• Open-Air Folk Museum, Arnhem, Netherlands
    The Netherlands
  • Rhine Valley and Bacharach, Germany
    Bacharach in the Rhine Valley
  • Rothenburg, Germany
  • Neuschwanstein Castle
  • Gondola ride, Venice, Italy
    Venice
  • Florence
  • Colosseum, Rome, Italy
    Rome
  • Italy's Cinque Terre
  • Swiss Alps
  • Wine tasting, Beaune, France
    Wine Tasting in Beaune, France
  • Paris

Tour Questions? See our FAQ | Call 425-608-4217

Best of Europe in 21 Days Tour

from $5,095 per person + air

Optional Single Supplement $925

See Tour Dates

Our classic, three-week Best of Europe tour packs more travel thrills into a single vacation than you can imagine. Starting in the Netherlands with your Rick Steves guide, you'll experience the best of Amsterdam, Germany's Rhine Valley and Romantic Road, castles and forests of Austria's Tirol, canals of Venice, Renaissance Florence, the art and history of Rome, seaside villages of the Cinque Terre, the majestic Swiss Alps, country charms of France's Burgundy region, and the City of Light — Paris. Join us for the Best of Europe in 21 Days!

Dates & Prices

2018

    • May 27–Jun 16 (Su–Sa)
    • $5,095 + Air

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    • May 29–Jun 18 (Tu–Mo)
    • $5,095 + Air

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    • Jun 3–Jun 23 (Su–Sa)
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    • Jun 10–Jun 30 (Su–Sa)
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    • Jun 17–Jul 7 (Su–Sa)
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    • Jun 19–Jul 9 (Tu–Mo)
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    • Jun 24–Jul 14 (Su–Sa)
    • $5,095 + Air

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    • Jul 8–Jul 28 (Su–Sa)
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    • Jul 22–Aug 11 (Su–Sa)
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    • Sep 2–Sep 22 (Su–Sa)
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    • Sep 9–Sep 29 (Su–Sa)
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    • Sep 16–Oct 6 (Su–Sa)
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    • Sep 23–Oct 13 (Su–Sa)
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What's Included

  • A small, friendly group of 24–28 people — half the size of most tour groups
  • Full-time services of a professional Rick Steves guide and local experts who will make the fascinating history, art, and culture of Europe come alive for you
  • All tours and admissions — at no extra cost — covering at least 36 group sightseeing events • Haarlem walking tour • Amsterdam walking tour • Rijksmuseum • Amsterdam canal cruise • Dutch open-air museum • Rhine cruise • Rheinfels Castle • Bacharach walking tour • Rothenburg Night Watchman tour • Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial • Wieskirche • Neuschwanstein Castle • Mountain luge ride (weather permitting) • Venice walking tour • St. Mark's Square and Basilica • Florence Renaissance walking tour • Florence's Accademia Gallery including Michelangelo's David • Uffizi Gallery • Vatican Museums • Sistine Chapel • Evening walk through Rome including Trevi Fountain • Colosseum • Forum • Pantheon • Italian hill town • Orientation for "vacation" day in Cinque Terre • Hiking orientation in the Swiss Alps • Hôtel Dieu in Beaune • Wine tasting in Burgundy • 2-Day Paris Museum Pass • Paris walking tour • Notre-Dame Cathedral • Sainte-Chapelle • Paris panoramic bus tour • Louvre Museum…and more
  • All group transportation from Haarlem to Paris
  • 20 nights' accommodations in memorable, centrally located hotels
  • All breakfasts and half your dinners
  • All tips for guides and driver
  • Rick Steves Travel Store credit to use toward guidebooks for your trip
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2018
  • 50% discount on a consulting appointment with our in-house experts to assist with your pre- or post-tour travel plans
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer, or cancel/interrupt your tour

Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions for important details regarding everything listed above.

Itinerary

Daily Activity Key
  • Light = 2–4 miles of mostly level walking throughout the day.
  • Moderate = 2–6 miles walking throughout the day with some hills and stairs.
  • Strenuous = 2–8 miles of walking throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain.

Day 1: Welcome to the Netherlands

We'll start in quintessentially Dutch Haarlem, a quick 30 minutes by train, bus, or taxi from the Amsterdam airport. We'll meet at our hotel at 3 p.m. for an orientation and chance to get acquainted, followed by a walking tour of this charming town and a traditional rijsttafel dinner together. Sleep in Haarlem (2 nights). No bus. Walking: light.

