Winter Wonderland

Autumn, Winter, Spring & Christmas Markets

Regional Journey

Winter Wonderland (Winter 2019 2020)

Duration: 9 days Visiting: Germany, Austria, Liechtenstein, Switzerland

Prices from {{lowPrice}}

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

A wonderful tour, visiting the best of Europe's great highlights. At this time of year, nothing could be more enjoyable than rubbing shoulders with the locals, while you snack on homemade gingerbread and sip mulled wine in cosy cafes and colourful Christmas Markets.

  1. Day 1

    Frankfurt and on to Mainz.

    Welcome to Germany. From the Rhine Valley to the Alps, experience lively cosmopolitan cities, historic old towns and breathtaking natural scenery. Transfers from Frankfurt airport to your Mainz hotel depart at 09:30 and 12:30. Mainz has been a bustling and important town since the time of the Romans. Join your Travel Director and fellow guests at 18:00, for a walk through the Cathedral Quarter to witness the magnificent architecture of the city’s Dom. At a local restaurant, enjoy a pleasant evening of good food and wine during your Welcome Dinner.

  2. Day 2

    Rothenburg ob der Tauber and the Romantic Road to Munich.

    Head to fortified Rothenburg ob der Tauber, overlooking the winding Tauber River. Once through the medieval walls, you are immediately transported back into the 16th century, as cobblestone streets lead you to the medieval Market Square with its Town Hall. Perhaps visit Tilman Riemenschneider’s ‘Holy Blood’ altarpiece in St Jakob’s Church or pop into the Christmas shop where you’ll find the festive spirit all year round? Follow parts of the Romantic Road to fun-loving Munich.

  3. Day 3 - Relaxed Start

    The Bavarian Capital of Munich.

    During your orientation you will see Victory Arch and the university, concluding in the Marienplatz with its soaring Gothic Town Hall and colourful Glockenspiel. For those arriving before Christmas, visit the festive Christmas Market and meet a local stallholder for a taste of traditional Lebkuchen and a fragrant cup of Glühwein. The rest of the day is at leisure. Why not try a foaming stein of beer at the world-famous Hofbräuhaus?

  4. Day 4 - Relaxed Start

    Lake Chiemsee to Salzburg.

    Travel alongside the beautiful Lake Chiemsee and cross the Austrian border to Salzburg, ‘alive with the Sound of Music.’ Walk with your Local Expert through the formal gardens of Mirabell Palace and admire the city skyline, crowned by the majestic Hohensalzburg Fortress. Cross the Salzach River to see Mozart’s birthplace on the Getreidegasse, a lively shopping street lined with charming wrought-iron signs. Follow the narrow lanes of the Old Town to the domed cathedral and the splendid Residenz Fountain, before having time at leisure to enjoy as you please. In the evening, perhaps visit an Austrian chalet for dinner, drinks and the opportunity to learn about life in the countryside?

  5. Day 5

    Innsbruck, mountain-ringed Capital of Tyrol.

    A scenic journey takes you through snow-capped mountains to Innsbruck. A multitude of Rococo cherubs and angels will greet you when you venture inside the Wilten Basilica. See the Imperial Palace and magnificent Golden Roof in the Old Town, then loose yourself in the festive atmosphere as you spend some time exploring Innsbruck's magical Christmas Markets. The giant Christmas tree dominates the square and is adorned in lights and decorations. Browse the market stalls, selling handmade trinkets that make perfect gifts for friends and family, along with delicious local treats of home-made biscuits, jams and delicious, soul-warming Glühwein. In the afternoon, meet your coachman and take in the delightful scenery and pure fresh air on a horse-drawn carriage ride, known as a Fiaker. At night, journey to the charming town of Hall in Tirol, which boasts one of Austria's best-preserved historic town centres. Enjoy a medieval highlight banquet set in a 700-year-old building.

  6. Day 6 - Relaxed Start

    Liechtenstein and Lucerne by the Lake.

    Delightful scenery abounds as you make your way to the Arlberg Tunnel. Stop in Vaduz, capital of the Principality of Liechtenstein, one of Europe’s smallest countries. Cross the Swiss border and continue to lakeside Lucerne. Your Travel Director will show you the covered wooden Chapel Bridge and you’ll learn about the poignant history of the Lion Monument. Then you are at leisure to shop for Swiss watches or delicious chocolate.

  7. Day 7

    Lovely Lucerne.

    Start the day with a spectacular cable car ride with incredible views up Mount Pilatus. Back in Lucerne, you are free to admire the superb baroque Jesuit Church, stroll along lakeside promenades, or explore the old walls and watch towers of the medieval fortifications.

  8. Day 8

    Heidelberg, Romance on the Neckar.

