8 Day Luxury European Breakaway
A sensational 8 Day Trip designed to capture the very essence of Europe. Travel from the canals of Amsterdam to the Swiss Alps and elegant boulevards of Paris.
Our adventure map
Day by day
First Day Depart from London by Eurostar for Brussels
After a warm welcome from your Tour Director, transfer to London's St. Pancras Station to board the high-speed Eurostar. Once you board the train, sit back and relax, while you are whisked through the historic Channel Tunnel to Brussels in just over 2 hours! Alternatively, join at the Brussels hotel. This afternoon, walk with your Tour Director through the Grand Place, voted Europe's most beautiful square, lined with gilded buildings from the late 17th century and the Gothic Town Hall. Stroll on through the back streets to the capital's most celebrated water feature, the cheeky Mannekin Pis statue. Later, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception and an opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.
Second Day Drive through the Dutch Countryside to Amsterdam
Leave Brussels and drive north into the Netherlands. Continue through pleasant Dutch countryside to lively Amsterdam, the ‘City of Canals'. Drive across Dam Square, the heart of the city, past the Royal Palace and Mint Tower. Round off the day with a taste of glamour as you visit one of the great diamond-houses whose industry dates back to the 16th century, for a demonstration of diamond cutting and polishing - a chance to wear a fortune in diamonds and dream!
Third Day Glide past the Castles of the Rhine Valley to Heidelberg
Leave Amsterdam today, en route for Germany. Pass the border town of Arnhem, renowned for its “Bridge Too Far”. Cross the extensive Ruhr Basin and head for the romantic Rhine Gorge. From the wine village of Boppard, enjoy a delightful river cruise past hilltop castles, sleepy riverside towns and leafy terraced vineyards. Continue on to Heidelberg.
Fourth Day Through the Black Forest to Lucerne
Head for the ancient city of Freiburg, before climbing into the heart of the Black Forest, home of the cuckoo clock industry. Learn about their origins from a master carver and see how these clocks are made. Continue into Switzerland to view the thundering Rhine Falls. Drive on to lakeside Lucerne where there's time to shop for chocolate or that special timepiece.
Fifth Day its onto Lucerne's Lions and Dragons
In the morning, embark upon a highlight trip by the steepest cogwheel railway in the world and cable car to the summit of Mount Pilatus. In medieval times, it was believed that dragons lived in these rugged clefts, but now the only amazing sights to see are over the snow-capped Jungfrau and Eiger peaks. Back in Lucerne, visit the stirring Lion Monument, dedicated to the Swiss guards who died defending the King of France. During your free time, maybe take a stroll across the covered Chapel Bridge to the baroque Jesuit church. Perhaps hire a bicycle and enjoy a pleasant ride beside the lake. For dinner this evening, choose your own style of cuisine and ambience from a fine selection of local restaurants.
Sixth Day On to Paris for a ‘Diner de Célébration’
Leaving the Alpine region, cross the Rhine at Basel and continue into France. Travel through the leafy vineyards of Burgundy and past the forests of Fontainebleau to arrive in the glittering French capital of Paris. Tonight, head for the Latin Quarter, the lively area on the Left Bank that's been the centre of student life and the haunt of writers and poets for centuries. Enjoy a ‘Diner de Célébration' served with wine in a Parisian bistro, oozing at the seams with art-nouveau ambience.
Seventh Day Explore Paris ‘City of Light’
This morning's sightseeing with a Parisian expert takes you by the Île de la Cité to view Notre Dame Cathedral with its famous tale of Quasimodo. Then around the imposing façades of the Louvre and along the banks of the Seine with its many beautiful bridges. See the obelisk in the centre of the Place de la Concorde and drive along the grand Champs Elysées to the Arc de Triomphe. Next, venture into the 'Métro de Paris' to admire its art nouveau inspired architecture and enjoy a short journey through the Paris metropolitan area aboard its rapid transit system. Ascend to the viewing platforms of the Eiffel Tower for spectacular views of the city. The rest of the day is at leisure for a shopping spree in the grand department stores or the elegant designer boutiques. By night, why not try one of the world famous cabaret shows, for an evening of excitement and glamour?
Eighth Day Au revoir Paris
Transfers arrive Charles de Gaulle Airport at 8am and 10am hours.
Relax on the smooth high-speed Eurostar train from London via the historic Channel Tunnel to Brussels
Learn how 400 years of craftsmanship and tradition have perfected the art of diamond-polishing in Amsterdam.
Cruise beneath the semi-ruined castles and terraced vineyards. Sleepy villages slip by as you saunter upstream to the Loreley Rock in Rhine Valley.
Watch skilled artisans at work, learn the history and ancient techniques of clock making in Black Forest.
A spectacular journey by cable car and cogwheel railway to the summit for expansive mountain views over Lake Lucerne.
