Vienna, Budapest & Prague - Insight Vacations

Vienna, Budapest & Prague (Winter 2017-18)

Duration: 8 days Visiting: Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic

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

These three capitals, lush with magnificent cathedrals, imperial palaces and majestic castles, stand at the geographical heart of mainland Europe are ideal to visit during winter. Their histories and cultures are intertwined by the powerful Habsburg dynasty.

  1. Day 1

    Your Journey Begins

    Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).

  2. Day 2

    Welcome to Vienna

    At Vienna Airport, transfers for your tour hotel leave at 10:00, 13:00 and 15:00. During Advent, the Austrian capital is a place of nostalgia and romance, with concerts, nativity displays and traditional Christmas Markets. Why not soak up the atmosphere or spend time in a pavement cafe? Later, meet your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception and the opportunity to mingle with your fellow travelers over a beautiful evening of dinner and wine.

  3. Day 3

    The Habsburgs of Vienna and on to Budapest

    Vienna owes much of its present day charm to the long reign of the Habsburgs. Join your Local Expert for a private tour of Maria Theresa's Schönbrunn Palace. Then get your camera ready for a circuit of the famous ring road. This grand boulevard, built along the lines of the old city walls, showcases many of the capital's architectural masterpieces, including the Opera House and magnificent Hofburg Imperial Residence. In the afternoon, set off for Budapest - the former second city of the mighty Habsburg Empire.

  4. Day 4 - Relaxed Start

    Budapest, Queen of the Danube

    (Relaxed Start) Stroll through the alleys of the old town of Buda with a Local Expert. Admire the incredible interior decoration of Matthias Church and take in the view from the Fisherman's Bastion. Back in Pest, the commercial centre, see the grand Parliament building and visit Heroes' Square. Later, enjoy a visit to the First Strudel House in Pest to see experts at work, stretching the dough and filling the delicious treats – yours to taste with a rich, aromatic coffee. The rest of the day is free for you to browse the boutiques of Vaci Street. In December, the street is festively lit and the Christmas fair will be in full swing.

  5. Day 5

    Historic Bratislava and medieval Prague

    Journey westward, over the Slovakian border, to arrive at the fortified capital, with the four-towered Bratislava Castle looming over the city. There's time to walk from the banks of the Danube to the old town's historic squares and browse the market stalls. Continue through the wine-producing area of South Moravia to enter the forested countryside of Bohemia, dotted with peaceful lakes. Finally, you will come to the historic capital of Prague, boasting one of the most beautiful and intact medieval centres in all of Europe.

  6. Day 6 - Relaxed Start

    Prague Sightseeing

    (Relaxed Start) Meet a Local Expert at the 1,000 year old Prague Castle, dominated by the soaring spires of St. Vitus' Cathedral. Walk in the footsteps of kings, along cobbled streets past beautiful palaces for sweeping views of the city. Then descend to the Old Town Square, where the mechanised antics of the Astronomical Clock's glockenspiel delight onlookers every hour. In December, you may see children in traditional dress, dancing and singing at the Christmas Markets.

  7. Day 7

    Colourful Český Krumlov and musical Vienna

    Drive south through the forested Bohemian countryside to Český Krumlov, nestled amid loops of the Vltava River. Wander through the cobblestone, traffic-free streets, back lanes and arch-covered footpaths, past colourful houses that lead up to the finest castle in the land. On days when snow blankets the medieval buildings and wood smoke pervades the narrow streets, it's a scene straight from a Christmas card! As night falls, experience an extraordinary concert of Viennese classical music. The best-loved works of Johann Strauss and Mozart, performed by highly acclaimed soloists and dancers, are combined with a delicious meal of traditional Austrian fare, with drinks included.

  8. Day 8

    Depart Vienna

    Your tour concludes after breakfast with transfers arriving at Vienna Airport at 07:00 and 09:00. On arrival at your UK airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your return private VIP transfer home.

Highlights

 

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES

  • Vienna: The sheer opulence of Schönbrunn Palace will exhilarate your senses. As you stand beneath frescoed ceilings and crystal chandeliers, a Local Expert will bring to life the story of the Habsburgs, during your tour of the house and gardens.
  • Budapest: Visit Matthias Church with a Local Expert and gaze out over the Danube from the Fisherman's Bastion.
  • Prague: Let a Local Expert bewitch you with tales of Bohemian kings and the struggles of the Velvet Revolution, during a private tour through the atmospheric courtyards of Prague Castle. Admire the panoramic views over the Old Town and former kingdom.