    Stop at Schaffhausen to see the Rhine River thundering over the Rhine Falls. Cross the German border and venture deep into the Black Forest. Following the Rhine Valley north, head for the town of Heidelberg, set on the banks of the river Neckar and dominated by its magnificent red sandstone castle. Stroll through the old town with your Travel Director. Perhaps see the old Student Prison? In the evening, enjoy good food, wine and company at your Celebration Dinner.

  9. Day 9

    Depart Frankfurt Airport.

    A transfer to Frankfurt airport’s Terminal 1 arrives at 09:00 and Terminal 2 at 09:15.

Highlights

 

TOP RATED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Christmas Markets: Lose yourself in the festive atmosphere on select departures.
  • Mainz: Witness half-timbered houses and Baroque buildings surrounding the magnificent Dom Cathedral.
  • Rothenburg ob der Tauber: Fortified by ancient walls, picturesque and unspoiled, Rothenburg is a fairytale come true at any time of year. In December it dazzles with its 500-year-old Reiterlesmarkt lending a festive air to the cobbled streets and buildings. See the animated town clock and explore the most well-preserved medieval town in Germany.
  • Munich: During your orientation of the city with your Travel Director, see the Victory Arch, Town Hall and Glockenspiel in Marienplatz.
  • Innsbruck: Visit Wilten Basilica.
  • Innsbruck: During your orientation you will see the Golden Roof and Imperial Palace in the Old Town.
  • Salzburg: Walk through the formal gardens of Mirabell Palace, where the 'Do, Re, Mi' scene was filmed for 'The Sound of Music.' Your Local Expert will also show you Mozart’s birthplace on the Getreidegasse, the domed cathedral and the splendid Residenz Fountain.
  • Innsbruck: Meet your coachman and enjoy a delightful horse-drawn carriage ride, surrounded by the mountains and valleys of Tyrol.
  • Vaduz: Admire the Royal family’s residence, Vaduz Castle, which overlooks the capital and is surrounded by year-round snow peaked mountains.
  • Lucerne: A spectacular journey by cable car to the summit of Mount Pilatus offers expansive mountain views over Lake Lucerne.
  • Lucerne: See the covered wooden bridges, Lion Monument, Jesuit Church and Chapel Bridge.
  • Rhine Falls: Visit these spectacular falls.
  • Heidelberg: See the red sandstone castle and explore the baroque Old Town with your Travel Director.
  • Scenic Drives: Venture along part of Germany’s Romantic Road and past Lake Chiemsee, through the Arlberg region and the scenic Black Forest, past Walensee Lake in Switzerland.

AUTHENTIC DINING

  • Munich: At the Christmas Market, meet a local stallholder and taste the delicious Lebkuchen with a fragrant cup of Glühwein, available on trips that visit Munich Christmas Market.
  • Hall in Tirol: Perfectly situated in a 700-year-old building in the charming town of Hall in Tirol, savour a medieval banquet of Austrian specialties with wine.
  • Heidelberg: Toast the culmination of your travels at a rousing Celebration Dinner with wine.
  • Dining Summary: 8 Breakfasts (B) and 4 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee. Departures travelling over Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve will enjoy festive Highlight Dinners which will replace an included meal.

STAY IN STYLE

  • Mainz: The Hilton Mainz is a traditional hotel set in an ideal location to explore the historic Old Town.
  • Munich: The Westin Grand Munich is a modern hotel located in the fashionable Bogenhausen district.
  • Lucerne: Set in a stunning location, the modern Hotel Astoria offers three award-winning restaurants and a rooftop garden, lounge and bar.

INCLUDED INSIGHT SERVICES

  • Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
  • 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. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
  • If your arrival and/or departure flights are as per the itinerary start and end dates, then transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times, or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or 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 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.

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

Linderhof and Oberammergau

South of Munich, we'll venture from the magnificence of the Bavarian Alps to the world-renowned passion-play village of Oberammergau. Admire the artistically - decorated architecture of local homes, churches and of Ettal Monastery. Then, we're on to mad King Ludwig’s baroque fantasy - the rococco splendour of Linderhof castle, set in beautiful gardens.

Adult Price: EUR 40.00

Code: MUN0003

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

Nordkette Alps & Heritage

A visit to the Nordkette is an unforgettable experience - a unique combination of relaxation, natural wonder and modern architecture. Space-age stations designed by star architect, Zaha Hadid herald your journey up to Hungerburg. From here the panoramic gondola continues up to the 1,905-metre-high Seegrube, where (weather permitting) you can enjoy tremendous views of the entire Central Inn Valley and across to the Italian border. Back down in the Old Town, join your local expert to explore the heritage of the Golden Roof and the "Black Men" of Emperor Maximilian.

