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European Rhapsody

Operated By:
Tour Pace: Active
Central Market, Budapest
Tour Style: Premium
12 Days from $3,376 per person

Discover Europe's grandeur and the legacy of the powerful Habsburg dynasty on this soul-stirring journey of Europe's imperial cities.Be inspired by the family heritage of royalty as you meet a castle owner in the Rhine Valley and enjoy dinner at a family home in beautiful Budapest. Your journey culminates in timeless Venice with its romantic and lavish palaces.

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  1. Board your overnight flight to Europe (not included).

  2. Welcome to London. After checking into your hotel, the afternoon is free to enjoy a city that is famous for its pomp and pageantry. Perhaps relax with a walk along the Serpentine in Hyde Park or window shop in the elegant boutiques of Knightsbridge? Alternatively, you may want to stroll along the Thames to the iconic Tower Bridge and Tower of London.

    hotel:Park Plaza Victoria, London
  3. This morning meet your Travel Director and transfer to London’s St. Pancras Station to board the high-speed Eurostar for a rail journey via the revolutionary Channel Tunnel. Once in Amsterdam, join your Travel Director in the evening for a Welcome Reception. Get to know your fellow guests during a cruise, along some of the many quaint, tree-lined canals. Admire the elegant merchant houses from the 16th and 17th centuries, their facades are a reflection of when trade flourished during Amsterdam's Golden Age. Relax as you pass stunning gables, beautiful churches and the iconic Magere Brug, better known as the Skinny Bridge. Disembark and venture to a local restaurant for your Welcome Dinner.

    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Grand Hotel Amrath, Amsterdam
  4. Cross into Germany and head for the romantic Rhine Gorge. Visit a castle set upon the Rhine, for a private estate viewing with the owner. Unlock the secrets of Rhineland's modern kings and queens as you learn the history of the castle and surrounding area. Continue to Würzburg where there is time to stroll through the heart of the Old Town and down to the Alte Mainbrücke, the 16th century bridge over the River Main, adorned with sandstone statues. From here, admire the city at night and appreciate the mighty Marienburg Fortress on the opposite side of the river.

    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Maritim Hotel, Wurzburg
  5. In the morning, see the Residenz Palace – the immense baroque palace of the Prince Bishops and one of the most important landmarks in Germany. Venture to Rothenburg-ob-der Tauber, the most well-preserved town on the Romantic Road. With an artisan baker, enjoy a demonstration and learn the history of the traditional pastry Schneeballen (snowball), followed by a tasting. Continue east to the Czech border. Pass through the town of Pilsen, renowned for its beer before reaching the Golden City of Prague. With the afternoon free, perhaps take a river cruise through the heart of the city, rummage through the renowned antique shops or shop for the finest Bohemian crystal.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Royal, Prague
  6. Join a Local Expert in the morning for guided sightseeing of one of the most beautiful and intact historical centers in Europe. Start with the 1,000-year-old Prague Castle, to admire the stained glass of St. Vitus Cathedral and enjoy amazing views over the Old Town. Finish in the Old Town Square where the mechanical antics of the Astronomical Clock's glockenspiel that delights onlookers each hour. Then, the city is all yours to explore with the rest of the day at leisure.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Royal Prague
  7. Start the day with a journey through the beautiful forested countryside of Bohemia. Journey through Slovakia and travel on to Hungary, following the River Danube to Budapest. Stand atop Gellért Hill where the colossal Liberty Statue is positioned in front of the Citadella watching over the city. Marvel at extensive panoramic views as you look out over the famous river dividing Buda and Pest - the two sides linked by the mighty Chain Bridge and the newer, elegant Elizabeth Bridge. With the afternoon free, perhaps join a cruise along the Danube to see the city from a different perspective. In the evening, enjoy an intimate dinner with the locals.

     

    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Hotel President, Budapest
  8. Join your Local Expert for a visit to the grand Central Market Hall. Spread over three levels, the market is a foodie's paradise, brimming with aromatic food stalls offering delicious salamis, spicy paprika, delicious Hungarian wines and an array of flavored Pálinkas, a traditional Hungarian fruit brandy. At the market you will be given the opportunity to taste authentic Hungarian delicacies from the region. Then, enjoy free time to browse the boutiques of Vaci Street. Continue your travels, past the eagle overlooking the town of Tatabanya, to the Austrian border and through pleasant farming country to the imperial capital of Vienna.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Hilton, Vienna
  9. In the morning, there is the option to join a private tour of Maria Theresa's Schönbrunn Palace and formal gardens. Later, join your Local Expert for a walk through Innere Stadt, the first district and historic core of Vienna. Get your camera ready for a drive around the famous Ring Road. This grand boulevard, built along the lines of the old city walls, showcases many of the capital's architectural masterpieces, including the Opera House, magnificent Hofburg Imperial Residence and Parliament building. At a typical Viennese Coffeehouse, meet a local who will share tales from a by-gone era as you enjoy coffee and delicious Sachertorte - a Viennese chocolate specialty.

    meal(s):BB, MT
    hotel:Hilton, Vienna
  10. This day's route takes you past quiet villages, through Styria's forested mountains and into the Carinthian Lake District. Continue past Europe's warmest lake, the Wörthersee, to cross into Italy near Tarvisio. Then follow mountain valleys and cascading streams down to the Veneto Plain en route to the unique city of Venice. Your final evening is truly a special experience, starting with a private water taxi along the Grand Canal, to arrive at your central hotel. Your Celebration Dinner is at a local restaurant, where you can toast the wrap-up of your adventures with good food, wine and company. Finish in true Venetian style - sip Bellini cocktails at twilight whilst being serenaded by an ensemble of talented musicians, and admire the peace of St. Mark's Square long after the day-trippers have gone to their mainland hotels.

