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Alpine Christmas Markets (Winter Season)

Operated by: Insight Vacations

9 Days from $1,758 per person
German Christmas Market

Countries Visited

Germany, Austria, France, Switzerland ...more Germany, Austria, France, Switzerland

Locations Visited

Munich, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Lindau, Freiburg, Strasbourg, Zurich ...more Munich, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Lindau, Freiburg, Strasbourg, Zurich
  1. Day 1 Arrive in Munich.

    Welcome to Germany. Transfers leave Munich airport for your hotel at 10:00 and 13:00. Meet your Travel Director at 15:00 for an orientation of the city that will show you all the city’s major sights, culminating in the Marienplatz, with its soaring Town Hall and Glockenspiel. Here, the Christkindlmarkt will be in full swing, an entrancing festival of light and music. Your Travel Director will introduce you to one of the market stallholders for a taste of traditional Bavarian Lebkuchen and a fragrant cup of Glühwein. In the evening, join your Travel Director and fellow guests for a Welcome Dinner with wine.(Dinner with Wine)

    meals Dinner with Wine
    hotel Munich Marriott Hotel.
  2. Day 2 Free time in the Bavarian capital.

    Munich embraces the holiday season with a particular zeal, so the day is all yours to enjoy the vibrant festive markets that abound in this city. On crisp winter days, organ music and carols ring out from the ancient churches. If snow has fallen, the vast English Garden provides lovely winter vistas. Another option is to experience the romantic royal palaces of the Bavarian Alps.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Munich Marriott Hotel.
  3. Day 3 Lake Chiemsee, Salzburg and Innsbruck.

    Travel alongside the tranquil waters of Lake Chiemsee on your way to Salzburg in Austria, where the spires and domes of the Old Town are often draped in snow come December. A walk with your Local Expert will show you Mozart’s family home and the rosy hues of the 500-year-old Christmas Market in front of the cathedral. Head through the mountains to your Innsbruck hotel. Journey to the charming town of Hall in Tirol which boasts one of Austria's best-preserved historic centres. Soak up the unique atmosphere in a 700-year-old building and delight your palate with a medieval banquet and wine.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel AC Hotel Innsbruck.
  4. Day 4 Innsbruck at Leisure and Carriage Ride.

    Enjoy a relaxed start and spend the morning at leisure. Immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere of the Old Town and Christmas Markets, set in front of the Golden Roof, graced by beautifully preserved medieval facades. Enjoy the delightful scenery and crisp, fresh air during your horse-drawn carriage ride, locally known as a Fiaker, through the countryside of Tyrol.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel AC Hotel Innsbruck.
  5. Day 5 The Black Forest via Lindau.

    Travel through the Alberg tunnel, Austria’s longest road tunnel, as you return to Germany and pause in the tiny island-town of Lindau. Walk through the maze of ancient streets down to the harbour. Across the lake, often shrouded in mist, look for the rising silhouette of snow-capped peaks. After time to explore, continue along the shores of the Bodensee to your hotel in the Black Forest for three fabulous nights.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel Steigenberger Hotel Stadt Lörrach, Black Forest.
  6. Day 6 Freiburg Sightseeing.

    Visit Freiburg in the morning, a lively university city with a charming Christmas atmosphere. Walk from the medieval Münster through the heart of the historic old quarter, past colourful stalls offering a range of festive goodies from the Black Forest.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Steigenberger Hotel Stadt Lörrach, Black Forest.
  7. Day 7 Strasbourg and Alsace experience.

    Cross the Rhine to the region of Alsace, wedged between the Black Forest and the Vosges Mountains. This area has changed nationality four times since 1870! Arrive in Strasbourg, the City at the Crossroads, where the Christmas Market is the oldest and one of the largest in France. Spend time in a cosy neighbourhood of timbered fairy-tale buildings, with Christmas shops and a gingerbread bakery, warm with fragrant promise. Return to Germany and venture to a local restaurant for a delightful dinner of local specialties, accompanied by wine.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel Steigenberger Hotel Stadt Lörrach, Black Forest.
  8. Day 8 The Swiss City of Zürich.

