The gorgeous town of Bernkastel-Kues, Germany is a highlight of this bike tour. Photo via Flickr:Franz-Josef Molitor
Lots of vineyards along the Mosel River. Photo via Wikimedia Commons:Areks

Liebfrauenkirche in Trier, Germany. Photo via Flickr:55laney69

Koblenz to Metz

Germany, Luxembourg, France Bike + Barge Tours

Bike in France, Germany, and a little of Luxembourg, too!

  • Enjoy a week of cycling in Europe while you bike along the Moselle River, touching three countries. It is bike and barge paradise. Paved bike paths, well-marked signage and easy cycling along the Rhine’s largest tributary. Throw in medieval market squares, half-timbered villages, gothic cathedrals, castle ruins, and WINE.

    You follow the breadcrumbs of history. The Romans “civilized” this “barbaric” region bringing their culture and the first grapevines. On both sides of the river, the precisely-tended vineyards hug the steep slopes.

    A highlight city on this tour is Trier, once an Imperial Roman city. You will see the remnants of this glorious past in Germany’s oldest cathedral, amphitheater, the emperor’s throne hall and famous “black gate,” the blackened remains of the ancient city wall.

    Onto Luxembourg and then France, finishing your tour in Metz, with great architecture from the centuries and a Gothic cathedral that took 300 years to build.

    Highlights:

    • Koblenz - gateway to the Unesco World Heritage Upper Middle Rhine
    • Burg Eltz
    • Cochem
    • Reichsburg Cochem Castle

    Make sure you check out our full list of bike and barge tours in Germany.

  • Price £ 1174 $ 2,440 1370 $ 2082 NOK 13015 kr 12014 $ 1,562 Single supplement on request

    extra options

    Electric bike rental (rate is per day): £ 77 $ 160 90 $ 137 NOK 855 kr 789 $ 103

    please note

    Rates are per person based on double occupancy.

    Information to read before you book.

    We recommend purchasing bike trip insurance.

    Please see our FAQ.

  • Travel

    The closest international airport to your tour start in Koblenz is Frankfurt (FRA) located approx. 99 kilometers from Koblenz. You can depart from Frankfurt as well.

    Local Travel

    Frankfurt Airport is well connected by public transportation. Frankfurt Airport Train Station, located next to Terminal 1, offers connections to popular German cities via Deutsche Bahn, the national railway company of Germany. There are local S-bahn lines (lines S8 and S9) that take travelers into central Frankfurt in about 10-15 minutes. From the airport, it is approximately 2 1/4 to 2 1/2 travel time with generally one transfer.The German rail site, bahn.de, is good resource when researching train travel in Germany.

    Climate

    Please check local conditions before arrival. The Mosel wine region has a northernly continental climate. A good website to research average high/low temperatures, average rainfall, and other weather related facts is weatherbase.com.

    Remarks

    High quality bike helmets available for use. Please be aware that you will be part of an international group of people, but the tour guide and crew members will always speak English. Eight electric bicycles available.

    DOCUMENTS

    Before you travel, please check your country's passport and visa requirements and the passport and visa requirements of the country/countries you plan to visit. For US citizens, the US Department of State website is a good source of information. The Country Information tab in the International Travel section provides details about passport validity, blank passport pages required, etc. For our other international clients, please be sure that you research your own country's travel requirements. It is each traveller's responsibility to insure proper documentation.


Where You’ll Stay

On the beautiful comfort plus boat, the Iris

What’s Included

  • 7 nights on board
  • Breakfasts, lunches and 6 dinners
  • Packed lunches for cycling itineraries
  • Daily cleaning service
  • Hybrid touring bike with helmet, panniers, and water bottle
  • Tour guide (from 18 guests, 2 guides will be included)
  • Entrance and guided tour in Burg Eltz
  • Wine tasting
  • Visit of Cave Cooperative in Luxembourg
  • WiFi

What’s Not Included

  • Individual arrival to the ship
  • Miscellaneous beverages not mentioned as included
  • Entrance fees not mentioned as included
  • 1 dinner
  • Gratuities
  • Bicycle Protection
  • Travel Insurance
TourBike+Boat
TypeBoth
SkillEasy
Length8 days
From1370 Rates
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Tour Dates

May 23, 2020

Skill Level

Easy, guided bike and boat tour. Routes follow mainly flat areas on asphalted country roads or bike paths.

Tour Boats

Day-To-Day Itinerary

Koblenz to Metz Map

Koblenz to Metz

Day 1: Arrival in Koblenz
Day 2: Winningen - Cochem
Day 3: Cochem – Zell - Bernkastel
Day 4: Bernkastel - Trier
Day 5: Trier – Saarburg
Day 6: Saarburg - Remich
Day 7: Remich - Metz
Day 8: Metz

*All distances are approximate. The above planned itinerary is subject to change, even on very short notice,  due to changing wind and weather conditions and other unforeseen circumstances having to do with mooring requirements, docking location changes, lock repairs,  etc.

Day 1: Arrival in Koblenz 
Arriving in Koblenz you will find the IRIS, moored close to the Deutsche Eck, the triangel landmark at the confluence of the Moselle with the Rhine. You will have a nice view at the mighty Ehrenbreitenstein fortress. Here the noble Riesling grape is Queen. Trocken means dry. Order one and prepare to become a convert for life. Prefer a beer in the Koblenz’ Biergarten? Just steps away from the barge, you can quench your thirst. Koblenz is a lively!  A cablecar can take you up to the Fortress for a great view of this area! 

