Hiking, Biking, Mountain-biking, etc. Obtain hiking maps from the hotel concierge and inquire about cost of bike rentals.
Musée du Louvre
This enormous building, constructed around 1200 as a fortress and rebuilt in the mid-16th century for use as a royal palace, began its career as a public museum in 1793. See the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo and Winged Victory. (Palais Royal - Musée du Louvre)
Climb this towering edifice that was built for the World Fair of 1889, held to commemorate the centennial of the French Revolution. Named after its designer, Gustave Eiffel, it stands 1050ft high and held the record as the world’s tallest structure until 1930. The first level has a new glass floor, theater, eateries, and exhibits describing the tower's construction. A champagne bar has opened on the very top floor. You can pre-order tickets online as lines can be quite long.
Avenue des Champs-Elysées
Explore some of Paris's most famous Cafés: Café de la Paix, designed by Garnier and recalling décor of a past era, or Café de Flore claiming to have been the heart of the Existentialist Movement during the early part of the last century with Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, Camus and others regularly meeting there.
Housing works by Picasso received by the State after his death, the museum also holds the artist’s personal collection. (Saint-Paul)
To avoid the long ticket line at the Orsay Museum, use your Paris Museum Pass. From the Orsay, you can now stroll or bike the new Left Bank riverside promenade that stretches to Pont de l'Alma.
Shopping in Paris is magical. No other city can match the experience. Discover to-die-for creations from world famous designers. Wander in the food markets and antique stores. Paris offers the finest jewelry with the most outré fashion concepts. Time Out Paris, summed it all up in 100 essential boutiques that capture the sparkle of shopping in the French capital.
Domaine de Chantilly
A day trip to Chantilly may take you to the recently renovated horse museum that has a beautiful display of equine-related history and art. Museum entry includes a walk through the stables and a dressage demonstration daily in peak season. Horse lovers can pay extra for an equestrian show with riders in frilly outfits and horses prancing to music.
Our stop in Cologne is just long enough for you to get a quick bite to eat and take a look at the world's largest Gothic cathedral. It is a World Heritage Site and Cologne's most famous landmark. For four years, 1880-84, it was the tallest structure in the world, until the completion of the Washington Monument followed by the Eiffel Tower. It has the second-tallest church spires and because of its enormous twin spires, it also presents the largest facade of any church in the world.
A visit to the famous Heidelberg Castle is included in your itinerary. If you're up to it, take a taxi to Heidelberg's Old Town after dinner. The best way to enjoy is to simply wander around and see what you find. The Old Town doesn't cover a particularly large area, so there's no chance of you getting lost. The best starting point for your exploration of the Old Town is probably Bismarckplatz. From Bismarckplatz walk down the pedestrian Hauptstrasse (high street). Ask your tour director about Heidelberg's nightlife.
Opened in 1826 by Ludwig I, the Alte Pinakothek (Old Picture Gallery) represents the pinnacle of the Emperor's achievements as a collector.
One of the oldest English-style landscape gardens and one of the largest municipal parks in Europe, the Englischer Garten is a must visit while in Munich. Visit the Chinese pagoda with adjoining beer garden, the Monopteros Greek temple, a river and a boating lake. Visitors can also attend a traditional tea ceremony in the Japanese tea house.
Marienplatz, Munich's main square was founded by Henry the Lion in 1158. Once a market, it is now a major tourist attraction. People marvel at the gothic facade of the town hall. Your tour director will take you to hear the bells in the town hall tower. The ringing of the bells is accompanied by a 'glockenspiel' depicting a medieval dance and the wedding of Duke William V and Renata von Lothringen.
Built for the 1972 Olympic Games, the Olympic complex is now used for a variety of leisure activities ranging from sports events to concerts or just touring the park.
For a BMW enthusiast it is one of the highlights of a visit to Germany. Since its opening in 1973, the BMW Museum has been a place that documents the history of BMW and places it in the context of the present and future. The stated aim of the museum is to fascinate visitors with exciting topics about mobility, communication and society.
Anne Frank House
See the place where Anne Frank went into hiding and wrote her famous diary during World War II. For more than two years, her diary became an outlet for describing the events in her daily life. The diary has since been published in 60 different languages.
