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European Wonderland

Operated By:
Tour Pace: Comfortable
Parliament by Night, London
Tour Style: First Class
14 Days from $3,218 per person

See Europe through the eyes of your ever-curious children as you embark on a family road trip from Rome to London filled with lashings of lion fights, carnival masks, chariot racing and cheesy pizza you'll learn to make yourself. This is an unforgettable, hands-on exploration of Europe that will bring the destination alive for all ages.

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  1. Board your overnight flight to Europe (not included).
  2. Buckle up Bambinos – we're off on a grand adventure through Europe, launching our Family Experience in the Eternal City of Rome. On arrival to Rome Fiumicino Airport transfers will operate at 9.30am, 12.30pm and 3.30pm. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel. This evening we enjoy a Kick-Off Party with our travel companions and Travel Director that will rock Rome followed by an orientation drive to give you a taste of some of the major sites.

    meal(s):KP
    hotel:Crowne Plaza St. Peter's
  3. Delve into the open-air museum that is Rome, joining a Local Specialist for a sightseeing tour that will see you rub shoulders with St. Peter and the thousands of pilgrims that flock to the impressive square that bears his name. See Michelangelo's famous Pietà statue in St. Peter's Basilica before crossing the Tiber into Ancient Rome. Imagine the thunderous applause of excited spectators cheering their gladiators to victory inside the Colosseum when you visit, and the roar of chariots circling Circus Maximus. This afternoon we enjoy a delicious Cultural Insight into authentic Italian pizza. Learn how to make an Italian pizza that would make any Italian mamma proud, enjoying a slice or two hot out of the oven with la famiglia.
    meal(s):BB, RM
  4. Explore the medieval playground of Siena, strolling through the cobbled streets to the shell-shaped Piazza del Campo, where the festive Palio bareback horse race runs twice a year against the backdrop of colorful flags and emblems. Arriving in Florence this afternoon, we spend time rambling through the Cradle of Renaissance, discovering the best spots to indulge in cioccolata calda. This evening we enjoy all the tastes of Tuscany in an unforgettable Be My Guest experience.
    meal(s):BB, BG
    hotel:Grand Mediterraneo
  5. The treasures of the de' Medici family are on full display as we delve into the centuries of art, architecture and tumultuous history. Join a Local Specialist for a walking tour of the city, visit the Piazza della Signoria, the hub of the city, and view the magnificent marble Duomo. Spend the afternoon at leisure or perhaps join an Optional Experience to snap a selfie next to the Leaning Tower of Pisa before returning to Florence and pounding the pavements in search of the city's tastiest gelatos.
    meal(s):BB
  6. Cross the Apennine Mountains to the city of Bologna where we will join a Local Specialist to view the city's Kissing Towers and Il Gigante, commonly known as Neptune's Fountains. Ditch your diet and indulge in the delicious flavors of what is widely regarded as the gastronomic capital of Italy – chase tortellini around your plate or twirl Spaghetti Bolognese like a local. This afternoon we arrive on the island city of Venice. Spend the rest of the day soaking up the sights and sounds of Italy or enjoy an Optional Experience gondola ride through Venice's labyrinthine canals.
    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Novotel Venezia Mestre Castellana
  7. All aboard! The salty spray of the Venetian Lagoon marks our journey by private launch to the gateway to Venice, St. Mark's Square. See St. Mark's Basilica, the ornate Doge's Palace and Bridge of Sighs, so named for the sound made by condemned prisoners who enjoyed their last view of beautiful Venice before meeting their fate. Watch as talented craftsmen expertly roll the glowing bubble of glass into beautiful crafts and learn about the great Venetian tradition of Carnival masks with a Local Specialist where we'll have an opportunity to create our own colorful alter egos.
    meal(s):BB
  8. Crossing the Veneto Plains, we stop in Verona and pay tribute to Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers at Juliet's Balcony. Magnificent snow-capped peaks surround us as we wind along the scenic alpine St. Gotthard route into central Switzerland. Our home for the next two nights is the winter sports retreat of Engelberg.
    meal(s):BB
    hotel:H+ Hotel & Spa
  9. Walk across the flower-lined 14th century wooden Chapel Bridge and into a time fairy-tale land of lakes and lions. See the giant dying lion hewn from sandstone rock to commemorate the heroism of the Swiss Guard during the French Revolution. Ascend one of the magnificent surrounding mountains during an Optional Experience or spend the afternoon sampling the rich flavors of delicious Swiss chocolate.
    meal(s):BB, D
  10. From Switzerland, we cross the mighty Rhine River and into France, traveling through the famous Burgundy wine region en route to the City of Light.
    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Novotel Centre Tour Eiffel
  11. Join a Local Specialist on a guided sightseeing tour which includes a drive along the Champs Élysées with views of the magnificent Arc de Triomphe and Place de la Concorde. Ascend to the second level of the Eiffel Tower to see the city laid out before you in all its glory. Spend the rest of the afternoon on your terms. This evening, we close the curtains on an epic family adventure through Europe, celebrating with our travel companions and Travel Director at a special Farewell Dinner.
    meal(s):BB, FD
  12. Leaving Paris behind, we journey past the tragic World War I battlefields of the Somme, crossing from Calais to Dover, watching as the famous White Cliffs come closer and mark our arrival in England. We arrive in London later this afternoon.
    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Crowne Plaza Kings Cross Bloomsbury
  13. Join a Local Specialist for an unforgettable tour of the British capital, including views of Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey.
    meal(s):FB
  14. For now it's time to say a fond farewell to your companions in London at the end of a memorable vacation.
    meal(s):FB
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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.
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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 $900 p.p.

