Northern Explorer Christmas & New Year - 18 Days

Northern Explorer Christmas & New Year - 18 Days

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Northern Explorer Christmas & New Year - 18 Days

18 Days Starting and ending in 52.370216,4.895168

Visiting: Germany, DK, EE, FI, DE, LV, LT, NL, PL, RU, SE

Tour operator:

Expat Explore Travel

Tour code:


Recommended For:


Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

12 - 51

Physical rating:


Tour operated in:


This tour is no longer available

Tour Overview

Have you always dreamed of spending the Festive Season in Europe? Celebrate Christmas and New Year on the Northern Europe Christmas tour! Cruise canals in Amsterdam, visit Christmas markets and a historic national park. Explore fascinating cities like Copenhagen, Helsinki, Warsaw, Tallinn and Riga. Spend Christmas Day in Helsinki, for a festive Finnish experience. Taste Dutch cheeses, discover new cuisines and sip on hot gluhwein. Explore medieval old towns, castles and royal palaces. Top it all off by ringing in the New Year in Berlin! This is the European trip of a lifetime!


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Day 1: Start Of Tour In Amsterdam

Arrive in Amsterdam and get ready for 18 days of festive adventure! Meet up with the tour leader at the hotel this morning. The Christmas tour adventures begin with a trip to the gorgeous Dutch countryside. Visit a local farm and learn how Dutch cheese and iconic Dutch clogs are crafted. Afterwards, choose to continue exploring the Dutch countryside on the Volendam & Zaanse Schans optional excursion or return to the city. This evening, set out on a canal cruise of the city! Drift along Amsterdam’s picturesque canals and drink in the sights from the water as you hear interesting stories and facts from the onboard commentary. Tonight, enjoy a welcome dinner before free time to explore Amsterdam’s festive atmosphere after dark!

Day 2: Amsterdam - Hamburg - Northern Germany

Wave Amsterdam farewell and travel to Hamburg. Settle in for a scenic drive through the countryside of the Netherlands and North-Western Germany. Arrive in Hamburg and get ready to do some exploring! At this time of year, the city is filled with glorious Christmas markets. Take some time this afternoon to explore the inviting stalls along the Town Hall Square. Grab a mug of glühwein, spiced hot wine, to warm your heart and body as you explore all the sights. This is where German Christmas spirit comes alive! After a few hours in Hamburg, head north to our hotel for the night.

Day 3: Northern Germany - Odense - Copenhagen

Cross the border into Scandinavia and travel towards Copenhagen this morning. Drive through forested Denmark and cross over Øresund Bridge - Europe's longest bridge! On the way, enjoy a lunch stop in Odense, the birthplace of Hans Christian Andersen, author of beloved fairy tales such as The Ugly Duckling and The Little Mermaid. Today’s final destination is Denmark’s capital city, Copenhagen. Arrive and embark on an orientation tour with your tour leader. See highlights like the Little Mermaid statue and Rosenborg Castle and discover what makes Copenhagen one of the world’s most liveable cities! Later, drive to the hotel, check-in and relax.

Day 4: Copenhagen - Helsingør - Gothenburg - Oslo

Farvel Copenhagen! Get ready to visit three countries today: Denmark, Sweden and Norway! Set off at dawn towards the port town of Helsingør. Enjoy views of Kronborg Castle, the setting of Shakespeare's Hamlet, from the water aboard a ferry to Sweden. Back on dry land, travel from the port of Helsingborg through beautiful rural Swedish scenery filled with lakes and forests towards Gothenburg. Arrive in Gothenburg, Sweden’s second city and enjoy an orientation tour with your tour leader before finding a lunch spot. Then, cross the border into our third and final country of the day, Norway! Arrive in Oslo, the capital city. Discover the stunning scenery, cultural attractions and unique architecture with a free evening in the city.

Day 5: Oslo: Free Day

Grab some breakfast before joining a locally guided tour of Oslo! Norway’s capital city seamlessly blends modern city life with easy access to extraordinary nature. See some of Oslo’s top attractions such as Akershus Castle, the Royal Palace and the Oslo Opera House. Once the city tour is over, the rest of the day is free to spend however you wish! Get to know more about this captivating Scandinavian city on the Oslo optional excursion and see some of Olso’s top attractions including the Vigeland Sculpture Park, the Fram Museum and more! Alternatively, wander around and admire the architecture and enjoy the festive atmosphere. Be sure to taste some local cuisine for lunch or dinner, Norwegian salmon anyone?

