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July 27 - August 5, 2019
10 Days / 9 Nights
Tour starts in Vilnius and ends in Tallinn
$3,780 per person / double occupancy
$1,440 optional single supplement
$330 additional night at Kempinski Hotel in Vilnius, including private airport transfer (single or double room)
Includes all fees and taxes
Click on the image to enlarge the map
Framed by the Baltic Sea to the north and west and their former Russian rulers to the east, the Baltic countries of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia have cast off the shadows of the past and embraced a brilliant spirit of independence, honoring their rich history and heritage while looking ahead to a prosperous future. The capital cities of Vilnius, Riga, and Tallinn sit amid spectacular Nordic landscapes and offer a unique insight into Northern Europe that is like taking a trip back in time, walking down peaceful lanes, where the locals are friendly, the food is hearty, and beauty is found around every corner. From medieval towns to the splendid Art Nouveau showcases, from magnificent fairy-tale castles to seaside resorts, and from meticulously restored palaces to wide spaces filled with canola flowers and birch forests, there is a wealth of art, culture, and the natural beauty in the region that makes these hidden gems shine like no place else.
During the Baltic Renaissance tour, history will come to life as we tour impressive castles and soaring cathedrals, beautiful palaces surrounded by elaborate gardens, enjoy the Estonian sauna traditions and spa treatments and a day spent at an old fashioned beach resort. We’ll start with Vilnius, home to over 1,200 medieval buildings as well as splendid churches and palaces constructed in Gothic, Baroque, and Renaissance styles; in Riga, “the Paris of the Baltics”, we’ll marvel at the Renaissance buildings lining the cobble-stone streets, see the city from the perspective of its canals and admire the elegant Art Nouveau architecture; we’ll end our journey in Tallinn, where the grandeur and serenity of the city’s medieval layout complements the urban growth and vibrant culture of modern Estonia.
The Baltic Renaissance tour will start in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius, where we'll experience the living history of Northern Europe's oldest and largest surviving medieval town. Vilnius is a small city of monumental attraction, the streets glowing warm and golden beneath the breathtaking steeples of countless churches built in exquisite detail. Flourishing in the air of independence and freedom after years of strict Soviet rule, and an independent country since 1991, Lithuania was one of the first breakaway republics from the Soviet Union. The city honors the spirit of its struggle by protecting its past while embracing new influences, including world-class cuisine, vibrant cultural performances, and even some modern skyscrapers to compete with centuries-old, towering cathedral spires.
While in Vilnius, we'll explore the cobble-stone lanes, as we tour 16th-century cathedrals and appreciate the well preserved medieval Old Town and the Baroque architecture in the famous Cathedral Square with the Gediminas’ Tower, as well as the Vilnius University and the President's Palace. Beyond Vilnius, we’ll tour the legendary 15th century Trakai Castle, take a boat tour on the lakes surrounding the castle island and learn about the days of glory of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, when it stretched from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea. We'll also see the Lithuanian Open-Air Museum, one of the largest in Europe, located on the picturesque shores of the Kauna Lagoon.
We'll spend 3 nights in the city of Vilnius, staying in an Old World luxury hotel, perfectly located in the heart of the Old Town. The hotel's location will place us in the center of the city and will allow for easy individual exploration;
We'll take an in-depth private tour of the Old Town and the Cathedral Square;
We'll cruise around the Trakai Castle Island, visit the famous Trakai Castle and the Lithuanian Open-Air Museum;
We'll admire the splendid Gothic architecture of St. Anne’s, St. Bernardine’s and St. Michael’s churches; and the 16th-century Gate of Dawn, containing an icon of The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Mercy, said to have miraculous powers;
We'll visit the revered Hill of Crosses, a monument to Lithuanian martyrs and the spirit of survival;
The second city we’ll visit during the Baltic Renaissance tour will be the Latvian capital of Riga, the “Paris of the Baltics,” and the largest city in the Baltic States. Riga is divided into the Art Nouveau New Town, home of the most Art Nouveau buildings in Europe, a really amazing sight, and the medieval Old Town, populated by buildings first constructed 800 years ago. We’ll tour both sides of the city, on foot and by boat, cruising its' canals.
On our way to Riga, we’ll visit the Rundale Palace, a baroque palace built for the Dukes of Courland and recently renovated after suffering damage during the Latvian War of Independence. We’ll tour the most fascinating sights of Riga's Old Town, including the Dome Cathedral, the Church of St. Peter, the Three Brothers Medieval Houses, the Riga Castle, and the Swedish Gate. In the New Town, we'll admire the enduring style of Art Nouveau architecture. Venturing out of the city, we'll visit the town of Sigulda in the primeval Gauja River Valley, set among pristine birch and pine forests and dotted with red sandstone caves, to admire the 13th century Crusader fortifications, the lovingly restored Sigulda Castle and the medieval Turaida Castle.
