The highlight of any European river cruise is getting off the ship and exploring the new destinations that you find yourself in every day. However, there will be plenty to please the eye on the river banks too, meaning that you won’t even have to leave the ship in order to enjoy some interesting and beautiful sights. Here are just a few things you are likely to find, regardless of which river you choose to sail.
Along rivers such as the Rhine and Danube, hilltop castles look down on you as they did on potential invaders in years gone by. From the rocky Schonbuhel Castle outside Melk to medieval Marksburg Castle near Koblenz, they offer a look into the past and you can get the best views from the deck of your ship. The Rhine, in particular, is littered with castles. They come thick and fast between Koblenz and Rudesheim, ensuring there is always something to look out for. If you are travelling through France, beautiful chateaux and resplendent palaces are usually seen in place of castles.
There’s no doubting that Europe is home to some of the best wine regions in the world and when sailing through these you can often see the vineyards on the river banks. From the port wine found in the magnificent Douro valley to the Rieslings along the Moselle and the full-bodied reds that are part and parcel of a Bordeaux river cruise, you can almost see the grapes ripening before your very eyes.
Your everyday bridge may not be the most interesting sight during your river cruise, but not all bridges were created equal. When you consider the fantastic Charles Bridge in Prague, the iconic Chain Bridge in Budapest and the many elegant bridges on the way into Paris along the Seine, there can be quite a commotion on board when sailing under certain structures. One bridge that always creates a positive atmosphere is that which greets you into Avignon. Don’t be surprised if a chorus of ‘Sur le Pont d’Avignon’ breaks out amongst the guests.
Rock and River Formations
There are a couple of really famous rock formations which you will sail right past during your European river cruise. The first of these is the Lorelei Rock, situated in the Rhine Gorge. The local legend states that a beautiful siren used to sit at the top of the rock, luring ship captains to their death with her song and beauty. The second iconic rock formation can be seen on Danube river cruises and is known as the rock sculpture of Decebalus. Depicting the last king of Dacia (Decebalus) and located close to the border between Romania and Serbia, it is the largest rock formation in Europe.
Sometimes it is even the river itself that provides an interesting sight during your holiday. Those sailing on a Saar River cruise may get the chance to sail through the Saar Loop, a breathtaking natural occurrence near Mettlach. The river almost bends back on itself, creating excellent photo opportunities.
If you would like to see any of the above on a European river cruise, we can find the best itinerary for you. Call our team today or get in touch using our online contact form.