Musical Landscapes - Highlights of Austria and Germany
August 25 - September 4, 2020
9 Nights $3390.00 Per Person
Come along with Your Man in Europe on a festive journey to some of the world’s most spectacular places. We’ll start in fabulous Vienna with its magnificent Baroque architecture, imperial palaces, and vibrant music scene. The musical and artistic heritage of “The City of Music” never fails to captivate and inspire visitors. We’ll continue by train to Salzburg, truly one of the jewels of Austria, where we will hear a concert in the castle where young Mozart debuted many of his most beloved works, and visit many of the most familiar filming locations for “The Sound of Music”. From there we travel to Hallstatt, celebrated as one of the most beautiful places on earth! This fairy-tale village hugs a spectacular alpine lake surrounded by towering mountains. We finish this breathtaking journey in Munich, Germany, where we’ll experience the very best of this iconic city just before the beginning of its annual Bacchanalia known as “Oktoberfest”; but we’ll still get the full flavor of this fun city. Don’t miss this entertaining and magically musical travel adventure!
August 25, Tuesday – Depart on flights into Vienna, Austria to arrive by 11:00 AM on Wednesday, August 26th.
August 26, Wednesday – Tour guests arrive in Vienna by 11:00 AM. We will assemble our group at the International Arrivals gate before traveling into the city. Once we check into our hotel in the perfect location, we’ll have a nice lunch together followed by an introductory tour of the old central city to familiarize everyone with its incredible attractions. Baroque streetscapes and imperial palaces set the stage for Vienna's artistic and musical masterpieces alongside its fun coffee-house culture, vibrant epicurean venues, and sophisticated design scene.
There will be some afternoon free time before we get together again for a wonderful “Welcome to Vienna” dinner to enjoy one of the city’s great culinary contributions (no, not Vienna sausages!): Wienerschnitzel, a delectable thin-sliced veal cutlet, breaded and cooked to golden perfection. It’s one of the national dishes of Austria! Afterward we’ll enjoy another “must-do”: a fabulous music concert with VIP seating in a historic performance hall. By the end of this busy day everyone will be looking forward to a good night’s sleep.
August 27, Thursday – After a relaxing breakfast at our hotel we’ll set out for an amazing experience: All over the world, the Spanish Riding School and its Lipizzaner stallions are famous and loved – but not everyone is familiar with the enormous preparation required before the famous performances. We’ll get an insider’s view of what actually happens in training the young stallions. The Morning training session offers insight into the training of the Lipizzaners and their riders. Accompanied by classical Viennese music, the riders and their horses do a variety of exercises that refine and perfect every move. The Spanish Riding School in Vienna is the only institution in the world which has practiced for over 430 years and continues to cultivate classical equestrian training in the Renaissance tradition.
After our exhibition and tour, we’ll return to the central city where everyone can a free afternoon and evening. Everyone can choose from among Vienna’s many incredible attractions. Our central location makes getting to the best venues fast and easy. Vienna's imperial grandeur is the legacy of the powerful Habsburg monarchy. Their home for more than six centuries, the Hofburg Palace complex, incorporates the Burgkapelle (Imperial Chapel), along with a trove of museums, including the chandeliered Kaiserappartements (Imperial Apartments). Other immense palaces include the baroque Schloss Belvedere and the Habsburgs' 1441-room summer residence.
Art lovers should consider visiting one of the Habsburgs' most dazzling palaces: the Kunsthistorisches Museum, which houses the impressive imperial art collection. Have lunch and dinner on your own and take advantage of Vienna’s lively restaurant scene. The Viennese appreciation of the finer things in life extends to its opulent coffee-house 'living rooms' serving spectacular cakes; its beloved pub-like Beisln - dishing up hearty portions of Wienerschnitzel, tafelspitz (prime boiled beef) and goulash; elegant restaurants; and its fine Austrian wines served in vaulted vinothek (wine bar) cellars.
