Europe Christmas & New Year Escape - 12 days

Europe Christmas & New Year Escape - 12 days

tourhub | Expat Explore Travel | Europe Christmas & New Year Escape - 12 days | 127
12 Days


Europe Christmas & New Year Escape - 12 days

12 Days Starting and ending in Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome Capital, Italy

Visiting: Rome, Venice, Innsbruck, Munich, Bavaria, Rhine Gorge, Amsterdam, Ghent, Paris, Burgundy, Swiss Alps, Lake Como, Pisa, Tuscany, Florence

Tour operator:

Expat Explore Travel

Tour code:


Recommended For:


Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

12 - 51

Physical rating:

Low, All Ages / Not applicable

Age range:


Special diets catered:


Tour operated in:


$2315 (USD)

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Tour Overview

If you're looking to celebrate the 12 days of Christmas this year, then look no further than the Europe Christmas and New Year Escape! A comprehensive Europe coach tour taking in some of the continent's most famous sights, including Paris, Rome, Venice, Tuscany, and Florence. You even have the option of visiting the Vatican City and heading up to the highest train station in Europe in the shadow of Switzerland's Jungfraujoch. And that's not all... with stops in Germany's Rhine Valley and Amsterdam, too, this is the best way to celebrate the festive season in Europe


  • Celebrate Christmas in Amsterdam and ring in the New Year in Rome

  • Enjoy free days in Paris, the Swiss Alps and Rome

  • Visit Burgundy, Florence, Innsbruck, and Ghent

  • Cruise along the canals of Amsterdam


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Day 1: Start Of Tour In Rome - Venice
Location: Rome, Venice
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: No Meals

Ciao! Welcome to this Europe Escape Christmas & New Year tour. Meet up with your tour leader and the rest of the group and get ready to hit the road. Relax and enjoy the scenery of vineyards, orchards and countryside on the journey to Venice. Arrive in Venice and prepare to be wowed! This famous floating city is perched across over 100 islands and connected by numerous canals. Explore the city on an orientation tour with your tour leader. See St. Mark’s Square, the Rialto Bridge and the Grand Canal. Tonight is free to spend as you wish. Enjoy the piazzas, art, food and unique Venetian vibe! Embark on a gondola ride optional excursion to see Venice the traditional way.

Day 2: Innsbruck - Munich - Bavaria
Location: Innsbruck, Munich, Bavaria
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Say farewell to Italy for now and continue onto the next exciting destination on the itinerary - Innsbruck in Austria! Take a trip through the spectacular Brenner Pass and admire the gorgeous countryside en route. Make a comfort stop in Innsbruck before arriving in Munich, Germany, this afternoon. Set off on an orientation tour of the city with your tour leader and discover more about Munich which was largely rebuilt after WW2. See the highlights and find out more about Munich’s most famous event - Oktoberfest! This evening, enjoy an authentic taste of Germany during an included dinner at a local beer hall. Prost!

Day 3: Bavaria - Rhine Valley (Christmas Eve)
Location: Bavaria, Rhine Gorge
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: No Meals

It’s Christmas Eve and the German adventures continue today as the tour travels onwards to the picturesque Rhine Valley! Arrive and embark on a Rhine River cruise en route to the hotel located in the heart of the region. Admire the views of the dramatic cliffs, medieval towns and castles along the river banks. After the cruise, visit a local wine merchant for a complimentary Rhine Valley wine tasting where you may even get to taste eiswein (ice wine). Enjoy free time once the wine tasting is complete and spend the evening exploring local sights. Why not embrace the festive atmosphere at the nearby Boppard Christmas market and enjoy the lights, decorations and traditional German food?

Day 4: Rhine Valley - Amsterdam (Christmas Day)
Location: Rhine Gorge, Amsterdam
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Merry Christmas! Celebrate this festive holiday with the unique gift of travel! Start the day in the Rhine Valley before travelling onwards to Amsterdam in the Netherlands. Enjoy a photo stop at an iconic Dutch windmill before arriving in Amsterdam later today. Then, head to the centre of the city for a twilight canal cruise. This is an ideal way to be introduced to this famous destination! Better yet, the Amsterdam Light Festival is out in full blast at this time of year, and a cruise offers the best views of the elaborate displays. Join the group for a delicious Christmas dinner before enjoying a free night in this ever-popular city!

Day 5: Amsterdam - Ghent - Paris
Location: Amsterdam, Ghent, Paris
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

This morning, get ready to experience two Dutch icons: cheese and clogs! Enjoy a visit to a local farm to discover how these items are crafted before waving goodbye to the Netherlands. Next, experience Ghent, Belgium. This picturesque port city is renowned for its well-preserved medieval architecture and is also a cultural hub! Grab a bite to eat and stroll through the historic city centre. Next up on the itinerary is Paris! Arrive in the “City of Lights'' and embark on a driving tour of the French capital. See iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum and the Arc de Triomphe. Finish up the driving tour as the group heads out for an included dinner tonight.

