Major castles tours are our specialty.  These all-inclusive small-group tours are conducted in English, and feature inside visits conducted by expert local guides at the most impressive castles, palaces, chateaux, cathedrals, and monasteries.  These tours also visit the best-preserved medieval towns in Germany and central Europe.  All accommodation, transportation, entrances, guide fees, and most meals are included.  There are no hidden extras and no "optional" activities that you pay for yourself.

The Major Tours in this section range in length from 7 to 11 days, including travel.  Day and short tours are listed separately.


Brief Descriptions – Scheduled Major Tours

Bavarian Castles Tour –
King Ludwig II's Castles and the Bavarian Lakes

Discover the wonderful castles of King Ludwig II and the beauty of Bavaria's lakes and countryside.

Highlights include Ludwig's own castles – Neuschwanstein, Linderhof, and Herrenchiemsee – and the family castles and palaces – Hohenschwangau and Nymphenburg.

This tour also features visits to Fussen, Mount Zugspitze, Oberammergau, Munich and its famous Hofbrauhaus, Wieskirche (the Church in the Meadow), the Andechs monastery, and highlights in Innsbruck including Schloss Ambras and the Golden Roof.

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Neuschwanstein Castle

River Castles Tour –
The German Rivers Rhine, Moselle, Neckar & Main & their Castles

Travel back in time to the castles that dominated the German rivers. For hundreds of years the Rhine has ranked as one of Europe's most popular travel destinations because it is truly one of the most beautiful in Germany.  Spend plenty of time in this UNESCO Heritage region discovering the rivers, castles and ruins, cities and towns, and tales and legends of the Rhine and its tributaries Moselle, Neckar and Main.  Tour inside untouched ancient castles like the Marksburg and Burg Eltz, massive ruins like Rheinfels and parts of Heidelberger Schloss, cathedrals, fortresses, and walled medieval cities.

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Burg Eltz

Black Forest, Alsace and Switzerland –
Three Corners' Castles, Magnificent Scenery and Wine

Explore the "Three Corners" of Europe – where Germany, France and Switzerland meet by the Rhine River.

Tour beautiful castles in Germany and France, explore charming towns in both countries, and cruise on the Rhine River that serves as the border here.  Go sightseeing in Strasbourg and at the Rhine Falls.  Follow the Alsatian Wine Route.

And then visit gorgeous Lucerne in Switzerland and take in the breathtaking vistas from the top of Mount Pilatus.   Both regular season and Chrismas versions of this tour are offered.

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Hohenzollern Castle

Bavarian Christmas Markets Tour –
King Ludwig II's Castles and the Bavarian Christmas Markets

Marvel at the fascinating Christmas markets of Germany and Austria, do as much or as little Christmas shopping as you wish, and still see many of the features of the Bavarian Castles tour.

Highlights include the Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau, Linderhof, and Herrenchiemsee castles, Nymphenburg Palace, Wieskirche - the Church in the Meadow, Munich's Hofbrauhaus, and Christmas markets in Innsbruck, Fussen, Kempten, Oberammergau, and Munich.

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Munich at Christmas

Nutcrackers and Notables –
Treasures, Traditions and Christmas Markets from the Romantic Road to the Toy Town of Seiffen

Focus on the Christmas markets of central Germany and on the cultural treasures and rich history of the region.  Spend a night in fairy-tale-like Rothenburg.  Visit Nuremberg, with its imposing Castle and the Christkindlesmarkt.  Then four nights in Seiffen, a toy manufacturing town in the Ore Mountains where magical Christmas traditions have been unchanged for centuries.  Go on an excursion to historic Prague, visit Renaissance Dresden, see Weimar and Erfurt, and sleep where Luther was living as a Monk.

This tour includes visits to eight famous Christmas markets – in Rothenburg, Nuremberg, Seiffen, Prague, Dresden, Weimar, Erfurt, and Frankfurt.

