Romantic European start Amsterdam (Summer 2018)
Brochure Type: Europe 2018
One of our Tour Director's favourite itineraries, this tour is full of charm and splendour. With two nights spent in most cities, take the time to get to know each destination and uncover its secrets, whether it is mouth-watering Sachertorte over coffee in Vienna or delicious homemade pasta in Orvieto. Along the way you'll be welcomed by passionate locals who love showing you the best Europe has to offer. You're invited for a culinary feast at the home of a local in beautiful Budapest, one of Europe's best kept secrets. Hosted in the underground cellar of Machiavelli's home, you'll have the chance to taste delicious Tuscan wines known for their robust flavours and rich heritage. Delight in a gourmet walking tour of Paris, during which you'll taste local delicacies from a patisserie, boulangerie, fromagerie and chocolatier
- Amsterdam: Toast to the travels ahead during your Welcome Dinner of modern European cuisine at Humphrey's Restaurant Spuistraat, a trendy eatery located in the heart of the city and surrounded by 17th century homes.
- Tuscany: Enjoy a tasting of locally-made wines and sample delicious Tuscan snacks in the underground cellar of Machiavelli's home. While here you will visit the Italian gardens and be privy to a private opening of the of?ce where he wrote 'The Prince.'
- Lucerne: Choose from a selection of restaurants on your Dine-Around Evening and hand-pick your preferred ambience, cuisine and drinks for an intimate culinary experience.
- Paris: Meet a local foodie for a behind-the-scenes look into Paris and try some local delicacies in a patisserie, boulangerie, fromagerie and chocolatier on an off-the-beaten-track, gourmet walking tour.
- Paris: Rendezvous at Le Petit Prince de Paris, an atmospheric French bistro, with the motto 'There is no love more sincere than that of good food'. Your Celebration Dinner offers home-style cooking with traditional French ingredients, and of course accompanied by delicious French wines.
- Budapest: Experience authentic dining alongside passionate locals as you join your EatWith host for dinner.
- Orvieto: At a restaurant in the medieval heart of Orvieto, explore the art of Italian cooking with Chef Lorenzo and observe how he makes fresh pasta by hand. Afterwards, enjoy a Highlight Lunch paired with a glass of Orvieto Classico wine.
- Vienna: Traditional coffeehouses are still a meeting place for philosophers and storytellers. Feast on delicious Viennese specialities alongside a local who will share tales from a by-gone era.
- Venice: Savour dinner at a local restaurant and then enjoy a short stroll to St Mark's Square at twilight. Sip Bellini cocktails alongside the canals, while being serenaded by an ensemble of talented musicians and soak up the calming atmosphere long after the day-trippers have returned to their mainland hotels.
- Dinning Summary: 17 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 1 Morning Tea (MT), 1 Lunch with Wine (LW), 1 Afternoon Tea (AT) and 6 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.
- Vatican City: Be among the select few to enjoy VIP access to the Vatican Museums and see the Bramante Staircase and Michelangelo's ceiling in the Sistine Chapel.
- Stanserhorn: Journey to the summit of Mount Stanserhorn where you will learn about local wildlife from a Swiss Ranger.
- Rhine Valley: The beautiful scenery of the Rhine River is supplemented by the many castles dotted along its banks. Delight in a private estate viewing at one of these Rhineland castles and learn more about these living cultural monuments situated along the Middle Rhine.
- Rothenburg: Rothenburg-ob-der Tauber, the most well-preserved town on the Romantic Road. With an artisan baker, enjoy a demonstration and learn the history of the traditional pastry Schneeballen (snowball), followed by a tasting.
- Prague: Bewitched by the gargoyles of St. Vitus Cathedral and ghosts of Bohemian Kings, this majestic city is where you'll join a Local Expert on a private guided tour through the courtyards of Prague Castle.
- Budapest: Visiting the Central Market Hall is a foodie's dream. Accompanied by your Local Expert, wander three levels of stalls, brimming with mouthwatering salamis, spicy paprika, Hungarian wines and a whole lot of Palinka.
- Venice: Witness the ancient skill of glassblowing and watch artisans create delicate works of art.
- Venice: Meet a gondolier and learn about the age-old tradition of gondola navigation.
- Prague: The brand new, boutique-style Hotel Royal Prague is a short drive from Old Town Square, set across from the Vltava River. It offers quiet and comfortable rooms, perfect for your two-night stay.
- 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.
- Amsterdam: Cruise in a glass-topped boat through the city's historic waterways, where wealthy merchants built mansions during the Golden Age of the 17th century.
