Italian Lakes, Tuscany & the Oberammergau Passion Play

22 Day Small Group Tour from Milan to Munich with Albatross

Book online and enjoy exclusive savings on Albatross 22 Day Italian Lakes, Tuscany & the Oberammergau Passion Play. Discover the delightful ports and villages that litter Lake Maggiore and Lake Garda, explore Genoa, seductive Portofino and the famous Cinque Terre. Visit the fantastic Ferrari museum, dine at a Tuscan more

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4 Star
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Guided Tour
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Guided Tour
Trip Style
Scenic / Cultural
Trip Style
Scenic / Cultural
Countries Explored:
Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Germany
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1 Stresa welcome
Commencing in central Milan at 2pm we will transfer you to Stresa on wonderful Lake Maggiore, where you will stay the next four nights. Join us tonight for a welcome drink before dinner in a local restaurant. This is an ideal chance to meet, and get to know, your Tour Manager and fellow travellers.  (D) Stay: Regina Palace Hotel or similar
2 Scenic train journey to Locarno and visit Ascona
This morning we drive north to Domodossola at the foot of the Italian Alps. Here we board the famous Centovalli Express train which runs through the ‘Hundred Valleys' to Locarno. Relaxing in the panoramic carriages, we pass over numerous bridges and through numerous tunnels, travelling beside waterfalls, villages and vineyards. A spectacular journey! Arriving in Locarno we will make a short stop in the grand square before boarding our coach to visit nearby Ascona. Lunchtime will be at leisure in this delightful lakeside town. As a finalé, we follow the scenic route home hugging the shores of Lake Maggiore all the way back to Stresa. Dinner tonight is in your hotel. (B/D)
3 Island of Isola Bella and lakeside Orta San Giulio
Boarding our private boat we visit Lake Maggiore's famous island of Isola Bella where we have included entrance and a guided tour of the palatial Borromeo villa and gardens, which dominate the island. The villa boasts Murano glass chandeliers, gobelin-covered chairs, intricate tapestries and paintings. The spectacular formal gardens rise behind the ornate villa, with patterned flower beds falling in terraces, with statues and ornamental stonework completing the Italianate style. Lunchtime is at leisure back in lakeside Stresa. Later this afternoon we visit the delightful town of Orta San Giulio beside the beautiful, and some say most romantic, of all the lakes – Lake Orta. Your evening is at leisure to discover a local trattoria for dinner. (B)
4 Cruise on Lake Como to Bellagio
This morning we drive to Lake Como where we follow the western shore of the lake to Caddenabbia. Here we board our private boat and enjoy a cruise on Lake Como, past a number of striking lakeside villas, to delightful Bellagio. This beautiful town is situated at the tip of the peninsula separating the lake's two southern arms, with the Alps visible across the lake to the north. It's time to relax in this delightful town which boasts peaceful villas and gardens nestled by the lakeside, elegant shops and walkways plus stylish al fresco dining at its very best. Your evening is at leisure back in the lakeside town of Stresa. (B)
5 Explore medieval Genoa
Bidding farewell to Lake Maggiore we drive south to the coastal region of Liguria, arriving around midday in Genoa. Once the capital of a naval empire, Genoa boasts the largest intact medieval city centre in the whole of Europe. Here we are joined by a local guide to enjoy a walking tour through the city's old heart, with its pedestrian shopping malls, beautiful churches and squares, and nearly 50 UNESCO Listed palaces and stately homes. We have included a guided visit to the opulent Royal Palace. (B/D) Stay: Grand Hotel Savoia or similar
6 Santa Margherita Ligure, Portofino and Abbey of San Fruttuoso
We spend the morning at leisure in the beautiful harbour town of Santa Margherita Ligure with its elegant shops, boutiques and cafés that litter the port. Later we take a boat along the rugged Liguria coastline to the world famous harbour of Portofino. Delightfully set in a tiny bay, overlooked by the church and castle high above, this old port makes a perfect afternoon stop. Later, we continue around the coast to visit the Abbey of San Fruttuoso, which is only accessible by boat. This evening your coach is going to the delightful seaside town of Arenzano. Join us if you choose! We suggest a stroll along the promenade before you discover a local restaurant for dinner. (B)
7 Cruise the coastline of the Cinque Terre
