Trip Type : N/A

Ultimate Europe

Expat Explore
4.2 . Great
84%
Travel Style: N/A
Physical Level: Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
26 days
From: $ 3,150 $ 121 / day
Checking price

Overview

Short Description

26 Days, 14 Countries. The ultimate Europe tour allows travellers time to explore European cities such as Bruges, Amsterdam, Berlin, Prague and Vienna

Trip Type N/A
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport N/A
Start City London
End City London

Trip Includes

  • 25 nights' accommodation in twin rooms with private en-suite facilities
  • Single travellers have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure a private room
  • Services of your Expat tour leader, who will be on hand with advice and tips to ensure that you get the most from your trip
  • You can also book any of the optional excursions available during your tour with your tour leader – please see the 'Essential Information' tab for more details
  • 25 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 10 dinnersAll taxes and feesAny public transport used as part of the tour (excludes free days) Modern air conditioned coach with reclining seats, TV for showing DVDs, and toilet
  • 31 Experiences (including guided walking tours, orientation walks, driving tours of cities plus other exciting experiences) Free Expat Explore tour souvenir – a memorable gift of your once in a lifetime trip

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Itinerary

Day 1: London - Bruges - Amsterdam

Welcome to your 26 day tour of Europe – we call it the Ultimate Europe tour as over the next 26 days you are going to see Europe’s most popular cities, landmarks and destinations! Waving goodbye to London, we cross the English Channel and drive through France, then stop off in the ‘Venice of the North’ – Bruges. The Belgian city is a small but picturesque city, with breathtaking medieval architecture. Onwards to the Netherlands, you will notice the landscape change to windmills and waterways, as you approach the city of Amsterdam. After everyone has checked in to their rooms and freshened up we'll take a short drive into the centre of Amsterdam, where you'll have some free time to enjoy the city at your leisure this evening.

Experiences
Visit to Bruges: a stop in this beautiful medieval town with some free time so you could try the signature national dish of frites and moules, see or even climb the Belfry Tower,  have a Belgian beer or buy some amazing Belgian chocolate.

Accommodation
Hampton by Hilton Schipol Airport
Holiday Inn Express Schipol Airport
Park Inn Plaza Amsterdam Airport
Crowne Plaza Amsterdam Schiphol
Lake land Hotel
Other Foods to try
Along with the famous canals and medieval architecture, Bruges is a chocolate hotspot! Head to Katelijnestraat street in the south of Bruges (your tour leader can point you in the right direction), where you will find many chocolate shops.
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 2: Dutch countryside tour

The morning begins with an entertaining demonstration, on how traditional Dutch clogs are made (by hand), followed by a lesson in local cheese making. There is time to pop some clogs on, and taste the cheesy treats. Your next stop for the day is to the historical windmill village of Zaanse Schans, where you will discover how they were vital to industrial development to the Netherlands. This is a great chance to get some fabulous photos! A visit to the quaint sea side village of Volendam allows you to stretch your legs, wander the main street filled with cafes and local nick-nacks and admire the sprawling views. We'll then head back into the centre of the city and enjoy a cruise of the iconic canals with an included lunch. Your afternoon is free to spend as you wish; there are numerous museums and art galleries to choose from - why not visit Anne Frank’s house, the Van Gogh museum, take a bicycle tour or simply wander the streets and canals.

Experiences
Visit Volendam: a famous picturesque Dutch fishing village.
Visit Zaanse Schans: the iconic windmill village.
Cheese and clogs demonstration: see how these famous shoes are traditionally made by hand and taste some fantastic cheeses. Of course the chance to shop and get those unique souvenirs.
Amsterdam Canal Cruise: sail along Amsterdam's stunning canals and enjoy a delicious pizza as you cruise. Choose from six types of pizza, Ben and Jerry's ice cream, and you can also upgrade to include soft drinks, beer or wine.

