Tour: ZD - 2013 (ZD) - 2013 / 2014

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Itinerary

DAY 1Arrive in Frankfurt, Germany

Time to rest or to start exploring the bustling metropolis on the River Main. At 6 pm, meet your Tour Director and traveling companions for a welcome dinner at your hotel. (Dinner)

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DAY 2Frankfurt–Cologne–Düsseldorf

A special treat at the very start of your journey through Germany is a romantic RHINE CRUISE along the most scenic section of the Rhine River, with castle-crested hills, terraced vineyards, pretty wine towns, and the Lorelei rock. Disembark and drive to Cologne to visit the awesome gothic CATHEDRAL. Its twin 515-foot towers, five naves, splendid stained-glass windows, and the shrine of the Three Holy Kings are eloquent testimony to the quality of medieval engineering and craftsmanship. Afterwards, Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite enjoy a beer in the Cölner Hofbräu Früh, one of Cologne’s famous breweries. Continue to charming Düsseldorf, the capital of North Rhine-Westphalia for your overnight stay. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Pay a visit to Cologne’s awesome gothic cathedral 
Cologne Cathedral

Cologne Cathedral


"When a resident of Cologne returns after even a short stay outside the city, it just isn’t home until they’ve seen the black towers of the “Dom” against the sky. Germany’s largest gothic cathedral can’t be described with the usual words – monumental, awe-inspiring, beautiful, and majestic. It’s more than that. It’s been known to perplex visitors about what makes this cathedral so visually overwhelming. Its height has something to do with it – 515 feet of sandstone blackened by time and exhaust fumes. Or maybe it’s the Dom’s location, the feeling that a massive 13th Century gothic church was dropped out of the sky into the center of modern Cologne, a stone’s throw from the central train station and the shops on Hohestrasse."
The beautiful Rhine Valley

A Short Wine Guide


"Historically, Germany’s wine has suffered with an “inferiority complex” fueled by the reputation of wine powerhouses France and Italy. And in modern times, they’ve tacked of “how to compete with a Bordeaux or a Chianti” by improving quality, while keep prices reasonable. Finally, German vintners are starting to reap the rewards. The world famous Riesling region, centered on the Rhine and its tributaries and in eastern Germany near Dresden, is the biggest success story to come out of Germany’s 13 wine growing regions. White grapes form 80 percent of the harvest, but reds are on the rise, as well as the general reputation of German wines."
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DAY 3Düsseldorf–Berlin

Ride the EUROCITY TRAIN to Berlin, capital of reunited Germany, where sightseeing with a Local Guide in the once-divided metropolis includes the elegant Ku’damm, the restored Reichstag, Charlottenburg Palace, a picture stop at monumental Brandenburg Gate and the Holocaust Memorial, and the 210-foot Victory Column in the vast Tiergarten Park. Visit the KAISER WILHELM MEMORIAL CHURCH with its bomb-damaged tower, drive along Unter den Linden Boulevard, and pass the State Opera House and Checkpoint Charlie. (Breakfast, Dinner)

The Reichstag building is a historical building in Berlin, Germany that was built in 1894 Berlin is the capital of Germany and also its largest city The Brandenburg Gate is a former city gate and a main symbol of Berlin The Brandenburg Gate is one of the most well-known landmarks of Berlin and Germany 
Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church

Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church


"During World War II, Americans soldiers in occupied Germany got a booklet called the “Pocket Guide to Germany” that explained the ins and outs of occupation. In 1944, it read: “Don’t forget that you’re ordered into Germany now partly because your fathers forgot so soon what the war was about last time.” The Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church in Berlin’s Charlottenburg district is the eternal reminder. It was an unremarkable late 19th Century church until the allies bombed it in 1943. After the war, Berliners protested plans to demolish it. Today, the ruins are a symbol of what Germany lost by letting itself be seduced by Nazism. They could have roped it off and slapped a plaque on it. Instead, they left it open, free to the city. You can walk through it, under it, look up at the shattered bell tower."
Checkpoint Charlie

