To show you the East, West and Central of Europe would be a tall order, but with this tour we give you a taste of rather a lot, packing in a combination of history and culture, architecture, nature and culinary delights, with your chauffeur-guide providing an interface to access the local people.
Reflecting back on your experiences, memories and images from the trip, you will feel you know East, West and Central Europe.
Meet and greet service on arrival at the airport by your chauffeur-guide. Depending on arrival time we can consider the best options. An Amsterdam canal cruise, the Amsterdam city tour to show off the highlights, and between mid March until mid May it is possible to visit to Keukenhof, meaning the kitchen garden, known as the Garden of Europe, often known as the Tulip Fields. Other popular sights are Van Gogh and Rijks museums and a drive to Zaanse Scans to see wooden houses and windmills.Amsterdam is the Netherlands’ capital, known for its elaborate canal system and narrow houses with gabled facades, we stay the night here.
The day begins with spending little more time in Amsterdam to visit remaining attractions. Then on to The Hague which hosts the Dutch Parliament, and we may visit the miniature park at Madurodam, then on to Rotterdam. In Rotterdam we make a city orientaion tour with a chance to show off one of the world’s largest harbours. Then on to Antwerp. Antwerp is the World’s diamond centre with a historic city centre. Then on to Brussels, the Belgian capital and the headquarters of the European Union, where we stay for the night.
We make a little Brussels city tour to show off the highlights, in particular the Manneken Pis fountain, the Royal Palace and the Atomium. From Brussels we set off to Amiens, a beautiful drive through Belgian and French countryside to reach Amiens, principally to visit the Cathedral, but there is much more to it if you are interested, the Quartier Saint-Leu, Musée de Picardie, Tour Perret sky scraper, the floating gardens,Maison Jules Vernes is the house of the author of Around the World in 80 Days. And then on to Paris. Just as you think that’s it for the day, after your hotel check-in, off we go for your evening Eiffel Tower visit.
A wonderful day in Paris at leisure to see the attractions. Paris is one of the grand old capitals of Europe so there is much to see. The river Seine runs through the city. Sainte-Chapelle and Notre Dame are on the river island Ile de la Cite. The key sights are all very central. Place de la Concorde, Centre Pompidou, Musee d’Orsay, Jardin du Luxembourg, Sacre-Coeur, Arc de Triomphe and the Louvre.
The day begins with our visit to Versailles, southwest of Paris, famous for its palace, the Château de Versailles, built for the Sun King, King Louis XIV in 1682 on the site of an old hunting lodge. Then on our way to the Burgundy region you will get to know more of the French countryside, with a nice stop for lunch. We could visit the town Auxerre which became properous as a port on the wine route with a delightful old town area. A little further east we reach the city of Dijon, the Burgundy capital with Roman origins. We stay overnight at Dijon. It is well known for its mustard and the wine, but what about the little owl?
Today we take a relaxing drive, most of the way is in France. Geneva is in Switzerland but right by the French border. We can choose the route via the Beaujolais wine region, through the Jura mountains or along the river Ain, with stops in little villages and vineyards, lakes and waterfalls. A major European and Swiss city, Geneva is not a capital city, but the headquarters of Europe’s United Nations and the Red Cross, a global hub for diplomacy and banking. On arrival in Geneva we make an orientation tour catching the main sights setting us up for a pleasant evening and night by Lake Geneva.
Today we take a wonderful drive through the Swiss countryside on the way to Zermatt via International Olympic Committee City Lausanne and Jazz Festival City Montreux. Both cities with medieval parts to see, a chance to hunt for Watches, Cheese and Chocolate, and a nice lunch stop. For food fanatics there is Nestle’s Alimentarium food museum in Vevey.
To reach the resort of Zermatt is an adventure because it is a car free village at 1600m. We can reach the village of Tasch, then we must take a short (12 minutes) train ride to access our overnight destination of Zermatt, with the possibility of stunning Alpine scenery including glaciers and the 4478m Matterhorn.
For today’s ride to Lake Locarno we take a beautiful route cutting across a section of Italy. From Locarno we can visit the famous Verzasca Dam with its 220 metre drop as featured in the 1995 James Bond movie GoldenEye with a bungee jump by Bond (Pierce Brosnan), you could do it too!