Day 6: Oslo - Örebro - Stockholm

Say adjø to Norway as the tour returns to Sweden today! Travel through incredible natural beauty and diverse landscapes on the way. Drive through the city of Karlstad located on the shores of Lake Vänern, Sweden’s largest lake, before stopping in Örebro for some free time. Wander through the beautiful historic city centre, catch a glimpse of the stunning castle and grab lunch before hopping back on the coach. Next, the tour continues onwards to Stockholm, the capital of Sweden! Arrive and enjoy a walking and driving tour with a local guide. Tonight, enjoy an included group dinner in this incredible modern yet historic city.

Day 7: Stockholm: Free Day

Enjoy a full free day to explore Stockholm! Choose to learn about Sweden’s nautical history and enjoy a winter cruise on today’s optional excursion. A visit to the fascinating Vasa Museum and a sightseeing cruise around Stockholm’s inner archipelago are included in the optional. Alternatively, soak up the history in Gamla Stan or wrap up warm and stroll through one of the city’s many outdoor spaces. Be sure to try the local cuisine today. You’ll find many delicious options at one of the city’s Christmas markets! Get into the Christmas spirit, do some last-minute Christmas shopping or simply enjoy the festive atmosphere. Warm up with a glass of glögg, Swedish mulled wine, and gingerbread!

Day 8: Stockholm - Sigtuna - Helsinki (Overnight Ferry)

This morning, it’s time to visit another fantastic Swedish destination! Travel through the countryside to Sigtuna, Sweden’s oldest town. Arrive and enjoy an orientation tour to see Sigtuna’s highlights including Stora Gatan, Sigtuna’s main street. Afterwards, make the most of free time to spend as you wish. In the afternoon, get ready to travel towards a brand new country, Finland! Take an overnight ferry, enjoy a buffet dinner on board and spend Christmas Eve admiring the views from the water. Arrive and wake up in Helsinki, Finland’s capital city tomorrow, on Christmas Morning!

Day 9: Helsinki (Christmas Day)

Merry Christmas or hyvää joulua! Wake up in Helsinki, Finland’s gorgeous capital city and get ready for a festive Christmas Day on tour! After arriving in the late morning, set off on a city tour with a local guide. Discover the many architectural and design delights of Helsinki and see top attractions such as the Helsinki Cathedral and Senate Square. The afternoon is free to spend as you wish. Finns are a festive bunch and there will be an abundance of Christmas spirit in the air! Wander around and admire the creative Christmas decorations or visit a local Christmas market. This evening, look forward to a memorable, included festive dinner with the group!

Day 10: Helsinki - Tallinn

After making many festive memories, it's time to bid farewell to Finland and head to the Baltic States! Take an included transfer to the port, and board a ferry to Tallinn, Estonia. Cross the Gulf of Finland and arrive in Tallinn, Estonia’s magical capital. Transfer to your hotel and check in. Then, explore the city’s highlights with a local guide! Tallinn is one of Europe's most enchanting cities, with a strong medieval influence contrasting with its more modern buildings. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Tallinn’s Old Town offers intriguing history while also managing to be a shopper's paradise. See top attractions such as Town Hall Square, St Olav’s Church and the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.

Day 11: Tallinn - Riga

It's time to leave Estonia behind and travel to a new country - Latvia! Travel towards Riga, Latvia’s capital city. On the way, stop over in Pärnu in Estonia. Then, learn about a piece of tragic Latvian history at the Latvian War Cemetery, dedicated to the soldiers who fought in WWI. Later, get ready to encounter all that the vibrant Baltic city of Riga has to offer! Drink in the buzzing atmosphere and energy of its citizens and admire its incredible Art Nouveau architecture. Embark on an orientation tour of Riga with your tour leader to seek out the city's most famous sights and landmarks such as its massive central market.

