The Best of Germany (2013)

The Best of Germany (2013)


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Itinerary

Tour Itinerary

Be captivated by the old world charm of Rothenburg and Nuremberg, the mountain scenery of Bavaria and the amazing re-birth of Dresden to its former baroque splendour. Tour Pace - Comfortable: Driving days are not long and there are two-night stays in both Munich and Berlin, but with so much packed into this itinerary, time will appear to pass quite quickly. Essentially, it's a well planned tour to allow you to experience the very best Germany has to offer in just over a week.

Day 1 Depart USA
Board your overnight flight (not included).

Days 2-3 The Spirit of Berlin
Welcome to a journey of cosmopolitan cities, historic old towns and breathtaking natural scenery. On arrival at Berlin’s Tegel Airport, airport transfers leave for the hotel at 10:30 & 12:30. Why not walk along the bustling ‘Ku-damm’, the shopping centre of West Berlin which during 40 years of division, became the shop window of the West. Early evening, meet your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception, drinks and a light meal. In the morning, a guided sightseeing tour takes you along the Unter den Linden past the Humboldt University and Opera. Stop a while on Museum Island before passing the Brandenburg Gate, symbol of the reunification. See Norman Foster’s glass-dome which crowns the reconstructed Reichstag building before a pleasant drive through the Tiergarten. Spend the afternoon at leisure in this once divided city or explore the new vibrant Potsdamer Platz.(Welcome Reception)
Marriott

Day 4 Dresden, a Baroque Phoenix on the Elbe
Hear about Hitler and the legendary German autobahn network this morning as you travel south to Dresden. Join a 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 façade. You also see the enormous cathedral, Semper Opera House and baroque Zwinger Palace.(Buffet Breakfast)
Westin Bellevue Dresden

Day 5 Bayreuth and Medieval Rothenburg
Stop a while this morning in the village of Mödlareuth, straddling the former East/West German border. Here remains part of the border strip, complete with concrete wall, barbed wire and watchtower. Now on past the pine-clad Fichtelgebirge massif to Bayreuth. See the Wagner Festival Theatre and the new and old castles before continuing through wooded Swiss Franconia, passing rocky crags and ‘Hansel and Gretl’ style villages. Your destination is 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. This evening, you are offered a selection of restaurants to choose from for your dining pleasure.(Buffet Breakfast / Dine Around)
Rappen PrinzHotel

Days 6-7 Nuremberg and Munich, and the Jewels of the Bavarian Alps
It’s only a short drive to Nuremberg, still entirely enclosed by its fortifications. Witness the charming blend of stone and timbered dwellings in the Old Town as well as the massive ramparts. Perhaps shop for delicious Lebkuchen before crossing the Danube to reach fun-loving Munich. An orientation tour shows you the Olympic Stadium, university, Victory Arch and ends in the Marienplatz, where crowds gather at the Town Hall to watch the antics of the Glockenspiel. Tonight, perhaps consider a lively evening at one of Munich’s famous ‘Bier Kellers’? In the morning travel into the Bavarian Alps to the village of Oberammergau, home since 1634 of the Passion Play. See the immense Theatre and colourfully-painted chalets, then continue along part of the Alpine Road amidst beautiful scenery to the Wieskirche, a masterpiece of Bavarian rococo. Now to the ‘fairy tale’ castle Neuschwanstein, perched on a spectacular Alpine mountainside. This was Ludwig II’s favourite castle, though he spent little time here before his death. Visit exuberantly decorated apartments, including the Throne Room and Lohengrin Grotto. Return to Munich where you are at leisure.(Buffet Breakfast / Buffet Breakfast)
Westin Grand Arabellapark

Day 8 Lovely Lake Constance and the Black Forest
Travel through lush, rolling dairy country to Lindau, an island in Lake Constance connected to the mainland by a causeway. Stroll through the narrow streets with their old inns and half-timbered houses and admire the fantastic backdrop of the Swiss and Austrian Alps across the lake. Now a delightful drive along the shores of Lake Constance, lined with orchards and vineyards, to the Black Forest. Your hotel is nestled amid the trees alongside the clear waters of Lake Titisee.(Buffet Breakfast / Dinner)
Maritim Titisee

