Central European tours

“Discover five countries in two weeks on this fascinating small group tour of central Europe, taking in capitals, culture and regional curiosities, too.”


Czech Republic | Prague | Cesky Krumlov | Telc | Znojmo | wine growing town of Mikulov | Znojmo Catacombs | Lednice-Valtice | Slovakia | Skalica | Straznice, an outdoor museum | Plze wine cellars | Bratislava | Austria | Vienna | Hungary | Sopron | Budapest | Banska Stiavnica | Tatra Mountains | Poland | Krakow | optional: Wieliczka Salt Mine; Auschwitz

Description of Central European tours

There’s so much cultural heritage and beautiful scenery to explore in Central Europe, and this two week Central European tour takes a comprehensive look at this diverse part of the world. Taking in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, Hungary and Poland, the tour travels to pretty old villages, ancient castles, wine cellars, catacombs and, of course, the historic capital cities of each country.

This tour is biaised towards the region’s cultural highlights, from Prague Castle and Renaissance architecture in Telc, to the Mozart Museum in Vienna and Krakow Jewish Quarter, but there is also time to explore the landscapes of this region, with a few days in the Tatra Mountains, where brown bears and wolves still roam. To satisfy your appetite as well as your curiosity, you’ll be able to sample regional treats, too, from the traditional Trdelnik cake made at a former Franciscan monastery and the wine from the cellars at Plze.

Travel in a small group of no more than 16 people and outside of the big cities, accommodation is in locally-run and locally staffed accommodation.

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

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15 Sep 2019
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10 May 2020
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31 May 2020
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05 Jul 2020
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02 Aug 2020
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30 Aug 2020
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13 Sep 2020
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Holiday type

Small group holiday

Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.

What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
Valerie Parkinson
Meet a group Leader
Name: Valerie Parkinson

Story: The first British woman to climb Manaslu, Valerie climbed Everest for her 50th birthday. She’s spent fourteen Christmas Days trekking to Everest Base Camp, and is involved insetting up Responsible Tourism initiatives in the Himalayas.
Roshan Fernando
Meet a local guide
Name: Roshan Fernando

Story: Roshan has led over 130 trips – he adores showing travellers around Sri Lanka. He won the company Leader Award in 2010, but his career highlight was working on their Tsunami Project – which earned him a responsible tourism award.

Responsible tourism

Central European tours

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.


Local Craft and Culture:
There is a heavy influence of culture on our itinerary throughout the trip, from Prague Castle and Renaissance architecture in Telc, to the Mozart Museum in Vienna and Krakow Jewish Quarter. Our entrance fees for the duration contribute to the upkeep of these important historical, artistic and cultural resources. In terms of local production, we are able to visit a former Franciscan monastery to see how traditional Trdelnik cake is made. At the Plze wine cellars, we are also able to sample locally made wine.

Accommodation and Meals:
Outside of big cities we stay in locally-run and locally staffed accommodation. The main destinations on the tour are well known to international tourism; however the more rural areas, particularly of Slovakia and Hungary, are not on the regular tourist map. Supporting these smaller businesses in rural locations not only boosts economy by gives the client a more authentic experience. All breakfasts are provided and ingredients will be locally sourced where possible. Where meals are not provided, your guide will be able to point out some independent cafes and restaurants serving delicious cuisine typical of that area.

A Fair Deal:
We have established a long term partnership with a local operator, who is committed to promoting tourism as a means of income throughout Central Europe, in particular to the rural communities of Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Your guides are native Central Europeans and in exchange for their local expertise, they are paid and treated fairly. The leaders will give a briefing on responsible tourism issues to help you understand how you can help reduce your impact and maximise the benefits to the local community from your visit.

UK Office:
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.

Group Size:
This small group tour has a maximum of 16 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

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