- We will spend 3 nights in Riga, experiencing the best that the city has to offer, while staying at a luxury hotel just across from the opulent National Opera House;
- We'll visit Rundale Palace, the most outstanding monument of Baroque and Rococo art and architecture in Latvia, designed by Bartolomeo Rastrelli who also designed St. Petersburg’s Hermitage.
- We'll tour the picturesque town of Sigulda, home to the Neo-Gothic Sigulda Castle and medieval Turaida Castle, overlooking the primeval Turaida Reserve;
- We'll dine at authentic restaurants to experience the atmosphere of historic taverns, featuring both traditional and contemporary Latvian cuisine.
The final city on the Baltic Renaissance tour is Tallinn, the capital and cultural center of Estonia. Often called the “Silicon Valley of Europe”, Tallinn is a fantastic blend of historical riches and progressive movements, a birthplace of many influential companies, including Skype. In contrast to the skyscrapers and glittering lights of the business district, Tallinn’s Old Town is one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe, its skyline bracketed by Gothic spires, ancient fortifications and Hanseatic merchant houses, laid out on winding streets within the well preserved city walls. This fairy-tale town is so bursting with beauty and wonder, it’s as if time hasn’t touched it at all.
In Tallinn, we’ll tour the two distinct halves of the Old Town; the Upper Town, also known as Toompea, home to the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the Gothic Dome church, and the Lower Town, populated by guild and merchant houses, churches, and the Gothic Town Hall. We’ll visit the gorgeous Kadriorg Palace, built for Catherine I of Russia and currently housing the Kadriorg Art Museum; the park on the palace grounds is also the venue for the famous Estonian Song Festival. We’ll tour an open air museum by bicycle and top off our Estonian journey by treating ourselves to an authentic Estonian sauna experience. We'll also visit the old fashioned seaside resort of Parnu, Estonia's summer capital, known as the French Riviera of Northern Europe.
We'll spend 3 nights in Tallinn, staying in a boutique hotel in the picturesque medieval Old Town, close to Toompea Castle and within walking distance of the town’s attractions;
We'll take in-depth private tours of the historic Old Town, including Toompea Castle, the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and Dome church;
We'll visit the elegant Kadriorg Palace, once the residence of Catherine I of Russia and now home to a prized collection of art;
We'll stop at the seaside town of Parnu, where we'll enjoy the beachside promenades and have lunch at an elegant spa;
We'll tour the Estonian open air museum on foot or by bicycle for a unique local experience;
- We’ll immerse ourselves in the relaxation and healing properties of the Estonian sauna tradition;
- Throughout the tour, we will enjoy the best of Estonian cuisine at carefully selected fine restaurants and an authentic medieval merchant house.
- 3 nights in Vilnius, 3 nights in Riga, and 3 nights in Tallinn, in centrally located, upscale 5-star hotels;
- Porterage at all 3 hotels;
- Private airport transfers on arrival and on departure, private bus transportation between Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn, all transportation in each city;
- Bottled water throughout the tour;
- A la carte or tasting menu meals: traditional or vegetarian options: 9 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 6 dinners, including drinks;
- Professional local guides and an experienced tour director;
- All cultural activities as per itinerary;
- Estonian Sauna and spa experience;
- All fees and admissions for activities mentioned in the itinerary;
- All guides', drivers' and restaurants' gratuities.
Additional/optional costs may include: optional travel insurance, optional single room supplement, early hotel check-in, meals or activities not mentioned in the itinerary, tour director gratuities, room service, mini bar charges, telephone charges and other personal expenses.
The cost does not include airfare.
- Old Town of Vilnius
- Views from the top of Vilnius University Tower
- Cruise around Trakai Castle Island
- Medieval Trakai Castle
- Lithuanian Open-Air Museum
- Hill of Crosses
- Baroque Rundale Palace
- Art Nouveau tour of Riga
- Medieval tour of Riga
- Canal boat tour of Riga
- Sigulda and Turaida Castles
- Seaside resort town of Parnu
- Open Air Museum of Tallinn
- Estonian Sauna and Spa
- Hanseatic League city of Tallinn
|What Makes This Trip Special |
- Accommodations at centrally located, luxury hotels in Vilnius, Riga, and Tallinn
- Elegant restaurants and a la carte dining including wine, throughout the tour
- Knowledgeable and passionate local guides
- Exclusive experiences, not available to larger groups
- Estonian sauna and spa
- A small group of maximum 16 women
- Knowledgeable and experienced tour director
- No forced shopping