SS Antoinette River Cruise Blog Day 4
Today we awoke to thick fog – very disappointing seeing as today we were heading along the Rhine Gorge – the highlight of the cruise. However after breakfast the fog had lifted and the sun emerged – shining its warm autumnal glow on the river bank. The cruise director provided a running commentary of the various sights and castles that we passed, and when we go to Loreley Rock, we heard the story and they played the song over the loudspeakers. It is basically just a rock – so don’t get too excited!
There was a special lunch served up in L’Orangerie (to give it its proper name!) – a Fruschoppen – which was 4 different kinds of German sausage, sauerkraut, salads and a choice of beers. The local beer was very cloudy and made with plenty of hops –almost sweet and really tasty. So good in fact we had two glasses! The German sausages were good and tasty too - one had cheese in, however there was a fat white one that I didn’t enjoy quite so much.
SS Antoinette had now arrived in Koblenz, and would remain here overnight and for the next day too, Due to the very low waters on the Rhine our whole schedule has had to be re-organised. The captain was telling us that along parts of the river there has just been 30cms of water beneath the ship! That’s not a lot of clearance. All the other guests onboard SS Antoinette have taken to the change of itinerary well and Iv not heard any grumbles.
Koblenz celebrated its 2000th birthday back in 1992 and sits on the confluence of two of Germanys major rivers – the Rhine and the Moselle. Where the two rivers meet there is a park called Deutsches Eck, which translates as “corner of Germany” and a huge statue of Kaiser Wilheim I has been erected overlooking the river. The ship docked right in the heart of town and we joined our guide for a walking tour. The tour started at 2pm and was only 90 mins, however at his time of year its starts to get dark pretty early and by the time we had a coffee after the tour it had started to get dark, this was about 4.30pm. Worth bearing in mind when booking a river cruise – November is cold and dark! In Koblenz they had started erecting the little huts and stands for the Christmas Markets – all starting on Saturday, so we have not seen any of them yet! Hopefully in Cologne later in the week there will be an opportunity.
Back on board the ship we had a daily port talk by the cruise director outlining what would be happening tomorrow then it was off to dinner. Tonight’s meal was an Epicurean meal, with a selection of wines paired to each course.
For starters we had a delicious Carpaccio of Beef with rocket and Parmesan shavings, paired with a Pinot Gris. A Cream of Green Pea soup was followed by a palate cleansing sorbet an for mains you could choose from Oven roasted rack of lamb in mustard thyme crust, or Grilled Filled of Loup de Mer, with olives, capers and sun dried tomato salsa, broccoli florets and lemon risotto. I went for the fish, and it was very tasty, but again could have been hotter. The wines served with each course were all excellent and free-flowing. The desert was a local warm butter cake with almonds, ice cream and plumb stew.
After dinner we retired to the main lounge where local musicians were performing – two violinists and a guitarist who were all very good. As we were staying in Koblenz overnight the waiters onboard had suggested a local pub to visit – handily located just across from where the ship was docked – so off we went, some of us not retuning until 3am (yes I was one of them!)
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SS Antoinette River Cruise Blog - Day 6 »
SS Antoinette River Cruise Blog - Day 7 »