Accommodation
Hampton by Hilton Schipol Airport
Holiday Inn Express Schipol Airport
Park Inn Plaza Amsterdam Airport
Crowne Plaza Amsterdam Schiphol
Lake land Hotel
Other Foods to try
The Dutch tradition of making cheese stretches all the way back to the Roman times. At the cheese making demonstration you will have the opportunity to try typical Dutch varieties, such as Gouda, Edam, Maasdammer (a nutty cheese with large holes), Boerenkaas (raw milk cheese), goat's cheese, smoked cheese and Frisian clove cheese (made with cumin and cloves).
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 3: Amsterdam - Berlin

Today you continue your Europe tour into Germany. The city of Berlin has a positive energy which bursts in every direction. There is an eclectic mix of different music styles and street art - a stark opposite of the lifestyle which was reflected in times when the city was divided into East and West during the Cold War. Although there are constant reminders of the oppression suffered by the German people who were contained within the walls of the city, the modern day version is practically the opposite of this. If you have time before dinner take a short walk to the river and check out the Berlin Wall. Tomorrow you will have plenty of time to explore the city in depth.

Experiences
This evening enjoy a traditional German dinner, including sausages (chicken or pork) with sauerkraut or mashed potatoes. A vegetarian option is also available.

Accommodation
IBIS Berlin Ostbahnhof
Ibis Berlin City West
Grand City Berlin City East
Tryp by Wyndham City East
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 4: Berlin

Today, you will be introduced to Berlin on a locally guided walking tour of the city - visiting such poignant locations as the Brandenburg Gate, the Reichstag, Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the Site of Hitler’s Former Bunker, Luftwaffe HQ, 17th June Street, The Berlin Wall, The Former SS Headquarters, and Checkpoint Charlie. Visitors to Berlin are fascinated with the history surrounding the division of the city in to East and West, and significant locations which featured in news bulletins and TV footage of the day. After the walking tour you'll have the afternoon free to explore the city, or join an optional excursion to Sachsenhausen concentration camp.

Experiences
Walking Tour of Berlin: Enjoy a walking tour with a local guide who will explain the amazing history of this vibrant city where you will see the Brandenburg Gate, the Reichstag, Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the site of Hitler’s Former Bunker, Luftwaffe HQ, 17th June Street, the Berlin Wall, the Former SS Headquarters, and Checkpoint Charlie.
Optional Excursions
Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp Memorial €30
Hop on hop off bus tour €30
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.

Accommodation
IBIS Berlin Ostbahnhof
Ibis Berlin City West
Grand City Berlin City East
Tryp by Wyndham City East
Other Foods to try
Must-try dishes in Berlin include currywurst (sliced sausages served with curry ketchup), döner kebab and senfeier (hard-boiled eggs and mashed potato covered in a creamy mustard sauce).
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 5: Dresden - Prague

It’s time to say farewell to Berlin and hello to Prague, stopping off in the German city of Dresden on the way. Virtually rebuilt from the ground up after bombing attacks in WW2 destroyed the city centre, Dresden is immaculate and stylish. The grand buildings are no reflection on the pain they suffered during the bombings, and it is a credit that this city has been so lovingly put back together. Try some of the local German food - such as Bratwurst, and have a wander around the beautifully paved streets. Heading east to the Czech Republic, it is time to get excited about what lays ahead - Prague is an unforgettable city! The historic centre was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992, and your locally guided walking tour will introduce you to many locations, which you will want to explore in more depth on your free day tomorrow. Prague has a vibrant nightlife and a stunning aspect which equally rivals it’s daytime beauty. Watch the lights dance across the river as you cross the Charles Bridge, and marvel at the castles lit against the night sky.

Experiences
Visit to Dresden: a short comfort stop in Dresden in the East of Germany, also known as the "Florence at the Elbe" due to its location on the banks of the Elbe River. You will see excellent examples of Baroque architecture, the old palace, Zwinger complex, Martin Luther monument and some time to try some of the local food.
Prague local guided walking tour: see the Old Town Square, Wenceslas Square, St. Vitus Cathedral, Petrin Tower (Mini Eiffel Tower), Charles Bridge, Church of Our Lady before Týn, and a view of Prague Castle.
Prague dinner: experience authentic Czech cuisine at our local restaurant on your first night in Prague, the history of this restaurant dates back hundreds of years and it is a favourite place for locals as well as our Expat Explore groups. You will also have the option to try the famous Czech Beer, Budweiser anyone?

