Order of the Eastern Star: European Tour
July 10th - July 23rd, 2017
A private tour for members and friends of the Order of the Eastern Star, in conjunction with a conference held in Eisenach, Germany this coming summer...
DAY ONE: Monday, July 10th
Depart from your local airport for Europe (Frankfurt or Düsseldorf).
We will assist with all flight arrangements, to insure that the group arrives at similar times.
DAY TWO: Tuesday, July 11th
Arrive into Germany. Düsseldorf arrivals will be met and will head to meet those arriving into Frankfurt by train.
We'll then make the two-hour train ride from Frankfurt International Airport to Eisenach, and then head to our hotel for the next three nights.
We'll check into our hotel and freshen up, before meeting in the lobby to head out for a casual orientation stroll and an early group dinner. After an overnight flight, you'll be good and tired - and safely back to your hotel to rest.
DAY THREE: Wednesday, July 12th
Breakfast at the hotel, before we head to the train station and take a 30 minute ride into Erfurt. The capital of the German region of Thuringia, Erfurt will be the perfect start of our tour. It’s most notable as the place where Martin Luther studied and became a monk. Spared the brutal bombing raids of WWII and then preserved from modernization as part of Eastern Germany, Erfurt has a true ring of Medieval Germany. We'll visit the famous Merchant's Bridge, one of Europe's oldest synagogues, and visit a storied cathedral.
We'll head back to Eisenach in the afternoon for a private tour of Wartburg Castle - now a museum, preserving the story of Luther's translation of the Bible into German.
DAY FOUR: Thursday, July 13th
Breakfast at the hotel, before our OES members head into a day full of events with the conference at the Steigenburger Hotel.
Those not participating in the conference meetings will continue sight-seeing for the day with guided escort. You will have a list of options for the day, and we will head out to enjoy the consensus pick - while those who wish to enjoy a day in Eisenach can do so at their own pace.
DAY FIVE: Friday, July 14th
The conference completed, we'll now stretch our travel legs and head out for an exciting ring around the region...
We'll have an early morning checkout from the hotel before heading over to Dresden, Germany by rail. With no transfers, we'll take a high speed train into the heart of the city to visit the majestic Frauenkirche - and learn one of the most moving stories of forgiveness and compassion in how this 1,000 year old church was restored after its destruction in WWII.
We'll enjoy lunch in Dresden before heading back to the train station for a direct trip, without transfers, to Prague. Arriving mid afternoon, we'll check into our hotel rooms before heading out for an enjoyable orientation walk and group dinner.
DAY SIX: Saturday, July 15th
After breakfast, we'll enjoy a leisurely walk across the famed Charles Bridge and into the heart of the old city around Tyne Square. You'll then be treated to an informative open sedan tour of the city's various sights, which will educate you and prepare you for the free time ahead to enjoy and explore at your own pace. You'll be free for the rest of the afternoon to spend more time enjoying whatever strikes your fancy.
We'll meet back up at the hotel late in the afternoon and head out to enjoy a classical music concert surprise, before we enjoy a group dinner to discuss the day's delights and enjoy a mesmerizing evening stroll back to our hotel.
DAY SEVEN: Sunday, July 16th
Free day... Yours to fully enjoy and explore.
Options include the armory museum, the palace and St. Vitus Cathedral - including its amazing bell tower view over the entire city, the Jewish Synagogue, Tyne Church, the shops and markets of Old Town, the hand-carved and painted puppet shops, or simply find a sidewalk cafe to enjoy a beer and people watch.
One option will include a trip with your guide to learn about a famous and tragic bit of Czech history in WWII: the assassination of Hitler's favorite, Reinhard Heydrich. We'll visit the church and crypt where the men were surrounded and killed - and take a short trip out to see the grounds of Lidice, a village that had every male over the age of 16 executed and the women and children sent to death camps. Not a stone was left standing at this unforgettable site.
DAY EIGHT: Monday, July 17th
We'll enjoy a final breakfast at our hotel, before we taxi to the train station. Next stop: the beautiful Alpine jewel of Salzburg, Austria.