    Cross the Swiss border and head for Zürich where sightseeing includes the imposing Grossmünster, elegant Fraumünster, and winding alleys of the Old Town alongside the River Limmat. A highlight is Europe’s biggest indoor Christmas extravaganza held in the main railway station, with over 160 wooden chalets and a three-storey Christmas tree, draped with Swarovski crystals. Toast to the culmination of your Yuletide journey during a festive Celebration Dinner with wine at a local restaurant.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel Mövenpick Hotel Zürich-Airport.
  9. Day 9 Depart Zürich.

    Enjoy a relaxed breakfast before checking out. Complimentary transfers to the airport, by hotel shuttle, depart every 15 minutes.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
W550-alpine-christmas-markets-map-new-iv-19.jpg
Always included in your GET vacation

Included Insight Services

  • Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
  • We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
  • If your arrival and/or departure flights are as per the itinerary start and end dates, then transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times, or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way from/to the airport.

Authentic Dining

  • Munich: At the Christmas Market, meet a stallholder and taste the aromatic and utterly delicious Lebkuchen with a glass of Glühwein.
  • Hall in Tirol: Situated perfectly in a 700-year-old building in the charming town of Hall in Tirol, enjoy a medieval banquet of Austrian specialties with wine.
  • Zürich: The Swiss just love good food and wine, a decorative, well-laden table, and a touch of Gemütlichkeit - all of which you will find at your warm Celebration Dinner.
  • Dining Summary: 8 Breakfasts (B) and 5 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

Insight Experiences

  • Salzburg: With a Local Expert, see Mozart’s family home and the 500-year-old Christmas Market in front of the cathedral. You'll also view the Hohensalzburg fortress and see Residenz Fountain when you spend some time in the Old Town.

Top Rated Highlights

  • Christmas Markets: All departures will experience the wonderment of the Christmas Markets of each city, some of the oldest in Europe.
  • Munich: During your orientation of the city with your Travel Director, see the Victory Arch, Town Hall and Glockenspiel in Marienplatz.
  • Innsbruck: During your orientation you will see the Golden Roof and Imperial Palace in the Old Town.
  • Innsbruck: Meet your coachman and enjoy a delightful journey through Tyrol's picturesque countryside, on your horse-drawn Fiaker.
  • Lindau: Your Travel Director takes you to the Harbour and Old City Hall. Walk the medieval streets of this island-town and browse the shops on Maximillium Strasse.
  • Lörrach: Explore the town located on the borders of Germany, France and Switzerland and see the ruins of Rotteln Castle.
  • Freiburg: Enjoy a romantic walk through the medieval cobbled streets of Freiburg and soak in the magic of its Christmas Markets. See the medieval Münster and spend time in the historic old quarter.
  • Strasbourg: Exploring the Christmas Markets is like stepping directly into a fairytale, where glittering lights and the scent of cinnamon enchant your senses. Here you visit France’s oldest Christmas Markets, set in front of the Cathedral. Spend time in the atmospheric neighbourhood of La Petite France.
  • Zürich: During your orientation of the city, your Travel Director will show you the Grossmünster, Fraumünster and elegant Bahnhofstrasse.
  • Zürich: Attend Europe’s biggest indoor Christmas Market with its magnificent Swarovski crystal-decorated Christmas tree.
  • Scenic Drives: Throughout your travels, enjoy beautiful views of the Austrian Alps and Lake Bodensee.

Dates & Prices
Airfare is not included, but can be added to quote upon request
  • Definite Departure
  • Inclusion Change
Price Discount Availability Price
  • Inclusion Change: One of the scheduled inclusions on this tour has been modified or scheduled for a different day.
Optional Add-Ons

Optional Experiences are subject to change. Your Travel Director will supply you with a final list of Optional Experiences available on your trip. Optional Experiences cannot be booked online; they can be purchased during your trip through your Travel Director.

