With local experts discover charming villages, castles and forests in Austria, Germany and France. Visit local farms and cheesemakers along the first trans-regional cheese trail in Bregenzerwald. Step into settings out of a Brothers Grimm fairy tale in century-old villages. Walk in the Black Forest with a biologist and learn about the native flora and fauna of Germany's biggest nature park. Just across the Rhine River lies Alsace, perhaps the most unusual of all French provinces, where you will experience a wine tasting and sample local, organic food on a winery with a tradition of cultivation and production extending back to the 17th century.
Day 1: Arrival day
Transfer from the airport to Hittisau in Austria.
Day 2: The Bregenzerwald Cheese Trail, Austria
This cheese trail, (did we mention it’s unique in the world), features alpine dairy farms, alpine and private cheese manufacturers, charming old farmhouses that are open to visitors and specialty stores selling cheese and other regional products and crafts. There are shops and tourist facilities to make for a comfortable, highly enjoyable visit. Hike this trail and learn about the world of cheese in Austria.
Day 3: Mainau Island, Germany
Visit the island in Lake Constance. Known for its exotic flowers, the beauty of this island is apparent the moment you set foot on it. Learn about the history and botanical legacy, and explore the local fare.
Day 4: Rhine Falls, Switzerland
On the way to the Black Forest visit the breathtaking sight of the Rhine Falls. Fed by the Rhine River, this is the largest waterfall in Europe!
Day 5: Freiburg, Germany
Join a guided tour of Freiburg, the capital of the Black Forest region. Explore the city with its famous cathedral, sidewalk canals, and charming old town.
Day 6: The Heimatpfad Walk, Hinterzarten Bog, Germany
Walk along the Heimatpfad, a high Black Forest path known as the "local history” path. In Hinterzarten you will take a non-strenuous path through a bog while learning about the wildlife and bog ecosystem.
Day 7: The Feldberg Nature Reserve, Germany
Today you will walk in the Feldberg Nature Reserve, located on the highest peak of a broad, low mountain range several kilometres long. Continue to Lake Titisee where you will take a leisurely boat ride on the largest natural lake in the Black Forest.
Day 8: Transfer to the Alsace region of France
On your way to Alsace, visit the Badberg Nature Reserve and the surrounding vineyards of this volcanic area, rich with thermophile flora and fauna.
Day 9: Colmar, France
Walk through the charming historical centre of Colmar including the "Little Venice” quarter - which happens to be one of the largest pedestrian zones in Europe.
Day 10: Castles and vineyards of Alsace
Visit Haut-Koenigsbourg Castle, which was built in the 12th century and has witnessed eight centuries of European conflicts and rivalries between lords, kings and emperors. In the afternoon walk along the local vineyards and enjoy a wine tasting.
Day 11: World War One battlefields, France
Visit Le Linge, a French battlefield where a major conflict of WWI took place. In the museum you will find relics of war found on site from both French and German forces.
Day 12: Zurich, Switzerland
Transfer to Zurich, explore the city on a guided tour and enjoy some shopping afterwards.
Day 13: Departure day
Transfer to the airport and departure.
April to June and September to October
10 to 12 days