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Austrian Tyrol and Innsbruck

8days from
£1,599*per person

Overview

8 Days - Classic Escorted Tours

A tour experiencing some of the world’s most breath-taking scenery including the Tyrol, Innsbruck, Austria, Bavaria, the Brenner Pass, ancient Roman roads, the Zugspitze and the staggering remains of a Stone Age man. Stunning pink and grey snow-capped mountain peaks; sparklingly clear and torrentially flowing streams; verdant meadows; swathes of densely forested hillsides; shimmering lakes; wooden chalets bedecked with bright flowerboxes; iconic onion shaped church spires. Coupled with a tradition of genuine hospitality, tasty cuisine, excellent local wine, schnapps and great beer, plus an intriguing history stretching back to pre-historic times – all the unmistakable hallmarks of the astonishingly beautiful Tyrol. We stay in the utterly charming alpine village of Seefeld, a perfect spot from which to explore the many and varied highlights of this mountainous province, bisected by the twisting river Inn. We enjoy the culture, imperial history and historic treasures of the region’s capital Innsbruck, marvel at the mountain vistas and the awe inspiring natural beauty of the glaciers and towering summits of the Oetz valley. See Germany’s highest mountain, the Zugspitze and the towering turrets of the fairy-tale castle of Neuschwanstein. Travel by train on one of the world’s oldest steam railways, still using original locomotives from the line’s 1888 opening. Plus venture along the outstandingly beautiful Brenner Pass, guarded at every twist and turn by a host of medieval castles, to explore the melting pot of architecture and language where north meets south in the Südtirol. Once an integral piece of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, culturally the area is unmistakably part of the Tyrol. In its capital Bolzano, you can visit one of the planet’s oldest men - Oetzi the Iceman – a remarkably preserved Stone Age mountain dweller. It is clear there is so much more to the Austrian Tyrol and its surroundings than at first meets the eye. Of course you will adore some of the world’s most outstandingly beautiful Alpine scenery but also discover some real hidden treasures: delightfully medieval Rattenberg, once a silver mining centre, now an atmospheric village; the gorgeous stucco work and gilded altar of Stams Monastery; Innsbruck’s glittering polished copper ‘Golden Roof’ and fabulously decorated Hofkirche founded by the Habsburgs; Merano’s affluent spa town, Belle Époque elegance and a host of other gems just cry out to be explored. You will be enchanted by this amazing blend of gorgeous scenery, crisp mountain air, immense glaciers, and sloping chalet-style wooden buildings in perfect harmony with their stunning surroundings and the host of fascinating towns and places of interest at the heart of one of Europe’s most fascinating regions.

