4 days - 3 nights - from € 299 p.p. Historic Cities of Rhine & Mosel
   

 

 

 

Some of Germany's greatest cultural treasures can be found in the cities along the Rhine and Mosel Rivers. The Romans built camps, vineyards and great cities along these waterways, establishing a tradition of wine production in the region that thrives still today. The banks of the Rhine and Mosel are dotted with the castles and fortresses of the medieval elite, and the great buildings of her cities are a testament to the wealth and culture that can be achieved with maritime commerce. Visit Trier, Koblenz and Wiesbaden to experience all these famed rivers can offer.

 
Day 1 - Wiesbaden

Arrive at Frankfurt International Airport (or at Wiesbaden Main Train Station) to start your tour. Taxi transfer to your hotel in the Historic Highlights City of Wiesbaden, located in the City Center.
The town received its descriptive name, literally "bathing in the fields," from the Franconians in 829. Long before this group, though, the thermal waters were discovered by the Romans. Nearly 2000 years ago, Roman soldiers began to bathe in the thermal water that bubbled up through the ground. They found these steaming pools had healing effects on them, and the ancient attraction still remains. Wiesbaden's wealthy spa, resort and casino owners can thank those stinky Roman soldiers and their inadvertent discovery while washing up in the fields for their continued popularity and profitability today. It began to develop as a resort town in the early nineteenth century, and the European aristocracy came in droves. The presence, prestige and influence of the cultural elite helped develop an extensive calendar of cultural events (many surviving to this day) and the magnificent structures built to house them. Casinos became popular in Wiesbaden to entertain the royalty, nobility and intellectual elite between dips in the baths and it quickly became one of the leading spa destinations in Europe. The Heidenmauer (Heathens' Wall) is the city's oldest structure, dating from Roman times, and is found next to the Römertor (Roman Gateway). It was part of a Roman stronghold dating back to 364-375 A.D. built to ward off attacks from the Germanic tribes. Only fragments of the wall remain today. The Römertor was built in 1902 with a covered wooden bridge. In the Römisches Freilichtmuseum (Roman Open-Air Museum) next to the Römertor, there are copies of stone tablets found in Wiesbaden from the Roman era. In the Museum Wiesbaden, an extensively renovated art collection and exhibit focuses on the "Roman Era and the Early Middle Ages." The Altstadt (Old City), once encircled by a city wall, lends itself to strolls through its narrow, twisting alleys lined with houses dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. Perhaps the most impressive area is the district around the "new" Kurhaus, the massive and magnificent Wilhelminian structure that opened in 1907. The neoclassical structure is awe-inspiring with its massive dome and rich adornments, also housing the ornate Spielbank. Try your luck at the famed casino, where roulette, blackjack and poker are the primary games of choice, and visitors can tour or even take lessons. The adjacent Kurhaus Colonnade features a less formal gambling setting with 130 slot machines. The neighboring Hessisches Staatstheater (Hessian State Theater) was built between 1892-1894 by Fellner and Helmer, two Viennese architects. The magnificent and majestic foyer in Rococo style was added in 1902. The theater auditorium in the "Grosses Haus" is a revival of the Baroque style and has 1041 seats. And, of course, you can't leave Wiesbaden without experiencing the thermal baths as the Romans did. The Kaiser- Friedrich-Therme, erected in 1913, re-opened to the public in 1999 after extensive restorations. This historic thermal bath is heated by the Adlerquelle, a hot spring with a temperature of 66°C. It offers an Irish-Roman Bath, a fascinating contemporary sauna landscape, and a range of therapies using natural methods of treatment.

