Absolute Eastern- XEU1L
Number of Days: 13
The Eastern Europe region is home to a superb array of cultures, languages, histories and landscapes. You will explore the rich diversity on this 13 day tour .
Day 1 starts with a beautiful drive from London to Amsterdam via the beautiful Belgian city of Bruges. In Amsterdam, we take a dinner cruise on the canal and tell you all there is to know about the famous landmarks and sights. The Dutch countryside awaits on Day 2, and you get the opportunity to explore some more.
On Day 3 and 4 we continue the tour into Germany, visiting Berlin. Explore the city that bursts with energy, education and art on your free day on Day 5. Before heading to Prague, we stop in Dresden, another immaculate and stylish German city. Day 6 is your free day to explore Prague in the Czech Republic! Prague's dramatic history is reflected in the beauty of the architecture of churches, opera houses, concert halls and parks.
Day 7 brings you to the Slovakian capital of Bratislava, and onwards to a walking tour of Vienna - the Austrian city of glorious flamboyance and style. From Vienna to Venice on Day 8, we cover no less than 3 countries today! Take your last look at Austria as you head for Slovenia and the pint-size city of Ljubljana. Day 9 is your free day to discover Venice and just to get lost in the streets, piazzas and alleyways of the city. Continuing on your Italian leg of your Europe tour, the vibe of Venice will suddenly be substituted by the richness of Rome! Day 12 and 13 are yours explore to your heart’s content. The adventure tour concludes after breakfast on Day 13.
With guaranteed departure dates, overnight accommodation and many meals included, this trip covers everything - even free Wi-Fi in all the hotels!
DAY 1: London - Bruges - Amsterdam
Waving goodbye to London, we cross the English Channel and drive through France, then stop off in the ‘Venice of the North’ – Bruges. The Belgian city is a small but picturesque city, with breathtaking medieval architecture. Onwards to the Netherlands, you will notice the landscape change to windmills and waterways, as you approach the city of Amsterdam. Once everyone is checked into the hotel, we'll hop back on the coach and head into the city centre. Your tour leader will take you on an orientation tour of the city centre, followed by an optional walking tour of the Red Light District. Afterwards, you are free to hit the cafes, bars and coffee shops!
DAY 2: Dutch countryside tour
The morning begins with an entertaining demonstration, on how traditional Dutch clogs are made (by hand), followed by a lesson in local cheese making. There is time to pop some clogs on, and taste the cheesy treats. Your next stop for the day is to the historical windmill village of Zaanse Schans, where you will discover how they were vital to industrial development to the Netherlands. This is a great chance to get some fabulous photos! A visit to the quaint sea side village of Volendam allows you to stretch your legs, wander the main street filled with cafes and local nick-nacks and admire the sprawling views. We'll then head back into the centre of the city and enjoy a cruise of the iconic canals with an included lunch. Your afternoon is free to spend as you wish; there are numerous museums and art galleries to choose from - why not visit Anne Frank’s house, the Van Gough museum, take a bicycle tour or simply wander the streets and canals.
DAY 3: Berlin
Today you continue your Europe tour into Germany. The city of Berlin has a positive energy which bursts in every direction. There is an eclectic mix of different music styles and street art - a stark opposite of the lifestyle which was reflected in times when the city was divided into East and West during the Cold War. Although there are constant reminders of the oppression suffered by the German people who were contained within the walls of the city, the modern day version is practically the opposite of this. If you have time before dinner, take a short wander to the river and check out the highly decorated, Berlin Wall. Tomorrow you will have plenty of time to explore the historical aspects of the city, but for now...kick your heels up and relish in the freedom of the night! The bars and clubs are calling your name!
DAY 4: Berlin - Free day
Today, you will be introduced to Berlin on a locally guided walking tour of the city - visiting such poignant locations as the Brandenburg Gate, the Reichstag, Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the Site of Hitler’s Former Bunker, Luftwaffe HQ, 17th June Street, The Berlin Wall, The Former SS Headquarters, and Checkpoint Charlie. Visitors to Berlin are fascinated with the history surrounding the division of the city in to East and West, and significant locations which featured in news bulletins and TV footage of the day. After the walking tour you'll have the rest of the day free to explore the city.
DAY 5: Dresden - Prague
It’s time to bid farewell to Berlin, and ‘Czech’ out Prague, but not before stopping at the German city of Dresden. Virtually rebuilt from the ground up after bombing attacks in WW2 destroyed the city centre, Dresden is immaculate and stylish. Try some of the local German food - such as Bratwurst, and have a wander around the beautifully paved streets. Heading east to the Czech Republic, it is time to get excited about what lies ahead. Prague's historic centre was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992, and your locally guided walking tour will introduce you to many locations, which you will want to explore in more depth on your free day tomorrow. For dinner, experience authentic Czech cuisine at a local restaurant.
DAY 6: Prague - Free day
Treat yourself to the fairy tale magic of Prague - an ancient city that has an essence of youthful inquisitiveness and old world wisdom. Highlights of the day might include the majestic Prague Castle, the famous Charles Bridge (you need to also see the views from the bridge at night - simply stunning...), the ‘Old Town’ and the Jewish Quarter. There is also a ‘Secret Garden’ which leads to a man-made grotto - see if you can find it! The Astronomical Clock in the Old Town Square is a ‘must see’ - the intricate puppetry and show which is performed on the hour, draws hundreds of people throughout the day and night. Prague's dramatic history is reflected in the beauty of the architecture of churches, opera houses, concert halls and parks. There are numerous beer halls in which to sample a local brew, and for those who wish to put your stamp on the city, why not visit legendary Lennon wall - a tribute to John Lennon and words of peace, which is added to on a daily basis by the thousands of visitors to the city.