August 28, Friday – After a delicious breakfast we must bid farewell to enchanting Vienna. We’ll board our train to the next incredible destination: Salzburg. Our stylish hotel is located in the heart of the town – no more than a leisurely 10 to 15-minute walk to the most important landmarks. This picturesque old town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. After checking in and getting settled we’ll go out for a nice lunch together before starting a great walking tour of this most fascinating place. Our tour will include some of the most familiar filming locations for the beloved film “The Sound of Music”. Each setting is, in itself, a spectacular scene, movie or no movie! We’ll take in the most iconic highlights including visiting the inspiring Salzburg Dom, where Mozart was baptized. In the later afternoon we’ll have some free time to relax or just stroll around this fantastic city.
In the evening we’ll meet again to go to one of the most memorable musical experiences ever: a fabulous dinner and Mozart concert in the awesome Hohensalzburg Fortress which towers over the city. We’ll hear a special concert of Mozart selections in the very room where the composer first performed so many of his works for his patron, Count Leopold Anton von Firmian, the ruling Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg.
Born in 1756, the musical genius showed astounding ability from his earliest childhood. Already a master on keyboard and violin, he began composing from the age four, and frequently performed before European royalty. At 17, Mozart was engaged as a musician in the Salzburg court; but after years in the position grew restless and, in 1781 his conflicts with the Archbishop finally resulted in his leaving Salzburg in search of a better position. This will be an evening never to be forgotten.
August 29, Saturday – This morning everyone can come down to breakfast at any time. The morning will be free time until about 10:30; and then guests may choose between two activities: either visit the world-famous Stiegl Brewery for a tour and a generous tasting experience. You might say the Stiegl folks are experienced brew-masters, as the brewery opened in 1492!; OR go to the wonderful Museum of Modern Art, atop Mönchsberg mountain, with our own art expert as a guide. See works by Gustav Klimpt and many other modern masters. Both venues offer splendid views of the city and excellent places for a very nice lunch together.
After lunch there’ll be more free time; and don’t worry, there are plenty of choices for an afternoon in Salzburg. Do some shopping on the city’s most visited shopping street, Getreidegasse with its high and narrow houses and romantic courtyards. Another highlight is Mirabell Palace with its splendid gardens built by the baroque master builder Lukas von Hildebrandt. It’s also the location of the gazebo made famous in “The Sound of Music”. Or take the funicular train back up to ‘conquer’ 900-year-old Hohensalzburg Fortress. Visit the Princely Residence, a magnificent early baroque edifice with splendid halls and a gallery featuring European paintings dating between the 16th and 19th century. Then enjoy an evening and cozy dinner on your own in old Salzburg.
August 30, Sunday – Everyone is invited to attend Sunday services or just sleep in and have a late breakfast before it’s time to board our train for the next fantastic destination; Hallstatt. It’s a gloriously scenic train ride through the mountains of Austria to one of the most beautiful spots on earth. Every list of the “100 places to see before you die” includes Hallstatt. We’ll arrive at a tiny lakeside station and then take a boat to glide across the pristine water to one of the most charming places you’ve ever seen. Our family-owned B&B is in the perfect location. Explore the village, and have lunch by the lake on your own. Rent a boat to cruise on the placid lake, or sit on a bench by the water and watch the world go by. This is the perfect place just to BE.
In the evening we’ll meet back for a wonderful dinner together in the dining room of our guesthouse.
August 31, Monday – After a hearty country breakfast we’re off on a fine adventure. We’ll take a ride on the breathtaking cable car up to the Skywalk, a “World Heritage View” lookout platform that seemingly juts out into nothingness, overlooking the rooftops of Hallstatt from 1000 feet above! It’s the perfect place to take in the panoramic view of the lake and surrounding mountains. From there we’ll continue on to the intriguing salt mines for an exciting tour. Incredibly, salt mining in Hallstatt has been going on for 7,000 years! Salt was so vital to life before modern refrigeration, we often take it for granted today; but it is what put Hallstatt on the map. While the tiny village may be quite sleepy today, Hallstatt’s Celtic influence on early Europe - thanks to “white gold” (salt) - led to an entire period of the Iron Age being known as the Hallstatt Era. Walk through the chambers of salt, and even ride down a slide once used to move huge blocks of salt.
