A week in the vineyards of the Rheingau, Mosel, Nahe and Rheinhessen in September 2018 for members of the HMWS, arranged and led by Peter Hofman & Bernard Dias
- Dates: Sunday 23rd to Sunday 30th September 2018
- Travel: Manchester / Frankfurt flight on Sunday afternoon and private coach for all travels in Germany seems to be the best option. (Cheapest return is £175. The most comfortable flight appears be with Lufthansa – Manchester/Frankfurt 11.35/14.15 and Frankfurt/Manchester 16.50/17/35 at £256). However, members are free to drive (Hull/Rotterdam overnight crossing and driving via Cologne) or take the train (Eurostar from London) to Assmanshausen on their own and join the group there
- Base In Germany: will be Hotel Zwei Mohren in Assmannshausen. 6 double rooms and 4 single rooms have been reserved and can be increased if necessary
- Projected Cost: The estimated cost is £750 pp twin sharing. The single supplement is £155. The cost is only a rough estimate at this stage and is based on current exchange rates. The cost includes B&B accommodation for 7 nights, all coach travel in Germany, tasting lunches, a Rhine Cruise with lunch and Peter Hofman’s expenses. Air travel, transfers in the UK, travel insurance, welcome dinner on Day 1 and Gala Farewell Dinner on Day 7 and meals other than those stated are excluded
- Maximum Group Size: is 20 but the trip will be viable with 15. Members who wish to make a reservation should submit a completed booking form (available from the Society) with a £250 deposit pp.
- Potential winery visits:
(Please Note: Peter Hofman will, in due course, prepare a full itinerary with exact costs, which will be posted on the HMWS blog. Members interested in joining the tour will be expected to pay the 30% non-refundable deposit to secure their places. The balance will be payable 8 weeks before the start of the tour. Members MUST have travel insurance to join HMWS tours and in the event of cancellation, all funds paid to the HMWS will have to recovered from insurers)
Day 1 – Sunday 23 September
- 11.35 am: Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt from Manchester airport
- 14.15 pm: Arrive Frankfurt
- Coach to Assmannshausen. (The distance is 60 km (1 hr.). From Eltville, the road runs close to the Rhine past Geisenheim with the famous wine institute and turns north towards Assmanshausen at Bingen where the river Nahe empties into the Rhine Gorge. Bingen forms the southern limit of the UNESCO Rhine Gorge World Heritage Site.)
- Checkin at Hotel Zwei Mohren
- Reception and welcome dinner
Day 2 – Monday 24 September
- Boat trip on the Rhine, stopping en route for lunch in one of the picturesque wine villages
- Evening free
Day 3 – Tuesday 25 September
- Coach to the Mosel
- Tasting at Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt (Mosel).
- Lunch afterwards will be booked at a local hotel or restaurant
- Return to Assmannshausen
Day 4 – Wednesday 26 September
- Coach to Nahe
- Tasting at Gut Hermannsberg (Nahe)
- Lunch afterwards booked at local hotel
- Return to Assmannshausen
- Evening free
Day 5 – Thursday 27 September
- Coach to the Rheinhessen
- Tasting and buffet lunch at Dr. Dahlem (Rheinhessen)
- Return to Assmannshausen
- Evening free
Day 6 – Friday 28 September
- Coach to Josef Spreitzer (Rheingau). Tasting
- Lunch afterwards booked at a local winery wine restaurant in Rudesheim
- Return to Assmannshausen
- Evening free
Day 7 – Saturday 29 September
- Guided walk in the Assmannshausen vineyards
- Farewell dinner
Day 8 – Sunday 30 September
- Coach to Frankfurt airport
- 13.20 pm: Lufthansa flight to Manchester
- 14.05 pm: Arrive Manchester
Reservations with £250 pp deposit
- Armstrong, John (Salisbury)
- Bent, Gail (Harrogate) (no meat but eats fish)
- Benson, Renna (Knaresborough)
- Buckley, Robert (Leeds) Arrival: Sunday 4pm from Trier
- Buckley, Pauline (Leeds) Arrival: Sunday 4pm
- Cameron, Stephen (Pick Hill) (Flights booked 21 February)
- Cameron, Ann (Pick Hill) (Flights booked 21 February)
- Coral, Tony (Surrey)
- Dias, Bernard (Harrogate) (Flights booked
- Dias, Ramani (Harrogate) (Flights booked
- Greenwood, Jane (Leeds) (single room) (Flight booked 5/3/18)
- Kerr, Helen (Surrey)
- Kraam, Abdullah (Leeds) (single room. Meat & milk free meals)
- Lee, Tony (London)
- Murphy, Peter (Ackworth) (Flights booked 2 March)
- Murphy, Carol (Ackworth) (Flights booked 2 March)
- Shore, John (Harrogate) (Flights booked 19 February)
- Shore, Pat (Harrogate) (Flights booked 19 February)
- Robinson, B
- Robinson, J
Travel To Germany
Flights are available from Manchester to Frankfurt daily and most members are expected to fly. The following will make their own travel arrangements:
- Benson, Renna
- Buckley, Rob & Paula (by car)
- Coral, Tony (traveling from London) (by car)
- Kerr, Helen (traveling from London)
- Kraam, Abdullah
- The suggested flight is with Lufthansa from Manchester (11.35) to Frankfurt (14.15) on Sunday 23rd September. The Lufthansa flight from London is at 11.30 am, arriving in Frankfurt at 14.05.