TOP RATED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Christmas Markets: Be dazzled by the magic of Christmas, with local handicrafts and delicious, seasonally-festive treats like Glühwein. Explore on selected departures.
  • Bratislava: Stroll through the fortified capital city and gaze at the impressive castle.
  • Český Krumlov: Take a romantic walk through snow-covered lanes and soak up the atmosphere at the medieval old town.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Vienna: Learn about the legendary meeting between Mozart and Marie Antoinette. Tour the ring road seeing the Hofburg, Opera House, Parliament building and City Hall.
  • Budapest: See the gargantuan Parliament building and visit Heroes' Square in Pest.
  • Prague: See the Astronomical Clock in the Old Town Square.
  • Scenic Drives: View the forests, lakes and vineyards of Bohemia and Moravia.

AUTHENTIC REGIONAL FLAVOURS

  • Budapest: Learn the secrets of traditional strudel making with a visit to the First Strudel House in Pest. Sample this Hungarian delicacy accompanied with a cup of aromatic coffee.
  • Vienna: For your Celebration Dinner, enjoy a delicious meal of Austrian fare, with drinks, while enjoying acclaimed soloists and dancers.
  • Included Quality Dining: 6 Buffet Breakfasts (BB) and 1 Afternoon Tea (AT); plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 1 Three-course table d'hôte Dinner (DW) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) all with wine, plus tea or coffee. Departures on tour for Christmas and New Year's Eve will enjoy festive Highlight Dinners which will replace an included meal.

STAY AT THE BEST ADDRESSES

  • Vienna: With views over the city and neighbouring Stadtpark, the Hilton Vienna is just a short walk from attractions like the Opera House and St. Stephen's Cathedral.
  • Budapest: The InterContinental Budapest features elegantly appointed rooms. Experience 180-degree panoramic views over Chain Bridge, the Danube and the former Royal Palace that are as intriguing by day as by night.
  • Prague: The Majestic Plaza is located in the historical centre of Prague, only a few steps from the famous Wenceslas Square, and consists of two interconnected buildings with rooms furnished in an art deco or biedermeier style.

OUR FIVE-STAR SERVICES

  • Our highly-skilled Insight Tour Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend in a foreign land.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat touring coach, with extended Business Class legroom and on-board restroom.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
  • We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are 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.
  • From time to time, your Tour Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish - a local tidbit representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • Included airport transfers are available from/to Vienna Airport at scheduled times only, on arrival and departure days. Should your flights not coincide with these transfers or additional accommodation has been booked with Insight Vacations, charged transfers are available. Alternatively, or please make your own way from/to the airport.

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 trips. 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.

Danube Cruise Dinner & Drinks

The most leisurely way to discover this fairy-tale city is a private cruise on the Danube with a glass of fine Hungarian wine in hand. See Margaret Island, the Houses of Parliament, Castle Hill with its Fisherman’s Bastion, the Royal Palace, the Citadel and the University. While cruising, enjoy a lavish, gourmet buffet meal of Hungarian specialties and unlimited drinks.

Adult Price: EUR 63.00

Code: BUD0001

Parliament

Join your local expert for a tour of the Hungarian Parliament building, one of the largest and most ornate parliamentary buildings in the world. This impressive symbol of Budapest was the country's most expensive construction (they could have built a town for 40,000 inhabitants for the same cost!). With all of its gilded decorations and marble, it's often referred to as the 'Jewel box of the nation'. After the visit, we'll stop at the Kossuth Lajos square to see the Monument of the 1956 Uprising, then explore Liberty Square and take pictures of its monuments and statues. Finally, we'll see the Shoes on the Danube, a memorial dedicated to Hungarian Jews.

Adult Price: EUR 43.00

Code: BUD0005

Hungarian Dinner & Music

Gypsy music is entwined in the nation's cultural identity and Budapest is one of the few remaining European capitals with an active traditional music and folk dance scene. Tonight enjoy a sumptuous Hungarian dinner with drinks in a local restaurant while musicians serenade you at your table and put on a lively show that will leave you breathless!

Adult Price: EUR 61.00

Code: BUD0004

Traditional Dinner & Folklore Entertainment

Hearty and delicious, Czech cuisine borrows heavily from its Central European neighbours, but also boasts a few unique twists of its own. In a local restaurant, enjoy a traditional Czech meal accompanied by the planet's most perfect pilsner. During dinner, lively musicians in traditional dress set the mood with songs and dances from Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia.

Adult Price: EUR 58.00

Code: PRA0003

Magical Prague

Discover the hidden world of Prague's Malá Strana district on foot, accompanied by our expert local. Continue over the famous Charles Bridge, built in 1357, before enjoying a private cruise on the Vlatava. Enjoy a drink as you glide past the magical sights of Prague.

Adult Price: EUR 41.00

Code: PRA0005

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.