After returning to the village enjoy lunch on your own and a free afternoon in enchanting Hallstatt. Do a little shopping for gifts for those at home, or sip a glass of wine at a charming café. Dinner will be on your own this evening.
September 1, Tuesday – We’ll enjoy one last hearty breakfast in Hallstatt before taking the boat across the lake to meet our train to marvelous Munich, Germany. The rail journey offers delightful views of the southern Alps. During the epic ride we’ll have a train picnic featuring delicious local specialties. In the afternoon we’ll arrive in Munich, and head straight for our ideally-located hotel in the center of the old town. After settling in we’ll go on a fascinating walking tour to get familiar with this utterly fascinating German city.
In the evening we’ll head for one of Munich’s iconic spots: the famous Hofbräuhaus. This historic beer hall is the place for a year-round Oktoberfest! Join in on the fun, great German food, Oompah music, and sing-alongs as you experience this historic establishment. There’s nothing else like it! After a festive evening we’ll return to our comfy hotel very nearby.
September 2, Wednesday – After a traditional German breakfast at our lovely hotel everyone can enjoy a free morning to explore the nearby attractions. Head for Marienplatz, an easy walk from our hotel. Dating back to the 12th century, Marienplatz was founded by Henry the Lion, Duke of Bavaria. For centuries it has been home to medieval markets, celebrations, and tournaments. The name of the square was changed from Schrannen to Marienplatz to plead with the Virgin Mary to protect the town from a cholera epidemic in 1638. It remained a market place until 1807 when the market moved to Viktualienmarkt. This “new” market is still a thriving public marketplace, and a must-see spot during your explorations. For the 1972 Munich Olympics the square and adjoining blocks around it became a pedestrian area; and today remains the city’s center of action - a popular gathering place for locals and tourists alike. For lunch on your own today stop in at one of the many vendors in the market area, and eat in one of the outdoor dining gardens.
In the afternoon we’ll regroup to go and visit the fabulous Alte Pinakothek, one of the jewels of Munich, and among Europe’s most impressive art museums. The gallery, largely rebuilt after World War II, contains priceless artwork that had been spirited away prior to the tragic bombing of the city. Compared to some of the best art museums in the world, Munich’s Alte Pinakothek feels quiet, open, and uncrowded; yet it houses some of the very best works by the greatest painters, including Albrecht Dürer, Gustav Klimt, Leonardo Da Vinci, Van Gogh, Manet, and Cézanne. We’ll have our own knowledgeable guide for our visit there.
In the late afternoon we’ll return to our hotel for a free evening. By now everyone will have spotted a favorite place for a nice dinner on your own.
September 3, Thursday – After a delicious breakfast everyone will have two choices for our included activities. For those interested in history and splendid palaces choose to visit the fantastic Residenz, one of the largest and most opulent palaces in the world. Along with the Treasury, a visit to this amazing palace will be remembered for its breathtaking exhibit of furniture, tapestries and displays of the gorgeous crown jewels, plus a huge collection of gold and silver artefacts. Begun in1385 as a castle, the Munich Residenz was transformed by the rulers over the centuries into a magnificent palace and spectacular gardens. It served as the seat of government and residence of the Bavarian dukes, electors, and kings from 1508 to 1918.
The rooms and art collections span a period that begins with the Renaissance, and extends via the early Baroque and Rococo epochs to Neoclassicism. The building and its contents bear witness to the discriminating taste and the political ambition of the Wittelsbach dynasty.
After being partially destroyed during World War II, the palace has been painstakingly restored to its original majesty. It is considered a “must see” in Munich. Guests on this tour will enjoy lunch together at a lovely café very near the palace.
