Grand European Family Holiday - 12 Days

Grand European Family Holiday

TIME OF YEAR – Jun – Aug

Get an insider’s look at Harry Potter’s secret London, with an exclusive ride on the Knightbus… Take a spin on the London Eye, soaring high above the city in a private capsule… Visit a lavish 17th-century castle outside of Paris (where children dress in costume and learn about what life was like for a kid in the court of Louis XIV) and the top of the Eiffel Tower… Go on a scavenger hunt in Musée du Louvre, where the clues are famous works of art… Hunt for truffles in the hills of Umbria in central Italy, accompanied by dogs trained to find them… discover “chocolate art”… Learn the art of mosaics at a hands-on workshop in Rome… enjoy an after-hours guided visit through the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel (without the crowds)… get a taste of the region when you dine at a private villa in Italy, an Alain Ducasse brasserie in Paris and a traditional English pub… stay in historic hotels deeply intertwined with their destinations… and much, much more.

Only With Tauck

After-hours guided tour of the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel, without the crowds.

Tour prices are per person in U.S. dollars. All hotel accommodations, motor coach transportation, entertainment, special dinners, sightseeing, porterage, and the services of local guides, drivers and the Tauck Director are included. Transportation is included from Heathrow / Gatwick Airports or St. Pancras/Waterloo Train Stations to the Langham Hotel, London, regardless of the time you check in to the hotel, provided you have furnished us with accurate flight arrival information at least three weeks prior to the start of the tour. If you are arriving into another local train station please retain a receipt for your transfer and submit it to your Tour Director for reimbursement. Transportation from the Boscolo Exedra Hotel, Rome to Leonardo de Vinci – Fiumicino International Airport or a local train station is also included when you check out of the hotel. Transportation to and from airports and train stations may be shared with other Tauck guests.

Age Recommendations – Children 8 years of age or older at the time of travel are welcome on this Tauck journey. Based upon our experience with family travelers, we have a minimum recommended age for each journey to encourage comfort and enjoyment for all of our guests. All children must be accompanied on activities by a parent or guardian. At least one guest in the traveling party must be 21 years of age or older in order to make a reservation.

Rates and schedules are not guaranteed until booked and will vary based on departure date.

Day 1
Arrive London... and become a detective

Tour begins: 3:30 PM, The Langham, London. A transfer is included from Heathrow Airport or Gatwick Airport to The Langham, London, a five-star luxury hotel in the heart of the city not far from Oxford Street. The Langham was Europe’s first grand hotel when it opened in 1865, and has remained a favorite of royalty, dignitaries and celebrities ever since. Settle in, then start off your London, Paris, Rome adventure with a walking tour along Regent Street, one of the city’s most exciting and fashionable shopping districts. There’s more here than meets the eye, as you’ll discover in a game of detection that tests your powers of observation and deductive reasoning. Spot visual clues in the neighborhood and pick up points along the way as you try to beat the clock and find the clues, to solve a mystery that involves time-traveling detectives, Sherlock Holmes, and ultimately, the Tardis of Dr. Who. Arrive at the BBC Broadcasting House for the final piece of the puzzle; can you break the code that opens the strongbox with the secret inside? The BBC is one of the most advanced broadcast and production centers in the world, where TV news and entertainment shows are made. Return to the hotel for a welcome reception that includes a tea party for kids (in fact, the Langham is thought to be the birthplace of the Victorian afternoon tea tradition, serving tea to the cream of London society since 1865!) and a welcome dinner.

Meals – Dinner

Lodging – The Langham, London

Day 2
Harry Potter... and the infamous Tower

Begin a full day of sightseeing with a Harry Potter-themed tour that includes a very special feature: Hogwarts has lent us the Knightbus for a few hours (the bus that comes to the rescue of stranded wizards) for an inside look at Harry Potter’s secret London. On board will be games, quizzes, and entertainment, but keep your wands and spells at the ready: you never know when the Dark Forces may appear… Your wizard adventure ends at the infamous Tower of London, the medieval castle and fortress where, back in the day, traitors to the king were imprisoned (and sometimes lost their heads). Meet the colorful guards known as Beefeaters on a guided tour that includes the Crown Jewels, the armory of antique weapons, and Traitors Gate as you learn the fascinating history of the “Bloody Tower,” steeped in ghost stories and legends. Following lunch at the Tower, return to your hotel for an afternoon at leisure. This evening, get a taste of another English tradition when you dine at the Iron Duke in Mayfair, a traditional London pub.