Accommodation
Hotel Duo
Other Foods to try
Enjoy traditional Czech food, including sausage rolls, roast beef or pork and apple strudel (vegetarian options available).
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 6: Prague - Free day

Treat yourself to the fairytale magic of Prague - often aptly described as the "Jewel in the Crown" of central Europe. This ancient city has an essence which combines youthful inquisitiveness and old world wisdom. Highlights of the day might include the majestic Prague Castle, the famous Charles Bridge (you need to also see the views from the bridge at night - simply stunning...), the ‘Old Town’ and the Jewish Quarter. There is also a ‘Secret Garden’ which leads to a manmade grotto - see if you can find it! Prague's dramatic history is reflected in the beauty of the architecture of churches, opera houses, concert halls and parks. There are numerous beer halls in which to sample a local brew, and for those who wish to put your stamp on the city, why not visit legendary Lennon wall - a tribute to John Lennon and words of peace, which is added to on a daily basis by the thousands of visitors to the city.
Attractions to discover in your free time
Charles Bridge Towers Daily 10:00 am - 6:00 pm [All year] Adults CZK 90, Children CZK 25
Prague Castle Daily 09:00-4:00 pm [All year] Adults CZK 250, Children CZK 125
Old Jewish Cemetery - Jerusalem Synagogue - Jewish Museum Daily Sun-Sat 9:00 am - 9:00 pm [All year] Adults CZK 480, Children (6-15 yrs) CZK 320
Museum of Communism Daily 9:00 am - 9:00 pm (All year) Adults CZK 180, Children (under 10) Free with paying adult
Optional Excursions
Traditional Czech Folk Music & Dance Evening €35
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.


Day 7: Bratislava - Vienna

Today you will continue your tour of eastern Europe towards the Slovakian capital of Bratislava. Located on the Danube River, the city is a melting pot of numerous nationalities and religions. Your tour leader will take you on an orientation tour to show you some of the highlights, including a photo stop at the iconic castle. We then travel on to the Austrian city of Vienna - boasting some of Europe’s most impressive architecture, and a cultural heritage steeped in glorious flamboyance and style. Home to Sigmund Freud, the Vienna boys choir, a clutch of the worlds most celebrated composers (...try Mozart, Beethoven & Brahms), the United Nations, OPEC and Weiner Scnitzel, the city centre has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. Take a glance at the famous Schonbrunn Palace as you approach Vienna, and once you have arrived, explore the centre on your guided walking tour of the city. Taking in the Golden Mile, Imperial Castle and St Stephen’s Cathedral, allow the history to wash over you and marvel at Vienna’s significance in modern and ancient history.

Experiences
Orientation Tour of Bratislava: on your approach you will see Bratislava Castle. Bratislava is the capital city of Slovakia and your Expat Explore tour leader will take you on a orientation tour of the city where you will see the Old Town, Primatial Palace, Michael’s Gate, the Main Square, Old Town Hall, Slovak National Theatre and Reduta, and make a photo stop at Bratislava Castle.
Local Guide Walking Tour of Vienna: on the drive into Vienna, Austria’s capital city, you will see the Schonbrunn Palace before reaching the Inner City and one of the best vistas from Belvedere Hill. Vienna is known as the ‘City of Music’ due to its classical heritage and the prodigies that worked there including Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms to name a few, as your local guide on your walking tour will tell you. The tour starts at the Golden Mile on the Ring Strasse (Parliament, City Hall, Burgtheater), then discover the courtyards and passages around the Hofburg (Imperial Castle) and St. Stephen’s Cathedral, which is Vienna’s geographic and historic centre.

Accommodation
Fourside Hotel Vienna City Center
Courtyard by Marriott Wien Schoenbrunn
Other Foods to try
Schnitzel - a boneless meat, thinned with a meat tenderizer, coated with flour, beaten eggs and bread crumbs, and then fried. Similar to the French dish escalope, it is typically made from chicken, beef, turkey or pork.
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 8: Ljubljana - Venice

This morning we head for Slovenia, and the the small city of Ljubljana. A local guide will escort you on a walking tour of this fairytale city, pointing out the numerous bridges and brilliantly preserved baroque, Gothic and medieval architecture. Take in the stunning scenery as you head south, crossing the border into Italy. Welcome to Venice! This unique city straddles 118 islands, and is known for its canals, gondolas, art and traditional glass and lace making. This evening you will have free time to relax at the hotel, or join an optional excursion to experience Venice by night on a traditional water taxi.

