Departure Date: 22/04/2020
Explore Europe's countries and cities while experiencing the best of its history on this discoveries trip. The tring-tring of Dutch bicycles launches your Europe adventure, from picture-perfect Amsterdam and vine-clad hills along the Rhine with its medieval castles, to the open-air museum that is Rome.
The Trafalgar difference:
• Connect with Locals
Eight generations of history with plenty of stories to tell. Enjoy a traditional 'Be My Guest' lunch with the Landi family at their home near Florence, set within a garden of oak trees against the backdrop of Tuscan vineyards and olive groves. (Day 5)
• Dive into Culture
Witness the exquisite craft of glassblowing, a delicate tradition that generations of Venetian craftsmen have perfected over the centuries. (Day 4)
Day 1 London – Eurostar™ – Brussels – Amsterdam
A brief interlude with the British capital this morning sees us meet our Travel Director before travelling to London's St. Pancras International where we will board the Eurostar™ for a high-speed train journey to Brussels and a luxury coach journey to Amsterdam. Enjoy an orientation of this historic Dutch city before joining your fellow travellers and Travel Director for a Welcome Reception dinner cruise on its canals. Hotel - Mercure City. Included Meals - Welcome Reception.
Day 2 Amsterdam – Rhine Cruise – Heidelberg – Rhineland
Driving through the lush landscapes of The Netherlands and Germany, we arrive in Boppard where we board a cruise along the Rhine to St. Goar, passing vineyard-clad hills and medieval castles perched above riverside towns. Arriving in the Baroque city of Heidelberg, we explore its iconic and unexpected highlights before travelling to our Rhineland hotel. Hotel - Sinsheim. Included Meals - Breakfast, Dinner.
Day 3 Rhineland – Innsbruck
We cross the Austrian border next, arriving in Innsbruck, the capital of the Alps. Admire the Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture of the Old Town, including Emperor Maximilian's famous Golden Roof with its ornate façade. Admire the fascinating crystal installations and browse for precious gifts and souvenirs at the Swarovski Crystal Worlds Store and consider an evening of traditional Tyrolean entertainment. Hotel - Innsbruck. Included Meals - Breakfast.
Day 4 Innsbruck – Venice
Journey through the emerald-green landscape along the Brenner Pass into Italy and across the Dolomite Mountains to Venice. We cruise the beautiful Venetian lagoon by private launch to the gateway of Venice, St. Mark's Square. View the ornate Doge's Palace and the Bridge of Sighs, so named for the sound made by condemned prisoners as they took one last longing look at their beautiful city before meeting their fate. Then, 'Dive Into Culture' and witness the centuries-old craft of Venetian glassblowing before spending the afternoon at leisure to soak up the romantic atmosphere. Get lost in Venice, cross bridges and discover hidden campi where locals share their daily stories over a glass of Venetian Spritz. Hotel - Novotel Mestre Castellana. Included Meals - Breakfast.
Day 5 Venice – Rome (2 Nights)
Travel south across the Veneto Plain, passing Bologna and the dramatic Apennine Mountains as well as the green and golden fields of Lazio before reaching Rome, the Eternal City. En route, we 'Connect with Locals' over a 'Be My Guest' lunch and enjoy true Tuscan hospitality with a local family on their private estate in the Chanti countryside. Hotel - A.Roma Lifestyle. Included Meals - Breakfast, Be My Guest.
Day 6 Rome Sightseeing and Free Time
Our first stop today sees us discover the divine beauty of the Vatican City. We'll visit St. Peter's Basilica with a 'Local Specialist' to view Michelangelo's Renaissance masterpiece, the Pietà. We continue to ancient Rome to view the iconic Colosseum and Circus Maximus, once the site of exhilarating chariot races centuries ago. The afternoon is yours to explore the city on your terms. Sit on the Spanish Steps savouring a tasty gelato, shop up a storm on the trendy Via Corso or perhaps join an Optional Experience to see the magnificent frescoed ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Included Meals - Breakfast.
