Country Roads of Bavaria, Switzerland & Austria - Insight Vacations

Country Roads of Bavaria Switzerland and Austria (Summer 2017)

Duration: 12 days Visiting: Austria, Germany, Switzerland

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Optional experiences
  • Accommodation
  • Reviews
  • Dates & prices

Surprisingly, the vineyards, gabled shop fronts and opulent palaces play second fiddle to the scenery. Experience the magical, unrivalled beauty of the Alpine world, on-board the enthralling Glacier Express.

  1. Day 1

    Welcome to Fun-Loving Munich

    Airport transfers leave Munich Airport for your hotel at 10:00 & 13:00. Later, join your Tour Director for an orientation. See the Feldherrnhalle in the Odeonsplatz, the Palace of the Dukes of Wittelsbach, the English Garden, the Hofbräuhaus, St. Peter's Church and the famous Marienplatz. Afterwards, enjoy a Welcome Reception with the opportunity to mingle over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.

  2. Day 2

    Jewels of the Bavarian Alps

    Embark on an exciting visit to Neuschwanstein Castle, built as a retreat for the wildly eccentric King Ludwig II, bristling with turrets and pinnacles. See the exuberantly-decorated apartments including the Throne Room and Lohengrin Grotto. The rest of the day is free for you to explore Bavaria's capital city. Perhaps visit one of its many art galleries and museums, or relax and enjoy a coffee in the delightful Marienplatz?

  3. Day 3 - Relaxed Start

    Explore quaint Oberammergau

    (Relaxed Start) Continue on to Oberammergau, home of the Passion Play since 1634. With your Tour Director, see the immense theatre and colourful chalets before checking into your hotel for the night.

  4. Day 4 - Relaxed Start

    Salzburg, the City of Mozart

    (Relaxed Start) A short drive over the Austrian border leads to Salzburg, ‘alive with the sound of music'. Sightseeing with a Local Expert will reveal the formal gardens of Mirabell Palace, the imposing fortress, the cathedral in the Old Town and Mozart's birthplace. In the afternoon, perhaps take an optional experience to Hilter's notorious 'Eagle's Nest'?

  5. Day 5

    Into the Wachau Valley to Dürnstein and on to Vienna

    First stop will be Mondsee to view the ‘Sound of Music' church, before continuing on through Melk to the beautiful town of Dürnstein, set in the Wachau Valley. Immerse yourself in the vineyards and cellars of a local winery to learn about and sample the unique Wachau style of wine.  Finally, head for the Austrian capital of Vienna for dinner to choose from a selection of prized restaurants, offering a range of authentic dining experiences from classic Viennese to international cuisine.

  6. Day 6

    Vienna and the Habsburgs

    In the morning, a Local Expert will reveal the highlights of Schönbrunn Palace, full of frescoed ceilings, crystal chandeliers, mirrors and gilded ornaments. Spend some time in the formal gardens before going on to view St. Charles' Church, the Hofburg Palace, Parliament and State Opera House. The afternoon is all yours to explore the city at your leisure.

  7. Day 7

    Sleepy Austrian Byways to St. Veit an der Glan

    Take a delightful drive through undiscovered Austria. Climb the dramatic Semmering Pass and stop in Kindberg with its colourful maypole. Continue to St. Veit an der Glan, former seat of the Dukes of Carinthia and explore the fabulous medieval city walls, the old town square and the ancient Plague column.

  8. Day 8

    The Dolomites to Innsbruck

    Head for the distinctive rugged peaks of the Dolomites. Pass through Italy, crossing back into Austria to continue on to Innsbruck, set in a valley of snow-capped mountain peaks. An orientation of Innsbruck shows you the 14th century houses of the old town, the impressive Imperial Palace and the delightful Golden Roof.

  9. Day 9 - Relaxed Start

    The Engadine Valley and Chic St. Moritz

    (Relaxed Start) In the morning, enter Switzerland, driving along the beautiful Engadine Valley to the chic Alpine resort of St. Moritz. Enjoy the marvellous scenery and fresh air or browse in the elegant boutiques. Another option is a ride aboard the Bernina Express - one of Europe's outstanding train journeys.

  10. Day 10

    All aboard the Glacier Express and on to Lucerne

    An unforgettable journey allows ice-capped mountains, stone-built villages and lush meadows to slip by the windows of your Glacier Express train. Ascend through the spiral tunnels of the Albula Pass and cross the Landwasser Viaduct before heading down through the Oberalp Valley to rejoin the coach at Andermatt. Continue north to lovely Lucerne, one of Europe's most popular cities. Join your Tour Director to see the sorrowful sculpture of the dying lion, cut out of a limestone cliff to commemorate those Swiss Guards who died at the Battle of the Tuileries.

