This trip will include visits to Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Italy, and southern France (Alps areas). Day 1- This evening we will depart for our Alpine Adventure. We will fly from the Minneapolis airport to Frankfurt, Germany. This will be an overnight flight, so try to catch a little shut- eye on the way over the […]
This trip will include visits to Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Italy, and southern France (Alps areas).
Day 1- This evening we will depart for our Alpine Adventure. We will fly from the Minneapolis airport to Frankfurt, Germany. This will be an overnight flight, so try to catch a little shut- eye on the way over the water.
Day 2- We will arrive around noon, go through customs, catch the train, and head to our hotel for the evening in Rudesheim. This is a lovely town in which to enjoy the atmosphere that is exuded by this area.
Day 3- This morning we will take a cruise down the Rhine to pass by at least a dozen castles on the riverbank. If you choose to do so, you may get off and explore one of the castles up close and return to the boat at a later time. We also will pass by the famous Lorelei of song and legend.
Day 4- This morning we will continue on to France for our next overnight. This ride will take us through the Black Forest area. The city we will stay at here, Strasbourg, is a beautiful city on the river with many canals and locks. The church in this city is a hidden gem in our view.
Day 5-We will leave France and continue to Switzerland and the city of Konstanz. This will only be a brief stop as we will continue on back to Germany and the city of Meersburg and the area known as the Bodensee. Meersburg is one of our favorite cities to visit with an on the lake hotel. We have to take a bus ride along the lake from the city of Konstanz and then across Lake Constance (home of Ferdinand Zeppelin) to Meersburg. Upon arrival you will have time to climb the hill to the church and castle at the top (with breath-catching opportunities to shop along the way). There may be live entertainment this evening at the top of the hill as this is a common occurrence.
Day 6- Today we will take a ferry back across Lake Constance to the island of Mainau. Lake Constance touches Germany to the north, Switzerland to the south, and Austria to the east, but the water itself has no borders. It is the third largest lake in Germany and is 824 feet deep. Mainau is a tropical island in the middle of Europe. It is home to oranges, bananas, palm trees, and over 30,000 roses. We should be able to see fall delights of mums, dahlias, and colored trees at this time of year. Upon return you will have time to climb the hill again, if you wish, or relax by the lake.
Day 7- Today we leave the Bodensee as we head to the city of Interlaken. This city is located on two lakes. We will arrive early enough that you will be able to walk around the lakes or sit leisurely as you gaze across the lakes. There often is someone playing a small impromptu concert for those sitting there.
Day 8- This may be your most exciting or interesting day of our trip and it will also be one of the earliest mornings. We will be traveling to the top of the mountain by cable and cogwheel trains. If you have ever watched James Bond on the Eiger, Mönch, and Jungfrau….this is it! It was the first UNESCO natural heritage site of the Alpine region. We will be enjoying the scenery at about 12,000 feet altitude. While at the top of the Jungfrau you will be able to view the area from the Sphinx Terrace and walk through the glacier tunnel which contains ice sculptures. This is the highest railway station in Europe and also the highest post office in Europe. Next we will depart Interlaken and head to Zurich. We will make a stop enroute at one of the most beautiful cities in this area, Lucerne. It has a great farmer’s market twice a week and a unique bridge that is often pictured from this area. The Lucerne Lion Monument is also a popular tourist stop. After spending most of the day in Lucerne, we will head back to the train station and head to our overnight hotel in Chur.
Day 9- Today’s adventure will last all day long on the highest railway tracks in Europe and the steepest in the world. The Bernina Express takes its passengers on a unique journey through 55 tunnels and over 196 bridges. We will travel from Switzerland’s oldest town through wildly romantic gorges, past spectacular man-made structures such as the Landwasser Viaduct, up to the eternal ice of the glaciers and back down to the palm trees in the Italian town of Tirano. We will have about an hour to enjoy lunch in Tirano and then will return to Chur for a second night.
