Iceland is a country known for its natural wonders: glaciers, active volcanoes, black-sand beaches, geothermal areas, roaring rivers, majestic waterfalls, and beautiful lakes. On this Iceland escorted tour, you will start and end in Reykjavík, and you'll witness these natural wonders while enjoying exciting and unique experiences.
Scenic highlights include the mighty Gullfoss waterfall and Goðafoss – known as the "Waterfall of the Gods." Take pictures at Dettifoss, the most powerful waterfall in Europe (road conditions permitting). Drive by Eyjafjallajökull volcano, well known for the eruption that generated the massive ash cloud in 2010, and through the national park at Skaftafell to the Rangarping Eystra area. Enjoy a scenic drive to the lovely blue Lake Mývatn. In one of Iceland's most beautiful areas and with volcanic craters throughout the lake, it is teeming with bird life and is known for its geothermal activity. Also watch how Europe's largest glacier, Vatnajökull, flows into Lake Jökulsárlón, forming icebergs.
In Thingvellir – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – walk through the rift valley that marks the separation between the North American and European tectonic plates. In Geysir, walk with the chef of the Geysir restaurant through the geothermal areas, where you'll taste freshly baked bread cooked using the heat from the hot springs. You may wish to pair it with a traditional glass of geysir schnapps. Another unique and unforgettable experience on your tour is a boat cruise to see whales in their natural habitat or, based upon the season, witnessing the Northern Lights.
It begins with two overnights in Prague, one of Europe’s most magical cities. You’ll see Prague’s best-known treasures like St. Vitus Cathedral, a gothic masterpiece that dominates the skyline. Your river cruise will get underway as you sail through the Main Danube Canal with stops in some of Germany’s most intriguing cities. Also sail through the dramatic Rhine Gorge, considered the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine River. See ancient castles standing majestically on cliffs 400 feet above the water.
In the heart of the Moselle region, the wine village of Bernkastel, surrounded by Germany’s largest expanse of vineyards, will fascinate you with its narrow streets and half-timbered houses which have been standing since the Middle Ages. Before you leave, we’ll introduce you to some of the famed wines of the area. Along the enchanting Moselle River, make your way to the ancient city of Trier, Germany—believed to be even older than Rome. Many remnants of ancient Rome can still be found, such as imperial baths and the Roman Bridge, with stone pilings dating from 144-152 AD.
Your European river cruise through Central Europe comes to a close in the Luxembourg city of Remich. You’ll take many beautiful memories with you to recall this fantastic trip on the Main, Rhine, and Moselle Rivers.
Begin your panoramic French river cruise on the Seine with a visit to Paris—The City of Lights. See the sights in the heart of the city, including a visit to Notre-Dame Cathedral, or take a tour which will show you the iconic locales of the Louvre Museum, Arc de Triomphe, Eiffel Tower, and more.
Cruise to Conflans and choose between an excursion to visit Auvers-sur-Oise or Napoleon and Josephine’s Château de Malmaison. Then, continue on to Vernon to visit the home of master artist Claude Monet at the gardens of Giverny, or visit magnificent Bizy Castle. Your river cruise on the Seine sails on to Les Andelys for guided tours of this picturesque village, and nearby castle ruins.
Continue to Rouen for an excursion to Normandy. Tours of the WWII landing beaches, memorials, and monuments, or a “Taste of Normandy” tour to discover the farming traditions and culinary specialties are offered today. Next day, your visit to Rouen includes a walking tour of the village where Joan of Arc was martyred, as well as the Notre-Dame Cathedral, and Astronomical Clock. Last stop of your Seine River cruise is Le Havre, where you will enjoy a guided city sightseeing. Your vacation ends with a transfer to Paris.
From the ancient ruins of Rome and the fascinating sculptures in Florence to the scenic canals in Venice, this Italy trip is sure to delight. Among many things, you will see Rome’s must-see sights, including Michelangelo’s The Last Judgment at the Sistine Chapel, the historic Colosseum, the Roman Forum, and St. Peter’s Square and Basilica—all accompanied by inside stories that only locals know. In Florence, your expert local guide will take you to the Academy of Fine Arts to see Michelangelo’s David. But don’t worry—we give you VIP access, so you can skip the lines and spend your time inside the attractions and not bored in line! While hearing the stories and history behind the sights, you’ll also walk through Cathedral Square, Piazza della Signoria, and Santa Croce Square. In Venice, we’ve arranged for you to see a glassblowers’ presentation and enjoy a sightseeing tour once again with a local expert. See St. Mark’s Square and Basilica; visit Doges’ Palace, the symbol of Venice, and the Bridge of Sighs.
When you think of having an Eastern Europe vacation, what comes to mind? Perhaps it's visiting old churches and seeing historic sites that have been standing for many centuries. Perhaps you think of visiting cities bombed in World War II and restored to their former splendor. Or maybe you think of learning about the counties’ rich histories. If so, this Best of Eastern Europe guided tour includes all of that and more with overnights in Berlin, Warsaw, Krakow, Budapest, Vienna, and Prague. You’ll also have special experiences in some of the smaller towns as well. You'll enjoy a special lunch in Telc, one of the most beautiful towns in the Czech Republic, and taste a Trdelnik rolled pastry in Prague.