Day 2: Progressive, Artistic Amsterdam

We'll hop aboard the train into Amsterdam this morning, and get an introduction to this progressive, artistic city on an informative walking tour of Amsterdam's historic streets, lined with teetering, gable-topped houses overlooking centuries-old canals. We'll continue our tour, cruising the canals on a relaxing canal boat before breaking for lunch on your own. This afternoon we'll tour the remarkable Rijksmuseum, featuring masterpieces by Rembrandt and Vermeer. Afterward, you'll have free time to visit the nearby Van Gogh Museum, the Anne Frank House, or whatever strikes your fancy. We'll regroup before returning to Haarlem for dinner on your own. Train: 1 hour. Boat: 1 hour. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 3: Dutch Treats and Rhine Views

We'll travel to Arnhem's open-air museum this morning to see what life was like in this corner of Europe centuries ago. We'll wander among the quaint houses, village storefronts, and working windmills, followed by a traditional Dutch pancake lunch. Then we'll work our way down to Germany's castle-studded Rhineland, enjoying dinner together at our half-timbered hotel, nestled in the medieval village of Bacharach on the Rhine (2 nights). Bus: 6 hours. Walking: light.

Day 4: Rhine Castles and a River Cruise

This morning we'll take a walking tour of the village of Bacharach with an entertaining local guide. At nearby St. Goar we'll hike up the hill to tour the mighty medieval Rheinfels Castle, and enjoy its commanding view of the Rhine Valley. We'll then board a boat for a relaxing Rhine River cruise, passing picturesque villages and feudal castles, followed by free time for dinner on your own. Boat: 1 hour. Bus: ½ hour. Walking: strenuous.

Day 5: Medieval Rothenburg

We'll get an early start today, arriving in Rothenburg, Germany's best preserved medieval town, just before lunchtime. After a helpful orientation tour, the afternoon is yours to see the best woodcarving in Germany (Riemenschneider's altarpiece), walk the medieval wall, tour the Crime and Punishment Museum, or hunt down the best apple strudel in town. This evening we'll tag along on the legendary Night Watchman's tour. Sleep in Rothenburg (1 night). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: light to strenuous (your choice).

Day 6: Dachau and Austria's Tirol

Today we'll make a 21st-century pilgrimage to the Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial near Munich, where we'll learn powerful lessons about the Holocaust and World War II. We'll then drive across the Bavarian countryside to visit Germany's greatest Rococo-style church, the Wieskirche. Winding our way toward Austria, we'll arrive at our rural Tirolean guest house in time for a traditional dinner. Sleep near Reutte (2 nights). Bus: 6 hours. Walking: light.

Day 7: Neuschwanstein and a Luge

It's a short drive and a half-hour hike to "Mad" King Ludwig's deservedly famous Neuschwanstein Castle. We'll tour the castle and have time for lunch. Afterward you'll barrel down the Tegelberg summer luge track (weather permitting). This afternoon you'll be free to visit another nearby castle, take a stroll in the woods or just relax at our peaceful hotel before dinner on your own. Bus: 1 hour. Walking: strenuous.

Day 8: Italy's Incomparable Venice

We'll take a scenic, all-day drive to Venice today, stopping en route for lunch together in a characteristic Italian-Tirolean village. In Venice we'll park our bus and board a vaporetto boat for a Grand Canal ride to our hotel in the historic heart of this seductive city. Tonight we'll take an alleys-and-canals orientation stroll to our first Italian dinner together. Afterward your guide will organize an optional gondola ride for this unique Venetian experience. If the moon is out, it will hit your eye like a big pizza pie. Sleep in Venice (2 nights). Boat: ½ hour. Bus: 7 hours. Walking: light.

Day 9: The Art of Wandering in Venice

This morning our local guide will take us on a winding walking tour through Venice, blending historic and modern-day stories of this one-of-a-kind treasure, and giving us a local's perspective on Venice's fascinating past…and its uncertain future. We'll finish our morning walk in St. Mark's Square, and the mosaic and marble-filled, St. Mark's Basilica. The rest of your day is free to visit the Doge's Palace or the Titian- and Tintoretto-packed Accademia art gallery. Better yet, get lost (remember, it's an island) exploring the alleys, cruising the canals, and "crawling" the pubs. No bus (too much water). Walking: moderate.

Day 10: Florence and Michelangelo's David

An early-morning vaporetto ride will reunite us with our bus and driver. We'll drive straight to Florence and hit the ground walking with a Renaissance tour of the city's historic center. We'll see and learn about Brunelleschi's magnificent cathedral dome, Ghiberti's Baptistery doors, and other creations that helped define this world-changing era. We'll end our walk at the Accademia Gallery to marvel at works of sculptural genius: Michelangelo's rough-hewn Prisoners and his greatest masterpiece, David. We'll have dinner together tonight, and sleep in Florence (2 nights). Boat: ½ hour. Bus: 4 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 11: Wonders of Renaissance Florence

This morning is on your own. You can sleep in — or get an early start and scramble to the top of Brunelleschi's dome, or browse through Florence's colorful food and craft markets. After lunch, we'll tour the wealth of Botticellis, Leonardos, and Raphaels in the greatest collection of Italian paintings anywhere — the Uffizi Gallery. This evening is free to make your own discoveries. No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 12: St. Peter's and the Vatican Museums

This morning we'll drive straight to the heart of Rome. After a quick lunch and transportation lesson, we'll focus on Renaissance (Catholic) Rome at the sprawling Vatican Museums. We'll visit what seems like a limitless collection of treasures as you make your way to one of the world's most famous works of art: Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel. We'll then introduce you to the greatest church in Christendom, the awe-inspiring St. Peter's Basilica, home to Michelangelo's sublime Pietà. Tonight we'll celebrate la dolce vita Roman-style, with an after-dinner stroll through the floodlit heart of the city, lacing together the lively campos, classy piazzas, and the splashy Trevi Fountain. Sleep in Rome (2 nights). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: strenuous.

