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22560
Western Europe

Medieval & Modern History: Amsterdam to Basel Along the Rhine

Wind your way through European history on a riverboat voyage along the magnificent Rhine, from the Netherlands to Switzerland.
Rating (4.67)
Program No. 22560RJ
Length
11 days
Starts at
3,999
Western Europe

Medieval & Modern History: Amsterdam to Basel Along the Rhine

Wind your way through European history on a riverboat voyage along the magnificent Rhine, from the Netherlands to Switzerland.
Length
11 days
Starts at
3,999
Program No. 22560 RJ
climate
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At a Glance

Flanked by rich history and striking beauty, the Rhine River winds through some of the world’s most charming cities, flowing past medieval ruins, soaring cliffs and terraced vineyards. Immerse yourself in world history and European heritage on this riverboat adventure from the canals of Amsterdam to the art museums of Switzerland. Explore Germany’s medieval old town centers, voyage through the verdant and mountainous Black Forest region and experience the magnificent Rhine Falls.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Discover the Netherlands during expert-led excursions in Amsterdam and Haarlem.
  • Explore the ancient cities and extraordinary landscapes of Germany’s Black Forest region.
  • In Basel, learn about Swiss culture at museums and to a visit of a local school.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
The Improbable Voyage
by Tristan Jones
Jones, an inveterate Welsh sailor, adventurer and storyteller, channels Eastern Europe circa 1985 in his tale of a tough voyage along the Rhine and Danube to the Black Sea.
A Worldly Art
by Mariet Westermann
This appreciative analysis of Dutch art in its Golden Age (1585-1718) features 100 exemplary illustrations by Rembrandt, Vermeer, Pieter de Hooch, Frans Hals and other Old Masters.
Amsterdam, A History of the World's Most Liberal City
by Russell Shorto
Russell Shorto opens this delightful ode to an adopted city with his daily journey, by bike of course, through his neighborhood to drop off his toddler son. He spins a tale of a diverse city wrestled from the sea, its coffee shops, canals and its personalities and politics, with panache.
La Place de la Concorde Suisse
by John McPhee
McPhee deploys his usual insight and wonderful prose on the phenomenon of the Switzerland army to present an irreverent portrait of Switzerland and the Swiss mindset.
The Rhine: An Eco-Biography, 1815-2000
by Mark Cioc, William Cronon (Introduction)
A scholarly, well-researched environmental history of the Rhine, particularly its role in European economic and German national history over the past 200 years.
The German Way
by Hyde Flippo
This clever A-to-Z guide to quirks, attitudes, behavior and customs is a terrific resource for travelers seeking insight into why the Germans, Austrians and Swiss do what they do.
The Blue Flower
by Penelope Fitzgerald
Set in the Age of Goethe, this exquisitely written short novel is a fictional account of the life of the Romantic poet Novalis. It paints a vivid picture of German intellectual and mercantile life in the late 1700s.
Germany, Benelux, Austria, Czech Republic Map
by Michelin Travel Publications
This handy map shows road and river routes from Amsterdam and Berlin to Prague, Vienna, Munich and Salzburg at a scale of 1:1,000,000.
The Burgermeister's Daughter, Scandal in a Sixteenth-Century German Town
by Steven Ozment
Meticulously researched and absorbing, this narrative by a Harvard historian traces the legal battle of the daughter of a well-to-do family who was thrown out of her home and disinherited in 1525.
The Germans
by Gordon A. Craig
A gifted historian, Craig explores the paradoxes of German identity in this masterful portrait of German life, past and present, with chapters on religion, money, Jews, women, literature and society, Berlin and language.
The Gothic Enterprise, A Guide to Understanding the Medieval Cathedral
by Robert A. Scott
An enthusiast, Scott delves into the history, design, architecture and wonder of Europe's medieval cathedrals and great Abbey churches.
Amsterdam, A Traveler's Literary Companion
by Manfred Wolf (Editor)
Organized by district, these 17 contemporary short stories by modern Dutch writers, including Cees Nooteboom and Geert Mak, are set amid the canals, cafes and neighborhoods of Amsterdam.
For Strasbourg, Conversations of Friendship and Philosophy
by Jacques Derrida
In this series of essays, the French philosopher and literary theorist reminisces about the city of Strasbourg and the philosophical friendships he developed there over a period of forty years. More than just a personal narrative, however, it is a profound interrogation of the relationship between philosophy and place, friendship and language.
A Time of Gifts
by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Fermor effortlessly interweaves anecdote, history and culture in this exuberant account of a walk from Holland, up the Rhine and down the Danube, through Germany, Prague and Austria in 1933. Written not in the moment, but 40 years later, the accumulation of time and experience gives the book particular poignancy.
Eyewitness Guide Germany
by Eyewitness Guides
Featuring color photography, excellent local maps and a region-by-region synopsis of the country's attractions.
All Along the Rhine
by Kay Shaw Nelson
Subtitled "Recipes, Wine and Lore from Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, Liechtenstein and Holland" this tribute to the Rhine Valley complements its history and culture with 130 recipes.
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11 days
10 nights
26 meals
9 B 8 L 9 D
DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive, Check-In, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Basel
D
Hotel Bildungszentrum 21

Activity note: Hotel check in is at 2:00 p.m.