  11. Day 11 - Relaxed Start

    Dinner at the ‘Roof of Europe’ in Stanserhorn

    (Relaxed Start) The morning is at leisure in this beautiful city with its 14th century covered wooden bridges, painted gables, old walls and watch towers of the medieval fortifications. Stroll across the Chapel Bridge to the Jesuit Church, or use your free time to shop. Later, head to the town of Stans, to embark on a scenic journey by funicular railway and cable car, to the summit of the stunning Stanserhorn. On a clear day there are views as far as Alsace and the Black Forest in Germany. Here, amid true Alpine majesty, your amazing journey literally peaks with a fabulous farewell Celebration Dinner in a panoramic restaurant. This will be a fantastic bird's-eye wining and dining experience you'll never forget!

  12. Day 12

    Leaving Zürich

    Your departure transfer arrives at Zürich Airport at 08:00. Please do not schedule any flights before 10:00.

Highlights

 

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES

  • Neuschwanstein: A Local Expert leads you through fanciful rooms fashioned by medieval legend. Take in the amazing views over valleys and verdant mountains.
  • Vienna: A private, guided exploration of Schönbrunn Palace will have all your senses tingling. Stand beneath frescoed ceilings, crystal chandeliers and gilded Rococo frames where Mozart performed as a child prodigy.
  • Glacier Express: Journey through the heart of the Swiss Alps aboard the world-famous Glacier Express. Once settled into your modern panoramic viewing car, sit back, spellbound as Mother Nature unveils a scenic symphony of epic grandeur.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Munich: See the Marienplatz, Town Hall and Glockenspiel.
  • Bavarian Alps: See the Oberammergau Passion Play Theatre.
  • Salzburg: See the Mirabell Gardens, Mozart's birthplace on the Getreidegasse and visit the Cathedral in the Old Town.
  • Mondsee: View the church featured in ‘The Sound of Music'.
  • Vienna: Tour the Ring Road seeing the City Hall and Parliament.
  • Kindberg: See the colourful maypole.
  • St. Veit an der Glan: See the Plague Column and Rathaus.
  • Dolomites: Visit the fashionable resort of Cortina d'Ampezzo.
  • Innsbruck: See the Golden Roof and Imperial Palace.
  • St Moritz: See the spa quarter and ‘sgraffito' façade on the museum house.
  • Lucerne: See the emotive Lion Monument, Jesuit Church and Chapel Bridge.
  • Scenic drives: Bavarian Alps, German Alpine Road, Semmering Pass, the Dolomites, Engadine Valley, Grison Alps.

AUTHENTIC REGIONAL FLAVOURS

  • Dürnstein: Visit a local winery to learn about and sample the unique Wachau wine.
  • Vienna: For your dining pleasure, you are offered a selection of Vienna's vibrant restaurants. With drinks, a delicious 3-course dinner and Gemütlichkeit in abundance, your Dine-Around evening is a culinary experience not to be missed.
  • Stanserhorn: A spectacular journey by cable car and cogwheel railway takes you to the summit for expansive mountain views over Lake Lucerne for your special Celebration Dinner. Fill your glasses with wine and toast to newfound friends.
  • 11 Buffet Breakfasts (BB); plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 3 three-course table d’hôte Dinner (DW), 1 Dine-Around (DA) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) all with wine, plus tea or coffee.

STAY AT THE BEST ADDRESSES

  • St Moritz: The elegant Crystal Hotel is located close to shops in the town centre, where all the prestigious names from Chanel and Gucci to Louis Vuitton are lined up together.
  • Lucerne: The century-old City Palais in the heart of Lucerne has been masterfully restored. Behind the historical facade lies this distinctive first-class luxury Renaissance Hotel.

ADDITIONAL FIVE STAR SERVICES

  • An expert Insight Tour Director, at the pinnacles of their careers, will smooth your way throughout your journey. They are your ‘travelling concierges', expert guides, consummate organisers and friends in a foreign land.
  • Enjoy the unique comfort of Insight's luxury air-conditioned 40 seat coach with extended leg room and on-board restroom. It's business class comfort.
  • Personal radio headsets, gives you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights without missing any of your local expert's fascinating insights and commentaries.
  • Baggage handling everywhere, with seamless and prompt delivery to your door at every hotel.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. Plus we include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel WiFi.
  • Insight Flourishes - from time to time, your Tour Director will enchant you with local tidbits, each representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • Included airport transfers at scheduled times on arrival and departure days.

Optional experiences

Most Insight trips already include a host of bonus highlights and comprehensive sightseeing. There may also be an exciting array of Optional Experiences which will turn an already amazing experience into the trip of a lifetime! These are entirely optional and can be booked through your Travel Director/Local Representative at the commencement of your trip Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations. The Optionals and pricing listed here are a guideline only and subject to change.

