hiking Germany; castle road; burgenstrasse; dresden; nuremberg

Exploring the Heart of Old Europe

Our insider's journey reveals unique Old World cultures, hidden treasures, and superb landscapes for hiking.

Photo by Bildagentur Waldhaeus

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Bavaria to Berlin

A Hiking and Cultural Adventure in the Heart of Old Europe
Repertory Trip: Next Offered September 12-21, 2014

Bavaria to Berlin route-map

Trip Details at-a-Glance

Cost From: $5395  
Length: 10 days
Arrive: Munich, Germany
Depart: Berlin, Germany
Lodging: 9 nights in hotels
Meals: All meals included except 3 dinners
Activity: Hiking / Trekking, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level: A mix of moderate walks and hikes, 2-5 hours a day on hiking days
2p

Highlights

  • Historic Nuremberg, with its medieval walls, watchtowers, and moat
  • The rural deltas of Spreewald, exquisite Dresden, with its Baroque monuments
  • Delightful accommodation including a castle-turned-hotel and a Saxon royal palace
  • Berlin, ancient and avante-gard hub of Europe


Our guides were so much fun, so informed, and made the trip absolutely fabulous.Annie C.—Purchase, NY

Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.

References

We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.

Repertory Trip

This is one of our special Repertory Trips offered every two to five years.  It will be several years before this journey is offered again. Now is the time to go!

In an ancient European heartland with a rich legacy of kingdoms and kaisers, we’ve created a fascinating insider’s adventure with veteran Trip Leader Robert Sommer. We hike the historic Burgenstrasse (Castle Road) between medieval fortresses perched atop crags, explore by punt boat in the tranquil Spreewald, a delta dotted with traditional farmsteads, savor the Baroque treasures of Dresden, and enjoy our share of world-class beer tasting in local breweries. For a grand finale, we “walk the Wall” in Berlin and enjoy our Trip Leader’s insights into one of Europe’s greatest cities. Raised in the former East Germany, Robert has a true passion for sharing this intriguing corner of Old Europe.

Itinerary at a Glance

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

Days 1-4
Hilpoltstein / Nuremberg / The Castle Road / Pottenstein

After exploring tiny medieval Hilpoltstein and the lanes of Nuremberg’s Old Town, with its brooding watchtowers and moat, we set out for a hike along the picturesque Burgenstrasse amid medieval villages of half-timbered houses. Another hike leads us through idyllic woodlands to lovely Pottenstein, known for its craft beer, and we’ll stop in to sample the wares.

Days 5-7
Iron Curtain Trail / Dresden / Spreewald

We hike the Iron Curtain Trail to reach the once-divided village of Modlareuth, now an open-air museum of the Iron Curtain era. From glorious Dresden, a golden city of Baroque castles and palaces along the Elbe River, we hike among the rock outcrops known as the “Saxon Switzerland,” visit romantic Meissen, known for its porcelain, and explore by boat in the Spreewald, a pristine inland delta where the Slavic-speaking Sorb people have farmed for generations.

Days 8-10
Potsdam / Berlin

After exploring Potsdam, home to Prussian kings and German kaisers for centuries, we cross the famed Glienicke Bridge to enter Berlin, where we trace the former path of the Berlin Wall to the site of the famous Checkpoint Charlie. Depart on Day 10.

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

What the Trip is Like

This trip is rated 2+, easy to moderate, according to our trip grading system. It is a town and country walking tour consisting of hikes of 2-5 hours. You carry just a daypack for any items you want to have with you during the day. Please note that although this is not a strenuous trip, you should be able to be on your feet for up to six hours a day. Our city walks can sometimes be as long as three hours in the morning and three hours in the afternoon, so you should be in shape and ready to walk. Our trail hikes will be on a combination of dirt, gravel, and rocky terrain, so footwear with good traction is highly recommended. Our luggage is transported for us by van, so it is always possible to ride in the van if you want to opt out of a day's hike. Our picnic and restaurant lunches will be a delight: we'll be able to sample the local fare and complement our meals with the famous regional wines.