- The flight to Manchester from Frankfurt on Sunday the 30th will be at 13.20 and it arrives in Manchester at 14.05. The flight to London is at 14.00.
- The cost at present (19/2/2018) is £133 return
- Coach transfers from and to Frankfurt airport will be arranged
How The Tour Evolves…
- 21 September 2017: Peter Hofman offers to arrange & lead a wine tour to Germany. By 10 October, 17 members have registered interest
- 25 September 2017: Peter wrote: “I very much hope we can arrange a visit to Germany next autumn. I shall be emailing Sandra at the hotel during the course of this week to check on room availability and I’ll let you know when I hear back from her. I envisage flying out to Frankfurt on a Sunday and returning the following Saturday. Potential winery visits: Kesselstatt, Gut Hermannsberg (Nahe), Spreitzer, Burklin-Wolf & Dahlem (Oppenheim)”
- 10 October 2017: Peter Hofman contacted for dates & maximum group size
- 12 October 2017: “Good to know you have some positive interest in a trip to Germany next autumn. It would be very useful to me to know roughly how many rooms you think we shall need, so that I can advise Sandra accordingly. An approximate idea of numbers will also be handy when talking to the various wineries and the coach company. Sandra has promised to come back to me with dates very shortly.” – Peter Hofman
19 October: Peter Hofman wrote: “I have now heard from Sandra that the best week for us next year will be week commencing Sunday, 23rd September. I very much hope that will be O.K. for you. I have provisionally reserved 6 doubles & 4 singles. If you require any additional rooms, please let me know ASAP.” I have asked him for a rough estimate of costs
- 20 October: Peter Hofman wrote:
” I’ll now confirm to Sandra that we shall be arriving on Sunday, 23rd September next year and departing on Saturday, 29th. There will be no problem in arranging both welcome & farewell dinners, as on previous occasions.I’ll come back to you next week on the subject of costs, although any figure I come up with will necessarily be something of an estimate at this stage. I shall also now work out a programme for us and then contact the coach company for a quotation. The potential wineries for visits are: Kesselstatt, Mosel, Gut Hermannsberg, Nahe, Spreitzer, Rheingau, Josef Leitz, Rheingau, Dr. Dahlem, Rheinhessen, Dr. Burklin-Wolf, Pfalz
- 24 October: “I know you wish to have some idea of the costs of next September’s visit to the Rhineland. It is too early at this to book appointments with the various wineries and I do not yet have a quotation from the coach company. However, based on previous experience and the costs for the group I took out to Germany in October last year, I can give you a pretty accurate estimate of the costs involved per head while we are in Germany. I shall be able to send you early in January details of our programme and exact prices for the winery visits & the coach. By then too you will presumably be able to book your flights.” –Peter Hofman
- 26 October: “Thinking further about the size of our party for next year, I believe about 20 is ideal. Some of the wineries have difficulty in accommodating more than that number for sit-down tastings, which we shall certainly want. There is also the question of access to one or two places – where a large coach cannot go, a minibus often can. This becomes very relevant when visiting people like Gut Hermannsberg on the Nahe or Dr. Dahlem in Oppenheim.” – Peter Hofman
13 December: “I was out in Germany a couple of weeks ago for the Christmas Market in Rudesheim. It was my first visit to this event and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience.I spoke to Sandra about our trip next year and arranged with her for us to have a set meal the evening you arrive and a special dinner on either the Thursday or Friday evening (depending on our programme). Do you know final numbers yet? Once we are into January I shall start to put the programme together and then to obtain a quote from the coach company. I shall of course keep you informed.” – Peter Hofman, Bristol
- 2 January 2018: “I have this morning emailed Udo’s old coach company in Germany asking for a quotation for our travel requirements in September. I shall advise you as soon as I hear back from them.
