Harmony Of Central Europe

Harmony of Central Europe (Summer 2019)

Duration: 13 days Visiting: Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
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Take a journey into the past, with our show case of the grandest and most opulent cities of old Europe. From Prague to Budapest, marvel at the spirit of former empires and regal grandeur. We’ll show you destinations with histories dating back hundreds of years and iconic cities that have seen destruction, only to resiliently build themselves back up again to their former glories. Europe’s Bohemian capitals delight with classical music, exquisite palaces and cathedrals, and rich heritage. Walk in the footsteps of six-year-old Mozart at an after-hours visit to the baroque Schönbrunn Palace, indulge with dinner at one of Vienna’s amazing Michelin-starred restaurants, and enjoy a private sparkling wine cruise on the glittering River Danube. Along the way, you’ll witness a private recital of Chopin's classic works, taste fine wines and stay in stately hotels. Step into a world of greatness, as you uncover some of Europe’s most revered capitals.

  1. Day 1

    Welcome to Prague.

    Your complimentary, private transfer takes you to your local departure airport. On arrival at Prague's Václav Havel Airport, you will be met and transferred to your luxury hotel. At 18:00 join your Travelling Concierge and fellow travellers for drinks, followed by a Welcome Dinner at Bastion Restaurant, famous for its world-class views, cuisine and service.

  2. Day 2

    The City of a Hundred Spires.

    Join a Local Expert in the atmospheric courtyards of Prague Castle. Visit St. Vitus Cathedral, bathed in a lustrous patina of stained glass, before strolling on to the Astronomical Clock in the Old Town Square. In the afternoon, there is an option to join an included visit to Prague’s Jewish Quarter.

  3. Day 3 - Relaxed Start

    Prague to Český Krumlov.

    A scenic drive through Bohemia brings you to Český Krumlov. Walk through the tangled cobblestone streets and meet your Local Expert to visit the famous castle, one of the most important historic sites in Central Europe. Spend the rest of the afternoon at your leisure, perhaps heading back to your hotel for an indulgent treat at the wellness spa?

  4. Day 4

    Melk Abbey and the Imperial Capital of Vienna.

    Travel over the Austrian border, along the Danube past castle ruins, to Melk, for a guided walk of its famous abbey. Continue through the Wachau Valley, where the Danube meanders below forested cliffs and rolling vineyards. Arrive in Vienna, where the doors of the magnificent Schönbrunn Palace open to you for a VIP after-hours exclusive visit.

    Chairman's Collection

    If you are travelling on a Chairman's Collection departure, you will be privileged to a private reception with Princess Anita von Hohenberg, a descendant of the famous Habsburgs, at Artstetten Castle. This incredible experience will replace visiting Melk Abbey.

  5. Day 5 - Relaxed Start

    Your Choice of Vienna, and a Classical Concert.

    Experience Vienna Your Way with a choice of how you embrace this stately city. Learn about Vienna's regal history as you visit the Imperial Treasury of Vienna with a Local Expert, home to two imperial crowns, the Burgundian treasure and the treasure of the Order of the Golden Fleece. Alternatively you may choose to attend a coffee masterclass and try your hand at making the perfect Viennese coffee. Later, enjoy a highlight evening of sparkling wine and front-row seats at a Mozart and Strauss concert, followed by dinner at Le Ciel, one of Vienna’s amazing Michelin-starred restaurants.

  6. Day 6 - Relaxed Start

    Bratislava and Budapest, Grand Dames on the Danube.

    Cross the border to reach the Slovakian capital of Bratislava. Explore the city, dominated by its imposing 9th century castle, with your Local Expert. Enjoy free time to take a leisurely walk through the Old Town to the Maximillian Fountain, before continuing to Hungary and the grand metropolis of Budapest. In the evening, dine at elegant Gundel, Hungary's most renowned restaurant, and sample local dishes and wine with a backdrop of traditional folk music.

  7. Day 7 - Relaxed Start

    The Jewel Box of Budapest and the Danube.

    Cross the Danube to Gellért Hill for astounding panoramic views over the city, presided over by the Liberty Statue. Continue through the medieval Castle District to visit the Fisherman's Bastion and Matthias Church. Return to Pest to wander along elegant boulevards with your Local Expert and see the Hungarian State Opera House, one of the most beautiful neo-Renaissance buildings in Europe. At the First Strudel House of Pest, admire how dough-stretching artisans work paper-thin crusts into delicious pastries and sample the local specialty. Your evening is at leisure.

  8. Day 8 - Relaxed Start

    Szentendre.

