Great Wintry City Getaways
In Europe's greatest cities the fun doesn't set with the sun...it's just getting started. Cheaper flights, fewer crowds, and cozy, relaxing dinners make off-season city getaways ideal opportunities to recharge your soul — in just a few magical days and nights. But your true reward for traveling in winter is the joy of feeling part of a city, like you almost belong there. Here are some great week-long escapes for this winter!
Best of London in 7 Days: During a winter week in London, you'll spend your days diving into the treasures at the British Museum, marveling at the masterpieces in the National Gallery, exploring the royal rooms of Windsor castle — and your nights at a cozy pub or a world-class play. Save $300 on our December 13th departure with guide Roy Nicholls.
Best of Paris in 7 Days: Paris in winter offers so much to do indoors — first-class museums, award-winning restaurants and the concert and arts season is in full bloom. All that, and it's flat-out filled with joie de vivre to boot. Save $200 on our December 26th departure with guide Elisabeth van Hest.
Best of Rome in 7 Days: The Eternal City of Rome has been created from a multitude of layers into a timeless, magnificent city. In winter, you'll enjoy digging deeper into the the Vatican, private time with the ancient sights, and exploring the medieval quarters — it's la dolce vita without the crowds or heat. Save $200 on our December 13th departure with guide Donato Chmura.
Best of Venice, Florence & Rome in 7 Days: With lighter crowds and quieter streets, enjoying Italy's three greatest cities in winter is a special treat — like having three scoops of gelato instead of just one! Save $300 on our November 20th departure with guide Ben Cameron.
Best of Barcelona & Madrid in 7 Days: Spain's top two cities sparkle anytime of year. But in winter you'll enjoy fewer crowds and mild temperatures — perfect for exploring Barcelona's majestic art and architecture and Madrid's tempting tapas and masterpiece-packed Prado. We have seats available on our November 1st departure with guide Carlos Galvin.
Getting to know London, Paris & Rome...
Traveling during the holidays in Europe, you'll find the season marked not by the number of shopping days left until Christmas, but by a long series of winter festivals... read more
On our week-long London getaway tours, we give you several free evenings to make your own discoveries. And since you'll already be smack-dab in the middle of the world's greatest city for live theater... read more
The City of Light sparkles year-round, but Paris has a special appeal in winter. You'll find inexpensive airfares and few — if any — crowds. Sure, the weather can be cold and rainy (average high in December is a Seattle-like 44°F), but if you dress in layers... read more
Tourists are often content to "experience" the art and culture of Europe in museums and on stage. But a true traveler's goal is to be engulfed in a living culture, to enjoy it in situ... read more
"My favourite 'wow' moment was the afternoon we spent in the British Museum. I actually saw the Rosetta Stone! And the Elgin marbles! I saw Egyptian mummies that were thousands of years old! I met 'Ginger', the Egyptian who had been naturally mummified in the sands of his native country. I saw early British treasure troves of gold and coins as well as Greek and Roman mosaics. I could have spent the whole week pouring over that museum... but then I would have missed the other fabulous sights. Oh well, there's always next time!"
— Carolyne in Cranbrook, BC
"My favorite 'wow' was walking around the Montmartre area. It was so beautiful and quaint, even in the rain! When we went into the Sacré-Coeur, there was a mass going on and there were about 20 nuns singing on the altar. It was beautiful!"
— Kathleen in Glen Rock, NJ
"Rome is magic — from antiquities firing the imagination to coffee granitas (or gelatos, pasta, fresh herbs and vegetables, breads and...) stimulating the taste buds. It is a city for the senses: color, taste, textures, sounds, and smells. It is hard to place a favorite memory, but maybe it's the profusion of purple azaleas and the hundreds of people, locals and tourists, sitting among them on the Spanish Steps, bathed in golden light at day's end, enjoying the evening. Or perhaps it is my awe and wonder as lights suddenly illuminated three dramatic Caravaggio paintings in the corner of the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi."
— Tamara in Wilson, WY
Radio Show Podcasts:
London (Run time: 29:39)
Get an insider's view of London from guide Gillian as she and Rick share pointers on how to get the most out of this crowded, expensive, and amazing city. (Airdate: September 3, 2005)
Paris City Guide (Run time: 45:10)
France guide Patrick joins Rick for an insider's perspective on the style and substance that make Paris a can't-miss cultural capital. (Airdate: April 5, 2008)
Rome (Run time: 47:35)
Italy guides Francesca and Susanna talk to Rick about the high points of Rome and offer tips on how travelers should spend their time in the Eternal City. (Airdate: May 10, 2008)
Need to get away now? See a list of all our remaining 2009 departures with seats available!