Experiences
Local Guided Walking Tour of Ljubljana: your local guide will take you on a walking tour of this city, the capital of Slovenia where you will see the medieval old town, Preseren Square, City Centre, the Riverfront, Dragon Bridge and Cobblers Bridge.  Although not on the walking tour you may wish to see St. Nicholas Church built in the 13th century to honour St. Nicholas, patron of fishermen and boatmen and the present structure dates from 1701 and is a fine example of Baroque architecture.
Optional Excursions
Venice by night €30
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.

Accommodation
Elite Residence Hotel
NH Laguna Palace
Hotel Complex Ambasciatori & Delfino
Hotel Venezia
Other Foods to try
Visit a "gostilna" restaurant, a traditional place to enjoy good food and wine in good company. Often serving dishes prepared to old recipes using local ingredients.
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 9: Venice - Free day

Your tour leader will escort you into the heart of Venice and take you on an orientation walking tour of the city, so you can make the most of your time here and plan for the rest of your free day. Get your cameras ready for the world famous St Marks Square, Grand Canal, Rialto Bridge and more! If you want to see how Venice's iconic glass and lace art is created, an optional excursion to the islands of Murano and Burano provides the perfect opportunity. Alternatively, if it is a warm day, why not head for a dip with the locals at the ever popular Lido Beach? There are hundreds of little cafés alongside the canals, offering a unique view of the waterways and a variety of food and wine options.
Optional Excursions
Venice Gondola Ride €20
Murano, Burano & Venetian lagoon €45
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.


Day 10: Venice - Rome

Continuing on the Italian leg of your Europe tour, the vibe of Venice will suddenly be substituted by the richness of Rome! After a picturesque drive through the Italian countryside, the Italian capital looms, buzzing with activity, tradition, passion, and an energy of its own. A local Roman guide will introduce you to the locations which make this city so beloved and famous, on an evening walking tour of the city. The Spanish Steps, Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Roman Forum and the Coliseum...just for starters! Whilst at the Trevi Fountain, toss a coin over your shoulder; legend has it, that you will return to Rome again one day. On the way back to our accommodation for the evening, you can start to plan what to do with your free days.

Experiences
Walking Tour of Rome: this city has so much to see and do we can’t list everything here but your walking tour of Rome with a professional local guide will give you a great start for further exploration in your free time. You will see the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Arch of Septimus Severus, the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon, Piazza Navona (Fountain of the Quattro Fiumi) and the Spanish steps.
 

Accommodation
Hotel Cristoforo Colombo
Hotel Club House Roma
Hotel American Palace
Other Foods to try
Typically based on seasonal ingredients prepared in a simple way, with lots of vegetables (peas, artichokes and beans), meat (lamb and goat) and cheeses (Pecorino romano and ricotta).
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 11: Rome - Free day

Today is a free day for you to experience Rome's ancient history, exquisite culture and delicious food - we offer an optional food tour and an optional excursion to Castel Gandolfo, the pope's summer residence. Later this afternoon you'll also have the opportunity to visit the Vatican City - the smallest country in the world! Inside the walls, you can visit the Sistine Chapel and see for yourself the famous ceiling painted by Michelangelo, as well as numerous other famous art pieces dotted around the buildings.
Optional Excursions
Vatican City guided tour €50
Castel Gandolfo €70
Roman food tour €60
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.


Day 12: Rome - Free day

Another free day in the capital to explore as you wish. You can accompany your tour leader on an optional excursion to Pompeii, or visit the spectacular Colosseum, which offers an unbelievable feeling of drifting backwards in time, to when gladiators, chariots and lions dominated the arena. The Italians believe in taking it easy, so why not chill out at a trattoria with some tasty morsels, a cold beverage and some good conversation this evening.
Optional Excursions
Pompeii Day Trip €80
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.


Day 13: Rome - Florence - Tuscany

Today we head straight to the heart of the picturesque Tuscan region, made famous for wine, great food, art, architecture and the birthplace of Renaissance. Your first stop is the romantic city of Florence, where your local Italian guide can’t wait to show you around. The Duomo, Piazza della Signoria, Ponte Vecchio and Santa Croce Basilica all feature in this guided tour, as well as many other works of art - the street sculptures are amazing! Time to wind down and give yourself a break from the buzz and noise of the big cities - tonight you will head to your accommodation in the beautiful Tuscan hills, where the soft afternoon light which radiates across the land and everyone looks good in a ‘selfie’ at this time of day - is it any wonder this region attracts and inspires so many famous artists? After checking in to your accommodation in the ancient spa town of Montecatini Terme, you can enjoy the optional Tuscan dinner before embarking on an evening stroll to relax the mind and explore the town...

