It’s time to say “Aufwiedersehen” (until next time) to our Bavarian home-away-from-home. After loading up the bus we will depart for Bavaria's Hauptstadt – the capital city – Munich. Our day begins with a visit to the Frauenkirche with its characteristic onion shaped domes overwhelming the Munich skyline. A short stroll from there will bring us to Marienplatz for the city's world famous bell play. Savor the many sights and delicious smells of the market square. Warm up while enjoying a hot Glühwein or visit an authentic Bavarian beer hall filled with Gemütlichkeit.
Following the Munich Christmas Markets Tour, guests will be guided to our Munich hotel. In order to ensure a smooth check-in process, guests luggage will be awaiting them in their rooms upon arrival. Following a relaxing evening and good nights sleep, guests will have a short worry-free trip to the Munich International Airport.
For guests who will be continuing on the Grand Christmas Market Tour: They will depart Munich at 12:30 and join our second group as we head for beautiful Lindau, arriving at our elegant hotel located along the shores of Lake Constance. Enjoy a Welcome Dinner Reception and get to know all the new guests who will be joining us for the second half of the Grand Tour.
Enjoy a relaxing day in beautiful Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Visit the Zugspitze, Germany's highest mountain, and take a ride with the new world record holding cable car. Another great option would be to treat yourself to an easy morning before visiting your favorite local cafe followed by some shopping in the city center. In the evening, a festive group dinner will be hosted with music and time spent reminiscing on the memories made over the past days. Enjoy an exquisite meal as we reflect on memories that will last a lifetime. A custom video, highlighting the best of your Bavaria & Beyond vacation, will premier at the start of this special evening. Embrace the terrific friendships which were made, while reminiscing on your time in Bavaria & Beyond!
Discover the city Mozart called home on the Salzburg City & Christmas Market Tour. Get acquainted with this cultural treasure as your guide leads you on a short walking tour of the Old Town district. Sights along the way include Mozart Square, The Sound of Music Fountain, Mozart's birth house, St. Paul's Cathedral, General J. Collins grave, and finally the Hohensalzburg Castle. After learning the lay of the land, enjoy free time to visit the city's sights and shops at your leisure. A must-see is the city's elaborate Christmas Market, located at the base of the Hohensalzburg Fortress, just in front of the Salzburg Cathedral. The Market's 95+ Vendors are sure to offer a little something for every taste!
Inspired by the Palace of Versailles, Linderhof Palace is one of the region's hidden gems. It was the only construction project ordered by King Ludwig II to be completed. Learn about Ludwig's eccentric life and mysterious death as we drive through the rural Graswang Valley. As an alternative, guests may choose to forgo Linderhof Palace, while visiting the world famous Passion Play theater for a private tour instead. After their tours, all guests will have an opportunity to enjoy a Bavarian meal and free time to explore the Christmas Market of Oberammergau taking place only one day each year. On the short drive back to Garmisch we will make a stop at a quaint family owned woodcarver shop with its vast array of handcrafted goods.
History, Tyrolean traditions, and a magical Christmas environment await at the Kufstein Christmas Market hosted in this medieval fortress. Dating back to the 13th century, the Kufstein Fortress, set against the backdrop of the Austrian Alps, may now be easily accessed with the castle's Panoramabahn. Take a trip back in time as you walk the historic corridors of the fortress while visiting the numerous exhibitions. Located atop one of the magnificent fortress towers is the annual Christmas Market. Here, guests may discover over 40 unique stands with goods from local craftsmen and artists.
The sun has set and the stars are out as you experience the magic of the Augsburg by Night Christmas Tour. The historic market has been taking place annually for over 500 years! Wander through the idyllic wooden pavilions with the backdrop of Augsburg's beautiful Rathaus and its ornamental Goldner Saal (Golden Hall). An absolute highlight of the evening is sure to be the "Engelsspiel" Angels' Performance. The performance consists of heavenly harps, festive organ tunes, and dozens of local ladies dressed as angels singing holiday carols from the windows of the historic Town Hall Rathaus.
Head south to warm up in the heart of Northern Italy's wine country. Travel through three countries in just one day via the scenic Brenner Pass. Take in the regions breathtaking landscape as your guide explains its intriguing history. Switching between Austrian & Italian control throughout the past century, this bi-lingual region presents the best of both cultures. Our destination is the pristine wine making region of Südtirol. After being greeted by the Sommelier, you will learn about the region's world class wines before indulging in a private wine tasting. Enjoy an authentic Italian meal for lunch before making we make our way back north. Along the way we will make one last stop at an authentic Italian Christmas market where we will discover the unique blend of Austrian and Italian Christmas traditions.
Take a tour down the picturesque Ludwigstrasse, part of the historic Via Claudia Augusta trading route. Learn about Partenkirchen's merchant past and lively tales of the townspeople as well as the many famous travelers to pass through. After admiring all the beautiful merchant homes and their vibrant frescoes, we will visit the newly renovated chocolate shop for some delicious sweets created right before your eyes! Following our walking tour of Partenkirchen we will make our way across town lines to Garmisch with a stop at the ski jumping stadium; site of the 1936 Winter Olympic Games. We will enjoy lunch at a secluded mountain chalet after which guests will have time to peruse the shops and market stands of the Garmisch pedestrian zone.
Grüss Gott (hello in the local Bavarian dialect) and welcome to the start of your Bavaria & Beyond vacation! Upon arriving at the Munich International Airport, your Bavaria & Beyond guides will be waiting to greet you. Enjoy a complimentary beverage and mingle with your fellow travelers as our group assembles at the designated airport "Treffpunkt" or meeting point. Once the group is completely gathered, we will pack up and depart for beautiful Garmisch-Partenkirchen via a private coach bus. Our "express check-in" process will ensure that you quickly and comfortably settle-in to your new Bavarian "home-away-from-home". After a short break to relax and unpack, a Welcome Reception will be hosted to get to know the group. Enjoy an all-inclusive meal with delicious local delicacies and of course, Bavarian Bier! During the reception all the necessary information will be distributed to ensure a smooth start to your Bavaria & Beyond vacation!