CHOOSE YOUR OWN DATES from late NOVEMBER to mid DECEMBER!
Including breakfast daily, superior hotel with private bath, transfers, entrances as specified, rail tickets, tours as noted, featuring markets in NUREMBERG, REGENSBURG, VIENNA, SALZBURG, MUNICH, HEIDELBERG.
DAY 1 NUREMBERG
By High-speed Rail (ICE) it takes less than 2,5 hours from Frankfurt/Frankfurt Airport to Nuremberg. Your hotel is located in walking distance from Nuremberg Central Station (which is located just outside the Old City Wall surrounding Nuremberg Old Town and the Imperial Castle). The “Christkindles Markt” (Christ Child´s Market) in Nuremberg is among the most famous Christmas Markets in Germany. Held on Hauptmarkt square, one can enjoy the delicious Nuremberg Bratwurst while marveling at the beautifully decorated stalls offering local and traditional handicrafts and specialties in a medieval atmosphere.
Nuremberg’s history reaches back to the year 1050, its name “nourenberc” translates into “rocky hill”. Nuremberg’s famous landmark, the “Kaiserburg” (Imperial Castle), towers above the Old town, which is protected by the five kilometers long city wall, many towers and gates can still be visited. The medieval Castle is one of the most important imperial palaces dating from the middle ages from the 11th century (admission included). In the Third Reich Adolf Hitlers´Nazi Party had chosen Nuremberg for their Nazi Rallies and if you are interested in that part of history you may want to visit the Documenation Center Nazi Rally Grounds which are located just south of the Old Town.
When exploring the beauty of Nuremberg’s medieval Old Town you may want to start right at the Koenigstor (“Kingsgate”) which is the gate right across from Nuremberg Central Station. From where the timber framed buildings, the Gothic Church of St.Lawrence and the Church of St.Sebaldus can be easily reached by foot. Right next to the Koenigstor is the Handwerkerhof (craft center), here you will feel like you are back in the medieval times, there are craft workshops like they used to have a long time ago as well as a gingerbread bakery. Make sure to enjoy a Nuremberg Bratwurst along with a beer or a glass of “Frankenwein” (franconian wine).
DAY 2 REGENSBURG
In a little less than an hour the High-speed train (ICE) will take you from Nuremberg to Regensburg on Day 2 of your Germany and Austria Vacation Package. Your hotel is located in walking distance from Regensburg Central Station. You will be welcomed with legendary Bavarian hospitality into the best-preserved medieval city in Germany, where two thousand years of history remain alive today. During Christmas time the taste of punch, cookies, cinnamon stars and roasted chestnuts is all around the Old Town of Regensburg. Enjoy a glass of punch with a roll with roasted sausages – it’s a must!
Regensburg has a long history of imperial significance. The buildings, towers and churches offer an unspoiled peek into the past. You need not be a student of history to get a strong sense of what life was like in the days of old in Regensburg. Visit the dungeons, inquisition chamber and the exhibition of books and prints illustrating the history of the Imperial Diet. Castles, churches, monasteries and St. Peter’s Cathedral bear testimony to the grandeur of the prosperous medieval era, which is also brought to life in the many museums with their valuable and fascinating collections. The Stone Bridge and the Old Town Hall, set in the heart of the medieval city, are among the most important historic buildings in Germany.
DAY 3 VIENNA
After breakfast a High-speed train (ICE) will take you from Regensburg to Vienna, Austria´s Capital city. Travel time is about three hours. The price of your Germany & Austria Christmas tour package already includes the 48 hour Vienna Card. With this card you enjoy more than 200 discounts in Vienna, at museums and sights, theaters and concerts, in shops, cafes, restaurants and also the “Heurige” wine taverns. But most importantly with this card you also enjoy unlimited free public transportation within Vienna. Even though your hotel is located in the City Center it is great to have the option to take the subway, a street-car or a public bus. On your first day in Vienna you may want to visit the Imperial Palace, for example, the “Hofburg Vienna”, the center of the former Habsburg Empire. The Palace was Sisi´s Imperial home and household, and the Imperial Apartments, the Sisi Museum and the Silver Collection can be visited here. At the Vienna Hofburg you also find the Spanish Riding Schoolwhere you may want to watch a performance or join a practice session and also the Old Town Hall which is close by. In immediate walking distance of the Hofburg you will find the State Opera House, definitely one of the world’s most famous Opera Houses where the Vienna Opera Ball takes place every year. St. Stephen’s Cathedral is the seat of the Archbishop of Vienna and it is a “must see” as well as smaller churches like the “Universitatskirche” (Jesuits Church) and the “Peterskirche” (St. Peter’s Church).
