Highlights of Central Europe
|Resort:||Highlights of Central Europe|
Travel through the Czech Republic, Austria and Hungary and experience the incredible highlights of Central Europe. From the sleekness of Vienna, and from the architectural triumphs of Prague to the contrasting twin cities of Budapest, see how history, folklore and tradition are threaded through the fabric of modern life. Visit centuries-old castles, be spoilt by greenery in urban jungles, fall in love with Bohemian fairytale towns, marvel at the artistic talents of European masters and sip wine splashed with romance in an atmospheric underground cellar.
Day 1 Prague
Welcome to Prague, the City of a Hundred Spires and the capital of the Czech Republic. Meet your team at 6 pm then enjoy a welcome dinner together. Afterwards, feel free to head for a walk through the city’s storied streets, culminating with a drink at one of the many bars. Your leader will be able to provide good suggestions. The nightlife here is legendary: Europeans fly in just for the weekend so if you’re partial to a boogie, why not linger a little and check it out.
Day 2 Prague
Head to Prague Castle this morning and spend some time exploring the St Vitus Cathedral and the colourful Golden Lane. The rest of the day is free to do as you wish. A bike tour through the city is a great way to see a lot of the city’s sights or, if you can make some time, you could take day trip to the Bohemia region and see Kutna Hora and Sedlec Ossuary (the Bone Church). In the evening, maybe grab dinner with your new travel buds or otherwise hit the town solo. A visit to one of the city’s dedicated absinthe bars is always a good shout, and Czech beer certainly needs no introduction, just go easy y’know.
Day 3 Cesky Krumlov
Depart Prague today and travel by bus to the southern Bohemian town of Cesky Krumlov (approximately 4 hours). This picturesque medieval town dates back to the 13th century and is like something out of a fairytale. Cesky Krumlov (pronounced ‘Che-skee Krum-lov’) means ‘crooked meadow’, which is befitting of a town that’s nestled in a sharp bend of the Vltava River. Head out on an included cycling trip in the afternoon, across rolling hills and through tiny hamlets (approximate 2-2.5 hours). If you have time, explore the city’s castle and its fabulous masquerade hall, or climb the tower for aerial views of the town.
Day 4 Cesky Krumlov
Today take a guided walking tour of the town which includes commentary of the mysteries that lie behind every shopfront and house on the crooked little streets. Learn about towns brewing tradition that has existed in here for hundreds of years. For those seeking some more culture, and if there’s time, a visit the Egon Schiele Art Centrum is well worth it. Here you can browse the gallery that’s dedicated to that Austrian painter. If you are an adventurous spirit, jump in to a canoe and discover the town from a perspective of Vltava River.
Day 5 Vienna
Depart Cesky Krumlov by minivan this morning and cross the border into Austria, continuing to the cosmopolitan city of Vienna (approximately 3.5 hours). Join your leader for a walk through the city’s compact centre (approximately 2 hours). Stop at the gothic-style St Stephens Cathedral, wander past the grand neo-classical Graben and onwards to the Hofburg Palace. Finish your orientation of the city at the State Opera House, one of the world’s most important opera houses and the heart of classical Viennese culture. Art lovers have a vast choice of museums, from the Albertina to those located in the Museum Quarter. In the evening, perhaps head out for some Viennese cuisine.
Day 6 Vienna
You have the whole of today to explore Vienna and its surrounds. You might like to head out to Schoenbrunn for a guided audio tour of the summer palace, designed by Empress Maria Theresa. The Gloriette Monument has incredible views of Vienna and the palace gardens are free to all visitors, although there is a charge for entrance and tours of the palace. Vienna is a beautiful city, so try to capture its essence as best you can while you’re here. Perhaps take a spin on the famous old Prater Ferris Wheel or practice your canter at the Spanish Riding School.
Day 7 Budapest
Journey across the border into Hungary by train, which should take around three hours to get to Budapest. Since the collapse of Communism, Budapest has experienced something of a renaissance. The grand architecture and boulevards evoke a time gone by, while glamorous stores and glitzy restaurants make this one of the truly great cities of Europe. One unmissable activity is a soak in Budapest’s hot thermal baths. The pools vary in temperature, and some even feature whirlpools or seats where you can enjoy a game of chess. In the late afternoon let your leader take you for tasty food trail walk and enjoy an included drink at the end of it. Evening is free to enjoy as you please.
Day 8 Budapest
Today is free for you to enjoy everything Budapest has to offer. It’s the spa capital of the world so if you want to do nothing more than soak all day, you won’t be judged here. Otherwise, the architecture around the city is simply unbelievable and a stroll past the Danube Palace, Parliament and many churches along the river is well worth it. In the evening, grab your group for a farewell dinner, and after see if you can catch a show at one of the many theatres and concert halls.
Day 9 Budapest
Your adventure comes to an end today. There are no more activities planned and you’re able to depart the accommodation at any time. As there’s not much time in Budapest, it’s recommended that you stay an extra few nights so you can truly experience this beautiful city. If you need helping booking additional accommodation, our reservations team can help (subject to availability).