Day 1 Fri. USA / Paris
International flights to Paris, France
Day 2 Sat. Paris – Arrival. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Night-time transfer to the Montmartre neighborhood. Funicular ride (included). Welcome to Paris! On arrival at the airport, we will be waiting to transfer you to the hotel. Our guide will be ready at the hotel and will give an overview of the tour. At the end of the evening, we provide transfer to the Montmartre district. This neighborhood is known for its painters, artists, and its cabarets- Sit down to dinner and enjoy a magical night. You can choose between Indian, Chinese, French and American cuisines. We will ascend by funicular to the hill and admire the spectacular view of Paris from the top. Return to hotel.
Day 3 Sun. Paris. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: City tour in Paris. Boat ride along the Seine. Climb to the second floor of the Eiffel Tower. Evening transfer. A scenic guided tour to discover the history, main boulevards and the breath-taking monuments of Paris. We end the visit at the Eiffel Tower area. You will have the opportunity to climb up to the second floor of this remarkable metal monument. End your visit with a boat cruise along the River Seine, which divides the north of Paris from the south. Enjoy a free afternoon to explore as you choose. At sunset enjoy dinner in “Quartier Latin”, a very picturesque area of the historic center where a wide variety of international cuisines await you. Return to hotel. (B)
Day 4 Mon. Paris. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Free time in the City of Light. We go to the center of Paris, to the area of the Louvre Museum. Free time. If you wish we can accompany you to Benlux, one of the most complete and best-known perfumeries in Paris. Rest of the day free. (B)
Day 5 Tue. Paris – Noyers – Beaune – Lyon. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Vineyards in Beaune and Bourgogne region. We travel to the center of France to the Bourgogne region, famous for its wines. A stop in NOYERS, a small mediaeval town classified amongst the prettiest places in France. After this we will visit BEAUNE in the center of the Bourgogne region where its streets full of flowers, its hospice and its wine museum can be reminders of your trip. Time for lunch. LYON – Arrival mid-afternoon -, the capital of Roman Gallia on the banks of the Rhône, its historic center has been declared a World Heritage site. Free time. (B)
Day 6 Wed. Lyon – Geneva – Vevey – Lake Leman – Castle Chillon – Gstaad. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Geneva, Vineyards Landscapes, Cruise on Lake Leman. Entrance to Chillon Castle. We have a beautiful stage. We travel to Switzerland. GENEVA, arrival. City located by the Lake Leman which hosts the European headquarters of the United Nations. You can stroll through the old city or know any of its museums. At noon we travel outlining Lake Leman. Among magnificent landscapes of vineyards (declared World Heritage area) we arrive at VEVEY, small and elegant city by the lake. Time to walk around and lunch. We include a small cruise on the Lake Leman (boat line) that allows us to enjoy the lake (crossing Montreux). Arrival at Chillon Castle, fantastic medieval castle built in the lake (entry cost included). Then by small roads between bucolic landscapes of mountains and picturesque villages made of wood arrive to GSTAAD, nice little town between landscapes. Accommodation in Gstaad – Saanenland area. (B)
Day 7 Thu. Gstaad – Grindelwald – Meiringen – Chiasso. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Mountain scenery, Cable car in Grindelwald and walk along a path in the Alps. Lunch included. Entrance to Aareschlucht Gorge. Today´s journey has fascinating mountain scenery. We passed Interlaken and we outline its beautiful lake. Arrival to GRINDELWALD where we will have time for a coffee before taking the cable car (ticket included) up to Grindelwald First. We will walk along the path (30 minutes) in which we shall be able to take the ¨footbridge over the empty¨ among the fantastic scenery enjoying glaciers around us. Lunch included (vegetarian option available). After that we continue to MERINGEN and the spectacular AARESSCHLUCHT Gorge (entrance included). Then we enter the region of Switzerland where the official language is Italian. Accommodation in CHIASSO, a Swiss city on the Italian border. (BL)
Day 8 Fri. Chiasso – Lugano – Burglen – Altdorf – Lucerne – Zurich. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Beautiful landscapes with mountains and lakes. Knowing Lugano and Lucerne. Visit the village that was made famous through William Tell. We will know LUGANO, the cosmopolitan capital of the Italian Switzerland with its beautiful lake. Time to stroll. We continue and on the highway, we cross St. Gotthard Pass. We stop in BURGLEN, the tiny village where William Tell was born, we shall see the chapel of the XVI century with paintings illustrating his life. If you want, you can also visit the museum of William Tell. In the neighboring city of ALTDORF we can also find traces of his history. Continue to LUCERNE, free time to explore this beautiful city by the lake that bears its name. Departure to the heart of Zurich to enjoy an evening at the city´s most popular restaurants (Indian, Oriental, Middle Eastern, Swiss, etc.). (B)
