The Eastern Discovery - Insight Vacations

The Eastern Discovery (Summer 2017)

Duration: 14 days Visiting: Austria, Croatia, Albania, Greece

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

Nestled on the fringes of Europe, many empires have waged war in this region. From Schönbrunn Palace to the mighty Parthenon in Athens, learn the stories of an area steeped in history.

  1. Day 1

    Welcome to Vienna

    On arrival at Vienna Airport, the airport transfers leave for your hotel at 10:00, 13:00 and 15:00. Vienna is famous for its delicious coffees and pastries so, after checking in, why not stroll to a local café? At 17:30, join your Tour Director for a warm, friendly Welcome Reception and an opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.

  2. Day 2

    Stately Vienna and the Habsburgs

    Join a Local Expert for a private tour of Maria Theresa's Schönbrunn Palace and formal gardens. Continue sightseeing around the famous Ring Road, built along the lines of the old city walls. After seeing the Opera House, the Hofburg Imperial Residence and Parliament building, the afternoon is at leisure.

  3. Day 3

    Zagreb’s Twin Towns

    Head through Styria's forested mountains, past Graz and over the Slovenian border to reach the 700-year-old university town of Maribor. Follow the Drava River to Croatia and its capital, Zagreb. Sightseeing with a Local Expert shows you Roosevelt Square, the attractive facades of Ban Josip Jelačić Square, the cathedral and in the medieval Upper Town, the Presidential Palace, Stone Gate, St. Mark's Church and the Tower of Lotrščak.

  4. Day 4 - Relaxed Start

    The Crystal blue-green Lakes of Plitvice

    (Relaxed start) Indulge in free time in the morning to relax and enjoy your hotel's facilities. Then depart for your authentic hotel, located right inside the UNESCO listed Plitvice Lakes National Park.

  5. Day 5

    Plitvice Lakes, Ancient Trogir and Split

    With a Local Expert, tour the Plitvice Lakes, a scenic wonderland of 16 lakes flanked by thundering waterfalls and primeval forest. Visit Korana Canyon's 230 foot high falls and Tomićevo Pogledalo for views over the park. Head down the coast to visit Trogir. Founded by the Greeks in 400BC but now renowned for its fine cathedral and Renaissance Cipiko Palace. Continue to the historic port of Split.

  6. Day 6

    Diocletian’s Palace and Dine-Around in Dubrovnik

    Your Local Expert will lead you through the labyrinth of streets that lie within Emperor Diocletian's former palace. See St. Duje's, (originally Diocletian's Mausoleum), the Temple of Jupiter (today, a baptistery) and the Golden Gate. Venture into the basement rooms thought to have housed his slaves. Next, drive by sparkling deep blue seas and the rocky islands of the Dalmatian coast to Dubrovnik. Choose from a selection of local restaurants for your Dine-Around evening.

  7. Day 7 - Relaxed Start

    Dubrovnik, Pearl of the Adriatic

    (Relaxed start) Join a Local Expert to explore the stone-paved streets inside the 16th century bastions. See the Rector's Palace, Onofrio's Fountain, the city walls, as well as the Franciscan and Dominican monasteries. The remainder of your stay is at leisure. Soak up the sun by the pool, relax at a café or take an optional cruise.

  8. Day 8

    Scenic Drive to Kotor and Tirana

    Just over the border, visit the old town of Kotor. Admire the bay - a UNESCO World Heritage sight - with its still azure waters lapping at the edge of the medieval towns, that are dotted between the surrounding mountains. Then travel through the spectacular scenery of Montenegro and the emerging country of Albania. Continue to the warmhearted capital of Tirana, for sightseeing with a Local Expert.

  9. Day 9

    Across the cobalt-blue waters to Corfu

    Traverse Albania to Greece where we set sail for the cobalt-blue waters of Corfu. Renowned since Odysseus for its untamed beauty and strategic position in the Mediterranean, Corfu remains an island where it is easy to get away from it all and escape the crowds.

  10. Day 10 - Relaxed Start

    A Relax in Corfu

    (Relaxed start) A full day to relax and enjoy the beautiful island of Corfu. Explore the Corfu old town, head to one of its incredible beaches, or why not take a cruise around the island? The choice is yours.

  11. Day 11

    Delphi, Centre of the Ancient World

    Depart your island paradise for spectacular Delphi, a spectacular cliff-side eagle's nest, and worthy of its selection as the centre of the ancient world.

  12. Day 12

    Delphi sightseeing and on to Athens

    Ascend the Sacred Way of Delphi with a Local Expert, past the Parian marble Treasury of the Athenians and Polygonal Wall – its interlocking stones still perfectly intact after thousands of years. You'll approach the Temple of Apollo, where for 14 centuries the mysterious Oracle of Delphi breathed her enigmatic ‘words'. Then, onto Athens! In the evening, enjoy a hearty Celebration Dinner in true Greek style, complete with wine and good cheer.