Triple Room Discount: $425 p.p.

Quad Room Discount: $640 p.p.

Guaranteed Room Share is not available on this trip.

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $107 per person.

Share Rooming: Room Share is not available on this trip. Single rooms are not available unless traveling as part of a family group.

Unused London Accommodations: Prices are per person per night $122

Airport transfers: On arrival to Rome Fiumicino Airport transfers will operate at 9:30 am, 12:30 pm and 3:30 pm. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel.

London Airport Transfers: Transfers available to purchase. Conditions apply.

Cruise Connection: This trip starts or ends in a popular cruise port, so you can combine a cruise with a more in-depth guided vacation in Europe.

AARP members SAVE $100 per person on any guided vacation or river cruise!

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

  • 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
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options
  • Most Meals Most Meals
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Cultural Enrichment Cultural Enrichment
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips

Meal Summary

12 nights, 12 hot buffet breakfasts, 5 dinners, 1 dinner, On-trip transport, .

Included Highlights

Be My Guest

  • Our local friends near Florence will host you this evening for a typical Italian meal at their private estate. Try some delicious Italian food in the company of your hosts – a night to remember

Cultural Insight

  • A cooking experience with all the trimmings! Learn how to make tasty Italian pizza from an expert and then eat it. Witness the exquisite craft of glassblowing on Giudecca Island, a delicate tradition that generations of Venetian craftsmen have perfected over the centuries. Learn about the traditional art of Venetian Carnival Masks and paint and decorate your own

Local Specialist

  • For included sightseeing in Rome, Florence, Bologna, Paris and London

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City tour in Rome, Florence, Bologna, Paris, London
  • Orientation of Siena, Venice, Lucerne
  • Visit St. Peter's Basilica and the Colosseum in Rome, the Eiffel Tower in Paris
  • View the ancient sites of Rome, Juliet's Balcony in Verona, St. Mark's Basilica in Venice, the spectacular Alpine scenery of Switzerland, the Chapel Bridge in Lucerne, the White Cliffs of Dover
  • See the Vineyards of Burgundy, the Somme Battlefields

Reviews

Trip not yet reviewed
  • U.S. citizens traveling to Europe must have a current passport 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 countries in the Schengen Area or the UK.

  • The currency for most countries you will visit in Europe is the Euro (€).  Several exceptions apply including the Pound (£) in Great Britain, Scotland and Northern Ireland, and the Swiss Franc (CHF) in Switzerland.

  • While Italy is most famous for pizza and pasta, few travelers are aware of just how varied the country’s culinary offering actually are. 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.  Wine is usually served with the meal, accompanied by mineral water.

    Swiss cuisine is a flavorful blend of German, Italian, and French influences and a wide variety of regional offerings.  Specialty dishes include fondue and raclette (cheese dipping dishes), sausages and rösti (fried potato), bündnerfleisch (air-dried beef) and fondue bourguigon (cubes of steak with various sauces). Swiss pastries and desserts are excellent. There are also spirits made from fruit; the most popular are Kirsch, Pflümli and Williamine. And don’t miss out on the world-class selection of Swiss chocolate.

    The French have an ongoing love affair with food and wine. Meals are lovingly prepared and consumed leisurely through a bevy of appetizers and main courses, usually accompanied by a number of wines. Boeuf bourgignon (beef stew with wine, herbs and vegetables), coq au vin (chicken cooked with bacon in a white wine and herb sauce) and bouillabaisse (fish stew) are featured on many menus. Cheese lovers will not be disappointed with hundreds of varieties to choose from.  And no visit would be complete without a visit to a pâtisserie, with its delicate pastries you will definitely be tempted.

    English specialties include fish and chips, Yorkshire pudding, sausages, stilton cheese, and scones with clotted cream. Culinary experiences to not to miss include a traditional pub meal, afternoon tea, and full English breakfast. 

