While spending a few days in Cologne, we decided to take a cruise down the Rhine River. Having read many tour books, not having yet been a member of VT, we decided to depart from Cologne via train.
We took the train to Koblenz. What a blast! We were on the train with a large group of fans of the Fortuna Dusseldorf soccer team that were on there way to Mainz for a championship game. They had brought not only many fans and hundreds of cans of beer but also there own security force of police to help them get to the stadium in Mainz. A very nice group of folks many of who wanted to show their skill at English.
In Koblenz we took a local train down to St. Goar to board a daytime cruise ship. St. Goar is a delightful town and we walked along a few of the streets but not up to the castle. The cruise line we chose was KD which is covered under the Eurail Pass at no additional charge.
The cruise was truly a delight. The ship stops in all the towns along the Rhine including the most interesting ones to us which were Bacharach, Kaub, Oberwesel, Lorch, and Rüdesheim, Eltville, and Wiesbaden-Biebrich. So many interesting sites to see along the way and time for hundreds of pictures. Best enjoyed with a pint of beer sitting in the German sun.
The train station in Mainz is not too far from the river. We took the evening train back to Cologne for the night. This trip can be done in one day. However I recommend starting the day south of Koblenz and stopping in at least two of the towns along the way to explore the beauty of the Rhine countryside.
Fondest memory: in Koblenz it was the train station. Along the Rhine River trip from St. Goar to Mainz were the amazing castles and homes all along the river. Bacharach and Oberwesel were very pretty as was all the scenery up and down the river.
We plan to stay in the Castle Liebenstein during our visit and have been searching for information and photos of the area. There is a map of the river from Bonn through the Rhinegau to Mainz. It's an interactive map where you can see photos of each town, castle, and sight along the river; read history of the area; and see how many hotels are in each area.
If you don't speak German, use Google to translate selected pages, as they are written in German. www.rheintourist.de
Favorite thing: In Koblenz you can enter one of the cruise ships to go down the Rhine. Halfway between Koblenz and Mainz you come accross the most famous rock at the Rhine River, the Loreley. A lot of songs have been composed about this rock. It is said that at night, when the full moon shines, eleves dance on top of this 120 meters (400 feet) high rock. the word "Lore" comes from the old German word for dancing, and "Lei" from "rock". This might be the real origin of the name "Loreley".
The town of St Goar and the St Goar Castle on top of the hill...
Our cruise up the Rhine was great, we saw some gorgeous towns and seeing all the castles up on the hills was my favourite part!!
We didn't stop at many of the towns along the way but we will go again one day.
Favorite thing: Braubach is another town we came across while we were on the cruise on the way from Bacharach to Koblenz...
Favorite thing: A nice street in Rudesheim... I really loved Rudesheim because the streets were all cute and everything was very well looked after...
Favorite thing: Oberwesel is a town that we travelled past while on the way to Koblenz from Bacharach on the KD cruise down the Rhine River...
This is a view of St Goar from the KD cruise boat we were on...what a cute town... :)
We didn't get to stop there but maybe next time...
Favorite thing: I have been told this building is in Boppard and is called Bopparder Teehäusje... :) It's beautiful huh?!! I love the German buildings...
Fondest memory: A tourist boat cruising between the two river of 'Rein' and 'Mossel'. They have stopped in here in Koblenz.