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Munich at Christmas

Best of Germany and Austria –
Rhine and Danube, Castles and Mountains

This tour is for travelers who want to see the highlights of both Germany and Austria but have limited time.  This tour combines the best of our River, Bavarian, and Imperial Castles Tours.

Go for a cruise on the legendary Rhine and tour the Burg Eltz and Heidelberg castles.  Visit the medieval towns of Rothenburg and Dinkelsbuhl.  Tour King Ludwig II's Neuschwanstein and Herrenchiemsee castles.  See the highlights in Munich, including a stop at Nymphenburg Palace.  See Innsbruck's famous Golden Roof, and enjoy a traditional Tyrolean folklore show.  Tour Salzburg's Hellbrunn Palace.  Finish your Best Of tour in elegant Vienna, touring Schonbrunn Palace.

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Gloriette at Schönbrunn Palace

Kids and Castles Tour –
The Best of German Castles and Towns

This is a family tour designed for kids 4 through 14 with one or more parents or grandparents or for all three generations together.

First spend plenty of time discovering the Rhine, Moselle, Neckar and Main rivers, and their castles and ruins and their charming villages and towns.  Features include inside tours of the Rheinfels, Marksburg, Eltz and Heidelberg castles.

Then travel to Bavaria to see and tour inside King Ludwig II's Neuschwanstein, the most famous castle in Germany, and visit the famous Wilhelma Zoo and Legoland Germany.

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Legoland Germany

French Castles Tour –
Chateaux of Paris and the Loire Valley

Visit and tour Paris, and spend three nights in this exciting metropolis.  Then continue for four nights to the Loire Valley, the garden of France and the favourite residence of kings and their kin.  It remains a corner of paradise, with its dream-like palaces, elegant towns, quiet landscapes and majestic rivers.  The vineyards are a feast to the eyes and their fruits a joy to the palate.

Highlights include the Montmartre, Versailles, Eiffel Tower, Seine Cruise and Notre Dame in Paris, Fontainebleau Palace, Orléans, Amboise Castle and village, Clos-Luce and Chenonceau Palace, Blois Castle and town, Chambord, Cheverny, Villandry, and Tours.

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Italian Highlights Tour –
Rome, Florence and Venice

Visit and tour some of the most beautiful regions of Italy – Umbria, Tuscany and Veneto.

Stay three nights in Rome, the capital of Italy and the eternal city that has had a uniquely central role in the history of the western world and Christianity.  Spend three nights based in Florence, exploring its wealth of art, culture and history and visiting stunning Tuscan highlights in Pisa, Siena and San Gimignano.  And spend three nights in Venice, “La Serenissima” - the most serene.

Discover Roman ruins and Renaissance palaces, admire tiny medieval hill towns, enjoy the special colors of Tuscany and Umbria and Veneto, and discover what makes these regions so seductive.  Or simply come to enjoy the food and the wine.

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Brief Descriptions – Private Major Tours

Imperial Castles Private Tour –
Castles of Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic

Tour the legacies of the centuries when European imperial emperors and countries competed to build the largest, most ornate, and most expensive castles and palaces.  This tour begins in Munich and travels to Prague, towns in the southern Czech Republic, Vienna, Salzburg, and Innsbruck.

Castle, palace and regional highlights include the Residence and Hofbrauhaus in Munich, Prague Castle, Hluboka, and Cesky Krumlov in the Czech Republic, Schonbrunn in Vienna, Fortress Hohensalzburg, Castle Hellbrunn and Mirabell Gardens in Salzburg, and the Golden Roof in Innsbruck.

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Schönbrunn Palace gardens

Royal Delights Private Tour –
Munich, Salzburg and Vienna

Discover the highlights of southern Bavaria and Austria.  Spend three nights in Munich, one in Salzburg, and two in Vienna on your Royal Delights Private Tour.

Visit famous landmarks and castles – King Ludwig II's Neuschwanstein and Linderhof Castles, the famous village of Oberammergau, Wieskirche (the Church in the Meadow), Konigsee (one of the most beautiful Alpine Lakes), Hitler's Eagle’s Nest, Hohensalzburg Fortress, Queen Maria Theresa's Schönbrunn Palace, the Wachau Valley, and Melk Abbey.