Days 9-10 Heidelberg, Mainz and the Castles of the Rhine
The Black Forest! Land of cherry cake and cuckoo clocks, where traditional farmhouses dip their thatched roofs almost to the ground. Stop awhile in one of the centres of the wood-carving industry. Then through the valleys where villages and isolated farms nestle beside fast flowing streams before joining the motorway north to Heidelberg. Enjoy the view from the heights of the castle fortress before a guided visit. See the Great Wine Vat, with its associated tales of the dwarf court jester, Perkeo! Your hotel is in the nearby town of Mainz. Begin the next day with a relaxing cruise past steep sided vineyards, half-timbered taverns, the hilltop castles and the notorious 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. Cameras at the ready as you return along the eastern bank. Enjoy the scenic views from the mighty Niederwald Monument. This evening, round off your tour with a farewell Celebration Dinner complete with wine. Prost!(Buffet Breakfast / Buffet Breakfast / Celebration Dinner)
Hilton Mainz

Day 11 Return to USA
Your tour comes to an end after breakfast today. Departure transfers arrive at Frankfurt Airport at 08:00 and 10:00.(Buffet Breakfast)

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Inclusions

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Berlin: Drive along the Unter den Linden past the Humboldt University and Opera. See the Brandenburg Gate and Reichstag building.
  • Dresden: See the Frauenkirche, mosaic mural, Opera House and Zwinger Palace.
  • Mödlareuth: See the towers and fortifications
  • Bayreuth: Visit this famous musical city.
  • Rothenburg-ob-der Tauber: Explore the most well-preserved medieval town in Germany.
  • Nuremberg: See the city walls and tour the old town.
  • Munich: See the Olympic Stadium, Marienplatz, Town Hall and Glockenspiel.
  • Bavarian Alps: See Oberammergau's Passion Play Theatre. Visit the Wieskirche, a masterpiece of Bavarian rococo.
  • Lindau: Cross the causeway to this delightful island town.
  • Black Forest: Hear about the origins and artisan manufacture of the cuckoo clock. Enjoy a scenic drive.
  • Rhine Valley: See the Deutsches Eck Monument in Koblenz. Enjoy the scenic vista from the Niederwald Monument.

PREMIUM EXPERIENCES AND DINING

  • Visit the archetypal fairy-tale castle that allegedly inspired Walt Disney. Walk through the magnificent halls of Neuschwanstein, take in the lavish decoration, and enjoy the verdant mountain views.
  • Climb up to the magnificent Heidelberg Castle built in red sandstone overlooking the Student Prince’s town. Stride through the gardens, gate house, courtyard and terrace, commanding a wonderful panoramic view over the old town and the Neckar River.
  • Cruise beneath the semi-ruined castles and terraced vineyards of the narrow Rhine Valley. Sleepy villages slip by as you saunter upstream to the Lorelei Rock where the enchantress lured sailors to their doom.
  • You are offered a selection of Rothenburg’s restaurants to choose from on your Dine-Around evening.
  • Tantalise your taste-buds and toast to the culmination of your Germanic journey during a Celebration Dinner.

PREMIUM HOTELS AND LOCATIONS

  • Munich's Westin Grand Arabellapark offers elegant rooms and spa facilities with excellent city centre transport connections.
  • The two hotels in Rothenburg are full of character and tradition, located directly next to the historic town walls, just a short stroll through cobbled lanes to the Old Town sights.
  • While the Maritim boasts a peaceful setting on the shores of Lake Titisee.

INCLUDED FIRST CLASS SERVICES

  • Escorted by a professional Tour Director
  • Headsets for all guided visits and walking tours
  • Enjoy the unique comfort of Insight's Luxury air-conditioned 40 seat coach with extended leg room and on-board restroom
  • Insight Hotels include all service charges, taxes and porterage
  • Airport transfers at scheduled times on Day 2 and Day 11 (Should your flights not coincide with these transfers, please make your own way to/from the airport)

INCLUDED QUALITY DINING

  • A Welcome Reception with light informal meal (WR)
  • 9 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 1 Dine-Around Dinner (DA), 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) and 1 three-course table d'hôte Dinner, or Buffet, plus tea or coffee (D)

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