September 12, 2017
|Duration:||14 Days / 13 Nights|
|Single Room Supplement:||Waived|
This trip will be operated on behalf of Gutsy Women Travel (GWT) clients by award winning Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT). There are 5 Twin bedded rooms and 6 single accommodations rooms with no single supplement blocked on this trip. Once single rooms are sold out, women can secure a guaranteed share in a twin room accommodation. This trip is opened up to OAT clients & could be co-ed. However the group size will always be capped at no more than 16 participants. There will be a dedicated OAT licensed, local travel director assigned to this GWT group block departure.
DAY 1 - Fly to Prague, Czech RepublicDepart the U.S. today on your overnight flight to Prague, Czech Republic.
DAY 2 - Arrive Prague, Czech RepublicUpon your arrival in Prague, an OAT representative will meet you at the airport and assist you to your hotel. You'll get to know your Trip Leader and small group, including those arriving from the Berlin & Dresden trip extension, during a short orientation walk around the neighborhood and a Welcome Drink. This evening, enjoy a Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant.
DAY 3 - Explore Prague CastleAfter breakfast, we'll set off on a guided walking tour of Prague, a magical city nestled in a bend of the Vltava River, whose spires have endured to create one of Europe's most romantic skylines. While other European capitals were leveled during World War II, Prague survived virtually intact. Among the structures to remain remarkably undamaged was Prague's great landmark, Prague Castle—the world's largest ancient castle complex and still the seat of political power. Built during the ninth century, Prague Castle has evolved over the centuries, blending Romanesque, Gothic, and even Spanish architectural styles. Today, it is a sprawling complex of breathtaking enormity and a symbol of Czech unity. After concluding our tour in Old Town Square and Charles Bridge, Prague's iconic statue-adorned structure spanning the Vltava River, we'll enjoy an included lunch at a local restaurant, followed by free time. Perhaps you'll visit Josefov (Prague's Jewish Quarter). The Prague Ghetto and vibrant Jewish community have contributed to Prague's character since the tenth century. This evening, dinner is on your own.
DAY 4 - Explore Prague • Optional Ruckl Crystal Factory tourToday begins with an enlightening discussion about some of the successes and controversies relating to the development of Czech statehood and democracy. Then, we'll discover the Prague metro before setting out for a cruise along the Vltava River. After the cruise, you may take advantage of an optional tour that features a tour of the 300-year-old Ruckl Crystal Factory, which includes lunch at a local restaurant in the town of Nizbor and returns to Prague in the late afternoon. Please note: If this day falls on a Sunday, travelers will be offered an alternate optional excursion to Sychrov Castle. Travelers not taking the optional tour will have lunch on their own and time to pursue individual discoveries in Prague. Perhaps you'll choose to walk along Baroque streets of Mala Strana, the "Little Quarter" that is linked to Prague's Old Town (Stare Mesto) by the Charles Bridge. Originally an eighth-century market town, today Mala Strana is a quaint neighborhood of cobbled streets, boutiques, and Baroque churches and palaces. Dinner on your own this evening in Prague.
DAY 5 - Travel to Cesky Krumlov • Visit Vojna MemorialAfter breakfast, we begin our overland journey to Cesky Krumlov, stopping along the way to visit the Vojna Memorial. Located in the middle of a forest, Vojna was originally built by German POWs after World War II as a labor camp to work the nearby uranium mines. With the communist takeover in 1948, Vojna transitioned into a notorious forced labor camp for political prisoners. Today, the Vojna Memorial is a powerful reminder of the many Czech victims of the communist regime. Afterwards, we'll stop for lunch at a restaurant in Pisek, a picturesque Bohemian town founded in the 13th century on the banks of the Otava River. Upon arrival in Cesky Krumlov, we'll check in to our hotel and then head out to a local restaurant for dinner.
