DAY 1 - London to Paris
Welcome to the first day of the best trip of your life - we're calling it early! After a few pleasantries in London we'll get the show on the road with Paris in our sights.
A few hours in and your jaws are on the floor already. These chalk cliffs that edge the English coastline are known as the White Cliffs of Dover, the first of many natural beauties we'll see on our trip.
After we ferry across the English Channel for France we'll arrive in Calais, where we will take in the history of World War I battlefields in the Valley of the Somme.
Kicking off night one, we arrive in none other than the lust-worthy Paris! It's straight down to business with a tour of the city lit up by the lights of night.
DAY 2 - Paris
Today's the day to stroll the beautiful streets of Paris, with plenty of time to lust over designer haute couture or French vintage stores, admire the Notre Dame Cathedral, order coffee and crêpes, or get artsy at the many museums of the Louvre. Tonight, foodies will have the chance to eat a Parisian feast in Montmartre, surrounded by cobbled lanes, village-esque cafes, street artists and the Sacré-Cœur Basilica. Otherwise, this is your night to sign up for an iconic Parisian cabaret show. Either option will give you the perfect way to make it one to remember!
DAY 3 - Paris to Swiss Alps
Out with the city life, in with the fresh mountain air. On leaving Paris we’ll coast through the pretty wine producing region of Burgundy before crossing the border to Switzerland.
With magical views unfolding outside our windows we'll find ourselves in Switzerland, ready for two nights at our accommodation in the heart of this traditional resort town. This place comes to life as the sun sets, so tonight we'll have a chance to check out the local nightlife and foodie scene, as well as load up on Swiss chocolate.
DAY 4 - Swiss Alps
Open the window of your room and drink in the incredible view. Today you’re free to explore this classic European adventure town. Feeling extra adventurous? Today is your chance to ascend Jungfrau mountain, aka ‘the Top of the World’, or sign up for a high ropes course in the treetops.
DAY 5 - Swiss Alps to Beaujolais Wine Region
It’s been sweet, but we’re swapping Switzerland back for France again this morning.
Rolling into the Beaujolais region of France amidst vineyards, we'll arrive at Contiki’s very own 16th century Château. This might just be our most decadent accommodation yet, complete with newly-renovated bedrooms & bathrooms, an on-site nightclub, artwork in every room, a games room, and a powder room for makeup and hair. And we haven't even shown you the pool or the gardens yet! Tonight we'll start off with an included dinner and wine tasting here at the Château, because, when in France...
DAY 6 - Beaujolais Wine Region
Pinch yourself, this is another day at the Château & another chance to live your best French countryside life with a full day here in Beaujolais. Rise & shine with optional sunrise yoga on the sprawling lawn of the Château's gardens, relax in the courtyard with a coffee & croissant, or loll about poolside in our castle-like setting. Our highlight today is a picnic in the picturesque gardens. Cue panoramic views & red wine.
DAY 7 - Beaujolais Wine Region to Barcelona
Bye-bye Beaujolais! And hello Barcelona. The Pyrénées mountains will keep our eyes satisfied today as we roll across the border for Spain's most lively city. Each day as sweet as the last.
Well would you look at that for timing, we've pulled into Barcelona just on sangria o'clock. Fate, you've done it again! Tapas and a night exploring the city should have us in the Spanish mood before we know it.
DAY 8 - Barcelona
Cobbled lanes of the Gothic Quarter, Montjuic hilltop vistas, & wild Spanish architecture will season our day to perfection. There's plenty of free time to roam free or take a dip in the Mediterranean sea, just don't tire yourself out - chances are you'll want to partake in the evening of Flamenco fun.
DAY 9 - Barcelona to The Riviera via Arles
As smitten as we are by Barcelona, we have more of Europe to conquer. Much, much more...
After a dreamy drive across the border into France through landscapes of lavender, sunflowers and wild herbs, we'll arrive at our lunch break town of Arles. Here we will get a peek at an ancient Roman Arena and at a typical provincial French town.
You're not a real celebrity until you've frolicked on the French Riviera, and who are we to keep you off the A-List? Sapphire waters & endless glamour as we roll through this glitzy coastline.
