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1 / 67

Germany, Switzerland & Austria

14 days
These countries share a language, but their appeals are varied. Discover delightfully distinct style and substance in each destination, from the Gothic spires of Heidelberg to the Art Nouveau elegance of Vienna. Swiss mountains and the Bavarian forest, German beer and Austrian wine—this tantalizing trio has something for everyone.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Maximum tour group size: 35 travelers

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Your tour includes

  • 12 nights in handpicked hotels

  • Breakfast daily, 6 three-course dinners with beer or wine

  • Multilingual Tour Director

  • Private deluxe motor coach

  • Guided sightseeing and select entrance fees

Overnight Flight 1 night

Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Frankfurt today.

Heidelberg Region 2 nights Hotel info

Day 2: Arrival in the Heidelberg Region via Frankfurt

Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to Germany! After arriving in Frankfurt, transfer to the Heidelberg Region to meet your fellow travelers at tonight’s welcome dinner.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Heidelberg

Included meals: Breakfast

Immerse yourself in the romantic cityscapes and Baroque architecture of Heidelberg on a guided tour.

• Take a funicular ride to the city’s rose-colored hilltop castle

• Explore the grounds of the oldest university in Germany 

• Wander through Heidelberg’s elegant market square

Enjoy a free afternoon in Heidelberg or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Castle & Gardens of Schwetzingen $39*pp Details

Travel to Schwetzingen Castle and its UNESCO-recognized gardens. A castle guide will lead you through the greenery. Spanning 178 acres, the spacious and ornate gardens welcome hundreds of thousands of visitors each year, and feature a unique combination of French and English landscaping styles. As you embark on your guided exploration of the exquisitely maintained gardens, you’ll learn what daily life in the castle was like. Before leaving, enjoy some free time to explore the castle grounds on your own. Please note: The castle gardens are closed from October 14 through March 25.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $49)

Lucerne 2 nights Hotel info

Day 4: Lucerne via Rhine Falls & Black Forest

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

On the way to Switzerland, journey to thundering Rhine Falls and through the Black Forest, the setting for many of the Grimm brothers’ fairy tales.

Day 5: Sightseeing tour of Lucerne

Included meals: Breakfast

Get an up-close look at Lucerne, Switzerland’s idyllic Alpine town. 

• Stroll down narrow streets and across the medieval Kapellbrücke bridge

• Pass the hand-painted facades along the cobbled streets of the Old Town

• View the captivating Löwendenkmal, or Lion Monument

Enjoy a free afternoon in Lucerne or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Mount Pilatus $109*pp Details

This scenic excursion begins with a cruise on Lake Lucerne. After docking, ascend 7,000-foot Mount Pilatus on the world’s steepest cogwheel railway. Legend holds that the mountain was named for Pontius Pilate, blown here by the devil after the Crucifixion. From the peak, the views of the Alps are stunning; on a clear day, you can see for 200 miles. Toward the end of your trip, you’ll return to the base of the mountain via gondola. Please note: The cruise and cogwheel railway only run from mid-May through October. During the winter months, this excursion includes the cable car ride only. If the cogwheel railway is unavailable, you’ll enjoy lunch on the mountain.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $119)

Innsbruck 1 night Hotel info

Day 6: Innsbruck via Liechtenstein

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Travel into Liechtenstein, a tiny Alpine principality dating back to the Holy Roman Empire, and continue on toward the wintertime wonderland of Innsbruck, where you’ll enjoy a guided walking tour.

• Visit Liechtenstein’s capital, Vaduz, and pass the royal family’s hilltop castle, still in use as a royal residence

• Arrive in Innsbruck, site of two winter Olympic Games

• See the famed Golden Roof and the City Tower in Innsbruck’s historic Old Town

• Pass the Hofburg, a former Hapsburg Imperial Palace, and walk into its cobblestoned courtyard

• Enter the Baroque Cathedral of St. James

Munich 2 nights Hotel info

Day 7: Munich via Neuschwanstein

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Travel through the mountains of Bavaria en route to Munich, stopping for a guided tour of Neuschwanstein, the fairytale retreat of “Mad” King Ludwig.