DAY 6 - Explore Cesky Krumlov • Rafting on Vltava RiverAfter breakfast, a local guide will accompany us on a walking tour of Cesky Krumlov, one of Europe's most picturesque locales. Nestled inside a narrow loop of the Vltava River, this romantic town with its hilltop castle was once a wealthy trading center and a favorite of European nobility. Today, its confection of red-gabled roofs, elegant bridges, and storybook castle lures lovers of history, culture, and architecture alike. Established in 1250 by the Lords of Krumlov, the 14th through 16th centuries brought a period of great splendor to Cesky Krumlov, which became a stop along one of the main trading routes to Italy. We'll walk the winding, cobbled streets to admire the splendidly preserved historic buildings of the medieval town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and ascend to the top of the hill to visit Cesky Krumlov Castle, a Renaissance jewel that encompasses more than 40 buildings, courtyards and gardens, a castle brewery—and live bears who roam the castle's moat. We'll also visit the recently opened Castle Museum, which features precious artifacts previously hidden in castle depositories. After an included lunch at a restaurant overlooking Old Town Square, we'll ride to the country town of Vetrni, where we begin a peaceful rafting excursion along the Vltava River. We'll paddle about three miles on the gentle waters of the river, with six travelers and an instructor (who will point out highlights as we meander through the countryside) in each raft. The shallow rapids along this stretch of the Vlata are controlled by concrete weirs that cross the river, and it is possible to disembark the raft and walk around these obstacles if you wish. This trip is easy enough for the novice but passes through countryside that will charm the more experienced rafters as well. Dinner is on your own this evening in Cesky Krumlov. Please note: Fall departures may not offer the rafting excursion, and adverse weather conditions may preclude rafting at any time of year. When this is the case, we’ll explore a nearby graphite mine or hike to the castle ruins of Divci Kamen instead.
DAY 7 - Visit Vyssi Brod Monastery • Treetop Hike at Lipno LakeAfter breakfast, we'll journey a short distance outside Cesky Krumlov to visit Vyssi Brod Monastery, a Cistercian monastery with roots that stretch back to the middle of the 13th century. Considered the spiritual center of South Bohemia, the monastery also features a richly decorated library that dates back to the Baroque period. Then, we'll head to Lipno Lake, a body of water created by damming the Vltava River. Here, we'll enjoy a "treetop hike" along a long wooden walkway for magnificent views of the surrounding Sumava countryside, the massive lake, and the distant Alps. After our hike, we'll enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before returning to Cesky Krumlov. The rest of the day is at leisure, with dinner on your own.
DAY 8 - Cesky Krumlov • Budvar Brewery in Ceske Budejovice • Explore Trebon • SlavoniceAfter breakfast, we depart Cesky Krumlov for an overland journey to Slavonice. En route, we'll stop in southern Bohemia's regional capital, Ceske Budejovice, to visit the famous Budweiser Budvar Brewery. While the history of brewing in Ceske Budejovice dates back to the 13th century, Budweiser Budvar was founded here in 1895 (the U.S. brewer chose the name Budweiser in 1876 because it was synonymous for superior beer). After our brewery tour, we'll stop in Trebon, an ancient walled village set among rolling hills and ancient fish ponds. Established in the middle of the twelfth century, Trebon has been a popular center of Czech fish farming since the Middle Ages and remains a picturesque spa town. There is also a brewery here that has been producing Bohemia Regent lager since 1379. We'll stroll through the magnificent park surrounding Trebon's Rennaisance-era chateau, and visit the town center to admire the series of pastel-colored burghers' houses and ancient fortifications. After lunch at a local restaurant, we'll stop in Jindrichuv Hradec, a charming 13th-century town with a huge castle just outside its Old Town. We'll visit the castle museum, which features the world's largest working mechanical Nativity scene; and the Gobelin Museum, to see its tapestry collections. We arrive in Slavonice and enjoy a festive dinner at our hotel's restaurant complete with traditional Moravian music.