DAY 10 - French Riviera including Moncao
You're not a real celebrity until you've frolicked on the French Riviera. And who we are to keep you off the A-list? Sapphire waters & endless glamour will be on your 'Must See' list for the day.
This evening we add even more glamour to your life with a visit to Monaco. Don a fancy necklace and pop a plum in your mouth - we're about to embark on the lifestyle of the rich and famous.
After a night on the blackjack table it's back to the coast and to bed, the next part of the adventure starts tomorrow.
DAY 11 - French Riviera to Venice
Today we say our farewells to the French Riviera and take our first jaunt into Italy. Pizza, pasta, & charming locals are just around the corner.
The floating city of gondolas, canals and pretty bridges - what a splendid way to commence our Italian love affair. Rest up tonight, you'll want to be alert for tomorrow's magical agenda.
DAY 12 - Venice
Buongiorno! Venice is ours for a full and glorious Italian day. We'll start exploring The Floating City by jumping aboard our own private motoscaffo boat and cruising the canals en route to the historical heart of the city. Here we'll take selfies at the Bridge of Sighs, see the Doge's Palace & St. Mark's Square. Next, you have the option to discover hidden Venice with a guided walking tour or a traditional gondola ride, or take a guided cruise out to the UNESCO heritage site of Burano. At this picture-perfect fisherman’s island decorated with gorgeous technicolour houses, you’ll visit a local family restaurant and indulge in the best seafood feast you’ve ever experienced.
DAY 13 - Venice to Florence via Pisa
Farewell floating city, but Italy, we're not done with you yet, our next destination Florence is just around the corner.
No trip around Europe is complete without seeing the world's most famous #AwkwardLean, the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Once you've got that perfect snap of you holding the thing up like you're Arnold Schwarzenegger, we'll be on the fast-track to Florence.
The dome of Duomo Cathedral sits above the city making certain we know we have arrived in Florence. Tonight you can choose to begin your Tuscan love affair at a Free Time Add-On dinner - think olives, pastas, focaccia, meats & wine.
DAY 14 - Florence to Rome
This morning is the perfect balance of guided local wisdom and free time to roam. First we'll uncover the beautiful art of traditional leatherwork, then you’re free to make the most of your final hours in Florence. Finally with a heartfelt ‘ciao’ to Florence, we’re bound for the epicentre of Italy: the Eternal City of Rome.
After we drift through the rustic Tuscan hillsides of cypress trees and glowing fields, we'll be back city side in the Italian capital of Rome. Starting with a city walking tour, the Trevi Fountain, Pantheon & Piazza Navona are just some of the icons we'll be casting our eyes upon before the sun sets.
DAY 15 - Rome
When in Rome... This is the day to learn a thing or two about the Colosseum & do a bit of your own exploring. Espressos and people watching should be high priority, as well as stuffing yourself to the brim with pasta, gelato and caprese salad all washed down with a glass of red at a local trattoria.
DAY 16 - Rome to Overnight Adriatic Ferry via Pompeii and Bari
The majestic site of Mt. Vesuvius will interlude our trip from Rome to Bari, our ferry port for today's border leap into Greece.
Once a totally vibing hang-out of the Romans, Pompeii is now an archaeological site showing remains of what was destroyed by a mountain eruption in the year...wait for it...79AD. The saying "step back in time" is about to take on a whole new meaning.
Let your feet walk their last few steps on Italian soil before we hit the seas for an overnight ferry ride en route to Greece.
Overnight Adriatic Ferry
DAY 17 - Overnight Adriatic Ferry to Athens via Patras and Corinth Canal
Overnight Adriatic Ferry
Full steam ahead this morning, our course is set for Athens via the Corinth Canal.
Oh hello there...we're pulling up in Greece! The awe of this country's mainland will begin shortly after our arrival as we catch a glimpse of Corinth Canal. This man-made passageway squeezes boats through it's path, sandwiched by two steep cliffs and sitting over gloriously blue ocean.
The awe of Greece's mainland will begin shortly as we catch a glimpse of Corinth Canal. This man-made passageway squeezes boats through it's path, sandwiched by two steep cliffs and sitting over glorious blue ocean. Docking here, we’ll make tracks overland for Athens.
