Rhine and Mosel Wine Cruise hosted by Texas Winery – Messina Hof

Europeanbarging Presents a German Wine Cruise From November 7 – 14, 2023.

Mosel Riv

Europeanbarging, announced a SPECIAL DISCOUNT of $2500 per cabin on a Wine Cruise for its clients, slated for late fall, starting from November 7 to 14, 2023. Discounted rates start at $2249 per person.

The cruise, scheduled on the AMA Prima ship will be hosted by the owners of Messina Hof Winery – Paul and Merrill Bonarrigo, who will offer several tastings and discussions on their wines and winery, as well as wine making. A pairing of their wines will be offered with a special AmaWaterways gourmet meal. In addition to the many wine themed excursions, there are multiple included excursions offered in each port, including hiking and cycling tours. This will be the sixth wine cruise that Paul and Merrill have hosted with AmaWaterways.

From the Medieval towns of Nuremberg, Bamberg, Wurzburg and Wertheim, on the meandering Main to the UNESCO-designated Upper Middle Rhine Valley and Rhine Gorge with its multitude of castles dotting its shores to the vineyard-clad hills – flowing past the wine villages of Cochem, Zell and Trier on the Mosel, before ending the cruise in Luxembourg. Enjoy Europe at its most picturesque during this fall itinerary. Savor the many flavors of Germany with a chance to sample the world-famous wines of the Rheingau and the hearty smoked beer of Bamberg.

Messina Hof is the most awarded and renowned Texas wine in national and international competitions. In a community steeped in tradition, Messina Hof Winery & Resort holds its own with a 200-year history of award-winning wines. Although the winery itself was officially established with the first vintage release in 1983, the rich wine heritage of Winemaker Paul Bonarrigo dates back six generations to Messina, Sicily. Merrill Bonarrigo’s family originates from Hof, Germany. Together they have pioneered the Texas wine industry in creating premium wines of distinction and a landmark wine country destination.

There is an optional pre cruise land program to Prague, Czech Republic and a post cruise land program to Champagne France. There will also be a special pre cruise land program to Hof Germany offered – more details later.

Cruise rate includes all sightseeing, meals, wine with dinner, daily happy hour before dinner, free internet, use of bicycles on board. The special $1250 per person discount offer ends December 30, 2021. Port tax an additional $210 per person. Deposit of $400 per person due with booking, balance due 90 days before departure. Payment plan available.

Europeanbarging was founded in 1998 and specializes in European barge and river cruise products. Located in Texas, Europeanbarging is an ARC accredited company. AmaWaterways, the only cruise line that has the privileged of being inducted into La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, one of the world most prestigious culinary organizations and Tables et Auberges, leading the way in the cruise industry as one of the most innovative food and wine experiences both on-board and on-shore.

For more information contact Europeanbarging at: 888-869-7907 or http://www.europeanbarging.com

EUROPEANBARGING IS OFFERING 20% OFF FALL 2021 EUROPE RHINE AND MOSEL RIVER CRUISE

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Save 20% on a European Rhine, Neckar, Sarre and Mosel river cruise featuring the ports of Strasbourg, Heidelberg, Rudesheim, Cochem, Trier, Saarburg and Remich, departing Oct 5, 11 (R), and 17, 2021. Rates start at $1300 for a 7 day cruise.

Rate based on double occupancy and includes the cruise, all meals, beverage package of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, and Wi-Fi. The excursion package is additional but may be pre booked at a discount or individual excursions can be pre purchased.

“This Four River Cruise visits 4 countries and cruises by historic castles, charming villages and beautiful vineyards. Catch a view of the famous Lorelei as your cruise to Rudesheim; walk among the ruins of the famous Heidelberg Castle, visit the 4h century ruins of Trier – the oldest city in Germany; tour Cochem Castle.” Jan Baumgartner of Europeanbarging

 

Canal of Strasbourg

Strasbourg Canal

You will want to arrive a day early so you can experience the wonderful city of Strasburg with her Cathedral and Alsatian architecture and canals.