Day 9 Sat. Zurich – Bern – Meiringen – Furkapass – Milan. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Route crosses marvelous and breathtaking landscapes. Visit to the Ice Cave. Amongst hills we travel to BERN, the capital of the confederation and time for a stroll. After this, we will cross the Alps on a stage of great scenic interest. We will follow beautiful lakes to MERINGEN, where the novelist wished Sherlock Holmes to die. In Meringen we will stop and have lunch. We then cross one of the most spectacular mountain passes in Switzerland, the Furkapass, with eternal snows and glaciers. We will stop at the ICE CAVE and at the viewpoint over the Rhone Glacier (until early June and after the beginning of October, the mountain pass may be closed due to snow. In this case the alternative visit will be to the AARESCHLUCHT gorges in Meiringen). Arrival in MILAN at the end of the afternoon. There will be time to dine at the Porta Venecia (Port of Venice) where an outstanding variety of restaurants can be found to delight your palate. From restaurants serving Swiss and Italian food, to French, Chinese and international food. Transfer to hotel. (B)
Day 10 Sun. Milan – Pisa – Rome. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Center of Milano. Leaning Tower of Pisa. Time in MILAN in which we can see its great cathedral and the galleries in the center. Then we continue towards PISA. On a little tourist train we will travel to the Piazza Dei Miracoli (Square of Miracles), where there will be time to admire one of the most alluring and beautiful art complexes in Italy, including the well-known Leaning Tower of Pisa. Then, we continue to Rome, arriving at the end of the afternoon. (B)
Day 11 Mon. Rome. TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: City tour of Rome. Roman Coliseum (admission price included) and visit to the Vatican City. In the morning, we have a scenic tour of the city, which will be a great introduction to “The Eternal city”. We visit the tiny state of the Vatican. The Vatican City is a principal center of Christianity in the world. You will be able to visit St. Peter’s Basilica. And we have also included admission to the Roman Coliseum, the principal symbol of Rome. This impressive construction dates back 2,000 years and will transport us in time so that we can learn about ancient society in the Roman Empire. In the evening we provide transport to the Via Cavour area, were you will find restaurants serving Italian, Indian, Chinese and international food. Return to hotel. (B)
Day 12 Tue. Rome – Madrid.
TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Flight Rome – Madrid. Evening transfer to the Gran Via District.
After breakfast a transfer takes you to the airport to flight at around 11 am to Madrid. Upon arrival we shall be waiting to transfer you to your hotel. Towards the end of the day, a vibrant district where you can dine at your preferred restaurant: Indian, Chinese, Spanish and Middle Eastern are some of the options. (B)
Day 13 Wed. Madrid.
TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Madrid city tour. Visit to the Plaza de Toros de las Ventas bullring. Stroll through the Retiro Park. This morning, experience the city on a guided tour, which showcases the city’s vibrant centre, the beautiful Plaza Mayor (Main Square), its broad and magnificent avenues and its many fountains. Our tour includes a visit to see inside the Plaza de Toros de las Ventas, a fine-looking building. Here we learn about the tradition of “corridas” in the Bullfighting Museum. Also the day includes a walking tour of the beautiful Retiro Park, enhanced by the lake and Crystal Palace. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon. If you wish, there is an optional visit to the ROYAL PALACE. At sunset we provide transfer to the Plaza de Oriente in the historic center of Madrid, opposite the Royal Palace. In this area there are many restaurants serving different exquisite cuisines (Indian, Middle Eastern, Muslim, Spanish, International). Return to hotel. (B)
Day 14 Thu. Madrid – Zaragoza – Poblet – Montserrat – Barcelona.
TODAY´S HIGHLIGHTS: Basílica del Pilar, visit to medieval monastery. Ride on a rack train. ¡
We depart early in the morning from Madrid. Heading towards Aragón, we pause our journey in ZARAGOZA. Our guide will join the group to Basílica del Pilar. We visit this impressive sanctuary. Directly afterwards, the group will have free time in the city center. Later, we make our way to Cataluña to the Monastery of Poblet, surrounded by walls in a beautiful setting, this is one of the best preserved medieval monasteries in the world (entrance and guided tour included). We then go on to the Monastery of Montserrat where we include a ride on the rack train for the fantastic views this gives. Continuation to BARCELONA, arrival in the late afternoon.
Important note: in the winter months, from November to March (included), due to the shorter days, the Monastery of Poblet will not be visited (so that we can reach Montserrat in the daylight).
Day 15 Fri. Barcelona.
TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS: Barcelona city tour. “Spanish Village” visit and evening transfer to Las Ramblas district.
Today we will get to know Barcelona, an impressive city right on the Mediterranean Sea. Our visit includes an informative city tour with a local expert (note: If the group has fewer than fifteen people, explanations can be given by our guide.) We also visit the city’s historic central area with its Gothic neighborhood dating back to the Middle Ages. We will visit the area where the Olympic Games took place. It will be possible to see and photograph La Sagrada Familia basilica; the masterpiece designed by the architect Gaudí. Subsequently, we include the entry ticket to “Poble Espanyol” (meaning “Spanish Village”). This open air architectural museum is situated in one of the most emblematic areas of Barcelona. Be delighted by the best Spanish craftsmanship and discover the architectural styles, traditions and folklore of the different communities in Spain. Free time to explore the city on your own. In the evening we provide transfer to Las Ramblas and Plaza Catalunya area, where you can select from a great variety of restaurants (including Indian, Chinese, Halal, International and regional Spanish cuisine). Return to hotel.