The finest works from the 17th century are in the Rijksmuseum, “The Masterpieces,” are on display in the Philips Wing of the museum. The museum recently completed its largest rebuilding, renovation and modernization program in its history.
Vincent Van Gogh Museum
The Museum houses the largest collection of Van Gogh’s work. You will find more than 200 exceptional paintings from the Master’s hand, as well as 500 drawings and 700 written documents. Together these provide a fantastic insight into his life and work.
This multimedia event acquaints you with the world of Heineken, the world’s largest beer exporter. The presentation is both fun and educational.
Best known of all Florence's sights, this bridge was the only one spared by the retreating Germans in 1944. Over the centuries flooding took its toll and only a few traces of the 10th-century bridge remain. Built in the middle of the 14th-century, it was originally filled with a variety of shops that included wool merchants and green grocers. Grand Duke Fernandino I had these replaced with goldsmiths to gentrify royalty's route to Pitti Palace, reached via the Vasari Corridor that passes over the bridge.
The Medici family reserved rooms for their prestigious collection during use of the gallery as the magistrate's court in the 1700s. The gallery contains works by Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Caravaggio and Botticelli. The corridors which feature ceilings with splendid frescoes are lined with Roman and sixteenth-century sculptures. We advise that you make reservations BEFORE your arrival in Florence if you wish to visit the Uffizi Gallieries.
The Accademia Gallery is best-known for Michelangelo's "David" placed there after four centuries in Piazza Signoria. It is housed in a specially constructed hall. Other works by Michelangelo include some of his 'Slave’ series and his sculpture of San Matteo. You can also find an impressive collection of paintings from the 13th to16th-centuries. Among the gallery's most important works are: a Sienese School Crucifix from the 13th-century, 24 panels by Taddeo Gaddi representing scenes from the life of Christ and St Francis and Giovanni da Milano's Pietà.
Piazza del Duomo
The legendary duomo is famous for its dome: Brunelleschi's Renaissance masterpiece. Completed in 1436, he created a double dome shell so that the dome is entirely self-supporting. Building started in 1296 on the site of the Roman basilica of Santa Reparata of which there are still visible remains. The existing Neo-Gothic façade was added in the 19th century. Covering a massive 3600 square meters, the frescoes inside the dome depict the Last Judgement.
Tradition has it that throwing a coin over your left shoulder into the fountain guarantees a swift return to the eternal city. Anita Ekberg's dip in the fountain was immortalized in Fellini's 'La Dolce Vita', and Italian actor Toto even sold it to an American, passing himself off as its owner. Designed by Nicola Salvi for Pope Clemente XII, it was completed in the second half of the 1700s. The statues in the center represent Neptune supported by Tritons on either side and the Rococo-style Poli Palace provides the perfect backdrop.
The Pantheon was commissioned by Marcus Agrippa, restored by Domitian, and subsequently rebuilt by Hadrian (who added the dome) before being turned into a church in the early 7th-century by Pope Boniface IV. The building's sole source of light is the opening at the dome's apex (the oculus). According to popular legend, this formed the base for the bronze pinecone that is now in the Vatican's 'Pigna' courtyard where it is used as a fountain. Many famous Italians are buried in the Pantheon, including Renaissance painter Raphael and King Vittorio Emanuele I.
This area of Rome was originally built at the time of Augustus as a port where storehouses held goods. Trastevere is a picturesque medieval neighborhood located on the west bank of the Tiber River. The heart of the district is Piazza di Santa Maria with its church, 17th-century palazzo and a fountain, designed by architects such as Bernini, Fontana and Della Porta. There are also some well-conserved medieval houses.
St. Mark's Square
Piazza San Marco or St. Mark's Square is Venice's most famous square. What appears to be a rectangle is actually a trapezium, and when you look up at the basilica, the piazza seems very large, although it is only 175m long. On both sides of the piazza are the ‘Procuratie’ buildings which housed the procurators of San Marco.