Just to clarify one or two points: at present I have reserved with Sandra 8 double rooms and 1 single for your group (excluding myself). Is that correct? Can you let me have in due course details of your flights, so that I can organize the coach accordingly? For the moment, I have advised a probable afternoon arrival at Frankfurt on Sunday, 23rd September & morning departure on Saturday, 29th. Is everybody in the group reasonably mobile & are there to your knowledge any vegetarians?I shall be putting our programme together over the next few weeks and have already emailed Kesselstatt accordingly.” – Peter Hofman
6th January 2018: “Sandra has now confirmed the availability of 1 extra single room and also that there will be no problem about us staying until the Sunday. No reply yet from the coach company. If I don’t hear from them by the end of this week, I’ll chase them up.” – Peter Hofman
10th March: Peter Hofman was in touch again yesterday to tell me that the coach for the tour is booked. I told him that I will be flying to Frankfurt with the rest of the group on the Sunday (at first I was planning to drive and spend about three weeks in Germany) and a room at the hotel for a couple of extra days is now not necessary. However, members who are not flying to Frankfurt and are making their owen travel arrangements (by car, rail or foot!) are requested to indicate their expected date and if possible approximate time of arrival in Assmannshausen so that arrangements could be made to receive them and Sandra could allocate accommodation for them even if Peter is not present. (Peter has asked me to allocate rooms but I have declined. Zwei Mhoren is a small family hotel and all the rooms are not identical. It is possible that some will get better rooms than others and I would leave it for Peter and Sandra to decide!). Please note that it would be possible to arrange an extra day’s accommodation at the hotel (depending on when members are arriving) if sufficient notice is given. If anybody needs directions, Peter is happy to provide them. Talking about flights, two members are yet to confirm that they have bought their air tickets!This is what Peter wrote: “I have now received confirmation from Udo’s old company Bastian regarding our trip in September. I have managed to negotiate a small discount, so that their confirmed price for the week is now 2630 euros. The coach will pick us up from the hotel at 1.00 on Sunday, 23rd September to take us to Frankfurt Airport to meet the group.”
Traveling To Assmannshausen by Train
Consider taking a luxurious overnight cruise ferry from Hull to Rotterdam run by P&O Ferries, then onward trains to Germany. There are direct trains from Holland to Osnabruck, Hannover, Berlin, Cologne & Frankfurt. So why not take the overnight ferry to Holland, perhaps spend some time in Amsterdam, then hop on a train to Germany?
The north of England ► Germany
- Day 1, take an afternoon train from your local station to Hull. Transfer to the ferry terminal.
- Sail overnight by luxurious cruise ferry to Holland, with bars, restaurants & comfortable comfy cabins all with private toilet & shower, arriving next morning. P&O (www.poferries.com) sail from Hull to Rotterdam Europoort.
- Next morning, there’s a bus transfer from the ferry terminal to the nearest main station: P&O lay on a bus transfer from Rotterdam Europoort to Rotterdam Centraal. For full details of ferry timetables, station-port transfers, fares & how to buy tickets for travel via each of these ferry routes, see the UK-Netherlands page.
- Day 2, travel by train from Rotterdam Centraal to anywhere in Germany. Simply usewww.bahn.de to check train times & fares.
- A 12:40 ICE train from Amsterdam Centraal arrives Cologne at 15:19 & Frankfurt (Main) Hbf at 16:30, or there are later trains too. if you’d like to spend some time in Amsterdam.
Germany ► The north of England
- Day 1, morning: Take a train from Germany to Rotterdam Centraal (for P&O to Hull). You can check train times & fares from anywhere in Germany to Amsterdam & buy tickets online at www.bahn.de. The 09:29 ICE train from Frankfurt (Main) Hbf & 10:41 from Cologne arrives Amsterdam Centraal at 13:28, or there are other trains. By all means travel earlier and have more time in Amsterdam.
- Day 1 early evening, transfer by P&O bus from Rotterdam Centraal to Rotterdam Europoort for the P&O ferry to Hull.
- Day 1 evening, sail overnight by luxurious cruise ferry from Rotterdam Europoort to Hull with P&O (www.poferries.com) to Hull, arriving next morning (day 2). Transfer to the station and take a train home.
- For full details of train & ferry times and how to buy tickets for each of these routes, see the UK-Netherlands page.
Fares & how to buy tickets…
- Start with the ferry. Go to www.dfds.co.uk for www.poferries.com for Hull-Rotterdam.
