Our guide helped us to explore the city including the Old Town with its beautiful squares and historical monuments. There was free time to shop for handicrafts or visit a local market before returning to the ship. The Emerald Waterways package includes entry to the Cathedral (Kölner Dom).
That’s the official description, but entry to the Dom is free anyway.
10:00 – Cruise director Daniela gave us a presentation on Germany and the Germans, which covered many interesting facts. It was followed by a short lesson on common German phrases we might need – but nearly all young Germans speak excellent English.
12:30 – We docked in Cologne.
13:30 – We were split into six groups for a walking tour, as a guide cannot have more than 30 people. We used portable receivers with an earpiece to listen to the guide. After walking past some old and interesting houses, the first interesting stop was an excavation of some old Jewish homes.
We went to the Rathaus and were shown a model of the city and given some facts about its growth plans.
We were left near the Cathedral around 3 pm and we had three hours to look around on our own. The entry to the Cathedral is free. I drank some Kölsch beer, the local specialty and bought the obligatory bottle of 4711 cologne as a gift.
18:45 – Our cruise director gave us a briefing on the day ahead. We were told that the ship does not actually dock at Koblenz, but there is a lot to see from the sun deck from 6:30 onwards.
Day by day
- Days -1 to -3 – Paris Extension
- Day 1 & 2 – Amsterdam
- Day 3 – Cologne
- Day 4 – Rhine Gorge – Rudesheim
- Day 5 – Miltenberg – Wertheim
- Day 6 – Wurzburg – Rothenburg
- Day 7 – Bamberg
- Day 8 – Nuremberg
- Day 9 – Kelheim – Regensburg
- Day 10 – Passau – Salzburg – Linz
- Day 11 – Melk – Durnstein
- Day 12 – Vienna
- Day 13 – Bratislava
- Day 14 – Budapest
- Day 15 – Disembarkation