Alpine Harmony Preview (2014) with Insight Vacations
Board your overnight flight (not included).
Day 2 , 3
Welcome to Switzerland! After being greeted by your Tour Director, transfers depart Geneva Airport at 09:00, 13:00 and 17:00 hours. A beautiful drive around the sweeping arc of Lake Geneva brings you to your sumptuous hotel situated in the heart of Montreux – the pearl of the Swiss Riviera. Tonight, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception, drinks and a light meal. After a restful night's sleep, head for the lush rolling dairy pastures of the Swiss countryside, famous for cheese manufacturing. Visit Gruyères, a picture-perfect medieval town with a castle, set on a small hill. Then continue to the nearby village of Broc for a chocolate factory visit and sampling. Return to the shores of Lake Geneva for a guided visit of Château de Chillon, inspiration for the poetry of Lord Byron. The rest of the day is at leisure to enjoy your hotel's superb facilities, shop or sample the local wines grown in hills around the lake.(Welcome Reception / Buffet Breakfast)
Day 4 , 5
First stop this morning is Murten with its ramparts, towers and yachts. See the arcaded houses of the main street and 13C castle which affords splendid lake views. Then it's on to the Swiss capital of Berne. Gather at the clock tower to watch the mechanical procession of painted figures and view the Ogre Fountain. See also the Bear Pits, Cathedral of St Vincent, Federal Palace and floral displays. Now a drive alongside Lake Thun leads to the Lutschine Valley and the 'glacier village' of Grindelwald, where the Wetterhorn, Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau peaks provide a dramatic backdrop. Your grand hotel is in the traditional Swiss chalet style, featuring luxurious modern amenities. You have full day to relax and enjoy the clear mountain air and to sample delicious Swiss specialities. Why not join an optional excursion to the majestic Jungfrau. By night, perhaps try Swiss fondue at a mountain restaurant?(Buffet Breakfast / Dinner / Buffet Breakfast)
Day 6 , 7
Drive on through glorious mountain scenery this morning. Lunch time finds you in the fortified island town of Lindau. After some time to stroll through the historic streets, continue through lush, rolling dairy country of the Bavarian Allgäu. Stop for a photo of the thin, peaked towers of Neuschwanstein Castle, before reaching your small and exclusive family hotel in the attractive winter sports resort of Garmisch Partenkirchen. Next morning, set off for the rococo jewel of Linderhof - “mad” King Ludwig's greatest fantasy. With a local expert tour the many salons, the beautiful gardens and fountains. Then on to the picturesque Bavarian village of Oberammergau, scene of the famous Passion Play, performed every 10 years as thanksgiving for the end of the Black Death. Hand painted murals decorate the walls of the buildings in this historic settlement. See the local carved figurines – a tradition dating back to the Middle Ages. Return to your resort where the rest of the day is at leisure.(Buffet Breakfast / Dinner / Buffet Breakfast)
Day 8 , 9
Just over the border in the mountain ringed city of Innsbruck, see the Golden Roof of Emperor Maximilian and the Royal Palace. Then enjoy some time to relax among the typical Austrian cafes of the Old Quarter, with its narrow arcades and gabled shop fronts. Follow the Inn Valley, past the Wilde Kaiser mountain range to Berchtesgaden, where salt has been excavated for centuries. Discover a secret world of 'white gold' during a guided tour through the salt mine. Continue through the mountains to your elegant hotel in Salzburg. In the morning a local expert introduces you to Mozart’s home city. In the Cathedral Square view the domed cathedral and splendid Residenz fountain. Stroll through the old town’s narrow lanes to see Mozart’s Birthplace on the Getreidegasse, a lively shopping street lined with attractive wrought iron signs. Cross the river to the formal gardens of the Mirabell Palace where there is a great chance to photograph the city skyline crowned by the castle heights. The afternoon is at leisure to discover more of the city’s delights or shop in the traditional passageways of the old town.(Buffet Breakfast / Dinner / Buffet Breakfast)
Day 10 , 11
Enjoy a fine view of the Mondsee as you journey through the lakes and mountains of the Salzkammergut, and across the rich farmlands of eastern Austria. Pass the impressive Benedictine monastery of Melk before joining a scenic cruise along the River Danube through the Wachau Valley, where vineyards cover hillsides overlooked by ruined castles. Finally head for Austria’s great Imperial capital and your deluxe hotel, where Queen Elizabeth II, Charlie Chaplin, Michael Jackson, and Vladimir Putin have all stayed. Vienna owes much of its present day charm to the long reign of the Habsburgs, so in the morning, acquaint yourself with Europe’s greatest ruling dynasty at Maria Theresa’s Schonbrunn Palace. Following your guided visit there is a strudel demonstration at the court bakery. Next, join your guide for a drive around the famous ring road. This grand boulevard, built along the lines of the old city walls, show-cases many of the capital’s architectural masterpieces, including the Opera House, magnificent Hofburg Imperial Residence and Parliament building. This evening you are invited to a Celebration Dinner with wine - a fitting finalé to your tour.(Buffet Breakfast / Buffet Breakfast / Celebration Dinner)
Departure transfers arrive at Vienna Airport at 07:00 and 09:00.(Buffet Breakfast)
Tour Sightseeing Highlights
- Murten: See the town ramparts, towers, arcades and castle.