     

  • We suggest bringing 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. A few important items to bring include sturdy walking shoes and a waterproof jacket with a hood. Keep in mind that your shoulders and knees should be covered while visiting religious sites. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • Tipping through-out Europe is less common or generous than it is in the United States.  Some countries will add a service charge of up to 15%, so be sure to check your bill before leaving extra.  In most places it is appropriate to leave a few euros or between 5% and 10% for exceptional service.  Keep in mind you will likely want to leave cash on the table to ensure your server receives it.  

    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 48 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.

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.

Florence

Visit to Pisa with Tuscan Dinner and Music

Adult Price: € 90

Join us on a visit to Pisa where you will see the remarkable Leaning Tower and will marvel at the monuments on the Square of Miracles. At a Tuscan farmhouse, we will enjoy a selection of local specialties and wines produced in the property. Live music will create an unforgettable atmosphere.

Michelangelo's 'David' & Accademia

Adult Price: € 40

Enjoy an insight into the world of Michelangelo and his masterpiece, David. We have fast track entry to the Academy of Fine Arts and its Michelangelo collection, where you’ll learn all about the life and works of this immortal Renaissance genius through the expert commentary of our Local Specialist.

This optional involves reservation and entrance pre-payments. Cancellation within 24 hours will incur a 50% cancellation fee.

Lucerne

Alpine Farm & Carriage Ride

Adult Price: 67 CHF

A chance to get to know the Swiss, you’ll meet local farmers and enjoy a delightful countryside tour in horse drawn carriages. Soak up the stunning scenery as we trot around a typical rural community, en route to a working farm where you’ll savour local drinks and snacks.

Lake Lucerne Cruise

Adult Price: 40 CHF

Widely considered to be the loveliest of the mountain lakes, much of the shoreline of Lake Lucerne can only be fully appreciated from the water. As we cruise gently by, you'll admire the spectacular homes of the fortunate few privileged to live on its scenic shores.

Mount Titlis Excursion

Adult Price: 98 CHF

With guaranteed snow, two different types of cable car ride and the opportunity to walk inside a glacier, this is Switzerland's most exciting mountain trip. Make sure you wrap up warm, for a wonderful winter experience whatever the weather.

Traditional Folklore Show With Lunch

Adult Price: 68 CHF

Enjoy a delicious lunch (including cheese fondue and one drink) as you listen to yodelling and Alpine horn-blowing, during a lively folklore show of typical Swiss entertainment.

Paris

Nouvelle Eve Cabaret And Dinner

Adult Price: € 139

Join us for dinner with wine included at one of the most prestigious cabaret shows in town, where you’ll watch an evening of exciting acts, stunning tableaux and wonderful entertainment – including the world famous Can-Can. A Parisian night you’ll never forget.

Montmartre Village And Artists' Square

Adult Price: € 37

Dominated by the soaring Sacre Coeur Basilica, you’ll join your Local Specialist to explore Montmartre’s winding streets, unusual galleries and world famous Artist’s Square - once home to the works of Toulouse Lautrec and Picasso. You’ll have time to browse, barter for original art and taste local cuisine, for a real flavour of Montmartre life.

Seine Cruise And Paris Illuminations

Adult Price: € 38

Paris at night is a city transformed. Enjoy this superb 'City of Light' on a leisurely cruise along the River Seine. Afterwards, as we drive through this amazing city, we’ll stop at some vantage points for you to capture the fascinating sights on camera. In summer, this trip may take place before sunset.

Rome

Piazzas and Fountains of Rome

Adult Price: € 33

Starting with a lovely drive and continuing on foot, you'll discover hidden backstreets, piazzas and fountains of the 'Eternal City' with a Local Specialist. Along the way, you'll marvel at the timeless Pantheon, the best-preserved Roman temple in the world. Many additional highlights are revealed on this relaxed tour that also offers free time in a gorgeous Baroque square with street artists, trattorias and gelaterias!

Inside The Vatican Museums And Sistine Chapel

Adult Price: € 54

Join us for an extension to your included sightseeing tour, which gives you a chance to see the artistic masterpieces collected and commissioned by the Popes. You’ll visit the Tapestry Gallery, Gallery of Maps and the Sistine Chapel. Michelangelo spent 4 years preparing the vault and altar wall, and we give you plenty of time to admire just how much painstaking work went into his creations.

This optional involves reservation and entrance pre-payments. Cancellation within 24 hours will incur a 50% cancellation fee.

Venice

Lagoon Cruise to Burano with Food and Drinks

Adult Price: € 70

Join us as we discover the Venetian Lagoon by private boat. You will enjoy a delicious meal with a selection of drinks on the fishermen's island of Burano, famous for its multi-coloured houses - a real photographer's paradise.

Gondolas & Grand Canal

Adult Price: € 69

On arrival in Venice, a private boat will be waiting to take you to St Mark's Square, where you’ll enjoy a gondola ride while being serenaded by local musicians. Later, private water taxi's will take you along Venice's Grand Canal, where you’ll admire the magnificent palazzos and Rialto Bridge.

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