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29 Day Tour of Europe

This is a great tour for you to enjoy the many contrasts of Europe and its amazing sightseeing sites. Starting in London you'll head into Paris and from there span out across country after country; from the wild nightlife of Prague and Amsterdam to the chilled heat of Corfu .. there's something for everyone on this budget backpacking tour of Europe.

New for 2014: 25 Day Tour of Europe

 
 

Prices From: £2265
London Departure
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European Contrasts Tour including Corfu


 
 

Day 1 - London to Paris

Meet up with your travel team before we hit the road and take a ferry past the White Cliffs of Dover. We travel via World War I battlefields in the Valley of the Somme, to Paris.

After dinner we will depart for the 'Tour of Illuminations', where the French capital transforms into the "City of Lights". Lamp-lit bridges and cool little cafes give us a real taste of Paris' romance. Your Tour Manager will fill you in on the world's most recognised monuments, like the Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower. If you're adventurous, get right into French culture when you arrive at a Parisian cafe with the opportunity to try out France's national delicacy - escargot! You'll also get to toast the start of your tour with French Champagne.

Hotel Dinner
* See the White Cliffs of Dover
* Exclusive 'Paris by Night' sightseeing tour with Champagne & escargot
* See the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre, the Champs-Elysees, and Notre Dame Cathedral

Day 2 - Paris

This town is loaded with possibilities. Discover its many bistros, museums, tree-lined avenues and diverse quartiers (neighbourhoods).

Get a feel for French flair by window shopping on the Left Bank, step into the Notre Dame Cathedral or explore the endless galleries of the Louvre and get up close to the famous Mona Lisa. Try indulging in some delicious pastries and relax in one of Paris' many green spaces.

Tonight, treat yourself to a real Parisian night out, starting with an optional dinner in an atmospheric restaurant, where you can get to know your group. Then sign up for an authentic cabaret experience, complete with can-can girls and Champagne.

Cruise ship Breakfast
* Parisian Dinner Euro 34.50
* Nouvelle Eve cabaret show Euro 80.00

Day 3 - Paris to Beaujolais Wine Region

Southbound, we stop off at the massive 16th century Chateau Fontainebleau. Walk around the imperial gardens and check out the chateau's imposing, regal exterior.

We continue on through Burgundy's wine country to Beaujolais' green hills and vineyards.

Our team will make you feel right at home in our travel partners very own 16th century Chateau. There's a wine tasting within the Chateau's working winery, where our resident expert will teach you about Beaujolais wine as you swirl and sip on wines made in the area for centuries.

Special Stopover Breakfast, Dinner
* Special Stopover: French Chateau
* Wine tasting at Chateau
* See Chateau Fontainebleau
* See Chablis, Burgundy & Beaujolais vineyards

Day 4 - Beaujolais Wine Region

There's loads of time to catch up on some sleep, laze about the Chateau or position yourself poolside. Explore the French countryside with a walk through the vineyards and picnic in the hills above the Chateau. In the afternoon, get a feel for a real French country town and head into nearby Thieze.

Special Stopover Breakfast, Dinner, Picnic Lunch
* Special Stopover: French Chateau
* Picnic in the French countryside

Day 5 - Beaujolais Wine Region to French Riviera

Unwind on the coach, listen to your MP3 and take in the rustic beauty of Provence, known for its pretty landscapes of lavender, sunflowers and wild herbs.

We continues on the road to the rugged coast line of the stunning Cote d'Azur. Follow the beautiful sapphire waters past the movie-star glamour of Cannes (famous for its annual film festival), to Antibes.

Tonight get a taste of the high life in Monaco, the glamourous principality packed into just 1.92km2 and home to the Formula 1. Get the inside story on the Royal Family and their place of residence from your Tour Manager. Try your luck at a casino later on!