- Then check train times and buy train tickets to Hull using www.loco2.com or www.nationalrail.co.uk. Allow plenty of time for the transfer from station to port, and for the ferry check-in.
- Now for the onward trains from Amsterdam. Book these at www.bahn.de and print your own tickets.
Information on German Wine Regions to be Visited…
Frankfurt to Assmanshausen
The distance is 60 km (1 hr.). From Eltville, the road runs close to the Rhine past Geisenheim with the famous wine institute and turns north towards Assmanshausen at Bingen where the river Nahe empties into the Rhine Gorge. Bingen forms the southern limit of the UNESCO Rhine Gorge World Heritage Site.
Things to see & Do In Assmanshausen
- St Hildegard’s Abbey located in the vineyards above Rüdesheim. There is a bookshop, winery and craft centre and the views of the Rhine Valley are spectacular. www.abtei-st-hildegard.de
- Niederwald Monument is a 123ft sculpture which symbolizes the re-establishment of the German Kaiser Reich. The monument can be reached on foot, by car or by cable car from Assmanshausen or Rüdesheim. rudesheim-rhine
- The Drosselgasse lies in the heart of Rüdesheim’s Old Town and its wide range of bars and bistros are a popular meeting place for both locals and tourists alike. There is live entertainment from mid-morning until midnight.
- Brömser Castle. The former 10th century fortress was later converted into a castle and now holds the collections of the Rheingauer Wine Museum.
- Ehrenfels Castle is situated amongst the vineyards between Rüdesheim and Assmanshausen and are today recognised as the most beautiful and picturesque ruins on the Rhine.
Assmanshausen Wild Herb Trail
The 8km wild herb trail meanders through vineyards such as the famous Assmannshäuser Höllenberg, ancient stone walls, lightly wooded forest fringes and meadows that provide a habitat for profusion of species. The exceptionally mild climate of the Rhine valley offers favourable conditions for a rich variety of vegetation including herbs such as wild rocket, fennel or even French sorrel. Information boards along this clearly signposted trail help walkers to identify over 20 different wild herbs and proviede interesting background information about their histories, uses and properties. The stunning panoramic view over the village and the Rhine valley transform this walk into an unforgettable natural experience. The gradients are categorised from easy to intermediate. The Kräuterwind restaurants in Assmannshausen are the perfect Destination at the end of a day´s walk and serve dishes seasoned with aromatic herbs, local wines and regional specialities.
HARROGATE MEDICAL WINE SOCIETY WINE TOURS
Booking Conditions and General Information
- Joining Tours: Only Members of the HMWS are accepted on tours. HMWS reserves the right to refuse any booking from a Member whom HMWS considers unfit or unsuitable for the type of travel to be undertaken.
- Liability: HMWS is not a tour operator or a travel agent and does not have membership of ABTA or similar organisations. The tours are arranged in good faith at Members’ request and the HMWS and the person or persons nominated to act as tour leaders do not accept responsibility for financial loss, death, injury or illness before or during tours.
- Is it the right tour for you?: Members should study the itinerary carefully before booking a tour to make sure that they are fit enough to undertake the activities listed.
- Payments & Cancellation: A 30% non-refundable deposit is payable at reservation. Balance payment should be made 8 weeks before departure. If the Society cancels the tour, a full refund will be made. No refund will be made if cancellation is made by members.
- Changes to Itinerary: HMWS reserves the right to make changes to the tour arrangements including flights, accommodation, transport or services.
- Refunds: No refund will be made for any unused hotel accommodation, service or transport.
- Insurance: It is compulsory that every traveller is adequately insured against personal accident and medical expenses. Members must send the HMWS details of their travel insurance policy. It is Members’ responsibility to ensure that they are adequately covered by insurance.
- Documents: You must ensure that all your travel documents, full passport, visas and vaccination certificates if applicable, currency and travellers cheques are in order.
- Identity: The name on your airline tickets should be the name that appears on your full passport.
- Dietary Requirements: Whilst every effort will be made to meet requests for special diets and disabled facilities, they cannot be guaranteed.
- Dress code & conduct: It is incumbent upon Members to dress in a manner befitting the occasion and conduct themselves in a responsible, restrained and sober manner when dealing with local wine suppliers and representatives, with local authorities and fellow travellers.
- Wine Tastings: Members should have every opportunity to listen & learn during wine tastings and private conversations should be avoided during such events. Members should be allowed to freely assess the quality and potential of the wines being tasted without undue influence, and therefore, opinions should be expressed only after the event and not during.
Updated 17 April 2018