THE FOOTSTEPS OF MARTIN LUTHER

9 DAYS/7 NIGHTS

Itinerary

Day 1 Depart USA
Embark on your overnight international flight to Berlin, Germany. Meals and refreshments served on board.

Day 2 Arrive Berlin, Germany
Upon arrival, you will be met at the airport by your Central Holidays representative and transferred to your hotel for check-in. This afternoon you have the opportunity to discover and experience Berlin as you explore the city at your own pace.

Day 3 Berlin/City Tour
After breakfast at your hotel, a professionally guided morning sightseeing tour takes you to the Reichstag, which once housed the German Parliament, and Schloss Charlottenburg, the city's former royal residence built in the 17th century. See the Opera, the Schiller Theater, Brandenburg Gate, the "Wall" and the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church. This afternoon there is plenty of time to venture off on your own and take-in enchanting Berlin, the captivating and chic capital of Germany, teeming with artistic allure in its myriad of museums, art galleries and theaters. This evening presents the perfect opportunity to share your day's adventure with new friends during dinner at your hotel. (B,D)

Day 4 Berlin - Wittenberg - Torgau - Leipzig
This morning, following breakfast, we head to Wittenberg, designated as "Lutherstadt" ("Luther Town"). It was here that in 1517 Luther debated with John Eck, leading to a papal ban. Subsequently, Luther posted his 95 theses to the door of the Castle Church, sparking the movement that would become the Reformation. After a view of Wittenberg's key sights, we continue on to Torgau in East Germany's Saxony. Martin Luther declared the buildings in Torgau more beautiful than any from ancient times - as they remain today. It was here at the castle of Torgau that the first Lutheran church was built. With five hundred Renaissance and late- Gothic buildings, Torgau is an architectural gem of international standing. This evening savor a hearty German dinner and overnight in Leipzig. (B,D)

Day 5 Leipzig - Eisleben - Erfurt - Eisenach
Rise and shine to a splendid journey today starting with breakfast at your hotel in Leipzig. Follow in Luther's steps with a visit to the Church of St. Thomas where in 1539 he made his new proclamations. While this is Luther country, Leipzig is also known as birthplace or home of many masterful artists, musicians, and poets, such as Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn, Robert Schumann, Goethe, and Schiller. Today, you will visit the place where Bach served as choirmaster for 25 years and is buried at Thomaskirche. Travel along via Eisleben, where both the house where Luther was born and the house where he died now serve as memorials. With its strong ties to the life of Martin Luther, this historic town and its Luther sites connected by the Luther Trail have been designated UNESCO World Heritage sites. Continue to Erfurt and see the ornate gothic Cathedral and the Augustinian Monastery where Luther was ordained. This evening you will enjoy a night's stay in Eisenach. (B)

Day 6 Eisenach
After breakfast your day of sightseeing begins with a visit to the house where Johann Sebastian Bach was born and a visit to Luther House, which is now a museum dedicated to the life of the Reformer. Your tour continues on to Wartburg Castle, an imposing fortress overlooking the Thuringian Forest that serves as a symbol of German pageantry and offers splendid panoramas of the city. It was here that Luther found refuge in 1522 disguised as "Squire George" and translated the New Testament into German. Venture out this evening at your leisure to tantalize your taste buds with some traditional Thuringian fare such as savory bratwurst and homemade dumplings that are sure to please your palette. Overnight in Eisenach. (B)

Day 7 Eisenach - Marburg - Worms - Frankfurt
Depart from Eisenach after breakfast as you begin a full day of culturally enriching sightseeing. First we head to the medieval city of Marburg, home of Landgrave Philipp the Magnanimous, one of the m ost important supporters of the Reformation who founded the world's first Lutheran University in 1527. This town, acclaimed as a medieval fairytale village, is famous for its magnificent Gothic Cathedral, half-timbered houses, and picturesque cobblestone streets. As the day's adventuring continues, we embark on a Rhine cruise passing castles, vineyards and charming villages. Afterwards, we head on to Worms, one of Germany's oldest cities, where Luther appeared before the Imperial Diet. Here you will tour the Luther Monument and the Church of Our Lady (Liebfraukirche). This evening, enjoy a special farewell dinner, sharing memorable moments of your journey with your travel companions and new friends. Overnight in Frankfurt. (B,D)