Checkpoint Charlie


"It’s just a white shed and a stack of sandbags filled with concrete, a replica of Checkpoint Charlie. Visitors to this traffic island on Friedrichstrasse pose from two directions – west and east – because they’re standing on the old symbolic border of the two Berlins. Checkpoint Charlie was for diplomats, Allied military and foreign tourists wanting to get into East Berlin, and that’s the source of its mystique. Today’s Cold War buffs have to be content with photos by the 1960s-era replica shed, a browse through the private collections of the nearby Haus am Checkpoint Charlie – and maybe a visit to the Allied Museum in Berlin’s Zehlendorf district, where the original Checkpoint Charlie building is on display. The huge portrait photographs over Checkpoint Charlie of two soldiers – one American, one Soviet – symbolize the Big Brother military presence of Cold War Berlin."
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DAY 4At Leisure in Berlin

A full day at leisure gives you a chance to join one of our exciting optional excursions, like to nearby Potsdam. (Breakfast)

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DAY 5Berlin–Leipzig–Nuremberg

On your way south through what used to be the “other” Germany, visit Leipzig, an important center since the Middle Ages. Visit the THOMASKIRCHE, where J.S. Bach worked, and the Market Square with its fine renaissance buildings. Continue to Nuremberg, the town of children’s toys and gingerbread. Admire the impressive medieval ramparts and walk through the pedestrian area of the charming Old Town to St. Sebald Church, painstakingly reconstructed as a monument to peace from the rubble of near-total wartime destruction, and admire the Schöner Brunnen, a 14th-century fountain dedicated to the Holy Roman Empire. It is said that it brings good luck to spin the two brass rings. Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite Of course, you will also taste the traditional Nürnberger Bratwürste. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Nuremberg is a city located in the state of Bavaria, Germany 
Bach

Bach's Leipzig


"Johann Sebastian Bach was a lucky accident for Leipzig. In 1723, when the city sought a cantor for the Thomaskirche, the late gothic church in today’s Thomaskirchhof, Bach got the job only when the city’s first choice Georg Phillip Telemann refused. Their second choice turned out to be the best – and forever changed music history. "
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DAY 6Nuremberg–Rothenburg–Munich

Join the Romantic Road and arrive in medieval Rothenburg with its ramparts and towers, cobblestone lanes, and 16th-century houses. Hear how the town survived the Thirty Years War, and shop for Christmas ornaments, for which this pretty town is famous. Next is the Bavarian capital, Munich. Tonight, why not join an optional outing to the Hofbräuhaus? (Breakfast)

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Watch Tower along the Romantic Road

Watch Tower along the Romantic Road


"Roses and candlelight dinners weren’t top-of-mind when the German tourism experts invented the Romantic Road, a route through western Bavaria starting in baroque Würzburg in the north and ending in Füssen near the Austrian border. The name came from the German Romantics, who formed an early 19th century school of philosophy, literature and art that prized beauty and the emotions over the rationalist thinking of the Enlightenment. For the visitor to the Romantic Road, that means sitting back and simply enjoying the beauty of the dozen medieval and baroque towns along the route."
"Munich, Germany

"Munich, Germany's Secret Capital"


"Munich is the only German metropolis that seems to have everything – wealth, beauty, prominence, fame. Some even call it Germany’s “secret capital.” Unlike Berlin, which some dub “architecturally challenged,” Munich bursts with historical buildings reconstructed after the devastation of World War II. Its grand Residenz, the former home of Bavarian kings, dominates the city center, which also boasts the flamboyant, gilded Cuvillié Theater. Nearby, the neo-gothic Neues Rathaus gives a medieval touch to the Marienplatz, the heart of Munich. "
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DAY 7Munich–Oberammergau

