Nearly 400 years ago the history of the Passion Play began in the charming, picturesque village of Oberammergau, Germany. In 1633 the villagers promised to perform the suffering, death and resurrection of Christ every ten years and now we have the chance to be part of that promise! Our exploration of Germany will allow us to step into a storybook at the idyllic, fairy tale Schloss Neuschwanstein, visit a medieval walled city built in the middle of a giant crater created by an asteroid that hit 15 million years ago, and walk the cobblestone streets past half-timbered houses of Michelstadt, a hidden gem in Germany’s Odenwald. So much to see, so much to do, let’s get started!
Day One: Arrive in Frankfurt
With much anticipation, we’ll meet at the Newark Airport for our non-stop flight to Frankfurt, Germany! *Always included is an introductory walking tour in each destination to help familiarize yourself with our new surroundings.
Day Two: Dinkelsbuhl
This morning we arrive at the Frankfurt Airport all refreshed from a good night’s sleep on the plane (haha!). From here we are whisked away through scenic rural Bavaria dotted with lovely, enchanting towns to sleepy Dinkelsbuhl. Once you set eyes on this fairy tale dream town, you’ll fall in love. Enjoy the afternoon here wandering the medieval streets and taking in all the history surrounding you.
Days Two - Four: Nordlingen
Now we travel further down the Romantic Road to another lesser known and equally spectacular village, Nordlingen. This ancient medieval walled town filled with half-timbered houses feels completely authentic with its architectural antiquity and absence of crowds. We’ll be entranced by the ambiance as we stroll the cobblestone streets, walk along the covered sentry’s walk atop the medieval wall and climb to the top of the Danielturm, part of late Gothic 15th century Georgskirche where the watchman’s nightly call emerges.
What makes this village even more spectacular is the fact that it’s built right in the middle of a crater made by an asteroid that crashed to Earth 15 million years ago. An included visit to the Riesenkrater Museum housed in a converted 15th century barn will offer insight into the geology of the impact including the presence of compacted quartz that has been mined and used over the centuries to create what the town looks like today. We’ll enjoy 3 nights and 2 full days here to enjoy at your own pace to explore every nook and cranny this magnificent village has to offer.
Day Five: Oberammergau
Today get ready for the experience of a lifetime! We say goodbye to Nordlingen and make our way to Oberamergau where we’ll not only be mesmerized by the quaint, picture perfect village but also by tomorrow’s performance of the much-anticipated Passion Play.
As we step into Oberamergau, set in a scenic valley surrounded by the Ammergau Alps, you’ll have the afternoon to spend on your own exploring the historic cobblestone streets carved along elaborately painted buildings and extraordinary woodcarvings. Don’t miss the jaw dropping frescos at the Parish Church St. Peter and Paul and watching art in the making at Pilatushaus. Tonight, we enjoy an included dinner in the ambiance of this amazing town.
Day Six: The Passion Play!
We awaken with a trip to the top of a mountain! Before our day long play performance, a ride in an historically nostalgic cable car will transport us over 5000 feet to the top of The Laber. Panoramic views await, as if peering off a balcony, with a vista of distant Alps, lakes, and perhaps even a glimpse of Munich.
Once back on lower ground, it’s time to immerse ourselves in the Passion Play. The play will be held on an open-air stage with roofed seating and will be broken up into two parts, with an included dinner after part one. So, sit back and enjoy every amazing minute!
Day Seven: Neuschwanstein Castle
This morning we travel into a storybook during our visit to Neuschwanstein, the castle of a fairy-tale king. “Mad King Ludwig” an atypical ruler who withdrew from his day-to-day duties in favor of extravagant artistic and architectural projects, created this castle partially inspired by the world-renowned composer Richard Wagner. The combination of architecture and idyllic setting atop a craggy hill overlooking the Hohenschwangau valley makes this castle step right out of an imaginary world. At every step we’ll be amazed by its wonder.
We’ll even get the opportunity to walk on the Amazing Marienbruke! (Mary’s Bridge)
Days Seven - Nine: Michelstadt
After our visit to the fairy tale castle, we make our way to the fairy tale village of Michelstadt, a town so chocolate box perfect, it almost doesn’t seem real. One of the oldest towns located in the heart of the Odenwald nature park, beautiful, historic Michelstadt will delight your senses and your soul.
In our time here we’ll explore the breathtaking architecture surrounding the Marktplatz and the palace like baroque Lowenhof, feel the depths of history emanating from the 15th century Rathaus, while hearing the soothing sounds of water falling from a spectacular renaissance fountain. The picturesque Castle Michelstadt is not to be missed with its theft tower, Diebsturm, dating from the 13th century and surrounding serene park. And of course, there’s the typical smattering of half-timbered houses including an old apothecary from 1557 and several cafes and restaurants that are perfect for sitting and taking in all the wonders Michelstadt possesses.
Day Nine: Erbach im Odenwald
We have 3 nights and 2 full days to enjoy here with an optional day trip to nearby Erbach im Odenwald on the second day. Erbach is well known as Ivory Town, thanks to Count Franz who brought the art of ivory carving to the village helping the town move toward prosperity. If you’re so inclined, the German Ivory Museum is open to visit.
You’ll find this village has a charm all its own with its impressive Schloss Erbach, beautifully decorated sandstone canal that wraps around the downtown and blooming Lustgarten with cafes to sit and enjoy the sunshine. During our time here we’ll have a tour of the palace then have time on your own to have lunch and explore this enchanting village.
Today we board our flight and say goodbye to beautiful Bavaria and welcome back to home sweet home, so thankful for our Germanic brush with history.
Pricing & Flight Details:
Roundtrip air transportation is provided by United Airlines. A surcharge will apply if United Airlines increases the price of its airfare. One piece of luggage per person (baggage fee by United is not included) and one small carry-on are permitted.
A valid government issued picture ID is required to board the plane.
: Flight # departs Newark at approx. 7 PM and arrives in Frankfurt at approx 8 AM.
: Flight # departs Frankfurt at approx 11 AM and arrives in Newark at approx 2 PM.
Approximate Price per person is $3,995 Twin & $4,495 Single. No reservations accepted without a deposit of $500 per person. Make checks payable to Group Tours & Travel and mail to the included address. Final payment is due April 30, 2022. Deposits are fully refundable if cancellation occurs on or before April 30, 2022. There are no refunds if cancellation occurs after April 30, 2022. Travel protection/cancellation coverage is available and highly recommended (approximately 10% of the total cost of the tour) but not included. One piece of luggage per person and one carry-on are permitted. Group Tours is not responsible for any delays, cancellations, injuries or circumstances beyond its control and reserves the right to change this itinerary. All trip components are subject to change in accordance with Government, State and Local guidelines and/or mandates. This tour will run rain or shine.
Group Tours & Travel
1710 E. Lancaster Ave. #319 Paoli, PA 19301