Day 2: Koblenz - Burg Eltz – Cochem
On a morning sail, you cross the first lock and enter the Moselle! Once you disembark, you pedal to the foot of the hills where the Burg Eltz is hidden. Untouched by wars or fires, you will find this beautiful castle worth the effort of walking to it. The guided tour takes you back through the ages. After your visit, you continue cycling to Cochem, the most visited village on the Moselle River. A bustling and characteristic Mosel town with steep wine-clad mountains, wooded hills, an impressive castle, and a picturesque square with beautiful timber-framed houses and cafes. Time for a Moselle wine!

 Day 3: Cochem – Zell - Bernkastel
In the early morning, while you are having breakfast, the IRIS sails to the village known as the Sleeping Beauty on the Mosel. Beilstein has been the backdrop for many German films. You will have the chance to see the venerated and rare relic the Black Madonna in the chapel of the Carmelite Monastery overlooking the valley.  After the visit, your bike journey follows the river upstream passing the steepest vineyards in the world to arrive in Zell, a beautiful hamlet where the river slices through slate mountains in dramatic oxbows and S turns. Zeller Schwarze Katz (black cat) is a legendary Mosel Wine. Continuing onto Traben-Trarbach, this town features world-class Art Nouveau architecture that proves its great importance in international wine trade during the 19th century. You then cruise to Bernkastel-Kues, the darling of the famed middle Mosel. This is Valhalla for Riesling aficionados and one of the prettiest town squares with timber-frame buildings dating back to the 1400s! The castle ruins on the hill are lit at night and especially beautiful. An evening stroll along the river is a must…words can’t describe the feeling of Old Europe. 

Day 4: Bernkastel  - Trier
From Bernkastel, the valley opens up and vineyards expand as far as the eye can see. Today you cruise past the heavy-hitters in the wine world: Brauneberg, Piesport, Trittenheim. Piesport is beloved by the Brits for the “little golden droplets.” Trittenheim lies in a sharp hairpin turn on the river surrounded by mountains coated with grapes. The chapel in the vineyard is one of the most photographed on the river. Later you bike on to Trier, a lively university town, powerful Arch-diocese, and Imperial Residence of Constantine the Great. All roads lead to Rome as they say, but in this case your road leads to Trier, the 2nd Rome in the 3rd century. 

Day 5: Trier – Saarburg
After vibrant Trier, your path leads  to a place that is a throw back in time. The name Saarburg means “fortress on the river Saar” to give you a hint of what to expect. The ruins date back to the 10th century, a summer palace for the Archbishops of Trier, powerful men and power brokers in the Holy Roman Empire. There’s a natural, steep drop between the “upper and lower” towns, connected by a high waterfall. Town fathers back in the 1300s diverted a local river to run through the center so they’d have access to water to fight fires quickly and have continual energy to run their mills. All of this is well-preserved in the 17th-18th century homes that cling to the hillside. It’s medieval German engineering at its best.

DAY 6: Saarburg - Remich
From Saarburg, you pedal toward Luxembourg, the tiny nation about the size of Rhode Island. Don’t let size fool you, Luxembourg is an important finance center and EU administrative city. On the way to the Grand Duchy, you visit a wine cellar to taste the whites from the upper Mosel. The wines here are different than the middle Mosel styles. When the terroir (geology) changes, so too do the wines. You also take you to a hidden gem. It’s a great story of historic preservation…imagine you’re a farmer in 1852 and you’re tilling your field. Suddenly, these colorful square pieces start appearing in the plough sod. What that farmer soon discovered was pieces that belonged in a tiled mosaic floor—dating back 1,600 years! The tile floor which lies in its original place, was once the centerpiece in a palatial Roman villa. The scene (in 3 million individual tile pieces) reveals scenes from gladiator games in the amphitheater. It’s breathtaking and original.

DAY 7: Remich - Metz
You say goodbye Germany and Luxembourg and head to France. For centuries, this territory has been German then French; German then French. You get the idea. You pass the fortress high up on the rocky outcrop, one of the palaces inhabited by the powerful Dukes of Lorraine. The route is lovely French countryside, riparian landscapes, and tiny villages. You ride past wheat fields and pastures of white cows (charolais) praised for their strength as draft animals and excellent meat. Thionville was the center of the steel industry until the 1980s. That might sound modern and industrial, but the city is ancient. The historic center shows us the medieval ramparts, lovely gardens, old streets and St.Maximin basilica which houses one of the finest organs in the world. Thionville is also part of the infamous Maginot line, an enormous defense network of forts and bunkers built between World Wars against the Germans. It failed miserably—one of the worst military strategies ever conceived. After spending millions on it, the Germans simply marched around in their Blitzkrieg warfare style. We cruise by barge to Metz, another ancient city strategically situated on a Roman trading route. St.Etienne Cathedral is the 3rd largest gothic church in France with flying buttresses and Marc Chagall stained glass windows. Metz is full of stunning architecture, flowers and great cafes. You will fall in love!

Day 8: Metz

Be sure to check out all of our featured bike and boat tours, or our full list of bicycle tours.

Email or Call 800-951-4384 +1 570-965-2064

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    Koblenz to Metz Boats + Barges

    Iris Photo

    Iris France, Germany Premium Class Boat The Iris was put to sea in April 2005. She is a refitted freight barge that accommodates 24 overnight passengers. The interior of the Iris is fresh, tasteful and comfortable. The Iris can navigate on most rivers and canals in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. On the top deck you will the lounge, a roomy sitting area, a cozy bar and a sun deck. The whole barge has central heating and air-conditioning.

    PWPC