Having been involved in the travel business for over twenty five years, I have had the opportunity to visit every continent and see many of the world's greatest sights. As a result, I am often asked about my favorite places to visit. High on my list is ALPINE CENTRAL EUROPE. The unrivaled alpine majesty guarding pristine lakes and charming villages makes this a region that you have to see. Add the interesting history and centuries old culture and you have an unforgettable travel experience.
This is a custom itinerary, meaning it is designed by Webb Tours to see the places which we feel are most important. We find that national tour companies don’t included enough, are very expensive and often don’t visit the most important areas. This itinerary includes some out of the way places that you probably haven’t heard about. We look forward to showing you perhaps the world’s most beautiful region – and you’ll see why that is not an exaggeration. The Alps in southern Germany are as majestic as mountains get, combined with stunning lakes. In Austria, you add a level of “Quaint” to unimaginable scenery. In Switzerland… well, it’s Switzerland – King of the Mountains anywhere in the world from the Jungfrau Mastiff to the Matterhorn and everything in between. The tour will be directed by David Webb who has directed groups to Central Europe over a dozen times. We hope you can join us.
July 9, 2018: This morning we'll catch our flight for Europe. Because of the eight hour time change, we’ll arrive in Frankfurt on the morning of July 10th. Dinner and breakfast are served on the flight. (D)
July 10: Welcome to Frankfurt. We’ll arrive before noon and transfer to the hotel for a brief rest. It is important to stay active today to allow our bodies to adjust to the new time zone. This afternoon, our Local Guide will show us the most important German gateway and banking city from a totally different perspective on a walk through times and history and admire the "Römerplatz", the historic center of town and the old patrician houses that make Frankfurt famous. Tonight, we will enjoy a delicious welcome dinner with our traveling companions. (B, D)
July 11: Today we drive along the Romantic Road to medieval Rothenburg—a picturesque, walled town perched above the Tauber River. Enjoy the rest of the day wander the town, visit the world-famous Christmas store and take in the views and charm. Many have said that if you had to pick only one place to visit in the whole of Germany, it should be Rothenburg as it is one of the best preserved medieval towns in all of Europe. The entire walled town is a living museum. The town wall connects five medieval gates complete with guard towers that date from the thirteenth to sixteenth centuries. We’ll walk along the narrow cobblestone streets and admire the gothic, renaissance, and baroque houses and fountains. Climb to the top of the Rothenburg Town Hall Tower (from 1250 AD) for a wide-angle view of Rothenburg and take pictures of the surrounding pastoral countryside. Walking in Rothenberg is like stepping back into medieval times. You can sense the old roots of the continent. Not to be missed! (B).
July 12: Today we continue to the south passing through Munich as we make our way into Austria – my vote for the most beautiful country in Europe. We’ll be in the Salzburg area by mid day. Just to the east of Salzburg is the famous Austrian Lakes District and we’ll spend some time here this afternoon. Picturesque towns like St. Gilgen, Mondsee (where Maria married Captain Von Trapp in the Sound of Music) and charming St. Wolfgang. Pristine, calm lakes surrounded by green valleys and high mountains. It is truly among the loveliest scenes in Europe. Dinner is included in Salzburg tonight. (B, D)
July 13: This morning we’ll be joined by a local guide that will take us on an interesting walking tour of Old Salzburg’s historic center. We’ll visit Mirabell Gardens, the Great Festival Hall, St. Peter’s Churchyard and the famous Domplatz. We’ll stroll by Mozart’s birthplace in the charming Getreidegasse. You’ll recognize several of the sites from The Sound of Music. You’ll then have time on your own for lunch and browsing in this most charming setting. This afternoon, we have included an excursion to Berchtesgaden and Hitler’s Eagle’s Nest. Built for his 50th birthday, this mountain-top retreat affords some of Austria’s most breathtaking views. A bus takes us up to the parking area and an elevator built into the mountain takes us to his “Tea House” on the top of the mountain. On the way back, we’ll wee the famous “Greenhouse” used in the Sound of Music. (B)