A Note on Accommodations: Although hotel rooms in Europe are not always of uniform or international size, our leaders try their best to assign rooms in a fair way so that all participants experience an equal advantage throughout the trip as a whole.

Explanation of Trip Levels

 

Departures & Leaders

This is one of our special Repertory Trips offered only every two to five years. This journey will not be offered again for several years. Now is the Time to Go!

2014
Sep 12-21, 2014  Robert Sommer

Trip Cost

Prices are for 2014
$5395 (12-14 members)
$5695 (9-11 members)
$5995 (6-8 members)
Single supplement: $545
Forced single supplement: $395
more on pricing

Trip Cost Includes:

  • Expert leadership of a Wilderness Travel Trip Leader and local guides
  • Accommodations in hotels
  • All meals included except 3 dinners
  • Land transportation and airport transfers as noted

Trip Cost Does Not Include:

International airfare, transfers for independent arrival or departure, any meals not specified after each itinerary day, airport departure taxes, optional tipping or gratuities to leaders or staff, additional hotel nights that may be necessitated by airline schedule changes or other factors, pre-trip expenses of medical immunizations (if any), travel insurance, passports and visas, and other expenses of a personal nature (alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.).

Trip Payment Schedule

At time of reservation: $500
120 days prior to departure: 20%
60 days prior to departure: Balance

Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule

Minimum fee: None per person
46-90 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost

Robert Sommer

Robert Sommer, raised in East Berlin, Germany, studied American Literature at Humboldt University of Berlin and the Italian Renaissance at the University of Florence, Italy. He spent a year as a high school exchange student in Santa Cruz, California. Robert has a Masters in Cultural Studies and Anthropology and a PhD, with a dissertation on Germany’s concentration camps. He recently worked as a consultant on a BBC documentary about Auschwitz. Robert is a veteran leader of many WT trips in Europe. “As a Trip Leader, I try to make trip members see the magic of a country and its uniqueness, whether it's a visual image, an artifact, or even the recipe of a local dish–something that stays with you, gives you fond memories, and contributes to your life back home.” When not guiding trips, Robert enjoys hiking, biking, cooking, and playing bass guitar. He speaks Russian, Polish, Spanish, and French, and is fluent in English, German, and Italian. He makes his home in both Berlin and Florence.

Upcoming Trips:

Heart of Switzerland, July 16-24, 2014
Heart of Switzerland, July 30-August 7, 2014
Bavaria to Berlin, September 12-21, 2014

Client Testimonials:


Robert went out of his way to make the trip enjoyable. He has a good sense of humor, was fun, informative and helpful. Linda Miller, Sacramento, CA
Tuscan Trails
Robert's knowledge of so much of Europe is amazing. He added so much personality and that ‘little something special' to the trip. Dawn Myers, Playa del Rey, CA
Tuscan Hilltowns
Robert was an excellent leader. He was always amusing and energetic. He prepared the picnics with a flair and brought a unique cultural perspective to the trip. Julie Hibben, Lincoln, MA
Tuscan Trails
Charming, organized, thoughtful, and interesting. Robert is very interesting and encouraging. A thoroughly delightful human being to share the trail with...or anywhere really. Marcia Z., Clio, CA
Heart of Switzerland
Robert is beyond fabulous in all categories. His command of trip logistics was complete and precise. His wealth of knowledge and warm, enthusiastic interaction with everyone made this trip truly special.
Suzi & Brian S., Ross, CA
Heart of Switzerland
Robert was outstanding—we assumed he'd be quite good, but he really exceeded our expectations. Miriam S., Stillwater, MN
Bavaria to Berlin
Robert was a terrific trip leader. He clearly communicated what each day would bring, and kept everyone laughing. Greg G., Acton, MA
Heart of Switzerland
Robert was extremely high-energy, friendly, knowledgeable, fun, and wanted to ensure everyone had a good time. Brady and Suzanne M., Friendswood, TX
Heart of Switzerland
Robert is a very thoughtful, considerate, and highly competent leader who has the added bonus of being a very warm and engaging person. Barry S., Belmont, CA
Heart of Switzerland