Along the Mosel River in Traben-Trarbach, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. Photo via Flickr:Mark Strobl

Still quiet in the Marktplatz of Bernkastel-Kues, Germany. Photo via Flickr:Bert Kaufmann
5/5 (9 ratings)

Mainz to Merzig

Germany Bike + Barge Tours

A bike and boat tour featuring Saarburg, Trier, and Koblenz

  • This bike and barge tour through Germany aboard the lovely Merlijn begins in the picturesque town of Mainz. The Old Town, its inner city, is the pride and joy of the city scene. Broad, roomy squares, lovingly-restored half-timbered houses, and magnificent Baroque churches give the Old Town its charming, "gemütliches" character.

    Your tour will conclude in Merzig, a town filled with architectural highlights that span over eight centuries of history and its location along the Saar River makes it ideal for nature lovers, as well.

    Leisurely bike paths stretch out for miles along the riverbanks, following the courses of the three rivers, the Rhine, Moselle, and Saar offering not only beautiful panoramas but flat routes to cycle. As you pedal along through forests, meadows, and delightful little towns, look out for the castles and historical houses.

    Additional Highlights:

    • The Lorelei rock formation
    • Porta Nigra
    • The city of Trier
    • Wine tasting in Traben Trarbach
    • The charming town of Saarburg
    • Castle of Eltz

    We offer many more bike and boat tours in Germany, be sure to look at our comprehensive list!

  • 2018: £ 1131 $ 2,280 1320 NOK 12540 kr 11575 $ 1,505

    2018 Two-week tour Merzig to Bamberg: £ 2263 $ 4,560 2640 NOK 25080 kr 23151 $ 3,010
    2019: £ 1269 $ 2,556 1480 NOK 14060 kr 12978 $ 1,687

    Single Supplement: On request

    extra options

    Tandem or electric bike rental (rate is per day): £ 21 $ 43 25 NOK 238 kr 219 $ 29

    please note

    Bike maps available for sale on board.

    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

    Fly to Frankfurt International Airport (FRA) or Luxembourg International Airport (LUX)

    Local Travel

    Tour starts in Mainz
    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 and to other cities in Germany. Train travel from the airport to the central train station (Römisches Theater) in Mainz takes about 20 minutes. Trains depart every half hour. From the main station, the pier is only about 3 km away. We recommend taking a taxi to the docking location. At the end of your tour in Merzig, train travel back to Frankfurt airport is about 3 - 4 hours. Luxembourg Airport (LUX) would be closer to Merzig with travel time about 1 1/2 hour. The German rail site, bahn.de, is good resource when researching train travel in Germany.

    Climate

    Please check local conditions before your arrival. A good website to research average high/low temperatures, average rainfall, and more is weatherbase.com.

    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 traveler's responsibility to ensure proper documentation.

    *Important note: Beginning July 1, 2021, additional documentation from the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) will be required to visit any of the 26 Schengen-member countries for tourism, business, medical, or transit. This is an additional check on security rather than a visa.


Where You’ll Stay

On the beautiful Merlijn, a deluxe class ship.

What’s Included

  • Accommodations on board for 7 nights in climate controlled cabin with private bathroom
  • 7 breakfasts, packed lunches, and 6 dinners
  • Welcome drink
  • Coffee and tea throughout the day, ice water at dinner
  • 24-speed hybrid bicycle rental with pannier bag, towel, water bottle, and universal size helmet
  • Tour guide
  • Guided city tour in Trier
  • Wine tasting in Trarbach
  • Daily room cleaning
  • Welcome drink
  • Harbor, bridges and lock fees
  • Route information

What’s Not Included

TourBike+Boat
TypeGuided
SkillEasy
Length8 days
From1320 Rates
Client Reviews

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Tour Dates

2019:

Mainz to Merzig: October 5, 2019  (Sold out)
 

Skill Level

This is an easy, guided bike and boat tour with average daily distances between 25 and 40 km. The route is mostly flat on asphalted roads or bike paths.

