Europe: April 21 to May 10, 2010: Amsterdam, "Castles Along the Rhine" river cruise, Lucerne, Lauterbrunnen, and Geneva.

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Suzanne wanted to see Switzerland. She also wanted to see the tulips in Holland. This trip achieved both goals by starting in Amsterdam and taking a river cruise on the Rhine down to Basel Switzerland. The cruise was Castles Along the Rhine , from Uniworld River Cruises. We flew from Newark to Amsterdam on April 21, the second day after the airports in Europe reopened after closing for 5 days due to the volcanic activity in Iceland. We thought we were going to miss the whole trip, but lucked out. Three nights in Amsterdam, a week on the Rhine, 3 nights in Lucerne , three nights in Lauterbrunnen and 2 nights in Geneva.

Weather was beautiful for the first half, and not so good for the second half. We got lots of use of our rain gear. Visibility was poor at the high altitudes where we were hoping to take panoramic pictures. Webcams showed nothing but gray, so several planned trips to the top of mountains were just cancelled in favor of walking around lakes and valleys at lower altitudes where we could at least see something.

Best restaurant on the trip: Soenda Kelapa Indonesian Restaurant in Amsterdam. A small spot, but good service and an enthusiastic owner. He stopped by the table and clearly had a committment to providing good food. Rod had a "rice table" and Suzanne ordered from the menu, but sampled the rice table. We were both sufficiently impressed to return the next night and each order a different "rice table".

Last update 5/17/10