Experiences
Walking Tour of Florence: the capital city of the Tuscan region of Italy and considered to be the birthplace of the Renaissance.   We will take you on a walking tour with a professional local guide where you will see Florence's Baptistery, Bell Tower, Gates of Paradise, Brunelleschi's Dome, Piazza della Signoria, Palazzo Vecchio, Ponte Vecchio.
Optional Excursions
Tuscan Dinner €22
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.

Accommodation
Hotel Massimo d'Azeglio
Hotel Meridiana Florence
Other Foods to try
Lampredotto is a Florence street food, consisting of the fourth stomach of the cow cooked in a broth and then served with salsa verde or/and spicy sauce.
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 14: Pisa - French Riviera

Before saying 'bonjour' to France you will spend some time visiting one of the most iconic landmarks of Italy - the Leaning Tower of Pisa! A UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with the neighbouring cathedral, cemetery and baptistry, this 56m, 840 year old Bell tower draws millions of visitors from all over the globe, namely for one thing...To have their picture taken pretending to push the tower back up! So get creative, get into position - these snaps are always the most memorable. After a scenic drive through the last of the Italian countryside, you cross the border into France. Bonjour to the French Riviera! Having made it to the south of France, you will see one of the most picturesque strips of coast in the world, where the ocean laps the shore, and it’s holiday season all year around.

Experiences
Visit to the Leaning Tower of Pisa: your chance to see the world famous Leaning Tower of Pisa and take some iconic pictures of you holding up the tower.
 

Accommodation
Kyriad Nice Gare
Ibis Budget Nice Californie Lenval
Other Foods to try
Bouillabaisse - a traditional fish stew originating from Marseille.
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 15: Monaco - French Riviera

Today you will have the morning free to explore the French Riviera. This is the playground for the rich and famous - keep your eyes open for celebrities and stars whilst you are enjoying the sights! This afternoon we'll experience the glitz and glamour of the world-famous Principality of Monaco, a microstate on the southern coast of France. On our way we'll stop at a perfumery, where you'll learn more about the history and science behind these fragrances. On arrival in Monaco we'll walk to the Princes Palace, the official residence of the Sovereign Prince of Monaco, which offers amazing vistas from a viewpoint overlooking the super yachts in the harbour. We'll then take you to visit the legendary Casino de Monte-Carlo, where you'll have some free time to try and win your fortune on the tables and slots (entrance fee not included).

Experiences
Visit a perfumery: dating back to the 18th century, this traditional French perfumery is one of the oldest in the region. Perfume making is an art that dates back to antiquity and during your guided tour you will learn all about the complex processes involved in capturing and bottling these exquisite scents. Afterwards you will have the opportunity to visit the gift-shop if you wish to take a keepsake home.
Monaco: visit this tiny principality and the second smallest and most densely populated country in the world! Take a scenic coastal drive from Nice, stopping first at a viewpoint for stunning views over the harbour, where super yachts are anchored. The Grand Casino (entrance fee applies) is particularly spectacular, and the castle district offers beautifully preserved architecture and views of the coast and city.

Accommodation
Kyriad Nice Gare
Ibis Budget Nice Californie Lenval
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 16: Arles - Barcelona

As you depart Nice and get back on the road headed for Barcelona, you will make a stop in the UNESCO Heritage Site of Arles, famous for its historical buildings and links to such artists as Van Gough (many of his paintings were inspired by this city). Don’t forget to check out the colourful houses and Roman Amphitheatre on this comfort stop. Once you arrive in Barcelona you will get acquainted with it's vibrant energy with a city coach tour. Keep your eyes open for the famous Sagrada Familia cathedral, and any of Gaudi’s spectacular examples of eclectic architecture. Then there is the lively La Ramblas - a pedestrian walk way which is full of market stalls, cafes, restaurants, street entertainers and just brimming with life. The city comes alive at night, so after dinner, head back into the heart of the action for some music and atmosphere.