Meals – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Lodging – The Langham, London

Day 3
The London Eye & a walk through Southwark

Go soaring over the city on the London Eye, one of the world’s largest observation wheels. From your private capsule, on a clear day, you can see 30 miles in all directions, taking in all the glorious sights of London in one go. Feet back on the ground, a walking tour reveals London “now and then,” including a look at William Shakespeare in London. The walking tour takes you to Borough Market in Southwark, one of the largest and oldest food markets in the city. Sometimes called “London’s Larder,” its colorful market stalls are a haven for chefs, restaurateurs and connoisseurs, offering produce and artisan foods from all over the world, where time at leisure just might include a gourmet sandwich (and maybe recall a scene from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, which was filmed here). Return to the hotel, where the afternoon and evening are free.

Meals – Breakfast

Lodging – The Langham, London

Day 4
Eurostar to Paris and a River Seine cruise

The next stop on your family’s London, Paris, Rome adventure begins at St. Pancras Station, the photogenic rail terminal that’s been featured in the Harry Potter movies – Platform 93⁄4 is preserved as a permanent tribute. That’s not your boarding area today, however; instead, settle into your seat aboard the Eurostar for a ride under the English Channel – you’ll arrive in Paris in just a little over two hours. Get a closeup look at the city from a boat cruise on the River Seine, then enjoy dinner at Restaurant Champeaux, chef Alain Ducasse’s new “brasserie for the 21st century” in Paris’ Forum des Halles. Arrive at your five-star luxury hotel in the heart of the Opera District, only steps from the Garnier Opera House and the Louvre. Built in lavish Second Empire style, this hotel is famous as the site where in 1895 the Lumiere Brothers showcased their invention, the cinematograph, and projected the first motion pictures in history. Your hotel for the next three nights is the legendary Hotel Barrière Le Fouquet’s Paris – enjoy one of the best addresses in the city, just a short distance from the Arc de Triomphe, between Avenue George V and the Champs-Elysées.

Meals – Breakfast, Dinner

Lodging – Hotel Barrière Le Fouquet’s Paris

Day 5
The Louvre & a special evening of "chocolat"...

The vast building known as Musée du Louvre was the king’s residence in Paris until 1682, when Louis XIV built himself a new palace at Versailles and left the Louvre to house his royal art collection. The collection was confiscated after the French Revolution, and the Louvre opened to the public as a museum in 1793. Today, it is the most visited museum in the world, with 70,000 works of art and archaeological treasures in 650,000 square feet of gallery space, including priceless, world-famous paintings like The Mona Lisa. You’ll become familiar with some of them this morning on a scavenger hunt through the museum’s maze of galleries; a mystery must be solved, and the clues are hidden in plain sight among the art on display. The rest of the morning and afternoon are yours to spend as you please, perhaps visiting some of the other museums close by. Late in the afternoon, you’ll see the iconic Eiffel Tower before an early dinner at a local Parisian restaurant. But be sure to leave some room for dessert… because your next stop this evening is a Tauck Exclusive – a private visit to the shop of a renowned chocolatier, where they mastermind and craft some of the city’s most exquisite chocolate and caramel creations. You’ll have your own opportunity to create some “chocolate art” – and of course do some tasting (while parents enjoy a glass of wine)!

