Castle trip down the Rhine

Oct 20th, 2003, 03:04 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 8
Castle trip down the Rhine

My friend is coming to visit and she is dying to take a boat trip down the Rhine to see all of the castles. Can anyone give me any information? I would love to pick a boat up around Koln.

kimberle888 is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 03:19 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 82
I'm sure there are Germany specialists here, who'll give you the specifics, but here are the basics. The boat company is called KD (Koln-Dusseldorffer or something of the sort), and it docks in most Rhine towns. I'm not sure you can even get onto the boat in Koln (where would you go to do that?), but by far the best and most plentiful castles are on the stretch from Bingen to Koblenz, and Koblenz is an easy train ride from Koln. It's a very enjoyable day-trip, if the weather is good. You'll want a good guidebook to make sense of the castles--there is such an abundance of them that it takes at least a few trips to remember which one is which. There are numbers on the riverbanks, referring to the castles, so you'll want a guidebook, which lists those numbers and their corresponding castles. Be sure to get off the boat and visit at least one of the castles (my favorite Rhine castle is Marksburg) and/or at least one of the Rhine towns. Better yet, start or end your trip in one of the towns.

By the way, if your friend happens to have a railpass, the KD boat is free.
sansdieu is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 04:58 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 8
Thanks for the reply! I checked and the KD tours only run through the 6th of Oct.

Any other tours past that date?
kimberle888 is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 05:38 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,228
The shoulder season (nebensaison) tours run through 10/27 according to the K-D website:

There is also a winter schedule for 10/28 on:

The stretch between Koblenz and Bingen is the real "Rhine Gorge", much nicer than the Köln - Koblenz run in terms of scenery.

Of course, the best way to tour castles is to get OFF the boat and walk through one, and the best one on the Rhine is Marksburg Castle in Braubach - never destroyed, wonderfully rustic, and open nearly all year (short break at Christmas.) Trains run north and south along both sides of the Rhine between Koblenz and Bingen; St. Goar has a ferry for easiest crossing (no bridges between Koblenz and Bingen.)
Russ is offline  
Oct 20th, 2003, 09:45 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 447
Just a quick warning, the trains on the west side (with St. Goar & Bacharach) will be extremely limited (I think no through trains at all) until the end of November due to construction. (I wonder if maybe the boats will be more frequent because of it?) Unfortunately, I think this is the nicer side of the river. At least you could still use the (much slower) boats to get around. I would suggest going via train from Cologne to at least Koblenz as it will be much faster (and, as other have said, the northern reaches of the Rhine are less interesting.)

Enjoy your trip,
sanschag is offline  

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