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The Heart of Europe: Slovakia-Austria-Italy
Includes: Bratislava – Vienna – Carinthia and the Alps – Venice

Day 01 Saturday 


Your guide and bus meet you at the airport. Drive to the Slovak capital for a short sightseeing tour of the historic town centre, situated above the Danube river and dominated by the castle. Stroll along the old town and enjoy the food and rich cakes in one of the cafes. You will view the New Bridge with its UFO structure above, before crossing by bus into nearby Austria. Overnight in the region.

Day 02 Sunday  


Into the capital of Austria: The bus takes you along the “Ringstrasse” Boulevard with many magnificent buildings. It becomes apparent, that Vienna used to be the centre of a large Empire for many centuries, during the rule of the Habsburg dynasty: Imperial Hofburg (with Treasure Museum, Sissy Museum), State Opera, Museums of Arts and Nature History,  Parliament, City Hall, Burg Theatre, Stock Exchange and others. The centre including Saint Stephens Cathedral (built around 1147, Gothic Style), and the shopping streets “Kaerntner Strasse” und “Graben” are best explored on foot. Other attraction are:  The Karlskirche, the Belvedere Palace and Gardens; the Giant Ferris Wheel at the Prater entertainment park. Schoenbrunn Palace and Gardens, the Imperial Summer Palace of Maria Theresia and Sissy, is world famous. There is also a very good zoo at Schoenbrunn. For visitors with enough time, the Spanish Riding school with its Lipizzaner horse displays, a ride on a “Fiaker”, the horse drawn carriages in Vienna, and attending a concert with the music of Johann Strauss, the “King of the Waltz” are also options. In the evening the local Viennese like to visit a “Heurigen” (typical wine inn) on the outskirts of the city. Over night in an hotel in the region.

Day 03 Monday  


In the morning depart in a south westerly direction into the province of Styria. The capitalGraz prides a museum with the largest collection of old armour in the country. The old town, overlooked by a clock tower on a hill, is a  cultural world heritage site.  Outside Graz, in the village of Strassengel, the tower of the small church is reminiscent of the tower of St. Stephen in Vienna. Nearby visit a monastery with a church in magnificent baroque style. Drive over a hilly area, where wine is grown, on to the neighbouring province of Carinthia for over night.

Day 04 Tuesday  


Velden is a resort town on the biggest of the lakes of the province, Woerthersee, with a lake  side promenade and casino. Enjoy this popular place with its small shops, cafes and musical fountains. Take a boat trip on the lake (extra), passing the villas of the rich and famous, and visit the quaint village of Maria Woerth with its picturesque churches.

Day 05 Wednesday  


The main range of the Alps between the provinces of Carinthia and Salzburg is tackled by two long highway tunnels. On the way you pass the village of Werfen with its high castle and nearby ice caves, and Hallein with its salt mines. The town of Salzburg itself is famous for its mountain fortress, the Mirabell Palace and Gardens, its numerous churches and its theatres. This area is the setting of the “Sound of Music” and birthplace of Mozart. Enjoy strolling through this beautiful city and sample some of its sweet temptations like the “Mozart Kugeln” chocolates or the delicious “Salzburger Nockerln” soufflé. Return to your hotel in Carinthia for over night.

Day 06 Thursday  


The day is dedicated to scenic drives in this Alpine country: Along lakes and through picturesque landscapes you reach valleys with waterfalls and high mountain ranges. The small town of Gmuend is the unlikely birthplace of the Porsche cars, presented in a local museum. Reach some high ground by road and marvel at peaks of over 3.000 meters surrounding Alpine water reservoirs. Passing more lakes you return to your hotel.

Day 07 Friday


Early departure in a southerly direction: Soon the mountains will give way to the plains of Northern Italy. Through wide spread vineyards you get close to the Adriatic coast. Passing by various sea side resorts you reach Venice. The best approach is by boat, so you arrive directly at the famous Saint Marcus Square, with beautiful views. Explore this unique city of canals, palazzos, piazzas and narrow lanes. Especially of note are the Campanile and St. Marcus Cathedral, the Grand Canal and the Rialto Bridge. There are numerous museums with arts treasures, cafes and shops. Spend the night in an hotel outside Venice.

Day 08 Saturday  


Today you say goodbye and transfer to the airport, to board your flight back home.




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