• $5,592
  • $500
  • Odysseys Unlimited
  • High
  • Land Only

This 15-day comprehensive small group tour of Germany, the old and the new, draws you into the allure of this classic land with a cruise on the legendary Rhine, vistas of the Black Forest and the Bavarian Alps, and exploration of culturally rich Munich and international Berlin.  After a full-day excursion through the Rhine River Valley, explore the romantic university town of Heidelberg; wind through the heart of the enchanted Black Forest; and continue on to Munich, stopping to visit fairytale Neuschwanstein Castle, inspiration for Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty castle.  In Munich see the Glockenspiel carillon and royal Maximilianstrasse avenue before touring infamous Dachau and Nuremberg.  Travel on to Dresden, with its extraordinary display of crown jewels and the world’s largest diamond; then Meissen’s Royal Porcelain Factory; and finally, Germany’s beating heart and capital of Berlin with its world-famous Brandenburg Gate and the Berlin Wall.  An optional 3-day/2-night Berlin extension is available.

Day 1

Depart U.S. for Frankfurt, Germany

Day 2

Arrive Frankfurt We arrive in Germany’s – and Europe’s – financial center today and transfer to our hotel. As guests’ arrival times may vary greatly, we have no group activities planned during the day. Early this evening we meet for a briefing about the journey ahead then enjoy a welcome dinner together.
Meals — Dinner

Day 3

Frankfurt/Rhine River Cruise One of the great rivers of Europe and Germany’s historic highway of commerce and industry, the Rhine holds a special place in German tradition. We encounter this fabled waterway on a full-day excursion – including a relaxing cruise – through the Rhine River Valley, land of castles and kings, legends and lore.
Meals — Breakfast and lunch

Day 4

Frankfurt/Heidelberg/Black Forest With its riverside setting, medieval castle ruins, and narrow, winding streets that were spared wartime bombing, Heidelberg stands as perhaps the quintessential German city. We discover this romantic university town on a morning tour featuring Old Town; the university (c. 1386); Carl Theodor Old Bridge spanning the Neckar River; Heidelberg Castle; and lively Market Square, where we have free time for lunch on our own. Then we depart for the Black Forest (Schwarzwald), Germany’s storied woodland whose pastoral beauty and natural spring waters have drawn visitors for centuries.
Meals — Breakfast and dinner

Day 5

Black Forest/Freiburg/Triberg We discover the Black Forest today, traveling first to Freiburg, where we see the 13th-century Gothic cathedral, one of Germany’s most beautiful; and the adjacent Augustinian cloister. Then we travel on to Triberg, birthplace of the cuckoo clock and where we visit the Schwarzwald-museum, a series of houses whose furnishings depict life here over the centuries. We return to our hotel for an evening at leisure, perhaps to explore this charming town as we wish. Dinner tonight is on our own.
Meals — Breakfast

Day 6

Black Forest/Bavaria Leaving the Black Forest, we travel along the shores of Lake Konstanz through scenic Bavaria, home to the breathtaking Bavarian Alps. Mid-afternoon we reach our hotel set amid the stunning Bavarian alpine scenery.
Meals — Breakfast and dinner

Day 7

Bavaria/Neuschwanstein Castle/Munich Today we encounter the fairy tale castle of our collective imagination: Neuschwanstein, Ludwig II’s 19th-century Romanesque Revival palace that was the inspiration for Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty castle, with its fanciful turrets and towers, gables and balconies. Following our visit to the hilltop castle, we enjoy lunch together. Then we continue on to Munich, capital of Bavaria.
Meals — Breakfast and lunch

Day 8

Munich A morning sightseeing tour of Germany’s most prosperous and highly livable city includes the Baroque Nymphenburg Palace, former summer home of Bavarian royalty; the Glockenspiel carillon in Marienplatz, Munich’s popular central square; and the royal avenue of Maximilianstrasse. Then the remainder of the day is free to explore as we wish. Tonight we dine together at a local restaurant.
Meals — Breakfast and dinner

Day 9

Munich/Dachau/Nuremberg We travel just 10 miles outside Munich today to Dachau, site of Germany’s first concentration camp and today a memorial to the 40,000-plus who perished there. After this somber encounter we continue on to Nuremberg, a historic city where Allied forces prosecuted Nazi leaders in military tribunals that became known as the Nuremberg Trials. Here we take a walking tour of this city known for its medieval architecture.
Meals — Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 10

Nuremberg/Dresden This morning we visit several sites associated with the Nuremberg Trials, including the Palace of Justice complex where the momentous trials took place. After our tour here and free time for lunch, we travel on to Dresden.
Meals — Breakfast and dinner

Day 11

Dresden Its historical center largely destroyed by Allied bombing during World War II, Dresden today is a rebuilt and reunified city. Among the attractions of the capital of Saxony seen on this morning’s tour: the beautiful and beloved Semper Opera House; and the historic Green Vault in Dresden Castle, the “jewel box” of Europe housing an astounding array of treasures, including the crown jewels and the world’s largest green diamond. The remainder of the day is at leisure to explore as we wish.
Meals — Breakfast

Day 12

Dresden/Meissen/Berlin Leaving Dresden, we stop in Meissen to visit the factory that produced the world’s first high quality porcelain outside of the Far East. Opened in 1710, Meissen’s Royal Porcelain Factory still creates the fine china that is on display in museums and homes around the world. We continue on to Berlin, where we enjoy dinner together.
Meals — Breakfast and dinner

Day 13

Berlin Germany’s capital, its largest city, cultural center, and beating heart, Berlin is both provincial and international, historic and up-to-the-minute, sophisticated and friendly. We get our first taste on this morning’s tour featuring the Brandenburg Gate, the triumphal arch now a symbol of reunification. We continue on to the Berlin Wall Memorial, the remaining section of the partition that brutally divided the city – and the nation – from 1961 to 1989. Now a historical monument and tribute to victims, the memorial traces the history of the wall and German reunification. Here, too, is Checkpoint Charlie, symbol of a once-divided nation. We then visit the Neues Museum, which features collections of Egyptian artifacts (including the famous bust of Queen Nefertiti). The remainder of the day is free for independent exploration in this non-stop metropolis. Lunch and dinner are on our own, and Berlin boasts a lively – and cosmopolitan – culinary scene.
Meals — Breakfast

Day 14

Berlin/Potsdam Today we visit nearby Potsdam, former capital of Prussia, site of the victorious Allies’ post-World War II conference, and home of Sanssouci, the former summer palace of Frederick the Great of Prussia. We tour the elaborate manse, considered the “German Versailles,” with its parks, lakes, and follies. Then we return to Berlin for an afternoon at leisure; tonight we gather for a farewell dinner at a local restaurant.
Meals — Breakfast and dinner

Day 15

Depart for the U.S. We transfer to the Berlin airport this morning for our return flights to the U.S.
Meals — Breakfast

Please note: This trip involves considerable walking up hills or stairs, and on uneven or cobblestone streets. You should be in good physical condition to enjoy this tour to its fullest.