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  • Higlights of Germany rail tour

    Dresden Zwinger

    Highlights of Germany rail tour

    9 nights/10 days
    Berlin – Dresden – Munich – Cologne

    This rail touring holiday enables you to discover the highlights of Germany including stays in Berlin, Dresden, Munich and Cologne. This rail tour offers the visitor an insight into the rich diversity of the nation of Germany. Berlin resounds with historical events and is rich in museums, whilst Dresden is a haven for art and culture lovers. Munich, the capital of Bavaria, also boasts great museums and galleries with a southern flavour in its architectural style, whereas Cologne has echoes of Roman and mediaeval history as the oldest city in Germany.
    This luxury touring holiday by train begins with your arrival in Berlin by rail from London. You spend 3 nights in the German capital, which allows you plenty of time to discover the abundant museums, monuments, buildings and galleries that the city offers. The momentous events of recent history that Berlin has witnessed are ever-present, from the still obvious socialist architecture of Alexanderplatz, which was the hub of post-war East Berlin, the old crossing point of Checkpoint Charlie manned by the allied powers, the Holocaust Memorial located a stone’s throw from the iconic Brandenburg Gate, the Soviet War Memorial and Bebelplatz where books were burned in 1933. Berlin is a vast and imposing city. Travel around by underground (U-Bahn), S-Bahn (above ground local trains), trams and buses (including the famous Berlin double-decker buses) and bike. From Berlin the fascinating, beautiful city of Dresden two hours later where you spend two nights.
    Dresden, the capital of the state of Saxony, is rich in history and is easily explored on foot. Having recovered from wartime damage, Dresden is full of art and culture blending modern architecture with historical buildings. Highlights of your visit to Dresden should be the Zwinger palace, inspired by Versailles, and housing Old Masters and a famous collection of Dresden porcelain. The Frauenkirche is a magnificent Baroque Protestant church, rebuilt after destruction in the Second World War. Your third city in Germany is Munich, the capital of Bavaria, situated within sight of the Alps. Munich is a beautiful city with well-preserved historic buildings, palaces, gardens, imposing monuments and churches. At the heart of the city is the Marienplatz, home to the Old and New Town Halls (watch the famous Glockenspiel). Nearby is the Viktualienmarkt and the Frauenkirche as well as the Michaelskirche, which is the larges Renaissance church north of the Alps. From the centre the city fans out into boulevards, parks, gardens and imposing museums, including the famous Alte Pinakothek and Neue Pinakothek. Munich is also home to popular cultural festivals including the Oktoberfest and Fasching. Your final stop on this Highlights of Germany rail holiday is Cologne, the oldest German city and rich in history dating from the Romans and Charlemagne.
    Sample Prices
    Out by rail, return by rail
    Rail from London and throughout back to London
    Standard class on Eurostar and second class on all other trains
    Stay at 4-star hotels (Myer’s Hotel Berlin and Hotel Torbrau, Munich) with 5-star hotels (Relais and Châteaux Hotel Bülow Palais, Dresden and Excelsior Hotel Ernst, Cologne)
    Prices from £2,130 per person
    Supplement: Standard premier on Eurostar and first class on all other trains £390 per person
    Supplement: Upgrade to a classic room at 5* Hotel de Rome, Berlin £240 per person
    Supplement: Upgrade to a classic room at 5* The Charles Hotel, Munich £185 per person
    What’s included
    Rail travel from London to Berlin and back from Cologne (first class can be booked as a supplement)
    First or second-class travel on all trains
    3 nights’ bed and breakfast in Berlin
    2 nights’ bed and breakfast in Dresden
    2 nights’ bed and breakfast in Munich
    2 nights’ bed and breakfast in Cologne
    What’s not included
    Click on the tabs above to view our suggested day-by-day touring itinerary and to find out more about the hotels featured.

    Highlights of Germany rail tour

    Berlin – Dresden – Munich – Cologne
    DAY ONE: Travel from London to Berlin by rail