DAY 1: Strasbourg
You’ll board our ship at 6 p.m. After comfortably settling into your cabins, we’ll introduce our crew at a welcome cocktail reception. Our ship will cast off at 7:00 p.m. for Mannheim. Join us for an evening of entertainment.

Heidelberg Castle at Sunset

Heidelberg Castle

DAY 2: Mannheim – Heidelberg -Rudesheim
We’ll arrive in Mannheim early in the morning. This will be our starting point for the optional excursion to Heidelberg. Known as the most romantic city in Germany, it has inspired many painters and poets by its beauty. You will have the opportunity to visit the partially ruined, red sandstone castle that sits majestically above the city, overlooking the Neckar River. Up to the Thirty Years’ War, Heidelberg boasted one of the most notable ensembles of buildings in the Holy Roman Empire. While time has taken its toll, this castle’s fame lives on to this day. The giant wine barrel is one of the most popular attractions. There is also time to explore the historical town of Heidelberg.

The afternoon will be spent cruising along the Neckar and Rhine Rivers towards Rudesheim, where we’ll arrive in the evening. The famous Drosselgasse with its numerous cafes, bars, and music awaits you tonight!

Rudesheim Wine Tavern

DAY 3: Rudesheim – Cochem
This morning, join us for an optional guided tour of Rudesheim.
Featured in the optional guided tour is a tour of the local vineyards on a tourist train. Then, you will participate in a wine tasting in the historic rooms of the Bassenheimer Hof. Then head to Siegfried’s Mechanical Music Museum, located in a lovely, 15th-century building. This museum holds a collection of fascinating musical instruments ranging from tiny, delicate music boxes to an enormous orchestrion. This museum is really worth a visit. This is a cute town with lots of little wine tasting shops and souvenir shops. Several streets behind the main river front street are some streets with great gelato and more shops.

This afternoon, we’ll pass through the beautiful and romantic Rhine Valley. We will arrive in Cochem during the evening. Join us for an evening of entertainment.

DAY 4: Cochem – The Mosel Valley
This morning, Take part in our optional guided tour of Cochem Castle. There is a mini bus to take up to the castle or you can walk up – same for the return. The Imperial Castle sits on a mighty crag over the Mosel River. We’ll enjoy a guided tour of this magnificent building that dates back to 1000. After being destroyed by the French in the 17th century, it was rebuilt from scratch in a Neo-Gothic style by a local German businessman. There is time to explore this cute town.

We’ll spend the afternoon cruising to Trier.

Trier Porta Negra

Porta Negra in Trier

DAY 5: Trier – Saarburg – Remich
Arrive in Trier during the night. This morning, join us for an optional guided tour of Trier. Discover the Roman vestiges and heritage in Trier, the splendid view the city offers of the Mosel, and its magnificent landscape. Trier is known for its well-preserved Roman and medieval buildings, but it is also home to some impressive churches as well. We’ll have a look at the amphitheater, the imperial baths, the Roman basilica, and the Porta Nigra, one of the best-preserved Roman city gates. After our visit, you’ll have some free time to sight see on your own before heading back to the ship in Saarburg.

The afternoon will be spent cruising along the Sarre and the Mosel towards Remich. Join us for an evening of entertainment.

DAY 6: Remich – Luxembourg – Remich
This morning, join us for an optional visit to a winery complete with a tasting. Seven pioneering men of the region recognized the magic of the huge calcareous rock downstream from Remich. They cultivated the first vineyards now infamous for its sparkling wines. In 1919, in the aftermath of World War I, they set up the Caves St. Martin. You’ll discover the secrets to wine making while strolling through the underground passages that seem to go on for miles. After our tour, we’ll go to the historical center of Remich where you can enjoy some free time on your own. Also called the “Pearl of the Mosel,” this charming city is surrounded by an outstanding panorama of vineyards and forests. Take a stroll along the several miles of promenade in the shade of the trees along the Mosel or sit back on a cozy terrace for some more wine.

This afternoon, Join us for an optional guided tour of Luxembourg. Leave from Remich for Luxembourg by coach. Luxembourg is a real mix of styles and cultures. We’ll set out on a guided tour on foot to get a closer look at some of the sites, including the Place des Armes, Place de la Constitution, capital buildings, Corniche, old city, Grand Ducal Palace (exterior), and Place Guillaume II. After our tour, enjoy some free time before returning to the ship in Remich.