Day 13: A Walk Through Caesar's Rome

Today we'll uncover Ancient Rome as a local guide takes us through the monumental Colosseum, history-drenched Roman Forum, and the awe-inspiring Pantheon. You'll have the rest of your day free to explore more of the Eternal City on your own (don't forget to taste some refreshing gelato along the way). No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 14: To Italy's Cinque Terre

We'll drive along Italy's western coast today, with a refreshing stop at one of Italy's enchanting hill towns. This afternoon's destination is Italy's dramatic Cinque Terre: five perfectly preserved fishing villages, laced together with hiking paths that meander between vineyards and the deep blue sea. As we approach the Cinque Terre, we'll park our bus and take a short train ride into seaside Monterosso al Mare, where we'll sleep (2 nights). Train: ¼ hour. Bus: 6 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 15: Free Day in the Cinque Terre

Ahh, it's time to take a "vacation from your vacation" today in our Mediterranean getaway. Pick a Cinque Terre village and spend your day exploring the stairways and alleyways, sunning yourself on the rocks, or sipping a cappuccino and catching up on your journal at an outdoor café. Or, if you're looking for lots of exercise, fresh air, and panoramic views, start your day early and hike the cliffside paths that connect the towns. No bus. Walking: light to strenuous (your choice).

Day 16: To the Heart of the Swiss Alps

Today we'll catch an early train back to our bus and head over the hills, past the farms and along the pristine lakes of northern Italy, and into the Alpine wonderland of Switzerland. After a breathtaking drive into the very heart of the Swiss Alps, we'll arrive at our creaky chalet in the magnificent Lauterbrunnen Valley, where we'll have dinner and sleep (2 nights). Train: ¼ hour. Bus: 7 hours. Walking: light.

Day 17: Free Day in the Alps

The day is all yours to enjoy some of Europe's most dramatic scenery. You may want to join your guide for an optional mountain excursion that combines the local narrow-gauge railway, a gondola lift, and a spectacular Alpine walk above the tree line, surrounded by a panorama of cut-glass peaks…or ride a gondola lift up to the Schilthorn at 10,000 feet, loiter in the thin air, and hike down…or wander through the valley and walk to the thundering Trümmelbach: a unique set of waterfalls encased behind the valley walls. No bus. Walking: light to strenuous (your choice).

Day 18: A Hearty Taste of Burgundy

Today we'll say auf Wiedersehen to the Alps and bonjour to la belle France. We'll drive into profoundly French Burgundy for a look at small-town France. We'll have an orientation walk through the heart of Burgundy's inviting wine capital, Beaune, visit the famous Hôtel Dieu medieval hospital, then enjoy a wine tasting together. Sleep in Beaune (1 night). Bus: 5 hours. Walking: light.

Day 19: Historic and Neighborhood Paris

This morning we'll drive straight to Paris, where you'll have an orientation of the neighborhood markets and cafés to find lunch on your own. After checking into our nearby hotel, we'll have a transportation lesson and Métro ride to the historic heart of Paris: the Ile de la Cité. Prepare to be awed by the brilliant stained glass windows of Sainte-Chapelle, and enlightened on a historic walk through the Latin Quarter, ending at the stunning Notre-Dame Cathedral. Your evening is free for dinner and more discoveries. Sleep in Paris (2 nights). Bus: 6 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 20: Parisian Cityscapes and Masterpieces

This day provides a busy, star-studded finale for our tour. We'll start the day with a private panoramic bus tour through the city. After our rolling orientation to the City of Light, your guide will orient you and set you free to explore Europe's greatest museum — the Louvre — where you'll come face-to-face with timeless treasures that include Mona Lisa, Winged Victory, Venus de Milo, and hundreds more. You may wish to round out your Paris sightseeing with a visit to such legendary museums as the Orsay and Rodin, or perhaps a walk down the Champs-Elysées — armed with your included Paris Museum Pass, the choices are endless. This evening we'll have our final dinner together, sharing memories and toasting our newly made friends. Salut! No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 21: Tour Over After Breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. If you're staying on in Paris, today would be a great day to hop on the train and tackle the sprawling palace and grounds at Versailles. If you're headed home, it's a breeze to reach Paris' airports by taxi, shuttle, or public transportation. Au revoir!

