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Published on :   28/02/2020

The hidden treasures of the Rhine 



Between Alsace and Germany, our Rhine cruises - and their excursions - travel through regions with a rich historical, cultural and gastronomic heritage and allow you to discover unsuspected treasures. We have selected some of them for you, for the pleasure of all the senses. Welcome on board!




- A trip to Switzerland on board the Glacier Express -


 It takes eight hours to travel from St. Moritz to Zermatt, at an average speed of 35 km/h. But this panoramic train, which spans 291 bridges, passes through 91 tunnels and climbs more than 2,000 metres to the Oberalp Pass, is made to take its time. The Glacier Express is an original way to visit Switzerland and offers a breathtaking view of the grandiose scenery of its mountains. An extraordinary experience, a vertiginous and intoxicating adventure. You won't be bored for a single second! High peaks and peaceful lakes, vast pastures and dense forests, narrow gorges and majestic glaciers: the wonders, sculpted by the colossal forces of nature, parade one after the other past the wide windows of the train, which rise up to the roof, for a pleasure of 360°, or almost. Multilingual audioguides and a catering service at the train station provide a pleasant accompaniment to this spectacular journey through the heart of the Swiss Alps.



- The great sight of the Rhine waterfalls -


A ridge stands in the midst of the bubbling waves, in the midst of the roar of the bodies of water, to take the visitor - without the slightest danger - as close as possible to this impressive spectacle of nature. He will then feel deep inside him the fury of the elements, the foam on his skin, and the rumbling will make his whole body shudder. Emotions guaranteed! Located in Switzerland, near Schaffhausen, the Rhine Falls ("Rheinfall"), formed about 15,000 years ago, are the most powerful waterfalls on the continent. Here, the river falls from a height of 23 metres (over 150 metres wide) and its flow can exceed a thousand cubic meters per second! The Laufen Castle Road and the Wörth Castle Road offer two breathtaking views of the falls, which can also be reached by boat. And if you're visiting the Rhine Gorge with your family, take a short detour to the Historama (a very well thought-out interactive exhibition) or the Adventure Park, one of Europe's most famous rope climbing parks. 



- The beautiful Heidelberg, gem of the Romantic Rhine -

 

Heidelberg is a romantic city surrounded by forested hills on the banks of the Neckar, a tributary of the Rhine. It has inspired many writers, poets and musicians who have been captivated by the natural beauty of the area. "The city, with its location and its entire region, has something ideal about it," Goethe said two centuries ago. Here is Germany's oldest university, more than 600 years old, and the city abounds in historical and cultural riches. Heidelberg Castle with its red sandstone walls offers a breathtaking view of the Rhine valley from the "Dicker Turm" ("thick tower"). A visit to Heidelberg is also possible on enchanting walks. Along the Philosophers' Path, between cypress and broom, as the city's scholars once did; in the shade of the Karl-Theodor Bridge (nicknamed "Alte Brücke", the Old Bridge), where lovers attach their symbolic padlocks; or in the cobbled lanes of the old town or on Hauptstrasse, the main shopping street. An unmissable detour for any Rhine cruise.



- An enchanting walk between vineyards and castles -

 

A cruise on the Rhine, allows you to discover superb landscapes and historic cities, but also a rich terroir and regions whose wine and castles have notably contributed to their world renown. In Alsace, the famous Wine Route has become a real institution. It meanders over 170 km and passes through 70 wine-growing villages, each as charming as the next, which, through folklore events, popular festivals or tastings, know how to exalt their formidable heritage all year round. The birthplace of seven eminent grape varieties (Sylvaner, Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Muscat, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Noir) and of the unmissable grands crus known for their finesse and elegance, it is a true symphony of the senses. In Germany, the Romans from ancient times, then Charlemagne, developed the culture of the vine and the wines of the country, particularly the whites, are of exceptional quality, such as the one from the sunny slopes of the Boddigerberg, a divine nectar that Beethoven adored. The castles of the Rhine valley are another treasure trove. Between Rüdesheim and Koblenz in particular (where there are 28 castles over 70 km!), sometimes restored and converted, sometimes in ruins, they watch the river flow at their feet, immobile sentinels witnessing centuries of history. On the French side, they are just as imposing and numerous. And the most famous of them all, the splendid Haut-Koenigsbourg castle, perched on a rocky promontory of pink sandstone, offers a breathtaking panorama of the Alsace plain.



Mainz, Twenty Centuries of History and Legends

 

A major city of Roman antiquity founded in 12 B.C., it radiated into the province before becoming in the Middle Ages the seat of the Holy Roman Empire, then a French department under Napoleon I and the capital of a Land in post-war Germany. Its two thousand years of history have given it a rich heritage, and a visit to Mainz is the promise of great discoveries. The thousand-year-old cathedral dominates the medieval old town with its winding streets and charming bistros where you can taste the excellent wine of the Rhine valley. Mainz also offers a wide range of churches and museums, the best known of which is the World Printing Museum, which houses the Bible of Gutenberg, the city's most illustrious figure. Finally, going up the Rhine towards Koblenz, you can admire a rock that became famous thanks to the legend of the Lorelei. Put into music and poetry, it tells that from this place, a young girl named Lorelei attracted by her song imprudent sailors and capsized their boat. Passengers on CroisiEurope cruises on the Rhine can rest assured: the Lorelei is only a myth, she doesn't exist!



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