We are flying to Frankfurt Oct 29 and tentatively planned to do a Rhine cruise Oct 30 and stay in St Goar or Bacharach. According to guidebooks the cruises are discontinued for the season Nov 1. Has anyone done a cruise at this time of year? Just wondering if colder weather would cause the cruises to stop a bit early. If that would be the case we would change our plans and stay in Cochem or nearby to see Burg Eltz first and then drive along the Rhine and see some castles. Then we will drive on to Rothenburg. This is, of course, our first trip to Germany and we are open to suggestions/advice. Thanks!
Accidentally sent a private reply to this but have done extensive research on this area.
www.k-d.com is the web site for the rhine cruises. They have a winter programme which is on this web site and it goes right through winter. Our daughter and her friend took the winter route which is the "Middle Rhine" from Rudesheim to St Goarshausen which covers the major castle area so you will not have any trouble getting a boat BUT THEY TELL YOU TO BOOK so they may cancel some days if there is not sufficient interest.
Staying in Cochem is worthwhile - this Moselle area is beautiful. Very picturesque and I like the two rivers to the main roads of France (the Rhine) compared to the D roads of France (lovely little rambling roads with not much traffic).
Not much English spoken in Cochem. Majority of tourists who go to the Moselle Valley are German.
Rothenburg ob der tauber is wonderful. Great time to go to the Christmas shop! Hotel Markusturm - not cheap but great. PottyaboutParis
Since you are open to advice, Germany has an absolutely great train system. I use it whenever I can. I might take a little more research than driving, but it will save you money and be a lot more relaxing trip.
Unless the Rhein freezes over, which it won't, the K-D boats will run on schedule to the end of the season.
Whether you stay in Bacharach or St. Goar, do the trip from Bacharach down the river to St. Goar. It takes a half hour less time that way. As far as seeing some castles, in St. Goar you can visit the ruins of Rheinfels castle, then cross the river on the ferry (or come down from Bacharach) to St. Goarshausen. From there it is a 20 minute, €3,60 per person trip each way by train to Braubach, where you can see the only intact castle left on the Rhein.