This will be our longest travel day on the trip as we take a scenic trip across the Czech countryside and into the Austrian city of Linz for a transfer and short ride to our final destination.
We'll be transported to our hotel, check into our rooms, and then head out into the old town for a relaxing walk among one of Europe's most beloved cities. We'll stroll through the main square and take in some majestic architecture, before heading up the famed walking street of shops, the Getreidegasse, and dining at a perfect spot.
DAY NINE: Tuesday, July 18th
Welcome to one of our very favorite destinations in all of Europe. A royal seat, an accessible and old world city center that is not overpopulated or industrialized, and a host of options to choose from.
We'll do a morning orientation tour, as always, so that everyone is completely comfortable getting around this quaint city, and head over to the Stiegl Brewery/Restaurant for a delicious lunch. Those who want to join can follow your illustrious guide on a beautiful hike along the Mönschberg, the rock formation that dominates the old part of the city. On the other side, we'll descend and make a stop at a favorite beer hall in all of Europe.
Enjoy the afternoon visiting the many cathedrals, the old cemetery and catacombs, the famous Nonnberg Abbey where Maria von Trapp stayed, or shop to your heart's content. It's all just steps away...
DAY TEN: Wednesday, July 19th
Our final day in the Alps...
We'll offer one guided tour, while giving you the option of heading out on your own to do a "Sound of Music" tour or simply continue enjoying Salzburg.
Our tour will take us into the famed city of Berchtesgaden, home to Germany's only Alpine National Park. We'll cover a bit of WWII history, stopping by the ruins of Hitler's house, the Berghof, before taking a bus and then elevator up through solid rock to behold the view from the well known "Eagle's Nest." That afternoon, we'll head over to the Königssee and take a 40 minute electric boat tour out onto a crystal clear lake, ringed by mountains, and stop at the royal hunting lodge and chapel for a beer or a delicious smoked lake trout. Soak up the sun and scenery, before we head back to the main dock by boat and head back to Salzburg.
We'll enjoy a group meal together and compare notes on the days adventures...
DAY ELEVEN: Thursday, July 20th
After morning breakfast, we will be transported over to the train station for a direct line to Munich, Germany.
Capital of Bavaria, Munich was rebuilt after many deadly WWII bombing raids with much of the old style. We'll check our bags, go on another orientation walk to get our bearings, and head to a splendid German restaurant for a proper meal.
We'll do a little tour of some of the best shops the city has to offer and make a few stops at some of the city's most beautiful cathedrals. Once we are done, you'll be guided back to the hotel - or turned loose to explore and enjoy more on your own.
DAY TWELVE: Friday, July 21st
Free day in Munich...
Choose from a host of activities:
Spend several hours in one of the best museums on the planet, the Deutsches Museum, where they have incredible exhibits on everything from shipping to mining to music to flight.
Sign up for a day trip to Neuschwanstein Castle, the fairy tale building upon which Walt Disney modeled his own.
Take a trip with your guide over to tour the infamous Dachau concentration camp.
Continue shopping and take time to sit at a sidewalk cafe and enjoy the easy pace of Bavarian life.
We'll meet back at the hotel in the early part of the evening for a short walk for a great dinner.
DAY THIRTEEN: Saturday, July 22nd
Our final, full day in Europe!
After breakfast, we'll check out of our hotel, be transported to the train station, and take a direct train to Stuttgart, Germany.
We'll check into our downtown hotel, head out for lunch, and enjoy some sight-seeing and free time.
That evening, we'll link up for one final meal as a group, reflect upon all we've done, and head to our rooms for rest. We'll be departing bright and early the following morning...
DAY FOURTEEN: Sunday, July 23rd
We will depart the hotel for the train station, and take the train north to Frankfurt and/or Düsseldorf, arriving at the airport in plenty of time for your flight home.
Tour cost: $3,750
Price includes the following:
-lodgings (3 and 4 star quality)
-breakfasts and listed meals
-all listed group activities (we will help you arrange any optional tours you add)
-all ground transportation
-24 hour guide/translator/assistant
With questions or interest, please contact us!