For a long time this was the only way to cross the Canal Grande. A previous bridge was replaced by this one, designed by Antonio da Ponte, built 1554-1591. You find a variety of shops on the bridge selling souvenirs.
Basilica di San Marco – Campanile
You get a splendid view from the tallest bell tower in Venice. Even though the tower was erected at the beginning of the 20th century, it is an exact replica of the original 15th-century bell tower. In 1609, Galileo Galilei exhibited his telescope here, and during the carnival, the bell tower used to serve as a stage for the tight rope-walkers who entertained the doge with their acrobatics.
Vatican City is a city-state located in the middle of Rome. As the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church, it is home to the Pope and a trove of iconic art and architecture. Its Vatican Museums house ancient Roman sculptures such as Laocoön and His Sons and Renaissance frescoes in the Raphael Rooms. The Sistine Chapel is famous for Michelangelo’s painted ceiling. St. Peter's Basilica stands on the traditional site where Peter - the apostle who is considered the first Pope - was crucified and buried. The Basilica also houses Michelangelo's beautiful Pietà completed when Michelangelo was just 24 years old.
The best way to see the Europe is by private deluxe motor coach. Door-to-door service with all the spectacular scenery in between. Our modern fleet of Mercedes, Volvos (or comparable) coaches for continental Europe are air- conditioned for your comfort. Enjoy deep-cushioned reclining lounge chairs, wide panoramic picture windows and a built-in stereophonic sound system. Our drivers are picked for their experience, skill, dependability and personality. Travelers to other exotic destinations enjoy modern mini vans or motor coaches for the transfers between each location while safari guests are transported in 4 x 4 land cruisers.
Many programs also include the fun of travel by ship from Italy to Greece or along the Rhine River, sleek trains or cable cars, private sailing yachts in the Greek Isles, bicycles in Holland, and jeeps in Dubai, just for the fun of it.
Special Destination Tours
The majority of transportation on other programs is also by private deluxe motor coach unless stated otherwise in the respective itinerary ( i.e.: mini vans in Costa Rica). Please see each tour page for exact details.
Luxury motor coach for European tours
Enjoy your journey with a professional driver at the wheel. Enjoy the scenery and view mountains and valleys, cities and villages through panoramic windows. Our luxury, air-conditioned motor coaches provide you with stylish and comfortable seats.
Eurostar train and high-speed intercity trains
Eurostar is the high-speed rail service directly linking the UK to France via the Channel Tunnel. It started operating in 1994, providing city center to city center services. Eurostar departs from London's St. Pancras Station. Fast journey times London-Paris in 2 hours 15 minutes. Journey from Paris to Nice on a TGV high-speed train in just over 5 hours. Enjoy air-conditioning and modern seats as you pass through the French countryside at up to 200 miles per hour. Other intercity trains in Europe travel at speeds of up to 125 mph featuring individual seating or in groups of four sharing a table.Travel by rail in Europe is efficient and fun.
Overnight cruise Italy – Greece
Greek ferries are used to travel from southern Italy to Greece. Departures are from Bari and Brindisi, Italy. Normal accommodations are 4-share on all vessels. Sea travel is fun and ships have amenities to make certain that you have a great time starting the moment you step on board including swimming pools, discos, bars and casinos.
Dubai land cruisers & coaches
Desert Safari includes off- road driving in the Dubai desert. The drivers are qualified to operate the 4x4 vehicles in the desert. These cars are air-conditioned and safety features include seat belts and roll bars. Six passengers can be carried per vehicle plus the driver. Off-road driving can be rather bumpy and is often compared to roller-coaster rides. Advise your tour director accordingly if you do not wish to participate in the dune bashing. Ground transportation for the city tour and city transfers are by luxury air-conditioned motor coach. Dinner cruise by Arabian ‘dhow.'
Central America & other exotic destinations - mini vans
Traveling by bus is one of the best ways to get around in these locations. Depending on group size, you will travel by mini-van or motor coach. Both are comfortable and safe means of transportation with local expert drivers. All vehicles are air-conditioned.
What to do during your free time? For more details or current local events talk to your tour director or your local city guide. They are always the best source for free-time activities and offer great tips on restaurants or local hang-outs.