 
Day 2 - Rüdesheim, Sankt Goarshausen (near Loreley) & the Rhine

Today a train takes you from Wiesbaden to Rüdesheim, gate to the Mittelrheintal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The stunning valley measures around 65 kilometres in length, here the majestic Rhine Rivers breaches the Rheinische Schiefergebirge (schistose mountain). Along the Mittelrheintal are so many historic monuments and cultural landmarks as just about no where else in Europe. The vineyards towering high above the rapidly floating river are a sight to see. The train will then take you to the idyllic "wine- town" Sankt Goarshausen, which lies at the foot of the Loreley. Explore the mediaeval part of the picturesque Old Town, where two of the towns towers as well as parts of the original wall protecting the town are preserved.
After a short train ride you will reach the Historic Highlights City of Koblenz. Between the picturesque landscape of the Rhine and Mosel and surrounded by four low mountain ranges, is this more than 2000-year-old town known as the "Gateway to the Romantic Rhine," the ideal starting point into the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Koblenz's abundance of cultural monuments and historical buildings, the cozy little lanes and alleyways, and the relaxed and happy atmosphere of its squares and river promenades make Koblenz a charming town where its guests feel right at home. And it's a perfect base for exploration of the Rhine and Mosel Rivers that border the city. Start by exploring the narrow alleys and vibrant plazas of the Altstadt (Old Town), situated in the corner of town bordered by the Mosel to the north and Rhine to the east. A scenic walk that gives a sense of the breadth of this charming quarter is along the Mosel and Rhine promenades.
Stroll across the Balduin Bridge, first builtacross the Mosel starting in 1342. The view back to the Altstadt offers a unique view with the turretsof the Old Castle and the two pointed steeples of St. Florin's Church. The two rivers play a major role in the German mythos. The Rhine symbolizes strength and pride, while the Mosel is more nurturing. Just a short stroll upstream along the Rhine promenade, sculpted figures of "Father Rhine and Mother Mosel" lie caressing and affectionate on a bed of grapes. Behind them in stately counterpoint stands the sprawling neo-classical Elector's Palace, built in the late 1700s (closed to the public). Make your way to the Deutsches Eck - or German Corner - where the Rhine and Mosel meet. It's here that a giant copper statue of Kaiser Wilhelm I on horseback was erected in 1897, close to the spot where the Order of German Knights had its headquarters as early as 1216. The statue was destroyed by bombs in 1944. From 1953, the bare pedestal was known as the "Memorial to German Unity." After reunification, a copy of the statue was replaced in 1993. Today, flags of all German states wave proudly over the two rivers. Standing at the tip of the Corner, you can watch the sparkling waters of the Mosel swirl into the powerful Rhine. Across the Rhine stands the mighty Ehrenbreitstein Fortress, looming 388 feet above the river and reminding visitors of Koblenz's symbolic strength and historic significance. Today, the Fortress houses a memorial to the German army, a youth hostel, the Regional Museum and a restaurant with excellent regional food.
Built on the occasion of the German Wine Exhibition in 1925, the Wine Village is situated on the Rhine banks (in the Empress- Augusta-Gardens). It has been a destination for connoisseurs of good wine and regional specialties for nearly 75 years. The complex includes a genuine vineyard and half-timbered houses from some of the most famous German wine-growing areas. Sit inside for a relaxing view out onto the river, or enjoy the romantic ambiance of sharing a glass of wine on the outdoor trellised courtyard. There are myriad other attractions to enjoy in Koblenz aside from rivers and wine, though. The art museums alone could keep some guests captivated for a week. The Mother Beethoven House displays the world's largest private Beethoven exhibition. It was in the former home that the composer's mother, Maria Magdelena, was born in 1746. It also now houses documents and letters of cultural figures of the period. A building rich with history, St. Castor´s Basilica was at one time the favorite church of the Carolingian emperors. In this Romanesque building (consecrated in 836), the Verdun compact on the division of the first German Empire was prepared in 843. The church's fountain reminds us of Napoleon's rise and fall, and its cryptic inscription is one of history's great curiosities. Much of the city was demolished during World War II and was rebuilt with care, and the Deutsche Kaiser Building stands as a monument to the pre-war history of this city. An early 16th century "residential tower" with battlements, it was the only building to survive the war in its area of the Altstadt.
Your hotel is located close to the main train station.

