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Combining the Art of Photography and Adventure Travel

Christmas Markets River Cruise Photo Tour - December 9th to 17, 2025

Amsterdam, Netherlands to Basel, Switzerland Christmas Markets River Cruise

Experience the deep-rooted holiday traditions of Europe at its most festive time of year and get caught up in the magic of the holidays with visits to some of the world’s most timeless Christmas Markets. Warm up with a mug of steamy glühwein while at the Cologne Christmas Market located in front of its UNESCO-designated Gothic cathedral. Let the "Capital of Noël," Strasbourg, the oldest and largest Christmas Market in France, captivate you the way it has for so many others for centuries.

Meander through Heidelberg’s majestic Christmas Market nestled idyllically amongst the historic squares of the Old Town. And while in Gengenbach, marvel at the world’s largest Advent calendar, where every evening at 6:00 PM, the brightly lit windows of the neo-classical town hall open and behind each one is a picture by a famous artist, such as Andy Warhol. Cherish all the glory of the season in grand European style as you cruise along the Rhine.

Countries Visted: France, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland

River Sailing: Rhrine

We look forward to you joing us on Christmas Markets Photography Tour.

 

Markets Registration Contact Us Terms & Conditions Privacy

 

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Christmas Markets Photo Tour Itinerary - December 9th to 17th, 2025

Day One: Tuesday, December 9th, 2025  Mid day coach departure offered from London Airport and requested locations along the 401 corridore to Pearson Terminal 1 in Toronto. Toronto and area guests will meet at Pearson International. We are via Air Canada to Amsterdam. Our overnight flight departs at 7:05 p.m. arriving in Amsterdam at 8:05 a.m. the following morning.

Day Two: Wednesday, December 10th, 2025 Our flight arrives at 8:05 a.m. and after clearing customs and immigration, we will be met by driver guide who will assist with luggage as we transfer to our motor coach and travel to the pier to meet our River Cruise ship. Amsterdam, Netherlands – Emarkation-  Board the ship in Amsterdam for our Christmas Markets on the Rhine cruise. (D)

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Day Three:  Thursday, December 11th, 2025 Amsterdam - There are 165 canals in Amsterdam, during our first day onboard we will get to enjoy some of them with many photo opportunities as we begin our canal cruise. With the dock at Prins Hendrikkade 25 and the canal boats decorated for the season our travels will begin. The canal houses along the city's major canals: Herengracht, Keizersgracht and Prinsengracht. As the Dutch often keep their curtains open and love to decorate their homes for the festive season, you will be able to enjoy not just the city's sights and Christmas decorations but also those of the people who live in the city. Late in the day, we will set sail out of Amsterdam.(B,L,D)

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Day Four: Friday, December 12th, 2025 - Dusseldorf, Germany - Our day begins as we cruise into Düsseldorf. In the afternoon, take a brief trip to the nearby city of Cologne on a guided tour of its enchanting Old Town, where you will see sites such as the Cologne Rathaus, Germany’s oldest town hall; the Fishmarkt, which dates back to the 12th century and the Great St. Martin Church. Then visit one of Europe’s largest and most renowned Christmas Markets. Or explore historic Düsseldorf on foot with a knowledgeable local tour guide. Then, be treated to a tasting of Altbier, a clean and crisp beer developed in Düsseldorf that is crafted using traditional brewing techniques. Conclude the tour with a visit to the local Christmas Market.  (B,L,D)

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Day Five:  Saturday, December 13th, 2025 -  Rhine Gorge - Rudesheim - Cruise through the castle-laden Rhine River Gorge before reaching the winemaking town of Rüdesheim. Once in Rüdesheim, we will have four choices of morning excursions. Wine connoisseurs will want to go to a wine cellar for a wine tasting followed by a Christmas Market visit to enjoy holiday traditions from around the world. Or go on a hike through the vineyards. Extra time can also be spent visiting the Christmas Market. Later in the day, we will visit Siegfried’s Mechanical Instrument Cabinet, and have a chance to photograph and taste one of the town’s special delights, Rüdesheimer coffee. (B,L,D)

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Day Six: Sunday, December 14th, 2025  - Ludwigshafen - We will have the choice to explore two of Germany’s historically rich cities, along with their festive Christmas Markets. Visit Heidelberg, a city that will capture your heart with its mighty castle and historic university. While here, wander along one of Europe’s longest pedestrian shopping streets, the Hauptstrasse, soaking up the Yuletide celebrations at the town’s Christmas Markets. Or hike along the Neckar River on the historic Philosopher’s Path followed by free time to enjoy the Christmas Markets. Alternatively, explore one of Germany’s oldest cities, Speyer, known for the largest Romanesque cathedral in Europe—a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We will also have time to visit its Christmas Market in front of the “Old Mint” (Alten Münze) in the famous Maximilianstrasse, with a view of the romantic Imperial cathedral (Kaiserdom). (B,L,D)

Day Seven: Monday, December 15th, 2025 - Strasbourg, France - Strasbourg is even more alluring during the season of Advent. The Christkindelsmärik dates back to 1570, making it the oldest Christmas Market in France. Enjoy a panoramic bus tour that takes you past the Parc de l’Orangerie, the European Parliament and the Place de la Republique. Afterwards, walk through the historic town center on the Grande Île, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and through the lovely “La Petite France” district, where we will see the Cathédrale de Nôtre Dame with its famous astronomical clock and then visit the town’s famous Christmas Market. Later in the day, a visit to Gengenbach’s Christmas Markets and the town’s famous illuminated town hall Advent calendar. Another great day along the Rhine. (B,L,D)

