Spirit of Europe

Uncover the real spirit of this magnificent continent as you soak up the splendour of Western Europe - while also discovering the gorgeous yet less familiar treasures of Central and Eastern Europe. From the charismatic canals of Venice and the glitzy coastlines of the French Riviera to the uber-cool bars of Budapest and the fairytale-like vibes of Prague, your holiday dreams will be well and truly made on this trip of a lifetime.
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Price:
R34 380
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DETAILS
Starting fromR34 380
Package ValiditySet departure dates between: 27 MAR 2018 - 08 MAY 2017.
Duration24 days
DestinationEurope (France, Switzerland, Monaco, Italy, Vatican City, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, Netherlands & Belgium
Starts inLondon
Ends inLondon
Age GroupThis is a group tour (max 45 people) for ages 18 - 38 years

{tab Description}

- 17 nights in hostel accommodation & 6 nights in bungalow accommodation
- 13 nights in hostels
- 23 breakfasts, 4 lunches & 10 dinners
- English Channel Ferry crossings
- Touring by coach
- Assistance of a tour guide & driver
- Touring & sightseeing of all sites as per itinerary

 

 

{tab Day 1}

London, England to Paris, France

Spot French poodles on an epic driving tour as we roll into Paris. Pinch yourself and instagram your first selfie before we dig into a gourmet picnic under the Eiffel Tower. Food matters. A lot. In Europe, it comes alive. Kick back under the Eiffel Tower and watch Paris sparkle. Ooooh you pretty thang! Included today: -Paris city driving tour -Gourmet picnic under the Eiffel Tower

Meals: -Dinner

{tab Day 2}

Paris

This morning: free time en Francais. From the Louvre and Musée d'Orsay to the l'Arc de Triomphe and Champs Elysées, you'll be sure to make a solid dent in your bucket list. Then: hop on an optional bike tour of Paris. End your day with an optional Seine River cruise or a #throwback bohemian cabaret show.

Meals: -Breakfast

Optional activities: -Paris bike tour -Seine River cruise -Traditional cabaret show in the Latin Quarter

{tab Day 3}

Paris to Swiss Alps, Switzerland

Trade in Parisian streets for handsome peaks. Home to the highest point in Europe, 72 waterfalls and one of the largest nature conservations in Switzerland, Lauterbrunnen is obviously where we're spending the night. Urban charm ain't got nothing on Swiss scenery. Upon arrival, chow down on Swiss cuisine and hit the bar for a nightcap.

Meals: -Breakfast -Lunch -Dinner

{tab Day 4}

Swiss Alps

Scenic hikes and jaw-dropping views are on today's agenda. Go low key with a mountain walk or hop on board the Jungfraubahn railway for an optional visit to the Jungfrau Mountain summit. Expect fairytale villages en route and sky-diving out of a helicopter upon arrival (if heights don't scare you). And if one hulking mountain isn't enough? Another local feast awaits your return, regardless of how you make your way back down.

Meals: -Breakfast -Lunch -Dinner

Optional activities: -Jungfrau excursion -Schilthorn excursion -Helicopter ride (subject to availability) -Skydiving

{tab Day 5}

Swiss Alps to French Riviera, France

Don your fanciest attire and follow in Napoleon's footsteps downwards to the glamorous French Riviera. Try your hand at celeb spotting as you explore the world's most lavish waterfront property and take in some of the most Pinterest-worthy views in the world.

Meals: -Breakfast -Lunch

{tab Day 6}

French Riviera including Monaco visit

Bring your paparazzi posse to the beach or let loose among the designer boutiques in Nice's Old Town. Later: roll with the jet set as we hit up the Monaco for a guided tour and the chance to see how the 1% live (hint: it involves Ferraris and bathing in caviar). Feeling lucky? Hit the tables at the Monte Carlo Casino and make it rain (or not).

Included today: -Guided tour of Monaco

Meals: -Breakfast

{tab Day 7}

French Riviera to Florence, Italy

This morning, we'll hit up Eze for a first-hand look into the world of French scent making on a guided tour of a 16th century factory. Then, swap your 'bonjour' to a 'buongiorno' as it's on to the renaissance romance of Florence. Take THAT shot at the Leaning Tower of Pisa before trucking on to Florence to eat, sleep, repeat in the foodie capital of the world.

