2023 Rhine River Pilgrimage Cruise

2023 Rhine River Pilgrimage Cruise

Cost

Flights from NYC (+$200 from DFW)

Mozart Deck (Suite) – $6,995

Mozart Deck (Stateroom) – $6,395

Strauss Deck (Stateroom) – $6,095

Strauss Deck (Stateroom, Solo) – $7,795

Haydn Deck (Cabin) – $5,895

Haydn Deck (Cabin, Solo) – $7,595

Optional Switzerland Pre-Tour – $1,495

Optional Pre-Tour (Solo) – $1,885

Cash prices quoted per person, based on double occupancy.  Solo price is for single cabins.  For Credit card payment, add 3%

Final payment due February 22, 2023.

Dates

May 23 – June 2, 2023

Optional Pre-Tour May 20 – May 23, 2023

NOTE: Mass for our group will be celebrated daily by our pilgrimage chaplains in some of the most amazing sites along the Rhine!

RIVER OF TRADITION,

FORTRESSES OF FAITH

 

An 11-day Pilgrimage Cruise


This unique pilgrimage begins in the majestic setting of the Swiss Alps and concludes with an enchanting cruise down the Rhine River through France, Germany and Holland. Our pilgrimage themes?
– Finding God in the beauty of His creation
– How the Catholic Church built Western civilization
– and How the greatest fortresses of Europe have been its saints, many of whom spent much of their lives along the Rhine: Sts. Ambrose, Athanasius, Jerome, Constantine & Helen, Edith Stein, Hildegaard of Bingen, Boniface, Albert the Great and others.

Our voyage on the Rhine, one of the most historic rivers in the world, we’ll explore how the Catholic Tradition is like a river of living water, flowing from Christ in the apostles to us and carrying us forward into new adventures.  As we sail along, we’ll also be admiring the many picturesque castles that dot the shoreline of the Rhine and visiting some of the most impressive of European abbeys. So don’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity to experience mountains, saints, castles, and cathedrals, quaint towns and delectable food, all aboard a ship that will be entirely reserved for us. And yes, our Eucharist each day will be celebrated in some of the most stunning churches of Europe.

And don’t miss out on the optional pre-tour prelude – four glorious days and three nights in one of the most quaint and beautiful cities of Europe, Lucerne. situated on a crystal-clear Alpine lake with snow-capped peaks in the distance.  We will make our way to the top of one of those peaks in a cog railway and visit historic abbeys and churches during this pre-tour, before meeting the main group of pilgrims for the Rhine Cruise.

Locations

 


Your Guide

 


Dr. Marcellino D’Ambrosio and his wife, Susan

Known on Catholic radio and TV as “Dr. Italy,” Dr. D’Ambrosio is a NY Times best-selling author and a renowned commentator on Catholic issues, appearing as a guest on national news and a variety of Catholic radio networks such as Relevant Radio, EWTN, and the Sirius Catholic channel. He’s hosted an EWTN series on the Early Church Fathers for nearly 20 years, and has partnered with Ascension Press on immensely popular book & video study series, including the Jesus: The Way the Truth and the Life study series. A doctoral student of the renowned Jesuit theologian Avery Cardinal Dulles, Marcellino is an expert on the history of the Church in Europe and has a special familiarity with the shrines we will be visiting on this unique pilgrimage. Dr. Italy will be our principal guide, providing expert commentary on the saints, sites, and shrines of our Rhine River journey through Switzerland, France, Germany and Holland.

Trip Itinerary

 


DAY 1, Tuesday, May 23: DEPART USA

Depart from your hometown via JFK or Newark airport on an overnight flight to Zurich. Dinner and breakfast will be provided by the air carrier during the international flight. Business-class and premium economy upgrades and add-on airfare is available from most major cities upon request.

DAY 2, Wednesday, May 24: ZURICH

We arrive in Zurich this morning and are greeted by our guides. Board the motorcoaches for a drive into the city where we celebrate Mass. We have a city tour and a boat ride down the Limmat River under the bridges. Visit the Fraumunster Church to see the incredible Chagall stained glass windows. Welcome dinner is at the hotel tonight. Overnight Zurich area.