    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Bauer Palladio, Venice
  11. Wake up to one of Europe's most romantic cities. Witness the skill of glassblowers on a visit to a traditional arts center. Only minutes away by private launch is St. Mark's Square where the city's former wealth and power is evidenced by the riches of St. Mark's Basilica. Also admire the Doge's Palace and its adjoining Bridge of Sighs. A highlight is meeting a gondolier to learn about the age-old tradition of gondola navigation. With the rest of the day free, why not cruise along the Venetian lagoon to the island of Burano for a meal of local specialties and wine?

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Bauer Palladio, Venice
  12. Bid farewell to this enchanting city with departure transfers by water taxi, arriving at Venice Marco Polo Airport at 08:00 and 09:30.

    meal(s):BB

30 Day Refund Guarantee

We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

Add air to your reservation

Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.
  • Definite Departure
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
27 Apr 18 8 May 18 checkmark $3,650$3,376pp Early PaymentPay by Feb 28 Request Quote Book Now
8 Jun 18 19 Jun 18 checkmark $3,650pp Request Quote Book Now
10 Aug 18 21 Aug 18 checkmark $3,550pp Request Quote Book Now
5 Oct 18 16 Oct 18 checkmark $3,650$3,376pp Early PaymentPay by Feb 28 Request Quote Book Now
21 Dec 18 1 Jan 19 checkmark $3,925$3,631pp Early PaymentPay by Feb 28 Request Quote Book Now

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Single Room Supplement: from $930 p.p.

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $116 per person.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift!  Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

Past Travelers: Save an additional 5% off the Land Only price of the vacation.

  • Cultural Enrichment Cultural Enrichment
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Most Meals Most Meals
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options
  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Sightseeing with Local Experts Sightseeing with Local Experts
  • VIP Access VIP Access
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels

Included Dining

10 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 1 Morning Tea (MT) and 4 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee. 

Signature Experiences

Amsterdam

  • Cruise in a glass-topped boat through the city's historic waterways, where wealthy merchants built mansions during the Golden Age of the 17th century.

Rhine Valley

  • The beautiful scenery of the Rhine River is supplemented by the many castles dotted along its banks. Delight in a private estate viewing at one of these Rhineland castles and learn more about these living cultural monuments situated along the Middle Rhine.
  • Discover Rothenburg-ob-der Tauber, the most well-preserved town on the Romantic Road. With an artisan baker, enjoy a demonstration and learn the history of the traditional pastry Schneeballen (snowball), followed by a tasting.

Wurzburg

  • See the Residenz Palace as you explore the old town. Stand on the statue-lined Alte Mainbrucke and see the Marienburg fortress.  

Prague

  • Bewitched by the gargoyles of St. Vitus Cathedral and ghosts of Bohemian Kings, this majestic city is where you'll join a Local Expert on a private guided tour through the courtyards of Prague Castle. Enjoy views over the Vltava River before visiting Old Town Square to see the Astronomical Clock. 

Budapest

  • Spend some time in the popular pedestrian shopping street of Váci Utca. From the heights of Gellért Hill, in front of the Citadella, see the mighty Danube with its many bridges linking Buda and Pest.

Vienna

  • Walk through the first district, the Inner Stadt, as your Local Expert reveals why this s the historic core of the city. You will also tour the Ring Roads to see the Hofburg Imperial Residence, Opera House, Parliament Building and Karlskirche. 

Venice

  • Meet a gondolier and learn about the age-old tradition of gondola navigation.
  • Witness the ancient skill of glassblowing and watch artisans create delicate works of art.

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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.

Prague

Prague By Night

Adult Price: € 51.00

A wonderful introduction to the “Golden City”. Begin with spectacular views over Prague and the Vlatava River from the heights of the historic Strahov Monastery. Then explore the cobbled streets of the lesser town by mini-bus of motorized train. Enjoy a short photo stop in the old Town Square. By night the atmosphere is magical. Finally, enjoy a drink and old Czech music as you cruise along the Vlatava – the perfect vantage point to admire Prague’s buildings and Monuments. (Occasionally this excursion may be operated without the river cruise at EURO 33).

Prague

Czech Countryside Evening

Adult Price: € 61.00

Let's explore some Czech countryside, starting with a visit to Lidice, a town totally destroyed in World War II as an infamous act of retribution, with all it's menfolk murdered and the women and children taken away. See the memorials erected in their honour in a town rebuilt with international donations. Then on to a nearby village for a hearty and delicious Czech dinner. This is accompanied by famous Czech pilsners or local wine. Musicans and dancers ensure a lively atmosphere with traditional song and dance from Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia. Na zdraví!

