Day 1: ARRIVE IN FRANKFURT, GERMANY. TRANSFER TO WIESBADEN (EMBARKATION).
Welcome to Frankfurt, Germany's financial capital! This afternoon, transfer by motorcoach to Wiesbaden, where the AVALON FELICITY is docked. After a mandatory safety exercise, meet your friendly crew and fellow travellers at a WELCOME RECEPTION. (NOTE: Flights into Frankfurt must arrive before 3 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.) (D)
Day 2: MANNHEIM.
Lies at the confluence of the Rhine and Neckar Rivers, Mannheim is Baden-Wurttemberg's second-largest city after Stuttgart. This morning, an excursion takes you to Heidelberg, home to Germany's oldest university, which was founded in 1386. Visit the ruins of HEIDELBERG CASTLE, towering magnificently over the city and among the most important Renaissance structures north of the Alps. You'll also see the famed GREAT VAT, the "World's Largest Wine Barrel." At nearly 7 metres high and 8.5 metres wide (23 feet high and 28 feet wide), the cask holds over 219,554-litres (58,000-gallons) of wine and has a dance floor built on top of it! Arrive in Karlsruhe tonight and join an optional excursion to the famous Baden-Baden casino. When night falls in Baden-Baden, the Kurhaus with its elegant casino reveals its best side: radiant and full of life. At the casino, 'rien ne va plus' (no more bets) only applies to gambling. Otherwise, the sky's the limit here. (B,L,D)
Day 3: MAINZ-RUDESHEIM.
Join your local guide for a WALKING TOUR in Mainz this morning. Opposite the cathedral in the heart of the old part of the town lies the GUTENBERG MUSEUM, Mainz is home of Johannes Gutenberg - the inventor of the movable type writer press and significant individual in the last millennium. This afternoon, dock in pretty Rudesheim, a typical Rhine Valley wine town. Visit SIEGFRIED'S MECHANICAL MUSICAL INSTRUMENT MUSEUM to see and hear a large collection of self-playing calliopes and music boxes from the 18th to the early 20th centuries, and enjoy a SPECIAL TREAT. (B,L,D)
Day 4: KOBLENZ.
Be prepared for a day of gorgeous scenery! This morning, marvel at today's scenic highlight as you cruise through the dramatic RHINE GORGE, the most beautiful stretch of river. Here, ancient castles stand sentry on lofty cliffs rising 122 metres (400 feet) above the water. Cruise past the legendary rock of the Lorelei, where echs of enchanted siren song lured unwitting sailors to their doom. Then, arrive at the place where the Rhine and Moselle Rivers meet - the Deutsches Eck (German Corner) with its impressive statue of German Emperor William I. Join your Local Guide for a WALKING TOUR of 2,000-year-old Koblenz, which reveals an eventful past through its castles, fortress walls, towers, squares, and monuments. Alternatively, visit nearby SAYN MANOR HOUSE - the 12th century family castle of the counts of Sayn and Sayn-Wittgenstein. (B,L,D)
Day 5: COLOGNE.
One of Germany's largest cities and capital of the Rhineland, Cologne straddles both sides of the Rhine, and is known for its soaring, twin-steepled gothic cathedral. Join your local guide for a GUIDED CITY WALK this morning. Later, during free time, perhaps check out the Romano-Germanic Museum, home to a large collection of artifacts from the Roman settlement on which modern Cologne is built - a must for history buffs! The Old Town abounds with cafes, shops, and taverns. Be sure to try a Kolsch pale lager, locally brewed in Cologne for over a hundred years, and shop for a bottle of "4711", the original eau de cologne. (B,L,D)
Day 6: LELYSTAD, NETHERLANDS.
Situated in the centre of Netherlands, Lelystad is a municipality and the capital city of Flevoland. Choose between a Batavia ship visit or enjoy a unique shopping experience at the famous Batavia Stad Amsterdam Fashion Outlet. The original Batavia was built on the Peperwerf in Amsterdam in 1628 at the behest of the Dutch East India Company (VOC). It was a returning ship, specially designed to make the long journey to and from the East Indies. Batavia Stad Amsterdam Fashion Outlet was the first fashion outlet centre in the Netherlands, named after the ship Batavia from 1628. This charming, reconstructed 17th century shopping village offers more than 250 sophisticated fashion brands with savings from 30% up to a massive 70%. (B,L,D)
Day 7: AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND.
Welcome to Amsterdam! Holland's sophisticated, modern capital has a rich and fascinating history. This delightful 700-year-old city with its elegant and classic architecture, cafes, and restaurants has a distinct ambiance. There is no better way to see Amsterdam than by CANAL BOAT, cruising through the elegant grachten lined with stately homes dating back to Amsterdam's "Golden Age". Perhaps you would like to join an optional biking tour through the Dutch country side or join an optional excursion to Zaanse Schans and discover Dutch crafts, windmills and other scenic sites along the landscape; or opt to join a culinary walk and taste your way around town with a foodie insider! After dinner, there is free time to experience Amsterdam's wild nightlife while the city is kept illuminated by romantic street lights. (B,L,D)
Day 8: AMSTERDAM (DISEMBARKATION).
Your holiday ends with breakfast this morning. (B)