The “Christkindlmarkt” on the square in front of the City Hall is Vienna’s classic Christmas Market. Strolling among the elaborately decorated trees in the park, Viennese and visitors from all over the world can enjoy the wonderful Christmas atmosphere. The tree with seals, the “Kasperl tree“, the “Herzerlbaum” (Hearts tree) as well as the “Post office in the clouds” offer a perfect setting for a souvenir photo.
DAY 4 VIENNA
Enjoy a full day of sightseeing in Vienna with your 48 hour Vienna Card. Maybe you want to visit the “Ringstrasse”, a circular road around the inner city districts of Vienna. In the 19th century the road was replacing the Old City Wall which had been built in the 13th century. Many of the buildings you find along this road, the Austrian Parliament Building or the University of Vienna the for example, were built around the 1850´s. You may want to visit Schonbrunn Palace and its beautiful Garden. Your Vienna Card covers the fare to get there; the subway station “Schonbrunn” (subway line U4) is very close to the entrance of Schonbrunn Palace, once the summer residence of the Habsburg family and home of Maria Theresa. The Rococo palace is one of the most important architectural, cultural and historical monuments in Austria and nowadays is one of the most visited sights in Vienna. It all started with the building of a mansion on hunting grounds in 1548 just outside of Vienna. The impressive Palace in its present form (it has 1,441 rooms!) was built and remodeled around the 1750s by Maria Theresa. Make sure to plan in some time for a visit of Schonbrunn Garden. There you also find the Neptune Fountain and Gloriette, which was designed to symbolize the glory of the Habsburg power. In the evening you will have time to visit the Christkindlmarkt again, of course!
DAY 5 SALZBURG
In about 2 hours and 40 minutes the high-speed “Rail Jet” (RJ) will take you throughout Austria, from Vienna located in the east of Austria, close to the borders to Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary, to Salzburg, all the way in the west of Austria, right at the German border. Salzburg, beautiful town close to the Alp Mountains, birthplace of Mozart is also the site of the popular movie “The Sound of Music”. Your hotel is located in walking distance of Salzburg Central Station and in the early afternoon – after you have checked in – you will join the English-speaking unique 4-hour Sound of Music tour yourself! This tour is an ideal opportunity to follow in the footsteps of Maria von Trapp while taking in local historical sights both from the city of Salzburg and also the picturesque lakes and mountainssurrounding the city. After the tour you may want to walk across the Salzach River to take a look at Mozart’s birth house and the small shopping streets in the area. Here you also find a wide choice of restaurants for dinner. Or you visit the wonderful Christmas market in Salzburg where you find various kind of delicatessen. The historic market was first mentioned in the 15th century is located at the foot of the Hohensalzburg fortress and around the Cathedral. This Christmas market offers many different crafts, local specialties and other Christmassy items.
