• $4,895
  • $600
  • AHI

Explore grand, regal cities rich in culture and compelling history on this exceptional, 11-night journey through Poland, Germany and the Czech Republic. From beautifully conserved old towns to lovingly rebuilt historic centers, admire Central Europe’s old-world grandeur in Kraków, Warsaw, Berlin and Prague. You’ll also relish visits to colorful Poznań, Poland, and Dresden, Germany, filled with baroque gems. Special highlights include a private Chopin concert, an Elbe River cruise through the picturesque Saxon Alps and a Polish vodka tasting. Learn about significant historical events during educational lectures and guided visits to the Warsaw Uprising Museum and Berlin Wall memorial. In select cities, customize your itinerary. While in Kraków, visit Auschwitz, the former Nazi concentration camp or Nowa Huta, the former Soviet-designed, model Socialist community. In Prague, stroll through the magnificent castle or the atmospheric Jewish quarter. This small-group experience features deluxe, centrally located hotels, a high-speed train from Kraków to Warsaw and a generous meal plan with wine at dinner.

View details and reserve here: https://texas.ahitravel.com/destinations/1652A?schoolId=167

Itinerary:

Day 1 | Depart gateway city
AHI FlexAir passengers depart for Kraków, Poland. Please check your luggage from your home airport to your arrival city. Your claim checks should have the following airport code: KRK.

Day 2 | Kraków, Poland
Hotel Unicus Palace
D
Arrive at Kraków John Paul II International Airport. Proceed through immigration to the baggage claim area and retrieve your luggage. After completing customs, AHI FlexAir passengers traveling on flights that qualify for the group arrival transfer and Land Program passengers who have purchased seats on the group transfer should exit the baggage claim area and proceed to the Arrivals Hall, where an AHI Travel representative will meet you.

Transfer to the Hotel Unicus Palace in the heart of Kraków’s Old Town. Please note, if you arrive before check-in time, your room may not be immediately available.

Later, join your Travel Director for a brief stroll to familiarize yourself with the area around the hotel.

At this evening’s Welcome Reception and Dinner in the hotel, get better acquainted with your fellow travelers.

Day 3 | Kraków
Hotel Unicus Palace
B | L
Throughout your journey, each day begins with a delicious breakfast served at the hotel.

Enrichment: Historical Heritage of Kraków. Join a local expert who will enlighten you on the history of this enchanting city, the royal capital of Poland for more than five centuries.

Discovery: Highlights of Kraków. A UNESCO World Heritage site, Kraków’s old town is densely packed with magnificent buildings, from Gothic and Renaissance to baroque and art nouveau, which evoke its rich past. Begin atop Wawel Hill in the majestic castle complex overlooking a bend in the Vistula River. This important royal and religious seat of power flourished from the 14th to 16th centuries under the kings of the Jagiellonian dynasty, who rebuilt the palace in the Renaissance style. Step into the courtyard to admire the Italian-influenced, tiered arcades. Inside Wawel Cathedral, where Poland’s kings were crowned and buried, view the ornate royal sarcophagi. Then head to the vast Market Square and listen for the hourly trumpet call that rings out from the tallest tower of the Basilica of the Virgin Mary. Stroll past the 13th-century stalls of Cloth Hall, which served as a medieval shopping mall. Finally, visit Collegium Maius, the oldest building of Jagiellonian University, and imagine student Nicolaus Copernicus rushing across the courtyard to a lecture. (Moderate)

Sit down to a lunch of Polish specialties in the Old Town. Afterward, go inside the Basilica to see the breathtaking, 15th-century triptych altarpiece carved by Veit Stoss.

Free Time: Your afternoon and evening are at leisure. Perhaps visit the Kraków National Museum, relax in a café for an afternoon of coffee and people-watching, or stroll through Planty Park.

Day 4 | Kraków
Hotel Unicus Palace
B | L
Personalize Your Journey | Choose one of the following excursions.

Auschwitz. Although the Nazis tried concealing their worst atrocities at Poland’s first concentration camp, evidence remains among the site’s more than 40 red brick buildings. View footage of Poland during World War II, then pass through the gateway inscribed with the infamous words, “Work Makes Freedom.” Witness powerful exhibits and inmates’ stark living quarters. Continue to Birkenau, known as Auschwitz II. This 400-acre site once held 100,000 prisoners. Gather for lunch at a local venue. (Moderate)Important! If you are signing up for the Auschwitz excursion, please provide your full name as it appears on your passport when you complete the reservation form. This is required to obtain your ticket.
Nowa Huta. This Kraków suburb was designed as the ideal Communist community. Created by the Soviet Union after World War II in an attempt to reshape Polish society, this district was once a center of revolution and resistance. Explore the area, a 1950s-era community with concrete-block buildings. Learn more about this period during a visit to a Communist-style apartment and enjoy lunch at a milk bar, a traditional cafeteria. (Moderate)
Free Time: After returning to Kraków, make your own plans for dinner.