Tour Boats

Day-To-Day Itinerary

Mainz to Merzig Map

Day 1: Arrival in Mainz – Cruise to Rüdesheim
Day 2: Rüdesheim – St. Goar - Koblenz, 25 mi.  (40 km)
Day 3: Koblenz – Cochem, 16 mi. (25 km)
Day 4: Cochem – Zell - Traben Trarbach, 22 mi.  (35 km)
Day 5: Traben Trarbach - Bernkastel Kues - Trier, 28 mi.  (45 km)
Day 6: Trier – Saarburg (15/35 km)
Day 7: Saarburg - Merzig (32 km)
Day 8: Departure

*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 Mainz – Rüdesheim
The Merlijn, your sailing hotel, already awaits you in the city of Mainz. Embarkation starts at 4 pm. The crew will welcome you onboard and while you enjoy a welcome drink you will get information about the ship, the tours, and the bicycles. In the afternoon you may have time for a stroll through Mainz. The Old Town, its inner city, is the pride and joy of the city scene. Broad, roomy squares, lovingly-restored half-timbered houses, and magnificent Baroque churches give the Old Town its charming, "gemuetliches" character. Around 5:00 PM the Merlijn motors to Rüdesheim where you will stay overnight.

Day 2: Rüdesheim – St. Goar - Koblenz, 25 mi. (40 km)
Today begins with a sailing breakfast so that you can experience the view of the statue, Loreley, from the Merlijn. In St. Goar you will start biking along the Rhine river passing charming cities such as Boppard. You will have time to visit the ancient city of Boppard, also called ‘the pearl on the river Rhine’. You might even want to take the chair-lift up to the magnificent view points on the Rhine loop.

The bike trip ends in Koblenz, where the Moselle meets the Rhine river at the “German Corner”. Here you will enjoy your dinner in one of the restaurants in Koblenz at your own expense.

Day 3: Koblenz – Cochem, 16 mi.  (25 km)
Today starts with a sailing breakfast while cruising upstream the Moselle river to Alken. Here you will start the biking tour to Moselkern.

You will bike into the Elztal and visit the castle Eltz. Lying romantically on a cliff, the castle is one of the very few that has never been destroyed during its long history. Afterward, you will bike to Cochem where the Merlijn has already docked. In Cochem, you may want to pay a visit to the famous Reichsburg or stroll through the cozy streets in this romantic city.

Day 4: Cochem – Zell - Traben Trarbach, 22 mi. (35 km)
The biking tour starts in Cochem and your first stop of today will definitely be the small village of Beilstein. This is absolutely worth a visit, it has never been destroyed and you will enjoy a stroll through this medieval village. Along the meandering Moselle River, you will bike to Zell - famous for its vineyard Zeller Schwarze Katz. Before you reach Zell you pass Sankt Aldegund, where the owners of the Merlijn live.  Also in this village is a great cellar with all kinds of mustards, liquors, and wines, worth a visit! In Zell, you will board the Merlijn and Captain Henk sails us to Traben -Trarbach, the city of the art nouveau. After dinner, we offer you a wine tasting in a local winery.

Day 5: Traben Trarbach - Bernkastel Kues - Trier, 28 mi. (45 km)
Today starts with a sailing breakfast while the boat cruises to Bernkastel-Kues. In this city magnificent framework houses line the marketplace. Later on, you will bike to the holiday resort of Mehring, passing the interesting city of Neumagen-Drohn. The Roman poet Ausonius already sang of the beautiful landscape in this area. The Romans fell in love with this landscape more than 2000 years ago and built splendid country-villas here. In Mehring, you will board the Merlijn again and together we will cruise to Trier. In Trier are many restaurants and you will enjoy your dinner in one of them tonight at your own expense.

