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Hosted By: Darren Maier
Explore one of the most spellbinding river systems in Europe with a cruise down the Rhine River in the luxurious Amadeus Queen ship and all meals included onboard. Begin in Lucerne, Switzerland with a tour of the medieval city, take a cog railway ride to the top of Mount Rigi, and have a delightful ferry ride across the sparkling blue waters of Lake Lucerne. We then begin our opulent seven-night cruise with many ports of call throughout France, Germany, and the Netherlands, as well as sightseeing along the Moselle River. Enjoy a group tour to view the best attractions in each city and a variety of included excursions, from canal cruises to wine, beer, and cheese tastings! Disembark in Amsterdam to visit the Zaanse Schans open-air museum and Holland’s largest art museum, the Rijksmuseum, before concluding our spectacular getaway with a celebratory Farewell Dinner.
September 9th, 2024 - September 20th, 2024
Price Per Person
Double Haydn Staterm
Double Strauss Staterm
Double Mozart Staterm
Double Mozart Suite
Single Haydn Staterm
Single Strauss Staterm
Single Mozart Staterm
Single Mozart Suite
Final Payment Date: 06/06/2024
Day 1 : Overnight Flight to Europe
Our journey begins with an overnight flight to Switzerland.
Day 2 : Mount Rigi
We land in Zurich this morning and motorcoach to Lucerne, a city known for its medieval architecture and mountain landscapes. Next, a relaxing ferry ride takes us across beautiful blue Lake Lucerne to Vitznau, where we embark on a special cogwheel train journey up Mount Rigi. Upon reaching the highest point, Rigi Kulm, we have time to relax and soak up the breathtaking panoramic views of Swiss Mittlelland. We then descend by cable car and return to Lucerne where we check into this evening’s accommodations. Later, enjoy getting to know your fellow travelers over a delicious Welcome Dinner.
Day 3 : Lucerne
After breakfast, we begin our day with a walking tour of Lucerne to explore some of the city’s most iconic sights including Chapel Bridge, a covered wooden foot bridge decorated with interior paintings that spans the river Reuss. Next, experience a Swiss folklore lunch at Stadtkeller, a wonderful treat of hearty fare and traditional Swiss music including cow bells, flag throwing, and yodeling by locals dressed in customary outfits. We then travel by motorcoach to Basel and board the luxurious Amadeus Queen. Enjoy a panoramic window, drop-down window, or balcony for beautiful views from the comfort of your stateroom and all meals included onboard. Once settled, we gather for a reception and dinner together.
Start the day with a walking tour of Lucerne known for its covered wooden foot bridge decorated with interior paintings. Later we board the luxurious Amadeus Imperial. Once settled, enjoy a reception and dinner onboard the ship.
Day 4 : Strasbourg
Our first port of call is Strasbourg, located on the French border with Germany and home to the European Parliament. We begin with a comfortable motorcoach tour through the city to view incredible architecture, then travel into the historic part of town, where we visit famous Strasbourg Cathedral and the Grand Île, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Our tour continues with a delightful canal cruise on the river with sights of old half-timbered houses and a former mill in “Petite France.” We also see the Palais de Rohan, Council of Europe, and Ponts Couverts- a set of three bridges and four towers from the 13th century. Later, relax on the sun deck or treat yourself to a massage as we sail to Germany.
Located on the French border with Germany, Strasbourg is a gorgeous city rich in historic architecture and other preserved pieces of local heritage for visitors to admire. Also the home of the European Parliament, Strasbourg’s historic city center, the Grande Île, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We return to the ship for lunch. Relax on the sun deck or treat yourself to a massage while we sail to Germany.
Day 5 : Speyer & Heidelberg
We start our day docking in the beautiful town of Speyer. Enjoy sights on a walking tour, the most noteworthy being the Speyer Cathedral, which dominates this city’s setting with its grand structure and beauty. Afterwards, indulge in lunch aboard the ship on our way to Mannheim. We then take a short drive to Heidelberg, Germany’s oldest and most famous university town. It’s known for its Baroque narrow streets, picturesque red roof tiled houses, and beautiful 18th-century bridges. Our time here includes an enchanting tour of Heidelberg Castle from the early 1200s, Germany’s most popular castle ruin.
