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This Best of Eastern Europe tour visits four countries, all of which have gone through drastic political and social changes during the last seventy years. Enjoy visits to old-world imperial cities and some charming off-the-beaten-path villages as well. Eastern Europe is rapidly transforming and adapting to 21st-century western European standards which, from a tourism standpoint, has diluted its rich cultural and nationalistic heritage. Join us now to experience the best of Eastern Europe. Your Adventure Starts Here!
Berlin - 3 nights
Prague - 2 nights
Kraków - 2 nights
Eger - 1 night
Budapest - 4 nights
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DAY 1: Welcome to Berlin – Let’s plan to meet at 4:00 p.m. at our hotel for introductions and tour orientations. Then, we will head out for a stroll and a lesson on Berlin’s handy public transportation system. Later, we’ll finish off the day with a group dinner at a local pub. Sleep 3 nights in Berlin. Walking: light. Dinner.
DAY 2: Berlin City Center – Enjoy a walking tour this morning that weaves together many historic sites and monuments. View Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie and learn about Berlin’s myriad past, from WWII into the 21st century. Then we’ll set you free for the afternoon and evening to experience more of Berlin on your own. Walking: strenuous.
DAY 3: Former East Berlin – We will begin today by exploring the old Jewish neighborhood which was destroyed and is now being rebuilt and rejuvenated. After lunch, we’ll take a look at a cold-war-era “ghost metro station” and cap off the day with a visit to the National Memorial to the Berlin Wall. Tonight, enjoy a picnic (weather permitting) in a popular outdoor park. Walking: strenuous. Dinner or lunch.
DAY 4: Dresden and Prague – Today, we will hop on our bus and head south to Dresden. Here, enjoy a walking tour of the newly-rebuilt city center that was totally devastated during WWII. After lunch, we will continue to Prague where we’ll embark on an ambling walking tour through Prague’s historic old town. We’ll end our day with a traditional dinner in an authentic pub. Sleep 2 nights in Prague. Walking: moderate. Driving: 4 hours. Dinner.
DAY 5: Prague Castle – After breakfast, join your guide on a local tram crossing the Vltava River and up the hill to the largest castle complex in Europe. You’ll visit St. Vitus Cathedral, the Royal Palace (when available), St. George’s Basilica and the “golden lane.” Enjoy lunch and the remainder of the day and evening on your own to experience more of Prague. Your guide will be available to help plan activities, such as a concert, dinner or a performance at the unique Black Light Theatre. Walking: strenuous.
DAY 6: The countryside and Kraków – Leaving Prague, we’ll head east into Moravia. Along the way enjoy a stop at a favorite hilltown for some free time to explore and have lunch. After crossing the border, we will end up in Kraków, where we will take a walking tour and have a look at the historic market square. Sleep 2 nights in Kraków. Walking: light. Driving: 7 hours. Dinner.
DAY 7: Kraków – Join a local guide this morning for a look at Kraków’s varied past. Enjoy Wawel Castle, the Cathedral, and the historic St. Mary’s Church. You’ll also learn about the life of local boy turned Pope, John Paul II. Enjoy the afternoon and evening on your own. Walking: moderate.
DAY 8: Auschwitz-Birkenau – This morning we will pay a visit to Europe’s most stirring memorial to the Holocaust. Then, we will continue through Poland and into Hungary en route to Eger, a historic town famous for its castle and “bull’s blood” wine. Sleep 1 night in or near Egar. Walking: moderate. Driving: 8 hours. Dinner.
DAY 9: A Small Town and a Capital City – Hungary is loaded with thermal hot springs, and it seems like there is a bathhouse at every one. Enjoy a soak in the local baths this morning or use your free time to explore more of Eger. Then, enjoy a visit to a local winery for an educational tasting event. Now, all squeaky clean and loaded with vino, we’ll zip down to Budapest for a tasty paprika-laced dinner and a short stroll along the river. Sleep 4 nights in Budapest. Driving: 4 hours. Dinner.
Day 10: Bratislava – After breakfast, enjoy a ride through the countryside to nearby Slovakia. We’ll visit its capital city of Bratislava for a look at yet another rising Eastern European star city. Experience the hilltop castle, a modern shopping mall and the charming old town. Walking: moderate. Driving: 4 hours.
DAY 11: A Tale of Two Cities – Years ago, two towns sprouted along the Danube River. Today we’ll discover sites, monuments, Baroque-era squares, parks and markets in Pest. Our walking tour will meander for a few hours in the morning and afternoon with a nice break for lunch on your own in the Great Market Hall or nearby squares. We will cap off our day with a cruise on the Danube. Boat: 1 hour. Walking: strenuous.
DAY 12: Buda & Baths – Join your guide on a scenic funicular journey up to Castle Hill for a panoramic view of the city. Then revel in the beauty of the huge Royal Palace and the glided Matthias Church. We’ll finish here in Buda, leaving you the remainder of the day to soak in the thermal baths and poke around Budapest on your own. Tonight, we will finish off our tour over dinner, sharing memories of our trek through Eastern Europe. Walking: moderate. Soaking: wonderful. Dinner.
