Saga Holidays - Europe and the Mediterranean Feb 2019-Mar 2020 Trade
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Austria by Rail

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AUSTRIA Austria by Rail 9 nights from £1249^ Including optional travel insurance or a reduction of £54 if not required§ Acclaimed for its wonderful Alpine scenery of towering peaks, sparkling mountain lakes and Imperial cities locked in time, Austria is a dream to behold. Discover three of its most endearing imperial cities ­ Vienna, Graz and Salzburg ­ on this revelatory tour which links them by rail to also showcase the country's outstanding natural beauty. NEW Hallstatt's UNESCO-listed setting in the Austrian Alps ACTIVITY LEVEL Day 1: UK to Vienna. Fly to Vienna and enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city which will reveal the landmark Romanesque and Gothic St Stephen's Cathedral and the famous late 19th-century Ringstrasse. Spend the next three nights at the locally rated 4-star Derag Livinghotel Kaiser Franz Josef. This evening, enjoy a stroll through the Viennese district of Grinzing before reaching the traditional heurigen (wine pub) where you'll have dinner. D Day 2: Vienna. Explore Vienna on a walking tour through its historic centre where you can see such sights as the imperial Hofburg complex, built by Emperor Franz Josef, the famous Spanish Riding School and the imperial crypt. Your tour culminates with a visit to the stunning gardens at Schönbrunn Palace which have been opened to the public since 1779. If you prefer, there will be time instead to see inside the lavish interior (entrance not included). B Day 3: Vienna. There's no shortage of things to see and do during a day at leisure in Vienna. Of special note is Vienna's Prater Munich Salzburg Dachstein Mountains nights in hotel Austria Lake St Wolfgang Hallstatt Lipizzaner Stud Farm Piber Vienna Graz which is set in the former hunting grounds of the Habsburgs and where you'll find the city's giant Ferris wheel and the neighbouring `Green Prater'. This enormous parkland of forests and water meadows is dissected by a four-and-a-half long pedestrianised avenue lined with 2,500 mature trees! Alternatively, take the opportunity to skip across the border with Slovakia on an optional excursion to Bratislava. This evening, look forward to dinner is at a local, traditional Schnitzel restaurant. B, D Day 4: Vienna to Graz. Travel to the train station this morning to board your high-speed railjet train to Graz, Austria's second city which is set in the south eastern state of Styria. The journey encompasses the famous Semmering railway, a feat of mid 19th-century engineering. You'll arrive in Graz around lunchtime where an included half-day sightseeing and walking tour will reveal a harmonious blend of architectural styles that date back to the Middle Ages. Stay three nights at the locally rated 3-star Hotel Restaurant Gollner, a family-run hotel which is set 30 kilometres outside the city centre in Lebring. B, D Day 5: Lipizzaner Stud Farm Piber. Travel into the unspoilt Austrian countryside to visit the country's only federal stud farm, the visitor centre of which is housed in a majestic baroque mansion. The farm has been breeding world-famous Lipizzaner stallions, Europe's oldest thoroughbred horse, since 1920. After a tour of the farm, discover Styria's other claim to fame, pumpkin seed oil which is produced the old-fashioned way in artisanal mills. You'll have the opportunity to enjoy a tasting of Austria's nutty-flavoured `black gold' during a guided tour. B Day 6: Graz. Enjoy a day at leisure to experience the city's sights and sounds at your own pace. Attractions here include the forested public park and hilltop park, Schlossberg, which rears above the historic streets, to more modern attractions, such as the island in the river and the Kunsthaus Graz, the modern art museum. Alternatively, tick a third country off during your tour on an optional excursion through the `Austrian Tuscany' wine-growing region to Maribor in Slovenia. B, D Day 7: Graz to Salzburg. After some free time at the hotel this morning, travel to the main train station in Graz for your half-day train journey to Salzburg. This scenic Alpine route crosses the Dachstein Mountains, passing by such idyllic towns as Schladming, Radstadt and Bischofshofen. Arrive in the afternoon for a three-night stay at the locally rated 4-star Amadeo Hotel Schaffenrath. B, D Day 8: Salzburg. A baroque masterpiece, Salzburg's remarkably well-preserved old town ­ Alstadt ­ is on UNESCO's list and looks much as it did during Mozart's day. Take to the streets on a guided walking tour of the city which, among the key sights, will point out the Getreidegasse where you can see Mozart's house and indulge in some window shopping. B 162 To book, please visit your Travel Agent