Full buffet breakfast daily; 7 three-course dinners, including a dinner at a local restaurant in Munich
Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description.
ARRIVE IN MUNICH, GERMANY. Welcome to Munich! At 6 pm, meet your Tour Director and traveling companions for a welcome dinner at your hotel.
MUNICH–SALZBURG, AUSTRIA. Sightseeing with a Local Guide in Germany’s “Secret Capital” features the impressive Olympic Stadium, built for the 1972 Olympics; the 1,000-foot-high Olympic Tower; Nymphenburg Palace; and Königsplatz, used for Nazi rallies during World War II. Drive along the Ludwigstrasse, and see the Bavarian Arch of Triumph and Field Marshall Hall, a monumental loggia on the Odeonsplatz. Visit lively MARIENPLATZ with the Old and the New Town Halls and the gothic Frauenkirche. Arrive in lovely Salzburg and discover the historic center during your guided walking tour. Admire MIRABELL GARDENS, the Great Festival Hall, St. Peter’s Monastery, and magnificent RESIDENZ SQUARE, where some scenes of The Sound of Music movie were filmed.
SALZBURG–VIENNA. Morning at leisure with the possibility to join an optional excursion to Berchtesgaden. Then, continue through the scenic Salzkammergut Lakeland and along the Danube Valley to Vienna, once the center of the mighty Habsburg Empire. Tonight, you may wish to try out local specialties and Viennese entertainment.
VIENNA. Guided sightseeing features vistas of Prater park with its giant Ferris wheel; a drive along the famous Ringstrasse with its magnificent buildings like the State Opera House; the Jewish quarter; and a stop at the Hofburg Palace, winter residence of the Austrian imperial family. Marvel at the impressive courtyards, famous HELDENPLATZ, and awesome St. Stephen’s Cathedral. There is an opportunity to join an interesting optional excursion to Bratislava, capital of Slovakia.
VIENNA–PIBER–ST. VEIT. Visit magnificent SCHÖNBRUNN PALACE, the former imperial summer residence, before leaving Vienna. Enter Styria, with its mountains and forests. Visit [LF] the world-famous LIPIZZANER STALLION STUD FARM in Piber, where these magnificent horses are bred and raised before training at the Spanish Riding School in Vienna.
ST. VEIT–ITALIAN DOLOMITES, ITALY–INNSBRUCK, AUSTRIA. Cross the Italian border and arrive in Cortina d’Ampezzo, the Olympic skiing resort in the Dolomites, the Italian “Rocky Mountains.” Travel via Tre Croci Pass and Lake Misurina to Brunico. Cross Brenner Pass into the Tyrolean Alps, and arrive in cozy Innsbruck, capital of Tyrol. Follow your Tour Director for a pleasant walk through the quaint medieval lanes to Emperor Maximilian’s GOLDEN ROOF. Time to shop for Innsbruck’s famous crystal. Why not join an optional Tyrolean song-and-dance show?
INNSBRUCK–ST. MORITZ, SWITZERLAND. Today’s focus is the Swiss Engadine. See deep-blue lakes, airy larch forests, mountain peaks exceeding 12,000 feet, and quaint villages with massive white stone houses in the characteristic Grisons style. Afternoon is free in ritzy St. Moritz.
ST. MORITZ–LAKE COMO–LUGANO. Descend via Italy’s Lake Como to Lugano. See Parco Ciani, and drive along the lakeside promenade to Piazza Riforma, noted for its pastel-colored, neoclassical palazzi. Join the locals in a relaxed atmosphere at the [LF] historical Vanini Café for an aperitif. Tonight, you may wish to join an optional cruise across sparkling Lake Lugano to the fishing village of Gandria, where dinner awaits.
LUGANO–LAKE MAGGIORE, ITALY–ZERMATT, SWITZERLAND. From Swiss Lake Lugano, drive to Lake Maggiore, the largest lake in the Swiss-Italian Lake District, and stop in elegant Stresa. An optional boat ride to enchanting Isola Bella can be arranged. Cross lofty Simplon Pass into the Swiss Valais, an area renowned for its great mountain resorts. In Täsch, board the MOUNTAIN TRAIN to climb the last few miles up to Zermatt, a picturesque cluster of rustic chalets beneath the Matterhorn.
AT LEISURE IN ZERMATT. A full day at leisure is your chance to relax and enjoy the peace and quiet of this car-free town. Join an exciting optional to Klein Matterhorn for spectacular views of the Matterhorn and the surrounding Alps.
ZERMATT–BERNE–INTERLAKEN–LUCERNE. A scenic drive through the vineyards and apricot groves of the lower Rhône Valley brings you to Lake Geneva and via the dairy country of Gruyère to the Swiss capital, Berne. See the monumental Federal Palace during your orientation and stop at the BEAR PARK before continuing to Interlaken, a Bernese Oberland resort nestled between Lake Thun and Lake Brienz and beneath the towering Jungfrau. Cross Brünig Pass to picture-book Lucerne.
LUCERNE. Follow your Tour Director on a leisurely walk this morning, and admire Thorwaldsen’s impressive LION MONUMENT, dedicated to the Swiss Guards who protected the Royal House of France during the French Revolution. Walk along ornate patrician houses of the walled Old Town, then cross the famous covered CHAPEL BRIDGE to the Jesuit Church, the first large baroque church built in Switzerland on the north side of the Alps. Afterward, shop for Swiss watches and maybe join an exciting optional excursion to Mount Pilatus.
LUCERNE–BAD RAGAZ–VADUZ, LIECHTENSTEIN–DORNBIRN, AUSTRIA. A scenic drive along Lake Zurich and Lake Walen brings you to Bad Ragaz, a popular spa resort, famous for its natural thermal spring water. Next is Vaduz, capital of the Principality of Liechtenstein. Take pictures of the castle where the rulers of this tiny country reside. Cross the border into Austria and arrive in Dornbirn with time to explore the market square in the historical town center.
DORNBIRN–MUNICH, GERMANY. Return to Germany and follow the scenic road through Bavaria’s beautiful Allgäu region and arrive in Munich. Afternoon at leisure, and tonight, a farewell dinner at a local restaurant is the best way to say auf Wiedersehen!
MUNICH. Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.