Germany's Cultural Cities & the Romantic Road Escorted Tour
Tour Operator: Collette Vacations Tours
Group Size: Large Group
Tour Type: General
Physical Demands: Low
Departure date: 04/25/2019
Return date: 05/06/2019
Germany’s enigmatic spirit comes to life across Berlin, Hamburg, and Munich. Along storybook pathways and across historic city streets, fall under the spell of this magical country. Tour Berlin and Dachau with an expert city guide, then walk the Fairytale Road guided by the Pied Piper. Visit the Brothers Grimm Museum, and watch fairytales come true at the castle of Rapunzel. On Rothenburg’s breathtaking Romantic Road, go on a “night watchman” tour, and in the birthplace of marzipan and the “schneeball,” sample wines in a cellar restaurant. Try the local beers of Munich. This is Germany at its most captivating – and most romantic.
Day 1-3 : Berlin
Your tour opens in Berlin, Germany’s capital. This city blends a deep history, modern flare and multi-cultural influences. Tonight, join your fellow travelers for a welcome dinner.
This morning, enjoy a traditional city tour that features Charlottenburg Palace, Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, the Schoenberg City Hall, Kurfuerstendamm, the Reichstag building and a stop at “Checkpoint Charlie," the best-known Berlin Wall crossing point between East and West Berlin during the Cold War. This afternoon you may choose to join an optional excursion outside the city to visit Potsdam and the famous Sanssouci Palace.
Day 4-5 : Berlin - Lübeck - Hamburg
Travel to Hamburg, “the Venice of the North,” with winding canals and an impressive harbor that made it a center for trade for centuries. En route, make a stop in the medieval Hanseatic League town of Lübeck, the famed birthplace of marzipan and a UNESCO World Heritage site; join a local guide for a tour of the town and have a chance to visit Café Niederegger to shop for the marzipan they have been making for 200 years. Arrive in Hamburg. Tonight, enjoy dinner out on the town.
Come to know the city on a panoramic tour that showcases the Rathaus (Town Hall), the Alster, St. Michaelis church, the city center, the beautiful Jungfernstieg promenade and, of course, the Port of Hamburg, dubbed "the gateway to the world.” Later, it’s your choice! Board a harbor boat for a narrated cruise around the massive Hamburg shipping port highlighting the key maritime sights -OR- embark on a relaxing boat cruise on Alster Lake to take in stunning views of the shoreline dotted with the homes of Hamburg’s elite. Later we gather for a walking tour of the Reeperbahn area, Hamburg’s red light district, immortalized as the place where the Beatles cultivated their fame in the early 1960s. Join in the fun with your “singing and ukulele-playing local Beatles expert” and travel down memory lane.
Day 6 : Hamburg - Bremen - Hamelin
Today’s first stop is in Bremen, at the beginning of the Fairy Tale Road. Join a local guide for a walking tour of the quaint town featuring the musicians of Brothers Grimm fame, the Town Hall (UNESCO), and ending in the medieval Schnoor district. After free time for lunch, travel to Hamelin, made famous by the Pied Piper legend from the stories of the Brothers Grimm. Feel like you have stepped into a storybook when the “Pied Piper of Hamelin” plays delightful tunes while he leads you on a discovery walk through Hamelin with its charming Tudor-style architecture.
Day 7 : Hamelin - Schönburg and Trendelburg Castles - Kassel - Marburg
This morning you are transported back to childhood as you come face to face with the real life places, and characters, that inspired the fairy tale classics. First, meet a local storyteller at Schönburg Castle, where you will be greeted by the Princess and her Prince Charming. Have time to explore the enchanting grounds before traveling to the famed “Rapunzel’s Castle” – Trendelburg. Continue on to Kassel, home to the Brothers Grimm Museum. At the museum, an expert will lead you on a tour through the interactive displays that bring you through the life of the Grimm Brothers. Journey to the medieval university town of Marburg with its endless alleys and stairways that lead to the castle perched above.
Day 8 : Marburg - Würzburg - Rothenburg ob der Tauber
Journey to the perfectly preserved medieval town of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, located in the middle of the famous Romantic Road and in the heart of the Franconia wine region. En route, make a stop in Würzburg, a Bavarian wine town known for its lavish Baroque and Rococo architecture. You will enjoy time to explore the town on your own before continuing to Rothenburg, located high on a plateau overlooking the Tauber River. Arrive at your city center hotel, the perfect location to discover this captivating town. Take an evening stroll to a local restaurant where you’ll enjoy a tasting of local wines followed by a traditional German dinner. Later, join a colorfully costumed local expert for the famous “Night Watchman” walking tour of the medieval town.
Day 9 : Rothenburg ob der Tauber
It’s your choice! Walk to a local bakery to learn how a local favorite treat, “schneeball” pastries – snowballs – are made -OR- tour the Medieval Crime and Justice Museum. Later, we gather to spend time at the famous Käthe Wohlfahrt Christmas Museum where you will be treated to a private tour, enjoy an ornament-making demonstration, and shop for handmade Christmas ornaments. The remainder of the day is yours to do as you choose.
Day 10-12 : Rothenburg ob der Tauber - Neuschwanstein Castle - Munich
Leave Rothenburg behind and make your way through mountains and along winding country roads for a tour inside the famous Neuschwanstein Castle. Built by “crazy” King Ludwig II, it is the most photographed castle in Germany. Next, continue to Munich, the exciting capital of Bavaria. Your evening is free to explore the city independently.
Come to know the energy of this lively and fascinating city during a panoramic walking tour that highlights the world-famous Glockenspiel* and Marienplatz – a beautiful square surrounded by shops, restaurants and cafés. This afternoon, it’s your choice! Join a local guide and venture to the innovative BMW World to learn the history of this dynamic global automaker; then ride to the top of the Olympic Tower to take in stunning views of the Munich cityscape -OR- embark on a poignant journey through history as you travel to the Dachau Memorial; a local expert guides you through the former concentration camp where you will learn firsthand about the terrors as well as the resilience of the human spirit that occurred within those walls. The remainder of your day is at leisure. This evening, join your fellow travelers for a beer tasting followed by a farewell dinner in one of Munich’s most famous restaurants.
This morning your tour comes to a close