Day 8 Frankfurt
After breakfast at your hotel, you are on your own for an exciting day of discovery and fun in Frankfurt! With an ambiance and pulse unlike other German cities, Frankfurt features a distinctive character that fearlessly melds history and modernity -- with the traditional half-timbered buildings, apple wine taverns, cafes, parks and boutiques set perfectly in its medieval old town part of the city to its world-leading financial center teeming with skyscrapers. The city calls out for you to explore. (B)

Day 9 Frankfurt to USA or extend your stay with an optional Munich extension
Wake to the day with breakfast at your hotel and a lifetime of memories to cherish and share. Then embark on your transfer to Frankfurt Airport for your return flight home or extend your stay in Munich. (B)

OPTIONAL MUNICH EXTENSION
Day 9 Frankfurt - Munich via Heidelberg
Enjoy the morning with a hearty breakfast at your hotel before traveling along to Munich today. Along the way, the world-famous Gothic and Renaissance Heidelberg Castle awaits your exploration with its old bridge, church, House of the Knights, and picture-perfect half-timbered houses. After lunch on your own we will head on to Munich where you will savor an included dinner and overnight stay. (B,D)

Day 10 Munich/City Tour - Neuschwanstein Castle - Oberammergau - Munich
The day beckons after breakfast for discovering lively Munich. A panoramic tour of the city shows you amazing sites including: The National Theatre and the Royal Residence, Marienplatz Square with its Old and New town Hall, the church of Saint Peter, the Old and New Art Galleries, the church of Saint Peter, and the celebrated Viktualienmarkt Square with its renowned food stands doling out delicious local fare. Later you will enjoy a visit to the breathtaking Bavarian Neuschwanstein Castle that inspired the storybook castle of Walt Disney World. Then take some time to wander and shop in the charming village of Oberammergau, where the renowned Passion Play is performed by locals every ten years since 1634. (B)

Day 11 Munich to USA
After breakfast at your hotel, say Auf Wiedersehen to Germany and get ready to share the unforgettable memories as you transfer to Munich Airport for your return flight home. (B)

(B) - Breakfast, (D) - Dinner
Hotel and Itinerary are subject to change.

Includes

  • ROUND TRIP AIR TRANSPORTATION - From New York, JFK
  • FIRST-CLASS ACCOMMODATIONS - Hotel accommodations for 7 nights
  • SUPERB CUISINE - 10 included meals consisting of 7 buffet breakfasts and 3 dinners
  • SIGHTSEEING TOUR PROGRAM- Sightseeing, including local guide and all entrance fees as per day to day plan
  • PROFESSIONAL TOUR DIRECTOR - Assistance of a professional Tour Director for the entire length of the tour upon arrival in Berlin
  • DELUXE MOTORCOACHES - Touring by private deluxe air-conditioned motorcoach
  • BAGGAGE HANDLING AND TRANSFERS - Baggage handling for one piece of checked luggage outside of the airport
OPTIONAL MUNICH EXTENSION TOUR FEATURES
  • FIRST-CLASS ACCOMMODATIONS - Hotel accommodations for 2 nights
  • SUPERB CUISINE - 3 included meals consisting of 2 buffet breakfasts and 1 dinner
  • SIGHTSEEING TOUR PROGRAM - Sightseeing, including local guide and all entrance fees as follows: Tour of Heidelberg Castle, panoramic city tour of Munich, tour to Neuschwanstein Castle and Oberammergau
  • PROFESSIONAL TOUR DIRECTOR - Assistance of a professional Tour Director for the entire length of the tour
  • DELUXE MOTORCOACHES - Touring by private deluxe air-conditioned motor coach
  • BAGGAGE HANDLING AND TRANSFERS - Baggage handling for one piece of checked luggage outside of the airport

Notes

DESTINATION HIGHLIGHTS
  • Historical places of Martin Luther's life and ministry
  • Luther cities of, Erfurt,Eisenach, Eisleben, and Torgau
  • Major Reformation sites
  • Cosmopolitan Berlin
  • Reichstag, Brandenburg Gate & Berlin Wall
  • Famous Castle Church - Wittenberg
  • Historic Leipzig
  • St. Thomas Church, Bach's resting place
  • Augustinian Monastery
  • Luther House and Wartburg Castle
  • Bach's birth house
  • Medieval Marburg
  • Scenic cruise on the Rhine River
  • Luther Monument & Church of Our Lady, Worms
  • Frankfurt, the city of contrasts
  • Bavarian capital of Munich
  • Charming Heidelberg
  • Enchanted Neuschwanstein Castle
  • World famous Oberammergau