Munich

Bavarian Dinner

Tonight we'll soak in the lively atmosphere of a popular traditional restaurant. We'll enjoy traditional Bavarian hospitality and sample delicious regional specialties and local beer.
Adult Price: €65

Linderhof and Oberammergau

South of Munich, we'll venture from the magnificence of the Bavarian Alps to the world-renowned passion-play village of Oberammergau. Admire the artistically—decorated architecture of local homes, churches and of Ettal Monastery. Then, we're on to mad King Ludwig’s baroque fantasy—the rococo splendor of Linderhof castle, set in beautiful gardens.
Adult Price: €40

Innsbruck

Tyrolean Evening

Enjoy a lively evening of traditional entertainment, featuring dancers in national costume, yodeling and entertainment typical of the life, crafts and traditions of the Tyrolean people. Two drinks are included. (This evening may not be available on every departure.)
Adult Price: €45

Alsace

Colmar Excursion

Nestled in the heart of the Alsatian vineyards lies the impossibly quaint little town of Colmar. Our local guide will help you to discover its half-timbered bye-ways and Venetian style canals. Afterward, free time to explore the four Christmas markets.
Adult Price: €36

Reviews
Service
Vacation
Independent Reviews
Stowe Beam
Friday, January 4, 2019
Service
Superior customer service always.
Vacation
Tour director needs to slow her walking pace a little.
Barbara Micheletti
Friday, December 21, 2018
Service
It was my first time on a coach tour so I wasn't quite sure what to expect. The coach was nice and clean and fairly comfortable. The hotels were nice for the most part. Passing through the countryside was quite lovely. Our guide was friendly and quite knowledgeable.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We are so happy to see that you enjoyed your first guided vacation. We hope it's the first of many adventures to come, and we hope to be able to help you plan your next trip!
Friday, December 28, 2018
Vacation
It was a great time for the price.
Deirdre Mccormack
Wednesday, December 19, 2018
Service
Overall good trip but two issues: Frustrated at logistics for airport pickup as we were faced with 2 1/2 hour wait at Munich airport or E70 taxi to hotel. Perhaps better pickup times to avoid expensive cab ride would be in order. Hotel in Villengen-Schwenninge was "quaint" but really out of the way and too much bus time back and forth to Strasbourg/Colmar.
Vacation
Would have liked more time at the markets; often felt too rushed to shop and to also find quick place to grab lunch before due back at the bus.
Lawrence Posner
Monday, December 10, 2018
Service
ELLEN POPPERS!! Great tour leader: friendly, knowledgeable, enthusiastic nice touch having umbrellas on the bus -- we needed them
Vacation
fun experience -- good mix of culture & history
Glen Sanders
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
Service
I would buy again. I had a very good experience and would recommend it to anyone
Vacation
The tour was everything I expected and more
Trusted Customer
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Service
Left at the Airport again! Contacted Airport Info sites(3), stopped people that looked like they could help. Not one person could not understand the directions that Insight provided. Being ditched before by GET (at Paris airport) we got a taxi to the hotel, the fare was 61 dollars. Just the tip of the iceberg. Goodbye GET.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We're sorry to hear about your experience arriving in Munich. The scheduled transfer times to the hotel are 10am and 12pm. It appears your flight arrived too late to make the 10am transfer, so there would be a bit of a wait until the next departure. We do apologize if this procedure was not made clear to you and we will be happy the reimburse the cost of your taxi. Our Guest Relations department will be in touch with you shortly. Grand European Travel
Friday, December 18, 2015
Vacation
Get rid of Insight!
Trusted Customer
Thursday, December 10, 2015
Service
The tour sites were excellent, the hotels were excellent and the tour guide and driver were exceptional. I could not have asked for more.
Vacation
Overall we saw a lot in the amount of time we had and all of it enjoyable. I personally did not care for Munich and wished it had not been on the tour. I much preferred seeing the smaller towns where there was a greater sense of history and culture.
Trusted Customer
Sunday, December 28, 2014
Service
I have traveled with Grand European several times and they have always been courteous and helpful.