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Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Berlin and the East of Germany Private Tour –
Monarchs, Poets and Reformers

For more than three centuries the rulers of Brandenburg commissioned the best artists of their time to enhance the Royal residences in and around Berlin with elaborate palaces and gardens.  The resulting works of architecture and landscape gardening are overwhelming.

This tour also visits the stunningly beautiful cities of Leipzig and Dresden in Saxony with their rich cultural heritage, follows Martin Luther’s footsteps in Wittenberg, Wartburg and Erfurt, and visits Weimar, the town of poets and thinkers.  Both regular season and Chrismas versions of this tour are offered.

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Brandenburg Gate, Berlin

Themeparks Kids' Tour –
Disneyland Paris, Europa Park, Alsace and Black Forest

This tour for families with active kids blends the best of themepark thrills and attractions with cool slices of European history.

Disneyland Paris offers more than 50 rides and attractions.  Europa Park in Germany also offers over 50 attractions, and is especially famous for its 12 rollercoasters.  These themeparks have offerings for kids of all ages, so your visits can be tailored to be as active or relaxed as you wish.

Experiences at these constructed modern attractions are balanced by visits to real-world European marvels from long ago.  Tour Versailles Palace in Paris, the centre of power in France until the revolution, visit the immense Reims cathedral completed in 1275, tour a huge 12th century castle atop a mountain in Alsace, stay in an Alsatian village that looks today much as it did in the 16th century, and see how people lived and worked in Germany's Black Forest over the past 400 years.

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Europa Park, Germany

Guided Vacation in Tuscany –
Hilltop Villages and Vineyard Valleys, History and Hospitality  (Private Tour)

Tuscany is renowned for its art, history, and evocative landscape.  Hill-towns gaze across the country-side from on high; the valleys are lined with vineyards, olive groves, and quiet hamlets.

This is a guided holiday, and your guide is the key to making it special.  Your guide is local and knows the places, stories, history, and art in detail – and loves sharing all that with you.  Your guide will pick the best spots, the best food, and make the best of your time.

As a vacation, Guided Vacation in Tuscany: Hilltop Villages and Vineyard Valleys, History and Hospitality strikes a balance between exploring Tuscany, taking it easy, and enjoying its foods and wines.

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San Gimignano

Irish Highlights Private Tour –
The Emerald Isle's Southern Gems and Castles

Experience the legendary charms of the Emerald Isle in all their incredible variety.  Big cities and small villages.  Castles, historic sites, and cottages.  Mountains, midlands, rugged coastal cliffs, and beaches.  Pubs, good food, and traditional songs and entertainment.

Travel to and from Dublin, and tour southern Ireland.  Visit Dublin Castle, the Rock of Cashel, and Blarney Castle.  In County Kerry explore the cliff tops and beaches of the Iveragh Peninsula, and tour the Dingle Peninsula. Go for a nature walk with a trained Ranger at the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare.

 Return to Dublin for sightseeing, relaxation, and a chance to absorb more of Ireland's charming ambience and culture.

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Skellig, Iveragh Peninsula

Portuguese Castles Private Tour –
Garden of Europe with a Glorious Past

Enjoy splendid cities, historic places and castles and historic sites which have unique stories to tell.  Adventurers, seafarers, enormous wealth and discoveries which changed the view and the knowledge of the whole world forever.

Savor beautiful architecture and scenery that ranges from almost tropical to breathtaking cliffs and romantic but wild beaches.  Enjoy delicious seafood, products from the fertile soils and good climate make the Portuguese dishes so special and tasty, and fine wines to accompany them perfectly.

Get ready to discover the country of discoveries, kings, castles and monasteries in their unique style.  Listen to the Portuguese music and enjoy the friendliness and warmth of the Portuguese people, which certainly belong to the best hosts in the world!

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Porto waterfront