Included today: -French Riviera perfumery experience -Pisa visit

Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner

{tab Day 8}

Florence to Rome

Step back to 753 BC in one of the world's oldest open-air museums on an in-depth walking tour and give that bucket list a workout. Make like Caesar (the emperor, not the salad) and work up a colossus hunger as you pass by the Pantheon, throw your two cents in the Trevi Fountain, sit on the Spanish Steps and visit ancient history's version of the Hunger Games set at the Colosseum.

Included today: -Walking tour of Florence with local guide -Walking tour of Rome

Meals: -Breakfast

{tab Day 9}

Rome including Vatican City visit

Create the ultimate Roman Holiday in one day with a whirlwind of Vespas, espresso, two-cheek kisses and pizza the way it's supposed to taste. Count your blessings on an optional tour of the Vatican City to see how Michelangelo messed around and created the High Renaissance, then play eye spy with two-and-a-half millennia worth of history.

Shop ‘til you drop on Via Condotti, head to Capitoline Hill for awesome views of the Roman Forum and Colosseum or just kick back in Piazza Navona for some dolce far niente (delicious idleness).

Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner

Optional activities: -Vatican City tour

{tab Day 10}

Rome to Venice

Hark! Maketh haste to whence the lady Juliet was wooed in Verona. Snap a selfie at her balcony and join throngs of lovers leaving notes in the wall (or avoid the crowds and just marvel at the ancient arena). Say ciao to Venice from across the lagoon as we check into our accommodation, have an Eat Pray Love-worthy relationship with an irresistible Italian (meal) and get pumped for living out your own version of The Italian Job tomorrow.

Included today: -Walking tour of Verona

Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner

{tab Day 11}

Venice

You know it as the floating city, but this place is actually sinking (slowly). Check out St. Mark’s Square, Accademia Bridge and a who’s who of Venice’s usual suspects on a guided walking tour then jump on a vaporetto and explore the Grand Canal.

Also on the schedule: an optional gondola ride through the maze of marble bridges and gelato shops we call Venice. Throw away your map in the afternoon and try to find the world’s most epic little bookshop, Libreria Acqua Alta, or just go on a mission to find the perfect gelato.

Included today: -Walking tour of Venice -Vaporetto ride on the Grand Canal

Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner

Optional activities: -Gondola ride on the Grand Canal

{tab Day 12}

Venice to Vienna, Austria

More stunning scenery out the window today as we cross from from Venice to Vienna. Wave hello to the President as we go past the Hofburg Palace. And because one palace isn’t enough, we also take peek at the Schonbrunn. Three things you need to know about Vienna: famous musicians, grand coffee houses and, of course, apple strudel. Also invented the croissant. Sorry, France. Top off your day with a schnitzel if you can find one.

Included today: -Driving tour of Vienna

Meals: -Breakfast -Lunch

{tab Day 13}

Vienna

Vienna is yours for the day. Walk the grounds of the Schönbrunn Palace, see the Spanish Riding School train (if it's in town) or feed your brain exploring the Museum Quarter. Primp your pinkie for an optional Schnapps Museum visit to taste the local aperitif. Classical music fans, opt in for a night out to hear the works of Mozart, Beethoven, Bach and Strauss at the Viennese Chamber Orchestra.

Meals: -Breakfast

Optional activities: -Alt-Wiener Schnapsmuseum excursion -Viennese Chamber Orchestra -Orchestra with dinner

{tab Day 14}

Vienna to Budapest, Hungary via Bratislava, Slovakia

Hungary for more? First a pit stop in Bratislava to get the lowdown on Slovakia's capital city. While checkin' out Bratislava Castle, see if you can spot the city's quirky bronze statues in the Old Town. Then, your house in Budapest awaits. A driving tour will get you down and Danube (that be the river) with twin cities, Buda and Pest. Check out Hero's Square, Parliament House, the National Palace, Fisherman's Bastion and swanky Andrássy Ave.

Included today: -Visit Bratislava -Budapest driving tour

Meals: -Breakfast

{tab Day 15}

Budapest

Free day = put down your Rubik's Cube and take on a city with enough baroque, neoclassical and art nouveau architecture to keep you puzzled for hours. Take to the waters at the art nouveau Gellért or Szechenyi Baths and don't leave til you're pruny. There are 80+ thermal springs in Budapest but this is its most famous. Wave pool, anyone?! Indulge in a spa treatment then visit the Buda Castle or House of Terror Museum. Tonight, hang with the hipsters and drink local fruit brandy at one of the original ruin bars.