   
  Day 3 - Day Trip to Trier

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The train will take you from Koblenz to Trier. This trip will make you feel like you've been transported far back in time. As Germany's oldest city, it began as a metropolis of the Roman Empire and enjoyed prosperous medieval and Renaissance eras as well. Today the city's glorious history can be witnessed at every step on a stroll through the bustling Old Quarter. It's also the starting point for forays into the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer region, including travel down the meandering Mosel River to its confluence with the Rhine. Trier is considered the cradle of German wine culture, a tradition begun by the Romans when they established the still-active Mosel vineyards. There is a Wine Teaching Path that winds through Trier's vineyard-dotted surrounds to the village of Olewig, where local vintners offer tours of their wineries and wine cellars, tastings and light food. The Mosel River itself was key to the development of this culture of wine as the spine of the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer region. The river changes direction often as it flows northeast toward the Rhine that it meanders nearly 150 miles, twice the distance as the crow flies. Together with its two small tributaries, the Saar and the Ruwer, the Mosel composes one geographical entity. Although each river's vineyard area produces a wine with its own distinctive personality, the three share a family resemblance: a fragrance reminiscent of spring blossoms, a pale color, light body and a refreshing, fruity acidity. To add to their charm, they often have the slightest hint of effervescence. Most display their finest charms in youth; the late- and selectively- harvested wines merit aging. Along the serpentine route of the Mosel, the river banks rise so sharply that the vineyards carpeting these slopes are among the steepest in the world, with some planted at an astounding 70-degree gradient. On these precipitous inclines, nearly all labor must be done by hand. That includes tying each vine to its own eightfoot wooden stake, and carrying up the slate soil that has washed down with the winter rains. All this is possible now because of the initial efforts of those Romans so long ago. Beyond wine production, it turns out that they were also rather skilled at building monumental cities. Founded in 16 B.C. under Emperor Augustus, Trier expanded as an imperial residence and capital of the Western Roman Empire. To serve its emperors and a growing population, the Romans built a city of such unprecedented proportions that it was known as Roma Secunda. The ancient city's most famous relic is the Porta Nigra, the beautifully-preserved fortified gate from the great age when the city was known as Augusta Treverorum. Today Trier contains the largest collection of ancient Roman buildings outside of Rome itself, all concentrated in a centralized and pedestrian-friendly area. Visitors can gaze in wonder at the size and majesty of the Basilika, used in the early 4th century by Emperor Constantine as an audience hall and throne room, and housing the largest unsupported room of antiquity. They can explore the expansive ruins of the Imperial Baths, remodeled during the 4th century as a barracks for more than 1,000 soldiers. And in the Amphitheater, they can sit in the same terraced seats occupied by fans cheering for gladiator and animal fights some 2,000 years ago. Be sure to visit the Rheinisches Landesmuseum, an outstanding archaeological museum with Germany's most extensive Roman collection. While the stunning ancient architecture is the city's strongest draw, travelers should also take in buildings like the baroque St. Paulin's Church and the Church of our Lady, Germany's oldest Gothic church. Behind the medieval façades of the Cathedral, architectural styles from the 4th through 18th centuries can be seen. Trier's expansive Electoral Palace, built as a "wing" to the Basilika, is considered one of the finest examples of Rococo style in Germany, and its Baroque Palace Gardens are a peaceful green oasis in the middle of the city. Another popular attraction is the Karl Marx Haus birthplace and museum. Perhaps one of Trier's most charming areas is its former Cathedral City, a mostly intact medieval district. A warren of narrow alleys runs between medieval houses in this former city-within-a-city.

 
Day 4 - Koblenz/ Frankfurt Airport for departure

Take a train ride from Koblenz to Frankfurt Airport. Or continue your tour from Koblenz main train station.

 

Book This Tour

INCLUDED

  • Airport Transfers

  • 3 nights accommodation

  • All train transportation in first class

  • Sightseeing at leisure

  • Tour package with valuable information, maps and brochures

  • Some entrance fees

4 days / 3 nights independent tour

€299 per person - based on double occupancy


Alternatively:

AVIS rental car instead of 1st class train travel:

€299 per person - based on double occupancy

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