    In the morning, travel past the Roman remains of Aquincum to storybook Szentendre. Spend time exploring this riverside village with enchanting, brightly coloured houses, quaint churches, art galleries, and lovely squares. Return to Budapest and enjoy the afternoon at your leisure. Perhaps stroll along the majestic River Danube or browse the Central Market Hall for traditional crafts and fare? In the evening, step onboard a private cruise for a voyage along the Danube complete with sparkling wine.

  9. Day 9

    Through the Low Tatra to Kraków.

    Enjoy a gentle drive into Slovakia, through the small villages of the Low Tatra, characterised by austere wooden churches and traditional folk houses. Continue past the Oravský Hrad Castle to Kraków, a city full of architectural wonder and legend. Enjoy the evening at your leisure, perhaps heading out for a traditional hunter’s stew? Your Travelling Concierge knows the best restaurants and can assist you with reservations.

  10. Day 10

    Exploring Kraków.

    Join your Local Expert and cross the former Jewish Quarter to see locations used in the film ‘Schindler's List.' You'll then ascend Wawel Hill to visit the cathedral, the final resting place of the Kings of Poland. In the evening, you’re invited to choose between a selection of local restaurants and authentic menus for Your Choice Evening.

  11. Day 11

    Auschwitz, The Black Madonna and Warsaw.

    There will be time to pay your respects at the Auschwitz memorial. Walk beneath the infamous gateway to the museums housed in the former prison blocks. Your journey continues north to the Monastery of Jasna Góra in Częstochowa, famous for its Black Madonna, said to have been painted by St. Luke. Lunch today is a carefully prepared, packed lunch ready for you to enjoy at your convenience. Continue across the plains to Warsaw with its jumble of restored Gothic and communist architecture, tumultuous history and vibrant cafe culture. On arrival, your Travelling Concierge will check you into your luxury hotel, situated on the famous Royal Route. With the evening at leisure, perhaps enjoy a candle-lit dinner at your hotel or explore the nearby Old Town Market?

  12. Day 12

    Chopin and the Proud Polish Capital of Warsaw.

    Join your Local Expert for an in-depth look at Warsaw. Visit the Chopin Monument and the Memorial of the Heroes of the Warsaw Ghetto. Explore the Old Town, a miracle of reconstruction, conservation and home to the Royal Castle. The afternoon is at your leisure. Perhaps head back to your hotel for afternoon tea or treat yourself to a massage at the spa? In the evening, witness an exclusive, private Chopin recital performed by a renowned pianist, followed by a finale Celebration Dinner. Raise a glass of local wine, as you toast to new memories and friendships, and savour traditional dishes.

  13. Day 13

    Depart Warsaw.

    After breakfast, bid farewell to your travel companions and transfer to Warsaw airport for your onward journey. On arrival at your home airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your private transfer home.

Highlights

 

VIP EXPERIENCES

  • Vienna: Indulge your senses during a special VIP after-hours visit to the magnificent Schönbrunn Palace. With a Local Expert, stand beneath frescoed ceilings, crystal chandeliers and gilded Rococo frames where Mozart performed as a six-year-old prodigy.

JOURNEY HIGHLIGHTS

  • Prague: Visit Prague Castle and St. Vitus’ Cathedral with a Local Expert.
  • Prague: In Old Town Square see the Astronomical Clock that delights onlookers every hour.
  • Prague: There is the option to wander the Jewish Quarter with your Travelling Concierge, should you wish to continue exploring in the afternoon.
  • Český Krumlov: Meet a Local Expert and visit one of the most historic sites of Central Europe, Český Krumlov Castle.
  • Český Krumlov: Your Travelling Concierge will lead you on an orientation of the city.
  • Melk: Enjoy a guided walk through the baroque opulence of the monastery.
  • Vienna: Become familiar with this historic city during an orientation led by your Travelling Concierge.
  • Vienna: Experience Vienna Your Way, as how you embrace this stately city is your choice. You may want to learn about its regal history from a Local Expert as you visit the Imperial Treasury of Vienna, home to two imperial crowns, the Burgundian treasure and the treasure of the Order of the Golden Fleece. Alternatively you can attend a coffee masterclass and try your hand at making the perfect Viennese coffee.
  • Vienna: Experience an evening with sparkling wine and front row seats at a Mozart and Strauss concert.
  • Bratislava: Explore the city with your Local Expert and see the 9th century castle.
  • Budapest: With a Local Expert, see Matthias Church and gaze out over the Danube to the Hungarian Parliament Building from the Fisherman’s Bastion.
  • Budapest: Atop Gellért Hill see the citadel and the colossus Liberty Statue presiding over the city.
  • Budapest: During sightseeing with your Local Expert, you will be chauffeured along elegant boulevards to see the Hungarian State Opera House, one of the most beautiful neo-Renaissance buildings in Europe.
  • Budapest: Step onboard a private cruise for an unforgettable voyage along the Danube. Enjoy sparkling wine and overlook the city’s grandest buildings lit up at night.
  • Szentendre: Visit this storybook town to admire its brightly-coloured houses, quaint churches and lovely squares.
  • Slovakia: See the Oravský Hrad Castle en route to Kraków.
  • Kraków: During sightseeing led by your Local Expert, see locations used in the film ‘Schindler’s List.’
  • Kraków: Visit the cathedral atop Wawel Hill, see the castle and look for the iconic dragon, accompanied by your Local Expert.
  • Kraków: Visit the 14th century St. Mary’s Basilica, the most important church in the city.
  • Auschwitz: Pay your respects at the Auschwitz memorial and walk beneath the infamous gateway to the museums housed in the former prison blocks.
  • Częstochowa: View the Black Madonna at the Monastery of Jasna Góra.
  • Warsaw: Visit the Chopin Monument and Memorial of the Heroes of the Warsaw Ghetto, as you explore with your Local Expert.
  • Warsaw: Begin your evening in style as you experience an exclusive, private Chopin recital.