Meals: -Breakfast

Optional activities: -Danube dinner cruise

{tab Day 16}

Budapest to Krakow, Poland

Legend has it a dragon had to be smited in order for Krakow to be built (with a sulphur-stuffed lamb as bait). Bit tougher than the usual council approvals, no? Explore Poland's beating heart - and the largest medieval town square in Europe - on foot. Buff up on history at Wawel Castle, feed the ducks amongst the slushy snow on the bank of the Wisla and after dinner, slay a few glasses of mead.

Included today: -Krakow walking tour

Meals: -Breakfast

{tab Day 17}

Krakow

If you wish, go 327 metres underground to see hundreds of shades of rock salt in the Wieliczka Salt Mine, visit a centuries-old synagogue and discover the city's inner-hipster in the Jewish district and shop for Amber in the UNESCO-listed Cloth Hall. Your day, your choice.

Meals: -Breakfast

{tab Day 18}

Krakow to Prague, Czech Republic

First up, a sobering visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp. Then onto Prague and its Disney-inspiring castle spires. Fuel up on trdelník (pastry deliciousness) before a walking tour amongst the spires and cobblestone streets. Sus out the castle deemed worthy by Guinness World Records as being the largest ancient castle in the world, cross medieval Charles Bridge and watch 'Death' toll the hour on an astronomical clock that's over 600 years old.

Included today: -Visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp -Walking tour of Prague

Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner

{tab Day 19}

Prague

Another free day for the win. Channel your inner bohemian and seek out the John Lennon memorial wall, then soak up some more Czech history at the National or Communist Museum or get a taste of the quirky local culture at a marionette puppet opera (you gotta see it to believe it). Snap a selfie at Prague's own Eiffel Tower, visit a miniatures museum, eat roast pork from one of the street vendors lining Old Town Square and drink beer. Good beer.

Meals: -Breakfast

{tab Day 20}

Prague to Berlin, Germany

Get acquainted with 800 year-old Dresden – a city virtually destroyed in WWII and then rebuilt – and ogle the Frauenkirche before making your beard all the more ironic in Berlin. Prep yourself for currywurst, pilsner and more hipsters per capita than anywhere else. We'll drive you around to see (what's left of) the Berlin Wall, Checkpoint Charlie, the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag building before making your food baby sing with a hearty German meal.

Included today: -Walking tour of Dresden -Driving tour of Berlin

Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner

{tab Day 21}

Berlin

Shake off last night with a wander around the German capital. Optional: Third Reich walking tour and local insight into what the city was like under Nazi rule during World War II. Hackescher Markt is a hit for lunch. Afternoon suggestion? Have a picnic at the historic Tempelhof airport turned public park #picniconthetarmac. Tonight: hit the hotspots on an optional Berlin Alternative Tour and Nightlife tour.

Meals: -Breakfast

Optional activities: -Third Reich walking tour -Berlin Alternative Tour and Nightlife tour

{tab Day 22}

Berlin to Amsterdam, Netherlands

Cheese lovers, rejoice. Your next stop is a local Dutch farm to see how cheddar (and clogs) gets made. Next: Amsterdam, mayo-dipped fries and red lights. Get your bearings on a walking tour of the vibrant capital and see the Dam Square, Royal Palace and National Monument. Then: explore all that this notoriously liberal city has to offer.

Included today: -Dutch cheese and clogs demonstration -Walking tour of Amsterdam

Meals: -Breakfast

{tab Day 23}

Amsterdam

Join the 881,000 bicycles and get local on a city bike tour of Amsterdam's iconic canals, bridges and parks. Culture fiends, delve deeper with a visit to the Anne Frank House, Van Gogh or Rijksmuseum. Still thirsty for more? Check out the Heineken Experience for an interactive visit and tasting at the brewery. Top it off with a dinner cruise on the canal.

Included today: -Canal dinner cruise

Meals: -Breakfast -Dinner

Optional activities: -Amsterdam bike ride

{tab Day 24}

Amsterdam to London, England

After all the Amster-damage has been done and dusted, it’s time to hit the road and make tracks to ol’ Blighty. Soak up all the happy group vibes you can possibly handle – this is your last coach ride with the gang. #sadface.

Meals: -Breakfast

 { /tabs}
 
Operator Topdeck Travel www.topdeck.travel tel : 0800 982 308 (toll free)
Publish Date Thursday, 17 March 2016 02:00
Expire Date Tuesday, 31 May 2016 02:00
Valid From Tuesday, 29 March 2016 02:00
Valid To Tuesday, 11 October 2016 02:00
Booked through Topdeck
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