Travel Village Breakfast, Dinner
* Scenic drive along the Cote d'Azur
* See the Royal Palace in Monaco
* Rub shoulders with the rich & famous with a visit to a Monte Carlo casino

Day 6 - French Riviera

In your free time live a bit of the riviera lifestyle with a visit to one of the neighbouring towns like Cannes or Nice.

Try out the region's produce like lavender honey, aioli (garlic mayonnaise) and mouth-watering rose wine. Window shop the chic boutiques or choose a beach and catch some sun among all the bronzed bodies!

Travel Village Breakfast, Dinner

Day 7 - French Riviera to Florence

Next stop on the Riviera and home to the French perfume industry is Fragonard Perfumery. Learn about how perfume is made and some of its more surprising ingredients. It's also a chance to pick up a bottle or 2 at great prices.

Onwards to Italy, land of passion! En route to Renaissance Florence, we stop by Pisa and get up close to the famous Leaning Tower.

The scene-stealing Duomo Cathedral rises above Florence, which serves up frescoes, markets and priceless art. After dinner, walk along the River Arno with your Tour Manager, take in the atmosphere and head into the heart of Florence, where you can sit back and relax Tuscan style with a glass of Chianti wine.

Travel Village Breakfast, Dinner
* Visit a French perfumery
* See the Leaning Tower of Pisa

Day 8 - Florence

Jump start the day uncovering this open-air museum and its UNESCO World Heritage city centre.

Our Local Guide gives you the inside track as the group learns about Florence's cultural beginnings and explores streets crammed with artworks from masters like Michelangelo. Then take a look into a skillful demonstration of Florentine leather making and understand this region's traditional art.

With bargains and bustle, the city's markets are a great place to hang out. Grab a gelato and enjoy this gorgeous city.

Tonight, there's a choice of a group dinner - an authentic Tuscan feast. Try regional dishes in the heart of Florence. Then keep it moving with a night out and get your groove on at Florence's biggest club.

Travel Village Breakfast
* Discover the Medici Palace & much more on our guided walking tour of Florence
* See the Duomo, Basilica Santa Croce, Giotto's Bell Tower, the Baptistry & Piazza della Signoria
* Learn about Florence's leather craft with a demonstration
* Souvenir group photo Euro 11.00
* Tuscan Meal Euro 29.00
* Space Electronic Disco Euro 15.00

Day 9 - Florence to Rome

Travel through Tuscany's rustic hills, past the recognisable cypress tree landscapes of this olive oil producing region, to vibrant Rome.

Stylish Rome oozes energy and overflows with relics from another age. Our special access coach tour gets you right into the thriving atmosphere of this living timeline as your Tour Manager shows you the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia. Continue on foot to check out the Pantheon and Piazza Navona. Honour tradition at the Trevi Fountain and throw a coin in the fountain's waters (it's meant to improve your chances of returning to Rome!) or maybe hang out with your new friends at the Spanish Steps, sit back with a few slices of pizza and people watch.

Travel Village Breakfast
* Special access Rome sightseeing coach tour
* See the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, Piazza Venezia, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon & Piazza Navona
* See St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City

Day 10 - Rome

This morning, make the most of our Local Guide's inside knowledge with an optional guided tour of the Vatican Museums, including the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica. Then check out Rome's imperial glory by visiting the Colosseum and Roman Forum.

Take off into the city and absorb the atmosphere, as Vespas flash past timeworn monuments that are surrounded by fountains, pizzerias, cafes and bars. Before you hit the shops, let your Tour Manager point you in the right direction with some tips on the best buys.

In your free time, live the local lifestyle by indulging in a long lunch on a paved piazza or knock back a shot of espresso at the bar, like the Romans do.

Travel Village Breakfast, Dinner
* Vatican Tour Euro 34.00
* Imperial Tour Euro 26.00

Day 11 - Rome to Corfu

Pass gritty Naples, see Mt Vesuvius and plunge into Pompeii's well-preserved past in an interesting optional excursion and retrace ancient history with our expert Local Guide.

