If you want to see Western Europe’s main highlights but don’t have a lot of time, this is the vacation for you! Visit England, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Switzerland, and France. Sample the infamous French food—from fresh baguettes and pastries to gourmet French cuisine and fine wines. See London’s famous museums, shop at its famous stores on Bond Street and Knightsbridge, or kick back and stroll through lovely Hyde Park. A highlight of your trip is Germany’s Romantic Road. Did you know the Romantic Road was a trade route during the middle ages? Step back in time as you travel this famous area—with its charming villages, cobblestone streets, walled cities, and scenic countryside. Stop in Rothenburg, a walled town that has retained its medieval character, to really experience the appeal of the Romantic Road. Once you cross into Austria, head south into Italy to visit the unique floating city of Venice as well as Romeo and Juliet’s Verona. Another highlight is your stay in Lucerne. Situated on the shores of beautiful Lake Lucerne and nestled within the snowcapped Swiss Alps, Lucerne is one of Switzerland’s finest cities. On this trip, you’ll see this picturesque town and its famous Chapel Bridge, built in 1333 as part of the city’s fortifications and now the oldest preserved wooden bridge in Europe. Don’t miss the Water Tower, built approximately 1300, which has served as a place to store loot, a treasury, a jail, and a torture chamber. Your vacation concludes with an overnight in Paris and a Channel ferry back to London. In a shorter period of time, this affordable European vacation offers it all—historical sites, gastronomic opportunities, quaint towns, and scenic beauty.
Day #1 Arrive in London, England. Check into your hotel. Uniformed hosts are available to help you make the most of your stay.
Day #2 London. A full day to savor our rich program of optional activities: take a panoramic tour of London’s landmarks, visit the Tower of London, or choose an excursion to Windsor Castle. Tonight, maybe a leisurely cruise on the River Thames? (B)
Day #3 London–Brussels, Belgium. Leave in the early morning and head through the lush English countryside to the Channel port, where you board your ferry for the Continent. Here your Tour Director and comfortable coach wait to take you to Brussels for an orientation drive and an overnight. (B)
Day #4 Brussels–Rhine Cruise, Germany–Frankfurt Area. Today, journey into Germany to the shores of the mighty Rhine to enjoy the afternoon cruise. Then, on to the Frankfurt area for an overnight. (B,D)
Day #5 Frankfurt Area–Romantic Road–Innsbruck, Austria. The Romantic Road is undoubtedly today’s highlight. See picturesque Rothenburg before heading towards Innsbruck for an overnight. (B,D)
Day #6 Innsbruck–Brenner Pass–Venice Area, Italy. Journey south into Italy by way of the majestic “Europa Bridge” and Brenner Pass. Arrive in Venice, where the included orientation starts with a boat ride along the Giudecca Canal to Piazza San Marco. Time at leisure to soak up the magic atmosphere of this unique city. Also visit a typical Venetian glassblowing workshop. (B,D)
Day #7 Venice Area–Verona–Lake Lucerne, Switzerland. Stop in Verona to see Juliet's legendary balcony. Over the Swiss border, begin the climb to the St. Gotthard Tunnel and descend to the breathtaking beauty of Lake Lucerne. (B,D)
Day #8 Lake Lucerne–Dijon, France. Your visit this morning focuses on the main highlights of Lucerne. Also time for an optional excursion to the Stanserhorn. In the afternoon, journey into France for an overnight in the charming town of Dijon. (B)
Day #9 Dijon–Paris. This morning, leave Dijon and travel via the autoroute to Paris. An afternoon’s included sightseeing with a local expert shows you many of the best-known Parisian sights. (B)
Day #10 Paris–London, England. Relax and let the countryside whiz by on the road north to the coast, where you board your Channel ferry. Through Kent, return to London for an evening arrival. (B)
Day #11 London. Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)