(This tour does not include the Eiffel Tower. To avoid its long lines, we recommend booking tickets several weeks in advance. For details, see our Eiffel Tower ticket tips for tour members.)

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Physical Demands

Our tours are physically active! It's an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our Best of Europe in 21 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (possibly several blocks) and up stairways to reach your hotel, then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Be on your feet, walking and standing, for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions.
  3. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  4. After orientation and transportation lessons, be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.
  5. Be content with the possibility of sharing bathroom facilities at one hotel during this tour.

Reviews

Loretta

Pleasant Hill, CA

Tour: 04/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fabulous! We felt very well taken care of at each point. Jesse was superb, energetic, knowledgeable, understanding and developed the group dynamics beautifully! The sights were A+ as were the local guides. Restaurants were very well selected. Time schedules kept me moving but also allowed some downtime for needed sleep. I could go on for days about how grand this trip was. Derrick the bus driver was a real expert under tough circumstances. Hotels were nice, small and gave us local color.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had 21 days of near constant "WOW!" Each day the expedition and sightseeing took our hearts away. We are both historians by training and could not drink in all the information and beauty we were seeing."

Karen

Logan, UT

Tour: 04/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour is very rigorous and exciting; I think Jesse Blackwood is the best tour guide I've had with RS and I think I have had some great ones to date as this is my fourth tour!! He is very engaging, knowledgeable, helpful and hard working. He provided a great deal of historical perspective and information current to today; excellent! I do think this tour could be even better if we were given 3days in Rome and Paris rather than 2. Having a day off in Cinque Terre was very helpful too.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too hard to choose just one but the Swiss alps are stunning! Also time in Rome and Paris but I thought Amsterdam was excellent too."

Cindy

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 04/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My tour was absolutely wonderful! I wouldn't change a thing! I was very pleased with our guide, our bus driver, the weather and the extra fun little things added on to the regular itinerary.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I couldn't possibly pick a favorite as there were several! The beauty of the Austrian countryside, Bavaria and Switzerland were stand outs for me, however. St. Peter's Basilica was one of the most amazing man-made structures I have ever set foot in."

Laura

Maitland, FL

Tour: 04/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a life changing trip. I accomplished everything that I wanted to do and more. I did things that I would never have chosen to do on my own. I am thankful for those experiences now. I understand that relationships formed are a huge part of why this tour is a success. People are what is important in this life and understanding their culture or world view adds value to any experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the tulips at Keukenhof was huge! But as an artist, I learned through guides, that Rothenburg was saved by a painting during WWII and Bacharach was able to recreate their town's well from an old painting. This helped me to see more value in my talent."

Deborah

Fairfield, CA

Tour: 04/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved this tour! I came on this trip with the expectation that I was going to visit six countries and get a taste of each one. I wanted to experience the culture, the food, learn the history and just soak it all in. I was not disappointed in the least. The itinerary was full with a few extra gems added in. It was strenuous as described but I prepared for the miles of walking & climbing stairs. I can't wait to go back to revisit some of my favorites & explore more of Europe. Highly Recommend

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had a "wow" moment everywhere we went across Europe. One of my standouts was Sainte-Chapelle in Paris. Walking up the spiral staircase, stepping into the Chapelle Haute, immediately being surrounded with color and a warm feeling of serenity from the beautiful stained glass panels being illuminated by the sun. It took my breath away."

James

Plano, TX

Tour: 04/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second Rick Steves' tour and it was exactly what I expected and more. We have watched Rick's PBS show since the start and have come to understand his philosophy of travel and guiding and he has hired and trained his tour guides and drivers to be the best. The places and activities chosen for the tour are fantastic fun while being very educational, but our guide had the ability to turn the group into a family which helped make the trip wonderful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The size of St. Peter's Basilica."

David

Hyde Park, NY

Tour: 04/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

All aspects of our tour were above expectations. The information provided by the Rick Steves website before our trip was accurate and helpful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moment for me was the valley of 72 waterfalls. Entertainment was fun and food was excellent."

Wendy

Hyde Park, NY

Tour: 04/15/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Never expected half of the wonderful experiences we had! Fabulous tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I "wowed" every single day, sometimes more than once a day! Everything was WOW!"

Kay

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great and so was Dimitri! I learned so much and enjoyed every country we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is hard to say because each place was interesting and full of history. I enjoyed Cinque Terre and Switzerland for the beauty and simplicity."

Stephen

Reisterstown, MD

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Almost everything was excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Musee D'Orsay in Paris."

Denise

Poway, CA

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was all I expected and more. Everything was planned well. The tour guide, Demitri, was wonderful, engaging and knowledgeable. He was caring and focused on the group. The places we visited were great. The amenities were exceptional, and the food, what can I say. All that was promised was delivered with some pleasant surprises. Loved every minute.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the David in Florence. The Swiss Alps."