  13. Day 13 - Relaxed Start

    The Glory of Athens

    (Relaxed start) Join a Local Expert in the morning for Athens sightseeing. Enjoy glory in abundance, from the Parthenon and Acropolis to the Temple of Zeus, the Temple of the Wingless Victory and Hadrian's Arch. The afternoon is at leisure to explore at your own pace. Guests joining the cruise will be transferred to the port of Lavrion in the afternoon.

  14. Day 14

    Depart Athens

    Your journey comes to an end with a transfer to Athens airport.

Highlights

 

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES

  • Vienna: Let the sheer opulence of Schönbrunn Palace indulge your senses! Stand beneath frescoed ceilings, crystal chandeliers and gilded Rococo frames where Mozart performed as a six-year-old prodigy.
  • Plitvice National Park: Marvel at the water wonderland with a guided walk along stunning cascades, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
  • Split: Join a Local Expert to explore above and below ground within the walls of the Roman Emperor Diocletian's palace - now the heart of modern day Split.
  • Delphi: Ascend the Sacred Way, once lined with offertory temples. See the reconstructed Athenian Treasury and pass the superb Polygonal Wall to reach the Temple of Apollo, where the people would seek divine wisdom from the mysterious Oracle.
  • Athens: Ascend the ‘Sacred Rock', the Acropolis, to admire the Parthenon built in 5th century BC as well as the smaller Temple of Athena Nike and ‘Porch of the Maidens'.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Vienna: Tour the ring road past the Imperial Palace, Parliament and Opera House
  • Maribor: Appreciate the mix of old and new architecture.
  • Zagreb: See Roosevelt Square and Ban Josip Jelacic Square. Tour the Upper Town to view the Presidential Palace, Stone Gate, St Marks Church and the Pope's Tower.
  • Trogir: See the Cipiko Palace and Romanesque Cathedral.
  • Split: See St. Duje's, the baptistery and the Golden Gate on your guided sightseeing through the labyrinthine streets.
  • Dubrovnik: See Onofrio's Fountain, Rector's Palace and the city walls. Admire the Franciscan and Dominican monasteries.
  • Kotor: Visit the old town situated on its fjord.
  • Tirana: Enjoy guided sightseeing.
  • Corfu: See Corfu's old town.
  • Delphi: Ascend the Sacred Way of Delphi with a Local Expert
  • Athens: Visit the Parthenon with a Local Expert

AUTHENTIC REGIONAL FLAVOURS

  • Dubrovnik: Inside the mighty defensive walls of the old town, you will be offered a varied selection of charming restaurants on your Dine-Around evening.
  • Athens: Toast the culmination of your tour with a lively Celebration Dinner in true Greek style.
  • 11 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 2 Dinners (D); 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 2 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

  • Vienna: Set in the heart of Vienna and featuring contemporary decor, the award-winning Hilton Vienna hotel is one of Austria's premier hotels.
  • Split: The Hotel President Solin is a modern hotel, conveniently located just a few minutes from ancient city of Split and the famous Diocletian's Palace.

ADDITIONAL FIVE STAR SERVICES

  • An expert Insight Tour Director, at the pinnacle of their career, will guide you on your journey. Serving as your 'travelling concierge', this skilled guide will act as consummate organiser and be your 'friend 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.
  • A personal radio headset 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 Wi-Fi.
  • 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.

Accommodation

 

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.

Sheraton Zagreb

Zagreb (Central) - Croatia

Sheraton, Located in the city centre, all guestrooms are well appointed with modern amenities.

Jezero Hotel Plitvice

Plitvice (Scenic) - Croatia

Jezero Hotel, Plitvice

President Solin

Split (Scenic) - Croatia

President Solin is conveniently located just a few minutes from ancient city of Split and the famous Diocletian's Palace.

Hotel Kompas Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik (Contemporary) - Croatia

Overlooking the sea in the beautiful Lapad Bay, the Kompas hotel was fully renovated in 2015 andis only a 2 minute walk to the beach and close to the popular promenade.

Sheraton Hotel Tirana

Tirana (Central) - Albania

The only 5-Star hotel in Albania, located in the heart of Tirana.

Corfu Palace Cavalieri Dassia Chandris Corfu

Corfu (Scenic) - Greece

Corfu Palace/Cavalieri/Dassia Chandris, Corfu

Amalia Delphi Aegli Arachova Delphi Apollonia Delphi

Delphi (Scenic) - Greece

Amalia Delphi/Aegli Resort & Spa (Arachova)/Apollonia, Delphi

Crowne Plaza Radisson Blu Park Divani Caravel Athens

Athens (Central) - Greece

Crowne Plaza/Radisson Blu Park/Divani Caravel, Athens

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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