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travlsolo2 Oct 1st, 2012 04:51 PM

Amsterdam to Basel or Basel to Amsterdam?
We're considering a Uniworld Rhine river cruise next there anything that we should be aware of when deciding in which direction to travel?
Also,any comments about August versus September or June?

Aleta Oct 5th, 2012 10:17 AM

We just returned from a Uniworld cruise on Rhine and Moselle Rivers, which is a 12 night trip. The Rhine trip is 8 nights, I believe. I don't really think it matters much which direction you take the trip, except for the time you'll send at the cities on both ends. If you have lots you want to do, then make sure you book hotel for a night or 2 pre or post cruise to enjoy those sites, because you may not see much in Basel and Amsterdam on the boat tours.
For example, we finished in Amsterdam, and though the brochure talks of a museum visit arranged before it opens to other visitors, it was a misprint as we were not scheduled to arrive in Amsterdam until after lunch. We started the cruise in Basel. There was a museum I wanted to see in Basel, and it worked out well to drop off the bags at the ship, have a quick lunch, then take a cab to and from the museum. The boat wasn't leaving until after dinner but guests were expected to be onboard by 6 pm. The taxi was very expensive, but we enjoyed being in town for about 3 hours.
We started the cruise on the 15th of September. For the first week, it was actually 10 degrees warmer than the forecasted normal 66 degree highs, then we got cooler weather. Personally, I would recommend going in early September. I don't like Europe in August because Europeans in very large numbers vacation that month and places are crowded.
It was our first river cruise, though we've cruised many times on larger ships. The excellent service and attention are unbeatable and the food was excellent. We were on the River Queen, which is a bit older, but well re-furbished and nicely decorated. The Marie Antoinette is newer and much larger, and the sliding glass doors in the rooms do open.

kfusto Oct 5th, 2012 12:20 PM

I personally would avoid June and especially August as those are two of the busiest on the rivers. September will have better weather (IMO) and will be a bit less busy.

We prefer to cruise in the fall for value, better prices on flights and cruises, and far fewer crowds.

We always book a few nights on our won pre and post. We were unimpressed with Amsterdam but were happy that we stayed and spent time there; just would not return.

We will be in Basel in December for the Christmas markets and are looking forward to a new destination.

travlsolo2 Oct 8th, 2012 03:04 PM

Thank you both for your good advice. We are actually planning on the 12-day Rhine and Mosel cruise, so I'm glad to hear the River Queen is nice. This will be our first cruise, but I've been in Europe several times, so I'm the one who gets to do the planning for before and after. Aleta, did you fly into Basel or Zurich and out of Amsterdam? The friends who are going with us want to go somewhere by train, so I've been thinking about into Amsterdam and out of Frankfurt...There is a Sept. 9 cruise from Amsterdam to Basel; that might work out best....lots to think about. I do love the planning phase. :)

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