After boarding the luxury coach in Frankfurt, sit back and enjoy a scenic ride through some classic German countryside en route to the Czech Republic. Prague, one of Europe’s most ornate cities, is your first destination. You will arrive in the evening, ready to discover this charming capital city with its fairy-tale architecture, the following morning.
Your Prague adventure begins with a spectacular walk along the Royal Route, following the traditional coronation path of the kings and queens of old Bohemia. You’ll start from the top of Castle Hill in the Hradcany district, famous for its views over the red-roofed old city, and then tour Prague Castle. The castle has been the historic seat of Bohemia royalty since the 9th century, as well as home to the nation’s presidents in recent times. Your exploration then heads off around the imposing gothic St. Vitus Cathedral, the Old Royal Palace, St. George’s Basilica and along Golden Lane, an ancient thoroughfare lined with some wonderful traditional buildings.
Later you will stroll across the iconic Charles Bridge, which arches gracefully over the Vltava, and on through the winding alleys to the Old Town Square, where you can see the City Hall and one of Prague’s most well-known sights, the Astronomical Clock. After lunch in the square, you’ll make the scenic transfer from Prague to the hotel in or near the Slovakian capital, Bratislava.
On Wednesday morning you will arrive in Hungary, the fourth country of the tour. Its capital, Budapest, is known as the Pearl of the Danube, and is essentially two different cities joined together: Buda is on the west of the river, Pest on the east, each with its own distinct characteristics. One of the best ways of seeing this unique location is by taking a river cruise, which many people choose to do. After a morning of activity, you’ll relax over lunch at Buda Palace, and then have a chance to look at the exhibitions in the Budapest History Museum and Hungarian National Gallery, or do a spot of souvenir shopping.
Next you’ll explore both sides of the city on a cultural and historic tour. Highlights on the Buda side of the Danube include the towered terrace of Fisherman’s Bastion, the medieval Matthias Church and a walk up to the summit of Gellért Hill for panoramic views. While over in Pest the sights include the expansive Heroes’ Square and Hungary’s dramatic riverside Parliament Building. In the evening, you can choose to round off an eventful day with an optional dinner in the heart of Budapest, where you can sample traditional dishes such as goose liver, goulash, duck leg and local wine, accompanied by Hungarian folkdance and music.
Today starts with a short journey to another of Europe’s grand capitals, Vienna, where you’ll get to explore the Austrian city’s resplendent palaces, striking churches and prestigious art museums. Your Vienna adventure begins at one of the city’s most popular attractions, Schönbrunn Palace, the Rococo-style summer residence of the Habsburg dynasty, rulers of Europe and the Church for many decades. After lunch in this refined setting, you will take a driving tour past many grand, famous buildings, including the City Hall, the Austrian Parliament, Hofburg Palace and Heroes’ Square.
In the afternoon, you’ll have some shopping time, before adding the Wiener Staatsoper (opera house) to your checklist of key Vienna buildings. Later, opt for dinner in the heart of the city or visit St. Stephen’s Cathedral, before taking a stroll in Stadtpark, which is known for its range of sculptures, including the famous gilded bronze statue of Johann Strauss II.
In the evening, we recommend the option of attending a Viennese waltz concert, which will allow you the unforgettable experience of hearing the music of Mozart and Strauss in the place where it was composed.
From Vienna it’s on to another Austrian gem, Mondsee. Mondsee is a town located on the shore of the Lake Mondsee. The town is home to the historic medieval Mondsee Abbey. The cloister church was used for the site of the wedding in The Sound of Music. After lunch you will continue to cross the German border to Munich. After arriving in Munich, you'll visit the Marienplatz and the New Town Hall. Marienplatz is a central square in the city centre of Munich since 1158. The New Town Hall is at the northern part of Marienplatz. It hosts the city government including the city council, offices of the mayors and part of the administration since 1874. Or you can enjoy a German beer in one of the beergardens before going to the hotel.
You’ll leave the big cities behind today. Before you head for one of the world’s most famous mountain ranges – the Swiss Alps – you will make a photo stop in one of the smallest countries in Europe – Liechtenstein. The small picturesque city Vaduz is the capital of Liechtenstein with little boutique shops and the famous Huber shop for all your fine jewellery and watches. The next destination is Engelberg, the stunning Swiss resort. From here you can opt to board a cable car that takes you to the summit of the impressive Mount Titlis. To reach the top of the permanently snow-covered Mt. Titlis you take three different gondolas.
You’ll ascend the last stage by the world’s first revolving gondola, the Titlis Rotair, which delivers spectacular views of the valleys, glaciers, lakes and forests below, and 360˚ vistas of the surrounding mountains. At the summit the sun terrace is the perfect place to pause and appreciate the breath-taking panoramas. Other highlights include walking across Europe’s highest suspension bridge for more phenomenal views from Mt. Titlis.
Your next destination is Lucerne. Lucerne is a picturesque city of bridges and towers located in what many people believe to be the “true” Switzerland – picture-postcard mountains, lakes, cowbells, Alpine villages and meadows full of edelweiss flowers. Here you will have time to wander through the charming streets, and see the famous Lion Monument, which Mark Twain once described as “the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world”. This is a great place to get souvenirs like Swiss watches and fine chocolates, before travelling to the overnight stop of Zurich.
The final day of the tour begins in Zurich, a city with a reputation as a leading global financial centre. There is chance for a picture stop at the impressive Lake Zurich, before moving on to Rhine Falls, Europe’s biggest waterfall.
Next you’ll cross back into Germany and the Black Forest, the ancient fir-covered mountain range, which is famous for its creepy folklore and mythical tales. Here you will see the beautiful lake Titisee, where you can stop at one of the many lakeside cafés to enjoy some of the region’s best Black Forest cherry gateaux. Cuckoo clocks are made in Titisee, making this the ideal place to pick up a few souvenirs from the local shops and you’ll also get to see a demonstration of how these magical mechanisms work.
Finally, you’ll head back to Frankfurt, where it will be time to say goodbye to some members of our group, while others opt to stay another night in this major German city before switching to the Red Line tour the next day.
Royal Palace, George’s Basilica, Golden Lane, Vitus Cathedral.
Under 16 €6.50 under 6 free
Hum along to Strauss' An der schönen blauen Donau.
See the panoramic views of Budapest from a fairytale look-out.
A place of worship mixing the Gothic with Oriental influences.
Get acquainted with the passionate Hungarian culture.
Visit the 1,441-rooms in the Habsburger Baroque Palace.
Under 18 €11.50 under 6 free
Experience the beautiful tradition of the waltz while in Europe.
The world's first revolving gondola over Mount Titlis.
Under 16 half price under 6 free
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