Loren

Boise, ID

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My overall opinion of tour is that it exceeded my expectations. I really appreciate getting more than I pay for and will continue to use Rick Steve's for as long as it allows me to do so. The guide had impeccable integrity and I was not allowed to worry about anything during the entire trip. I do not force myself on anyone during tours and do not mind helping when I can as long as there is no objections from other tour members. I had time of my life and did not want to return.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Guide made an extra stop in Orvieto. I have had Orvieto on my visit list forever. It was an extra I really appreciated. We had the right amount of time to walk the city and have lunch. I would have paid a $500 more for a day trip to Orvieto and really appreciated the stop."

Carl

Sacramento, CA

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was absolutely outstanding. Dimitri not only did an excellent job as a guide, but he repeatedly gave extra help to tour members (pharmacy visits, etc.) We could tell that the tour locations had been chosen carefully and enjoyed them all. The hotels and rooms were better than we expected. The bus was comfortable and our driver Matt did an awesome job. The additions we made (Munich, going through the pass in Switzerland) made the tour even better! The local guides were *great.*

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's tough to pick just one, so I'll pick a few: The map room with the amazing ceiling in the Vatican Museum, fall color in Switzerland and seeing Neuschwanstein Castle from the nearby bridge."

BreeAnn

Snohomish, WA

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I can't say enough great things about this tour as it was a trip of the lifetime taking us throughout 6 countries and getting in the heart of the cities/towns and the highlights of each. Traveling alone for the first time was a fantastic experience as I was never alone as our tour group connected really well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to have a favorite as each location we went to was a highlight and somewhere that had been on my must do travel list. My favorite places were the small towns we stayed in as well as Burano, Italy; Venice and the Colosseum in Rome."

Arlen

Santa Rosa, CA

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the tour. I knew that this would be a somewhat strenous and generally active tour, but I knew that coming in. I thought Dimitri, our tour guide provided us with lots of background information and insight that helped us enjoy the places we visited. He was very personable and helpful in seeking ways for us to enjoy our tour. Our local tour guides also contributed to our tour enjoyment. Our driver, Matt was exceptional!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to indicate a favorite wow moment as each place we visited provided it's own moment of amazement. I really enjoyed the Alps. Just stunning vistas! I loved Venice and Rome and Paris was so fun. I enjoyed the hotels we stayed in and the food we ate for group dinners. All contributed to a lasting set of memories of Europe."

Walter

Fort Myers, FL

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Dmetri was excellent. Appreciated his historical perspective on the areas we were travelling to/through. Matt, the bus driver, was also excellent navigating insane traffic that we encountered. Enjoyed the itinerary with its mix of intense urban immersion and then the more bucolic small town, historical visits for short respites.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lauterbrunnen valley in Switzerland--beautiful area, weather and amazing vistas."

Richard

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My experience was outstanding. The guide was excellent and everything worked like clockwork. The group we were with was excellent and we got along very well. Dimitri, our guide, was able to put a personal touch on the experience of Europe which I appreciated very much. The hotels were adequate and put us in locations that were close to many of the famous sites that we went on to see. I would definitely go on a Rick Steve's tour again. Rich Eltrich

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many firsts and wow moments it is hard to pick. Here are a few, Venice, Florence ,Rome and Paris. Wow moment, the Louve and Shilthorn in Switzerland"

Tania

Bellbird Park, QLD

Tour: 10/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour exceeded all of my expectations. It was a fantastic way to get a taste of Europe; large cities and small villages. it showed me how I could do Europe on my own as I learnt so much from Dimitri (our tour guide) from using public transport to ordering food in a restaurant. Having the small group (28 of us) was a great number due to being able to have our own seats on the bus, it felt like an extended family as we all looked out for one another.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's very difficult to pick one place. For me the snow capped mountains in Switzerland another was our hike from Austria over the Germany border to visit Neuschwanstein Castle was a huge wow. Every place we went and toured were just absolutely amazing. Loved it all as each country had a wow moment."

Angela

San Carlos, CA

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fabulous - overall it met all our expectation. It is a tour de Europe whirlwind adventure. I don't think we realized it would be up at 0600 daily and out the door by 0730-0800 to cover the miles you needed to to make appointments and allow time for each country. Jennifer (JG) was a great, knowledgeable guide overall however we have some comments below. The tour checked all the boxes we wanted to check in the tour and the bonus events that were not planned made the trip. <3

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Honestly, there was not one "WOW" moment that stood out. We had never been to Europe, so there were many jaw [INVALID]ping sites, amazing history and gorgeous views. At times it was all very overwhelming seeing so much in so little time. Although we understand that the crowds were lighter than peak, the other tourists personal space requirements were far different from ours. It took away from places you tried to stop and take all in."

James

Overland Park, KS

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A great trip. We were able to hit the highlights on many of the premium locations in Europe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Alps in Switzerland."