DAY 6 MUNICH
On board of the high-speed “Rail Jet” (RJ) you will continue your travels along the Germany and Austria Rail tour back into Germany; it takes about 1:40 hours from Salzburg to Munich Central Station. Your hotel is located in short walking distance from the station. The price of your tour already includes admission to many sights in Munich (Munich Residence and Residence Museum, Treasury, Cuvilliés-Theatre, Hall of Fame and Statue of Bavaria, Nymphenburg Palace and Park, Marstallmuseum, Museum of Nymphenburg Porcelain) and with your tour package you will also receive walking suggestions for a self-guided walking tour through Munich City Center. Along this walking tour you will visit the Marienplatz with the New Town Hall (with the “Glockenspiel”), the Konigsplatz (King´s Square), cultural center in the 19th century and later, during the “Third Reich”, site of Nazi Party mass rallies and location of the Nazi Party headquarters in Germany, the English Garden as well as the the State Opera House. You will be able to visit famous churches like Munich Frauenkirche, “Dom zu Unserer Lieben Frau (Cathedral of Our Dear Lady), with a height of 325 ft. a Munich landmark, St. Peters Church, built in the 14th century and the Asam Church, which was built as a private chapel and integrated into an apartment building. The tour will pass by the most famous Munich shopping streets (Kaufinger street and Neuhauser street) as well as by the “Viktualienmarkt”, a traditional farmers market (open every day except on Sundays). The tour will take you by the famous “Alois Dallmayr” luxury delicatessen and coffee store as well as to the Hofbrauhaus of course, probably the world’s most popular beer hall. This may be a great place to enjoy a hearty dinner and a fresh Mass of beer (one mug holds 33.8 US fl oz)! This is not far from the Marienplatz (Marien square) where the Christmas Market is located since the 14th century.
DAY 7 ESCORTED COACH TOUR TO THE ROYAL CASTLES
Another highlight of your Europe Rail tour will be a visit of the world famous Neuschwanstein Castle. You will be on an all-day escorted coach tourwhich will first take you to Oberammergau for a photo stop (you may want take a look at the Festival Hall where the Passion Play takes place every ten years.) The coach will then take you to Linderhof Palace, the Royal Villa of King Ludwig II. The Palace and Park were inspired by Versailles and the rooms are beautifully decorated and furnished. After a short drive through Austria and back into Germany you will get to Neuschwanstein Castle. The picture of Neuschwanstein is probably present in everybody’s mind and Neuschwanstein really seems to be taken out of a fairy tale. You will join an English-speaking guided tour through the Castle. The tour of the interior, the Throne Hall, the Hall of the Singers, the Grotto and all of the private rooms which were built for King Ludwig II, will make the picture perfect! After the tour of the inside make sure to take some time to explore the castle grounds. The view of Neuschwanstein from the bridge behind the castle is like no other! Your luxury coach will take you back to Munich where you will arrive in time for dinner and/or another visit of the Munich Christmas Market!
DAY 8 HEIDELBERG
In about three hour train ride by speed rail, from Munich to Heidelberg Central Station you will continue you Germany and Austria Rail tour. Since the station is a little bit outside of the Old Town, where your hotel is located, your tour already includes a taxi transfer from Heidelberg Central Station to your hotel. Heidelberg is a beautiful historic town located along the banks of the Neckar River and the most significant sight is certainly the ruin of Heidelberg Castle, which is towering above the city. Since your hotel is located right inside of the Old Town of Heidelberg it is easy to explore historic Heidelberg by foot. Your tour package will include walking tour suggestions for the Old Town. Along the walking tour you will see the Old Bridge from where you have a nice view of the Old Town and the Castle ruins above. You will also pass by the “Marktplatz” (market place) which is the main square of Heidelberg, the “Peterskirche” (St. Peter´s Church) and the historic University of Heidelberg. Heidelberg´s University was founded 1386 and it is the oldest University in Germany and with more than 30.000 students it is still one of the most important universities in Germany today. If you want to enjoy a view over Heidelberg and the Neckar River you may want to walk up to the grounds of the castle ruins or – for a small fee, take the historic funicular up and down Heidelberg Castle. The historic Christmas Market is held on seven squares around the Old Town, featuring those typical stalls displaying Christmas handicrafts, local specialties. At night enjoy the splendid view of the illuminated castle.
DAY 9 FRANKFURT INT. AIRPORT
Today your Germany and Austria Christmas Vacation Package ends. Depending on the departure time of your flight from Frankfurt International Airport we will arrange a transfer from your hotel to the airport. The airport shuttle bus will pick you up right at your hotel. Travel time from your hotel in Heidelberg to Frankfurt International Airport is about an hour.