OR: For car lovers, Munich offers one of the best automobile experiences in the world: BMW Welt. If magnificent palaces aren’t your thing, choose to visit this virtual cathedral of cars. This glass-and-steel, double-cone tornado spiraling down from a dark cloud the size of an aircraft carrier holds BMW Welt, truly a car lover’s dream. Besides the BMW factory itself, we’ll also see the wonderful museum where the history of BMW is made fun for everyone. It offers a wonderful range of vehicles over the years plus displays of engines and technology, taking you through the whole legacy of BMW and how the cars have evolved. Guests will even get a sneak peek into what the future might hold. We’ll have a nice lunch together in the beautiful café in the museum.
After returning to the central old town everyone will have a free afternoon to see a favorite attraction we haven’t visited, some last-minute shopping, or just a fun afternoon of people-watching and relaxing in this intriguing city.
We’ll gather once more in the evening for a lovely “Farewell to Munich” dinner together in a delightful restaurant near our hotel.
September 4, Friday – After breakfast at our hotel guest will be assisted with transportation to the Munich airport for flights returning to the USA or other destinations.
What’s in store for us?
This tour is custom-planned for a small group of no more than 10 guests. Even if you are a seasoned traveler, you have never experienced Austria and Germany like this. We’re sure the magic will captivate you. You’ll be part of a magical adventure - complete with music, gourmet picnics, and surprises that will delight you at every turn.
This is not a “Big Bus Tour”. There will be no wake-up calls at 5 AM to herd onto the buses. Our travelers will have a friendly, extremely knowledgeable guide for the entire trip – not just a bus driver and hum-drum contracted tour guide. We do our best to set the mood, to weave a spell, and to make yours a total experience. Hotels and most restaurants on the entire tour have been selected for their very specific location or high level of “atmosphere”. The small group size allows us to personalize the experience in a way large groups simply cannot do. We make it easy, comfortable and stress-free. No guest has to worry about the details of where we are going next. You will feel as if you are not a tourist, but a guest of your European friends.
This is a complete tour; and the prices are not increased during the trip through unexpected charges for “extra” tours and arrangements you must handle on your own. If there will be any optional tours or activities not included in the cost everyone will be advised well before signing up for the tour. Most meals are included, and those that are not included are detailed in the itinerary.
Your Tour Guide: Larry Ivy is the Tour Coordinator and guide for Your Man in Europe, and a long-time veteran of European travel and unique private tour-leading. Larry wants just one thing: for you to have “the best time of your life”!
Complete Prices for the August 25 - September 4, 2020 Tour
$3390.00 Per Person
*All prices are based on Double Occupancy. Single supplement is an additional $690.
A $500 deposit holds your place on the tour(s). Reservations and deposits for this fantastic opportunity should be made as early as possible, but not later than April 15, 2020. The final balance is due by July 15, 2020. Make checks payable to “Your Man in Europe”. Guests are invited to use our no-interest flexible payment plan.
Tour Includes: Nine (9) nights of overnight accommodation (based on double occupancy) in very specially selected hotels and B&Bs, all nine (9) breakfasts, five (5) lunches, and five (5) dinners; ground transportation with a private driver (except September 4th airport transfers); and First Class rail travel (where available), admissions to all attractions described in the tour itinerary, knowledgeable guide services, and standard gratuities. There will be no additional charges for the tours and events specifically included by Your Man in Europe. There may be additional charges for tours and activities not included in the detailed itinerary. These are optional additions.
Not Included: Airfare to Vienna and returning from Munich, optional travel insurance, extra beverages (meals will include one beverage and will be budgeted accordingly); a la cart or premium menu selections beyond the established meal allowances; between meal snacks; gratuities for extra services such as baggage porters, or for superior service (normal gratuities are included in the trip cost); souvenirs; and privately arranged activities.
Also: All overnight accommodations, as well as railroad and minibus travel will be NO-SMOKING.
This tour is strictly limited to a maximum of 10 guests travelling together
The minimum group size is 6 – The tour will be canceled with fewer than 6 guests.