Then there's time to chill out on the coach, crossing through the rugged landscapes of southern Italy, before boarding the overnight ferry to Greece in Brindisi. Check out the amazing 360 degree views from the deck!

Adriatic Ferry Breakfast
* See Mt. Vesuvius
* Guided tour of ancient Pompeii Euro 19.50

Days 12 to 14 - Corfu

Corfu is all that's great about Greek island living. You'll immediately find yourself on "local time", browsing the markets of the UNESCO World Heritage listed Old Town and bargaining with the laid-back locals.

Jump on board George's Boat optional with a bunch friends for a fun day out on the water. It will give you another angle on idyllic Corfu. Work up an appetite swimming in the secluded spots and then feast on a lunch of olives, salad, cheeses, fresh bread and dips - prepared with ingredients from George's back yard.

Corfu also gives you the chance to dive into action with a selection of water sports, like parasailing, banana-boating and waterskiing. Otherwise hire a car for a deeper look into Corfu and venture across the island to explore some beautiful, remote beaches.

While you're here, there's a fun toga theme party - don't worry, we'll supply the outfit!

Special Stopover Breakfast, Dinner, Breakfast, Breakfast, Dinner
* Special Stopover: Corfu Beach Resort
* See the Venetian fortress in Corfu's old town
* Party in a toga on Corfu
* Caique Cruise around Corfu Island Euro 35.00
* Dinner & Greek Dancing Euro 33.00
* Car Hire Euro 55.00-155.00 (cost per day depending on car)
* Tour t-shirts From Euro 20.00 - 30.00
* Water sports From Euro 18.00 - 50.00

Day 15 - Corfu to Italy

Today we cruise up the Adriatic Sea to Venice. With a full day and night on board, you've got plenty of time to catch up on some sleep, kick back with a book or hang out with the group.

Adriatic Ferry Breakfast

Day 16 - Arrive Venice

On arrival in Venice, maybe grab a table on St Mark's Square and eat some delicious Italian food al fresco.

Cap off the day with an optional gondola ride with your friends. Take a bottle of prosecco (Italian sparkling wine) and toast this unforgettable experience as you are punted through the waterways.

Travel Village Breakfast
* See the Bridge of Sighs, the Doge's Palace & St. Mark's Square
* See Venice's iconic canals & gondolas
* Venice walking tour Euro 11.00
* Gondola ride Euro 21.00

Day 17 - Venice to Vienna

Chill out on the coach as we make our way through the mighty Dolomites and cruise pass typically Austrian villages, complete with wooden chalets and green mountain fields.

Next stop is the cultural hub of Vienna. Tonight, there's a chance to experience Vienna's musical legacy with a Mozart and Strauss concert in one of the city's imperial palaces.

Hostel Breakfast
* Mozart & Strauss concert Euro 29.00

Day 18 - Vienna

Your Tour Manager starts the day by introducing the group to the city's historical heritage. There's the imperial grandeur of Schoenbrunn Palace, the elegantly ornate State Opera House and St. Stephen's Cathedral - a Gothic masterpiece. Cruise down Kaerntner Strasse, Vienna's main shopping spot and buy some traditional ceramics and materials for gifts back home.

There's free time to check out the magnificent squares and majestic palaces or the city's art galleries. Take a break in a coffee house like the locals do, chill out in Vienna's manicured gardens or wander along the Danube River.

Get schnaps savvy with a behind-the-scenes look into this local liqueuer's production in an optional excursion to the Old Vienna Schnaps Museum. Later, there's a chance for a traditional meal with the group in the Viennese countryside.

Hostel Breakfast
* See Schoenbrunn Palace, St. Stephen's Cathedral & the State Opera House
* Scenic drive along the historic Ring Road
* Old Vienna Schnaps Museum Euro 7.00
* Viennese Dinner Euro 29.50

Day 19 - Vienna to Prague

Roll through Bohemia to the UNESCO World Heritage town of Cesky Krumlov. The town is all about old-world charm, cute shops, cosy cafes and winding cobblestone lanes.