Day 6: Trier – Saarburg, 16 mi. or 34 mi. (25 or 55 km)
In the morning, you may want to further explore Trier and enjoy the guided city tour. Trier was a Roman government seat and is well-known for its Porta Nigra, a gigantic city gate.

The cityscape is embossed from narrow alleys, framework houses, Baroque constructions as well as colourful fishermen and sailor-houses. The master architect of Berlin, Karl Friedrich Schinkel already named the ensemble of romantic houses and small bridges on the Buttermarkt “Little Venice” in the 19th century. After your visit to Trier, you will bike to Saarburg, following the charming Saar river. Tonight you will enjoy your dinner in own of the restaurants in Saarburg.

Day 7: Saarburg - Merzig, 20 mi. (32 km)
After a tour through Saarburg and a splendid view over the city and the Saar valley, you will bike about 15 km to the Saar-loop near Orscholz, the renowned river bend of the Saar. More than any other region, it symbolizes the "rendezvous in Saarland", a junction of water and land. An excellent viewpoint over the landscape and the Saar loop is at the “Cloef” above and invites you to a short stay. From there, it is only 10 km to today’s destination, the city of Merzig. On your way, you may want to visit the village of Villeroy & Boch: Mettlach. In Merzig, a short city tour in the afternoon gives you a chance to have a look at structures dating over eight centuries as well as visiting some museum.

Day 8: Merzig
End of tour and departure

 

 

Day 1: Arrival in Merzig 
Day 2: Merzig to Saarburg, 20 mi. (32 km)
Day 3: Saarburg - Trier, 12 mi. (20 km)
Day 4: Trier - Traben Trarbach, 28 mi. (45 km)
Day 5: Traben Trarbach - Cochem, 22 mi. (35 km)
Day 6: Cochem - Koblenz, 22 mi. (35 km)
Day 7: Koblenz - Mainz, 19 mi. (30 km)
Day 8: Mainz

*All distances are approximate. The itinerary is subject to change due to changing wind and weather conditions and other unforeseen circumstances having to do with mooring requirements, etc.

Day 1: Arrival in Merzig
The Merlijn, your sailing hotel, awaits you in Merzig. Embarkation starts at 4 pm. The crew will welcome you on board and while you enjoy a welcome drink, you will get information about the ship, the tours, and the bicycles. After dinner, there is time for a stroll through the city.

Day 2: Merzig to Saarburg, 20 mi. (32 km)
Today’s tour takes you through the wonderful Saarland region which symbolizes the "rendezvous in Saarland", a junction of water and land. From Merzig, it’s about 10 km to the excellent viewpoint over the landscape and the Saar loop at the “Cloef” above. Near Orscholz you will pass the Saar-loop, the renowned river bend of the Saar. From here you will bike further on to Saarburg, passing the village Mettlach, well known for the Villeroy and Boch products. In Saarburg you can enjoy a city tour and the splendid view over the city and the Saar valley. This charming city will impress you with its narrow alleys, framework houses, baroque construction, as well as colorful fishermen and sailor houses. The master architect of Berlin, Karl Friedrich Schinkel, named the ensemble of romantic houses and small bridges on the Buttermarkt, “Little Venice”, in the 19th century.

Day 3: Saarburg - Trier, 12 mi. (20 km)
After breakfast, you will continue your trip by following the river Saar river ‘downstream’. At Konz, the Saar meets the Moselle river. In the afternoon you will enjoy a guided city tour through this magnificent city. Trier was the Roman capital of the western part of the Roman Empire, and there are many reminders such as the Porta Nigra, the gigantic city-gate and the Roman Baths. Tonight you will enjoy your dinner at your own expense in one of the many restaurants in Trier.

