Port of Strasbourg
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Built along the Rhine and located close to trading routes, Strasbourg borders Germany and Switzerland in the northeast of France and possesses a unique cultural and architectural heritage. Even dedicated Francophiles are often surprised how different the city is from the rest of the France. Once part of Germany, it offers the "best of both worlds," a combination that's most deliciously illustrated in its cuisine, which reflects a happy marriage of French flair and German heartiness.
With a history stretching back over 2,000 years, an obvious first stop for cruisers is Grande-Ile, the city's UNESCO-listed Old Town center. Visitors can admire Strasbourg's landmark lopsided cathedral, the beautiful Petite France neighborhood and the gateway to river cruises and streets chock-a-block with half-timbered Renaissance buildings. Many churches also went up in the Middle Ages, including Saint-Etienne, dating to the 12th century, and Saint-Thomas, which was built between the 12th and 14th centuries and ranks as the largest in size after the Strasbourg Cathedral.
Strasbourg is a town made for walking, but energetic visitors can also turn to pedal power and hop on a bike like the locals. Even the most haphazard stroll will take you past a wealth of well-preserved buildings, luxury shops and designer boutiques. More affordable buys can be found in Rue des Grandes Arcades, which is Strasbourg's main shopping area and features a variety of clothing stores.
Top Strasbourg Itineraries
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AmaPrima7 night Christmas Markets on the RhineAmsterdam, Amsterdam, Cologne, Rudesheim, Strasbourg, BaselNow
S.S. Antoinette7 Night Castles along the RhineAmsterdam, Cologne, Koblenz, Rudesheim, Speyer, Strasbourg, BaselNow
AmaStella7 night Christmas Markets on the RhineAmsterdam, Amsterdam, Cologne, Rudesheim, Strasbourg, BaselNow
Viking Vidar7 Night Rhine GetawayBasel, Strasbourg, Heidelberg, Koblenz, Cologne, AmsterdamNow
Where You're Docked
River cruise vessels dock at Quai des Belges, about 1.8 miles from the city center.
Good to Know
The city has a comprehensive network of flat, well-marked cycle paths, but jay-walking visitors distracted by the surrounding sights can pose a hazard when they meander in front of oncoming cyclists. So look carefully before you cross.
Currency & Best Way to Get Money
The currency in France is the euro. For current currency-conversion figures visit www.oanda.com or www.xe.com. ATM's are plentiful within the city center and close to Gutenberg Square. All major credit cards are accepted in shops, restaurants and cafes. Many taxis also take payment by credit card, but check first.
When out and about in this cosmopolitan city, you can tune in to more than 20 languages spoken by citizens of the member states of the European Parliament. French is the official language, but English is spoken virtually everywhere.
Locally made glasses and pottery -- packed carefully to take home -- loom large in many shops. Or you can choose from tablecloths, decorative items and linen goods with the distinctive kelsch, the regional pattern featuring checks or blue and red stripes. On the gourmet front, crisp Alsatian white wines, tangy Muenster cheese and pate de foie gras are typical flavors of the region and make popular edible mementos.