July 14: Today we enter the Tyrolean Alps and stop in the capital of crystal, Innsbruck. Enjoy a pleasant walk through its quaint medieval lanes to Emperor Maximilian’s Golden Roof. We then drive to the romantic Passion Play town of Oberammergau where you’ll have time to do some shopping and get some lunch. This afternoon’s highlight is a visit to King Ludwig’s magnificent Neuschwanstein Castle, one of the most famous European castles and copied by Walt Disney at his theme parks. We’ll follow our local guide through this fairytale castle on its craggy outcrop high above a sparkling lake and flanked by the spectacular Bavarian Alps. It doesn’t get any better than this. We stay in Oberammergau tonight. (B)
July 15: Today we continue our travels through western Austria into Switzerland making a stop in the principality of Lichtenstein along the way. The scenery is all around us and traveling on our comfortable coach affords lovely views in all directions. In the late afternoon we arrive in the heart of central Switzerland: Lucerne. The famous flower-clad covered bridge, the picturesque lake and towering mountains make this the Switzerland we all imagine. Optional folkloric dinner and show available tonight for those that are interested. (B)
July 16: This morning we enjoy a walking tour where we’ll see Thorwaldsen’s impressive Lion Monument, dedicated to the fallen Swiss Guards who protected the Royal House of France during the French Revolution. We’ll see the ornate patrician houses of the walled Old Town. Then, cross the famous covered Chapel Bridge to the Jesuit church. You‘ll then have time for lunch and browsing. The narrow alleys, uniquely painted houses and lakefront setting make this a fun town to explore. In the afternoon, we’ve included a cruise on Lake Lucerne which is a relaxing way to enjoy this incredible scenery. If the weather is clear today, you’ll have a chance for an optional cable car ride to the top of Mount Pilautus – something you’ll never forget. (B)
July 17: Today is another day packed with a variety of scenery and interesting places to visit. We cross the Brünig Pass to Interlaken, beautifully situated beneath the towering Jungfrau Massif and nestled between two lakes. We’ll go into the famous Lauterbrunnen Valley and visit Trummelbach Falls, a series of 10 glacier waterfalls INSIDE the mountain. I’ve never seen anything like it. We continue along the shores of Lake Thun to Bern which is Switzerland’s capitol city and the best example of medieval preservation alongside a beautiful modern river. A lovely dinner is included tonight at a local farm. It is truly one of the highlights of the trip as we dine with the mother of the house on local Swiss fare. Enjoy seeing this working farm and the scenery that surrounds it. We then return to our hotel. (B, D)
July 18: This morning we’ll see Bern with our knowledgeable local guide. We’ll stop at the Rose Garden for a panoramic view of the city and a look at the Medieval Old Town. We’ll see the hourly parade of painted figures at the Clock Tower and take our pictures of ornate, flower-adorned fountains. We’ll also make a stop at the Bear Park, symbol for the name of the town. You’ll fall in love with this place. This afternoon, we depart for the delightful Swiss mountain resort of Zermatt. En route, we’ll stop in the town of Montreux, situated on the shores of Lake Geneva. We’ll make a picture stop overlooking the Chillon Castle. Our hotel for two nights is in Zermatt. (B)
July 19: I know I’ve used many adjectives to now, but we have saved the best for last. There is simply no place on earth like Zermatt and no mountain like the Matterhorn. This is a pedestrian town and the only place you can see the Matterhorn in Switzerland. Our morning excursion takes us on the Gornergrat, Europe’s highest rack railway, which takes us closer to the base of the Matterhorn. The views can’t be overstated. You have free time this afternoon to enjoy Zermatt as you wish – there is lots to do. Dinner is included tonight. (B, D)
July 20: Today we work our way south over the famous Simplon Pass into the area knows as the Swiss Valais, an area renowned for its great mountain resorts. By late morning, we will arrive in the town of Stesa on the shores of beautiful Lake Maggiore. This is the famous Italian Lakes District with mountain scenes, lakeside towns and hillsides dotted with private villas. After lunch, we have included a boat ride to Isola Bella, one of the Borromean Islands in the middle of lake Maggiore. The island is quite small and split between a fabulous palace, manicured Italian gardens (which we’ll visit) and a quaint fishing village. You’ll have time to explore it as you wish. We then continue on to Milan and enjoy a farewell dinner with our group this evening. (B, D)
July 21: Today we transfer to the airport in Milan and catch our flight back to the states. You will never forget your journey to spectacular Alpine Central Europe!