Saturday 28 September to Thursday 10 October 2013
Experienced local guides share their in-depth knowledge of the medieval city of Prague and the lakes and forests of South Bohemia. Discover a wealth of history and stunning scenery as this tour unfolds.
Day 1 To Stuttgart
Day 2 Prague
Leaving Stuttgart we travel to Nuremberg where we change trains. Continuing via Cheb we reach Prague late afternoon and check in to our hotel for a 3-night stay. Tonight we have a welcome dinner to introduce our local guide who will be with us for the next 8 days.
Day 3 City Tour
We hope our visit to Prague will capture the special atmosphere of this medieval town. Prague is regarded by many as the unspoilt jewel in Europe’s historic crown. We undertake a morning sightseeing tour of Prague ‘old town’ with a professional guide. Free time in the afternoon to explore with the city transport ticket provided.
Day 4 Karlstejn Castle
Day trip by train from Prague to Karlstejn, where we have a guided tour of the 14th Century Gothic Castle. It was built by Czech King and Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV as a place for safekeeping of the royal treasures, especially Charles's collection of holy relics and the coronation jewels of the Holy Roman Empire.
Day 5 Into Bohemia
Morning transfer by train from Prague to Český Krumlov. After we have checked into our hotel for a 3-night stay we will be taken to a local restaurant for lunch (included). After lunch we take a boat on the river that winds through the centre of Český Krumlov. Following the boat trip you are free to explore this magnificent medieval town until it is time for a guided tour of Český Krumlov at night.
Day 6 Hluboká and Trebon
Full day trip by coach to Hluboká Castle and Třebon. The castle is surrounded by beautiful gardens and is situated in the middle of a large English-style park. Inside there is an exhibition of Bohemian medieval art. Třeboňsko is one of few Czech Protected Landscape Areas and was therefore designated one of six Czech UNESCO MAB biospheric reserves in 1977. Lunch is included today.
Day 7 Visit to Sumava National Park
Morning departure by train, we travel to Volary in the heart of the park. During the Cold War this was very much a closed border area due to its proximity to Austria. The site was granted UNESCO status in 1990 and is now the largest state-protected area in the Czech Republic. There are many marked walking trails to help you explore. Return by train later in the day.
Day 8 Transfer to Brno
Following an early breakfast we transfer by train from Český Krumlov to Brno. We stay here for 3 nights and after checking in to the hotel we have a guided tour to help us get to know the town. Brno is the Czech Republic’s second city and as well as Špilberk Castle and the cathedral on Petrov Hill there are numerous museums and galleries. Brno is also home to a fairly extensive tram network.
Day 9 Olomouc
Today we have a day excursion to Olomouc, reputed to have been founded by Julius Ceasar. Since 2000 the Holy Trinity Column has been included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The column dominates the city centre and rises to a height of 35 metres. This and many other sites will be explained on a guided tour of the town. Return to Brno by train.
Day 10 At Leisure
Today you are free to do as you wish. You have the choice to stay in Brno or travel further afield using your Rail Pass. Maybe a visit to Austerlitz (Slavov) to see an exhibition of the 1805 Battle of the Three Emperors, where Napoleon was victorious over Ferdinand I of Austria and Tsar Alexander I of Russia. The actual battle site, 10km west of the town, is too difficult to get to by public transport. Whatever you do please be back in time for dinner where we say goodbye to our wonderful local guide.
Day 11 Farewell to Bohemia
We take a direct train from Brno to Dresden, via Prague and crossing the border into Germany at Bad Schandau. We arrive early afternoon for a 1-night stay and the rest of the day is free with the use of a public transport ticket for the city.
Day 12 Stuttgart
Transfer by train with a change in Nuremberg, we arrive in Stuttgart late afternoon for an overnight stay.
Day 13 Return to London
We take the direct TGV service from Stuttgart to Paris, where we connect with Eurostar to arrive back into London St Pancras late afternoon.
|Single room supplement:||£290|
|Deposit for this holiday:||£100|
Rates of exchange used are as at 1st August 2012