A collage of ancient wonders & modern magnificence, the allure of Athens is hard to resist. We'll jump straight in with a sightseeing tour of Athens. Our Local Guide will escort us through the history of the city visiting the Parthenon & Acropolis, followed by a visit to the first & original 'modern' (read: 1896) Olympic stadium.
DAY 18 - Athens to Ios
This morning is ours to soak up the last few hours of Athens, before we swap ancient history for island life on Ios.
Sweet mother of sunshine we're going to the Greek Islands! And Ios, no less. A little less developed than its brothers and sisters, you'll be overawed by its rugged beauty from the time we begin our approach. Relax this eve as we've got 3 whole nights up our sleeves to explore.
DAY 19 - Ios
Don’t underestimate the power of this village. When the sun sets, this place really comes to life. As such, we suggest a day out on the water getting salty on a boat trip, or a full day of pool hangs and beach time so you're all sun-kissed and feeling floaty by the time the night rolls in.
DAY 20 - Ios
Another day, another chance to soak up the Greek sun and frolic in the sand without a care in the world. Get some adrenaline in with some watersports, or if you haven't done so already, go explore the pretty town and down a hearty meal at a local cafe. You're going to need the fuel if you want to hang out in the party scene of Hora until the break of dawn.
DAY 21 - Ios to Santorini
Just as you're beginning to lose track of time and forget that a world exists beyond Ios, we'll head off. One more day getting in the groove of things and you'll wind up being that kid who came to Ios and decided to never leave.
Thousands of years ago a volcano erupted - one of the largest eruptions in the recorded history of the Earth - and made what we now know as the island of Santorini. Only it didn't have its iconic blue-domed churches back then, those came a little further down the track. That's all for your history lesson, now the day is yours to potter & pout while taking happy snaps. And "happy" today will be an absolute understatement.
DAY 22 - Santorini
Rise and shine, Greek Island travellers! The island of Santorini will not explore itself. Take a swim at Perissa Beach, eat the local specialty of fried tomato balls known as domatokeftedes, and roam the streets of Fira. Just remember to plan your day around the excursion to the iconic sunset of Oia - this is not an optional you're going to want to miss.
DAY 23 - Santorini
The beautiful thing about having two full days on the one island is you have time to both relax and explore. Whatever you didn't do yesterday is still up for grabs today. If you feel like you've crammed it all in already, just head to the black or red sand beaches and spend another glorious day ocean-side. Ain't life grand?
DAY 24 - Santorini to Athens
Wipe those sad looks off your faces! Life doesn't end when you leave the Greek Islands. In fact we have many, many more places to look forward to. Turkey, Austria and Germany just to name a few.
Oh hey Athens, it feels like forever since we last hung out! And same goes for our Contiki posse. Enjoy this reunion night then it's back on the road tomorrow - the good times never stop.
DAY 25 - Athens to Kavala via Thermopylae
By now you should be well and truly acquainted with all things Athens and ready to embark on our next venture. This time tomorrow we'll be on a whole new continent.
Before arrival in our final destination in this fine country we'll see Greece’s highest peak, Mt Olympus, and the grounds of Thermopylae, where an ancient battle of 300 vs. thousands proved size really doesn't count.
The coastal town of Kavala is our nest for the evening. Down your last Greek salad, cheers the country over a glass of ouzo and sleep well in preparation for our next few days in Turkey.
DAY 26 - Kavala to Canakkale via Troy
From the comfort of our ferry as it crosses the Dardanelles, get your pout out and blow your final kiss in the direction of Greece. We'll be carving up the seas making our way to...ASIA! Ah, the traveller's life.
This afternoon we discover that "Troy" means more than just a Hollywood blockbuster; so much more. Our Local Guide will unravel the historical layers of a ten year war & what is now a mythical excavation site.
Continent crossed - squeal!! There aren't likely to be many times in your life that you'll do that at sea level. Welcome to Asia & just as importantly, welcome to Turkey.
DAY 27 - Canakkale to Istanbul via Gallipoli
So long Canakkale, we're off to the only city in the world split over two continents, incredible Istanbul.
Though a few days of fun times and city frolics are ahead of us, we will start our Turkish explorations on a sobering note by visiting the battlegrounds of Gallipoli.
