This short yet eventful program offers a little of everything: art, palaces, landscapes … Mozart! Anchoring the program, however, are visits to the fabulous Christmas Markets of Munich, Salzburg, and Vienna. Sip mulled wine and shop for handicrafts in some of the oldest and most famous Christmas markets in Europe.
What better way to brighten the holiday season?
Wilkommen in Muenchen! Cheery greetings from your Tour Manager as you arrive at Munich Airport and transfer to your city-centre hotel. You have the rest of the day at leisure to relax before this evening’s Welcome to Europe Dinner!
This morning’s tour will show you the Glockenspiel, Munich’s cathedral, the Gothic New Town Hall and the Nymphenburg Palace, where you can tour the former home of the Bavarian Royal Family. This afternoon will be at leisure for you to browse in the shops and at the Christmas Markets, or perhaps enjoy some of the city’s rich collections of art in the many fascinating museums.
A village with Passion, and the fantasies of a King. Drive into the Alpine landscape of Upper Bavaria this morning, travelling through wooded valleys set below the snow-capped peaks. In this fairy tale country, Mad King Ludwig lived out his fantasies in extravagant palaces perched high in the mountains. Schloss Linderhof is the only building he ever completed, and it stands as a testimony to his philosophies. Your tour of the palace will show you the golden splendour of the king’s rich lifestyle. On your return journey, stop off in Oberammergau, where the Passion Play is enacted every ten years in fulfilment of an ancient vow. Cross the border into Austria this afternoon to lovely Salzburg, home of Mozart and The Sound of Music. Check into your centrally-located hotel and enjoy a stroll through the Old Town and the Christmas Markets before dinner in a local restaurant.
This morning’s guided walking tour of the Old Town will show you Mozart’s Birthplace, the Cathedral, the Festival Hall and the narrow Getreidegasse, heart of the Medieval town. Free time then, to explore on your own. Perhaps buy some Mozart candy, or enjoy lunch in one of Salzburg’s charming cafes before returning to your hotel for the night.
Drive to Vienna today. On arrival, enjoy a guided tour of the famous Ring, hub of the city and home to many of its most famous monuments. Drive to your Vienna Hotel for check in. There will be a guided walk through the heart of the city this evening, and a visit to one of the best of the Viennese Christmas Markets.
Visit the Kunsthistorisches Museum, one of the world’s finest art collections, this morning. See Old Masters painted by Brueghel, Durer, Rubens, Titian, Tintoretto and many others. See the brand-new Museums Quarter, a series of new museums dedicated to temporary exhibitions. Tour the Belvedere Palace, with its collection of nineteenth- and twentieth-century masters such as Klimt, Makart and Schiele. Finish the day at the Haus der Kunst, a shrine to contemporary art, designed by modern architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser.
This morning’s walking tour will show you the magnificent Hofburg Palace, former home of the Austrian emperors. You will see the Royal Apartments and the Treasury, as well as a Practice Session of the Spanish Riding School. Finish the morning at the Court Bakery for traditional Coffee and Cake. The afternoon is at leisure for you to do some last-minute exploring, or perhaps shop for souvenirs in Vienna, before tonight’s special treat; a Farewell Dinner of delicious local fare, followed by a rousing concert in one of the city’s auditoria.
Say farewell to Vienna this morning as you travel out to the airport to begin your homeward journey.
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