This extensive vacation stretches through Central Europe from London to Rome, then along the Mediterranean to Spain and France to reach Paris. Begin with two overnights in London to explore at your own pace, then ferry across the English Channel and drive to Amsterdam. From Holland, you will cross Germany into Switzerland, admiring awe-inspiring Alpine scenery along the way. Your next focus will be Italy, a country rich in natural and artistic treasures—so much so that Italy has the highest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, some of which you will be visiting: the Basilica of St Francis in Assisi, the historical city centers of Rome, Florence, Verona, the Piazza del Duomo in Pisa, Vatican City, and Venice and its lagoon. Italy also means good food and wine, the “dolce vita,” fashion, and style. Just as interesting for arts, culture, food, fashion, style, glitz, and glam is France, and on this tour you will spend time on the French Riviera, in Avignon, and Carcassonne, then jump into Spain with its colorful main cities, lively Barcelona and monumental Madrid as well as historic Burgos. Return to France to visit Bordeaux, the Loire Valley, Orleans, and, last but not least, Paris, the Ville Lumière, where the tour ends.
Individual headsetsInside visits and special features:Shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description including admission charges where applicable.Sightseeing:Visits to Heidelberg, Lucerne, Lugano, Verona, Venice, Assisi, Pisa, Avignon, Carcassonne, Burgos, Bilbao, Bordeaux, Orleans
LONDON Novotel London West (F)AMSTERDAM AREA Holiday Inn Express Arena (ST) or Dorint Airport (F) at SchipholRHINELAND Leonardo Koln-Bonn Airport (F) or Avendi (F) at Bad Honnef or Mercure Köln West (ST)LUCERNE AREA Ibis (ST) at Kriens or Ibis Styles (ST)VENICE AREA Holiday Inn (ST) at Marghera or Poppi (ST) at MiraROME Villa Maria Regina (F) or Holiday Inn Express San Giovanni (ST)FLORENCE Italiana Hotels Florence (ST) or Meridiana (ST)FRENCH RIVIERA Ibis Styles Airport (ST) at Nice or Campanile Nice Airport (ST) or Ibis Styles (ST) at Menton CARCASSONNE Des 3 Couronnes (ST)BARCELONA Catalonia Sagrada Familia (ST)MADRID Abba Madrid (F) or Rafaelhoteles Ventas (F)BILBAO Novotel Exhibition Center (F)POITIERS Ibis Centre (ST)PARIS Ibis La Villette (ST)
Buffet breakfasts daily; 8 dinners, including a dinner at a local restaurant in Florence
NOTE:December 10 Departure – Christmas lunch in Barcelona and New Year’s in Paris
Transportation: Round-trip transportation between London and the Channel ports; on the Continent, private first-class air-conditioned motorcoach; cross-Channel ferry; canal transfer boat in Venice