Afternoon: Transfer from Zurich to the Basel hotel. Your Group Leader will give you tips how to best spend your afternoon. Later, meet for a welcome orientation. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the program theme, the up-to-date Daily Schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. Indicated times are approximate. Program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: Welcome Dinner at the hotel. Water is included in the program cost at all meals. Unless otherwise noted, dinners on this program are typically a three-course set menu.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
3
Basel, Switzerland, Embarkation
Basel
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Activity note: Embarkation time is at 3:30 p.m. The time available in each port is set by the cruise line. Whenever possible, the Road Scholar daily schedule indicates port arrival and departure times (subject to change by the cruise line). This may mean that free time in port is limited. Regardless of the time in port, Road Scholar delivers a robust educational program.

Breakfast: On this program, breakfasts will offer a typical European style breakfast buffet with breads, cheeses, cold-cuts, yogurt, fruit, cereals, juice, milk, coffee, tea and water.

Morning: This morning, check out of the hotel. Your luggage will be transferred to the ship. Take in two lectures on board. The first lecture will introduce you to Switzerland's culture, history, and current affairs. After a coffee break, learn about Basel and the Arts. Basel is Switzerland's city of culture. Visitors are confronted by art at every turn - whether simply wandering through the streets of the Old Town or visiting one of the city's nearly forty museums. Learn more about the connection of Basel and the Arts.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant in Basel. Unless otherwise noted, lunches on this program are typically a two-course set menu.

Afternoon: Explore Basel during a guided excursion.

Dinner: Dinner on board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
Basel, Switzerland
Basel
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: Explore the Basel Fine Arts Museum. The newly renovated Kunstmuseum Basel ranks among the most renowned institutions of its kind in Europe and beyond. Its world-famous collection now encompasses around 4.000 paintings, sculptures, installations, and videos as well as 300.000 drawings and prints from seven centuries.

Lunch: At a local restaurant in Basel.

Afternoon: Enjoy some free time to explore Basel on your own.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
Colmar & Breisach
Breisach
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: Discover Colmar and the beautiful Unterlinden Museum.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: Free morning in Breisach, a small town situated along the Rhine in the Rhine Valley.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: Enjoy an onboard performance.

DAY
6
Strasbourg, France
Strasbourg
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: Expert-led excursion through Strasbourg, the capital city of the Alsace region in northeastern France. It's the seat of the European Parliament and sits near the German border, with culture and architecture blending German and French influences. It's known for its Gothic Cathédrale Notre-Dame, featuring daily shows from its astronomical clock and sweeping views of the Rhine River from partway up its 466 foot spire.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: As the ship sails, take in a lecture on the European Union.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Sailing, Lorelei on the Rhine
Mainz
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: Sailing. Enjoy the scenic Lorelei stretch of the Rhine.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: This afternoon, walk in Mainz, followed by a visit to the Gutenberg Museum. Mainz was founded more than 2,000 years ago by the Romans and is currently the capital of the Rhineland-Palatinate.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
8
Cologne & Koblenz, Germany
Cologne
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: While the ship sails take in a lecture on European Architecture.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: Expert-led walk of Cologne, a 2,000-year-old city spanning the Rhine River in western Germany. A landmark of High Gothic architecture set amid reconstructed old town, the twin-spired Cologne Cathedral is also known for its gilded medieval reliquary and sweeping river views.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
9
Kröller-Müller Museum
Düsseldorf
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: Enjoy an excursion to the Kröller-Müller Museum, an art museum and sculpture garden.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: While the ship sails take in a lecture on Dutch history.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
10
Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum
Amsterdam
B,L,D
MS Douce France

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: Expert-led excursion through Amsterdam, the Netherlands’ capital, known for its artistic heritage, elaborate canal system and narrow houses with gabled facades, legacies of the city’s 17th-century Golden Age.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: Transfer by bus to the Rijksmuseum and enjoy an expert-led walk through the museum, focusing on its highlights. Afterwards, there is some free time.

Dinner: Farewell dinner on board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
11
Departures
In Flight
B

Breakfast: At the hotel. This concludes our program.

Morning: All beautiful things come to an end, so we transfer to the airport. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures.






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