Day 5 | Warsaw
Hotel Bristol, Warsaw
B
Discovery: Warsaw. Journey through the countryside by high-speed train to the Polish capital. Though it was almost completely destroyed during World War II, the city has been transformed with wonderfully rebuilt historic architecture and contemporary gems. On a guided walk, take in the colorful, faithfully reconstructed buildings of Stare Miasto, the Old Town, named a UNESCO World Heritage site. Leveled during the Warsaw Uprising, the grand Royal Castle now reflects its former 14th-century glory as the regal residence of Poland’s kings. See the Jewish district, the Monument of the Warsaw Uprising and the Warsaw Ghetto Memorial, and then discover the Nowe Miasto, the New Town. (Moderate)

Free Time: Pick a nice spot for lunch on your own.

Rejoin the group this afternoon for a vodka tasting at the Polish Vodka Museum.

Check in to the Hotel Bristol, Warsaw.

Day 6 | Warsaw
Hotel Bristol, Warsaw
B | D
Discovery: Warsaw Uprising Museum. In this excellent museum, learn the tragic story of the Nazi occupation of Warsaw and the residents’ ensuing fight to liberate their city. View an absorbing series of inspirational and emotional presentations, photographs and exhibits about the brave Polish Home Army, and gain insight into the struggles of daily life in Warsaw as well as the major events of World War II. (Moderate)

Free Time: Spend time exploring and enjoying lunch on your own this afternoon.

This evening, listen to brilliant pieces composed by Polish-born Frédéric Chopin during a private piano concert at a charming venue in the heart of the Old Town. After the performance, gather for dinner at a nearby restaurant.

Day 7 | Poznań | Berlin, Germany
Hilton Berlin
B | L | D
After breakfast, travel by deluxe motor coach to Poznań.

Discovery: Poznań Walking Tour. Feast your eyes on delightful Poznań, where brightly painted shops line the storybook main square. This vibrant city is where Poland’s first two kings established their courts and the first Catholic diocese was founded. On a guided walk, discover its significant role in Polish history and admire landmarks such as the Italian Renaissance-style Town Hall and the Imperial Castle. (Moderate)

After a group lunch in Poznań, travel to Berlin.

Enrichment: A Tale of Two Cities: East Berlin and West Berlin. Split at the end of World War II, Berlin was reunited after the infamous Berlin Wall was torn down in 1989. While now unified, elements of the city’s past still linger. Delve into the lasting impact in its two former sectors.

Check in to the Hilton Berlin. You’ve arrived in one of Europe’s most exciting cities – free-spirited, progressive and layered with complex history. Freed from its divided past, Berlin has energetically revitalized itself with impressive contemporary architecture, an exuberant arts scene, hip cafés and pleasant parks.

Day 8 | Berlin
Hilton Berlin
B | L
Discovery: Panoramic Berlin and Berlin Wall Memorial. With a guide, see Berlin’s top sites, including the Brandenburg Gate, Pariser Platz, the Federal Chancellery, Gendarmenmarkt, the Reichstag and the stately Unter den Linden boulevard. Drive on Kurfürstendamm, the leafy boulevard lined with exclusive shops, restaurants and cafés. Take a guided walk at the Bernauerstrasse Wall Memorial and view the last section of the Berlin Wall preserved in place. Stop for lunch along your excursion route. (Mild)

Free Time: Spend the rest of the day at leisure or choose to join the Elective Activity.

Elective Activity: Potsdam. Visit Cecilienhof Palace, designed in the style of an English country manor for Crown Prince Wilhelm and completed in 1917. It also famously served as the setting for the Potsdam Conference, where President Harry S. Truman, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin met in the summer of 1945. Then stroll through the stunning, terraced Sanssouci gardens, planned by Frederick the Great in 1743 as part of his summer retreat, where he could live sans souci or “without cares.” (Moderate) Available at an additional cost.