Bonnie

Woodland Hills, CA

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was my first time in Europe and it could not have been a better experience

Favorite "WOW" moment

"People have asked me that, and I can only answer with I was in awe the whole time, Everything was new for me"

Elizabeth

Hixson, TN

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

From beginning to end an excellent tour. Jennifer was an outstanding person for this profession. We were given information on what to expect, and so we were prepared for everything from 70 euros for WC to language tips to how to cross the streets in Italy!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to rate. Every adventure got better! Loved the Schilthorn's majestic beauty to Eiffel tower lit up to Cinque Terre walk from Monte Rosso to Vernazzza. That was hard but so worth it."

Larry

Littleton, CO

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Summarizing our 21 Day European Rick Steves tour, my wife and I agree we got our money's worth...and more! What we saw and did was more inclusive and extensive than most or all other tours we investigated. But what made this trip so valuable was our tour guide, Jennifer. Her vast knowledge of history combined with her culinary background made this far more than a museum or event- focused tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our two days in Lauterbrunnen and the 4-stage gondola ride to the top of the Alps at the Schilthorn viewing the majesty and beauty of God's creation. Then hiking part-way down and enjoying an Alphorn demonstration before dinner....with everyone getting a chance to participate! A memory we shall always remember!"

John

Hixson, TN

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour met or exceeded all of my expectations. A taste of Europe; large cities and small villages. It will make it easy for me to decide where to go and what areas to avoid based on my personal preferences. It showed me how I could do Europe on my own via the back door, but it also demonstrated to me that a small group, like the 28 in this tour (ages 30 to 74), was a great way to travel. There was always someone ready to take on an activity during our free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Way to many "wow" moments to discuss. Cinque Terre Italy was a favorite, but the Swiss Alps were also a "wow" moment."

Tom

Malvern, OH

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Realizing this was a taste of Europe, I was pleased with what we experienced. I've been to Ireland and the British Isles four times but this was my first trip to mainland Europe. Our traveling companions were great. We established several friendships that we look forward to continuing in the U.S. The efforts of our guide, Jennifer, were beyond compare.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Switzerland wet my appetite for another trip to the Alpine nation. I loved Haalem and the Dutch people. We have much to learn from them. In Italy, the hill town and Cinque Terra were absolute gems."

Rachel

Oceanside, CA

Tour: 09/24/17

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

I was mostly happy with the itinerary, (Bacharach should be removed.) I was beyond disappointed in the hotels that were selected. My guide was well-informed and worked hard to make sure that the trip stayed on track. Our bus driver Ronny was a wonderful asset. If I had to give the tour a letter grade, I would take off an entire point for the hotels, ½ off for the lack of Wi-Fi on the bus, and another ½ off for the guide. That brings this tour all the way down to a "C."

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every time I saw a big sight in Europe it was a "wow" moment. I loved all the places we visited. The Rhine river in Germany is beautiful but Bacharach is a waste of time."

Cyndy

Bowmanville, ON

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

WOW! I think that describes my tour experience,. Once again Rick Steves tour wowed me. Loved it all.. the guide, the driver, the tour, the places we went, the activity level... awesome... Keep up the good work!!

Robert

Frankston, TX

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Best of Europe was exactly that, we were able to touch many different countries and experience many different cultures.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We were able to pay our tribute to the Crown of Thorns at Notre Dame."

James

Uniontown, OH

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide Lisa was fun and knowledgeable and knew the trip details and secrets to insure we had a trip our a lifetime and knew what we could do extra... Richard our bus driver also made the trip fun and guided us like his family.. We would go again tomorrow. This was my first Rick Steves' tour and it met all my expectations and more ( we already signed up for a RS tour to Greece in the spring . I would highly recommend a Steve's tour...

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many , but doing so many new things for the first time WOW ...Subway in Rome WOW, Subway in Paris WOW... the food WOW...Paris sites WOW The beauty of Swiss Alps WOW...the Rhine river valley and all the castle's, I had no idea there were so many castle's in Europe...."

Laurene

Lower Hutt,

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an amazing experience for us. We weren't experienced travellers, had never been to Europe before and got the 'taster' we were looking for. The walking wasn't as 'strenuous' as we thought it would be and there was the right balance of sight-seeing, time on own, dinners together and on own. The max group size and big bus was a big drawcard we knew about earlier before booking. Also happy to have a guide hand-hold us at the right level and make us feel comfortable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the whole tour. It had lots of "wow" moments from art to architecture. My favourite "wow" moment was turning around the corner, looking down and seeing the Roman Forum, i.e. ruins right before my eyes. I literally gasped! Such amazing history and architecture in a picture."

Patricia

North Bend, WA

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful journey to amazing countries with a great Tour leader and guide. It was my first trip to Europe, and this was a great introduction to the cultures and history of several countries. I was totally in awe of what we saw and could not have planned a journey like this on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several wow moments, but for me standing in Ancient Rome and looking at the ruins of the Colosseum. To see so much history still preserved and around every corner of Rome was awe inspiring!"