• Step inside Neuschwanstein Castle

• Take time to explore its stalactite grotto, artifacts and murals

Day 8: Sightseeing tour of Munich

Included meals: Breakfast

Meet your local guide for a panoramic tour of Bavaria’s capital city. 

• Travel past the Olympic Stadium and fashionable Schwabing district 

• View the Residenz, once home to the Wittlesbach dukes of Bavaria

• Enter the Nymphenburg Palace, the Baroque home to past Bavarian royalty

• Explore Marienplatz, Munich’s medieval heart, and see the famed Glockenspiel

Enjoy a free afternoon in Munich or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Dachau $25*pp Details

Once a typical German town, Dachau served as the first Nazi concentration camp during World War II. Visit this somber site, which has since been transformed into a Holocaust memorial museum that serves as a testament to the strength of the human spirit. An audio guide will provide the narrative for your viewing of Dachau’s poignant exhibits, which are echoed by the memorials to the victims that adorn the grounds.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $35)

Salzburg 2 nights Hotel info

Day 9: Sightseeing tour of Salzburg

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Head to Salzburg, a city famed for its churches and musical history, where a local guide leads you on a walking tour of the Old Town.

• View the university and the churchyard of St. Peter

• See the Kapitelplatz, Residenzplatz and Alter Markt, in the city’s Old Town

• Enter Salzburg Cathedral and the home where Mozart was born 

• Pass through scenery from the beloved film “The Sound of Music”

• End your tour in the elegant Mirabell Palace Gardens

Day 10: Free day in Salzburg

Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a full free day in Salzburg or add excursions.

Optional Excursion - Eagle's Nest & Salt Mines $105*pp Details

Drive through the Bavarian Alps to the mountain village of Berchtesgaden, where you’ll tour the 450-year-old salt mines that brought wealth to Bavaria and Salzburg. Continue to Obersalzberg, where a scenic bus ride along steep gorges offers gorgeous views of the snow-capped Alps. Here, you’ll take a gilded elevator up to the Eagle’s Nest, an Alpine retreat built for Adolf Hitler’s 50th birthday. Please note: The elevation of the Eagle’s Nest is approximately 5,500 feet, which may not be advisable for travelers with heart/lung problems or other altitude-related limitations. This excursion is seasonal from mid-May through late October.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $115)

Optional Excursion - Mozart Concert & Dinner $109*pp Details

Step inside the 1,200-year-old St. Peter Stiftskeller, the oldest restaurant in Europe located within St. Peter’s Abbey, for an evening of fine dining and Mozart. Mozart composed over 600 works in his short life, and tonight, you’ll hear his masterpieces accompanied by opera singing as you sample local delicacies. Let the music carry you late into the night.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $119)

Vienna 3 nights Hotel info

Day 11: Vienna via Melk Abbey

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Stop in Melk for a guided tour of the town’s Baroque abbey, then continue your drive through the Austrian countryside to Vienna.

Day 12: Sightseeing tour of Vienna

Included meals: Breakfast

Get transported back to the Age of Empires on a guided tour of Vienna. 

• Visit Schönbrunn Palace, the Rococo Hapsburg home with impressive gardens

• Travel down the Ringstrasse to the Parliament building and the Vienna State Opera 

• See the grand Hofburg Palace, the Hapsburg’s preferred winter residence

Enjoy a free evening in Vienna or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Traditional Viennese Heurigen Evening $99*pp Details

After a brief drive, your first stop is Vienna’s Prater Ferris Wheel. Take a breezy ride to the top, which offers a one-of-a-kind view of the city. Next, continue to the picturesque village of Grinzing. At a local restaurant, you’ll indulge in a festive night of music, food and entertainment. Dinner will feature dishes typical of traditional Austrian Heurigens, or wine taverns. During your meal, you’ll have the chance to try some of the tavern’s own locally made wine—the perfect addition to your cozy Old-World setting.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $109)

Day 13: Free day in Vienna

Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a free day in Vienna or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Bratislava $89*pp Details

Walk through Bratislava’s Old Town on a guided tour of the Slovakian capital. Stroll along cobblestone streets in the shadow of Brastislavsky Hrad, the hilltop 18th-century castle overlooking the Old Town. Then, tour the famous Hall of Mirrors inside the pink Primates’ Palace, where Napoleon and the Austrian emperor signed the Peace of Pressburg of 1805. Lunch is included. Please note: Depending on the day of the week, you may visit St. Martin’s Cathedral instead of the palace.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $99)

Day 14: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or continue on to Budapest.