Day 6: Paris: Free Day
Location: Paris
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Today is yours to explore Paris any way you like. Whether you’re after a trip to the Eiffel Tower, a chance to explore the city’s Christmas markets or a few hours in one of its countless museums – Paris awaits! Join the highly recommended “Paris ” optional excursion for a fun-filled day tour complete with a macaron tasting, photo stops at the Arc de Triomphe and Opéra Garnier, a visit to a renowned perfume museum, a River Seine lunch cruise, a visit to the Montparnasse Tower for incredible views of the city and free time in the Latin Quarter. It’s a fabulously French outing! The evening is yours to spend as you wish. Why not finish off with an evening in Montmartre? C'est magnifique!

Day 7: Paris - Burgundy - Swiss Alps
Location: Paris, Burgundy, Swiss Alps
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: No Meals

It’s time to depart the “City of Love”. But our love affair with France is not over! Enjoy a lunch stop in Burgundy which is the heart of French wine country. Here, try the famous wine or visit the beautiful Hospices de Beaune. After lunch, cross the border into Switzerland. Prepare to be amazed by the views of the Swiss Alps! Later, arrive at the home-base in the Swiss Alps for the next two days. Breathe in that fresh Alpine air and take in the magnificent views. Snow-capped peaks, Alpine forests and crystal-clear lakes are all around! Enjoy the surroundings and festive spirit!

Day 8: Swiss Alps: Free Day
Location: Swiss Alps
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Make the most of a free day in the Swiss Alps! Don’t miss the chance to join the ‘Jungfraujoch: Journey to the Top of Europe’ optional excursion! With the snowy landscapes, magnificent scenery and a breathtaking journey to the highest train station in all of Europe, this excursion is what bucket list experiences are made of! At Jungfraujoch, you can play in the snow, visit the Sphinx Observatory and even explore an Ice Palace! Back at lower altitudes, why not wander through a local village and see what winter-time festivities you can find? Sip gluhwein, enjoy the snowy surroundings and absorb Switzerland’s festive atmosphere – it doesn’t get much more Christmassy than this! Warm up tonight with the optional Swiss Dinner.

Day 9: Lake Como - Pisa - Tuscany
Location: Lake Como, Pisa, Tuscany
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Wave goodbye to the Swiss Alps this morning. Today, the trip continues to Italy! Make a lunch stop at the famous Lake Como. This beautiful destination is complete with picturesque lakeside villages, sparkling blue waters and impressive mountain backdrops. Next stop today is the iconic Leaning Tower of Pisa. Be sure to have your best poses prepared and snap some pics! Afterwards, it’s onwards to Tuscany. This region of Italy is famous for its food, wine, art and architecture. Settle in at the hotel for tonight in Montecatini which is a spa town north-west of Florence. Why not sip on a glass of something local tonight?

Day 10: Tuscany - Florence - New Year's Eve In Rome
Location: Tuscany, Florence, Rome
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

It’s New Year's Eve and this morning after breakfast, it’s time to visit the enchanting city of Florence. Join an expert local guide for a walking tour of Florence and learn more about the city that was the birthplace of the Renaissance. See top sights including the Ponte Vecchio and Florence Cathedral! Enjoy free time in Florence before the final leg of the journey back to Rome. Excitement will be in the air as La Festa di Roma begins tonight! Ring in the new year with your new travel friends during an included dinner tonight! Be sure to watch the midnight fireworks which go off from Palatine Hill. Circus Maximus is the best place to take in the show!

Day 11: Rome: Free Day
Location: Rome
Accommodation: Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Kick off the brand new year with a full free day in Rome. Known as “The Eternal City”, Rome was once at the centre of the Roman Empire. Today, it is a destination filled with ancient history, culture and world-famous cuisine. Experience the city decked out in its finest festive decorations today! View the facades of iconic landmarks like the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Pantheon while exploring the city. Stroll through the famous piazzas, climb the Spanish Steps and find a local trattoria to enjoy a delicious Italian meal. La Festa di Roma continues on until this evening and you could also venture to St. Peter’s Square where thousands gather to celebrate and receive the Pope’s New Year’s Day blessing.

Day 12: End Of Tour In Rome
Location: Rome
Meals Included: Breakfast

After 12 days filled with festive Christmas and New Year fun, the tour comes to an end after breakfast today in Rome. We hope you have enjoyed this festive trip and that we can welcome you back to Europe again in the future! Be sure to swap details with your fellow travellers before you say farewell for now!