Meals – Breakfast, Dinner

Lodging – Hotel Barrière Le Fouquet’s Paris

Day 6
Experiencing life at the "Château"

Leave your hotel for a trip outside the city to the opulent Château Vaux Le Vicomte, built by in the 15th century by Nicolas Fouquet, superintendent of finances for the court of Lous XIV. The castle was built to impress, with its dazzling interior and formidable exterior (surrounded by a moat) and its lavish garden, stretching nearly a mile and a half. Here you will discover a royal tale unlike any other… because for the unfortunate Fouquet, the grandeur was short-lived. He threw a spectacular party at the château in honor of the king – and when Louis saw the luxury Fouquet lived in, he suspected his underling was embezzling from the treasury… and threw him in prison. Louis XIV then hired Fouquet’s architects to build him an even bigger, more spectacular residence… the palace at Versailles. Get an inside look at Fouquet’s lair and learn more about its history on a guided tour of the castle and its garden; younger visitors tour in period costume, and learn about what life was like for children in Louis XIV’s court. Lunch at a restaurant on the grounds before returning to your Paris hotel for an evening spent as you please.

Meals – Breakfast, Lunch

Lodging – Hotel Barrière Le Fouquet’s Paris

Day 7
To Italy & truffle hunting in Umbria

Your London Paris Rome family vacation proceeds apace: a morning flight from Paris lands you in Rome, and from there you’ll journey to the pastoral landscapes of Umbria in central Italy. En route, contemplate the answer to this question: What is the most expensive food in the world? Would you believe it is a somewhat rare, pungent fungus that grows wild under the hills of Umbria, and is hunted and dug out of the ground by specially trained dogs? You are about to become acquainted with truffles (or in Italian, tartufo), a delicacy that is an indispensable ingredient in Umbrian cuisine, and a special prize to chefs and gourmets around the world. Truffles are not only pricey but perishable: they begin to lose their flavor once out of the ground, and must be flown as soon as possible to high-end restaurants in Europe and the United States (where the addition of fresh truffles can raise the price of a hamburger to hundreds of dollars). You’ll soon discover why truffles are so valuable on a visit to a farm San Pietro al Pettine, where you’ll enjoy a truffle-hunting demonstration and a tasting, plus an early dinner at the family-run farm which is one of the major purveyors of truffles and truffle products in Italy. Then you’re off to the hills in competing groups to hunt the elusive fungi yourself, accompanied by the trained dogs to sniff them out. In olden days, pigs were used for their keen sense of smell… but, unfortunately, the pigs had to be replaced as they would eat the truffles as soon as they found them… Return from the hunt with your prizes and continue on to your lovely hotel in the town of Gubbio, perched on a hilltop surrounded by vineyards and olive groves. Your hotel is elegant and unique in design, having formerly been a medieval village with a church and a 17th-century monastery; amenities include a swimming pool, tennis court, gym, and spa; dinner is at your leisure this evening.

Meals – Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8
A perfect day in the Umbrian countryside

Experience the rural heart of Italy in this beautiful region of mountains and plains, vineyards and rolling hills dotted with medieval castles and hilltop villages. Visit a farm that raises alpacas and angora goats for their exquisite fleece, prized in the fashion industry. Lunch at a country house in the Upper Tiber Valley (where Tuscany and Umbria meet) for a taste of authentic Umbrian cuisine, which typically includes wild game, pasta, legume soups, and wild mushrooms (flavors enhanced, naturally, with truffles); there are also games and entertainment for the younger set. Return to your hotel; dinner is at your leisure this evening.

Meals – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9
Ceramics, olive oil & wine en route to Rome

Depart your hotel this morning for an excursion into Umbrian life and culture, en route to Rome. Stop in Deruta, a village famous for centuries for its handpainted ceramics, and watch a demonstration by craftspeople at a local workshop. In Montecchio, get a guided tour (and tasting) at Frantoio Bartolomei, renowned makers of olive oil (an important product of this region) and see a demonstration of their time-honored methods; the family has been producing oil for centuries, and their museum of vintage machinery includes a 16th-century olive press. Enjoy a tour and tasting (and lunch) at Palazzone Winery, inside a renovated medieval barn in the hills near Orvieto; this internationally renowned estate specializes in Orvieto Classico and other varietals indigenous to the area – the gorgeous vineyard also has a beautiful view of Orvieto Cathedral. Arrive in Rome late afternoon (last stop on our London, Paris, Rome family adventure) for a three-night stay in deluxe rooms at Boscolo Exedra Rome, a neo- Classical palace on the Piazza della Republica, near the Baths of Diocletian and Michelangelo’s Basilica degli Angeli in the heart of the city. Dine at the hotel this evening.