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Day Eight: Tuesday, December 16th, 2025 - Breisachm Germany - Breisach is our gateway to several different excursions. Journey into medieval Colmar, located in the enchanting Alsace region of France. Delight in the half-timbered houses lining the cobblestone streets as you take in the whimsical blend of French and German culture and the town’s wonderful Christmas Markets. Alternatively, head to Freiburg, founded in 1120 and home to the Freiburg’s Münster, a Gothic cathedral said to have “the most beautiful spire on earth.” Then enjoy free time at the Freiburg Christmas Markets. (B,L,D)

Day Nine: Wednesday, December 17th, 2025 - Basel, Switzerland - Our Disembarkation Point - We have now reached the end of our Christmas Markets River Cruise. After breakfast we will have time to say farewell to the ships crew, disembark, and see a little of Basel before preparing for our return flight to Canada. Our flight departs at 2:15 p.m. arriving in Toronto at 7:10 p.m. After clearning customs say goodby to GTA and connecting guests and board our motor coach for our return to London and drop off points en route. We should arrive in London at approximatly 10:00 p.m. (B)

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SPACIOUS STATEROOMS

  • 7 nights luxury accommodation in an outside stateroom (most with twin balconies)
  • Entertainment-On-Demand in all staterooms featuring free high-speed internet access, movies, a music library and English language TV stations
  • Mini-fridge, desk and sitting area
  • Bottled water replenished daily

AN ARRAY OF AMENITIES

  • Wellness Activities with a dedicated Wellness Host leading various exercise classes as well as discussions on healthy eating and relaxation techniques, both on board and on shore.
  • Personalized service from a highly trained Cruise Manager during both cruise and land packages
  • Internet and Wi-Fi access
  • Sun Deck pool with swim-up bar and walking track
  • Fitness room, massage services and hair salon
  • Main Lounge with panoramic views and bar
  • Daily entertainment including cultural performances

AWARD-WINNING DINING

  • All onboard dining in a variety of venues
  • Regionally inspired cuisine made with locally sourced ingredients
  • The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant
  • Welcome Cocktail, Welcome Dinner, La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Dinner, Captain's Cocktail and Gala Dinner
  • La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs exclusive dining experience
  • Unlimited fine wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Unlimited sparkling wine and fresh juice with breakfast
  • Sip & Sail Cocktail Hour with complimentary wine, beer, spirits and soft drinks
  • Tapas, sandwiches, snacks and refreshments served daily in the Main Lounge

A WORLD OF EXPLORATION

  • Immersive tours in every destination
  • Gentle, regular, active and late-riser tour options
  • Bike tours and hikes
  • Special interest tours
  • Knowledgeable guides
  • Personal headset for easy exploration

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Along the Rhrine in December - The weather is generally cooler, with temperatures in 5 - 10 c or 40's f. However, the region comes alive with festive holiday markets, such as the famous Christkindlmarkt in Cologne. Additionally, many of the river's attractions, such as the Heidelberg Castle and the Lorelei Rock, are less crowded during this time of year.

Pre-tour Information Night:  As with all our photo tours, we will hold a photo information night approximately three weeks prior to departure. We will present the final itinerary, travel suggestions, what gear to pack, and hand out all related travel documents. The pre-tour presentation is designed to give our photographers all the information needed for our trek. This also allows a chance for you to meet your fellow travellers, and host. 

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Markets Registration  Contact Us  Terms & Conditions  Privacy Policy

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The cost of our Christmas Markets Photo Tour Departing from Toronto is $7,550.00 per person CAD based on double occupancy including airfare departing from Pearson International Toronto, plus air tax of $394.00 CAD, $305 CAD port fees plus HST $12.74. 

A non-refundable deposit of $650.00 CAD is due at the time of booking and final payment 90 days prior to departure September 9th, 2025.

Upgrades available onboard: based on double occupancy for the follow rate - please choose during registration.

Category C - $1,455.00     Category BB - $2,245.00     Category AB - $2,775.00     Category AA - $3,035.00

You may also choose to pay over 12 monthy payments through our Uplift finance program estimate -  $885 per month. You select 12 month payment option under the payment section during registration.

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Includes:

- Round trip coach for departures from London and points along the 401 corridor to Pearson Airport

- Round Trip Airfare via Air Canada, departing from Toronto other departure locations available upon request

- 7 Day Rhine River Cruise Onboard Ama Waterways AmaCerto Amsterdam, Netherlands to Basel, Switzerland

- All airport and hotel transfers

- Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner during our cruise

- English speaking guides

- Private Services

- Photo Workshops as we travel

- Tour hosted and escorted by photographer James Cowie

Excludes:

- Items of a personal nature, laundry, phone calls, etc.

- Local guide tips and gratuities

** Schedule may vary according to weather or traffic

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James Cowie Photo Tour Trekkers / Tourcan Vacations        Katherine Hirtzel Photo Tour Trekkers / Tourcan Vacations
1-800-263-2995 ext 2688 or 416-391-0334 ext 2688                 1-800-263-2995 ext 2683 or 416-391-0334 ext 2683
or by email james(at)tourcanvacations.com                                   or by email katherineh(at)tourcanvacations.com