What's Included

  • Accommodation

    11 nights in 2, 3 & 4* hotel accommodation in twin rooms with private bathrooms Single travellers have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure a private room

  • Fully Guided

    Fully guided tour with experienced tour leader

  • Meals

    11 Breakfasts, 6 Dinners *Vegetarian options available for all meals on request

  • Transport

    Modern air-conditioned coach with reclining seats and toilet onboard

  • Any public transport used as part of the tour (excludes free days)

  • Tour leader will accompany group throughout and manage all logistical details

What's Not Included

  • Airport Transfers at Destination

  • All Domestic Transportation (including internal flights)

  • Country Entry Visas

Check out our Q&As

  • Is there a supplement for solo travellers?

    There is an optional single supplement/private room upgrade available for single travellers who wish to have a private room. This can be added at the time of booking or by contacting our customer services team. Please note that the room provided may be a single room with a single bed.

  • What is the tipping policy?

    Whilst we fully understand that some nationalities are not accustomed to tipping, this is a normal part of the culture in many of the countries we visit. Tipping has become an increasingly accepted practice in all areas of the service industry, but particularly in restaurants, bars and taxis worldwide. Expat Explore crew members

  • Are airport transfers included in this tour?

    No, you will need to make your own arrangements to get to the meeting point for the first day of your tour. Please see the meeting point information for details on how to reach the meeting point.

  • Is the tour coach air conditioned?

    Yes, Full air-conditioning

  • What is the standard of the hotels on this tour?

    We have searched and invested in excellent accommodation options, either located in cities or well placed with public transport connections. Clean linen, towels is always included. Toiletries (shampoo, shower gel etc) and hair dryers are not always included, so you may wish to bring these with you. Accommodation is provided in twin share en-suite rooms. We use a mix of mostly 2, 3 & 4-star hotels.

  • Do you require a visa for this holiday?

    Certain nationalities may require a visa(s) for this tour.

  • Are the local guides on the tour English speaking?

    All our tours are conducted in English.

  • What is the fitness level required to do this tour?

    All travellers are required to carry their own bags, get on and off the coach, and use public transport. Our city walking tours can last up to 3 hours and certain places involve walking up and down lots of steps. We want you to enjoy your tour, so read through the itinerary thoroughly and make your own conclusions as to whether you feel that you are fit and healthy enough.

  • Is there a limit to luggage that can be brought on the tour?

    Due to weight and space limitations, you are allowed to bring one main piece of luggage weighing no more than 20kg, and one small soft bag for hand luggage weighing a maximum of 7kg. On all tours, you will have to carry your own luggage (e.g. into hotels and up to your room if hotels don’t have elevators). Please bear this in mind when you are deciding what to pack

  • Is there any free time to explore places during the tour?

    Yes, As detailed in the itinerary

  • Are vaccinations required for this tour?

    We are committed to curating excellent travel experiences and to do so we need all of our travelers to feel safe. In order to ensure the peace of mind and safety of our travelers and staff on board the coach, we are still requesting that all travellers, regardless of their vaccination status, produce a negative Covid test. This test can be a PCR test

  • Are all entrance fees included in the price?

    No, entrance fees are not included.

  • What is the maximum group size?

    It depends on how many other people book! There could be up to 51 other passengers, so you will have the opportunity to make lots of friends!

  • Will there be an escort accompanying this tour?

    Our tour leaders come from all walks of life, with different backgrounds and interests. They are all confident and well-travelled with an in-depth knowledge of the destinations they are working in, and a passion for helping you make the most out of your Expat Explore tour.

  • Will I know the names and details of all the accommodation before I depart?

    A full list of confirmed accommodation names and addresses for your particular departure will be emailed to you around 1 week before the tour starts.

  • Are flights included in this tour?

    No, you will need to make your own arrangements to get to the meeting destination for the first day of your tour. Make sure you keep departure times and possible delays in mind when booking flights.

  • Is free Wi-Fi available in the accommodation used?

    All of the hotels on this tour offer Wi-Fi, which is available free of charge as part of your Expat Explore tour.

  • Are all the relevant entry visa’s included in the price of the tour?

    No, visas are each traveler’s personal responsibility, and we recommend that plenty of time is allowed for visas to be applied for. When applying for your visa, please ensure that the proper research is carried out before you apply, and that you deal directly with the embassies or certified agents with regard to acquiring correct and timely information. We cannot take responsibility for customers

  • Will passengers from another country be participating in the tour?

    Our travelers come from all walks of life, with different backgrounds and interests.

  • Are children permitted to take part in the tour?