Unlike anywhere else on earth, Istanbul is set to capture your heart and imagination. Rest up tonight and the city is yours from sunrise.
DAY 28 - Istanbul
The Blue Mosque with its interior of 20,000 handmade tiles; lively spice markets; bazaars bursting at the sides with silver & jewels. Istanbul is one place we'll really have to drag you away from. Our Local Guide will show you the hotspots, and you're always free to get lost and uncover some secrets of your own. Just be sure to find your way back if you're keen for the traditional Turkish evening with dinner and a show.
DAY 29 - Istanbul
A city like this needs more than a day on our calendar. Take in the sites you missed yesterday or if you're all explored out, go unwind at a "hammam" spa for a Turkish bath. Then drink endless tea and eat your body weight in baklava and you've had the full Turkey experience.
DAY 30 - Istanbul to Black Sea
Bid farewell to Bulgaria as we set our sights on Romania.
Here we'll be greeted by coastal resort towns and bar-lined waterfronts, where we'll be headed this evening to enjoy some dinner and a taste of the local nightlife.
DAY 31 - Black Sea to Bucharest
Bid farewell to Bulgaria as we set our sights on Romania.
Crossing the border, we'll arrive in Bucharest this afternoon to discover beautiful architecture, street art, rooftop cafes, and an ornate Parliament building with enough steel, bronze, marble, crystal and wood that combine to make it the heaviest in the world! You'll have free time this afternoon and evening to explore the city, maybe checking out the open air museum 'Dimitrie Gusti' with depictions of village life, exploring the colourful umbrella passage between Universitate and Victoriei, or tasting an authentic traditional meal in the Old City or one of the local bistros.
DAY 32 - Bucharest to Transylvania
Departing Bucharest after breakfast, we'll set our sights for none other than Transylvania.
Of course, a stay in Transylvania wouldn't be complete without a drive to Bran Castle to visit the real life setting that inspired Dracula, before driving on towards Cluj-Napoca. Here we'll get acquainted with the city, with Saxon and Hungarian landmarks, one of the biggest old town squares in Southeastern Europe, a beautiful Botanical Garden, fortified Cetățuia Monastery and a 15th century tower. With a free evening tonight, you'll also have the chance to explore the local nightlife and bar scene.
DAY 33 - Transylvania to Budapest
We'll leave behind the ghosts of Transylvania's past and hit the road for Budapest.
Fun fact #1: Buda and Pest are two different cities separated by a river, together they make Budapest. Fun fact #2: You're going to be head over heels with both of them by the time we scoot outta here. Down goulash and cabbage rolls on tonight's optional cruise to get into the Hungarian spirit of things.
DAY 34 - Budapest
Throw yourself into the sightseeing this morning with the church of St. Matthias, the Royal Palace and the Chain Bridge. That way you'll really earn an afternoon soaking in the cities famous outdoor thermal pools set amongst Art Nouveau architecture. Blissed out in Budapest - there's an insta caption for you.
DAY 35 - Budapest to Salzburg
Bye Budapest! Normally we’d be devastated to be leaving, but with Austria on the horizon we have strudel and music to look forward to.
Onwards and upwards we go, into the mountain ranges that made the Sound of Music famous. Also home to Mozart, you can be pretty certain Salzburg knows a tune! This evening you’ll have the chance to venture off the beaten track and visit a working farm in the hills above Salzburg where the local family will invite us into their home to eat, drink and learn about their lives. This family have lived on the farm for many generations and now look to tourism to help support them and their local community, with food sourced from local farms and fruit for the schnaps from the village.
DAY 36 - Salzburg to Austrian Tyrol
Morning Salzburg! Today you’ll have the chance to sign up for a tour of the Sights & Sounds of Salzburg before we say goodbye to Salzburg and continue on in our discovery of Austria.
Breathe in that fresh alpine air and take in the dreamy setting we’ve descended upon. Here in the Austrian Tyrol we'll be resting up in a Contiki Special Stay, a local Austrian Gasthof (guest house) that's waiting for us with open arms. This is the perfect cosy retreat to relax and swap stories with our crew, while tucking into authentic Austrian food and local beer prepared fresh on site.