Day 4: Trier - Traben Trarbach, 28 mi. (45 km)
While you enjoy breakfast the Merlijn sails from Trier to the holiday resort Mehring. The Roman poet Ausonius wrote of the beautiful landscape in his work. The Romans fell in love with this landscape more than 2000 years ago and built splendid country villas here. After visiting Neumagen-Drohn you will bike further on to Bernkastel-Kues, where magnificent framework houses line the marketplace. After a visit to this charming city you will board the Merlijn and cruise to Traben Trarbach. Tonight you will enjoy a wine tasting at the local winery Storck.

Day 5: Traben Trarbach - Cochem, 22 mi. (35 km)
Enjoy your breakfast while cruising from Trarbach to Zell, famous for its vineyard Zeller Schwarze Katz. Here your bike tour starts and you will cycle along the meandering Moselle through many charming villages, such as Alf, Sankt Aldegund where you can visit a cellar with lots of liquors, wines, and Mosel-mustards. You'll also cycle through Bremm and finally Beilstein. After exploring this interesting medieval village, that is still intact, you will bike to Cochem, where the Merlijn will await you.

Day 6: Cochem - Koblenz, 22 mi. (35 km)
Today starts with a relaxing sailing breakfast, cruising up to Moselkern where your tour starts into the Eltztal and the castle of Eltz. Lying romantically on a cliff, the castle is one of the very few that has never been destroyed during its long history. After a visit, you will bike to Koblenz, where the Merlijn will be docked close to the Altstadt and the German Corner. Tonight you will dine at your own expense in one of the many restaurants in Koblenz.

Day 7: Koblenz - Mainz, 19 mi. (30 km)
During your last sailing breakfast, the Merlijn takes you to Oberwesel. Today is one of the highlights of the trip: sailing by the rock statue of the mermaid, Lorelei. The heavy currents and a small waterfall create a murmuring sound. This, combined with the echo it produces, make it seem like the rock is singing.

In Oberwesel you'll get on your bike and end the cycling route by crossing the river to the charming, famous city Rüdesheim with its Drossegasse. Here you will board the Merlijn and cruise on the Rhine River to Mainz.

Day 8: Departure from Mainz
Departure after breakfast.

Looking for more?  View all of our featured bike and barge tours, or view our full list of bike trips.

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

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Customer Feedback

  • Lisa S. 8 months ago

    We were on the Merlijn from Merzig to Mainz; biking along the Mosell and Rhine Rivers. We biked through vineyards, sunflower fields and picturesque, quaint towns. This was our fifth bike and barge tour booked through Tripsite and we are looking forward to the next.

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Pat C. 8 months ago

    This is a must trip for anyone who embraces the Bike and Barge experience with a small group. The Merlijn is an extremely well managed boat with the owners attending to every detail in a friendly and caring manor. This trip checks off all the boxes, good food and drink, comfortable accommodation and arguably some of the most beautiful scenery in Europe. My only suggest is to book it early as it fills up quickly and in particular on this boat.

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Jocelyn M. 2 years ago

    The calmness and organization of the bike and barge event was refreshing. Barge was excellent, owners outstanding, timing and biking routes very pleasurable.

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Penelope R. 2 years ago

    The scenery along the Mosel River was breathtaking, and the staff and guide on the barge and bike tours were top notch. Very quality focused and very pleasant to be with during the entire week. This is a special experience for all.

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Carol T. 2 years ago

    Our bike guide was outstanding.

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Gina & Pat G. 2 years ago

    Everything was perfect! I cannot pinpoint one specific part but can say that we felt welcomed from the moment we stepped on the barge, all needs were met, including some that we had not thought of ourselves! It was the details to make this trip relaxing, stress free, comfortable, fun, full of laughter, memorable! I really like sweet wine and Jantien went out of her way to get the best sweet wine. Jantien, Henk and the rest of the staff as well as our guide were always one step ahead for all our needs: waterproof caps for the helmets on a drizzly day, drying our shoes and jackets when we returned, helping a passenger find a dentist when they lost a cap, the beautiful fresh flowers and special table decor for all our meals, impeccable service, the cleanliness of the ship, stamps and mail service to send our postcards, making dinner reservations, arranging taxis, laundry service, sharing the cultural differences both for education and comedy, and being social with the entire Read more… group and not just as boat owners. We thoroughly enjoyed them accompanying us on a few outings, offering fun surprises like a staff member playing the part of the Loreley as we passed the statue on the shoreline. We have never felt so relaxed, laughed so much, and felt so pampered!! Jantien, Henk, Lia, Miele and the rest hold special places in our hearts and we look forward to seeing them again in the future! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Randy S. 2 years ago

