Christmas Delight 2016

4 days / 3 nights

only for groups starting 15 people

 

Christmas feeling with real candles shining in the evening. Purchase handcrafted Christmas pyramids directly from the woodcarvers !

 

DAY 1: WEDNESDAY/SUNDAY
Frankfurt – Erfurt – Leipzig (D)

Depart from Frankfurt in the morning and drive eastward to our first stop in Eisenach, dominated by the Wartburg Castle. Visit one of the most important edifices of German history and see the room in which Luther worked and spent the last years of his seclusion. Continue via Weimar to Leipzig where after the check-in at your hotel we will visit one of Germany’s largest Christmas markets. The main attractions are located on the historical market square in front of the ancient town hall. Marvel at the 25 yard Christmas tree with its thousands of lights or stroll along the stalls with handcrafted Christmas gifts from the region. We invite you to a very informal German style snack with Bratwurst and mulled wine at one of the numerous food stalls. Overnight at Hotel Tulip Inn Leipzig o.s.

DAY 2: THURSDAY/MONDAY
Leipzig – Meißen – Dresden (B)

In the morning we continue towards Meißen where we visit one of Germany’s oldest porcelain manufactories. Founded in the 18th century and being continuously in operation since then, the delicate and always handcrafted products are found in royal courts and celebrities homes all around the world. Meißen is proud to be able to restore or remanufacture on demand all ever produced designs as the negative plaster models have been preserved throughout the centuries. See the exhibition hall and the demonstration workshops where all steps of the painting and glazing process are explained to you.  Afterwards we continue onward to Dresden. After a city tour, highlighting its important sights like the restored Frauenkirche, the Semper Opera House, the baroque Zwinger, the Green Vault and many more, we check-in at our hotel. In the evening we will visit the Christmas market in Dresden which is named “Striezelmarkt” according to the local cake speciality, the “Christstollen“ or “Striezel”. Attractions are the more than 16 yard Christmas pyramid and the numerous stalls at which you can taste the Striezel. Overnight at Steigenberger Parkhotel Dresden-Radebeul o.s.

 

DAY 3: FRIDAY/TUESDAY
Dresden – Annaberg – Schneeberg – Plauen (B/ D)

Today after breakfast we are heading mostly along country roads to visit two ancient miner-villages named Schneeberg and Annaberg. These villages are typical for the Erzgebirge (Ore Mountains) and actually home of the German tradition of woodcarving and Christmas pyramids. In former times light – represented by candles – was an important symbol of life and safety for the miners, working in the dark tunnels. Thus, the woodcarvers combined their deep religious beliefs and used candles to illuminate the pyramids with saints and symbols from the holy night like shepherds, donkey and ox. The Christmas market in Annaberg is dating back to 1510. The main attraction of Schneeberg, besides its Christmas market, is St. Wolfgang’s Church with an altar from 1539 carved by Lucas Cranach the Elder. In the afternoon we continue towards Plauen, a city famous for its handcrafted lace. Plauen was founded in 1122 and since the 16th century an important place for cotton manufacturing. A farewell dinner will be served in your hotel.

 

DAY 4: SATURDAY/WEDNESDAY
Plauen – Bamberg – Frankfurt (B)

On the last day of the tour we are travelling through the Franconian forest to the imperial city of Bamberg. The city, founded in the 9th century, has a nicely preserved Old Town which was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site. We will see the cathedral and the former Benedictine abbey of Michaelsberg. Last impressions of German Christmas markets in the pedestrian zone around the cathedral – host of the Bamberg Christmas market. Time for last-minute shopping. Afterwards through the rolling hills of Franconia until we reach our final destination Frankfurt in the late afternoon.