After our excursion, we’ll return on board our ship. Tonight is our festive gala evening.

DAY 7: Remich
Buffet breakfast on board. Disembark at 9:00 a.m

River cruises in Europe offers a great opportunity to see so much more of Europe than on your own and with a river cruise, most of your costs are includes – such as food, transportation, accommodations and touring. You travel with others that you can share this wonderful experience with and have staff that can assist in independent exploring if you want to go off on your own.

We have many cruise itineraries to offer on the many rivers of Europe – from 3 night to more than 14 nights. We have promotions throughout the year on various cruises – so check with us for the perfect cruise. 888-869-7907 jan@europeanbarging.com

Exploring Heidelberg and Her Castle

Heidelberg is a city located in southwestern Germany, along the canals of the Neckar River. It was first recognized in 1196. It was the capital city of the Rhenish Palatinate. Later, it became the place of residence of the electorate counts palatine up to 1720.

The city was devastated during the Thirty Years’ War in 1622. It was almost completely wiped out by the French in 1689 and 1693.

Heidelberg is a university town. Its 2016 census revealed that it has a population of 159,914, with roughly a quarter of that figure are students.

It is the fifth-largest city in Baden-Wurttemberg.

The oldest university in Germany and one of Europe’s most reputable universities is in this city, the Heidelberg University, which was founded in 1386. The university played a leading role in the era of humanism and Reformation.

The city’s library is the oldest existing public library in Germany, it was established in 1421. A few months after announcing his Ninety-five Theses, Martin Luther came to Heidelberg to defend them, that was in April of 1518.

During World War II, the city was the stronghold of the Nazi party. Between 1933 and 1945 was known as the Nazi period.

In 1934-1935 the State Labor Service and students at Heidelberg University built the Thingstätte Amphitheater in the northern part of the town. This amphitheater was where Nazi Party events were held. After just a few months, the sprawling Ehrenfiedhof Memorial Cemetery was opened, which completed the last project of the Nazi Party in the city. It was in the southern part of the old town.

German troops left the city on March 29, 1945, after destroying the old bridge, the city’s valued river crossing. Allied forces penetrated the town the next day and the civilian population voluntarily surrendered.

It was said that the city was not targeted by Allied bombing raids because the U.S. Army wanted to use it as a post-war garrison.

The city is known as the scientific hub in Germany as there are some internationally renowned research labs near Heidelberg University, including Max Planck Institutes and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory.

For centuries it has been an art hub, especially literature. The UNESCO Creative Cities Network even awarded it as a “City of Literature”.

The city is a favorite tourist destination because of its popular romantic cityscape, including The Philosopher’s Walk, the old Baroque town, and the Heidelberg Castle.

 

Heidelberg Castle at Sunset

Heidelberg Castle

The Heidelberg Castle

The popular landmark, Heidelberg Castle ruins are among the most important Renaissance buildings located north of the Alps. it was demolished in the 17th and 18th centuries and has only been rebuilt partially. The castle is a towering figure from the Konigstuhl hillside. Visitors can go there via the Heidelberger Bergbahn funicular railway which runs from Kornmarkt all the way to the summit of the Kongistuhl.

The earliest castle structure was built before 1214. A second structure was built in 1294. In 1537, though, a lightning bolt struck and destroyed the upper castle.

The present structures were improved in 1650, unfortunately, wars and fires destroyed these structures. Portions were rebuilt but another lightning bolt struck in 1764.

You can visit Heidelberg and her castle from most Rhine River Cruises.  We offer from 4 – 15 day cruises.  Checkout our website for  cruise itineraries.   Contact us for more information and current promotions:  888-869-7907 or jan@europeanbarging.com

AmaWaterways Bordeaux Wine Cruise Hosted by Messina Hof Winery

NEW DATE FOR 2021 BORDEAUX RIVER CRUISE
AND A $750 PER PERSON DISCOUNT

Due to the Covid-19 virus, we have moved our March 2021 wine cruise to August.