DAY 3, Thursday, May 25: ZURICH - RAPPERSWIL - ST. GALLEN

After breakfast, we meet our tour manager and board the coach for a full-day excursion to visit Rapperswil Medieval Town where we can stroll along the restored wooden walkway by Lake Zurich, part of the pilgrimage route of the Camino to Santiago de Compostela. After lunch on your own, we visit St. Gallen Abbey and Library, the oldest in Europe a UNESCO, World Heritage Site. Mass will be celebrated. We return to Zurich for dinner at leisure with an opportunity to try the local bratwurst with beer, a favorite food of the locals. Overnight Zurich. (B)

DAY 4, Friday, May 26: SWITZERLAND - EINSIEDELN MARIAN SHRINE - BASEL - EMBARKATION FOR THE RHINE RIVER CRUISE

We travel through Switzerland to the Einsiedeln Marian Shrine. Explore the magnificent Monastery with its elaborately decorated pastel ceilings, marble side altars, and a large high altar. The most important part of the Basilica is the Lady Chapel, which is reminiscent of Christ’s tomb in Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Above the chapel’s altar is the Black Madonna, resplendent in rich robes and surrounded by gold clouds. We visit the Monastery and celebrate Mass here. Following lunch at leisure, we drive to Basel to embark on our privately chartered river cruise on the beautiful Amadeus Queen ship. After tea and sandwiches, settle into our cabins. The ship sails at 5:00 PM. Enjoy a welcome drink and orientation meeting in the lounge before dinner. Overnight on the cruise. (B.D.)

DAY 5, Saturday, May 27: FRANCE - STRASBOURG

This morning, we arrive in the dynamic capital of Alsace. Following breakfast, we board our coaches for a short drive to the city. This ancient city’s sights include the famous Strasbourg Münster and the Petite France Quarter, a former mill and tanner district that still maintains its medieval charm. We visit the beautiful Cathedral of Our Lady, which is the home to the world’s first documented Christmas Tree. The city of Strasbourg is the self-described ‘Capital City of Christmas,’ as the Strasbourg Christmas Market is the oldest and largest in France. Following a boat ride on the city canals, enjoy lunch on your own in Strasbourg. We meet at the Cathedral to celebrate Mass before returning to the ship. Enjoy dinner, followed by music in the ship’s lounge. Overnight on the cruise. (B.D.) Approximate arrival 9:00am- departure 11:00PM.

DAY 6, Sunday, May 28: GERMANY - SPEYER - HEIDELBERG - MANNHEIM

We visit the Speyer Cathedral, the burial place of German kings before we board the bus for a tour, including a visit to the beautiful Maulbronn Abbey, which is now a UNESCO Heritage Site. The 850-year-old Romanesque monastery complex, surrounded by turreted walls and a tower gate, is one of the best-preserved examples of its kind in Europe. Following our tour, we move on to Heidelberg, a romantic city considered one of the most beautiful in Germany, nestled between the Neckar river and the foothills of the Odenwald forest. We celebrate Mass in the magnificent Jesuitenkirche, built-in 1712 by the Jesuits. In the afternoon, enjoy exploring Heidelberg’s key sites, including the majestic castle, bridges, and scenic “Philosopher’s Walk.” Lunch is on your own. Return to the ship for dinner and overnight. (B.D.) Speyer at 7:00AM – 12:00. Back to the ship for lunch 12- 2PM. Heidelberg 2PM- 7PM

DAY 7, Monday, May 29: GERMANY - RÜDESHEIM - ST. HILDEGARD - KOBLENZSCHOENSTATT MOVEMENT

After breakfast, we visit the Benedictine Abbey of St. Hildegard, where we enjoy a guided tour, celebrate Mass, and visit the shrine of St. Hildegard of Bingen. Hildegard was called “a light for her peoples and her time” by Pope John Paul II and was later made a Doctor of the Church by Pope Benedict in 2012. The Abbey, located on a hill above Rudesheim, has a magnificent view of the Middle Rhine Valley. Set amidst scenic vineyards, the Abbey is home to a community of nuns who continue to live by the rules of Saint Benedict, dedicating themselves to prayer and work. You may choose to walk from the town to the Abbey or take the bus. Rüdesheim am Rhein is one of Germany’s most prolific and scenic wine regions. It offers beautiful hikes through its mountains and prime views over the dazzling Rhine river valley. Explore this lovely city on your own before we return to the ship for lunch. After lunch, enjoy the magnificent scenery as we travel to Koblenz. Upon disembarkation, we board our buses to travel to the nearby village of Schoenstatt Vallendar, the town that belongs to Our Lady. We visit the Original Shrine that gave origin to the Schoenstatt Movement and the Church of the Most Holy Trinity (Adoration Church) with the tomb of Father Kentenich nearby. We then drive a short distance to the 2000-year-old city of Koblenz, ideally situated at the confluence of the Rhine and the Moselle rivers. Koblenz is a small, walkable city where you may wish to explore St. Castor Basilica, the Church of Our Beloved Lady, and other major sites on your own. Dinner and overnight are on the ship. (B.L.D.) Rudesheim 7:00AM-12:00PM Koblenz 2:30PM-6:00AM