Day 9 | Berlin
Hilton Berlin
B
Free Time: Create your own agenda for the day! While you explore, take a break at one of Berlin’s inviting biergartens and enjoy the laidback vibe, or stop to sample currywurst, falafels and other local favorites from the city’s numerous snack stalls.

Day 10 | Dresden
Bilderberg Bellevue Hotel Dresden
B | L
After breakfast, travel to Dresden.

Discovery: Dresden City and Culinary Tour. Take an engaging walk through Dresden’s splendid old town area as your guide provides fascinating insights about its history and architecture. Visit the Church of Our Lady, built in 1743 and ravaged by World War II bombings, now lovingly restored to its earlier baroque splendor. At stops along the way, taste wonderful Saxon culinary specialties that honor the region’s traditions. (Moderate)

Check into the Bilderberg Bellevue Hotel Dresden on the banks of the Elbe River.

Free Time: After getting settled at the hotel, spend the remainder of the day at leisure. Art lovers will enjoy the Old Master’s Gallery with impressive paintings and sculptures that span six centuries. Study the fine details of masterpieces by Rembrandt, Rubens, Vermeer and Italian luminaries Raphael, Titian and Botticelli.

Day 11 | Prague, Czech Republic
Cosmopolitan Hotel Prague
B
This morning, check out of the hotel and head south toward Prague.

Discovery: Elbe River Cruise. Along your route, discover the region known as the Saxon Alps during a cruise on the Elbe River. Nicknamed for its similarity to Switzerland, this picturesque area is dotted with forested river banks, green meadows, red-roofed houses and the towering Elbe Sandstone mountains. Marvel at these unusually shaped, craggy rock formations created by water erosion millions of years ago. (Mild)

Check in to the Cosmopolitan Hotel Prague.

Spread along both banks of the Vltava River, Prague is recognized as one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Its historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage site, abounds in stately architecture — a rich array of monuments, buildings, palaces, churches and bridges that reflect its evolution over eight centuries. Prague’s districts include Old Town (Stare Mesto), New Town (Nove Mesto), the Jewish Quarter (Josefov) and Lesser Town (Mala Strana).

Discovery: Old Town Prague. This afternoon, set out on a walking tour to discover the area’s Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and baroque buildings. See the Old Town Square, dominated by the spire-topped towers of the 14th-century Church of Our Lady before Tyn. Pause at the famous astronomical clock, which is more than 600 years old, to watch the wooden figures of the twelve Apostles appear on the hour. (Moderate)

Enrichment: Velvet Revolution. Learn about the Velvet Revolution, a pivotal event that led to the end of communism in Czechoslovakia and preceded the country’s split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Day 12 | Prague
Cosmopolitan Hotel Prague
B | D
Personalize Your Journey | Choose one of the following excursions.

Prague Castle. This sprawling castle, one of the largest ancient castle complexes in the world, has been the seat of Czech rulers since the ninth century. See the Castle Square, the Chapel of the Holy Cross, the Prague Castle Picture Gallery and the old Royal Palace. Step inside St. Vitus Cathedral, a Gothic landmark built in 1344 by Czech King Charles IV, and admire the exquisite St. Wenceslaus Chapel, decorated with gilded panels inset with Bohemian gems. Stroll charming Golden Lane, lined with colorful, tiny 16th-century homes once occupied by the castle’s guards, goldsmiths and servants. (Active)
Prague’s Historic Jewish Quarter. In Josefov, the former Jewish quarter, explore the original network of narrow streets and see the baroque Old New Synagogue, Europe’s oldest active synagogue, founded in 1270. Visit the Prague National Jewish Museum, comprised of four synagogues, a ceremonial hall and the Old Jewish Cemetery. Now a rich repository of Jewish history and artifacts, the museum endured tumultuous periods under Nazi and Communist rule. Walk among the timeworn and jumbled tombstones of the Old Jewish Cemetery, one of the oldest surviving Jewish cemeteries in the world. More than 12,000 tombstones are wedged inside its boundaries. (Moderate)
Free Time: Enjoy the remainder of the afternoon exploring in the city. Take a walk along the acclaimed Charles Bridge, finished in 1400 and lined with 30 statues, commemorating saints and other religious figures.

Conclude your wonderful Imperial Journey with a Farewell Reception and Dinner tonight.

Day 13 | Depart for gateway city
B
After breakfast, AHI FlexAir passengers traveling on flights that qualify for a group transfer and Land Program passengers who have purchased seats on the group transfer depart for Václav Havel Airport Prague for your return flights home. Your Travel Director will provide the details.


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