Budapest

Danube Cruise with Drinks

Adult Price: € 44.00

The most spectacular and leisurely way to discover this fairy-tale city is a private cruise on the Danube with a glass of fine Hungarian wine in hand. See Margaret Island, the Houses of Parliament, Castle Hill with its Fisherman’s Bastion, the Royal Palace, the Citadel and the University.

Vienna

Dinner In A Country Mansion

Adult Price: € 62.00

Cross the Danube, passing the famous Prater Park en route to one of Austria's most famous restaurants. Former patrons include Napoleon, the Emperor Franz Joseph, Liz Taylor and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Once through the door of this historic country mansion you're transported to a different world! Old memorabilia, autographed photos and other paraphernalia cover the ceilings, walls and even the rest rooms. Choose from traditional Austrian fare, enjoy unlimited drinks and be serenaded by musicians at your table. A fun-filled experience never to be forgotten!

Vienna

eatwith Experience

eatwith is the world’s leading community for authentic food experiences with locals in over 130 countries. Choose between our hand-selected hosts and dine like a local with a local. Fully immerse yourself in food and culture while meeting other travelers at your table and experience the magic of social dining. Transport is not included in this optional experience. €45 - €65

Vienna

Gala Viennese Concert

Adult Price: € 54.00

Enjoy a wonderful concert of Viennese Classical music performed by highly acclaimed soloists and dancers. During this special evening, enjoy a glass of champagne along with some of the most famous works by Johann Strauss and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. (On occasion dinner will be included EURO 99)

Vienna

Vienna Woods & Heurigen Dinner

Adult Price: € 58.00

Escape central Vienna and drive out to the thickly forested hills which surround the city's western flank for a lively evening of food, wine and song. In a typical "Heuriger" village tavern, enjoy a wonderful dinner of authentic fare, complete with live Schrammelmusik and the famous full-bodied wines.

Vienna

Schönbrunn Palace and Gardens

Adult Price: € 45.00

The Imperial Summer Palace of Schönbrunn offers an amazing journey through the centuries of Hapsburg rule. It is perfectly preserved and richly decorated with treasures from around the globe. Each room has a story to tell, so of course, you’ll have a Local Specialist to bring it to life and VIP entrance to make the most of your time.

Venice

Experience Venice by Gondola Serenade

Adult Price: € 44.00

Glide gracefully on a gondola along Venice’s dreamy, narrow waterways; full of character and colour. While your gondolier navigates the canals, you can take in the city’s elegant architecture. And they may even serenade you with an Italian classic.

Venice

Burano Excursion & Meal

Adult Price: € 70.00

Leave the hustle of St Mark's Square behind on a delightful private cruise around the islands of the Venetian lagoon. Alight at the island of Burano, a photographer's paradise, famous for its candy coloured houses, artisan lace makers and leaning bell tower that would give Pisa a good run for its money. Enjoy a superb meal sampling the local specialities with wine included. An excursion not to be missed!

Venice

Hidden Venice

Adult Price: € 34.00

To only experience Venice's big set pieces -- St Mark's Square; the Rialto; the Grand Canal -- is to miss out on a hidden world full of surprises! Join a Local Expert for a fascinating walk through some of the lesser known quarters of Venice. The back lanes and ‘campi’, small squares, where tourists seldom tread are full of history and great places to sample local life.

  • U.S. citizens traveling to the Netherlands, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, Hungary and Italy must have a current passport that is valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. No visa is required for U.S. citizens entering these countries.

  • The currency in the Czech Republic is the Koruna, in Austria is the Euro, in Hungary is the Forint, and in the Netherlands, Germany and Italy is the Euro. While it’s a good idea to bring some money for when you first arrive on your trip, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • If you like meat and potatoes, chances are you’ll love the food in the Czech Republic. The country is also known for its long-standing tradition for beer. Most towns have at least one brewery, so it’s no surprise that the Czech consume more beer per capita than any other country. In Austria you’ll find more hearty cuisine, but nothing beats the desserts. Try delicious treats like Viennese Sachertorte (dense chocolate cake) and apple strudel. In Hungary you’ll find hearty specialties including goulash, winter salami, pork stew, and chicken paprikash. While Italy is most famous for pizza and pasta, few travelers are aware of just how varied the country’s culinary offering actually are. In fact, each of the 20 regions has its own distinctive cuisine. Traditionally, lunch (pranzo) is the most substantial meal of the day. A full meal consists of antipasto (starter), a primo piatto (pasta, rice or soup), a secondo piatto (meat or fish) with a side, or contorno (vegetable or salad), then frutta (fresh fruit). Finish with espresso and maybe a limoncello or grappa.  

  • We suggest packing a variety of lightweight clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. It’s important to bring comfortable walking shoes and a waterproof jacket. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • When dining out it’s appropriate to leave up to 10 percent gratuity for good service at restaurants.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity.  We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 24 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions.

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