- Vienna: Walk through the first district, Inner Stadt, as your Local Expert reveals why this is the historic core of the city. You will also tour the Ring Road to see the Hofburg Imperial Residence, Opera House, Parliament Building and Karlskirche.
- Budapest: Spend some time in the popular pedestrian shopping street of Vaci Utca. From the heights of Gellert Hill, in front of the Citadella, see the mighty Danube with its many bridges linking Buda and Pest.
- Lucerne: View the emotive Lion Monument and walk the covered Chapel Bridge to see the Jesuit Church when you explore with your Travel Director.
- Orvieto: Visit this pleasant Umbrian hilltop town.
- Paris: See 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 Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe.
- Rome: See the mighty Colosseum and Roman Forum as well as other medieval buildings, Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches, scattered through the city.
- Scenic Drives: Throughout your journey, enjoy the scenery as you drive along the Romantic Road and later pass the areas of Bohemia, the Carinthian Lake District, Tuscany, Umbria, the Chianti Hills, the Swiss Alps, the Italian Lake District and Burgundy.
- 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.
- Wurzburg: See the Residenz Palace as you explore the old town with your Travel Director. Stand on the statue-lined Alte Mainbrucke and see the Marienburg fortress.
- Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
- Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
- Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
- We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
- Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
- Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
- From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
- You may purchase arrival transfers from London Heathrow and Gatwick airports on arrival days, or when additional nights accommodation has been booked through Insight Vacations. If your departure flights are as per the itinerary end dates, departure transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way to the airport. Alternatively, please make your own way from/to the airport.
Call (281) 438-1139 for more information or to book today! Mention code 13867171
- Tour Operator
- Insight Vacations
- Offer valid through 6/30/2018
- 19 Days
- Escorted - Yes
|Day 1||Your Journey Begins||Your Journey Begins: Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).|
|Day 2||Amsterdam||Welcome to Amsterdam.: Meet your Travel Director at 17:00 for a Welcome Reception. Get to know your fellow guests during a cruise, along some of the many quaint, tree-lined canals. Admire the elegant merchant houses from the 16th and 17th centuries, their facades are a reflection of when trade flourished during Amsterdam's Golden Age. Relax as you pass stunning gables, beautiful churches and the iconic Magere Brug, better known as the Skinny Bridge. Disembark and venture to a local restaurant for your Welcome Dinner. (Dinner with Wine)|
Grand Hotel Amrath Amsterdam.
|Day 3||Wurzburg||Legends along the Rhine.: Cross into Germany and head for the romantic Rhine Gorge. Visit a castle set upon the Rhine, for a private estate viewing with the owner. Unlock the secrets of Rhineland's modern kings and queens as you learn the history of the castle and surrounding area. Continue to Wurzburg where there is time to stroll through the heart of the Old Town and down to the Alte Mainbrucke, the 16th century bridge over the River Main, adorned with sandstone statues. From here, admire the city at night and appreciate the mighty Marienburg Fortress on the opposite side of the river. (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)|
Maritim Hotel Wurzburg.
|Day 4||Prague||Rothenburg and Golden Prague.: In the morning, see the Residenz Palace - the immense baroque palace of the Prince Bishops and one of the most important landmarks in Germany. Venture to Rothenburg-ob-der Tauber, the most well-preserved town on the Romantic Road. With an artisan baker, enjoy a demonstration and learn the history of the traditional pastry Schneeballen (snowball), followed by a tasting. Continue east to the Czech border. Pass through the town of Pilsen, renowned for its beer before reaching the Golden City of Prague. With the afternoon free, perhaps take a river cruise through the heart of the city, rummage through the renowned antique shops or shop for the finest Bohemian crystal. (Buffet Breakfast)|
Hotel Royal Prague.
|Day 5||Prague||Prague, City of a Hundred Spires.: Join a Local Expert in the morning for guided sightseeing of one of the most beautiful and intact historical centres in Europe. Start with the 1,000-year-old Prague Castle, to admire the stained glass of St. Vitus Cathedral and enjoy amazing views over the Old Town. Finish in the Old Town Square where the mechanical antics of the Astronomical Clock's glockenspiel that delights onlookers each hour. Then, the city is all yours to explore with the rest of the day at leisure. (Buffet Breakfast)|
Hotel Royal Prague.