EXCEPTIONAL DINING

  • Prague: Enjoy beautiful views of this historic city as you sit down to your Welcome Dinner at Bastion Restaurant, known for it's delectable cuisine and excellent service.
  • Český Krumlov: Enjoy a night of dinner and wine in a cosy atmosphere at a local restaurant.
  • Wachau Valley: Stop to taste the refreshing wines made from the local Grüner Veltliner and Riesling grapes.
  • Vienna: You will be treated to an incredible meal, accompanied with wine, at Le Ciel, one of Vienna’s amazing Michelin-starred restaurants.
  • Budapest: Dine on traditional Hungarian delicacies at elegant Gundel, one of Budapest’s most renowned restaurants for over a hundred years. In elegant surroundings, savour hearty, Hungarian delicacies accompanied with specially-selected wines as you listen to the pleasant melodies of a string ensemble.
  • Budapest: Savour a selection of Hungarian delicacies at the First Strudel House in Pest, with dough stretching artisans turning out paper thin pastries for dessert.
  • Kraków: Choose between a selection of local restaurants and authentic menus for Your Choice Evening.
  • Poland: Delight in the convenience of a delicious homemade picnic lunch, of lovingly-created, local treats, ready for you to enjoy at your leisure.
  • Warsaw: Celebrate the culmination of your journey with a fine selection of local dishes and wine at a local restaurant.
  • Dining Summary: 12 Breakfasts (B), 1 Lunch (L), 1 Afternoon Tea (AT) and 7 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

LUXURY HOTELS

  • Prague: The luxurious Le Palais Art Hotel in Prague boasts beautifully designed rooms combining first-rate design, top-quality materials and state-of-the-art features for a harmonious stay.
  • Warsaw: Situated in the heart of Warsaw, the Hotel Bristol enchants with majestic neo-renaissance facade and romantic interiors, filled with art deco elegance. The exquisite guest rooms reflect an engaging mix of comfort and discreet elegance defined by subtle soothing colours, state-of-the-art technology, majestic high ceilings and charming views.

INCLUSIVE LUXURY GOLD SERVICES

  • You will be escorted by one of our fine Travelling Concierges, handpicked to serve as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Luxury Gold's air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom, onboard restroom and and complimentary bottled water for you to enjoy while travelling.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary, available on departures with 15 or more guests.
  • At every hotel, you'll be treated to seamless baggage handling, with prompt delivery inside your room.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travelling Concierge will enchant you with a Luxury Gold Flourish, which is a local speciality representing the destination.
  • Complimentary, private airport transfers are included on start and end dates and when additional accommodation has been booked through Luxury Gold. Transfers to train stations or alternate hotels, in the same start or end city of the itinerary, may be requested but are not guaranteed.

Accommodation

 

Le Palais Art Hotel Prague

Prague (Heritage) - Czech Republic

The luxurious Le Palais Art Hotel in Prague boasts beautifully designed rooms combining first-rate design, top-quality materials, warm colours and state-of-the-art equipment to form a harmonious stay.

Hotel Růže, Český Krumlov.

Český Krumlov (Historic) - Czech Republic

The 5-star Hotel Růže is everything you expect in Český Krumlov - centrally located, historic and grand, beautifully restored and renovated with period furnishings and decor.

Grand Hotel Wien

Vienna (Heritage) - Austria

Budapest Chain Bridge

Budapest (Traditional) - Hungary

Sheraton Grand Kraków

Kraków (Traditional) - Poland

Hotel Bristol

Warsaw (Heritage) - Poland

Situated in the heart of Warsaw, the Hotel Bristol enchants with majestic neo-renaissance facade and romantic interiors, filled with art deco elegance. The exquisite guest rooms reflect an engaging mix of comfort and discreet elegance defined by subtle soothing colours, state-of-the-art technology, majestic high ceilings, and charming views.