- Berne: See the Bear Pits, Cathedral of St Vincent, Federal Palace and floral displays. Gather at the clock tower to watch the glockenspiel and view the Ogre Fountain. .
- Lindau: Walk past old inns and half-timbered houses.
- Füssen: See Neuschwanstein Castle.
- Oberammeragau: See the immense Theatre and admire the colourfully painted chalets.
- Innsbruck: See the Golden Roof and the Royal Palace.
- Mondsee: See the cloister church used for the site of the wedding in The Sound of Music.
- Salzburg: See the Mirabell Gardens, Mozart’s birthplace on the Getreidegasse and visit the Cathedral in the Old Town.
- Vienna: Tour the Ring Road seeing the Winter Palace City Hall and Parliament.
- Scenic Drives: Swiss Countryside, Bavarian Alps, Salzkammergut.
- Travel into the lush Swiss countryside to the fortified medieval town of Gruyères and get your tastebuds tingling with a visit to the chocophiles’ Mecca of Broc
- Visit Chillon Castle, beautifully set on Lake Geneva, home to the Counts of Savoy and immortalised by Byron.
- Visit King Ludwig's rococo jewel of Linderhof - an ornate hideaway set amid formal gardens where fountains play.
- Your railcar clatters more than a kilometer underground to a chilly crystalline world of myth and legend, where 'the slide' and 'Mirror Lake' await.
- Join a cruise along the most beautiful part of the Danube, where the river flows beneath cliffs hung with vines and dotted with castles.
- Stand beneath frescoed ceilings, crystal chandeliers and gilded Rococo frames where Mozart performed as a six-year-old prodigy.
- Satisfy your strudel cravings at the Imperial Court Bakery Schönbrunn to see the classic apple treat being prepared.
- Vienna boasts one of the world's most famous culinary traditions at your Celebration Dinner with Wine.
- The Fairmont Le Montreux Palace is a jewel of Belle Époque style, combining contemporary design with classical elegance.
- Nestled at the entrance to Salzburg’s Mirabell Gardens, the Hotel Bristol is full of charm and warmth and ranks amongst Europe's leading hotels.
- The sumptuous Hotel Imperial was originally built as a stately palace on the Ring Boulevard - now a hotel tastefully furnished with precious, authentic antiques for your enjoyment.
YOUR DELICIOUS DINING EXPERIENCES
- Get to know your Tour Director and fellow guests over a Welcome Reception including a light meal (WR)
- 10 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) and 3 three course dinners (D)
YOUR INCLUSIVE GOLD SERVICES
- Escorted by your ‘Personal Concierge’ an Insight professional Tour Director and accompanied by expert local guides where appropriate.
- Complimentary in-room Internet access (where available).
- Enjoy the unique comfort of Insight’s luxury air-conditioned 40 seat coach with extended leg room and on-board restroom.
- Airport arrival and departure transfers at scheduled times on Day 2 and Day 12.
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