June 1992, Germany
A typical European river barge heading up the Mosel near Cochem.
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Introduction to the Rhineland
The Rhineland is one of the popular destinations in Germany. The Rhine between Koblenz and Bingen runs through a scenic gorge, lined with dozens of castles, many in ruins. The most relaxing way to visit the gorge is to take a cruise. Some take one boat downstream to Koblenz, stop for lunch, and then take another boat back upstream. The more inquisitive drive alongside the river, stopping to look at the sites up close.
But visitors should remember that the Rhine is a very busy transportation corrider, with river barges plying the sometimes dangerous waters, and with railroad lines on both sides of the river. So, many tourists appreciate the more relaxed environment of one of the Rhine’s main tributaries, the Mosel. The Mosel has many of the same elements as the Rhine, such as a meandering waterway through a scenic valley, castles, scenic towns, and of course, wine. Many consider Mosel wine superior to Rhine wine.
Many first time visitors to Germany visit the Rhine. Unfortunately, most defer a visit to the Mosel until their second visit.