RYBAK EUROPE TOUR -- APRIL 2 - 18, 2020
POSTPONED UNTIL SEPT. - OCT.
Thursday, April 2
Depart from Houston airport and fly in direction of Europe, France, Nice.
Friday, April 3
Arrival in Nice, France. The luxury bus with attendant team (including your tour guide) will be waiting for you at the airport to take you to the hotel in Nice. Check- in our hotel, and then enjoy free time for yourselves to discover this lovely city on the French Riviera!
Saturday, April 4
Leave the hotel in the morning for a tour of the state of Monaco. The Principality of Monaco is a sovereign state whose territory covers only 0.75 sq miles. We will tour this little state, see the Cathedral of Monaco, Prince`s Palace in the Old Monaco-Ville which also offers a breathtaking panoramic view overlooking the Port and Monte-Carlo. Of course we cannot skip seeing the famous Monte Carlo Casino. In the afternoon we will continue on the way to Italy, port of Savona where we will embark the Brand New Flagship of Costa Cruises – Costa Smeralda, the newest and largest ship currently in the Mediterranean! Check-in our balcony cabins, security training, tour of the ship and time to relax and enjoy the view of the Italian Riviera!
Leaving the amazingly beautiful port of Savona at 6:00 PM is truly an unforgettable and magical experience!
Sunday, April 5
Marseille, FRANCE 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
When cruising southern France, you have to know that Marseille is the most renowned and populated metropolitan area in the country after Paris and Lyon. When you alight from your COSTA cruise ship, the cafés around the Vieux Port, where glistening fish are sold straight off the boats on quai des Belges, are wonderful spots to observe the city’s street life.
Particularly good in the afternoon is the north (Le Panier) side, where the terraces are sunnier and the views better. The best view of the Vieux Port is from the Palais du Pharo, on the headland beyond Fort St-Nicolas, or, for a wider angle, from Notre-Dame-de-la-Garde, the city’s Second Empire landmark atop the La Garde hill. To the north of the Vieux Port is the oldest part of Marseille, Le Panier.
You can enjoy many COSTA cruise excursions from the Vieux Port. Capital of the Catholic Church during the early Middle Ages and for centuries a major artistic centre, Avignon remains another unmissable excursion. Low medieval walls still encircle Avignon’s old center, as it nestles up against a ninety-degree bend in the Rhône river.
Monday, April 6
Barcelona, SPAIN 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Spain’s second city, and the self-confident capital and port of Catalunya - vibrates with life, and there’s certainly not another city in the country to touch it for sheer style, looks or energy. A cruise excursion to Barcelona city center will take you to discover its world-class art museums and its fashionable designer restaurants, bars, galleries and shops. And in Antoni Gaudí’s extraordinary church of the Sagrada Família and the world-famous boulevard that is the Ramblas, you have two Mediterranean sights that are high up on any list!
Tuesday, April 7
Palma de Mallorca, SPAIN 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
In Spain there is only one place that does holidays, leisure, shopping and culture at once: Palma de Mallorca! Upon arrival in Palma de Mallorca, you can focus on the Island’s various activities: shopping, medieval buildings, walks on the beach or mountain climbing, whatever you desire. Go downtown for a stroll to the port of Palma de Mallorca, while architecture lovers will know that many historic buildings in the city have an impressive courtyard inside, like the Museum of Contemporary Art. Get some "ensaïmadas" to eat on the way to the Cathedral or on one of the island’s beaches. Don’t forget to visit the “Paseo del Borne” to do some shopping.
Wednesday, April 8
Day at sea. RELAX & PARTY ON THE SHIP!
Thursday, April 9
Civitavecchia (near Rome), ITALY 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Civitavecchia, a former Etruscan port, is the seaport for Rome. And what about it? Everything here reflects the glorious power of people who ruled the world.
