Tips on River Cruising Down the Rhine & Mosel
Some of you may know, I owned a travel agency for 20 years so I feel it’s important to talk about traveling to these beautiful wine regions I write about. There is much more to wine than just tasting it. Visiting the region and or country is an experience outside the bottle. Not only will you taste more of the regions wines, but enjoy the food, get a taste of the culture, and take in the scenery.
Since we just finished up with German Rieslings from the Mosel region, I thought I’d begin there. Traveling down the Rhine and Mosel Rivers is breathtaking. You visit small towns, medieval villages, the vineyards, the castles. There are opportunities to take advantage of wine tasting, biking, sightseeing or just relaxing.
Most of the cruise begin in one port and end in a different port. Take advantage of pre and post stays. Cruises are from 7 days to 19 days depending on itinerary. Most meals are included but might vary depending on cruise line and the port schedule. Depending on the cruise line, excursions are included in the price of the cruise.
Here are some of the cruise lines to check out for your river cruise. Please note, I am not endorsing these lines, they have some great itineraries for this type of travel.
A few tips on traveling:
- Best rates are in the spring and fall.
- Don’t forget the cruises during the Christmas Markets in December.
- Always purchase travel insurance.
- Make sure your passport expiration date is at least a year out.
- Bring binoculars to view sites on the riverbanks up close while cruising.
- Pack good walking shoes.
If you find yourself in Germany they have some wonderful wine festivals throughout the year. These are just a brief listing of some of the festivals. For a full listing visit http://www.germany.travel/en/index.html
- Ahr Wine Market in Ahrweiler in June. Taste over 200 wines and sekt from the Ahr region in the Ahrweiler market square. The festival culminates with the coronation of the new Ahr wine queen.
- Rudesheim Wine Festival(The Riesling Festival)This happens the third weekend in August. Taste rieslings and pinot noir frm the vineyards of the Rheingau.
- Rheingau Wine Festival in August- This is a 10 day wine festival where you will be able to taste over 100 wines from Rheingau riesling and sekt and regional foods.
- Middle Moselle Wine Festival end of August beginning of September. This is the biggest wine festival in for the Middle Moselle region. There is a vintners’ parade, floats, marching bands and fireworks. Taste rieslings from over 30 wineries.
- The Durkhein Wurstmarkt Wine Festival in September. This is the world’s largest wine festival according to the website. It began as a market for farmers and winegrowers in the 15th century. It has now grown to a large festival highlighting 85km of German wines found on the German Wine Route. Over 300 wines and sparkling wines poured during this nine day festival.