InterContinental Budapest

Budapest (Central) - Hungary

The InterContinental Budapest features elegantly appointed rooms. Experience 180-degree panoramic views over Chain Bridge, the Danube and the former Royal Palace that are as intriguing by day as by night.

Majestic Plaza Prague

Prague (Central) - Czech Republic

The Majestic Plaza is located in the historical centre of Prague, only a few steps from the famous Wenceslas Square, and consists of two interconnected buildings with rooms furnished in an art deco or biedermeier style.

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.5 out of 5 based on
8002 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 28 February, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: All the sights were beautiful and our tour director Karin was excelente.

    Service: Everything was done well, the only issue was not enough time in Vienna. Would have preferred flying into Vienna, and out Prague.

  • 25 January, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: We could not expect any more for the limited time in these areas. Gave us the taste to really want to go back, especially Budapest. Only two out of our four different tour companies got a 10, & yours was one. Thank you. (& that was a surprise for us) December 2017

    Service: Over the past 6 weeks we dealt with 4 different tour groups. We rated Insight 10/10 to our travel agent as it far exceeded our expectations. It started out as just a few days of gap filler. The enjoyment was mainly due to our guide for the trip, Brendan Lampard. He was experienced, had knowledge, & organised every day to perfection, especially NEW YEAR in Prague.

  • 24 January, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: I loved both cities and loved the hotels we stayed in.

    Service: Personable, knowledgeable, caring, organised tour leader: Brendan Lampard.

  • 24 January, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Fell in love with the place even if its winter time.

    Service: I will surely avail another trip with insight. Tour director is very well informed of the place. Nice location of hotels. Driver is very good and observes road safety. Attends to our inquiries even after the tour of the day is done. Coach is very clean. No need to line up so long in museums or in any tourist destination we go to.

  • 19 January, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: everything i expecpted and more great guide and driver

    Service: helpful, professional, cheerful, friendly, welcoming

  • 19 January, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: The local guides knowledge were excellent, and the tour leader helped made things ran smoothly. If it wasn't so rush it'd be even better

    Service: The services were good, most hotels we stayed were excellent and the dinners were lovely. t

  • 16 January, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Beautiful sights and easily paced, entertainment were great at the dinner shows, but the dinners provided were rather disappointing overall.

    Service: All the hotels were great with good breakfasts,but can't be said about the meals on the option excursions nor the welcome/farewell dinners which were mediocre at best. Our tour director, although helpful,lacked personality and was a rather dull chap! We had a fabulous and enthusiastic tour director plus outstanding meals throughout on a previous Insight Vacation tour to Spain/Portugal, so this was rather disappointing!

  • 16 January, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: The itinerary covered a lot of places of interest in such a short time and still provided us with sufficient free time.

    Service: Responsive and helpful staff.

  • 15 January, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Excellent destinations! Well chosen

    Service: I would definitely recommend them!

  • 11 January, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: The local insight of the tour director ensured that this itinerary was one of the most pleasurable holidays. Eastern Europe is an absolute delight and having great historical knowledge of the region makes the tour director a very welcome addition on this holiday.

    Service: Overall professionalism and service of the tour director and driver were a pleasure to experience. Local knowledge of the cities by the tour director, enhanced the experience greatly. The genuine concern and compassion of the tour director and driver was also great given that those are good qualities for visitors to experience in any country. I would definitely recommend Insight to many others.

  • 11 January, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Great locations with great history.

    Service: Well thought and organised. Although the location of the hotel in Prague was great, its standard wasnt that excellent.

  • 11 January, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: It’s action packed and filled with the important things to check off your “must see” list! I enjoyed the itinerary as well as all the optional experiences. The House of Parliament optional tour in Budapest was worth every penny as were the river cruises! The Folklore shows were very typical and enjoyable although I enjoyed the one in Prague more than the one in Budapest mostly due to the quality of food being better. The walking tour in Prague is exhausting. There’s so much walking on those beautiful yet tiring cobblestone streets but I know with certainty that I wouldn’t have been able to see everything that I saw had I not been with a local expert! The Schönbrunn Palace visit in Vienna so early in the morning was genius! We were the only ones in the palace for most of the morning and we were done with the tour as it started to get full, perfect timing! Insight Vacations has managed to balance a full itinerary along with some down time on your own which I highly appreciated. The friendships we’ve made on this trip are ones that I will treasure. Our tour director, Brendan Lampard, was exceptional!!!! I sometimes found myself asking, “How does he manage to pull all of this off without a hitch and always with a smile?” Being a teacher, I admire the amount of organization and hard work that goes into handling a tour of this nature. He was made for that job! His sense of humor paired with his extensive knowledge of all the places we visited made this trip a highlight in my book!

    Service: It was the first time touring with Insight Vacations and so we had many questions. Each and every time we called, they walked us through the process and answered all our questions.

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