Janet

Berlin, NJ

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was definitely THE tour of our lifetime. Our tour guide Lisa was so knowledgeable, articulate and helpful, she made our 21 day vacation so enjoyable. Our transportation and money/tipping concerns were alleviated as Lisa helped us explore the best of Europe. Some down time on our beautiful new bus with our excellent and safe driver Richard were filled with a little historical perspective of the city along with a little language lessons. So much fun the entire trip!!!! Rick Steves' the BEST!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's very difficult to pick one place. For me walking into the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica was an emotional WOW for me! The snow capped mountains in Switzerland ..another WOW. Something that surprised myself was that I am not a big art fan but seeing up close and personal these world renowned works of art was amazing. Standing in front of Da Vinci, Monet, Michaelangelo's art was a real WOW "I am here" moment. Every place we went and toured were just absolutely amazing."

Kenneth

Berlin, NJ

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had very high expectations because I have read all RS material and everyone was surpassed on this trip. Food including breakfasts was well beyond anything I had hoped for-no corners cut here. Having a beautiful bus with extra seating and a very professional, friendly, and helpful driver (Richard) made the trip very enjoyable. Choice of cities & local tour guides were great, but the highlight was Lisa with her experience, warmth & humor- she taught us so much. Planning made trip excelle

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Just going thru 8,000 pix I took - Would have to chose among 20 wow moments - even things I wasn't interested in (art, some of the cities) were made wow moments due to Lisa and every single local guide we had - I am now interested in art. Even dinners were wow moments due to Lisa, Richard and the extras. There was a wow scenic moment every day even on something as mundane as the bus ride."

Nancy

Uniontown, OH

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every day was an adventure and the experiences were all enhanced by sharing them with our wonderful tour group of new friends. The tour was well designed with a great balance between the organized activities and free time. Every location left us wanting to come back to see more. As a matter of fact, we booked our next Rick Steve's tour within a week of returning home.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's impossible to choose one because I know I said "wow" repeatedly every day. Some highlights were walking onto the balcony overlooking the Roman Forum, climbing through castle ruins in Germany, looking out over Paris under a full moon from the top of the Eiffel Tower, every view of the Swiss Alps, and the artwork everywhere. My favorite guilty pleasure was having our laundry done in Cinque Terre."

James

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was overall a great experience. Lisa was fantastic. She gave us great overview of each place we visited on the tour. Its history, culture and customs. She was personable and took very good care of us. The local tour guides were great and very insightful of history and culture of the area. The accommodations and food was great. Plus, Richard the bus driver, was very professional and personable. His pride and care of us and his bus was unbelievable. I give a five star rating to the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think the whole tour was wow moment. I just learned so much about the places, people,history and culture we toured. It was just a great adventure."

Betty

Punta Gorda, FL

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were impressed with the Best of Europe tour. We loved having everything managed for us. We learnt so much! The tour guides provided huge value in terms of information, history, language and troubleshooting! Kudos to Lisa (our guide) and Richard (our driver) and also the local guides who were awesome!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many wow moments ...from being in places with long history like Venice, the Roman Colosseum, Florence, Rhine Valley towns, to the incredible scenery in the Alps, Rhine Valley, and Cinque Terre. And then, the fun events like the luge, Munich Oktoberfest and special dinners. One of the standout experiences for me was an impromptu Roman lunch at a guide-recommended small restaurant where we really got a taste of the culture with local people."

Galen

Topeka, KS

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This is a whirl-wind tour of Europe. It provided exposure to the wide range of culture in different countries and a "taste" of art in various countries and periods. The use of local guides in different cities we visited added to the experience and provided a "local flavor" to the experience. The downside is it's a whirl-wind tour and we could probably have spent 45 days and still wanted more time to experience Europe. The tour members were an interesting and fun blend of people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't limit it to just one moment. My biggest "Wow's" were the Addademia Gallery in Florence and Michelangelo's David, the Uffizi Gallery, the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, the Alps (when the clouds finally went away) and the Louvre."

Darren

Lower Hutt,

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great. A good mix of scheduled activity and free time. The locations for the accommodation was great. The bus great. Lisa, our guide was great. Richard our bus driver was great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Cinque Terre. I wish that we had more time."

Ruth

Thornton, CO

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I have dreamed all my life of a trip to Europe. To make my dream come true, I worked an extra year before I retired to save for this trip. This tour MET all my dreams, expectations and more! The tour guides of this fantastic trip deepened the experience by giving the historical background of nearly every sight. I was so impressed by Lisa & the local guides who lived in the town/city, who all shared their passion for each cultural experience with detailed stories, advice & laughter.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Truly this tour was one continuous "wow" moment after another. The time flew with laughter and beautiful landscapes! Our experience exceeded our wildest expectations by far."

