Highlights of Europe start Amsterdam (Winter 2019 2020)
- Heidelberg: Revel in the merriment as you raise a stein and feast on local German specialties in a beer hall-style restaurant. Prost!
- Veneto: Delight in a prosecco tasting with the expert vignerons at a local family winery and learn the secret to making the perfect Bellini.
- Rome: Food and family go hand in hand in Italy and are pillars of the Italian way of life. Experience it for yourself with an invitation from your local EatWith host to join them for a truly Italian, home-cooked meal.
- Italian Lake District: Choose your dining experience from a selection of hand-picked local restaurants, each offering their own unique cuisine and ambience on your Dine-Around Evening.
- Tuscany: Savour homemade cuisine at a family-style dinner with fresh ingredients prepared to traditional recipes, set among the beautiful Tuscan countryside.
- Paris: Meet a local foodie for a behind-the-scenes look into Parisian life. Sample some local delicacies in a pâtisserie, boulangerie, fromagerie and chocolatier on a gourmet walking tour that takes you off the beaten track.
- Paris: Rendezvous at Le Petit Prince de Paris, an atmospheric French bistro that believes 'There is no love more sincere than that of good food'. Your Celebration Dinner offers home-style cooking, using local ingredients and is accompanied by delicious French wines.
- Dining Summary: 13 Breakfasts (B) and 6 Dinners with Wine (DW) all tea or coffee.
- Rhine Valley: Delight in a private estate viewing of one of these Rhineland castles and learn more about these living cultural monuments situated along the Middle Rhine.
- Venice: Witness the ancient skill of glassblowing and watch artisans create delicate works of art.
- Venice: Learn how the Venetian gondola is made on a visit to a traditional arts centre.
- Vatican City: Enjoy VIP fast-track entry into the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel, as well as exclusive access to the Bramante Staircase that is usually not open to the public. During your visit to St Peter's Basilica, see Michelangelo's 'Pieta' and Bernini's intricately carved Papal Altar.
Stay at the Best Addresses
- Rome: The 19th century Bettoja Hotel Massimo D'Azeglio contains many original paintings from the 1860s.
- Florence: Hotel Londra is an elegant hotel situated right in the heart of Florence.
- Lucerne: The Hotel Astoria is sat in the middle of all Lucerne has to offer, with magnificent mountains and astonishing culture.
- Paris: The Paris Marriott Rive Gauche Hotel is located on the Left Bank of the Seine River near the Latin Quarter and Saint-Germain-des-Pres. Recently renovated, this modern property offers luxurious bedding in all rooms.
Top Rated Highlights
- Eurostar: Relax on the smooth, high-speed Eurostar train from London via the Channel Tunnel.
- Amsterdam: Cruise in a glass-topped boat through the old waterways, where the wealthy merchants built mansions during the Golden Age of the 17th century.
- Heidelberg: See the red sandstone castle and explore the baroque Old Town with your Travel Director.
- Innsbruck: Walk the narrow streets of the Old Town, lined with medieval houses and arcades, to see the Golden Roof and Imperial Palace.
- Venice: With your Travel Director cruise to St. Mark's Square and see the Doge's Palace, Bridge of Sighs and St. Mark's Basilica.
- Rome: See the mighty Colosseum and Roman Forum as well as other medieval buildings, Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches, scattered through the city.
- Florence: Join a Local Expert to view the multi-coloured marble cathedral, bell tower and baptistery, adorned by Ghiberti's Gates of Paradise. Visit the political heart of the city, Signoria Square. See the area around Santa Croce Basilica, famous for the quality of its luxury goods.
- Lucerne: View the emotive Lion Monument and walk the covered Chapel Bridge to see the Jesuit Church.
- Mount Pilatus: Enjoy a spectacular journey to the summit of Mount Pilatus to witness a panorama of snow-capped peaks as you take in the pristine mountain air.