    My wife and I did a July cruise on the Merlijn that started in Merzig, Germany and ended in Mainz, Germany. What an adventure. Henk (our captain) navigated the ship perfectly as we sailed the Saar, Moselle and Rhine Rivers over 8 days and 7 nights. We were told that the Merlijn barge was converted in 2006...but the rooms and decor were still very modern. We were pleasantly surprised at the size of our rooms and bathroom. Our two twin beds were placed together, creating a very comfortable king sized bed with "air" controlled mattress firmness. As a 6'3" tall man, the shower accommodated me well, with an adjustable shower head. An inexpensive laundry service provided clean clothes daily if needed.

    Jantien (our cruise director and chef) provided great service and the food was excellent....even providing a vegan menu option for my wife. We enjoyed getting to know our fellow passengers, sitting with different people at each meal. Jantien was always there Read more… to provide any additional details or service if needed.

    We really enjoyed Lia, our bike tour guide. She was very knowledgeable and spoke fluent English, but was fluent in other languages as well. She knew her stuff and provided excellent details along the way. She even walked into the towns and villages with a small group of us at the end of each day.

    We enjoyed seeing the beautiful German countryside from a far different perspective than a typical visit would entail. We couldn't recommend a trip on the Merlijn more....and plan to do another bike and barge tour in the future, but next time, we will bring friends too.

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Lynda B. 2 years ago

    What a delight to pedal with a small group meandering along three major scenic Germany rivers in the company of a caring, experience guide, then settling into a comfortable bed on the Merlijn. I highly recommend the Merzig to Mainz route and don't miss the climb to the castles.

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Peg H. 3 years ago

    Klaus, Jantien and Henk!!!! This is a fantastic bike and barge trip. The rooms were the best we have ever had (this is my 3rd bike and barge trip). Very spacious bathroom and lots of storage in the room. Klaus, our guide, was the main reason I loved this trip. He didn't just cycle along the river trail. He took us through villages, back alleys, cobblestone streets, pastures, and hillsides. We never knew what adventure the day would bring. LOVED IT!! We learned about the history, geography and economics of the area. Jantien, our angel of the Merlijn, made every day fun and prepared wonderful meals. Henk capably mastered all the locks and made us laugh frequently! The level of cycling is very easy and can be accomplished by anyone. Miles and miles of vineyards, castles and churches. DON'T MISS THIS ONE!

    Boat: Merlijn

  • Jo Klok 7 years ago

    Five family members--four sisters & brother-in-law--took this tour in October 2011. The barge and crew are terrific. Jantien is a fabulous chef and Henk a great captain. Bikes are easy to ride and the tour a good mix of city, countryside and vineyards. I have recommended this particular trip to others. Another couple of our friends are taking the tulip trip on Merlijn in the spring at our recommendation.

    Boat: Merlijn

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Mainz to Merzig Boats + Barges

Merlijn Photo

Merlijn Germany, Netherlands Deluxe Class Boat The Merlijn has 12 luxurious cabins with two comfortable airbeds that can be pushed together or separated, a desk, a wardrobe closet, a hairdryer, and a safe. The lounge is comfortably furnished in a modern style with a restaurant area and lounge near the bar. You can enjoy fresh air, water, and nature in all weather on the sun deck. The entire ship is climate controlled and you can adjust the temperature in your own cabin.

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