Itinerary

  • Arrival in Seefeld You will arrive at the airport in time to take your flight to Munich or Innsbruck and then transfer to your hotel.
  • Innsbruck After breakfast, we take the short drive along Inn valley to the Tyrolean capital, Innsbruck, for a guided tour of this delightful city. An important trading centre since Celtic times, then capital of a Dukedom before being incorporated in the Habsburg Empire, today your eyes can feast on the historic architecture. There is the famous Golden Roof, the magnificent baroque St Jakob’s cathedral and the former Imperial Palace, once home of Empress Maria Theresa, the Stadtturm belfry tower with its excellent views across the city and Schloss Ambras, the Renaissance castle and palace. Today Innsbruck is delightful - wander its medieval streets, absorb the genteel ambience or just listen to the talented street musicians before we return to Seefeld mid-afternoon. Included experience: Guided walking tour of Innsbruck. Signature experience: In the afternoon, we head out of Innsbruck to visit the Olympic Ski Jump Bergisel. Instead of attempting a death-defying jump, we will ascend to the top of the Ski Jump Tower to visit the Sky restaurant. There, we'll enjoy Austria's traditional coffee, cake, and a glass of sparkling wine, while taking in the stunning panoramic views of the mountains and Innsbruck.
  • Merano The Tyrol was first established as a province in the late 1200s, and today history is very much to the fore as we take the Via Claudia Augusta through the Südtirol. Built by the Romans to enable easier passage through the Alps from Italy, this ancient road is flanked by picture-postcard scenery - rolling hills studded with apple orchards, majestic snow-capped peaks, roaring rivers, shimmering lakes and hillside villages. Our first stop is the pretty spa town of Merano. You can really soak up the atmosphere of the region as you wander through its glorious belle-époque buildings, fine gardens and excellent cafés that line a leafy riverbank walk, all set within a dramatic natural amphitheatre of high mountain peaks. Bolzano After visiting Merano you have a choice of two very different experiences in the town of Bolzano; a walking tour with a local guide or entrance to the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology home of Otzi the Iceman. Our visit to the provincial capital, Bolzano, gives you the opportunity to experience this intriguing mix - Italian coffee and traditional Tyrolian cakes make a great match! Our return to Seefeld takes us along the famous Brenner Pass. The countless ruined castles seemingly guarded every hilltop are evidence that this has been one of the most important trans-alpine trade routes since the Roman Empire. As one vista blends into the next, you'll marvel at the stunning scenery of verdant meadows, forested hillsides and snow-capped peaks of increasing light. Included experience: Guided walking tour of Bolzano or Visit the South Tyrol Museum and visit Merano.
  • Free day in Seefeld Today is yours to relax and enjoy the attractions in and around Seefeld. Try a round of golf at one of Europe's most picturesque courses, take a horse-drawn carriage around Wildsee lake or hire a boat before selecting a village café for a coffee and slice of irresistibly dense chocolate torte. Signature experience: After a morning wandering around Seefeld at leisure, we'll head to a local micro-brewery. The brewery combines modern facilities with Austria's long-standing brewing traditions. We'll enjoy a tour of the brewery and a chance to taste their unique beers, accompanied by a selection of locally-made cheese and charcuterie, locally known as Jauseplatte.
  • Oetztaler Glacier Road Today we drive up the ever-narrowing Oetztal valley to the high mountain resort of Soelden, enjoying ever more scenic views. Despite being almost 5000 feet high, this remote village is dwarfed by surrounding giant snow-capped mountains. Our spectacular drive continues up the Oetztaler Glacier Road into the heart of the mountains for stunning views of glaciers and peaks, ice and snow covered throughout the summer. Breathe deeply for several minutes - the rarefied air deep in your lungs has an almost medicinal quality! Keep your eyes peeled for the mountain wildlife here, including eagles and those delightful indigenous rodents, marmots - hugely entertaining bundles of fur with a spine-tingling whistle. It was near here that Oetzi the Iceman met his fate all those millennia ago, the victim of a Bronze Age arrow, why he was attacked, we shall never know This afternoon we return to the river Inn and a guided tour of the splendid Cistercian monastery at Stams. Founded in 1273, the two majestic onion shaped towers of its superb 17th century Basilica, can be seen from far and wide. This is a truly magnificent building justifiably renowned for its murals, ceiling frescoes, fine Baroque altar and breath-taking gold leaf decoration. Having suffered a turbulent history, including dissolution by the Nazis, Stams has been beautifully restored and is once again a thriving monastic community, welcoming travellers of all nations and beliefs and even baking its own delicious bread! Included experience: Travel the Oetztaler Glacier Road through the Oetztaler Valley and a guided tour of Cistercian monastery at Stams.
  • Neuschwanstein Today’s drive takes you into nearby Bavaria seeing the might of Germany’s highest mountain, the Zugspitze. Some of our journey will be on the fabled ‘Romantic Road’ and the beautiful ‘Deutsche Alpenstrasse’ – the Alpine Road, leading to one of Germany’s most famous monuments and one which seems to typify an image of the country, the castle of the instantly recognisable, and equally unpronounceable, Neuschwanstein! This is the classic ‘fairy-tale’ castle, inspiration for so many stories and allegedly the model for Disney’s ‘Sleeping Beauty’ that has fascinated children the world over. One of Bavaria’s most famous kings, Ludwig, modelling himself on France’s Louis XIV, embarked on an epic castle building programme, eventually bankrupting the then independent country! Indeed, one of his pet projects is the subject of our tour today. Clinging to the side of a vast valley in the most dramatic of settings, Neuschwanstein was constructed with pink granite, a symbol of Ludwig’s self-belief as divinely chosen for kingship and in homage to his idol, Wagner! The architecture inside is equally impressive, with marble everywhere; the design draws freely from different architectural styles, Byzantine, Romanesque and Gothic. Tapestries and intrinsic art decorate the walls and the standard of workmanship is admirable. Included experience: Guided tour of Neuschwanstein Castle.
  • Achenseebahn After breakfast let us head back in time over 100 years, taking a journey to Jenbach where the unmistakable aroma of steam coal, which once graced every British station, fills the air and a narrow-gauge railway winds away into the hills. This is a magically scenic experience on the truly historic Achenseebahn, a metre gauge railway climbing from the Inn valley using rack assistance to surmount the steep gradient. The coal-fired locomotives are amongst the world’s oldest working steam trains still doing the job they were built for in the 19th century, taking tourists at a leisurely pace up to the beautiful Achensee Lake. Re-joining your coach, we journey even further back in time to delightful medieval Rattenberg, the Tyrol’s smallest municipality nestling by the river Inn. The gorgeous medieval stone buildings you see here are the result of growing rich on the proceeds of silver mining, then prospering from nail and glass making. It’s wonderful exploring the narrow streets, discovering the charms of this historic village. The creation of fine glassware is its major occupation today - raw materials fashioned into exquisite pieces by the skilled craftsmen – no wonder this lovely spot has such renown. Climb to the ruined castle for splendid views of the town and its surroundings – there’s also a lift, so don’t miss the fine panorama! Included experience: Take a trip on the Achenseebahn railway, visit to Lake Achensee and visit Rattenburg.
  • Return home Today at the appropriate time you will be returned to the airport for your return flight.