Enjoy a delightful journey on the 'Métro de Paris'. The Eiffel Tower draws some 7 million visitors annually, but your tickets are reserved in advance. Skip the queues and ride the elevator to the viewing platforms, for breathtaking panoramas over the city.
You are offered a selection of restaurants on your Dine Around evening in Lucerne. Choose your own ambience, cuisine and drinks for an intimate culinary experience.
Rendezvous with your friends at a typical French bistro for a little wine and a rousing Celebration Dinner. Bon Appétit!
Welcome Reception, 7 Buffet Breakfasts, 1 Dine-Around and 1 Celebration Dinner.
Highlight Hotels and Locations
The 4-star superior Crowne Plaza provides stylish accommodation, just a 5-minute walk from the historic Old Town Heidelberg.
A premium four-star hotel, the Marriott Rive Gauche Hotel in Paris is conveniently located by the Latin Quarter and Saint-Germain-des-Pres.
Dutch Bulbfields, Holland's bulb district (Bollenstreek) is only a short drive from Amsterdam and a seasonal delight. In the spring months, millions of Dutch tulip, hyacinth and daffodil bulbs erupt into a riot of colour from their orderly rows. A must for gardeners, photographers or anyone with a floral fascination. (Only available in season).
Dutch Dinner and Sailor`s Quarter, Dine in a beautiful historic restaurant which offers a wide selection of delicious food and drink. Amsterdam is famous for its liberal principles and attitudes, so after dinner, take a guided walk through one of the city's tourist hot spots - the vibrant 'Sailors Quarter', crammed with around 300 "red-light windows".
Heidelberg Castle, Visit the symbol of German Romanticism. The grand ruins of Heidelberg Castle rise up on a rocky hilltop offering spectacular views over the old town and River Neckar. A local expert shows you the garden terraces, ruined castle defences and inner courtyard with its Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque facades.
Lake Lucerne Happy Hour Cruise, Widely considered to be the loveliest of the mountain lakes, much of the shoreline of Lake Lucerne can only be fully appreciated from the water. Admire the spectacular homes of the fortunate few, privileged to live on its scenic shores, as we cruise gently by. Two drinks will be served during the trip.
Carriages and Countryside, A chance to meet the Swiss, as local farmers take us on a delightful countryside tour in horse-drawn carriages. Enjoy stunning scenery as we trot around a typical rural community, en route to a local farm where local drinks and snacks will be served.
Swiss Evening, There's nothing better than convening with friends around a pot of bubbling fondue with a glass of chilled white wine and having a good yodel! Join us for a tasty Swiss meal in a typical restaurant. While you dine, enjoy a lively folklore show of flag throwing, yodelling, Alpenhorn blowing and other great Swiss entertainment.
Seine Cruise and Illuminations, The City of Light really lives up to its name when the monuments, buildings and bridges are lit up in all their glory. First a specially designed sightseeing boat takes us for an unforgettable cruise along the Seine and beneath famous bridges to appreciate the Left and Right Banks and the Islands de la Cite & St Louis. Now enjoy an illuminations tour, when the rubies & diamonds of the Champs Élysées and the Eiffel Tower are at their magnificent best.
Louvre, Notre Dame and Latin Quarter, Visit one of the world's best known art collections at the Louvre Museum. A specialist art historian guides you through the galleries to see the Venus de Milo, Winged Victory, Mona Lisa and more. Then tour Notre Dame Cathedral, famously protected by its roof-top gargoyles, who have witnessed the full arc of Parisian history. Finish with a stroll through the lively streets of the Latin Quarter, filled with bookshops, cafes and restaurants, long associated with philosophers, poets and Bohemian way of life.
Moulin Rouge, Why not enjoy an evening of excitement and glamour and a glass of champagne at a dazzling French cabaret show? Depending on availability it might be dinner with wine and cabaret at the world famous Moulin Rouge – the original Parisian cabaret – immortalized by the award winning film!
Alternatively, enjoy dinner with wine at Nouvelle Eve, one of the most prestigious cabarets in town. Both venues guarantee a fabulous evening of exciting acts, stunning tableaux and wonderful entertainment.
Where you stay
All hotels included in your tour package are hand-picked, of an outstanding standard and far better value than if booked individually. Our valued travel partners who organise these tours also own the Red Carnation Hotel Group and where possible Red Carnation Hotels are used and please see our link for further details.
Guarantees, Bonds and Awards
- This tour is run by our outstanding travel partners who are multi-award winning Globe Best Tour operator in the world 2013, 2014 and 2015.
- Tours are fully bonded, protected and guaranteed and you pay the operator directly when booking.
- ABTA, IATA and ATOL protected
- Part of the Trade Right Foundation
Best prices, more information and booking
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