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River cruises in Germany are offered on five major rivers – the Rhine, Moselle, Main, Danube and Elbe. All of the rivers, except the Main, flow through at least one other country; and all rivers except the Elbe flow through the southern half of Germany.
A cruise on the Elbe is not combined with other rivers. Not so with the other four. An itinerary on the Moselle River is usually combined with at least the Rhine River. A cruise on the Rhine River might include some combination of the Moselle, Main or Danube Rivers. From west to east in Germany, the Rhine River meets the Main River; the Main River then joins the Danube River via the Main-Danube Canal.
In southwest Germany, the Moselle River borders France, Luxembourg and Switzerland. This part of Germany along the Moselle River, begins in Trier. There are several German cities along the Moselle before reaching the city of Koblenz – where the Rhine and Moselle Rivers are joined. A few of the cities you’ll pass along this stretch of land and water are Trier, Cochem, Bacharach, Bernkastel-Hues, Koblenz, Rudesheim and Bingen.
Trier is the most southern city in Germany on the Moselle River. It’s located near Luxembourg in the German Mosel Wine Region covering about 45 square miles. In addition to its natural beauty, Trier is known for being the oldest city in Germany and also for its historical monuments.
Bernkastel-Kues is located on a steep hillside that’s covered with vineyards. Known for its wine production, the town even has a wine museum.
Another popular site in Bernkastel-Kues is the Spitzhäuschen or the Pointed House, which was built in 1416. It’s visited and photographed by people from around the world.
Spitzhäuschen or the Pointed House
By Berthold Werner (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
The town of Cochem has over 100 cultural monuments! Of course it would take longer than a day to explore all these buildings, a day tour in this city might include a few and will also usually include a trip to the famous Reichsburg Castle.
The Reichsburg Castle in Cochem
By Holger Weinandt [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons
Koblenz is the third largest city in Rhineland with a population just over 100,000 covering an area of nearly 41 square miles. There are many historic structures to see, including the Fortress Ehrenbreitstein, the German Corner and some palaces and castles.
At the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers, the city of Koblenz also marks the westernmost point of the Upper Middle Rhine Valley. It’s situated on both banks of the Rhine River. The German Corner or Deutches Eck is the corner of Koblez where the Moselle and Rhine Rivers meet.
German Corner or Deutches Eck
By Holger Weinandt (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0-de (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons
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