Add Budapest $349 pp

Please note: Extension is not available on all departure dates.

Truly a tale of two cities, Budapest is a merger of Buda and Pest, two towns separated by the river Danube. Now known as the Pearl of the Danube, Budapest is a peaceful yet progressive metropolis, offering plenty of shopping, as well as specialty Hungarian foods and wines.

Budapest 2 nights Hotel info

Day 14: Sightseeing tour of Budapest

Included meals: Breakfast

Travel to Budapest today, then discover the major landmarks of both sides of the city—Buda and Pest—with a local guide.

• Trace this nation’s stormy history at Heroes Square

• Tour the lavishly decorated Hungarian Parliament building

• Cross the Danube and ascend Castle Hill

• Take in the breathtaking views from Fisherman’s Bastion

• Visit the medieval Matthias Church, once the site of Hapsburg coronations

Day 15: Free day in Budapest

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a full free day in Budapest or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Budapest: A Walk Behind the Iron Curtain $69*pp Details

Discover the turbulent, tragic and heroic history of the communist period in Budapest on today’s excursion. Your guided sightseeing tour passes the Parliament building, which was the starting place of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and still shows signs of damage from the Soviet invasion. Visit the nearby statue of Imre Nagy, Hungary’s Prime Minister during the revolution, who is an enduring symbol of freedom. Liberty Square is just a stroll away, home to the U.S. Embassy, a statue of Ronald Reagan and the only remaining monument to Communist troops. From St. Stephen’s Basilica, take the historical Metro Line 1 up the iconic Andrassy Ave. Stop for an included coffee and piece of cake amidst the Neo-Renaissance splendor of Book Café, the regular meeting place of the intelligentsia during the Soviet occupation. End the day at the House of Terror, where you will take a guided tour through this chilling museum and moving monument to the victims of communism and fascism in Hungary.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $79)

Day 16: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

How's the weather?

  • Heidelberg, Germany
  • Lucerne, Switzerland
  • Innsbruck, Austria
  • Munich, Germany
  • Salzburg, Austria
  • Vienna, Austria
  • Budapest, Hungary
Temperature Precipitation
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC

Passport & Visa

This itinerary includes the following countries: Austria, Switzerland, Germany, the principality of Liechtenstein (on transfer), and Hungary (on extension). In order to enter these countries, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport. The expiration date must extend at least six months beyond the date of your return home. No visa is required for U.S. or Canadian citizens. If you are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact each country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.

Health

There are no major health risks associated with traveling on this tour. Be aware of high-altitude conditions in the region. The elevation of Mount Pilatus is 7,000 feet. Be sure to check with your health care provider for the latest updates and overseas travel requirements.

Transportation / Walking on tour

Round-trip flights arrive in Frankfurt and depart from Vienna (or Budapest on the extension). Included transportation on your tour is by private motor coach. In your free time, you may wish to explore the main cities by public transportation. Munich’s transportation system (MVV) is topnotch, an all-inclusive combination of trams, buses, U-bahn (underground) and S-bahn (above ground). Purchase tickets from newspaper stands, vending machines or the drivers. Most of the major attractions lie within the inner-city blue zone. Vienna has one of Europe’s most efficient transportation systems. You can purchase tickets in singles or in bulk for S-bahn, U-bahn, tram and bus lines. The waiting time for trains and subways is usually no more than five to 10 minutes.