We dock in the handsome town of Speyer. The Speyer Cathedral dominates this city’s setting with its grand structure and beauty.
The ship arrives in Mannheim this afternoon. We take a short drive to Heidelberg, Germany’s oldest and most famous university town. Heidelberg is known for its Baroque narrow streets, picturesque red roof tiled houses, beautiful 18th-century bridges, and a breathtaking half-ruined castle.
This evening, enjoy the Captain’s Gala dinner.
Day 6 : Middle Rhine
This morning’s port is Rudesheim, a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the heart of Reingau wine region, especially known for its Rieslings. We take an incredible tram ride on the Winzerexpress through the scenic Rhine Valley vineyards to a local winery and indulge in various regional flavors. Afterwards, there’s time for us to stroll down the area’s famous and charming alley, Drosselgasse. This narrow cobblestone walkway has fabulous wineries, markets, and historic buildings. Next, head to the top deck for spectacular views of castles and steep hillsides as our vessel cruises the scenic Middle Rhine through the Rhine Gorge. Later in the day we arrive at Koblenz, one of the oldest and most diverse cities in Germany, located at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers. The architecture of churches, castles, and palaces tell of times gone by as we explore the area. Our sightseeing continues with a cable car ride above the Rhine to the magnificent Ehrenbreitstein Fortress. Dating back to 1000 AD, it is one of Europe’s largest preserved fortresses and now houses the Koblenz State Museum with expansive, interesting exhibits.
In the morning visit Rudesheim, located in the heart of the Reingau wine region, a UNESCO World Heritage Site especially known for its Rieslings. Be amazed at Siegfried’s Mechanical Cabinet, boasting a large collection of historic self-playing instruments spanning three centuries.
Next, head to the top deck as our vessel cruises the scenic Middle Rhine through the Rhine Gorge. As the Rhine carves its way through steep hills there is always at least one castle in sight. Watch for the Lorelei in the narrowest gorge on the Rhine.
Later in the day we arrive at Koblenz, one of the oldest and most diverse cities in Germany, located at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers. The architecture of churches, castles and palaces tell of times gone by as we explore the area.
Day 7 : Moselle River & Cochem
Today we depart Koblenz and take the scenic route along the Moselle River, cruising through one of Germany’s most beautiful river valleys. Gaze upon vineyards, castles, and ruins covering the rolling hillsides, with quaint villages and towns near the riverbanks. Our ship docks in the charming town of Cochem, known for its traditional half-timbered houses, Middle Age history, and wine culture dating back over a thousand years. Here, we visit impressive Reichsburg Castle, a medieval castle famously rebuilt in a fairytale style that sits perched on a rugged rock above the town. Admire its Renaissance and Baroque interior, then look down onto the spectacular vistas of the Moselle Valley below.
Discover the charming town of Cochem, known for its traditional half-timbered houses and medieval castle rebuilt in a fairytale style. As we stroll through the old town we sample regional wines and experience gracious hospitality.
Cruise the Moselle River on an excursion to visit one of Germany’s most beautiful river valleys. View vineyards covering the rolling hillsides, castles, and ruins dotting the hilltops above villages and towns along the riverbanks.
Day 8 : Cologne
Our port of call today is 2,000-year-old Cologne. This cultural hub is a landmark of High Gothic architecture, starting with the extraordinary twin-spired cathedral. The city was rebuilt after the World War II bombing and has since become an affluent area boasting numerous museums and art galleries, including many masterpieces by Picasso. While here, enjoy a tasting of Cologne’s famous beer, called Kölsch. This evening, a fantastic dinner awaits us at the Captain’s Gala.
Today’s port of call is 2,000-year-old Cologne. This cultural hub is a landmark of High Gothic architecture, starting with the extraordinary cathedral, its twin spires dominating the skyline. After the bombing of Cologne during World War II, the city was rebuilt and has become a major area boasting numerous museums and art galleries. Afterward, enjoy a tasting of the famous beer of Cologne called Kölsch.
