The Rhine River

The Rhine River

Once Upon
a River

The Fairytale Fantasy of the Rhine

Suite, safe and sound cruising along the timeless rivers of the world has understandably become one of the most desirable ways to travel today. Yet with so many alluring waterways, it can be difficult to choose where to make your splash. Do you choose by country? By sights? By unique experiences? When you choose the romantic Rhine River – with its 800 miles of winding whimsical wonder – you choose all of the above.

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Why Travelers Pine for the Rhine.

Meandering through storied scenery including hillside castles, craggy cliffs, terraced vineyards and the medieval towns of five countries, the Rhine River weaves together a tapestry of history and culture (not to mention countless UNESCO World Heritage Sites), making it the perfect cure for cabin fever and feast for travel cravings.

Gifting you a sail through time and tales, this fabled waterway is as fitting for first-time river cruisers as it is for seasoned, off-the-beaten-path travelers. With one-of-a-kind sightseeing and second-to-none panoramic views, Avalon offers a Rhine River cruise you can bank on.

The second-longest river in Central and Western Europe, the Rhine flows nearly 800 miles from the white-dusted peaks of the Swiss Alps to the rainbow-hued blossoms of the Netherlands. Offering sweeping views of five countries, an array of cultures and flavors, plus a rich history that dates back to the Holy Roman Empire, this river was once considered the boundary of the “civilized world.” The Rhine is much more than the river of princes, poets and painters – it’s the river of adventure seekers. Here are just a few of the reasons passionate travelers find the Rhine so divine.


Cruising down the multinational waterway of the Rhine with Avalon, you can traverse five countries– Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany, France and Austria – exploring picture-perfect towns of bucket-list destinations like Basel, Strasbourg, Cologne, Bonn, Düsseldorf, Amsterdam and Rotterdam along the way.

Rhine Moselle meeting

The Rhine River is a ribbon that ties together fascinating countries, cultures and history. It also flows into other legendary waterways, presenting the opportunity to combine a Rhine itinerary with three other renowned rivers – the Moselle, the Main and the Danube – for a more robust river cruise.

Castle on the Rhine

Between Rudesheim and Koblenz, more castles take center stage than anywhere else on the planet. This fairytale fantasy known as the Upper Middle Rhine or Rhine Gorge has earned UNESCO World Heritage Site status and the well-earned moniker, “The Romantic Rhine.”

A Pop of Color

Surrounded by brilliant-colored tulips, the waterways of the Netherlands feed into the Rhine River, presenting unrivaled springtime scenery including the beginning, middle and end of the rainbow.

More to Pour Over

While many people think of Germany for its "brewtiful" beer scene, the vineyard-lined Rhine River Valley paints a sweeter story with "grape" days that invite you to sniff, swirl and sip your way through everything from Rieslings and delicate Silvaners to full-bodied Spätburgunders.


A delightfully dizzying number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites can be found along the Rhine River Valley, including the Rhine Gorge, the Cologne Cathedral, the Speyer Cathedral, the Town of Bamberg and the Old Town of Regensburg.

Merry Memories

There’s no better way to unwrap the magic of the Old World than with a journey through the tradition-rich, German Christmas markets with their mulled wines, handmade sweets and hardy holiday décor on a festive wintry river cruise.

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Romancing the Rhine: Who’s Right for this River?

First Timers

International newbies (a “fling”)

Whether it’s your first-time river cruising or even your first time abroad, the Rhine is one of our favorite river experiences. It not only winds, bends and meanders through several, must-see countries, it takes travelers to the storybook settings of fabled, fairytale lands – often on week-long or even shorter itineraries.

Perfect Pick: A Taste of the Rhine

Bookended by two bucket-list cities – Amsterdam and Frankfurt – this short and “suite” sailing adventure gives travelers the opportunity to test the river cruise waters while enjoying the sweeping, dramatic views of the Rhine Gorge.

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For a week-long vacation, choose the Romantic Rhine.

Savvy Sightseers

Seasoned sightseers (an “affair”)

One river. Five countries. The Rhine River not only weaves together diverse countries, cultures and cuisines, it also connects to other legendary waterways to create an in-depth, well-rounded river cruise vacation.

Perfect pick: The Rhine & Moselle – Canals, Vineyards & Castles

Combining the romance and Rieslings of the Rhine with the untouched, storybook settings of the Moselle, this cruise drifts through time, traditions and three fabulous countries.

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Been There Done That

Returning Revelers (a “commitment”)

Anchored in picturesque ports, Avalon takes travelers off-the-beaten path to discover – and re-discover – the Old World in new ways. Returning visitors to the Rhine will never repeat the same vacation with Avalon.

Perfect pick: Active & Discovery on the Rhine

Explore the Rhine River your way with a varied selection of classic, active and discovery excursions. From history to food and nature to art, our breadth of excursions includes everything from a regional wine-tasting in Eltville and hike up to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress to a Düsseldorf biking tour and Dutch painting class.

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For an in-depth adventure, consider the 16-day Magnificent Rivers of Europe or Enchanted Europe itineraries.

Set Your Sights Higher.

Between Rudesheim and Koblenz along the magnificent Rhine Gorge, more castles reach toward the sky than anywhere else on the planet – a towering castle appearing an average of every two-and-a-half kilometers. Along the way, you’re invited to step across centuries’-old drawbridges and into storybook settings to experience the majestic and magical days of yore. Yet with Avalon, it’s not just about the views – it’s about the “to dos!” Here are a few of the formidable fortresses you can experience up close when you set sail with Avalon:

Sail & See.

Through the widest windows in river cruising, these are just a few of the divine sights of the Rhine that you’ll see – and savor – with Avalon Waterways.

Dock & Do.

While the Rhine conjures up fairytale fantasies of the Old World, Avalon invites you to enjoy new, memorable experiences with immersive sightseeing and active discoveries in every port.

The Rhine Redefined

Just as the Rhine is the only waterway to feature dozens of castles in as many miles, Avalon Waterways is the only river cruise operator that invites you to customize your Rhine River experience with dozens of choices.

More itineraries

With 20 cruise itineraries in our Rhine vacation portfolio, Avalon Waterways offers more ways to discover the Rhine River Valley, year-round, than any other river cruise line.

Greater flexibility

Our Rhine itineraries range from 5 to 16 days, offering travelers a wide selection of vacations to suit a variety of needs and schedules.

More itineraries

With 20 cruise itineraries in our Rhine vacation portfolio, Avalon Waterways offers more ways to discover the Rhine River Valley, year-round, than any other river cruise line.

More views

No other river cruise company provides travelers an entire fleet of Suite Ships featuring one-of-a-kind Panorama Suites, Open-Air Balconies, and beds that face the Rhine views on two full decks.

Greater affordability

Only Avalon Waterways provides Rhine river cruise vacations priced from $1,499!*

More immersion

Avalon Waterways is the only river cruise company that offers Active & Discovery cruises, a collection of itineraries with a selection of more active and culturally immersive experiences.

More time

With YourWay cruising, Avalon Waterways is also the only river cruise company that invites travelers to seamlessly add time in European cities – with included sightseeing and transfers – before and after each cruising vacation.

More customization

Our exclusive Avalon Choice® excursion menu offers vacation personalization with a varied selection of Classic, Active and Discovery sightseeing options. An Avalon Adventure Host is also on-hand for on-your-own activities and adventures.

More Peace-of-Mind

Our travel bookings automatically come with a Peace of Mind Travel Plan, free of charge. This plan gives you flexibility to move your booking to another destination, vacation or brand, if needed, before final payment.

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