Meals – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10
Rome & after-hours at the Vatican Museums

Get an orientation tour of the Eternal City this morning aboard a private double-decker bus. You’ll explore the awe-inspiring ruins of the Colosseum (the ancient arena where gladiator battles were fought) on a guided visit. Enjoy free time this afternoon to explore the city on your own, then join us this evening for a Tauck Exclusive – an after-hours guided visit to the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel (subject to availability, the day of your visit may vary). Millions of people visit the museums every year, but tonight you will experience the magnificent galleries, including the Candelabra Gallery, Map Gallery and the Tapestries, as well as Michelangelo’s stunning Sistine Chapel ceiling frescoes, without the crowds. You won’t be rushed, you won’t have to maneuver through dense crowds of people blocking your views, and your family will be able to take time to contemplate and enjoy the inspirational and artistic treasures.

Meals – Breakfast

Day 11
Sightseeing safari & more in Rome

In Rome, monumental art and sculpture are everywhere, part of the rich visual backdrop of urban life. This morning, as you explore the city’s main piazzas, the details in all that public art stand out in a “sightseeing safari” in which kids spot sculpted animals of all kinds (including dragons, sea horses and other real and mythical creatures) on fountains, buildings, and monuments… and there might even be some surprises in store! Later, attend a workshop on the making of mosaic art (a skill that goes back to ancient times) and take part in a hands-on demonstration. Your London Paris Rome family vacation concludes this evening with an exclusive farewell dinner at a villa outside of the city. Enjoy a farewell reception, dinner, music and entertainment… and a fitting farewell to your amazing family holiday – a fireworks display.

Meals – Breakfast, Dinner

Day 12
Journey home

Your London Paris Rome family vacation ends in Rome. Fly home anytime. A transfer from Hotel Boscolo Excedra Roma to Leonardo da Vinci Airport in Fiumicino is included. Allow a minimum of 3 hours for flight check-in.

Meals – Breakfast

What's Included

  • All gratuities to Tauck Director, local guides & drivers
  • An insider tour of Harry Potter’s Secret London
  • Three-night stay at the London hotel that played a major role in the creation of Sherlock Holmes
  • A time-travel detective game along Regent Street in London
  • A ride on the London Eye, the city’s giant observation wheel
  • Tea party for kids at The Langham, London, thought to be the birthplace of the afternoon tea tradition Dinner at a traditional English pub
  • Travel aboard the Eurostar from London to Paris (under the Channel)
  • A scavenger hunt at Musée du Louvre
  • Cruise on the magnificent River Seine
  • Creating "chocolate art" with a renowned chocolatier
  • Visit to a castle – kids learn "royal customs" dressed in period costume
  • Dinner at a Parisian restaurant
  • Flight from Paris to Rome
  • A hunt for truffles in the hills of Umbria
  • Wine tasting and tour at an Umbrian winery
  • Visit to an alpaca farm and an opportunity to learn about country life
  • Demonstration of historic and modern techniques used to produce olive oil
  • After-hours guided tour of the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel, without the crowds
  • A hands-on lesson in mosaic art at a workshop in Rome; sightseeing safari in Rome
  • Farewell reception, dinner and evening at a private villa outside Rome
  • Multiple-night stays at premier hotels in London, Paris, Rome and the Italian countryside
  • Airport transfers on arrival and departure as noted

Nights 1-3 London, England

The Langham, London

Ideally situated in the heart of London’s West End near Regent’s Park, The Langham, London is convenient to a wide array of museums, restaurants, and notable attractions. The décor of the comfortable guest rooms reflects traditional English style. The indoor swimming pool was once a bank vault and the gym offers state-of-the-art exercise equipment. The elegant Palm Court restaurant appears today just as it did when the hotel opened as Europe’s first grand hotel in 1865; the tradition of afternoon tea was born right here! The Landau Restaurant’s dramatic design mixes modern Orientalism with the romance of Victoriana, while its cuisine entices with the finest contemporary European dishes, the best of British seasonal ingredients and a few intriguing twists. Enjoy a cocktail at Artesian, a glamorous cocktail bar featuring brilliant interiors that combine a taste of exotic Orientalism, the romance of nostalgia and decidedly alluring, contemporary touches.