Day 9 : Amsterdam, Volendam & Edam
This morning we embark on an incredible guided tour of Amsterdam, featuring a delightful canal cruise for unique views from the city’s iconic waterway. Later, we board our motorcoach for an afternoon excursion to the charming fishing villages of Volendam and Edam. Volendam is known for its vibrant harbor, distinctive music, and time-honored traditions including authentic costumes that can still be seen in old town today. A short drive out to the countryside brings us to a local cheese farm, where we learn the fascinating process of how Dutch cheese is made and sample some ourselves. Before we journey back to our ship, we also visit Edam, known for its cheese and Carillon tower. Stroll down its narrow cobblestone streets to appreciate the beautiful historic buildings and visit the cheese weighing house.
Then enjoy an afternoon excursion in the charming fishing villages of Volendam and Edam.
Day 10 : Rijksmuseum & Haarlem
We disembark in Amsterdam for a morning packed with fine arts on a guided tour of the country’s largest museum, Rijksmuseum. Immerse yourself in 800 years of Dutch history as you stroll the halls decorated with 16th and 17th-century art including works by Vermeer, Frans Hals, and Rembrandt. We then enjoy a walking tour in Haarlem with views of St. Bavo Church and the Corrie ten Boom Museum, a hiding place for Jews during World War II. Our accommodations for the next two evenings are at a wonderful hotel in Haarlem.
This morning is packed with the fine arts as we embark on a guided tour of the country’s largest museum, Rijksmuseum. Stroll the halls decorated with 16th and 17th-century art including works by Vermeer, Frans Hals, and Rembrandt. We also have a delightful cruise on Amsterdam's signature canals. Our accommodations are at a charming hotel just outside the city.
Day 11 : Zaanse Schans
After breakfast at the hotel, we step back in time at Zaanse Schans, an open-air museum that brings Dutch heritage to life. Admire the traditional buildings and restored windmills in this recreated 18th-19th century village. Visit the museum, learn about regional costumes, explore exhibits on chocolate making, and watch artisans make cheese, clogs, and other crafts. Tonight, we gather to celebrate our travels with a Farewell Dinner.
Step back in time at Zaanse Schans, an open-air museum that brings Dutch heritage to life. Traditional buildings and restored windmills show signs of the villages that once dotted the land. Visit the museum, wander through the village, explore the working mills, and watch artisans make cheese, clogs, and other traditional crafts.
We celebrate our travels with a Holiday Vacations Farewell Dinner.
Day 12 : Fly Home
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Menomonie, WI - AmericInn By Wyndham Menomonie
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Darren has been WEAU’s chief meteorologist since 2011. He previously was the chief meteorologist at the NBC affiliate in Lima, Ohio. He has 25 years professional meteorologist experience and nearly 20 years of broadcast experience.
He was born and raised in New Britain, Connecticut. In 2009, Darren earned the prestigious CBM certification from the American Meteorological Society. In 2018 and 2019, he won the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association award for best weathercast in small market television.
He has covered Wisconsin’s longest track tornado, classified as an EF-3, on record. Darren also covered the record-breaking winter season of 2018-2019, which brought the all-time snowiest February on record!
He enjoys playing video games, astronomy, photography, gardening, tennis, and biking. Darren has two children and a pair of Shiba-Inus.
Join him and WEAU TV viewers on this fabulous trip of a lifetime.
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Tour days tend to be shorter in length, at a relaxed pace, and include lots of unscheduled time for leisure. Expect standing and walking for extended periods of time on flat surfaces, mostly low altitudes, and consistent temperatures.
Tour days usually move at a leisurely pace. Some days’ scheduled activities last longer than others. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on occasionally uneven terrain. You may experience changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a consistent pace, and may include long travel days. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on uneven surfaces. Some destinations may have changes in altitude and/or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a brisk pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on uneven surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a vigorous pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on rough surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.