What's Included

Holiday Highlights

  • Stay in picturesque Seefeld in the heart of the astonishing Austrian Tyrol
  • Sightseeing tour of Innsbruck - Royal City of the Habsburgs
  • Experience the Achensee Cog Railway using original 19th century steam locomotives
  • Visit the wonderfully preserved Cistercian Monastery at Stams with its amazingly intricate baroque and gold leaf decoration
  • Choose between a guided walking tour of Bolzano or visit Oetzi the 5,300 year-old mummified iceman, at the museum of Archaeology
  • Visit the former silver mining village of Rattenberg, full of beautiful 15th century buildings
  • Tour the iconic Neuschwanstein Castle - seat of the Bavarian Kings
  • See the immense Oetz valley glaciers
  • This Signature Tour includes all of the above as well as the following:
  • Ascend the Olympic Ski Jump Bergisel for breath-taking, panoramic vistas of Innsbruck and the majestic mountains that surround it and enjoy authentic Austrian coffee and cake
  • Discover the authentic taste of Austrian beer at one of Seefeld's microbreweries. Indulge in their original recipe, made following traditional brewing methods, and savour the delicious flavours
  • Enjoy the more exclusive atmosphere of travelling in a small group with an average of 22 guests

Our Price Includes

  • The price of this holiday is per person based on two people sharing a standard twin room. Single rooms are available at the relevant supplement. The price includes:
  • Return flights
  • Airport departure taxes and transfers
  • Accommodation taxes
  • Seven nights’ in four-star accommodation
  • Daily breakfast and 7 dinners
  • All tours and transport as mentioned
  • The services of a Riviera Travel tour manager
  • Included excursions are a sightseeing guided tour of Innsbruck; entrance and guided tour of Stams Monastery and Neuschwanstein Castle; a journey on the Achensee Cog Steam Railway
  • The opening and closing dates of some mountain passes are dependent on local weather conditions, therefore some of the routes mentioned may be subject to change.
  • Austrian twin beds are generally one base with two mattresses and individual bed linen.
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Dates and Prices

 
September 2024
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Accommodation

Hotel Zum Gourmet -

★★★★

About the hotel Situated in the picturesque town of Seefeld in the heart of the Austrian Alps, just 30 minutes from bustling Innsbruck, the Hotel Zum Gourmet is the perfect place to relax and indulge which enjoying beautiful mountain views.  After a day of exploring your incredible surroundings, the wellness and spa area beckons to help you rest and relax, while the garden is ideal for soaking up the sunshine. All 2024 departures are offered on a Half board basis , with Breakfast and Dinner included. The evening meal will be 4 courses and limited drinks with the meal are also included.  Should you wish to relax at the hotel during the day, the hotel offers daily. light soup at lunchtime and an afternoon slice of cake with coffee or tea. Come evening time, the cosy-yet-modern rooms – many of which have mountain views - are your retreat for the night, ensuring that you’re comfortable throughout your stay and well rested for the next day’s adventures. Location Situated in the picturesque town of Seefeld in the heart of the Austrian Alps, just 30 minutes from bustling Innsbruck.

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Other Information

Holiday code

R238

Holiday provided by Riviera Travel

BOOK WITH CONFIDENCE: change your booking for free, Covid-19 cancellation protection included as standard and 100% protection with ABTA & ATOL. This holiday is sold and operated by Riviera Travel (ABTA V4744, ATOL 3430). These ABTA and ATOL bonds mean that, when you book a Riviera Travel holiday, you can be 100% sure that your money is safe.

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