Adult Price: EUR 54.00

Code: INN0004

Secret Switzerland

Incredibly, Switzerland provides all its citizens protection in case of nuclear disaster or war. Go behind the scenes for a unique tour of one of the world's biggest civilian fallout shelters! Cold War secrets of the Swiss will be revealed by our expert guide.

Adult Price: CHF 46.00

Code: LUC0004

Lake Lucerne Happy Hour Cruise

Widely considered to be the loveliest of the mountain lakes, much of the shoreline of Lake Lucerne can only be fully appreciated from the water. Admire the spectacular homes of the fortunate few, privileged to live on its scenic shores, as we cruise gently by. Two drinks will be served during the trip.

Adult Price: CHF 49.00

Code: LUC0005

Accommodation

 

Hilton Mainz

Mainz (Contemporary) - Germany

A traditional hotel set in an ideal location to explore the historic Old City.

The Westin Grand Munich Hotel

Munich (Traditional) - Germany

The Westin Grand Munich is a modern hotel located in the fashionable Bogenhausen district.

Hotel Europa Salzburg.

Salzburg (Contemporary) - Austria

AC Hotel Innsbruck

Innsbruck (Contemporary) - Austria

The AC Hotel Innsbruck is centrally located and just a few minutes walk from the Old Town. It was originally built in 1972 for the Winter Olympic games and has since been completely refurbished and upgraded to offer comfortable, sleek-designed rooms, each with views of the surrounding Alps.

Hotel Astoria

Lucerne (Contemporary) - Switzerland

This hotel is sat in the middle of all Lucerne has to offer, with magnificent mountains and astonishing culture.

Crowne Plaza Heidelberg City Centre

Heidelberg (Contemporary) - Germany

Located in the heart of the city and just a short drive from Altstadt, the city's old town, is the Crowne Plaza Heidelberg City Centre. Your traditional-style room is comfortable and includes free WiFi to stay in touch with friends and family.

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.5 out of 5 based on
11520 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 17 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: had the best time of my life want to do another one

    Service: our tour guide Betty was amazing friendly knew what she was talking about always helpfuland alsways made you feel welcome from day one would go on another tour insight vacations if Betty was the tour guide

  • 14 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Our trip was a true Winter Wonderland. The horse drawn carriage ride through the Austrian Forest was beautiful. The snow fall was an added bonus for our fellow travelers who have never experienced snow.

    Service: I believe that the tour director and the bus driver make or break a trip. On our trip both were outstanding. Thank you Carl and Romulus.

  • 14 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Brilliant places to have visited.

    Service: I would definitely travel with insight again. Carl the tour director was amazing and made the trip absolutely enjoyable

  • 08 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I love the snow. I can build snow man and snow angel

    Service: Its better than the other tours I have been to... After been through horrible experiences, I been self driving but decide to give tour another chance and it turn out well.

  • 07 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I think that in this type of a trip is better to end in the city that we started, so that if we need to leave early its easier to manage the transportation requirements

    Service: the service was really good overall, but I had requested to have two beds in all of the hotels that we went, when I got to the first destination, Heinz informed me that that was not communicated to the trip organizer but he took care of it.

  • 07 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: very beautiful and activities was very well organized

    Service: Information was always ready.

  • 05 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Insight Vacations always deliver more than expected.

    Service: Our TD Ebony was excellent. She was very knowledgeable about all of the locations, and she was very caring and friendly. Our Bus Driver Pal safely navigated us throughout the trip (even on rain and snow days). He too was very caring and friendly.

  • 05 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: My only complaint is we visited Oberammergau on a Sunday. All the shops were closed but a few cafes were open. The tour director gave us 90 minutes to visit. Since everything was closed, 30 minutes would have been more than adequate.

    Service: Ebony was an excellent tour director. She kept us informed and was very organized. Provided lots of insight to the areas we visited and several extra treats from the region we were visiting. Wonderful trip!~

  • 05 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Loved the pace, places, Christmas markets and staff. The carriage ride through woods was magical.

    Service: Loved our Christmas trip to Austria, Germany and Switzerland. Excellent tour guide, Ebony, and driver, Pal. Knowledgeable and personable.

  • 04 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Amazing Winter wonderland tour.

    Service: Insight vacations was an awesome experience for myself and my son.

  • 03 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Betty our tour director was amazing. Would highly recommend them.

    Service: Betty our tour director was amazing. Would highly recommend them.

  • 03 January, 2019

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Promised Snow and Christmas Markets, all delivered, fabulous.

    Service: The itinerary included a lot of different experiences, was well run, always on time, allowed for variations when necessary and generally very efficient.

*Trip prices and dates are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. Prices displayed reflect available discounted rates such Early Payment Discount or Last Minute Deals (discounts are not combinable). Discounts may be withdrawn at anytime, book early to confirm space. 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.