Clothing & Packing Tips

To ensure you’re comfortable while out exploring, we recommend packing lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that can be easily layered. For sightseeing, we suggest bringing a sturdy pair of walking shoes or sneakers, as well as a lightweight sports jacket or rainwear. If you’re planning a visit to a high-end restaurant or performance, you may also want to bring dressier attire. Also, please remember that it’s preferable to avoid showing bare legs or shoulders during visits to churches or other religious sites (entrance may be denied on this basis).

Baggage Allowance

Airlines have varying weight restrictions on luggage. Some airlines may impose additional charges if you choose to check any baggage. Please contact your airline or refer to its website for detailed information regarding your airline’s checked baggage policies. Bear in mind that your luggage will probably weigh more on your return trip due to souvenir shopping. We allow only one suitcase per person. One carry-on bag is also permitted, provided that it does not exceed 45 inches (length + width + height). There may be times when you will have to handle your own bags, and you’ll find that lightweight luggage provides a distinct advantage. Make sure you label your baggage and carry valuables, medication and documents in your carry-on luggage.

Cuisine

In Austria, thick soups of paprika and onion, veal, beef and venison with cranberries are popular, as is the renowned Wiener Schnitzel. Fish-lovers will find wild trout, roast carp and crayfish. Desserts are perhaps the most memorable including: strudels made with all kinds of fruit and nuts, soufflés and elegant chocolate cakes such as the world-famous Sachertorte. Swiss food, influenced by surrounding countries, is varied and sophisticated. The most famous local dish is fondue, made from molten cheese, flavored with wine, garlic and liquor, into which pieces of skewered bread are dipped. Raclette is another delicious cooked cheese dish, served with roasted or boiled potatoes, air-dried beef and pickled onions. Sausages, breaded veal fillets and freshwater fish are also popular. Swiss dairy products are among the world’s finest, and full-cream milk is the essential ingredient for the exceptionally good chocolate produced here. German food is hearty and substantial. Among the specialties are dumpling stews and sauerkraut cabbage, tasty thick sausages and smoked cheeses, dark breads and chocolate cakes. Bavaria produces some of the world’s purest beers, while white German wines are exceptionally good.

Currency

The euro (in Austria and Germany) and the Swiss franc are the currencies you’ll be using on your tour. Better rates of exchange are usually available in your destination countries, although it’s worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive. We advise that you take credit cards, ATM/bank cards and traveler’s checks, which can be exchanged for cash at local banks, as needed. We suggest informing your bank and credit card company of your travel plans, so they don’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges.

Tipping

At the conclusion of your tour, it’s customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity. We recommend tipping in your tour country’s currency the equivalent of $3USD/CAD per day for your driver and $6USD/CAD to $9USD/CAD per day for your Tour Director. If applicable, we also recommend the equivalent of $1USD/CAD per local guide. Tips can only be paid in cash. Please keep current currency rates in mind when tipping.

See what our travelers say about this tour—all reviews are authentic and unedited.

Have you been on tour with us? Visit My Account to submit a review.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 4/28/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From:

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

"Best Tour Director" Great Tour!

Paula, was a Super Tour Director, she was very knowledgeable about the Countries & places we visited and was quick to point out extra points of interest etc... and things to do & places to go on our free time. Paula was very Friendly, Cheerful, Witty & Helpful to all of us. The city guides were great and knew all about the cities we were visiting. Kamil, our Bus Driver, was very nice, friendly & helpful to all and "most of all" a Great Driver The Countries we visited & places visited & side tours were all great. The hotels were all first class, modern, clean & had fabulous breakfasts. The meals were great. Airline travel was great. This was our first Go Ahead Tour and we would like to go again.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 7/22/2009

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: TX

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

3 countries, not too much

Such a great tour, I would do it again!!!

