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Blue Water Holidays - ABTA - ATOL - CLIA
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+44 1756 706500
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Exploring the Rhine on board Oscar Wilde

Thurs 16 Nov 2017

Our Cruising Specialist, Ann, recently enjoyed a no-fly cruise along the River Rhine on Riviera Travel’s stunning new ship, Oscar Wilde. Read her exclusive review:

I boarded the Eurostar from St Pancras to Paris Gare du Nord. This was my first experience of the Eurostar and I found it really relaxing and a great way to start the holiday.

On arrival in Paris, I transferred to Paris Gare du Lyon to board the TGV to Basel. The benefit of travelling by TGV was that I got to see some of the beautiful French countryside. From Basel, I was taken to the ship, the magnificent Oscar Wilde, one of Riviera Travel’s new ships.

Oscar Wilde definitely didn’t disappoint. I was extremely impressed as I checked in and couldn’t wait to get to my cabin on the Upper Deck. My luggage was already waiting for me which was a lovely touch. My cabin was light and airy thanks to a French Balcony, and was decorated beautifully. I had tea and coffee making facilities in the cabin which is unusual on river cruises but included with Riviera Travel. There was plenty of wardrobe space and shelving plus a safe. The bathroom had a large walk in shower and a selection of Crabtree and Evelyn Jojoba Oil toiletries.

I met up with my fellow travellers in the bar and lounge area and had a quick drink before going to dinner. Although drinks were not included in the cost of the holiday, a glass of wine was only 2.50 euro, very reasonable! Riviera Travel don't include the drinks, as the advantage of a river cruise is mooring in the heart of towns and cities, so guests like to enjoy getting off the ship whilst docked. Dinner was four courses with each course being just as delicious as the last.

Breakfast the following day was buffet style with a fantastic choice of hot and cold options. Later, I travelled by coach to Lucerne where I enjoyed exploring at leisure, before continuing to Wilderswil for a ride on the cog-wheel mountain train to the top of the Schynige Platt. The views of the Bernese Oberland mountain range were stunning.

As the ship set sail for Breisach that evening, I was amazed at how quiet and smooth the sailing was. We passed through a number of locks but unless you looked out of the window, you wouldn’t have known all this activity was taking place!

Travel by Eurostar from St Pancras Brand new ship Oscar Wilde Stylish cabin on Oscar Wilde Modern bar on Oscar Wilde Enjoy stunning views from the Sun Deck Fantastic choice at the buffet Picturesque scenery on the Rhine Magnificent architecture in Lucerne Breathtaking Bernese Oberland mountain range Bernese Oberland scenery Bernese Oberland scenery Colourful town of Breisach The beautiful shores of Lake Titisee Enchanting Strasbourg Stunning architecture in Strasbourg

I dined in the modern Bistro located at the rear of the ship, which had a maximum of 30 covers and needed to be pre-booked. I’d recommend dining here once or twice during a cruise as it is a brilliant experience but the menu is quite limited. The Bistro was also open at lunchtime and served burgers, pizzas, sandwiches and salads.

Picturesque Breisach in the Black Forest was the next port of call on my relaxing cruise. There was the option to explore at leisure or stay on board the ship. After a little walk around the town, I chose to try out the small plunge pool on the sun deck!

After a delicious buffet lunch in the restaurant, I boarded a coach through the stunning Black Forest to Titisee. The leaves were turning and the sun was shining which made the journey through the Black Forest one to be remembered. The small town of Titisee led down to the lake shore where you could have a coffee or a piece of the famous Black Forest Gateaux.

The following day, I travelled to enchanting Strasbourg for a guided tour through the charming Petite France area to the cathedral. This area had old timbered houses with pretty window boxes which reflected in to the canals. All too soon it was time to take the coach back to the railway station to board the TGV to Paris Gare du l’Est. On arrival in Paris, I transferred across to Paris Gare du Nord, only a short 10 minute walk. The return Eurostar journey to St Pancras was just as enjoyable and relaxing as the outbound journey.

I arrived back home and reflected on an amazing cruise, and one which I would definitely recommend to others!

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