Company : Contiki
Duration: 1 week to 2 weeks
Approx Costs: 750 to 1000 £ Pound (UK)
If 'off the beaten track' is what you're after, then this tour is just for you!
Head out east beyond the former 'Iron Curtain' to the historic, charismatic & beautiful cities of Krakow and Budapest, stop off in Slovenia's hidden gem of Ljubljana, then top the experience off with a taste Italian culture at its finest. The perfect mix!
1 ARRIVE VIENNA
Check-in to the hostel and head straight out into Vienna to get a feel for the city’s style - there’s the imperial grandeur of Schönbrunn Palace, the elegantly ornate State Opera House and St. Stephen’s Cathedral – a Gothic masterpiece. Later, meet up with your Trip Manager and get to know your fellow Contiki travellers over dinner.
2 VIENNA TO KRAKOW
We hit the road this morning and travel to Krakow. En route we'll make a sobering stop at Auschwitz where you can learn all about the history & significance of this place steeped in history. On arrival, get in the know on Krakow. Founded in the 13th century, the former capital of Poland is famous for its silver mining heritage. Entrance & locally guided tours of Auschwitz & Birkenau concentration camp memorials
Left relatively untouched after World War II, Krakow is jam-packed with monuments and cultural treasures like turn-of-the-century buildings, museums, an impressive castle and the Jewish Quarter.
4 KRAKOW TO BUDAPEST
Continue south, past traditional villages and stunning alpine scenery. We stop for lunch in the heart of Slovakia, in pretty Banská Bystrica. Try some regional specialties like mutton and sauerkraut or smoked meats in the city’s pedestrian-only centre. It's back on the coach for some time to re-charge your batteries. Pop in your iPod or chill with a book as we make our way towards our next destination, Budapest, then check out the city sites as we take a driving tour through the city where east literally meets west.
Free time today means a chance to get around Budapest at your own pace. If you’re after something different, treat yourself to a truly local experience: a spa. With outdoor thermal waters, Art Nouveau architecture and treatments, this is the perfect way to unwind. For more of Budapest’s outdoor lifestyle, visit St Margaret Island in the heart of the city, a favourite among the city’s residents with its gardens, fountains, pools and ruins.
6 BUDAPEST TO LJUBLJANA
Say your farwells to Hungary today, we're off to Slovenia's capital. On arrival your Trip Manager will get you in on the know on this town, known as the economic & social hub of Slovenia. After you've got your bearings there's time to explore your way. Find a cute little spot for some people watching, hit the shops or grab your camera & explore.
7 LJUBLJANA TO VENICE
Today we're onto what's known as the “floating city”, Venice, packed with character, crammed with hidden lanes and linked by a network of canals. Jump on our private boat and travel through the waters of the lagoon to visit the city’s historical heart.
8 VENICE TO ROME
Criss-cross the Apennine Mountains on the road to Rome. Stylish Rome oozes energy and overflows with relics from another age. Our special access coach trip gets you right into the thriving atmosphere of this living timeline as your Trip Manager shows you the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia.
9 DEPART ROME
This morning, make the most of your time and discover the gems of this great city. Then it is time to say “arrivederci” to your friends as your tour finishes after lunch.
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