DAY 37 - Austrian Tyrol
Wake up, peel open your curtains, and take in the magnificence of your view. If you're feeling lively you can jump onto a bike tour through green mountains and waterfalls. If you're feeling really lively you can go tandem paragliding. Not so lively? Stroll around and take in the incredible setting; drink endless hot chocolate, go up a mountain in a gondola or relax at our Gasthof.
DAY 38 - Austrian Tyrol to Munich
Polish off your stay in Austria with an optional whitewater rafting adventure - that should get the adrenaline pumping and excitement high for our impending visit to Germany.
A city famous the world over for its annual beer festival is a city we need to know about. And luckily enough, its Bavarian culture is a year round attraction. You can explore the side streets of Munich on an optional bike tour, or go it on your own and see what you stumble upon.
DAY 39 - Munich to Prague via Dachau
Today it’s goodbye Germany, hello Czech. But first, we have an important stop to make.
Journeying out of Munich, we’ll make a stop at Dachau for a sobering visit to the Dachau concentration camp memorial. You;ll be able to spend some time here to learn and reflect, before we head on to Prague.
On arrival in the compact & lovable city of Prague, we'll get out and go exploring, seeing castles and cathedrals and learning of Bohemian Kings & Queens and gothic history. Prague is a paradise for beer lovers and in the afternoon you have the chance to join a Pivo & Pubs experience, with a local expert ready to take you on a tour of some of Prague's coolest spots for a pint...or two.
DAY 40 - Prague
Today is the day we get to know the real Prague. If you’re looking to give your feet a rest, hop on a bike to whirl through the city with ease, stopping off for chimney cakes to keep energy levels high. The evening will see us immerse ourselves in Czech culture with an optional Traditional Czech evening, featuring a folklore show and dinner.
DAY 41 - Prague to Berlin
You may have fallen head over heels for Prague, but we have so many more places to be! Back on the coach, we'll roll on to our next country, Germany.
A drive from Prague to Berlin wouldn't be complete without stopping in Dresden. Sadly destroyed by World War II, the rebuilt town is now a symbol of resilience, soaked in the beauty of an Opera house, the domed Frauenkirche, & the Royal Residence. We'll spot them all on a tour of the best spots before hitting the road again.
On the world map of party vibes, Berlin has a gold star. We've got two nights to explore every inch of this iconic city, and we'll kick it off with an included dinner tonight, ready for a full day of exploring tomorrow.
DAY 42 - Berlin
Today you'll have the chance to really uncover Berlin. You can opt to take a historical walking tour, including a visit to the site of Hitler's bunker. Otherwise, you're free to explore all the obscurities tucked away off the main street of Unter Den Linden, see the Brandenburg gate, discover nature at the Lustgarten, or catch the U-bahn to one of Berlin's quirky neighbourhoods. Or, if you skipped the historical walking tour this morning, there'll be the chance to join an alternative walking tour of the city, showing you a side of Berlin not often seen by tourists. And if you're looking for a night out, now is the perfect time to scope out one of those underground raves or cocktail-lounge-in-the-basement scenarios that Berlin is famous for.
DAY 43 - Berlin to Amsterdam
We’ll journey out of Germany today and travel through the gloriously flat Netherlands with Amsterdam in our sights.
We'll enjoy an included dinner in Amsterdam this evening, then you're free to explore this city with a peek of the canals, bicycles & 17th century gable houses lit up by night, plus plenty of nightlife to keep you going until the early hours.
DAY 44 - Amsterdam
Amsterdam is as cute as it comes and sure to win your heart with its cobbled main streets, canalside views, obscure museums & a café culture like no other. Today you'll have the chance to get exclusive access at the A'DAM swing for panoramic views of the city before using your free time to get local, bar hop, museum crawl, or just explore. If you're hungry to taste your way you through the local culture, this place is famous for Dutch pancakes, frites, cheese, stroopwafels and coffee. But save some room for tonight's delicious included dinner with the rest of the Contiki fam.
DAY 45 - Depart Amsterdam
Get your tissues ready, it's time to say goodbye to your new Contiki family. We'll escort you to Schiphol Airport by about 10am.
For those not leaving us until London, we'll travel south through Belgium - cross another country off your list.
This afternoon we cross from France to England and then back to London-town, where you'll be left to start dreaming up your next big adventure.