This afternoon, relax on the coach as we head to the capital of the Czech Republic, Prague.

Hostel Breakfast, Dinner
* Visit the medieval town of Cesky Krumlov

Day 20 - Prague

Prague is a beautiful and atmospheric city. It's also pretty compact, so it's best explored on foot. Get straight into Prague's historic heart with your Tour Manager. You'll walk together over the landmark Charles Bridge, through Hradcany Castle, the home of the original Bohemian Kings and to the Gothic St. Vitus Cathedral along the way.

Choose a lunch cruise on the Vltava River, which runs through the heart of Prague, and take in stunning views of the city from the water. The Czech capital has a really mixed past so look out for signs of the Holy Roman Empire, the Bohemian Empire, the Nazis and the Communists.

Free time means you can get deeper into Prague's Old Town in your own time. The city itself is a UNESCO World Heritage site, with a jumble of little lanes, alleys and courtyards. Slow the pace down and give yourself a chance to uncover its hidden treasures.

Spend some time in the picturesque Old Town Square, where historic buildings and churches surround cafes that spill out onto the pavement. With some world-famous Czech pilsner in hand, park yourself at a table, people-watch and try out some of the traditional local dumplings. This is also the spot to pick up some famous Bohemian glass, beads or garnet and amber jewellery

By night, Prague bursts with possibilities. Loaded with all types of music, from jazz bars and hip DJs to opera, there is something for everyone, so make the most of it with your friends.

Hostel Breakfast
* See Hradcany Castle, the Cathedral of St. Vitus, Charles Bridge and Wenceslas Square
* Visit the Old Town Square and see the Astronomical Clock
* Lunchtime cruise Euro 27.00
* Nuclear Bunker Tour Euro 18.00

Day 21 - Prague to Munich

This morning, remember one of history's darkest moments with a sobering stop at the Dachau concentration camp memorial. Learn more at the museum and walk through the remaining living quarters.

Afterwards we travel to the home of the world-famous Oktoberfest, Munich - a city that blends traditional Bavarian culture and modern lifestyle.

Explore the heart of Munich's old town with the crew, and head to Marienplatz. It's a central gathering spot famous for the Glockenspiel - a Gothic clock, complete with 32 dancing figures and 43 chiming bells.

Later why not give an optional bike tour a go and get off the beaten track and onto Munich's side streets with our Local Guide.

Hostel Breakfast
* Visit the Dachau concentration camp memorial
* See the Glockenspiel & Marienplatz
* City Bike Tour Euro 17.00

Day 22 - Munich

Use your free time to discover more of Munich. Give an optional bike tour a go and get off the beaten track and onto Munich's side streets with our Local Guide.

Otherwise head back to the old town and hunt around the little shops on the pedestrian-only lanes or for a change of scene, head to the university area. With shaded streets, buzzing pavement cafes and cute bookstores, it's a great way to spend a chilled-out afternoon.

Hostel Breakfast
* City Bike Tour Euro 17.00

Day 23 - Munich to Austrian Tyrol

We make our way into Austria today, for a taste of the action & adventure that the area is famous for.

On arrival you can opt for an adrenalin rush & get out on the water for a white water rafting adventure. Get a group of you & your buddies together & get into this fun activity - it's a must-do while you're here. Our professional guides will kit you out with everything you need (& give you all the instructions & safety gear you'll need for this awesome guided experience).

Later, it's on to Hopfgarten where you'll stay for the evening. You can also opt to get out for a scenic bike ride through the Austrian Alps for a look at the area on a different angle.

Later tonight, relax with your travel buddies at our travel partners very own Gasthof bar or maybe head into the village of Hopfgarten & meet some locals.

Special Stopover Breakfast, Dinner
* Special Stopover: Austrian Gasthof
* Whitewater rafting Euro 41.00
* Afternoon Bike Tour Euro 19.00
* Tandem paragliding Euro 120.00

Day 24 - Austrian Tyrol to Swiss Alps

This morning travel past the stony cliffs of Liechtenstein, into the capital, Vaduz, where you can grab some lunch and in enjoy it in the shadow of the Royal Family's 12th century castle.