Paul and Merrill Bonarrigo from the Messina Hof Winery are hosting a Bordeaux wine cruise aboard AmaDolce.  Messina Hof is the most awarded and renowned Texas wine in national and international competitions. In a community steeped in tradition, Messina Hof Winery & Resort holds its own

Grapes on theVine

Lush, Ripe Wine Grapes on the Vine Ready for Harvest.

with a 200- year history of award winning wines. Although the winery itself was officially established when with the first vintage release in 1983, the rich wine heritage of Winemaker Paul Bonarrigo dates back six generations to Messina, Sicily. Merrill Bonarrigo’s family originates from Hof, Germany. Together they have pioneered the Texas wine industry in creating premium wines of distinction and a landmark wine country destination.

“In addition to the $750* per person discount off the cruise, Europeanbarging is offering each cabin a $25 on board credit.” Jan Baumgartner, Europeanbarging

Ama cabin with French Balcony

Ama cabin with French Balcony

 

The AmaDolce was built in 2009 and spans 360 feet long and 38 feet wide. There are 73 Staterooms aboard the ship and could accommodate a total of 199 people – 144 passengers and 45 crew members. The ship guarantees a comfortable cruise with plenty of room to socialize and enjoy the time aboard.

AmaWaterways 7 night Bordeaux Wine Cruise starts at $3,349 per person. (This includes the $750* per person discount). This fare is good for 7 nights’ stay in an river view stateroom. Those who will opt to join the cruise will enjoy the following: Fine dining at The Chef’s Table and Main Restaurant, and Sip & Sail Daily Cocktail Hour. Experience and socialize at a Captain’s Gala Dinner and Cocktail Reception Unlimited wine, beer, and soft drinks with lunch and dinner. Complimentary Wi-Fi access on board A variety of tours, guided shore excursions, wine tastings, and discussions. Free use of helmets and bicycles are also provided during shore tours and excursions while the ship is in port.

The AmaWaterways Cruise departs on August 5th and will disembark on August 12th, 2021. The 7- day cruise promises a great time aboard the ship and on land during each scheduled porting. There’s no more fitting starting point for this sailing along the Garonne and Dordogne Rivers than Bordeaux, an undisputed wine capital. Enjoy exquisite tastings just as unforgettable as the wines you’ll sip. Visit the renowned vineyards of Saint-Émilion, Pauillac and Libourne, discovering timeless wine-making traditions, and visit the Bordeaux Wine Museum, a spectacular sensory experience with the power to turn even the most hesitant wine drinkers into connoisseurs. Various cities and sights are part of the AmaWaterways Wine Cruise destinations that includes: Bordeaux, Libourne, Saint-Emilion, Blaye, Bourg, Pauillac and Cadillac. Each day promises a new experience that should not be missed.

The following Multi-Choice excursions are available: in Saint-Emilion, choose from a tour of Saint-Emilion and Grand Cru Classe wine tasting OR Saint Émilion bike tour and wine tasting OR Château de Vayres; in Libourne choose from a Walking Tour OR Bastide town and market visit OR Château Boutinet hike with wine & tapas tasting OR Bike tour; in Blaye, a visit to the Citadel OR Blaye bike tour towards Les Etauliers Blaye to Bourg bike tour. Bourg offers a walking tour, Carriage Museum and WWII Petrol Cistern, as well as an Exclusive wine festival. In Pauillac Medoc Grand Cru Classé wine tasting and scenic vineyard tour; Cadillac features the Roquetaillade Castle with Sauternes wine tasting and in Bordeaux a Illuminations cruise in the evening and Bordeaux UNESCO city tour and Wine Museum OR Bordeaux bike tour.

The wine cruise promotes a wide range of activities throughout the whole trip to appreciate wine heritage more through a series of tastings, discussions, and tours around each port. Also included in the cruise are special tours and tastings at local wineries and private cellars where passengers can get to appreciate and learn more about wine making in renowned vineyards. There are also on board wine pairings with award-winning cuisine, and a wine expert who will be leading the tastings and discussions.