Today’s program takes us through a paradise of lakes, mountains and glaciers in the Bernese Alpes. We visit charming towns and villages around Interlaken giving access to Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen, Top of Europe Jungfraujoch, Mount Titlis, the Staubbach Falls, the Trummelbach Falls and the Murrenbach Falls. Also nearby is the village of Murren with its 2970m summit of Schilthorn with its revolving panoramic restaurant, used in the 1969 James Bond movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. , Lauterbrunnen is known as the valley of 72 waterfalls. We can include some of these depending on the time available, staying the night in Interlaken.
We drive through the Berner Oberland full of nature and the beauty of charming Swiss villages steeped in history, Chocolate, Cheese and Alpine Horn. A highlight of the day is our visit to the Swiss capital Bern with its bridges and towers, shopping arcades and the Bear Park. The old town of Bern is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We continue to Lucerne, make a brief orientation tour of Lucerne including the old town with its Chapel Bridge and the Lion Monument. The finishing touch to the day is the boat cruise on Lake Lucerne.
From Lucerne we head to Zürich to see its highlights and take lunch. In the afternoon crossing out of Switzerland and into Liechtenstein’s city of Vaduz, make a little orientation tour then drive into Austria along the Alps through Vorarlberg into Tyrol heading to Innsbruck for an overnight stay. Before entering Innsbruck we could visit the Swarovski Crystal Worlds.
In the morning visiting Innsbruck’s Imperial old town with its legendary Golden Roof and then drive into the Bavarian Alps. We pass by the foot of Germany’s highest peak, the Zugspitz at Garmisch, then Oberammergau renowned for its Passion Play and the wall paintings (Luftl Malarei). Depending on the time a stop at the Linderhof Palace, the only completed work of King Ludwig then onto a highlight of the tour, visiting King Ludwig’s castle of Neuschwanstein by the town of Fussen. At the end of the day, reaching the Bavarian capital Munich for an overnight stay.
We want to show off the 850 year history of Munich city centre, with the Marienplatz, the famous Maximilian street, the Hofbrauhaus area so renowned from Oktoberfest, BMW World, Allianz Arena soccer stadiumthen heading east towards Austria, passing Chiemsee lake with another of King Ludwig’s projects to the most beautiful baroque city Salzburg. On the way into Salzburg we will visit Red Bull’s Hanger 7, an object of far more than just architectural interest. After arrival and hotel check-in a stroll in the old town is recommended.
Salzburg is the home town of Edelweiss Tours, full of history and beautiful architecture. We want to show you the old city highlights, the Mozart connections, the key film locations from “The Sound of Music” and give you a taste of the Austrian Lake District including Hallstatt, oldest salt mine village, a World Heritage Site.
We head south from Salzburg. The first temptation would be to visit the Salt Mine above Hallein. We follow Salzburg’s river upstream passing the village of Werfen, where we could visit either the Castle or the Ice Caves. Then we cross the state of Carinthia leaving Austria we enter Slovenia and soon reach the Alpine resort of Bled. A scenic lakeside town with Slovenia’s only island. So photogenic!
We leave Bled to visit the caves of Postonja, take a walk between bridges by the river in Ljubliana, Slovenja’s capital, and an orientation drive through the third largest city of Slovenia Celje, with Celtic and Roman history, staying overnight in Maribor with a chance to walk by an ancient vine in the old quarter, with medieval towers and city walls to see too.
Today we have an easy drive into Hungary to Lake Balaton, for the locals it is the Hungarian Sea – the largest lake in the Central Europe area and stay overnight at Hungarians’ favourite summer holiday destination Siofok.
Today we go straight to Budapest for a full day sightseeing, we will take in the highlights of both sides of the Danube, Buda and Pest, covering Fishermen’s Bastion, Buda Castle, Gellert Hill, Heroes Square, and the Chain Bridge. For special interests there is the House of Terror and the Invisible Exibition. After a hard day of sightseeing a Danube Dinner Cruise is a possibility, or without the boat ride Budapest is a great place for dining options.
From Hungary we drop into Slovakia with a stop at the capital Bratislava. It sits on the Danube on the border with Hungary and Austria, we could check out some castles and palaces, take a lunch break then we slip into Austria with a stop at the shopping paradise Designer Outlet Parndorf before reaching Imperial Vienna.
We have a full day in Vienna to see all the important attractions around the old Ringstrasse, with the possibility of visiting the Schonbrunn Palace, the Natural History Museum, the Augarten Porcelain factory, the Imperial Appartments, the Spanish Riding School and much more.
Depending on your departure time we can plan in more to do or leave open leisure time in Vienna before we send you off from Vienna Airport, with that feeling that you have been around much of Europe.