Located in cove, protected to the north by Mignone and south by the Marangone, the Civitavecchia port was built on the Tyrrhenian coast in Etruscan times and still preserves traces of this history. In particular, the Michelangelo fort and the old town with its 9th-century walls bear witness to the splendour of a medieval past.
On a shore excursion you book with COSTA, you can visit Rome (1.5 hour drive), the grandiose capital with its world-famous monuments: the Forum, the Colosseum, the Pantheon, Trajan's column, St Peter's Basilica, the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, Trevi Fountain, Piazza Venezia, the Spanish Steps and so much more!
Friday, April 10
La Spezia, ITALY 8:30 AM – 8:30 PM
The small port of La Spezia, an impressively sweeping panorama of islands in the Italian Riviera, is located between Genoa and Pisa. It is south of Liguria, on a mountainous coast at the bottom of the Gulf of Poets. The port of La Spezia is very famous for its military arsenal. A stop at this port will allow you to visit several museums, including the Amedeo Lia inside the monastery of San Francesco di Paola. A shore excursion booked with COSTA can take you to visit the Cinque Terre (Five Lands) - named for five tiny villages – Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore – wedged into a series of coves between sheer cliffs, whose comparative remoteness and dramatic positions make the region the principal scenic highlight of the whole Riviera. Or other excursion options can bring you to beautiful Florence or take you to the amazing Leaning Tower of Pisa, an imposing structure that appears almost weightless thanks to story after story of graceful arches.
Saturday, April 11
Arrival to the port of Savona in the morning. Our bus will be waiting for us and take us to the city of Milan, located in Lombardy in Northern Italy. It´s the country’s financial and fashion capital. Home to designers like Prada, Armani and Versace, Milan’s impressive shopping centers attract nearly as many visitors as the city’s centuries-old cultural institutions. With attractions in Milan like the Duomo Cathedral, La Scala opera it’s no wonder that Milan is Italy’s third most visited city after Rome and Venice. We will have a short walking tour of Milan to see the main attractions: La Scala opera house, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II – the oldest shopping mall with luxurious boutiques such as Versace, Prada and other famous brands. We will also see the Duomo Cathedral and Duomo square after which you will have some free time for yourselves and shopping in the city. Continue on our way and spend a night in the area of Lake Como.
Sunday, April 12
Departure to Tirano, where we get on the Bernina Express train for an unbelievably beautiful scenic ride! A particular high-point of the ride is the panoramic view as it passes mighty glaciers on its ascend from a land of swaying palms in Tirano. We will experience one of the most spectacular ways to cross the Alps. This winding mountain railway connects northern and southern Europe without the use of any toothed-wheel mechanism. We will end up at one of the most famous holiday destinations in the world - located in Engadin on the southern side of the Alps at 6,089 ft. above sea level – in between Zurich, Milan and Munich. We will continue with our bus to Innsbruck, Austria, a beautiful Tyrolean town lying in the valley of river Inn. Check-in our hotel, then attend a show called Tyrolean Evening with typical Austrian music, dances, yodeling, and playing different special musical instruments, all while nestled in the foothills of the Alps!
Monday, April 13
We will start the day with one of the highest points of Innsbruck for a spectacular view of the city and surrounding mountains from the top of ski-jump which was featured in the winter Olympics. Then drive to Wattens just outside of Innsbruck which is known for the production of world known Swarovski jewelery. We will view the permanent exhibition of Swarovski Crystal World, famous producer of crystal items like figurines, optics and jewelry. You can shop in the largest Swarovski store in the world for reasonable prices. Then leave for Salzburg, city of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. You will have a guided tour of the historical city, see Mozart’s birthplace, famous boulevard Getreidegasse, Residenz Square, the Salzburg Cathedral, and the fortress Hohensalzburg overlooking the city. You will also have some free time in the historical downtown. Check-in our hotel and then enjoy dinner as we wind down from another amazing day in Europe!