Experiences
Visit to Arles: a comfort stop in this fascinating city with colourful houses that you may have seen in many of Van Goghs’ paintings of Arles. You will have time to see the impressive Roman Amphitheatre.
Driving Tour of Barcelona: a driving tour of this vibrant and diverse city that you can then explore further in your free time. You may see La Monumental Bullring, Sagrada Familia, Casa Batllo, Joan Miro Park, Fountain of 3 Rivers, The Venetian towers, Magic Fountain, Poble Espanyol (Spanish Village), Olympic stadium, Port of Barcelona, Christopher Colombus Column, Las Ramblas, and a photo stop with views over the city.

Accommodation
Ibis Meridiana
Ibis Santa Coloma
Eurostars Mitre
Other Foods to try
Tapas - Spanish finger food, consisting of small plates of delicious hot & cold appetizers.
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 17: Barcelona - Free day

Today is all yours to do with as you please! The best views of the city can be had from Park Guell, and you can take in the panoramic splendour and skyline of Barcelona. The park itself offers a very interesting design which is a product of Anton Gaudi’s challenging architectural visualisations. Barcelona is home to many of Gaudi’s building designs and you could spend the whole day simply locating each one. One of his most famous works is that of the unfinished Sagrada Familia - an interpretation of a Gothic cathedral which is unlike any building you will have ever seen. You can’t miss it from Park Guell, or most other vantage points in the city. Harbour tours, La Ramblas, the ‘Old Town’, museums, art galleries and some of Europe’s best shopping - there is much to do in this incredible city. If you wish to participate in our optional excursion, we can organise tickets for you to see a traditional Flamenco show! The dance of passion is performed with style, flair and energy, and is a real experience not to be missed.
Optional Excursions
Flamenco show & dinner €75
Montserrat €60
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.


Day 18: Barcelona - Free day

Hola! You have another free day in the Spanish city of Barcelona! Today you can make this your own, by continuing to explore the historical and cultural centres, indulge in some high end shopping and retail therapy, and much more. Football fans can use the extra day to visit Barcelona FC’s stadium - Camp Nou (there may even be a game on whilst you are here), Why not take advantage of the beaches and hit the shores! Ocean tours depart from the harbour and take you for a cruise up the coast to give you a unique perspective of the city. Barcelona is full of things to do, so there is no excuse not to get out and make the most of things. Fiesta, not siesta!
Optional Excursions
Catalan tapas dinner €30
Montserrat €60
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.


Day 19: Barcelona - Pont du Gard - Avignon

Adios, Barcelona! You have been wonderful! Heading back into France, continue through the French countryside, and get up close and personal, with a 2000 year old Roman Built aqua duct, at Pont du Gard. Walking along it, you will notice that there are no nails, cement or mortar holding the arches together. The Pont du Gard has been an attraction for centuries, primarily based on its immaculate three tiered construction, which carried over 44 million gallons of water a day to the local townships. A very important historical site, UNESCO have included it in their heritage listing - and rightly so.
Your final stop of the day will be in Avignon - also known affectionately as ‘The City of Popes’. It is an amazingly preserved, fortified city commune with a long history, stunning architecture and religious significance. Another UNESCO Heritage Site and you will see many more during your tour. Enjoy an orientation walking tour of Avignon, which will show you the Papal Palace as well as other significant structures, and after dinner, your evening is free to explore as you wish.

Experiences
Visit to Pont du Gard: a stop to see Pont du Gard, an ancient Roman aqueduct bridge that crosses the Gardon River. The bridge has three tiers of arches, stands 160 ft tall, and once carried 44 million gallons of water a day to the fountains, baths and homes of the citizens of Nîmes.
Walking Tour of Avignon: your tour leader will take you on a short orientation walking tour where you will see the Palais des Papes, the old Avignon town walls, Notre-Dame des Doms and Pont d’Avignon.

