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viking Rhine river cruise shore excusions question

viking Rhine river cruise shore excusions question

Old Mar 30th, 2018, 09:12 AM
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viking Rhine river cruise shore excusions question

My wife and I are booked on a July 24th departure from Basel to Amsterdam and need to make some decisions regarding optional shore excursions along the way. Also, an option is to extend the cruise on the front end with two days in Lucerne. We have never been to Switzerland and thus have no information on whether Lucerne is worth seeing.

If anyone has taken this Rhine Cruise, we would appreciate any feedback regarding any optional shore excursions anyone has taken. Is it feasible to skip the excursions along the way and just explore on your own or are the docking points too far from the sights one might want to see to do it this way?

Any feedback is appreciated for first time river cruisers. We have always on previous trips flown into France or Italy, rented a car and done our own thing so this will be something entirely different for us.
mxtennis1 is offline  
Old Mar 30th, 2018, 11:24 AM
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You posted in the right place -- but the cruise forum isn't as busy as the Europe board so you might also want to post there. If you do, You can tag the tread for Switzerland, Germany and Netherlands and include the actual ports of call so people can suggest excursions.
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Old Mar 30th, 2018, 01:14 PM
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If you have the opportunity to add Lucerne to your trip, then definitely do it. It's a very pleasant place to stay, lots to do around the town. Make a visit to Mt Rigi or Mt Pilatus - in both cases, it involves a ride across the lake then train to the top of the mountain and magnificent views across the countryside. Nice walks along the lake in town, big transport museum, the lion memorial, and the covered bridges across the river can give you plenty to do for a few days. Last time we stayed at Hotel des Alpes right on the river and in the middle of all the action.
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Old Mar 31st, 2018, 11:49 AM
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Lucerne is certainly worth visiting, historic and beautiful with a lakefront setting. It’s the first place we visited on our first trip to Switzerland.
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Old Mar 31st, 2018, 01:52 PM
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I should have added to my reply that we have done similar cruises along the Rhine. In every port we could either walk easily into the town or shuttle services were provided to take us into the centre. We usually decided to wander through town in a very leisurely way, sitting in the sun having a coffee and enjoying the ambience. If you visit Rudesheim, the musical museum is a great place to visit, very interesting.
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Old Apr 2nd, 2018, 04:10 AM
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Agree with marg on both her posts here. Lucerne makes a great trip extension (you can choose to do it either on your own or as part of the cruise). Also generally you can also go on your own into the towns along the way and explore as you like though for a few you may need to go with the ship's tour at least to get into town. The ship's tours for an additional cost are not worthwhile IMO unless they are designed to cover a special interest that you have--like the manufacture of cars or the making of cheese, etc.
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Old May 7th, 2018, 01:52 PM
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My husband and I traveled with Viking on the Rhine in December 2016 and didn't take many optional excursions. In fact we skipped the included excursion to the Black Forest from Breisach because it sounded too much like a shopping trip. We took the optional tour of Colmar in World War II but it did not visit Colmar at all. We didn't expect it to but want you to be aware. We toured the battlegrounds around Colmar and a small but interesting museum. Colmar is where Audie Murphy earned his Congressional Medal of Honor and it was a very enjoyable tour. I was sorry to miss Colmar but we were on one of the Christmas market cruises and I couldn't drag my husband to every Christmas market in every port.

We had booked this cruise very late so some optional tours had already filled up and did not appear on offer to us. We heard about a wonderful tour of the Cologne Cathedral that took visitors up to and on the roof--everyone on it raved about it. In Amsterdam we had an included walking tour and canal boat cruise then visited the Van Gogh museum on our own. The concierge on board booked tickets for us but at other times of the year it would be best to book this far in advance to avoid the line. You can do this on your own. We walked from the ship to the taxi stand at the train station nearby and took the taxi to the museum. The tram also stops at the station.
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