Day 10- This morning we will leave Switzerland and head to the mecca of Bavarian life…Munich, home of Oktoberfest. We will only change trains at this point and continue on to our beautiful city of Mittenwald. You will be sure to enjoy the numerous murals that are painted on many of the homes. This is also a great factory in this city that we will attempt to get tickets to, to watch the making of violins.
Day 11- A trip would not be complete without a visit to at least one of Ludwig’s castles. We will take an all-day side trip first to one of the prettiest castles, the Linderhof. This is the castle where “mad” King Ludwig actually lived. It is a combination of Italian Renaissance and French Rococo style surrounded by lavish gardens and fountains. After a quick tour of this small castle, we will continue on to the better- known castle, Neuschwanstein, of Disney fame. We will spend the afternoon exploring the city of Munich beginning with the Viktualienmarkt, one of the most famous and oldest in Europe dating back to the early 1800s. We also will visit the twin towers of the Marienkirche, the Marienplatz to view the glockenspiel, and perhaps the Olympic Village of 1972. We would like to have our evening meal in the beer hall, the Hofbräuhaus, for food, beer, and Alpine style entertainment, but being in the middle of the festival it would be highly unlikely that we could find one seat let alone one for each of us. This state-owned three floor beer hall was built in the 16th century. Late this afternoon we will depart from the hectic festival and head to Innsbruck for our overnight.
Day 12- We now head to Austria and the home of Mozart and the Sound of Music. After getting a glimpse of the city of Salzburg, we will join a hop on hop off bus to the sights we want to see just outside of the city. The stops that we will get off at include the Hellbrunn Palace. This is a lovely park to visit, which also contains the actual gazebo that was used in the Sound of Music. Another stop will be south (toward the equator, that is) into a salt mine. Be ready to don clothes like a miner and experience life in a salt mine. After “working” in the mine we will be ready to take to the road again to Berchtesgaden and Königsee. If we can get it arranged we hope to get to the top of Hitler’s Eagle Nest. We also will explore the bunker tunnel system in the city built for air raids and that was to be Hitler’s last stand. Königsee is perhaps the most beautiful lake in the Alps. This will be our overnight area tonight.
Day 13- This morning we will take a leisurely boat ride on this lake of no gas motors. Many visitors have compared the appearance to the fjords of Norway. We will take a brief stop at the village of Bartholomew before returning to Konigsee. This is the picture you see on the cover of the brochure. We will stay in this beautiful area for one more night.
Day 14- Today we head back to Salzburg, and then onto a train to continue on to Nuremburg. Nuremburg is currently most famous because of the Nuremberg Trials of the former Nazis. We will see St Lorenz Church, St Sebaldus Church, built of rusty pink sandstone in the 13th century which was heavily bombed during the war as was most of the city, and perhaps the most interesting the Nazi Party Rally Grounds, which covers 11 square kilometers used to demonstrate the National Socialist power to the world. We also will stop at the fantastic Document Museum, which you could spend days at, reading all of the information and watching all of the videos.
Day 15- This morning we will head to our last overnight. We will depart Nuremburg and go to Schwetzingen. This afternoon we will visit a beautiful castle grounds and enjoy our last night on the Alpine Adventure tour.
Day 16- Today we will depart Schwetzingen in time to get to the airport for our departure home. We hope you have pleasant memories of the scenery and activities of the Alps.
This itinerary may change due to train schedules and opening hours of some of the sights during our trip.
The cost of the tour is $ 4250 per person. There is a $500 single supplement if you will not be sharing a room with someone.
More for Le$$ Value with everything below included:
**Sights that will be included follow:
Rhine River cruise
Strasbourg Trolley Ride
Lucerne Chapel Bridge
Lucerne Lion Monument
Jungfrau Top of the World trip
Mainau Island trip
Salzburg Salt Mine
Neuschwanstein Castle tour
Linderhof Castle tour
Nazi Document Museum and Rally Grounds
Schwetzingen Castle Grounds
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