A delightful day is planned as we explore the famous Cinque Terre. The name means ‘five lands' and comes from the five unspoilt fishing villages that cling to the cliffs, overlooking the sea. Our first stop of the day will be in the pretty port of Monterosso. From here we catch a boat and cruise along the spectacular coastline of the Cinque Terre to visit the delightful villages of Vernazza and Portovenere. Arriving in La Spezia we board our coach and travel to Tuscany. We stay the next four nights in the typically ‘Tuscan' town of Lucca – a medieval walled city, filled with palaces, churches and ancient houses. Dinner tonight is in a local restaurant. (B/D) Stay: San Luca Palace or similar
8 Leaning Tower of Pisa and ‘My Time’ in Lucca
This morning we visit nearby Pisa with its famous Leaning Tower, Cathedral and Baptistery in the magnificent Piazza dei Miracoli. Your afternoon has been left entirely free to explore delightful Lucca. Perhaps visit the former home of Puccini, where he wrote ‘Turandot'. Take a bike ride or a stroll around the entire town on top of the broad city walls. As a highlight this evening we drive into the picturesque Tuscan countryside to visit a local olive oil farmhouse estate. Before dinner is served in the Osteria, we spend time amongst the olive groves and enjoy an olive oil tasting accompanied by Tuscan wines and a selection of antipasto including local meats, cheese and bread – all specialities of this region. (B/D)
9 Florence sightseeing and ‘My Time’
Today is dedicated to nearby ‘Firenze' (Florence). A local guide will bring to life this truly beautiful city which is otherwise known as the ‘Cradle of the Renaissance'. Your tour starts with a visit to the famous Accademia Gallery, home to Michelangelo's ‘David' and numerous other extraordinary Italian, Florentine and Renaissance works of art. We see the Duomo and take in the magnificent statues in the Piazza della Signoria. Your afternoon is entirely free to enjoy Florence at your own pace. Espresso coffee on Piazza Santa Croce where Michelangelo is buried? A gelato whilst strolling across the Ponte Vecchio? Don't forget the excellent shopping. (B)
10 Cooking demonstration and lunch in Lucca
After a relaxing start we enjoy a pizza and pasta cooking demonstration, to learn how pizza, focaccia and various pasta is created. Next it is time to taste it, as we enjoy a leisurely lunch. Your afternoon and evening are at leisure in Lucca. (B/L)
11 Ferraris and Parmesan Cheese lunch
Driving north we visit the fantastic Ferrari Museum at Maranello, near Modena. A local guide will join us and show us around this fantastic exhibition of bright red, old, new and future Ferraris and Formula One racing cars. Later we continue to the Panini Hombre cheese farm to learn how ‘Parmigiano-Reggiano' (Parmesan) cheese is made, before enjoying a cheese tasting and light lunch. Continuing to Lake Garda, we reach the charming lakeside town of Bardolino, where we stay the next three nights. Dinner tonight will be in our hotel restaurant. (B/L/D) Stay: Hotel Caesius Thermae & Spa Resort, Bardolino or similar
12 ‘My Time’ in Lake Garda
We have left today entirely free to enjoy glorious Lake Garda. Often regarded as the most beautiful of all the Italian Lakes, Garda is also the largest and deepest. Do as little or as much as you want. Maybe catch a ferry across the lake to explore and shop in the characterful ‘picture postcard' ports of Lazise or Sirmione. (B/D)
13 Lakeside Salo and wine tasting at Redaelli de Zinis
This morning we visit the delightful lakeside town of Salo. Explore its historical centre which is filled with lanes and little squares with noble houses, elegant shops and the longest promenade on Lake Garda, at your own pace. Later we continue to Redaelli de Zinis in Calvagese della Riviera. This is a famous local winery and restaurant. Here we enjoy a wine tasting and sample some of the locally sourced produce before lunch. (B/L)
14 Verona and Vicenza sightseeing
Skirting the lake we will visit Romeo and Juliet's Verona. A local guide will bring to life this beautiful city, where these tragic lovers avowed a love that spanned the centuries. This afternoon we continue to beautiful Vicenza, where a local guide will join us for a walking tour to explore the medieval centre. Later we arrive at our Venetian Villa hotel, where we stay two nights. (B/D) Stay: Hotel Villa Contarini Nenzi
15 Bassano del Grappa & historic Treviso
After a leisurely start this morning, we visit delightful Bassano del Grappa located on the foothills of the Alps. You will have free time to stroll across the ornate, centuries old, covered bridge which spans the River Brenta, before exploring the wonderful arcaded streets and piazzas in the heart of town. Later we will enjoy a visit to the Poli Grappa Museum to taste some Grappa liqueur. This afternoon we enjoy a stop in the historic centre of Treviso, before dinner in our historic Villa. (B/D)
16 Salzburg welcome and walking tour