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.4 out of 5 based on
1026 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 22 October, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: The old towns and stops were well chosen.

    Service: The car service to and from the home airport Excellent tour director Tim Pendlebury and coach driver Gabor

  • 21 October, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: Wonderful selection of cities. Nice balance of tours/structured time and free time to explore on our own. The trip gave us a good overall "taste" of the cities we visited.

    Service: Customer Service reps were responsive to my inquiries

  • 21 October, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Itinerary was very interesting and was quite balanced -- sites and arts. Would have been better if we had 3 night per city visited. Guests would be more rested during the vacation.

    Service: A great vacation. We didn't expect Central Europe to be that interesting - but it truly was ! Thanks to our TD Tim who was a real professional. He knows these parts quite well. Our driver, Gabor, was also another plus factor of this trip. The sites that were covered were great! We would have rated this whole trip as a five if not for that overnight stay at Hotel Ruse which we both think was not worth of the rating it has. It would have been better if we traveled longer on the coach than to have stayed in that hotel. All the other accommodations were great. Three night stays per city would have been better too. It might cost a bit more but - its a vacation after all !

  • 07 October, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Saw a lot. Learned a lot. Great tour.

    Service: Well planned. Great tour leader. Fabulous bus driver. And a fun group of tourist in the group.

  • 07 October, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: This was our first Luxury Tour with Insight--but it won't be our last. Petra was a fantastic Tour Concierge. She took such great care of us--especially for my wife who has a walking problem. Arpi was the best driver we have ever come across. His coach was comfortable and spotless and he handled it as though it was a Mini. And having only 22 people on our tour made it easy to meet everyone and form new friendships. WONDERFUL!!

    Service: We thoroughly enjoyed our Land Tour with Luxury Gold. The care that we were given during our two week tour was outstanding!

  • 24 September, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I am trying to see the world, so this trip I added 5 countries to my log.

    Service: Petra and Arpi were the best. Nice hotels. Efficient trip.

  • 24 September, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: The tour was at an easy pace filled with informative guides, top hotels, dining experiences and VIP tours.

    Service: The Luxury Gold experience was definitely a VIP vacation. The tour ****** was extremely professional, organized and very detailed.

  • 23 September, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: The sites in Central Europe with Luxury Gold vacations were amazing. Loved every stop in each country. All the tour guides were full of information about each location we stopped at. All the hotels were top of the line and all excursions and meals were superb. We were very well looked after by our tour guide Petra who had such a wonderful personality and was full of information about each excursion we went on. The bus was top of the line, and we could not have asked for a better driver. I would highly recommend doing this trip to Central Europe with Luxury Gold Vacations. Loved every minute of this trip.

    Service: Your customer service has been excellent. Our tour guide Petra was amazing. Can't say enough about her. She totally looked after all our needs. She was such a knowledgable person and was full of information on each stop as we travelled through each country in Central Europe. Wonderful personality. Our bus driver Arpe was a fabulous driver. He amazed all of us with his skills at parking the bus in almost any spot. Felt totally at ease with his driving. The bus we were in was so comfortable with lots of room and always clean. It looked like a brand new bus. Hotels were superb. Top of the line. We felt totally pampered! I would definitely recommend the trip to Central Europe with Luxury Gold. The sites were amazing.

  • 23 September, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Primary reason for choosing this particular tour

    Service: Good hotels, tours, and small group size.

  • 23 September, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: While luxury gold is 5 star, I gave this 4 star as the stop at Czech Krumlov was not a good hotel. I would have preserved extra time in another of the cities. Perhaps a lunch stop rather than overnight. Otherwise, the cities were perfect! Traveling by coach was great. A few days on the bus long, but saw the countryside.

    Service: Great tour director, and local experts. Hotels, except for one, were wonderful. We chose the itinerary as we were very interested in the history and family connections. That part didn’t disappoint. The small group was wonderful, and we enjoyed being able to get to know people. Would use a luxury gold again.

  • 06 August, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Fue un viaje muy bonito y tranquilo.

    Service: Estuvimos muy contentos con su servicio, están muy órganizados, el autobús muy cómodo y amplio, nuestra anfitriona muy amable y preparada, el chofer manejaba muy bien, la mayoría de las cenas y comidas incluidas bastante buenas, los tours y visitas en algunos sitios muy completas en otros les falto ver puntos importantes, pero en general bien.

  • 30 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Itinerary was great, but the food options were limited.

    Service: Our tour Concierge, Brianna Dransfield was incredibly organized and made sure everyone on the tour was well taken care of. She was also very well knowledgeable about all the history in the countries that we travelled and made it very interesting. Would love to travel on one of her other tours in the future.

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