- Paris: See the many attractions Paris has to offer such as Notre Dame Cathedral, the Eiffel Tower, facades of the Louvre, the River Seine and its romantic bridges, the obelisk in the centre of the Place de la Concorde and enjoy a drive along the Champs-Élysées to the Arc de Triomphe.
- Scenic Drives: Throughout your journey, enjoy the scenery as you drive along the Romantic Road and later pass the areas of Tyrol, the Dolomites, Veneto, Apennine Mountains, Tuscany, Umbria, the Chianti Hills, Italian Lake District, the Swiss Alps and Burgundy.
You will visit the following 5 places:
Switzerland, officially the Swiss Confederation, is a federal republic in Europe. While still named the Swiss Confederation for historical reasons, modern Switzerland is a federal directorial republic consisting of 26 cantons, with Bern as the seat of the federal authorities, called '"federal city". Situated in Western-Central Europe, Switzerland is also a landlocked country geographically divided between the Alps, the Swiss Plateau and the Jura. Spanning the intersection of Germanic and Romance Europe, Switzerland comprises four main linguistic and cultural regions: German, French, Italian and Romansh. Although the majority of the population are German speaking, Swiss national identity is rooted in a common historical background, shared values such as federalism and direct democracy, and Alpine symbolism. One of the most developed countries in the world, Switzerland ranks at or near the top globally in several metrics of national performance, including government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic competitiveness, and human development. Its cities contain medieval quarters, with landmarks like capital Bern’s Zytglogge clock tower and Lucerne’s wooden chapel bridge. The country is also known for its ski resorts and hiking trails.
Misunderstood by many, Germany is one of the most unique and charming countries on the continent. Since reunification Germany has at last gained a higher profile as a place to visit, thanks partly to the remarkable resurgence of its capital, Berlin, one of the most fascinating and exciting cities in Europe. It's no surprise at all that today’s Germany is more diverse and cosmopolitan than old stereotypes suggest; mixing time-honoured nationalism and tradition with multicultural modernism and self-confidence.
Austria is a German-speaking federal republic and a landlocked country of over 8.66 million people in Central Europe. It is characterized by its mountain villages, baroque city architecture, Imperial history and rugged alpine terrain. Vienna, its Danube River capital, is home to the Schonbrunn and Hofburg palaces, and has counted Mozart, Strauss and Sigmund Freud among its residents. The country’s other notable regions include the northern Bohemian Forest, Lake Traun and eastern hillside vineyards.
Italy is a country in Southern Europe. It is home to the greatest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the world. Much like its food, this country is an endless feast of experiences. It is famous worldwide for its delicious cuisine, its trendy fashion industry, luxury sports cars and motorcycles, diverse regional cultures and dialects, as well as for its beautiful coast, alpine lakes and mountain ranges (the Alps and Apennines). There is also the country’s enormous cultural legacy: Tuscany alone has more classified historical monuments than any country in the world; there are considerable remnants of the Roman Empire all over the country, notably in Rome itself; and every region retains its own relics of an artistic tradition generally acknowledged to be among the world’s richest.
France has been the world's most popular tourist destination for over twenty years. It received 83 million visitors in 2012, although these figures are highly skewed by the number of people who frequent the country for the weekend, particularly to visit Disneyland Paris, Europe's most popular visitor attraction. All these people come to France for many a reason: its cities contain some of the greatest treasures on the continent, its countryside is prosperous and well-tended and it boasts dozens of major tourist attractions. France is one of the most geographically diverse countries in Europe, containing areas as different from each other as urban chic Paris, the sunny French Riviera, long Atlantic beaches, the winter sports resorts of the French Alps, the castles of the Loire Valley, rugged Celtic Brittany and the historian's dream that is Normandy. The country seduces travellers with its unfalteringly familiar culture, woven around cafe terraces, village-square markets and lace-curtained bistros with their plat du jour chalked on the board. France citizens enjoy a high standard of living, and the country performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, civil liberties, and human development.