Heading north past rolling meadows and mountains we cross over into Austria to the enchanting city of Salzburg where we stay the next 2 nights. Mid-afternoon a local guide will take us on a walking tour of this enchanting baroque city of Mozart, from the Mirabelle Palace Gardens to the magnificent city squares, including several locations used in the film ‘The Sound of Music'. This evening enjoy dinner in your hotel. (B/D) Stay: Altstadthotel Stadtkrug or similar
17 The Austrian Lakes District, Hallstatt and St Wolfgang
Driving deep into the Lakes District we stop in the picturesque town of Hallstatt, considered the oldest inhabited village in Europe and perhaps the most beautiful in Austria. Later we follow the shores of Wolfgangsee (lake) to enjoy lunchtime in the flower bedecked town of St Wolfgang. The remainder of your afternoon and evening is at leisure in Salzburg - arguably one of the most interesting and beautiful cities in the world. You have ‘My Time' to explore the myriad of narrow, cobblestoned streets, ornate squares and churches, fascinating shops and traditional coffee houses. The views from the enormous Festung (Fortress), sitting high above the city, are magnificent. (B)
18 Innsbruck in the Tyrol and over the Fern Pass into Bavaria
Following the dramatic Inn Valley through the rolling Tyrolean hills we visit the nearby winter resort city of Innsbruck. There will be time at leisure to explore the sights of the Altstadt (old town) such as the Hofburg Imperial Palace, cobblestoned streets and the renowned Golden Roof. Passing pretty Alpine villages we drive over the Fern Pass into the Bavarian Alps and the ancient historic town of Füssen, where we stay the next 2 nights. (B/D) Stay: Hotel Hirsch in Füssen or similar
19 Neuschwanstein Castle and Tegelberg
We start the day in Hohenschwangau. On one hill overlooking the little village you have the neo-gothic castle of Hohenschwangau and on the other side above the village is a wooded mountain spur and Neuschwanstein – the fairytale castle of ‘mad' King Ludwig. We take a leisurely stroll up the wooded road to enjoy a guided tour through Neuschwanstein Castle's state rooms, king's apartments, halls and throne room; all reminiscent of a Wagner operatic saga. Later this afternoon we will take a cable car ride up to Tegelberg to take in the excellent views down onto the fairytale castles far below. Your evening is at leisure in Füssen.    Please Note: The guided tour through Neuschwanstein Castle incorporates climbing up and down a number of staircases and, as there are no elevators, the inside visit to the castle this morning may not be suitable for those with walking difficulties or limitations. (B)
20 The Church in the Meadows, Garmisch and the Abbey of Kloster Ettal
Driving through Bavarian farmlands and forests we will stop at arguably the most beautiful church in Europe – Wieskirche (the ‘Church in the Meadows'). Surrounded by green fields, the interior of this World Heritage Listed church is an astounding Rococo creation. Later we enjoy ‘My Time' in Garmisch-Partenkirchen to relax in one of the traditional beer gardens or restaurants, or shop in the broad pedestrian mall. We will also visit the 14th century baroque Abbey of Kloster Ettal which houses a white marble Madonna. Later we continue to your 4 star hotel, where we stay the next 2 nights, in preparation for an incredible Oberammergau Passion Play experience.     Your hotel in the Oberammergau area As an appointed Tour Operator for the 2020 Oberammergau Passion Play, and handling such a large number of Oberammergau packages, we have been fortunate to be allocated stays in a variety of excellent, 4 star hotels in Oberammergau itself, as well as in the nearby towns of Murnau and Garmisch-Partenkirchen. (B/D)
21 An incredible Oberammergau Passion Play Experience
An easy start to the day before we enjoy time exploring the colourful village of Oberammergau with its beautiful houses and buildings adorned with “Lüftlmalerei” - ornately painted murals depicting assorted religious scenes. Throughout the afternoon and evening we enjoy the huge spectacle that is the Passion Play from our Category 1 seats.  The famous Passion Play has been performed every ten years since 1633, a time when the Thirty Year's War and Bubonic Plague were ravaging Europe causing so much suffering and death. With a backdrop of Kofel Peak and surrounded by the Ammergau Mountains, the massive open-air stage erupts with colour, music, song and up to 2,000 local inhabitants enacting the story of the Passion of Christ. (B/D)
22 To Munich
This morning we drive to nearby Munich where your tour ends on arrival, mid-morning. Drop off points will be in the city centre and Munich airport. We recommend you book flights or trains that depart Munich after 2pm.     This tour requires a moderate level of fitness due to the unique places we visit and stay. This tour is not suited to anyone who has mobility issues. (B)