THIS IS ALREADY INCLUDED IN THE PRICE OF YOUR TOUR
|Day 1 – Frankfurt Int. Airport to Nuremberg/ Nuremberg||Unrestricted High-Speed “ICE” train ticket, valid from Frankfurt Int. Airport to Nuremberg (the direct ICE train takes 2:20 hours)||Hotel Victoria (or similar if not available), located within the Old Town, right across from Nuremberg Central Station – 3 walking minutes)||Admission to the Imperial Castle in Nuremberg, admission to the Deep Well and to the Sinwell Tower|
|Day 2 – Nuremberg to Regensburg/ Regensburg||High-Speed “ICE” train ticket valid from Nuremberg to Regensburg (the direct ICE train takes 55 minutes)||Hotel Bischofshof Am Dom (or similar if not available), located within 10 walking minutes from Regensburg Central Station||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Nuremberg|
|Day 3 – Regensburg to Vienna/ Vienna||High-Speed “ICE” rail ticket valid from Regensburg to Vienna (the direct ICE train takes 3:22 hours)||Hotel Schani Wien (or similar if not available), located within 10 walking minutes from Vienna Central Station||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Regensburg, 48h Vienna Card (free use of public transportation system; discounts on many cultural and touristic highlights)|
|Day 4 – Vienna||no train ticket needed||Hotel Schani Wien (or similar if not available), located within 10 walking minutes from Vienna Central Station||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Vienna, 48h Vienna Card (free use of public transportation system; discounts on many cultural and touristic highlights)|
|Day 5 – Vienna to Salzburg/ Salzburg||High-Speed “Rail-Jet” train ticket from Vienna to Salzburg (the direct RJ train takes 2:22 hours)||Mozart Hotel (or similar if not available), located within 10 walking minutes from Salzburg Central Station||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Vienna, 4 hr Sound of Music tour|
|Day 6 – Salzburg to Munich/ Munich||High-Speed “Rail-Jet” train ticket valid from Salzburg to Munich (the direct RJ train takes 1:30 hours), ticket for unlimited free use of the public transportation system(buses, trams, subways) within Munich||King´s Hotel Center (or similar if not available), located within 10 walking minutes from Munich Central Station||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Salzburg, Admission ResidenceMuseum, Treasury
Admission Cuvilliés-Theatre, Admission Hall of Fame and Statue of Bavaria, Admission Nymphenburg Palace and Park, Admission Marstallmuseum and Museum of Nymphenburg Porcelain
|Day 7 – Royal Castles/ Munich||no train ticket needed||King´s Hotel Center (or similar if not available), located within 10 walking minutes from Munich Central Station||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Munich, All day escorted coach tour to Oberammergau and to the Royal Castles – Neuschwanstein Castleand Linderhof Palace, Admission Neuschwanstein Castle (Hohenschwangau), Admission Linderhof Palace & Park (Ettal)|
|Day 8 – Munich to Heidelberg/ Heidelberg||Speed “IC” rail ticket valid from Munich to Heidelberg (the direct IC train takes 2:57 hours)||Hotel Hollander Hof (or similar if not available), located in the Old Town (taxi transfer provided)||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Munich, taxi transfer from Heidelberg Central Station to your hotel in Heidelberg Old Town|
|Day 9 – Heidelberg to Frankfurt Int. Airport/ Frankfurt Int. Airport||no train ticket needed||no hotel needed||Buffet breakfast at your hotel in Heidelberg, airport shuttle transfer from your hotel in Heidelberg directly to Frankfurt Int. Airport|
THIS IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE OF YOUR TOUR
- Airfare from/to your origin to/from Frankfurt International Airport
- 3% tax
- all meals other than breakfast (which is included)
- gratuities (tips)
PRICE PER PERSON
|two sharing a double room||one in a single room||three sharing a triple room|
|US $ 1,599||US $ 2,399||US $ 1,439|