
Famous for its Roman baths, Baden Baden is a charming town in the Black Forest. Today’s Freechoice
activities, from the port of Rastatt, are: join a local guide on a tour of this picturesque town and learn of its rich heritage. OR, take an active hike to the ruins of Hohanbaden Castle (also known as Altes Schloss) where you can find dungeons and climb the stairs for an incredible view of the Black Forest, Baden Baden and Rhine Valley.
Alternatively, visit the Mercedes-Benz factory where you discover the ‘behind the scenes’ activities and learn about the fascinating history of this luxury brand, or relax with a visit to a rejuvenating thermal spa. This evening’s Enrich activity is a special treat as you attend a private evening concert in a fine baroque palace. It’ll be an evening of grandeur unlike any other and a chance to create memories you’ll cherish for a lifetime. Meals: B, L, D
5 Mannheim (docking site for Heidelberg excursion)
Awaken this morning in the town of Mannheim, departure point for the day’s activities. Your Freechoice
activities include a visit to Heidelberg, with two options: visiting the castle and a walking tour, OR, a walk through the city on an orientation tour. Do not miss out on shopping for unique treasures at the Christmas Market in Heidelberg! Meals: B, L, D
Relax onboard as the ship makes her way to Koblenz. Upon arrival, there is a choice of two Freechoice
activities. Explore Koblenz on a walking tour with a local guide and see this historic city which straddles two of Europe’s most beautiful rivers. In the old part of the city, six areas offer more than 100 glittering, festive, cottage-style stands and Lebkuchenherzen (traditional gingerbread hearts) to create a magical European Christmas experience.
OR, travel by coach to Cochem and discover a true medieval gem resting on the banks of the Mosel River. Feel as if you’ve stepped straight into a fairytale as you have a guided tour through town that culminates with a visit to the iconic 19th-century Reichsburg Castle. Meals: B, L, D
Seven markets transform the picturesque Cologne into a winter wonderland over the Christmas season. Upon arrival, stroll through the city on a guided walking tour and get up-close to the filigree twin towers of the famous cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Enjoy free time and visit the cathedral Christmas markets in the Domplatz, in the shadows of the historic cathedral. This square is also home to the largest Christmas tree in the Rhineland. Decorated mugs hold steaming hot Glühwein and local vendors sell handmade sweets and local delicacies. Meals: B, L, D
8 Amsterdam, the Netherlands
The day begins with your choice of three Freechoice
activities. Explore Amsterdam on a guided walking tour, pausing along the way to sample the Dutch delicacy, herring. OR, cruise the iconic canals that have made Amsterdam world famous. Alternatively, discover charming Volendam, with its unusual raised homes and quaint wooden church, before heading to the equally charming village of Edam.
Afterwards, you may wish to visit one of the many Christmas markets in the city. Perhaps sample delicious Dutch treats such as Olibol and Poffertjes, peruse the stalls for some last-minute traditional gifts, or simply wander the streets taking in the magic of Amsterdam at this special time of the year. Meals: B, L, D
9 Amsterdam / USA
It’s time to bid farewell to the Captain and crew and depart for the Amsterdam Schiphol Airport as you say goodbye to Europe and return home with lifelong memories of your Christmas Markets cruise along the Rhine River. Meal: B
Itinerary is subject to change.