Day 12: Hill Of Crosses - Vilnius

This morning, hit the road and travel to Lithuania. The first stop of today is the Hill of Crosses in northern Lithuania. This famous pilgrimage site features 100,000 crosses, the first of which were placed here in 1831 after a local rebellion. Continue on towards Vilnius, Lithuania’s capital city. Arrive and enjoy a brief orientation tour of Vilnius with your tour leader followed by free time to explore the city as you wish. The Lithuanian capital offers plenty to see and do - castles, cathedrals, churches, artist ghettos, and more!

Day 13: Trakai - Warsaw

Depart Vilnius and travel towards Warsaw in Poland today. Along the way, make a stopover at Trakai Historical National Park. Have your cameras ready to snap unforgettable photos of Trakai Castle, a 14th-century fortress in the middle of Lake Galvė. Afterwards, hop back aboard the coach and travel onward to Warsaw. Listen in and look around at the amazing sites as your tour leader guides a driving tour en route to Warsaw. Arrive in Warsaw, Poland’s cultural hub which is an enticing and eclectic mix of old and new. Check into the hotel before grabbing dinner with the group at the hotel. Tomorrow the group will explore the old town - it’s set to be another bumper day of inspiring exploration!

Day 14: Warsaw: Free Day

Explore Warsaw’s charming Old Town this morning with a local guide. The Old Town is the beating heart of Warsaw. See the market square which dates back to the 13th century, admire the Royal Castle, the Presidential Palace and more. After the walking tour, make the most of your free day in Warsaw. Make your way to one of the city's epic museums - there are almost too many to choose from! Visit museums that exhibit the history of this incredible city. Wander around the Chopin Museum or the Museum of the History of Polish Jews. Marvel at the extensive collections of the National Museum. Visit the Royal Palace, and perhaps there’ll be a market or free music concert in Łazienki Park.

Day 15: Poznań - Berlin (New Year’S Eve)

Spend the last day of the year heading west to Berlin with a stopover in Ponzań, Poland. Take some free time to grab lunch in the historic old town of the coronation city of the early Polish kings. Continue on to Germany and bustling Berlin! Take an after-dark driving tour through the city upon arrival and see famous sights like the Brandenburg Gate and Checkpoint Charlie. Settle in at the hotel and get ready for dinner at a Bavarian-style beer hall in the city centre. Tonight it’s time to ring in the new year, German style!

Day 16: Berlin: Free Day

Wake up to a brand-new year in the heart of Berlin. Today is yours to explore as your wish. Lace up your walking shoes and go exploring on your own, or join the optional Berlin guided tour of the city. Your guide will lead you on a journey into the past to discover Berlin's most sought-after visitor destinations. Check out the Eastside open-air gallery along the Berlin Wall and make your way to the exceptional museum in the old Jewish quarter. There is so much to explore, and this guided trip of Berlin will make the most of your time in the city.

Day 17: Berlin - Amsterdam

Say Auf Wiedersehen to Berlin as the tour leaves Germany for the long trip back to the Netherlands. Enjoy the scenery as the coach travels through various landscapes. Later, arrive back in Amsterdam. After checking in to the hotel for the final time, choose to celebrate the last night of this magical and festive tour with an optional group dinner with all your travel friends around you.

Day 18: End Of Tour In Amsterdam

After an incredible 18 festive-filled days, your Northern Explorer Christmas & New Year tour comes to an end after breakfast today. Swap contact details with your new tour mates so you can share photos and memories after returning home! We hope to see you back aboard an Expat Explore coach soon!

What's Included

  • 16 nights accommodation in twin rooms.

  • Optional private room upgrade if single travellers wish to have a single room.

  • 17 breakfasts, 7 dinners.

  • 32 included experiences.

  • Free Wi-fi in all hotels.

  • Modern air conditioned coach with reclining seats, TV for showing DVDs, and toilet.

  • Services of your Expat tour leader, who will be on hand with advice and tips to ensure that you get the most from your trip.

Check out our Q&As

  • 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.




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Perfect combination of sites, history, culture and food


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Good experience


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

Kendra Olson   United States

Classic Europe - 14 Days


Such a great trip and saw so many places, if we did this trip on our own I think we would only get half of what we did done in this time period. It definitely was busy with not much down time but we didn’t pay to go be bored. Beautiful and memorable trip!

Travelling Solo  

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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.

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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