DAY 7: Bratislava - Vienna
Today, you will continue your tour of Eastern Europe towards the Slovakian capital of Bratislava. Located on the Danube River, the city is a melting pot of numerous nationalities and religions, and so explains the very relaxed and down to earth nature of its residents. After your Bratislavan ‘breather’, you are all set for the Austrian city of Vienna - boasting some of Europe’s most impressive architecture, and a cultural heritage steeped in glorious flamboyance and style. Home to Sigmund Freud, the Vienna Boys’ Choir, a clutch of the worlds most celebrated composers (including Mozart, Beethoven and Brahms), the United Nations, OPEC and Weiner Scnitzel, the city centre has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. Take a glance at the famous Schonbrunn Palace as you approach Vienna, and once you have arrived, explore the centre on your guided walking tour of the city. Taking in the Golden Mile, Imperial Castle and St Stephen’s Cathedral, allow the history to wash over you and marvel at Vienna’s significance in modern and ancient
DAY 8: Ljubljana - Venice
Vienna to Venice - no less than 3 countries today! Take your last look at Austria as you head for Slovenia, and the pint-size city of Ljubljana. A local guide will escort you on a walking tour of this fairy tale city, pointing out the numerous bridges and brilliantly preserved baroque, gothic and medieval architecture. And then... Welcome to Venice! This unique city straddles 118 islands, and is known for its canals, gondolas, Venetian masks, piazzas, art, traditional glass and lace making. On arrival, your tour leader will escort you on an orientation walking tour of the city. Get your cameras ready for the world famous St Marks Square, Grand Canal and Rialto Bridge, and more! You will later have the opportunity to explore Venice the traditional way - from the canals on a gondola ride.
DAY 9: Venice - Free day
The day is yours to explore! The best way to discover Venice is just to get lost in the streets, piazzas and alleyways of the city. Handmade Venetian masks adorn the windows of the local gift shops, along with lace and stunning glass creations. Want to see how they make them? Head to the islands of Murano and Burano for demonstrations of how these traditional art forms are still made today. Once the sun starts to sink, the piazzas fill with hundreds of people, looking to relax at the end of their day. Live music guides you through the streets and over the canals, and if you didn’t try it last night, a gondola ride is surely to be next on tonight’s agenda. Enjoy!
DAY 10: Rome
After a picturesque drive through the Italian countryside, the Italian capital looms. Centuries old Rome will make you feel like you have stepped back in time! The Italian capital buzzes with activity, tradition, passion, and an energy of its own. Your local Roman tour guide can’t wait to introduce you to the locations that make this city so beloved and famous, on an evening walking tour of the city. The Spanish Steps, Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Roman Forum and the Coliseum... just for starters! While at the Trevi Fountain, toss a coin over your shoulder. Legend has it, that you will return to Rome again one day. (What a great investment!) On the way back to your accommodation for the evening, you can start to plan what to do with your free day. Enjoy your meal!
DAY 11: Rome - Free day
The whole day is yours, to explore the ancient city of Rome to your heart’s content. Most of the historical landmarks and ancient Roman structures are located within the city centre so that makes it easier to navigate. (Rome was a much smaller place back when there were emperors and gladiators). Make sure you get an early start at the major attractions, such as the Colosseum, as the queues can get long, and Rome is a popular destination to visit. Want to visit Vatican City and witness Michelangelo’s famous painting on the roof of the Sistine Chapel? Today’s optional excursion is a must! Your tour leader can organise fast tracked tickets for you, and once you are ahead of the queues, you have access to Vatican City - the smallest country in the world! The Sistine Chapel awaits, as does St Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican museums and one of the world’s best private art collections. You never know...maybe the Pope will be in residence! The rest of your day is yours to explore as you wish, and this is the perfect opportunity to return to your favourite landmarks from last night’s walking tour, or indulge traditional Italian fare such as pizza, pasta, vino, espresso and other goodies.Rome - Free day
DAY 12: Rome - Free day
Another free day in in the capital to explore as you wish. This is your opportunity to either catch up on what you have missed, head off on a day trip to somewhere like Pompeii, or simply enjoy a chance to catch your breath and take in the atmosphere of the city. The Italians believe in taking it easy, so why not chill out at a trattoria with some tasty morsels, a cold beverage and some good conversation. This is also the perfect opportunity, to explore the city away from the large crowds. Research some favourite local haunts, or maybe visit the catacombs for something different. Many of our Expat Explorers actually prefer to relax and enjoy the atmosphere for the day. It is up to you. Whatever you do, take your time and don’t rush. That coin you threw in to the Trevi Fountain last night means you will return to Rome someday to catch up on what you may miss this time around.
DAY 13: End of Tour
On the last day of your tour, ensure that you swap numbers with your fellow travellers, before you part ways. The tour concludes after breakfast.
Absolute Eastern- XEU1L
London, England to Rome, Italy
- 12 nights' accommodation in twin rooms with private en-suite facilities. Single travellers have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure a private room.
- 12 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 4 dinners
- All taxes and fees
- Any public transport used as part of the tour (excludes free days)
- Modern air conditioned coach with reclining seats, TV for showing DVDs, and toilet.
- 13 Experiences (including guided walking tours, orientation walks, driving tours of cities plus other exciting experiences)
- From $2396. Single supplement for private room +$765