Tyrolean Evening

Enjoy a lively evening of traditional entertainment, featuring dancers in national costume, yodelling and entertainment typical of the life, crafts and traditions of the Tyrolean people. Two drinks are included. (This evening may not be available on every departure)

Adult Price: EUR 45.00

Code: INN0001

Carriages & Countryside

In a typical rural community, meet local farmers for a delightful horse-drawn ride. Clip-clop your way through bright green pasture, where the angular spire of a traditional white church shoots skyward and rickety old wooden storehouses still dot the landscape. Call in at a local farm where a wonderful spread of homemade drinks and snacks is served.

Adult Price: CHF 67.00

Code: LUC0001

Swiss Evening

There's nothing better than convening with friends around a pot of bubbling fondue with a glass of chilled white wine and having a good yodel! Join us for a tasty Swiss meal in a typical restaurant. While you dine, enjoy a lively folklore show of flag throwing, yodelling, Alpenhorn blowing and other great Swiss entertainment.

Adult Price: CHF 99.00

Code: LUC0002

Lake Lucerne Cruise

A chance to take in the wonderful mountain scenery from a different perspective. Enjoy a leisurely lake cruise, for fine views of the town and it's surroundings. The serene beauty of Lake Lucerne on a summer's day is a joy to behold, made even more enjoyable by the encompassing snow-capped mountains, green pastures and dense forests.

Adult Price: CHF 40.00

Code: LUC0003

Munich The Dachau Memorial

After Hitler's rise to power in 1933, the first concentration camp for political prisoners was opened outside the town of Dachau and it became a blueprint for others to follow. Now maintained as a memorial, spend some reflective moments amid the remains of the camp prisons, reconstructed barracks, kitchens, workshops and baths which serves as the museum. A chilling and emotional reminder of the horrors of war.

Adult Price: EUR 31.00

Code: MUN0001

Bavarian Dinner

Tonight we'll soak in the lively atmosphere of a popular traditional restaurant. We'll enjoy traditional Bavarian hospitality and sample delicious regional specialties and local beer.

Adult Price: EUR 65.00

Code: MUN0002

Evening In An Austrian Chalet

Drive into the pretty Austrian countryside for a special evening in an Austrian Chalet. Meet the owners and learn about rural life over a homemade dinner in this cosy corner of Salzburg. In a totally unique experience, sip home-made beverages, feast on home-baked bread, succulent meat and oven baked vegetables.

Adult Price: EUR 61.00

Code: SAL0001

Eagle's Nest & The Bavarian Alps

Drive over the German border, past picturesque farmhouses and villages to Obersalzberg. Nearly 75 years ago, this small mountain paradise was the summer playground for top Nazi brass. Here we will transfer to special coaches for the scenic drive up the mountain to Hitler's notorious "Eagle's Nest". Used as a restaurant since the 50's, there are splendid views through the arches up to the 'Hohen Goll' and across the snow capped peaks.

Adult Price: EUR 55.00

Code: SAL0004

Slovenia Excursion

Visit Slovenia today, a small country with a big heart. Drive through the modern Karawanken tunnel to the tranquil shores of Lake Bled, an idyllic paradise at the foot of the Julian Alps. Join a local boatman in a traditional wooden 'pletna' to cross the turquoise glacial waters to the tiny island which rises in the centre of the lake. Surrounded by stunning mountain views, see the pilgrimage church where the famous “wishing bell” has been ringing out since 1534. After making your wish, enjoy coffee and a delicious pastry by the lake, followed by some free time for unforgettable photo-ops!

Adult Price: EUR 54.00

Code: ST 0009

Bernina - Express Excursion

Enjoy one of the most exciting train rides in Switzerland as you cross the Bernina Pass to the Alp Grum. Spectacular views of the Alpine peaks, glaciers, waterfalls, green valleys and mountain villages. We then descend to Poschiavo to reboard our touring coach.

Adult Price: CHF 53.00

Code: ST 0010

Gala Viennese Concert

Enjoy a wonderful concert of Viennese Classical music performed by highly acclaimed soloists and dancers. During this special evening, enjoy a glass of champagne along with some of the most famous works by Johann Strauss and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. (On occasion dinner will be included EURO 99)

Adult Price: EUR 54.00

Code: VIE0002

Dinner In A Country Mansion

Cross the Danube, passing the famous Prater Park en route to one of Austria's most famous restaurants. Former patrons include Napoleon, the Emperor Franz Joseph, Liz Taylor and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Once through the door of this historic country mansion you're transported to a different world! Old memorabilia, autographed photos and other paraphernalia cover the ceilings, walls and even the rest rooms. Choose from traditional Austrian fare, enjoy unlimited drinks and be serenaded by musicians at your table. A fun-filled experience never to be forgotten!

Adult Price: EUR 62.00

Code: VIE0003

Imperial Vienna

A visit to see the fabulous Imperial Treasury of the Austrian and Holy Roman Empire or the Crypts and Vaults of the Imperial Family or the world famous Opera House (when accessible).