    Begin your Highlights of Germany rail touring holiday by travelling from London to Brussels by Eurostar on an early morning departure. With a change of trains in Brussels, continue to Berlin, changing once more in Cologne. You arrive in Berlin just after 7 p.m. and check-in to your hotel for 3 nights.
    You have two days to explore Berlin at your leisure. Berlin has a fascinating history stretching back hundreds of years although it is really for its more recent history that it is best known. Berlin has been at the epicentre of two world wars and the Cold War in the course of the 20th Century and is now the capital of a re-united Germany. Its rich history means that there is a vast amount to discover. Major attractions include The Reichstag, German Parliament, which was built in the 19th century and destroyed in 1933 and Brandenburg Gate, which was inspired by the Acropolis in Athens, and at the head of the long boulevard, Unter den Linden (named after the rows of linden trees planted almost 400 years ago). Another important cultural place of interest is Museum Island where 5 museums are located. These include the Pergamon Museum which houses 3 separate collections; the Museum of Antiquities (from Greece and Rome), the Museum of Near Eastern Antiquities and the Museum of Islamic Art as well as Neues Museum which hosts Egyptian and prehistoric items. Apart from all of the museums that the city has to offer, Berlin is also home to one of the oldest zoos in Germany situated in Tiergarten park. Why not take a stroll by the Landwehr Canal which is seven miles in length which will take you through some of the cities sights including Kreuzberg’s café-lined embankments and part of Tiergarten Park. Berlin is a very large city and covers an area of just under 900 sq kms.
    DAY FOUR: Berlin to Dresden by rail
    After 3 nights in Berlin, you take a direct train to Dresden where you arrive in under 2 hours. You have one full day to explore Dresden.
    DAY FIVE: Dresden
    Spend your time in Dresden exploring the palaces and historical buildings that the city has to offer. Dresden has a prominent creative scene and is often hailed as the most attractive city in Germany. For history enthusiasts, a visit to Frauenkirche and Neumarkt Sqaure is a must. The Frauenkirche was rebuilt after World War Two and has become a symbol of reconciliation. A fine example of well-preserved Renaissance architecture is the Residenzschloss (Royal Palace) situated in the historic town centre. Semper Opera House is visually stunning and is the main venue for Dresden’s Saxon State Orchestra. Another architectural gem to visit is the Zwinger Palace. This palace is built in baroque style after the Palace of Versailles and combines architecture, sculpture and painting. Dresden is known for its porcelain and a national collection can be found in the Zwinger.
    DAY SIX: Dresden to Munich
    Today you travel from Dresden to Munich. After breakfast, board a train from Dresden reaching Munich 5 hours later with an easy change of trains in Halle. You will be in Munich for 2 nights.
    DAY SEVEN: Munich
    Munich, the capital of Bavaria, is situated within sight of the Alps. Munich is an elegant and beautiful, affluent German city with well-preserved historic buildings, palaces, gardens, imposing monuments and churches. At the heart of the city is the Marienplatz, home to the Old and New Town Halls (watch the famous Glockenspiel). Nearby is the Viktualienmarkt and the Frauenkirche as well as the Michaelskirche, which is the largest Renaissance church north of the Alps. From the centre the city fans out into boulevards, parks, gardens and imposing museums, including the famous Alte Pinakothek and Neue Pinakothek. The Residenz palace is a feast of architectural styles combining Renaissance, Baroque, Roccoco and Classicism. There are 130 rooms filled with rich furniture, paintings and tapestries. The English Garden is one of the largest urban gardens in the world and it offers restaurants, teahouse and beer gardens. Further afield you find Baroque palaces such as Nymphenburg, BMW headquarters and the Olympic Park from 1972. Munich is also home to popular cultural festivals including the Oktoberfest and Fasching. If you want to venture out of Munich, why not take a trip to Neuschwanstein Castle (reachable by train in approximately 2 hours).
    DAY EIGHT: Munich to Cologne
    After breakfast in Munich, a direct train will take you to Cologne in just over four hours. Stay in Cologne for 2 nights.
    DAY NINE: Cologne
    You have one full day to explore Cologne at your leisure. Cologne is an important cultural and economic city straddling the River Rhine. Dating from Roman times, Cologne was also a thriving centre in the Middle Ages, from Charlemagne onwards. The Roman-Germanic museum is located near the Cathedral and explains the history of the city from Palaeolithic times until the Middle Ages. It contains precious articles in gold, glass and other treasures. The landmark of the city is the Gothic cathedral dating from 1248 and housing the Shrine of the Three Kings. Nearby are remnants of the city’s mediaeval past with the Rathaus dating from the 12th Century and reconstructed houses in the Old Town. Cologne is also home to numerous museums and galleries, as well as being an important musical centre with several orchestras. Cologne celebrates Carnival boisterously, produces its own beer, is famous for Eau de Cologne and also is renowned for its Christmas market.
    DAY TEN: Cologne to London
    Depart from Cologne just before lunch time and travel to Brussels where you change trains. Check-in for your Eurostar in Brussels which will take you back to London. You arrive in the evening.

    Click the ‘Hotel Information’ tab to find out more about the hotels featured in this touring itinerary.

    Hotel Information
    These are luxury hotels that are featured in this touring holiday. Alternative hotels are available in some destinations – please contact us for full details.

    Hotel de Rome – 5-star

     Hotel de Rome is located in the Mitte district, within walking distance of Museum Island and Brandenburg Gate. The building of the hotel was once home to the headquarters of Dresdner Bank and the jewel vault is now the hotels 20-metre indoor pool. The hotel also enjoys an Italian restaurant, rooftop terrace with views across Berlin and spa area with pool, sauna and steam room.

    Myers Hotel Berlin – 4-star 
     Myers Hotel Berlin is located a short walk from Alexanderplatz and Museum Island in a quiet area. The hotel was built in the late 19th century and maintains a classical style throughout with parquet flooring and historical furniture. There is a small spa, breakfast area and lovely garden to relax in after a day of sight-seeing.

    Bülow Palais – 5-star
    Hotel Bülow Palais, a member of the prestigious Relais and Châteaux, is situated in the Baroque quarter of Dresden, only a short walk from landmarks including Zwinger Palace and Frauenkirche. The hotel enjoys 2 restaurants, a gourmet option and a bistro, as well as a spa area. There are 58 elegantly decorated rooms and suites spread over three floors for you to choose from.

    The Charles Hotel – 5-star

     The Charles Hotel is centrally located by the Alte Pinkaothek and the Lenbachhaus. The hotel was built in 2007 and named after renowned hotelier Charles Forte. Sophia’s Restaurant offers regional seasonal produce facing the Old Botanical Garden whilst the spa area boasts an indoor pool and finish sauna and steam room.
      Hotel Torbrau – 4-star 
     Hotel Torbrau is a family-owned hotel superbly situated at the gateway to Munich’s Old Town. Rooms are comfortable, and the hotel offers a restaurant and restored wine cellar.

    Excelsior Hotel Ernst – 5-star

     This member of ‘Leading Hotels of the World’ is situated in the heart of city, opposite Cologne Cathedral. The hotel boasts 2 restaurants, a Michelin-starred Asian fusion restaurant and a French restaurant. Relax in the piano bar in the evening or make use of the sauna and steam bath in the wellness area.

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