Next stop: the jaw-droppingly beautiful alpine town of Lucerne. With covered wooden bridges, cobbled lanes and quaint buildings, Lucerne's centre is perfect to explore on foot. Also to stock up on lots of genuine Swiss chocolate! Your Tour Manager can give you pointers on where to pick up the best-priced watches Switzerland is so famous for.

Tonight, we head to the alpine heights of Lauterbrunnen and stay at Contiki's very own Swiss Chalet.

Travel Village Breakfast, Dinner
* Special Stopover: Swiss Chalet
* Visit the capital of Liechtenstein, Vaduz
* See the Wooden Chapel Bridge in Lucerne
* Scenic drive through the Alps

Day 25 - Swiss Alps

It's a change of pace amongst Switzerland's massive Alps. Take in the amazing views from your chalet window.

Opt to visit Jungfrau Mountain, head up the sheer slopes of this UNESCO World Heritage-listed site on a cog rail to Europe's highest railway station, and step out onto the "roof" of Europe for spine-tingling views.

Back at the chalet, make the most of the genuine underground 'Bomb Shelter' and party it up with friends at the bar there.

Special Stopover Breakfast, Dinner
* Special Stopover: Swiss Chalet
* Jungfrau mountain visit Euro 120.00

Day 26 - Swiss Alps to Rhine Valley

Over the border and into Germany, we head to the university town of Heidelberg. Wander around, grab a late lunch and check out its famous Baroque church.

The coach follows the Rhine River, weaving through valleys dotted with castles and vineyards.

Next stop - the pretty, old-world village of St. Goar, complete with fairy tale castle and even a free-hanging cuckoo clock! Learn about local know-how and get savvy on the craft of beer steins.

Then kick back with a glass of local wine and choose to find out more with the optional wine tasting in a candlelit underground cellar.

Hotel Breakfast, Dinner
* See Heidelberg's medieval castle
* See the Lorelei Rock
* Visit the riverside town St. Goar
* Learn how beer steins are crafted
* Wine tasting Euro 9.00

Day 27 - Rhine Valley to Amsterdam

Cruise into the countryside and bike around like the laid back locals, past working windmills, to the world-famous cheese village of Edam. In an intro into Dutch culture, see how clogs are made and try some of the famous Dutch Edam at a cheese farm.

Head into the buzzing capital of Amsterdam and check out the eye-opening Red Light District, where the creative and the wacky come together on narrow cobbled streets, 24/7.

Hotel Breakfast, Dinner
* See canals & a windmill on a countryside bike tour in Edam
* Visit a cheese farm & clog maker's house
* See Amsterdam's canals & gable houses by night

Day 28 - Amsterdam

There's free time to experience Amsterdam's coffee shops, museums and quirky, cool boutiques. Wander along the canals and pass gabled houses or experience Amsterdam's multi-ethnic cuisine. This cultural melting pot dishes up loads of affordable food.

With an optional evening canal cruise, there's a chance to toast your travels with the group, unwind with a few drinks and uncover Amsterdam at water level as you drift past the city lights.

For your last night on tour, treat yourself to a feast at a rice table dinner with the group in a popular restaurant. With this fun way to eat, you'll be served loads of dishes from colonial times.

Get some pointers from your Tour Manager, dive into Amsterdam's night action with your friends and finish up your travels with a night to remember.

Hotel Breakfast
* Canal bike tour Euro 13.00
* Canal cruise (1 hour) Euro 23.00
* Sea Palace Restaurant Euro 32.00

Day 29 - Depart Amsterdam

This morning after breakfast we transfer you to Schiphol Airport (estimated arrival 10:00am) where your tour ends. Or choose to take a complimentary transfer to central London & extend your stay.

 

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