Uncork local traditions, savor intense flavors and enjoy palate-pleasing adventures during AmaWaterways Wine Cruises. The cruise promotes a great way to meet new people and fellow wine aficionados as they enjoy a 7-day cruise from Bordeaux along the Garonne and Dordogne Rivers. Book Now – as these wine cruises sell out.

*The $750 per person discount applies to bookings made by December 30, 2020.

For more information on the cruise and its activities, contact Jan Baumgartner of Europeanbarging.com at 888-869-7907, or send an email to jan@europeanbarging.com.

Basque’-ing in Bilbao, Spain

A mix of excitement and laid back is what you can find in Bilbao, Spain. There’s a vibrant vibe of shopping in the trendy marketplaces and the nightlife in lively bars. On the other hand, there’s a historic and relaxed feel in the contemporary art and architecture of the museums and old buildings. Exploring this city in the northern part of Spain’s Basque region gives you a versatile selection of activities to engage in for the best European vacation.

 

Here are some of the places you can visit in Bilbao, Spain:

Museums — the museums in Bilbao are globally acclaimed. The Guggenheim is one of the world’s most popular both for its shape and structure and for the contemporary art work that’s exhibited within its walls. The Museo Bellas Artes chronicles a hundred years of history and ten centuries of art. It showcases works of such artists as Picasso and Goya as well as of more contemporary local artists. Other museums that deserve a slot in your must-visit list are: the Archeological Museum, the Maritime Museum, and the Bullfighting Museum

Local Scene — Bilbao is a great place to wine and dine. One Michelin restaurant, Restaurante de Mina, can be found right across from Mercado de la Ribera. It would be necessary to call in for a reservation since the restaurant can only seat less than thirty guests. The gustatory experience is truly extraordinary with meticulously prepared courses using the freshest local ingredients. Those specifically looking to feast on authentic Spanish paella, however, can go to either one of La Barraca’s two Bilbao locations. They offer a dozen paella variants for you to choose from based on your preferred ‘star’ ingredients.

For shopping, there’s Mercado de la Ribera for fresh products and a good dose of local flavor – both food and culture. This is an interesting visit for food lovers and people watchers alike. Fashionistas, on the other hand, can delight their hearts at Choses de Femme and Veritas. To wind up your day after shopping, don’t forget to sample Bilbao’s pintxos too.

Architecture — one of famed architect Frank Gehry’s masterpiece is the Guggenheim in Bilbao. It’s unique shape and titanium construction is a display of the post modern disjointed style that Gehry is known for.

Another architectural work of art is the Azkuna Zentro commercial center. It traces a rich history from its roots as Alhondiga Bilbao, a corn exchange, to a thriving and dynamic multi-purpose venue today.

The old churches are always on the list when it comes to places of architectural curiosity is concerned. The Bilbao Santiago Cathedral is one of the must-visit places when it comes to 15th century architecture.

Nature — Bilbao has its own share of beautiful landscapes and sceneries to enjoy with its mountains and beaches. Just a short 15-minute drive from the city center will give you a picturesque countryside trip and take you to Azurmendi, a three-star Michelin restaurant set right on the mountainside. Those who have visited this restaurant describe the experience of walking through its interiors and being handed extraordinary unique treats – like edible cotton topped with asparagus and gold leaf covered hazelnuts – as being like Alice in Wonderland.

A quick outdoor escape can be enjoyed with a hike in Artxanda Hill and surfing at Sopelana Beach. You can also head on north to marvel at Bilbao’s unique geography and landscapes.

The Best of Basque

Bilbao, Spain is truly a destination for everyone. You have a choice to explore cities that match your own personality or go out of your comfort zone to try something different. Whatever road you take, you will never run out of options to delight your senses and give you the best vacation that you deserve.

AmaWaterways offers a 7 night Taste of Bordeaux, which features a pre cruise land program with 2 nights in Bilbao. A March 25, 2021 departure will be a wine themed Bordeaux itinerary hosted by Award Winning Texas Messina Hof Winery owners – Paul  and Merrill Bonarrigo.  These wine cruises sell out quick, so contact Europeanbarging for information on either the wine themed Bordeaux cruise or the Taste of Bordeaux cruise itinerary at 888-869-7907  jan@europeanbarging.com