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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.
Your Journey Begins
Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).
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.
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.
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.
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.
(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.
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.
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.
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.
Vienna (Central) - Austria
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 (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.
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.
4 out of 5
11/17/2015 Alice Sima, Downers Grove, United States
The entire trip was very well managed by Irina. She was there at the airport and eagerly got us to the hotel in Vienna. We had a small group of 14 which made for good conversation and enjoyment. Budapest was a wonderful stay and great tours. Short stay in Bratislava and Cesy Krumlov. Prague is a big city. Prague entertainment with dinner and dancing - very good. Saw the clock. Tour guide in Prague was very entertaining. Farewell dinner and Concert in Vienna great way to end the tour.
5 out of 5
1/5/2015 Shiyamala Punniamoorthy, Strathfield, Australia
Really enjoyed the well organized tour with very good tour guide and fellow tourists
4 out of 5
12/15/2014 Delwyn Nunn, Woorree, Australia
Another excellent tour.Usuall high standard of hotels,great well informed guides, well chosen sights to visit. Would not hesitate to book another trip in the future!
5 out of 5
12/14/2014 Albert Paran, Cebu City, Philippines
It was the best travel and tour in my 15 years of International Travel around the world. It is only with Insight Vacations. I have seen the most beautiful and breathtaking sceneries that I have only seen in films, pictures and magazines. My deep gratitude to our Tour Director Judit for all her help and for assisting me in times that I need her help and to our gorgeous master driver George for our safety and most enjoyable trip.
5 out of 5
12/13/2013 Julie Marino, Ivanhoe, Australia
Fantastic tour which gave you a little taste of each city. Terry the tour director was very good and was very knowledgeable regards anything to do with the tour.