|Day 6||Budapest||Through Bohemia to Budapest.: Start the day with a journey through the beautiful forested countryside of Bohemia. Journey through Slovakia and travel on to Hungary, following the River Danube to Budapest. Stand atop Gellert Hill where the colossal Liberty Statue is positioned in front of the Citadella watching over the city. Marvel at extensive panoramic views as you look out over the famous river dividing Buda and Pest - the two sides linked by the mighty Chain Bridge and the newer, elegant Elizabeth Bridge. With the afternoon free, perhaps join a cruise along the Danube to see the city from a different perspective. In the evening, enjoy an authentic dinner with your local EatWith host. (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)|
Hotel President, Budapest.
|Day 7||Vienna||The flavours of Budapest.: Start the day with a journey through the beautiful forested countryside of Bohemia. Journey through Slovakia and travel on to Hungary, following the River Danube to Budapest. Stand atop Gellert Hill where the colossal Liberty Statue is positioned in front of the Citadella watching over the city. Marvel at extensive panoramic views as you look out over the famous river dividing Buda and Pest - the two sides linked by the mighty Chain Bridge and the newer, elegant Elizabeth Bridge. With the afternoon free, perhaps join a cruise along the Danube to see the city from a different perspective. In the evening, enjoy an intimate dinner with the locals. (Buffet Breakfast)|
|Day 8||Vienna||Vienna and the Habsburgs.: In the morning, there is the option to join a private tour of Maria Theresa's Schonbrunn Palace and formal gardens. Later, join your Local Expert for a walk through Innere Stadt, the first district and historic core of Vienna. Get your camera ready for a drive around the famous Ring Road. This grand boulevard, built along the lines of the old city walls, showcases many of the capital's architectural masterpieces, including the Opera House, magnificent Hofburg Imperial Residence and Parliament building. At a typical Viennese Coffeehouse, meet a local who will share tales from a by-gone era as you enjoy coffee and delicious Sachertorte - a Viennese chocolate speciality. (Buffet Breakfast / Morning Tea)|
|Day 9||Venice||Lake Worthersee to Venice.: This day's route takes you past quiet villages, through Styria's forested mountains and into the Carinthian Lake District. Continue past Europe's warmest lake, the Worthersee, to cross into Italy near Tarvisio. Then follow mountain valleys and cascading streams down to the Veneto Plain en route to the unique city of Venice. Head via private water taxi along the Grand Canal to arrive at your central hotel. Enjoy dinner at a local restaurant before sipping Bellini cocktails at twilight whilst you are serenaded by an ensemble of talented musicians. Admire the tranquility of St. Mark's Square long after the day-trippers have gone to their mainland hotels. (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)|
Bauer Palladio Hotel & Spa, Venice.
|Day 10||Venice||The magic of La Serenissima.: Wake up to one of Europe's most romantic cities. Witness the skill of glassblowers on a visit to a traditional arts centre. Only minutes away by private launch is St. Mark's Square where the city's former wealth and power is evidenced by the riches of St. Mark's Basilica. Also admire the Doge's Palace and its adjoining Bridge of Sighs. A highlight is meeting a gondolier to learn about the age-old tradition of gondola navigation. With the rest of the day free, why not cruise along the Venetian lagoon to the island of Burano for a meal of local specialities and wine? (Buffet Breakfast)|
Bauer Palladio Hotel & Spa, Venice.
|Day 11||Rome||To the Eternal City of Rome.: Head into the Apennine Mountains and the peaceful landscapes of Tuscany. Meet your Local Expert for a guided tour through the house of the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer, Nicolo Machiavelli, with an included special opening of his private office where he wrote 'The Prince'. Visit the Italian garden with views of the Florence Cathedral and the historic cellar, which has a secret underground tunnel connecting the cellars to the oldest restaurant in Italy. Savour a tasting of wines made from the vineyards surrounding the home, accompanied by delicious samples of local Tuscan fare. Your journey continues as you follow the course of the Tiber to your hotel in the Eternal City of Rome. (Buffet Breakfast / Morning Tea)|
Veneto Palace Hotel, Rome.
|Day 12||Rome||Papal and Imperial Rome.: Receive red-carpet treatment with a VIP visit and fast-track entry to the superb Vatican Museums and enjoy behind-the-scenes access to the Bramante Staircase, a part of the Vatican normally closed to the public. A Local Expert guides your tour, culminating in a viewing of Michelangelo's famous ceiling in the Sistine Chapel. Continue inside the cavernous St. Peter's Basilica, mother church of the Catholic faith, to see another Michelangelo masterpiece, the Pieta, as well as the splendid dome. Leave Vatican City to cross the Tiber and stand outside the Colosseum, imagining yourself back in the days of the gladiators. The afternoon is at leisure. (Buffet Breakfast)|
Veneto Palace Hotel, Rome.
