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Alps, Central & Eastern EuropeRegional Journey
Duration: 10 days Visiting: Germany
Welcome to Berlin
On arrival at Berlin’s Tegel Airport, transfers to your hotel depart at 10:30 and 12:30. In the afternoon, perhaps visit the KaDeWe department store - the shopping centre of West Berlin which during 40 years of division, became the shop window of the West. At 17:30, join your Travel Director and travel companions for a Welcome Dinner with wine, at a local restaurant.
The Spirit of Berlin.
Join a Local Expert to see some of Berlin's many highlights. Travel along the Ku’Damm to the Memorial Church. Drive through the Tiergarten to see Norman Foster’s glass dome that crowns the reconstructed Reichstag building. Continue past the Brandenburg Gate, a symbol of the reunification, and down along the Unter den Linden, past the Humboldt University and State Opera. Stop on Museum Island before enjoying an afternoon at leisure in this once divided city. Perhaps take the opportunity to visit the glorious palace of the Prussian Kings at Potsdam?
Dresden, a Baroque Phoenix on the Elbe.
In Dresden, join your Local Expert to see the splendours of the city. From the Frauenkirche, which has risen again from the destruction of World War II, walk past ‘The Procession of the Dukes’, a mosaic of colossal proportions on the Royal Palace facade. See the enormous cathedral, Semper Opera House and Baroque Zwinger Palace.
Dresden, Nuremberg and onto Oberammergau.
In the morning, depart Dresden and travel south to Nuremberg. Although the town was heavily bombed in World War II, it still remains a treasure trove of early German history and medieval architecture. With a local historian, tour the Old Town to see the charming blend of stone and timbered dwellings and the massive ramparts with its 46 towers. There is time to shop for delicious Lebkuchen (gingerbread) before continuing to fun-loving Munich. An orientation will show you the university, Victory Arch and the Marienplatz, where crowds gather at the Town Hall to watch the antics of the Glockenspiel. Then onto Oberammergau in the Bavarian Alps, home of the Passion Play since 1634.
The Passion Play
After a morning at leisure in charming Oberammergau, take your premium reserved seats to witness the world famous Passion Play, re-enacting the last days of Christ on earth. After a break for dinner in a local restaurant, the captivating performance continues into the evening.
Into the Black Forest
In the morning journey to Lindau, an island in Lake Constance connected to the mainland by a causeway. Stroll through the narrow streets past old inns and half-timbered houses, to admire the fantastic backdrop of the Swiss and Austrian Alps across the lake. Take a delightful drive along the shores of Lake Constance, lined with orchards and vineyards, to the Black Forest. The Black Forest is the land of cherry cake and cuckoo clocks, where traditional farmhouses dip their thatched roofs almost to the ground. Stop in one of the centres of the wood-carving industry to meet locals who still make cuckoo clocks by hand, a tradition passed down over 300 years.
(Relaxed Start) Venture to Rothenburg-ob-der Tauber, the most well-preserved town on the Romantic Road. Plunge back into the 16th century as you walk through narrow cobbled streets lined with high-gabled houses to the market square, dominated by its Renaissance Town Hall. With an artisan baker, enjoy a demonstration and learn the history of the traditional pastry Schneeballen (snowball), followed by a tasting. Afterwards, the rest of your day is free to explore the quaint town. For your Dine-Around Evening experience, choose from a selection of restaurants within the walls of the Old Town.
The University City of Heidelberg and Mainz
Stop to meet locals who still make cuckoo clocks by hand, a tradition passed down over 300 years. Then head through the valleys, where villages and isolated farms nestle beside fast-flowing streams, before travelling north to Heidelberg. Visit Heidelberg Palace, or Heidelberger Schloss in German, one of the world's most impressive palace ruins, synonymous with the Romantic Movement. Venture inside to see the Heidelberg Tun, a gigantic wine vat built into the building's cellar in 1591 and able to hold 130,000 litres. Hear its associated tales of the dwarf court jester, Perkeo. Spend time in the vast and insightful Apothecary Museum, before marvelling at the panoramic vistas of the city and Neckar Valley from the castle fortress. Your hotel is in the nearby town of Mainz, a bustling and important town since the time of the Romans.
Castles of the Rhine Experience
Begin the day with a relaxing cruise past steep-sided vineyards, half-timbered taverns, hilltop castles and the infamous Lorelei Rock. Alight at Boppard and continue to Koblenz where a gigantic equestrian statue of Wilhelm I guards the junction of the Rhine and Moselle. Have your camera ready as you return along the eastern bank. Enjoy the scenic views from the mighty Niederwald Monument. In the evening, round off your German experience with a farewell Celebration Dinner overlooking the River Rhine, complete with local wine. Prost!
Auf Wiedersehen Frankfurt
Your journey comes to an end after breakfast with departure transfers arriving at Frankfurt airport at 08:00 and 10:00.
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.
Prices and availability of Optional Experiences are subject to change.