Accommodation
Ibis Budget Avignon
Ibis Nimes Ouest
Residhotel Grand Hotel Avignon
MERCURE Orange centre
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 20: Geneva - Swiss Alps

Today you will head to Geneva - home of the United Nations and Red Cross headquarters, and then onto the spectacular Swiss Alpine region to fill your lungs with the freshest mountain air. After departing Avignon, we leave France behind in search of mountains and snow. On the way, we make a lunch stop in Geneva where you can wander the small city centre and marvel at Lake Geneva. There is also an old town to explore, and some great shopping to be had. Now you are mountain bound, and heading into the heart of the famous Jungfrau Region. We take you on a stunning mountain drive through the Swiss Alps as we meander our way through rugged mountain faces, forests and Alpine lakes. Once in your mountain village, you can check in and then relax with a sunset view of the mountain peaks, and the cows grazing who are responsible for the wonderful milk that makes Swiss chocolate so amazing . After a hearty dinner, feel free to stroll the streets and breathe in that crisp, fresh air. Tomorrow will be a real highlight of your Europe tour.

Experiences
Visit to Geneva: the birthplace of the Geneva Convention and renowned for its place at the forefront of international diplomacy, it also has the largest lake in Western Europe, Lake Geneva. So maybe have lunch by the lake, or even a swim! Alternatively, you could walk towards the Old Town to climb the tower of St Peter’s Cathedral which offers gorgeous views of the city and the lake.
Driving Tour of Interlaken Area: spectacular views as we drive through this amazing country alongside lakes, breath-taking mountain vistas and scenic views of quaint Swiss towns.

Accommodation
Alpenrose Hotel & Gardens
Swiss Youth Hostel Interlaken
Hotel Baren Ringgenberg
Hotel Schonbhul
Hotel City Oberland
Das Hotel Sherlock Holmes
Extra Information
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner


Day 21: Swiss Alps - Free day

Are you excited? Today is all about Swiss bliss! We have an optional excursion to blow your mind and offers a guaranteed snow day! For 365 days of the year, Jungfraujoch is blessed with snow, and today you can visit the ‘Top of Europe’. The journey up the mountain is a highlight in itself, with unmatched views which will really make your Europe tour unforgettable. You will alight onto Europe’s highest railway station, and be able to view the 4000m glacier from unobscured viewing platforms. The majestic combination of ice, snow, rock and epic views will stay with you for life - time to take a deep breath and have some fun!. A snowball fight is a must, and for those artistic types, a snowman building competition. Snow angel anyone? Don’t forget those cameras...swiss cheeeese! Alternatively, for those choosing to spend their free day exploring a local village, why not head to Interlarken, a short train ride away, and try a traditional fondue, pick up some Swiss souvenirs, or just enjoy a wander through the streets?
Optional Excursions
Train to Jungfraujoch €175
White-Water River Rafting €108
Sky-diving CHF395
Paragliding €155
Swiss Dinner €25
* Stated prices and availability are subject to change.


Day 22: Liechtenstein - Munich - Bavaria

So long, Switzerland. We stop for lunch in Vaduz, the capital of Liechtenstein, and you will have time to eat, shop and see Vaduz Castle (the official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein) overlooking the city. We then travel on to Munich, where you'll enjoy an orientation tour of the city before dinner. Every year Munich plays host to one of the most famous beer festivals in the world from September to October - Oktoberfest! - and you will get a taste of this as you experience a traditional German beer hall. Enjoy a local beer on us...Prost! At the end of an action packed day we'll continue on to our hotel in Bavaria.

Experiences
Visit to Vaduz: visit the smallest yet richest German-speaking country and the only one to lie entirely within the Alps.   So you will see fabulous mountain views and a lunch stop in the capital Vaduz where you will have time to eat, shop, and see the Vaduz Castle which overlooks the capital.  The castle is a palace and official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein.
Orientation tour of Munich: your tour leader will take you on an orientation tour of Munich, the capital and largest city of the German state of Bavaria. You will see Karlsplats and Marienplatz, New Town Hall, Church of our Lady, and if you visit in the winter the traditional German Christmas markets.
Visit a traditional beer hall: we take you to visit a traditional beer hall and sample some German food and drink, including famous German sausages (vegetarian options available)


Availability

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Price From $ 3,150
Price Per Day: $ 121 per day
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Stride Featured in

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19 Expat Explore Travel Reviews & Ratings

84%
4.2 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 13
Great 3
Average 0
Disappointing 0
Terrible 3
Value
4.2
Guide
4.2
Activities
4.2
Lodging
4.2
Transportation
4.2
Meals
4.2

Ultimate Europe

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Company Reviews

Do not travel with ExpatExplore

1.0
Details
Value1.0
Guide1.0
Activities1.0
Lodging1.0
Transportation1.0
Meals1.0
Customers beware especially if you are from Asia doing the Europe tour. Apparently the British tour leader had been very rude and operated like military commander making her customers suffer so much. She did not care if the elderly people can catch up and sometimes gave travellers 5 minutes to have a meal while she took 15 mins to have a drink! The group even missed lunch on the last 2 days!