Adult Price: EUR 39.00

Code: VIE0007

Accommodation

 

Leonardo Royal HotelThe Westin Grand Hotel Munich

Munich (Central) - Germany

Leonardo Royal Hotel/The Westin Grand Hotel, Munich

Hotel Alte Post Oberammergau

Oberammergau (Traditional) - Germany

This hotel is located in the heart of Oberammergau. Traditions developed over centuries are combined with modern conveniences, providing a very special kind of upscale Bavarian hospitality.

Arcotel Castellani Salzburg

Salzburg (Contemporary) - Austria

Combining historic substance and modern architecture, the Arcotel Castellani is located in green surroundings and only a 15-minute walk from the centre of Salzburg. It features a large garden including a Baroque chapel and a 400-year old linden tree.

Hilton Vienna

Vienna (Contemporary) - Austria

Set in the heart of Vienna and featuring contemporary decor, the award-winning Hilton Vienna hotel is one of Austria's premier hotels.

Blumenhotel Sankt Veit an der Glan

Sankt Veit An Der Glan (Central) - Austria

Blumenhotel, Sankt Veit an der Glan

Hilton Innsbruck

Innsbruck (Central) - Austria

Enjoy breathtaking views of the Tyrolean Alps from the Hilton Innsbruck, situated within the city centre of Innsbruck.

Crystal Hotel Schweizerhof Hotel St Moritz

St Moritz (Central) - Switzerland

Crystal Hotel/Schweizerhof Hotel, St Moritz

GUEST REVIEWS & EXPERIENCES

Our guests rate us 4.5 out of 5 based on 7784 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 10 November, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Excellent Itinerary. Maybe the included trip to the winery could be removed. Was not very interesting.

    Service: Very professional Tour Director. Nothing was too much trouble and she was always so happy and friendly. She was also very knowledgeable regarding places visited.

  • 08 November, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Again, didn't like the winery tour. Would have enjoyed more time at the monastery where we ate lunch that day. Perhaps a bit more time in Salzburg as well. Otherwise, I thought the itenary was excellent.

    Service: Director Sue Mason was excellent. Trip to Winery "fantasia" light show was silly. Dinner at farmer's home was wonderful, and something not often experienced on these types of excursions. Overall, felt the trip was very well planned and run, and with Sue offering many local insights as we reached our destinations, it was very easy to get immersed in the areas. Thank you.

  • 08 November, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Excellent tour group who aim to please.

    Service: Excellent tour group who always aim to please.

  • 08 November, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I enjoyed all the countries we visited.

    Service: It was great all around. The people the food the weather was outstanding! Thanks

  • 08 November, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: All hotels where central very informative and helpful

    Service: Great very informative.Very accomadting

  • 30 October, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: We loved everything about this tour: Castles, historic sites, charming villages, majestic views of the Alps by coach and train, delicious restaurant meals, a concert in Vienna and dinner at a revolving restaurant at the top of Stanserhorn, reached by cable car and climaxed by the sunset reflecting off the surrounding mountains and the sound of cow bells far below. The horse drawn carriage ride in the country was truly special and an opportunity to enjoy a bit of rural Switzerland with our very kind local hosts.

    Service: Our experiences on this tour were everything we'd hoped for and more. In terms of customer service, the hotels were clean and comfortable, as was the coach. Walter, our tour director, was experienced, knowledgeable, entertaining, kind and most helpful. He was especially instrumental in making this an extraordinary experience. We had an excellent driver, as well.

  • 26 October, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Especially loved the Old Towns and quaint villages.

    Service: A well planned out trip. Everything went flawlessly. Very personable tour directors - make the trip enjoyable. Love the flourishes!!

  • 25 October, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: 1 part was changed since the hotel that was originally scheduled had filed bankruptcy. Several guests were not happy with the new hotel that was picked - including myself - Hotel Post in Villach.

    Service: Tour guide was so knowledgeable and going out of her way for some that were a little difficult.

  • 25 October, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: All the cities were just outstanding! The itinerary was perfect (maybe an extra night in Salzburg). Our Tour Manager Sue was the best!!

    Service: Customer service was great! very professional!

  • 25 October, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Would have liked to inside more buildings

    Service: N/a

  • 25 October, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: This itinerary was a perfect taste of all three countries. There was a great blend of modern and historic hotels. The tours were informative and fun.

    Service: Customer service was prompt and efficient.

  • 25 October, 2017

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: It met all of my expectations.

    Service: Everything about it was amazing. The scenery, the people we met and our tour guide, Sue Mason. I was very impressed.

NB: Trip prices and dates are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. Note prices displayed reflect available discounted rates (i.e. Early Payment Discount, Last Minute Deals). All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however is subject to change, please confirm all details at time of booking. For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Booking Conditions page.
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