    Our tours are not suitable for young children, so we set a minimum age limit of 10 years old.

  • Do you operate a “single share” option and how does it work?

    If you are travelling alone there is no compulsory charge - you will share a twin room with another passenger of the same gender. There is an optional single supplement/private room upgrade available for single travellers who wish to have a private room. This can be added at the time of booking or by contacting our team.

  • Children on tour?

    Our tours are not suitable for young children which is why we have a minimum age limit of 10 years old. However, at the discretion of Expat Explore we may consider younger children on certain tours if they meet certain criteria and a request is received in writing via email. Minors (between 10 and 18 years of age) must be accompanied by a parent or guardian who accepts full responsibility for them. Unaccompanied minors will not be accepted on tour. Expat Explore reserves the right to decline any booking at our discretion. Any minor (between 10 and 18 years of age) is priced the same as an adult.

  • What policies are in place for Covid-19?

    The health and safety of our travellers and employees are our top priority. Which means, when you travel with us, our enhanced hygiene protocols will ensure you do so in a safe and responsible way - ask for details of current policies.

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    Since 2005

  • What Ethical Travel credentials does the tour company have?

    At Expat Explore we value responsible travel and are committed to exploring the world consciously and kindly. We are proud to make responsible travel possible with a number of our sustainable travel practices!

  • Am I contributing to any charity by booking the tour?

    Relate is a South African based not-for-profit organisation that Expat Explore supports. The group aims to help those less fortunate create better lives for themselves through a variety of fundraising initiatives. On our South Africa tours, each passenger will receive an Expat Explore branded Relate bracelet. We donate the cost of these bracelets to our chosen Relate charity: the Nelson Mandela Sc

Reviews of this Operator


Wonderful new addition


Great new country and addition by Expat. One of the most interesting and beautiful countries I've ever been. Great food, scenery and lovely people.

Jamie the Kingslayer  

Everything I had expected and more


It was my first time traveling to Europe so I was nervous about everything including finding my way around, speaking the languages, and finding lodging. It turned out to be an incredible experience, I couldn't ask for a better your guide. Luke truly is the best in the business and we were so lucky o have him on the last tour of the season. I am definitely going to recommend Expat to my family and friends when they want to travel to Europe. I am going to go as far as finding out when Luke will be the guide and have family/friends specifically book the tour with him.




From orientation to farewell dinner Martina was always there to ensure that everyone was happy and enjoying the tour! It was fast paced, especially with the added excursions, but the tour covered the best of Italy and Martina was absolutely the best. She was entertaining and informative. Look forward to another tour with her!!


Perfect combination of sites, history, culture and food


The highlights of Japan tour with Expat Explore was the ideal way to see the country. It had the perfect mix of big cities, small quaint villages, historical sites and food! The tour was well organised and a good pace to enjoy the various places and activities. We had the opportunity to be immersed in local culture and try the cuisine in a range of dining experiences. The hotels were clean and roomy to rest for days filled with adventures. Japan with Expat should be on your wish list!


Good experience


Enjoyed the views of different places and learnt about the history of different places in UK/Ireland.

Travelling Solo  

12 Day Italian Delights


A great tour made even better by our tour leader Marty. She was so knowledgeable and helpful. Made us laugh, showed us amazing sites and always had great recommendations.


Really nice experience


Loved the small country towns. Very beautiful MARTY AND ALEX THE DRIVER , made the tour experience perfect for me. She is a brilliant guide.


Totally exhausted


I need a holiday to recover from this full-on, insufficient down time, tour. Late hotel arrivals, late city tours, late dinners and excessive walking due to public transport use and then early morning starts. And to top it off, no seat rotation (tour leader advised on day 2 for covid reasons) which made sense on day 2 but not by day 3 or 4 when we had been grouped together at meals, on walking tours, and sharing rooms with people we had just met...merrily spreading our germs between our group anyway! This seating rule however was waived for a special few...those who insisted that they get travel sickness (and must sit in the front seat) and..those who think the rule is not for them and aren't challenged by the tour leader anyway. No seat rotation also meant not getting the opportunity to get to know everyone on the tour on an equal basis.

Dates & Availability

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Sunday - Thursday

Dec 22, 2024 - Jan 02, 2025
$2315 (USD)

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Book with Confidence

  • Free Date Changes

    Expat Explore Travel allows you to make 5 free date changes, as long as the change is made at least 76 days before the start of the tour.

  • Low Deposit

    Expat Explore Travel requires a minimum deposit of 10% or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 45 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of expat explore travel charges.

    Up to 45 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

    At 44 days before tour starts: Forfeit 40% of booking price.

    At 29 days before tour starts: Forfeit 70% of booking price.

    At 14 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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