Morning – Transit
The morning is the transfer to the river cruise ship. She is waiting for us in Trier. So the group was taken by but about 4oo-ish or so KM east from Paris to Trier (Treves). The route took us through the Champangne region countryside, skirting around Riems, Verdun, Metz and finally heading off towards Luxembourg and finally Trier. The countryside was very pretty and very hazy – much mist, dust and haze in the air..
Afternoon – Trier
Trier or Treves as it is known to the French is a very old city. Located on the Moselle river, it was founded by the Romans as far back as 30BC after
they have subdued the Traveri peoples. It is the oldest bishopric north of the Alps. The Franks seized Trier from Roman administration in 459 AD. In 870, it became part of Eastern Francia, which developed into the Holy Roman Empire. The bishops of Trier were soon recognised as imperial electors and as such the Elector-Prince-Bishops ruled (despite several invasions during the various wars) until 1794 when the French revolutionary armies finally took the city.
The city boats many monuments, including the Ponte Nigra – the black gate – that dates back to the Roman times. The gate is built out of limestone, but as is the case with many monuments, the dust, rain, soot and the like have darkened it over time.
Evening – Board the cruise ship
A little data about the river cruise ship we are on: The River Princess is a 110 meter long, 11.40 meter wide luxury river cruise ship. She is Swiss registered with home port of Rheinfelden, and She carriers 132 passengers and about 40 (mostly hotel crew) crew. The River Princess draws about 1.5 meters of water, and is propelled by twin mechanically driven and hydraulically steered variable azimuth pods in the rear and a twin side jet/thruster in the front of the ship. She was purpose built for Uniworld in 2001 in the Netherlands, and has undergone a major overhaul and refit in 2010.
The crew on the ship is of mixed nationalities. We have a Dutch captain (Remco), the first officer is Polish (Bartosz) and the officer in training is Romanian. The rest of the ‘sailors’ and the engineering/mechanical crew are German, Serbian and Romanian. Bart, the cruise manager (aka Bart the people wrangler) is also Dutch. The front desk and the hotel crew has Spanish, Swiss, Slovak, Bulgarian, Romanian, Hungarian, Polish, Serbian and German members.