DAY 9 - Explore Slavonice • Home-Hosted DinnerAfter breakfast, we'll embark on a walking tour of Slavonice, a charming village near the Austrian border whose streets have changed little since the 13th century. Slavonice is renowned for its collection of Gothic and Renaissance homes adorned with sgraffito wall designs, many dating from the 14th to 16th centuries. Our stroll through the well-preserved town center will reveal an especially fine example of 16th-century wall paintings depicting scenes from the Apocalypse. After a light lunch at our hotel featuring a tasting of local specialties, you'll have free time to further explore the medieval streets. Then, we'll embark on a discovery walk in the surrounding region, which will take us to the imposing 13th-century ruins of Landstejn Fortress, and some of the camouflaged World War II-era concrete bunkers in the area. Built between 1935 and 1938, the bunkers were meant to guard the Czechoslovak border against an invasion by Hitler, but after the war—and during the ensuing Cold War—the fortifications were used to prevent Czechoslovak citizens from escaping to the West. After working up a hearty appetite, we'll visit a nearby village and learn how to prepare some local specialties during a cooking class. Our hosts will show us around their garden and then we'll settle in for genuine Czech hospitality as dinner guests in the home of a local family.
DAY 10 - Slavonice • Visit Trebic and Lednice • Bratislava, SlovakiaAfter breakfast, we'll begin our journey to Bratislava, capital of Slovakia. En route, we'll stop for a visit to Trebic, an ancient Moravian city that is home to one of Europe's best preserved Jewish ghettos—a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Jewish and Christian cultures co-existed here from the Middle Ages up to the 20th century, and our stroll will take us to Trebic's ancient synagogue. Then, we'll enjoy lunch at a local restaurant in Lednice. Over the centuries, the region surrounding Lednice (and its twin town of Valtice) has been carefully landscaped with a series of woodlands, lakes, streams, gardens, and tree-lined chateaux—all of which have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We'll explore Lednice Castle, an immense structure built in the Neo-Gothic style; and then we'll get to wander among the tropical plants in the Castle's original iron-framed greenhouse. After checking into our hotel in Bratislava, our Trip Leader will take us on a brief orientation walk of our surroundings. Dinner is on your own this evening.
DAY 11 - Explore BratislavaJust as in the Czech Republic, the Velvet Revolution spelled the end of communism for Slovakia, a densely forested country with towering mountains in Central Europe's heartland. Its capital, Bratislava, is situated along the Danube in Slovakia's southwestern tip, close to the border with Hungary and Austria. Our morning walking tour will focus on Bratislava's compact Old Town, home to a variety of 14th- and 15th-century structures that include the Old Town Hall, the Neo-classical Archbishop's Palace, and St. Martin's Cathedral, a Gothic coronation church where several Hungarian Habsburg kings and queens were crowned. As a stark contrast to Bratislava's vestiges of imperial grandeur, we'll visit a section of town featuring blocks of housing projects that serve as symbols of the days of communist-era oppression. We'll also enjoy a glimpse of life in contemporary Slovakia when we visit a local home for coffee and refreshments. Then, lunch is on your own, followed by an afternoon at leisure—perhaps an opportunity to check out the sweeping views of the city from the ramparts of Bratislava Castle, whose origins stretch back to the days of the Roman Empire. The region surrounding Bratislava is renowned for its quaint villages and the vineyards on the fertile slopes of the Little Carpathians, so this evening we'll journey outside the city to enjoy dinner and a wine-tasting in the cellar of a local vintner.
DAY 12 - Bratislava • Explore Roman ruins at Carnuntum • Budapest, HungaryAfter breakfast, we depart Bratislava and begin our journey to Budapest, Hungary. En route, we'll stop at the Roman city of Carnuntum, which began as a Roman army camp along the Danube River in what is now Austria. At its peak, some 50,000 people lived here, and after 1,700 years Carnuntum's ancient glory is currently being recreated from the site's extensive ruins. Crossing into northwestern Hungary, we'll stop for an included lunch in Gyor, an ancient city situated at the confluence of the Danube, Rába, and Rábca rivers. We'll also take a stroll to admire the Baroque and Neo-classical structures in Gyor's pedestrian-only historic core before continuing to Budapest. Dinner is included in a local restaurant this evening in Budapest.
