Sailing from Netherlands
Setting sail from Amsterdam
Amsterdam is one of our very favourite cities to visit, as well as also being a perfect base to explore the nearby landscape of windmills and dikes. The Amsterdam canal belt is now officially recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site, and from them there are so many neighbourhoods to explore, such as the Jordaan with its higgledy-piggledy streets and its famed garden courtyards (hofjes). There are also a wealth of famous museums and galleries to choose from, such as the Van Gogh Museum, the Rijksmuseum and the Anne Frank House, not to mention some more, shall we say, quirky options.
Explore by water, or by bicycle to get a feel for the city – a hop on hop off canal boat, or rented bike or pedalo will do the trick.
Antwerp is a city bound up with the arts, once home to the likes of Rubens and Van Dyck, and more recently carving out a reputation as the fashion capital of Belgium. It’s also a magnet for shopaholics, with designer boutiques and jewellers galore.
Cologne is a wonderfully warm and welcoming city, its skyline dominated by one of the most beautiful Gothic cathedrals in Europe. You will likely spend most of your time in the attractive Altstadt (Old Town), home to beer halls aplenty and some fascinating museums.
Koblenz was founded by the Romans, who valued the city’s strategically important location where the Rhine and Moselle rivers meet. Rebuilt from the rubble of the Second World War, modern Koblenz has a pleasant and relaxed atmosphere, and serves as a gateway to the Romantic Rhine.
The pretty little town of Rüdesheim, situated on a bend in the Rhine surrounded by vineyards, is a popular destination for travellers looking for a slice of quintessentially German village life. The Drosselgasse, a narrow cobbled lane flanked by old timber frame buildings, is particularly atmospheric.
The Rhine and Main rivers meet at Mainz, a friendly university town with a charming cobbled old town and an impressive cathedral. The city was also the home of the first ever printing press, a heritage that you can explore at the fascinating Gutenberg Museum.
Hugging the river Rhine to the south of Frankfurt, the pleasant little town of Speyer has a long and distinguished history. This was one of the Holy Roman Empire’s most important cities, as evidenced by the beautiful Romanesque cathedral, and is also home to a delightful Christmas market during the winter months.
Breisach is a small town on the western fringe of the Black Forest, separated from the French region of Alsace by a bend in the river Rhine. This proximity to France is reflected in a vibrant food and wine scene, and architectural highlights include the hilltop St Stephen's cathedral.
Basel lies where Switzerland, France and Germany meet, a sophisticated and multicultural city with a picturesque setting astride the river Rhine. The medieval Old Town is exceptionally well preserved, best appreciated from the summit of the hilltop cathedral, which offers incredible views across the city.
Scenic river cruising
Arriving in Frankfurt
Frankfurt is the financial heart of Germany, a forest of silver skyscrapers that's home to both the German and European Central Banks. This focus on commerce has led some to dismiss the city as a dull, soulless sort of place, but in fact Frankfurt buzzes with a real cultural vibrancy; don't miss the Städel Museum, home to works by the likes of Picasso and Rembrandt, or the excellent MMK Museum of Modern Art. Frankfurt is also great fun after dark, and we recommend sampling the lively restaurants and Apfelwein bars of Sachsenhausen.
If you’re into art and funky style, schedule a couple of days here. Otherwise, don't...
Your home from home
The intimate Crystal Mahler and Crystal Bach launch in 2017, with sister ships Crystal Debussy and Crystal Ravel to follow in 2018. Each has a welcoming range of lounges and facilities, whilst staterooms are spacious and beautifully decorated.
What we love
The Crystal River Yacht difference is all in the pace of life - slowed down itineraries, plenty of overnights in port, and leisurely hours on board to make the most of the captivating scenery. Add to that the highest crew to passenger ratio on any European river cruise vessel, with crew trained to Crystal's usual high standards, and you have a winner.
|Crew||85 Crystal-trained European Staff|
|Style||A relaxed pace with specially curated shore excursions, and Crystal's usual high standards on board.|
Tailor-make your trip
Two nights in Amsterdam
There is a fantastic range of canal front hotels to choose from, but we love the new Waldorf Astoria.
Visit windmills in Zaanse Schans, the flowers at Keukenhof, or the cheese market in Alkmaar.
Extend your stay in Frankfurt
We think that the historic Villa Kennedy is an interesting place to stay.
Excursions from Frankfurt
Go and take the waters at Bad Homburg.