Albatross Inclusions

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Journey Highlights
  • Stay 4 nights in Stresa beside wonderful Lake Maggiore
  • Take the scenic Centovalli Express train to Locarno ande enjoy private cruises on Lake Maggiore and Lake Como
  • Visit beautiful Orta San Giulio on Lake Orta
  • Stay 2 nights in Liguria in historic Genoa 
  • Enjoy a walking tour of Genoa with its magnificent  palaces, stately homes and massive medieval quarter
  • Visit beautiful Santa Margherita Ligure
  • Cruise to world famous Portofino and the hidden Abbey of San Fruttuoso
  • Stay 4 nights in the typically ‘Tuscan' town of Lucca
  • Spend a delightful day exploring the famous Cinque Terre and explore the beautiful city of  Florence 
  • Enjoy an expert Italian cooking demonstration followed by lunch 
  • See the famous  Leaning Tower of Pisa and Cathedral
  • Dine out in the olive groves at a Tuscan Osteria
  • Stay 3 nights beside glorious Lake Garda
  • Visit the fantastic Ferrari museum and a private collection of Maseratis
  • Enjoy a light lunch at the Panini Hombre Parmesan cheese farm
  • Relax with a day to explore Lake Garda 
  • Enjoy a morning visit to historical Salo
  • Stay 2 nights in an elegant Venetian Villa hotel near Treviso
  • Enjoy a guided tour of  Verona and historical  Vicenza
  • Taste Grappa in the hometown of Bassano del Grappa 
  • Enjoy dinner in our historic Villa
  • Stay 2 nights in the heart of ‘Mozart's' baroque city of Salzburg
  • Discover Salzburg on a guided walking tour 
  • Spend a day exploring the magnificent Lakes District visiting Hallstatt and St Wolfgang
  • Drive over the stunning Fern Pass to stay 2 nights in the ancient medieval town of Füssen
  • Explore the cobblestoned city of Innsbruck 
  • Visit Ludwig's ‘fairytale' Neuschwanstein Castle
  • Ride the Tegelberg cable car high into the Alps  
  • Visit the most beautiful church in Europe, Wieskirche - the ‘Church in the Meadows'
  • Relax in the mountain resort town of Garmisch and visit the Abbey of Kloster Ettal
  • Enjoy your ‘grand finále' - stay 2 nights in selected 4 star hotel accommodation and enjoy Category 1 ‘best in house' seating for the marvellous Oberammergau Passion Play
Trip Inclusions

Over $2,200 value of extras already included

  • Category 1 seating for the Oberammergau Passion Play
  • ALL excursions, scenic drives, sightseeing and entrances as described
  • Fully escorted by our experienced Tour Manager
  • Travel in a first class air-conditioned touring coach
  • 21 nights specially selected hotel accommodation
  • Hotel porterage (1 bag per person)
  • 37 Meals – including breakfast daily (B), lunch in Lucca, a light lunch at Panini Hombre & wine tasting and lunch at Redaelli de Zinis (L) plus 13 dinners (D)
  • Welcome drink in Stresa and Grappa tasting in Bassano del Grappa
  • Hand Selected Albatross Experiences - private boat trip on Lake Maggiore and Lake Como, panoramic train Centovalli Express, cruises Portofino and Cinque Terre, fairytale castle visit
  • Local guides as described in the itinerary
  • ALL tips to your Tour Manager, Driver and Local Guides
  • Personal audio system whilst on tour
  • Free WiFi on most coaches and at hotels
Trip Notes
  • The prices above are based on estimated 2020 rates. Tour prices may change due to currency fluctuations. In August 2019 all tour prices will be finalised and guaranteed against currency surcharges. If the prices rise by more than 10%, you have the right to cancel your arrangements and 50% of the deposit is refundable. The balance of the deposit is non-refundable and non-transferable and will be retained by Albatross as a booking fee.
  • Accommodation, itinerary and inclusions subject to change.
  • Prices are for land/cruise and internal flights as specified only. Flights not specified are not included.

Prices & Dates

There are currently no departures available on this trip. Either it's the end of the season and new departures will be released shortly, or this itinerary has been changed and will no longer continue. Feel free to contact us for information about when next seasons dates will be released or click here to view the general brochure release dates for all destinations.

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Trip Notes
Trip prices are per person, and reflect applicable discounts. Discounts are subject to availability, exclusive to Global Journeys and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change by Albatross. Full terms & conditions are available here.