Tuesday, April 14
Leave for the Czech Republic. Stop en route in Vienna, the capital of Austria. This city used to be a capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire for more than six centuries which left a definite mark on it. From the windows of your bus you will see the highlights of historical Vienna. The circle within the Ringroad is an unforgettable experience, constructed in 1857, 2.5 miles long, surrounded by the representative buildings (National Opera House, New Town Hall, National Theatre, Parliament, museums, universities, fancy hotels and shops). Have your cameras ready! We will then get off the bus close to the main square which can boast of beautiful St. Stephen Church and shopping opportunities. In the afternoon continue on our way to Roznov pod Radhostem. This is the area of probably the biggest emigration to Texas in the last century and a place where many Texas Czechs have their ancestry. Welcome PARTY with dinner in the evening at Koliba Kordulka – authentic Vallachian restaurant.
Wednesday, April 15
Today we will enjoy the beauties of Wallachia region, the eastern part of central Moravia. Visit one of the most popular tourist destinations in this part of the country – the Wallachian Open-Air-Museum. The buildings more than 100 years old stand here all originally furnished. We will tour the Wallachian Little Wooden Village including the church, convenience store, post office, mayor`s house and other period buildings. Then the bus will take us to neighboring town Frenstat pod Radhostem where our group will be officially welcome at the town hall. We will also see the permanent exhibition of local museum which is called There Behind the Sea and which explains the reason of emigration to Texas from this area, conditions for emigration and represents at many times the distressful journey across the ocean. Describes uneasy creation of Czech settlements in Texas, life in Czech communities and speaks about important personalities from public life. In the afternoon, you will have TWO OPTIONS: You can rest at the hotel, use the wellness area, book a massage and do whatever you desire
OR you can depart to Lichnov to view one of a kind collection of records on emigration of locals to Texas.
In the evening PARTY and DANCE to typical Czech and Wallachian music in the hotel restaurant.
Thursday, April 16
In the morning leave for Prague, capital city of the Czech Republic. We will stop en route at Moravian Karst to tour caves. You will walk through mighty underground spaces and passages decorated with stalactites and stalagmites, as far as the bottom of the world-famous Macocha (Step Mother) Abyss. The foot walk is followed by a motor boat ride along the underground river Punkva. The ride includes the visit of the Masaryk´s Dome, one of the most beautiful caves of the Moravian Karst. The Punkva Caves are an extension of the longest cave system in the Czech Republic, the Amateur´s Cave, whose passages are over 21 miles long.
After lunch we will continue on our way to Prague, check-in our well located hotel in the historical center. In the evening, we will be treated to a dinner and folklore show where you can enjoy a great program with examples of Czech typical dances, songs and playing different instruments – all while you enjoy cold pivo, Moravian vino, and wonderful Czech Cuisine!
Friday, April 17
This day we will tour the city of Prague! Guided walking tour of Prague begins with Prague Castle and then on to St. Vitus Cathedral, Hradcany quarter, and the Church of Our Lady Victorious which houses the famous wax statue of the Infant Jesus of Prague. We will walk across the famous 14th century Charles Bridge and continue on to Old Town Square to see the Astronomical clock. After lunch in the restaurant serving traditional Czech cuisine, we will continue and end up the tour at Wenceslas Square, which has historically been the sight of many events including the 1989 Velvet Revolution demonstrations. Then you will have some free time for individual sightseeing and great shopping at the numerous stores lining the Wenceslas square.
The SECOND OPTION is to just enjoy Prague on your own as our hotel is situated in the heart of this majestic city, in the Old Town district and join us possibly for lunch by the Old Town Square.
In the evening, a historical tram will take us through old Prague just by the Vltava River where we will take a 2 hour buffet dinner boat cruise. You will be able to view the beautiful sights of Prague illuminated at night!
Saturday, April 18
Departure home from the airport in Prague on a flight to Houston. HOME SWEET HOME!
Itinerary subject to change depending on availability.
Email Edita Rybak for more info:
firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 512-963-6660
Please send you check to:
603 N Texana St.
Hallettsville, TX 77964