Nights 4-6 Paris, France

Hotel Barrière Le Fouquet’s Paris

Completely renovated, legendary Hotel Barrière Le Fouquet’s Paris enjoys one of the best addresses in the city, just a short distance from the Arc de Triomphe, between Avenue George V and the Champs-Elysées. Boasting gourmet French cuisine, refined cocktails, the private pool of Spa Diane Barrière… and décor glinting with gold. Guest rooms, renovated in 2017, feature the same gold touches on the Jacques Garcia’s interior decor and a luxurious warmth, with marble bathrooms. Since 1899, Fouquet’s restaurant has embodied the chic spirit of Paris. The legendary restaurant features traditional Parisian brasserie décor and displays its timeless bond with the Arts and Motion Pictures. For over 40 years, the César Awards ceremony has brought together the world of French cinema within this prestigious setting. This historical setting opens up to two sumptuous terraces, on the Champs-Elysées and George V avenues. Watch the procession of passers-by from all over the world; the fine décor of the restaurant, which is a listed historical monument. Chef Pierre Gagnaire celebrates the rebirth of the famous brasserie and adds his creative Signature to the menu. Spa Diane Barrière invites you to enjoy a moment of absolute relaxation, with six treatment rooms and a hair salon; a beautiful 15m x 6m (50ft x 20ft) swimming pool, an aqua trail unique in Paris, men and women separate steam rooms, sauna, as well as a 50m2 (540ft2) gym fitted with the latest in cardio workout and muscle toning equipment by Technogym.

Nights 7-8 Gubbio, Italy

Park Hotel ai Cappuccini

Park Hotel ai Cappuccini is a 17th-century monastery which has been cleverly restored. This splendid building and the religious communities that have lived here since it was first built belong to the history of the city of Gubbio, situated in the green heart of Umbria. Its ancient stones and architecture are among the highest testimonies of the luminous and refined Medieval Age. Secluded, yet near to the center of the city, the Park Hotel ai Cappuccini is set in its own magnificent park within walking distance of historic town center; it is a harmonious blend of an antique setting and modern comforts. An affinity towards art, displayed by the owners throughout the years, has allowed them to collect a considerable and very interesting number of works of art, which contribute to the very precious fittings of the hotel structure. View the 15th-century frescoes, Renaissance paintings, Flemish tapestries and furniture, along with modern artistic expressions, sculptures and posters, that enrich its austere conventual architecture. The kitchen has its roots in times gone by, when the passing of time was marked by the rhythm of nature; plates were created with simple, genuine ingredients, fruit of hard daily labor and of the fertile earth. Paying great attention to their choice of local products, and adding a touch of talent and fantasy, the chefs create delicious dishes worthy of any table. Amenities include a pool, spa and wellness center.

Tauck Guests enjoy complimentary Internet access in guest rooms!

Nights 9 – 11 Rome, Italy

Palazzo Naiadi

In the heart of the Eternal City, in Piazza della Repubblica, between the Baths of Diocletian and the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli designed by Michelangelo, stands the 5-star luxury hotel Palazzo Naiadi, The Dedica Anthology, Autograph Collection (formerly Boscolo Exedra Roma). Owing to the astounding restoration and redesigning of a sumptuous late XIX-century palace, Palazzo Naiadi is unmatched: 238 rooms, 2 fabulous restaurants, a superb terrace overlooking Rome, an exclusive well-being center, all suspended above the excavations of the ancient Roman Diocletian Baths complex. A refined and discreet atmosphere envelops guests in luxury… making you feel like a key player in an experience worthy of a novel. Guest rooms are refined and elegant. Inspired by Capitoline hospitality, the Lobby Bar, the Tazio Champagnerie, the Posh Bar & Restaurant, the Gallery Bar & Tazio Restaurant and the La Frusta Breakfast Room reconcile the worlds of art and business with refined and creative dishes that pay homage to the culture of Italian cuisine. Palazzo Naiadi celebrates Roman-ness, with a view over the splendid Piazza della Repubblica or Esedra, as the Romans call it, for its specific semi-circular shape.

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