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 4/28/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: CO

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great Tour Value

This tour was the finest. We experienced so many things; such as, castles, history information, fantastic sites and scenery. The tour guide, Paula, was a font of information, watchful of the group, and cared about our experience. I've already recommended this tour to friends and family. Thanks for the experience! Tom

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 3/24/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: MD

Tour Director: 3 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Interesting tour

Overall is good, below are my inputs: 1) During the free time period, we should have been given more information local popular sites for tourists. 2) More time should be given for bus tour at the major cities, instead of free time, as an optional ride to feel the cities by day or evening illumination. 3) When travelling on the bus, tour director could explain more the major histroy and building in passing. 4) The food quality and quantitly could be better, espically the optional tour for high price meals priced into it. 5) Hotel at the last stop at Vienna, Penta Hotel, is the least desirable. Room and dinning area is small. Decoration is nothing related to European style. No kettle, no hot coffee and hot tea as part of the service. Second cup of hot water would cost you. 6) My laugage front pockets were search open between Penta Hotel to Vienna Airport, I noticed that when it was delivered back to me by the coach driver at the airport. It was most likely done by the hotel porter as suggested by the Tour Director. 7) The optional tour for the concentration labor camp was poorly done. Half of the buildings are no longer demolished or closed for public. Half of the day wasted for looking at the photos on site. I am sure a $10.00 DVD could learn more. 8) Be advised, optional tours could take away the valuable time at the major cities, for example the dinner tour and former eastern block country at Vienna.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 3/24/2015

Number of Past Tours: 5

From: PA

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best of Europe so far

Every country is different and fascinating!!

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 11/17/2013

Number of Past Tours: 5

From: TN

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Simply The Best!

It was my first time in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria we cover 6 countries on this trip I was there in November and the first few days of December it was avery good tour. The tour guide was the best, very knowledgable and willing to help with anything you needed. I have not wrote a review before this one and this was my 5th trip with GoAhead tours. My name is Charlie and I am from Tennessee. I have been in 24 countries and 40 states in the USA at this time. I Love taking pictures and sight seeing, studying new cultures and meeting new people. I would highly reccomend this tour to anyone. I am a Group Leader for a tour in Bulgaria, Romania and Count Draculas Castle. Should be alot of fun, come join us we will have a blast I am sure, Thank you for taking the time to read my review. Charlie

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/11/2014

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: KS

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best tour director ever

Juergen was the best............ extremely attentive, went above and beyond all expectations. The tour was awesome, wonderful stops and breathtaking views. Very fun group.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 11/11/2014

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: WY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

A Little Bit of Everything

I traveled on this tour in November, 2014. Our tour director, Constantine, was fun, thoughtful, knowledgeable, and energetic. Looking at the itinerary, it is hard to believe that any one tour can offer this much, but it is true! We did and saw absolutely everything listed, and more! Our group was relatively small, around 15, and we had many opportunities to break away and explore in small groups, visit pubs, sample various cuisines, and wander into cathedrals, opera houses, museums, etc. While there is ample free time, there was not much idle time - other than the long bus rides, which are to be expected when viewing the map and following the itinerary. The accommodations were very centrally located, which made it easy to stumble into night life when we so desired. The pace of the tour, despite the bus rides, was great!! I liked that the your seems to "heat up" as we traveled... Starting in laid-back, quaint Heidelberg and building momentum and excitement all the way to the gem of the trip, the capstone, stunning Vienna!! Goahead had to cancel the tour extension to Budapest because of low enrollment, but my tour consultant actually helped me plan out my own adventure and I forged forward solo, following the Goahead itinerary and seeking out he sights in budapest on my own using other local guide companies, etc. I really appreciated GoAhead's flexibility with my flights, etc. and encouragement to go it alone. ;-). Another point of interest with regard to our experience was the addition of the Christmas markets!!! We did not expect these to be open already (November 11 - November 26) -- but by a stroke of luck, there were beautiful festive Christmas markets in EVERY town we visited from Innsbruck forward! Our gracious and accommodating tour director always have us a bit of time to explore the markets in addition to our planned itinerary. This tour was excellent in every way!!

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5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 8/6/2014

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: TX

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Lala the Great

My tour director was, in a word, superb! She was not only gracious, knowledgeable and thoughtful. The one difficult member of our tour group was handled by Lala in the most appropriate ways...sometimes tenderly, sometimes more directly.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 8/13/2014

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: UT

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

best trip so far

It was a fabulous trip ; the countries; places we stayed; the extra excursions made the trip even better and the tour director was fun, knew and told us a lot of history and local info

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