Day 7 Rome – Florence Sightseeing
From Rome, we travel north through the rolling countryside of Tuscany and along the Arno valley to the 'Cradle of the Renaissance', Florence. Delve into the rich Medici heritage of this beautiful medieval city with your 'Local Specialist'. Visit what was once the political hub of the city, Piazza della Signoria, with its impressive sculptures and stunning palazzi. View the imposing Duomo with its Brunelleschi dome and Baptistery renowned for its bronze doors filled with relief sculptures. Hotel - Hilton Metropole. Included Meals - Breakfast.
Day 8 Florence – Lucerne (2 Nights)
Drive via the scenic Italian Lakes District, across the Alps into beautiful Switzerland, where we'll spend the next two nights in the medieval lakeside city of Lucerne in one of Trafalgar's 'Stays With Stories' - the Grand Hotel Europe, with its century-old history. Hotel - Grand Europe. Included Meals - Breakfast, Dinner.
Day 9 Lucerne Orientation and Free Time
This morning, view the mournful, mortally wounded lion hewn from rock to commemorate the Swiss Guards who lost their lives defending Louis XVI. Walk along the flower-lined 14th-century covered Chapel Bridge, crossing the Reuss. Or join an exciting Optional Experience to one of the surrounding peaks for breathtaking views of the Swiss countryside. We have some time later to discover the best Swiss chocolates in town. Included Meals - Breakfast.
Day 10 Lucerne – Paris (2 Nights)
Crossing the border into France this morning, we travel past the picturesque vineyards and country towns of Burgundy en route to the City of Light. Spend some time this evening strolling along the Seine and grand boulevards in search of a cosy bistro for fine French cuisine or consider an Optional Experience to a colourful Parisian cabaret. Hotel - Evergreen Laurel. Included Meals - Breakfast
Day 11 Paris Sightseeing and Free Time
Join a 'Local Specialist' today for a sightseeing tour of this romantic city. View the sophisticated Champs Élysées, Place de la Concorde and the 19th-century Arc de Triomphe, honouring those who fought for France, Notre Dame Cathedral, then enjoy a stroll through the Latin Quarter. Our European Whirl almost at its end, we spend the evening with fellow travellers and our Travel Director, enjoying a Farewell Dinner in a local bistro. Included Meals - Breakfast, Farewell Dinner.
Day 12 Paris – London
Departing mainland Europe, we venture past poignant World War I battlefields to the coast where we board a ferry to Dover and travel by coach on to London where our adventure comes to an end. Included Meals - Breakfast.
Airport transfers on first and last travel day. Conditions apply. 11 Nights’ 4/5* accommodation in the right locations including an extraordinary Stay with Stories, 16 meals including Trafalgar’s exclusive Be My Guest Experience and 4 dinners, The icons you couldn’t miss with VIP access, luxury coaches with wifi on-board, services of a professional Travel Director who share hidden gems and local secrets, local specialists who unlock their home cities from their perspective, all hotel service charges and tips, baggage handling fees and local taxes and choice of optional experience and free time included.
11 Nights from R46,300 pps
These offers are brought to you by Travel Counsellors (Pty) Ltd. Selected departures 22 April 2020 to 15 July 2020. A deposit of R3000 per person is required on booking and the full amount must be paid no later than 60 days for land only guided holidays or 90 days for guided holidays including train or cruise prior to departure from South Africa (whichever comes first). Subject to availability at time of booking and may be withdrawn at any time. Excl. Flights, visas, travel insurance, spending money and items of a personal nature. Offers are per person sharing. Rates for other periods are available on request. Packages are subject to availability, seasonal surcharge; high season supplements and currency fluctuations. Supplier's terms and conditions are available on request. Additional information available on request. Valid for SA residents only. Terms and conditions apply. Prices and information correct at time of publishing. E&OE.