DAY 8, Tuesday, May 30: GERMANY - MORNING RETREAT - WINE TASTING - COCHEM

This morning, our host Dr. Marcellino D’Ambrosio will lead a retreat on the ship. Following our retreat, we enjoy lunch, taking in the scenery as we sail down the Rhine. We disembark in Cochem, where we celebrate Mass at the Church of St. Martin Cochem. Before returning to our ship, we stop at a local winery for a wine tasting. Dinner and overnight on the ship. (B.L.D.) Cochem 1:30PM- 6:00PM

DAY 9, Wednesday, May 31: GERMANY - COLOGNE - ST. EDITH STEIN

Early this morning, we arrive in Cologne, a 2000-year-old city, spanning the Rhine River and the region’s cultural hub. Here, we have a guided tour of the Cathedral and Treasury. The immense Cathedral is the most visited tourist attraction in Germany. Amazingly, although much of the city was destroyed around it during World War II, and the Cathedral itself was hit by fourteen bombs, it emerged mostly unscathed. St. Edith Stein studied Catholicm in Cologne and converted on Jan 1, 1922 at St. Martin’s Church. She was beatified on May 1, 1987 in Cologne, by Pope St John Paul II and canonized by him in 1998 at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. We will hear the story of St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross and her journey as she left Cologne for Echt, Holland. We also see the Church of St. Andrew and the tomb of St. Albertus Magnus. We celebrate Mass and have time at leisure to explore Cologne. Tonight, we enjoy the Captain’s Gala Dinner and entertainment aboard the ship. Overnight on the ship. (B.L.D.) Cologne 7:00AM- 2:30PM

DAY 10, Thursday, June 1: HOLLAND - AMSTERDAM

Early this morning, we arrive in Cologne, a 2000-year-old city, spanning the Rhine River and the region’s cultural hub. Here, we have a guided tour of the Cathedral and Treasury. The immense Cathedral is the most visited tourist attraction in Germany. Amazingly, although much of the city was destroyed around it during World War II, and the Cathedral itself was hit by fourteen bombs, it emerged mostly unscathed. St. Edith Stein studied Catholicm in Cologne and converted on Jan 1, 1922 at St. Martin’s Church. She was beatified on May 1, 1987 in Cologne, by Pope St John Paul II and canonized by him in 1998 at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. We will hear the story of St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross and her journey as she left Cologne for Echt, Holland. We also see the Church of St. Andrew and the tomb of St. Albertus Magnus. We celebrate Mass and have time at leisure to explore Cologne. Tonight, we enjoy the Captain’s Gala Dinner and entertainment aboard the ship. Overnight on the ship. (B.L.D.) Cologne 7:00AM- 2:30PM

DAY 11, Friday, June 2: AMSTERDAM DISEMBARKATION - RETURN TO USA

Early this morning we are transferred to the airport for our flight home. (B.)

Optional Pre-Tour to Switzerland

 


DAY 1, Saturday, May 20: DEPART USA

We depart on an overnight flight to Zurich. Dinner and breakfast will be provided by the air carrier during the international flight. Business-class and premium economy upgrades and add-on airfare is available from most major cities upon request.

DAY 2, Sunday, May 21: ZURICH - LUCERNE

Upon arrival meet your English Speaking tour manager, board the motorcoach for a drive to Lucerne considered one of the most beautiful cities in Switzerland. En route, we stop at Muri Abbey for a visit and to celebrate Mass. After lunch, we stop in Solothurn to visit Saint Ursus Cathedral. Settle into our hotel in Lucerne for dinner and overnight. (D)

DAY 3, Monday, May 22: LUCERNE - MT. TITLIS

We are heading for an excursion by coach to Engelberg Abbey and then by cable car to the top of Mount Titlis, considered one of Switzerland’s top destinations. Mass is celebrated at Engelberg Abbey and we have time to explore the lovely little Swiss town. We return to Lucerne for a walking city tour. Tonight we enjoy a typical Swiss dinner with a show in a local restaurant. Overnight in Lucerne. (B. Special dinner)

DAY 4, Tuesday, May 23: LUCERNE - JUNGFRAUJOCH

Discover Europe’s highest train station on this full-day train tour to Jungfraujoch. We admire the Bernese Oberland on your way to Lauterbrunnen, where we complete our Alpine ascent by cogwheel train. On arrival, we take time to marvel at the UNESCO-listed landscape and explore summit attractions, such as the Ice Palace and Sphinx Observatory where you can coak up the panoramic views over Aletsch Glacier, Europe’s longest glacier. Mass will be celebrated. Return to Lucerne for dinner at leisure. (B.)

DAY 5, Wednesday, May 24: LUCERNE - ZURICH

After breakfast at the hotel we take the scenic Gotthard Panorama Express boat on Lake Lucerne before we transfer to Zurich to meet up with the rest of our group and join the participants of the Shrines of Switzerland and the Rhine River Cruise pilgrimage.

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