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Reid777 Mar 11th, 2009 06:59 PM

Critique and suggestions needed on European Itinerary
With the help of a local travel agent, I have put together a private tour of 20 friends and family. Over half of the group has never been to Europe before. The average age is 55, and everyone is in great shape, enjoys sightseeing, eating, drinking, meeting people, and are not afraid to explore on their own. We are much more the "Hofbrauhaus" type than the opera house type. This is what I have planned so far - please let me know what you think, and give me any suggestions as to what you think I could/should change, add, or delete.
Fri., Sept 4th - arrive Munich @ 9:00am. Picked up by private bus at airport, with a 2 hr guided tour of Munich. Lunch at Hofbrauhaus. Hotel check-in with evening free.
Sat., 09/05 - 9:00am - Private bus to Lindenhoff, Oberammegau, and Schloss Neuschwanstein. late afternoon stop at Klos Andechs, maybe dinner there (?), then back to Munich.
Sun., 09/06 - free - suggestions (?) optional train to Dauchau, English Garden, sightseeing tours,
Mon. 09/07 - 8:00am private bus to Vienna, with a stop in Durnstein. Are there any restaurants, wineries, breweries, that you suggest for lunch? After arrival, 2 hour walking tour of Vienna, with the evening free for dinner, shopping, coffee, concert, Any suggestions?
Tues., 09/08 - 9:00am hydrofoil to Budapest. Free afternoon and evening .
Wed., 09/09 - free day to explore - I have suggested Buda Castle, Monument Park, thermal baths, etc., any more suggestions(?). 6:00pm - Budapest by Night Tour with Folkloric dinner and show afterwards.
Thurs. 09/10 - all day free, with either overnight train or evening flight to Prague (we are still working on this)
Fri. 09/11 - 9:00 - 3 hr. walking tour of Prague, rest of day free - suggestions(?)
Sat. 09/12 - free to explore - sugestions(?)
Sun. 09/13 - am flight home.
Does this sound "do-able?" Any input as to special tours, tour directors, group outings, great pubs, wine houses, indoor/outdoor concerts, dinner cruises, etc. would be greatly appreciated.

ira Mar 12th, 2009 03:57 AM

Hi Reid,

I think that you done real good.

For your free day in Prague, you might want to considering arranging for a visit to Terezin. There are firms that will give guided tours to groups of ten or more.

FYI "LindeRhoff, OberammeRgau"


Cowboy1968 Mar 12th, 2009 04:33 AM

Just one remark re. your destinations in Bavaria:

Early September, Bavaria is still in school break, so you can expect any place you mentioned (and especially on a weekend) to be very to extremely busy.

I would try to get confirmed reservations for every place you plan to visit, need a tour, or want to stop for lunch/dinner.
Kloster Andechs is a nice spot for dinner, has a nice brewery pub and beer garden - but again, very busy on weekends(especially when the weather is fine).

Since you cannot control the weather, it may also be an idea to have a back-up list with museums or indoor sights, e.g. in Munich on Sept. 6: the churches, the downtown Residenz (royal residence), the Arts Museums (Pinakotheken), the Deutsches Museum (oriented towards science and technology), etc.

If you are not fed up with castles already, you can also spend the Sunday morning in Munich, visiting Nymphenburg palace and its park with several smaller mansions/"castles" - and have lunch or afternoon beer in nearby Hirschgarten beer garden (seats 8K, no reservations required ;-) for a more "local experience" than Hofbräuhaus.. no oompah, though)

The English Garden is a very nice and large city park with several restaurants or beer gardens - but given the short amount of time you'll be in Munich, there is not too much to do or see there.

While Dachau is within easy reach of Munich, the Concentration Camp Memorial is not that close to the station. You may want to check their website on how to get there with a bus from Dachau station.

Ingo Mar 12th, 2009 04:51 AM

Any ideas what you will see in that 3 hour walking tour of Prague? It's hard to recommend something if we don't know what you've seen so far. However, 3 hours sound like you'll probably only see the old Market square and surroundings, maybe the Jewish quarter and Charles bridge, not even the Lesser Town across the river.

Definitely see Strahov Monastery (nice microbrewery there, but make reservations for such a big group), Loreto and Hradcany castle. The interior of the castle isn't too exciting for many folks, so skip going inside. But see the St. Vitus cathedral.

For the free day I'd recommend a day trip to Kutna Hora. (Bone chapel). Or Karlstejn castle (though you might have seen enough castles on your trip at that time). Maybe it would be possible to organise a day trip to Karlovy Vary - interesting spa town, good for wandering around, shopping (fancy) and people watching.

Reid777 Mar 12th, 2009 08:20 AM

Thanks for the input so far......looking forward to more suggestions.....

Reid777 Mar 12th, 2009 09:53 AM


molker Mar 12th, 2009 10:11 AM

regarding 09/07 - you probably pass Melk Abbey on your way to Dürnstein along the Danube.
Look to visit there - they also have an adjacent restaurant -saving some time.

Dürnstein certainly worth a visit - but the nice wine garden Alten Klosterkeller does not open until 3PM ( 15:00) weekdays

This is wine country so no breweries nearby
An alternative for dining in Dürnstein would be the restaurant of the Hotel Sanger Blondel, good food and atmosphere.
Another good choice would be the Loibnerhof just 1 kilometer from Dürnstein in the direction of Vienna- excelent dining in a garden if good weather.

I do not like the hydrofoil trip- it is expensive and slow 5 1/2 to 6 hours in an old boat now refurbished but not great for that long time . The scenery is also not that good.
I would spend more time in Vienna- you have just a few hours - so much to see there.

Look at the train schedule to Budapest - cheaper - faster, more comfortable and frequent service.

Reid777 Mar 12th, 2009 12:41 PM

thanks, Molker...I have emailed Alter Klosterkeller to see if their hours may be different at that time of year. Also, Melk Abbey looks great, as does Loibnerhof. Any suggestions for Wine Taverns in Vienna...I see (in my Fodor's Guide) that there is a Melker Stiftskeller in town that looks big enough to hold my group....
Also, does anyone suggest doing a dinner cruise on our only night there?

molker Mar 12th, 2009 01:04 PM

The cruise with dinner does not really offer great views or good food.

With limited time , you may just wish to eat in the city center - more time for sightseeing-
look at the following place
The 12 Apostles Keller- Zwölf apostelkeller

more than big enough -
you can dine from the menu or with 20 or more have a special buffet

They have music in the evening also to add to the experience.

This is in the city center - 5 minutes walk from Stephansdom- the Vienna Cathedral - for many a must see.

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