The tour leader will tell you that it is safe to leave your belongings in the coach in Rome/Italy. Travellers have lost their passports and valuable belongings (most recent trip in July, this family lost the bag containing all the Swiss watches and passports!). The tour leader would not even help in any way at all and the company will not refund any tour that you will miss due to sorting your lost passports.

From other reviews, the same thing happened and in the same place (Rome) since 2012. The coach theft seems like it has been going for some time and looks like a scam between the tour leader and bus driver that the company does not even know.

Customers were also asked to pay more than the advertised price for gondolas and entry to places of interest. No receipt was given.
There are customer feedback forms at the end of the tour but I very much doubt that she will submit the forms after having a read.
I am publishing this info for your sake, so that you do not suffer the same, it is up to you to heed this advice not to travel with ExpatExplore.
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Worse holiday ever!

1.0
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Value1.0
Guide1.0
Activities1.0
Lodging1.0
Transportation1.0
Meals1.0
The Taste of Italy tour was the worse holiday I have ever been to. Everything was rushed...The accommodation in Rome was far from the Colosseum. The guide in Rome was very soft spoken I couldn't hear a word. He should have used a microphone like the other guide. There was so much of walking to do..We couldn't even shop around in Rome. All the Hotels were a very poor choice. Breakfast and supper was pathetic..Food was bland, tasteless and not a wide variety to choose from at breakfast. First night in Rome we had salad for a started and a tiny piece of dry chicken we were not even offered a second piece. The hotel in Florence was better. What disappointed me is that the bus was not allowed to park next to the hotel. Instead the bus parked 1 block away and we had to rush with our luggage to the hotel. This was very unfair especially for my mother. Why were we not booked at a hotel where a bus was allowed to park. In Venice, why couldn't the hotel be more in the city centre. I feel the bus could have taken us to city and brought us back and public transport should have not been used. This is just some of the problems I faced. Lastly in the documents that I was sent I was promised a remembrance gift from Expat Explore, which I didn't receive.
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Had a really good time.

4.0
Details
Value4.0
Guide4.0
Activities4.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals4.0
I had a great time. The driver James was really friendly and drove in an extremely safe manner. Engaged with the group when not behind the wheel. Always appeared well rested and was ready to drive and assists people with their luggage.
Jamie the tour leader consistently demonstrated absolute commitment to the smooth operation of the trip and continuously made 101% effort in talking to everyone, good organizational skills and ensured that travellers were getting the best out of each destination. He never stopped yet never appeared tired, angry or frustrated. The coach was brand new although you couldn't really use the toilet on board unless it's an absolute emergency everything else about it was perfect. Most hotels were very very good and always clean. Breakfasts and included meals have all met or exceeded my expectation. We were constantly surprised with added value, many times. I have been provided with a transportation ticket for public transport even though it says in the brochure that we have to pay for that, at least one ticket was provided most times. See you next year for northern explorer expat. Expat is full of diverse passengers some young some old, some western some asian some South American, everyone gets along and we've had a really good time.
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Can't wait to book a next one.

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Did the Europe highlights tour on the 4th to the 13th of September. Had amazing time in amazing places. Our tour guide Steve was really good and our driver Paul was really good to.
Would definitely recommend booking a trip through expat to my friends and family. And can't wait to book the next trip .
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Exceeded my expectations!

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
This was my first tour, Italian Delights, I booked a budget tour so was expecting a budget tour but it exceeded my expectations in all ways. Roma was a great tour guide, friendly, funny and full of information. Would book again. Thanks for wonderful memories.
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Impressed!

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
So impressed it is my 1st time traveling with expat explore what an awesome experience, our tour guide Susan is great and has a lovely voice she sings and dance with us,love her. Our driver Kevin was awesome too he is concerned about our safety,time, cleanliness of our coach and he is there when we need him ..... Looking forward for another tour with you Guys
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