|Day 13||Florence||Orvieto and on to Florence.: Stop in Orvieto, located on a rock pedestal overlooking a vineyard-covered plain. Here you will savour the flavours of the region and learn about the Italian food culture as you join Chef Lorenzo for a fascinating live cooking demonstration. Sit down to your Highlight Lunch, served with a glass of Orvieto Classico wine - a magical culinary experience! Continue on to your hotel in Florence. (Buffet Breakfast / Lunch with Wine)|
UNA Hotel Vittoria, Florence.
|Day 14||Florence||Renaissance Florence.: Begin the morning by joining a Local Expert in Florence to view the multi-coloured marble cathedral, bell tower and baptistery, adorned by Ghiberti's Gates of Paradise. You also visit the open-air gallery of Renaissance masterpieces in Piazza della Signoria, the political heart of the city. See the area around Santa Croce Basilica, famous for the quality of its luxury goods. In the afternoon, enjoy free time to explore the Renaissance capital. Perhaps take the opportunity to visit Pisa and see the famous Leaning Tower? (Buffet Breakfast)|
UNA Hotel Vittoria, Florence.
|Day 15||Lucerne||Across the Alps to Lucerne.: Head north towards the Italian Lake District via Lake Lugano. Continue into the heart of the Swiss Alps, passing through the Saint Gotthard Tunnel, one of the longest road tunnels in the world, before travelling alongside towering mountains and past rushing torrents, down to scenic Lake Lucerne. Upon return to Lucerne, see the town's proud Lion Monument, carved into a limestone cliff and dedicated to the heroic Swiss Guards who died defending King Louis XVI during the French Revolution. Then, take some time to stroll across the covered Chapel Bridge and see the baroque Jesuit Church. (Buffet Breakfast)|
The Hotel Astoria Lucerne.
|Day 16||Lucerne||Lucerne and the Stanserhorn.: In the morning, embark on a scenic journey by funicular railway and open-top cable car to the summit of the stunning Mount Stanserhorn, where you will meet a Swiss Ranger and learn about the local wildlife. Breathe in the pristine mountain air and, on a clear day, witness views as far as Alsace and the Black Forest in Germany. With the day free, there is plenty of time for shopping for delectable chocolate and glamorous Swiss watches in the traffic-free Old Town. Perhaps venture into the countryside for a delightful horse-drawn carriage ride and meet the local farmers? At night, you are offered a fine selection of restaurants to choose from for your Dine-Around Evening. (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)|
The Hotel Astoria Lucerne.
|Day 17||Paris||Sights and delights of Paris.: In the morning, travel through France to the City of Light. During your time in Paris, see the impressive Eiffel Tower, the magnificent Notre Dame Cathedral, the imposing facades of the Louvre, the banks of the River Seine with its many romantic bridges, the obelisk in the centre of the Place de la Concorde and drive along the Champs Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe. With the evening free, enjoy the lively atmosphere of this glittering city. Why not visit one of the world-famous cabaret shows? (Buffet Breakfast)|
Le Meridien Etoile, Paris.
|Day 18||Paris||The food and flavours of Paris.: Split into small groups for a more personal experience and meet your Local Expert, an avid foodie, as you head into areas where Parisians go about their daily lives. Indulge in some local delicacies at a patisserie, boulangerie, fromagerie and chocolatier. With the afternoon free, there are countless opportunities to enjoy the lively atmosphere of this glittering city. Perhaps see the city from the second elevation of the iconic Eiffel Tower and visit Notre Dame Cathedral? In the evening, embrace the charms of the City of Light as you toast the end of your journey through Europe at a festive Celebration Dinner, of course accompanied by delicious French wines. (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)|
Le Meridien Etoile, Paris.
|Day 19||Paris||Au revoir Paris.: Bid farewell to your travelling companions as your journey comes to an end. Transfers arrive at Charles de Gaulle Airport at 08:00 and 11:00. (Buffet Breakfast)|
- Notes: Twin prices are per person. Festive Highlight Dinners: 22 Dec Christmas Day in Prague & New Years' Eve in Venice. 9 Jun, 22 Sep & 22 Dec departures stay at alternative accommodation of similar standard in the surroundings of Wurzburg.
- These prices are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking.
- All tour information is correct at time of tours going live, however is subject to change, please confirm all details at time of booking.
- For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Conditions page.
- Hotel Class Key: D: Deluxe SF: Superior First Class F: First Class