DAY 13 - Explore Budapest • Evening Danube River cruiseAfter breakfast, we embark on morning city tour of the undisputed "Queen of the Danube." Budapest is divided by the beautiful river, with Pest (the left bank) to its east, and Buda (the right bank) to its west. We'll see the medieval building at Buda's Castle Hill, where a massive castle complex and its ramparts high above the Danube have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After lunch on your own in one of the city's covered markets, you'll have the afternoon at leisure to explore on your own. You may wish to head to the turreted Fisherman's Bastion for panoramic views of the city, or spend some time at the famous Chain Bridge, which was first opened in 1849 to link the two provincial towns of Buda and Pest, and now stands as a symbol of Hungarian liberty. Or, in Heroes' Square, you can witness a memorial to the great leaders in Hungary's history that is dominated by the great Millennium Monument. After time for dinner on your own, we'll gather for an hour-long evening cruise on the Danube River—an opportunity to witness Budapest's monuments brilliantly illuminated, from Pest's Danube Promenade to the Buda Castle District.
DAY 14 - Explore Budapest • Visit SzentendreAfter breakfast, we'll take a subway ride to one of Europe's oldest legislative bodies, the imposing riverside Hungarian Parliament Building. Here, we'll learn about the Hungarian Uprising of 1956, a time when students and workers took to the streets of Budapest in the first major threat to Soviet control of the region. Then, we'll board a coach and head outside the city to the picturesque town of Szentendre. We'll enjoy an included lunch at a local restaurant, enjoy time at leisure to admire the Baroque buildings and well-kept merchant homes encircling the Main Square, or simply wander the winding, cobblestone streets to discover Szentendre's wealth of architectural treasures. After returning to Budapest, enjoy a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant with lively Hungarian Gypsy music to celebrate our Bohemian journey.
DAY 15 - Return to U.S. or begin post-trip extensionAfter breakfast, transfer to the airport for your return flight home. Or, begin your post-trip extension to Vienna, Austria.
In order to qualify for the GWT Past Traveler Discount of 5% on the land portion of the trip, you must advise the reservation specialist at time of depositing on your 2017 trip which GWT trip you traveled on (date/name of departure and year) over the past 5 years.
Please note: A $25 documentation fee will be added to the final payment for this trip.
We limit our trips to small groups so we suggest you deposit early to guarantee your spot. View information regarding Air Travel & Transfers here.
Please note this departure is not exclusive to women but will be comprised of Gutsy Women Travel participants co-sharing the overall trip capacity with members of OAT resulting in a larger group size compared to the traditional Gutsy Women Travel trips designed exclusively for women.
This trip will be operated on behalf of Gutsy Women Travel (GWT) clients by award winning Overseas Adventure Travel (OAT). There are 5 Twin bedded rooms and 6 single accommodations rooms with no single supplement blocked on this trip. Once single rooms are sold out, women can secure a guaranteed share in a twin room accommodation. This trip is designed for GWT clients however if room block is not sold by 120 days prior to departure date, the trip can be opened up to OAT clients and could be co-ed. However the group size will always be capped at no more than 16 participants. There will be a dedicated OAT licensed, local travel director assigned to this GWT group block departure.
Single Room - one person, traveling solo in single accommodation
Double Room - two people, traveling together in same accommodation
Shared Room - one person, traveling solo who would like to share with another passenger and pay the per person "Double" price
Air travel arrangements for Gutsy Women's trip participants are made independently as most women are traveling from various gateway cities within or outside North America. Gutsy Women Travel includes a group transfer (if travelers purchase airfare from our operator) or individuals can book private transportation if desired.
For further information and reservations call (866) IM GUTSY (464 8879) or
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Please note: Every effort has been made to produce this information accurately. We reserve the right to correct errors. All prices are subject to change. Departure dates and prices shown may be updated several times daily, and apply to new bookings only.