Guided morning sightseeing includes the Olympic Stadium, 1,000-foot-high Television Tower, Nymphenburg Palace, MARIENPLATZ with the Old and New Town Halls, and the gothic Frauenkirche. In the late afternoon, drive to the romantic Passion Play town of Oberammergau, where you will stay for the next two nights. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Nymphenburg Palace in Munich was the summer residence of the rulers of Bavaria View Marienplatz in Munich, Germany 
Oberammergau

Oberammergau


"Promises to God are notoriously hard to keep. The townspeople of Oberammergau in the Bavarian Alps have not only kept their renaissance promise, they’ve turned it into euros and cents. Flashback to 1633. Oberammergau was a stop on the market road between Augsburg and Venice. When the plague hit, the town elders swore to heaven: Protect us and we’ll do a play about Jesus’ crucifixion every ten years. The first began in 1634. Today the village of Oberammergau lives because of theater. Half of the 5,400 residents break a leg in the Passionsspiel, performed in years ending in zero from May to October."
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DAY 8Oberammergau. Excursion to Neuschwanstein

Highlight today is a visit to King Ludwig’s magnificent NEUSCHWANSTEIN CASTLE, one of the most famous German castles and copied by Walt Disney at his theme parks. Follow your Local Guide through this fairytale castle on its craggy outcrop high above a sparkling lake. Choose from our optional excursions to make the most of your stay in this romantic area. (Breakfast)

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Neuschwanstein Castle

Neuschwanstein Castle


"As it rises from its alpine backdrop, Neuschwanstein Castle near Füssen has all the drama of a well-planned stage scene. And so it is. The late 19th century dream castle joins various architectural styles with the eccentric fancy of Ludwig II, Bavaria’s most peculiar sovereign. From afar he adored the anorexic Austrian Empress Elisabeth, he wrote about suicide in his diaries and he bankrolled the composer Richard Wagner. He also loved building castles. In the process, he nearly bankrupted his government. Today, he’s the equivalent of a pop star in Bavaria for giving Germany its most popular tourist attraction."
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DAY 9Oberammergau–Lindau–Black Forest

A leisurely drive along the panoramic German Alpine Road to the sunny northern shore of Lake Constance, Europe’s largest freshwater reservoir. Visit the charming island of Lindau, then continue north and visit the baroque CHURCH at Birnau. Enter the lush Black Forest and Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite enjoy a special welcome by the Drubba family at their hotel, Hofgut Sternen, and learn all about the cuckoo-clock, for which the area is famous. (Breakfast, Dinner)

The Black Forest in southwestern Germany 
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DAY 10Black Forest–Heidelberg–Frankfurt

This morning, drive deeper into the Black Forest, then stop for Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite a WOODCARVING DEMONSTRATION, followed by a delicious piece of Black Forest Cake. Arrive in Heidelberg, Germany’s oldest university town, of Student Prince fame. Time to stroll around in the Old Town, then ride the FUNICULAR up the hill and visit the red-walled CASTLE where the GREAT VAT, a 58,000-gallon 18th-century wine cask, attracts particular attention. Return to Frankfurt, where a special farewell dinner with wine awaits you at a local restaurant to say, “Auf Wiedersehen!” (Breakfast, Dinner)

The Black Forest in southwestern Germany 
Mark Twain

Mark Twains Heidelberg


"“One thinks Heidelberg by day – with its surroundings – is the last possibility of the beautiful; but when he sees Heidelberg by night, a fallen Milky Way, with that glittering railway constellation pinned to the border, he requires time to consider upon the verdict.” Mark Twain wrote this ode to Heidelberg in his humorous travel book, “A Tramp Abroad” (1880). During the three months that Twain spent in the city in 1878, many of his recorded experiences aren’t entirely dissimilar from activities that travelers and residents still enjoy today. He gazed out over the Nektar River; strolled across the Old Bridge; and watched university students dueling in a tavern."
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DAY 11Frankfurt

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)

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