Classic Christmas Markets
|Resort:||Classic Christmas Markets|
|Destination:||Austria, Europe, Germany|
Experience the 600-year-old holiday spirit of Christkindlesmarkts in Germany, Austria and France. Sip mulled wine and collect unique handicrafts, hand-made ornaments and toys at some of the largest and most famous Christmas markets in Europe. Spend three nights in the traditional Alpine village of Oberammergau and two nights in the heart of the Black Forest. Bask in holiday cheer as you stroll along the cobblestone streets of Innsbruck, capital of Tyrolean Austria. Explore historic Nuremberg, Wrzburg and Rothenberg, some of the best preserved medieval towns in Europe. Visit the famous Nuremberg Christmas Market dating back to 1628, where you can sample sausages and gingerbread. In Innsbruck, embark on your choice of a cultural or architectural walking tour. Explore Strasbourgs Petit France and its quaint market stalls huddled around the imposing cathedral.
Day 1: Overnight Flight
Embark on a glorious holiday adventure through the traditional Christmas markets and historic towns of Central Europe. On this journey you will have time to sip mulled wine and shop for handicrafts in some of the oldest and most famous Christmas markets in Europe.
Day 2: Oberammergau, Germany – Tour Begins
Oberammergau is the perfect picture of a Bavarian Alpine village. Step back in time as you stroll the streets past old-world cottages and shops covered in colorful frescos. It is the ideal place to shop for cuckoo clocks, nutcrackers and Hummel figurines. This evening, join your fellow travelers for dinner in your traditional village inn.
Day 3: Oberammergau – Innsbruck, Austria – Oberammergau
Traverse the Bavarian landscape to the Tyrolean town of Innsbruck, nestled in the heart of the mountains. Today you have the choice of one of two leisurely walking tours: you may join a local guide as you discover the citys history, culture and popular attractions including Maria Theresien-Strasse, the Hofburg and the Golden Roof; or, perhaps you would prefer to embark on a tour focusing on Innsbrucks unique architectural structures including its famous ski jump. The remainder of the day is at leisure to shop in the many specialty stores and the cozy Christmas market.
Day 4: Oberammergau – Munich – Oberammergau
This morning, travel to Munich and be introduced to this exciting city with a panoramic tour featuring the Marienplatz, the Glockenspiel and Olympic Park. Enjoy leisure time to independently explore Munichs historic area and the Christmas market. Later, return to Oberammergau where you will have time to stroll about the village, perhaps shopping for the intricate woodcrafts the town is known for. This evening, enjoy a magical dinner featuring a visit by local entertainers from this village, famous for its Passion Play.
Day 5: Oberammergau – Black Forest
Depart Oberammergau and travel through the scenic countryside of Germany to the heart of the Black Forest. Here you can relish the peacefulness of the surrounding forested mountains.
Day 6: Black Forest – Strasbourg, France – Black Forest
Travel the picturesque valleys of the Black Forest and country roads of the Alsace to the provincial capital of Strasbourg, France where centuries of Roman, French, German and Alsatian influences blend together to lend this city its unique character. Enjoy a guided tour of the Old Quarter, “Petite France,” featuring the Cathedral of Notre Dame, considered one of the noblest achievements of Western architecture. Mingle with the locals as you explore the Christmas market featuring local crafts and traditional food and drink before returning to Germany.
Day 7: Black Forest – Nuremberg – Würzburg
Depart the Black Forest for the Franconia region of Germany. Drive to historic Nuremberg for a city tour. Learn about old towns 900-year-old ramparts that surround the city; the Imperial Castle, and the Justice Palace, where the War Crimes Tribunal sat in 1946. Your city tour concludes with a visit to the historic Nuremberg Christmas Market, one of the oldest and most famous markets in Germany dating back to 1628. Here you can spend time sipping Gluwhein and sampling roast sausages. Over 200 wooden stalls have given the Christmas market its name Little Town from Wood. You can find items like Nuremberg spicy gingerbread, fruit loaves, bakery goods, sweets, Christmas tree angels and toys. Continue to Wrzburg and enjoy a free evening to shop in the lively Christmas market.
Day 8: Würzburg – Rothengurg – Würzburg
Explore Wrzburg with a local guide to discover the citys history. This ancient wine town is rich in historic sites, including the magnificent 18th-century residence of the prince-bishops, boasting the largest ceiling fresco in the world; and the ornate Alte Mainbrucke, the oldest bridge on the River Main. This afternoon, venture to lovely Rothenburg, one of the most well-preserved medieval walled towns in all of Germany. Tonight, say goodbye to your fellow travelers during a farewell dinner.
Day 9: Würzburg – Tour Ends