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you for letting us know about your experience. I'm sorry to see that you were disappointed in some of the aspects of your vacation. We do try to provide convenient hotel accommodations for all our trips and appreciate you letting us know when we fall short of those expectations. I do hope that overall you had an enjoyable trip. Dee-Grand European Travel
Monday, December 29, 2014
Vacation
The destinations on the tour seemed poorly planned. Too much shuttling back and forth between destinations, but if coordinated differently, could have allowed more time to enjoy the various Christmas Markets. Furthermore, the stay in Titisee was a waste. It is a charming town, but since it was low season, everything was closed. There was absolutely nothing to do when we were returned to our hotel. And, if you're going to schedule "free time" if you're placing people in hotels away from the city center, you should arrange for travel to the markets (for example Munich). I love the Christmas Market Cruises, but will never take a coach tour like this again.
Trusted Customer
Friday, December 26, 2014
Service
My husband took a trip with you so he referred me to you. Someone put my husband's email in my name so I received no information. It was corrected at the end of the trip. I had a couple of concerns during the trip and felt I was inconvenienting the tour director. He would not answer when I called his name and made me feel that I was unimportant. It was not what I expected and I was would probably not repeat a trip with Grand European Travel.
Response from Grand European Travel:
I'm so sorry to hear that you were disappointed in this trip. It has become one our most popular vacations during the holiday season, and I apologize that it did not meet your expectations. It is true that optional excursions could change at the last minute due to availability or schedule conflicts. This is one reason we must offer them as optional, since we cannot guarantee their operation. I appreciate your feedback on the vacation itself and your travel director. I will be sharing this information with our quality control office in London immediately. Dee-Grand European Travel
Saturday, December 27, 2014
Vacation
I would have thought that since this was a shopping type trip that it would have been geared to relaying information about shopping. Excursions we signed up for and expected were cancelled. The day's itinerary was changed and no advance notification was given. The dinners included were unacceptable and served at an inappropriate time. The tour guide was difficult to understand. The toilets on one stop were not identified as to their location and it cost $6 to use one in restaurant. The breakfasts served at the hotels were very good.
Trusted Customer
Friday, December 26, 2014
Service
I thought the company did the best they could considering that this is one of the most expensive areas of the world. I thought the tour guide did a good job on this tour. My wife felt that the tour guide should have had a personal shopper orientation, training. He is an effective guide; however, she expected more information on shopping. She as a result was very disappointed. As advertized, this is a market tour. I think that the restaurants should take vegetarians more into account when planning their menus. The rooms where large group meals took place need to be tested for sound echos. The sound of so many people talking simultaneously in two of the rooms where we had formal dinners provided by Grand European Travel caused me great pain. At two of these dinners, I could not hear people across from me and had to yell to be heard. The noise of everyone talking was deafening. I physically hurt for hours after the meal from this very high sound level.
Response from Grand European Travel:
I'm sorry to hear about some of the disappointments you experienced. We do try to accommodate all dietary restrictions, but unfortunately there may be cases when the restaurants are not able to handle the requests. I apologize for the inconvenience as well as the lack of service and noise level at the restaurants. We have already taken steps to act on your valuable feedback. Dee-Grand European Travel
Monday, December 29, 2014
Vacation
This vacation was for my wife who is a shopper and I personally was not that enthusiastic regarding taking this tour. So, I struggled through it. One of the restaurants where we were expected to eat with our hands was offensive to my wife. They also struggled to serve vegetarian food. The meal was suppose to include two alcoholic drinks. I received one beer that was half foam. I asked twice for my second beer and the waitress purposefully ignored me.
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