DAY 13: Your tour ends today after breakfast – Connections to the train station and airport are easy here in Budapest. Your guide can assist with directions and suggestions to get you on your way.
This itinerary is subject to change.
Walking and Physical Activity: We have planned this trip to provide maximum tour experiences. The basic nature of Europe does require some degree of physical activity to get out and see the sights, especially in the big cities. To help you plan, we’ve included a daily projection of physical activity. Here is our key for our walking activity ratings:
THE ESSENCE OF ITALY & TUSCANY VILLA EXPERIENCE - My husband and I just finished up our second Italy tour with David and were delighted every step of the way. David takes a personal interest in those that travel with him which makes traveling abroad a great adventure! The places we've eaten as well as the hotels have all been top notch. David provides a wealth of local knowledge and his relationship with the local people allows you to experience the best of cuisine and wine. All of the details are taken care of so you can focus on a stress-free vacation. I highly recommend and look forward to our next European trip! - Tammy, Middleburg, FL
A CUSTOM DESIGNED ITALY TOUR - We were on the shadow tour of the Niceville Singers choir. It was the best trip ever! They made our trip enjoyable and easy. We met some amazing people and Charlotte and David were so knowledgeable everywhere we traveled. My husband is an airline pilot and I was a flight attendant. We have been to Europe many times. We went to places and restaurants on this tour I did not know existed!!! Not only were the places amazing but we enjoyed getting to know Charlotte and David. Such a fun couple!! We will definitely be taking another trip with them!!!!- Tammy, Niceville, FL
A CUSTOM TOUR TO ITALY - Best food, never felt unsafe, had an authentic experience, and loved began able to experience so much in such a short amount of time. He can really tailor an experience to your interests and what you would like to do! Highly recommend. - Courtney, Middleburg, FL
THE BEST OF GERMANY-AUSTRIA-SWITZERLAND – David’s tour ran very smooth. Great hotel rooms with breakfast each morning. He gave informative tours of the cities and areas we visited and then we had time on our own to visit in more detail or go shopping (my favorite activity anywhere). David was happy to stop along the way for photo opps and rest stops. We did check out some new sites with him. Each day was an adventure filled with great food, wine, and sites. Loved every moment of the trip. Planning next adventure with him now. –Elizabeth, Orange Park, FL
CHRISTMAS MARKETS IN GERMANY & AUSTRIA – This was my 5th tour with David to Europe and he never disappoints. This trip was different than the rest because it was focused around the Christmas markets…nevertheless, I had a fantastic time! David always finds a great balance of hitting the mandatory “touristy” locations and allowing us the freedom to go off on our own and explore the cities we’re visiting. – Tom, Atlanta, GA
GERMANY-AUSTRIA-SWITZERLAND-DUBLIN – The diversity of our group form the newbie teenagers to the well-traveled ladies was great. I learned so much from both. Very thoughtful when coming to issues of courtesy to our hosts, money, customs of the country. David’s calmness was greatly appreciated. Walking right in line, not having to buy tickets was a great plus. Your guides of Dachau and the Louvre were right on and helped to make the visit much more enjoyable. Packing light paid off. I am glad I did not have to lug a lot of baggage the whole time. We had talked about wifi for the bus as a potential plus. Having brewed coffee and a refrigerator was great (on the bus). Newsletter good for whetting the appetite for traveling. More Museli! Never can get enough of it. The dining was all good. Nothing can replace the time at K&K in Salzburg. The restaurant was empty. Just a few people sharing food and conversation. The food was the icing on the cake for a wonderful experience all around. Salad with huge slices of parmesan cheese. Sea bass that was exquisite and apple tart. Trying to serve a group of 26 effectively is difficulty. I saw the waitresses really working to serve us well. Thanks again for an awesome trip. – Kent, St. Johns, FL
GERMANY-AUSTRIA-SWITZERLAND-FRANCE – All meals were very good (much better than meals experienced on river cruise after tour with David.) Swiss dinner in Salzburg was favorite evening meal. My favorite was dinner in Salzburg with small group (not included in tour) Picnic in park at Eiffel Tower was unique & something not normally offered by tours. – Ramona, Sarasota, FL
GERMANY-AUSTRIA-SWITZERLAND-FRANCE –Well worth the money spent!!! We enjoy going with David on trips, because we KNOW the food will be GREAT & the hotels will be nice! Really enjoyed the time in the “Paris neighborhood” where we shopped for our picnic. The cheese shop was amazing, as was the aged Sheep’s milk cheese from France that we purchased there! – Laurie, Jacksonville, FL
GERMANY-AUSTRIA-SWITZERLAND-FRANCE- The entire tour was an awesome experience! The organization, events, destinations, accommodations were all great and I believe the only way to tour Europe! Although each day we kept saying “It just keeps getting better”, I’d have to say that Paris was the best as there was so much to see and experience and the food was very good. I was very impressed with the amount of information David shared with us daily and how knowledgeable David is regarding each of the countries and the sites that we visited. – Donna, Jacksonville Beach, FL
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David’s newest blog describes his personal adventures in Europe, timely information and travel hints.
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