Amanda

Chicago, IL

Tour: 09/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The RS Best of Europe Tour was outstanding and I highly recommend it to other travelers. I joined the tour as a single/solo female traveler and was initially a bit nervous about heading oversees and joining a group of strangers for 3 weeks. I couldn't have been more impressed with the pre-trip communication from the RS travel department, the itinerary, the tour guides, the fellow tour members and the places we visited. Everything from beginning to end was executed flawlessly!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is very difficult to choose just one 'wow' moment, since the entire trip was a 'wow' moment! If I had to choose one moment that I will remember the rest of my life, it was toasting champagne with my fellow tour members in front of the Eiffel Tower on our last night of the tour."

Mark

Lakeland, MN

Tour: 09/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Matt and Evelyn are such friendly and helpful people. A real joy to be around. Had a wonderful time with all our fellow tour members. Some, I now consider friends that I will stay in touch with. Bus broke down two times within two days which cut into some of our local tour events, but Matt and Evelyn handled it as best as anyone could have. The local guides were fantastic and made the trip for me. Food was generally pretty good. Accommodations were quite good and located perfectly.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Oktoberfest in Munich (an unanticipated stop) what fun!! Met a German family there sat at their table Google translate communications - what a blast. Schilthorn - it was actually clear - Sun Dogs - Mount Blanc in the distance. Amazing. Alpine hike beautiful! Coliseum in Rome - I though I was going to dislike Rome, but the local guide Marta gave us a tour of ancient Rome and it changed my mind about Rome."

Tracey

Pewaukee, WI

Tour: 09/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was fantastic! After each destination stop,I thought "it cant get any better" BUT IT DID! This tour appealed to not only those who like to travel, but art and history buffs! I loved the historical lessons Matt provided and think that I am well prepared for any JEOPARDY tournament that might come my way! I loved the different places we travelled , from bustling Amsterdam and Rome to the gorgeous coast of Cinque Terra and the rugged mountains of Switzerland. This trip will appeal to all

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Well , I had several WOW moments, but our gondola ride down the canals of Venice was very memorable! I also loved the natural beauty of the Cinque Terra. I would have loved another day there to relax after my 13 mile hike! Switzerland and its sheer rugged mountains and the soothing tinkling of cow bells in the background was also a highlight."

Ed

Laguna Niguel, CA

Tour: 09/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

You provided an outstanding tour with just the right amount of pre-planned structure as well as the freedom to discover things on our own. Your guides were terrific and the people on tour with us were delightful without exception. The size of our group was just right. When we did hit a brief unavoidable snag your on-sight staff and your home office resolved it quickly and got us on our way again. Thank you so much for helping us make the memory of a lifetime!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Viewing Michelangelo's David, the Mona Lisa and the Colosseum in person. Pictures do not do these marvels justice."

Ray

Rochester, MN

Tour: 09/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great overview of important culture and art of western Europe. It would have taken me years to do what was accomplished in just 21 days. It's unfortunate I became ill about 10 days into the trip, but the schedule allowed me to convalesce and make it to the end. Would I do another tour like this again at my age, probably not. I need a slower pace these days.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Switzerland was a competitive 'wow' moment, but not in value to the fine guided tours provided; beholding the statue of David in Florence was particularly impressive. Another moment of complete amazement was after our last dinner in Paris, i strolled away from our group and saw the Eiffel tower all lit up and shrouded in the evening fog."

Joseph

Rochester, MN

Tour: 09/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We saw more in 21 days than I could ever see on my own in that amount of time and for the amount of money I spent. Each new hotel was a unique experience; the breakfasts with our tour members were very nice and a highlight of each day. The tours of each city were great; I would have been lost on my own. I even enjoyed the bus ride - very relaxing as I watched the beautiful countryside go by. I now know Europe much, much better.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think Switzerland was the most beautiful part of the trip. The Swiss cows with their bells clanging, blocking the road at times, was wonderful. The mountains, green valleys and peaceful atmosphere was about the best part of my trip. The museums in Florence were unbelievable with the most beautiful statuary and paintings I could imagine. Paris was great - I will definitely be going back here to visit on my own in the future."

Carter

Orlando, FL

Tour: 09/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My tour experience absolutely met and exceeded my expectations.The tour guides, Matt and Evelyn,took assiduous care of us all with patience and good humor. I enjoyed all the places we visited and all of the accommodations,but our hotel in Bacharach was a bit rustic. The meals together were good bonding times, and except for Bacharach, very good. Breaded salmon? You Germans! Everyone loved our driver and the bus was a wonderful way to see the scenery. More laundry stops please!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Climbing the hills of Cinque Terre and coming down into the old town."

Dianne

Vestavia, AL

Tour: 09/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was our 6th RS tour. Great seeing some countries for the first time and loved revisiting ones we had wanted to return to. We had followed Rick's book to do Italy our first time to Europe. The tour proved you can do it yourself, although having local guides add so much to the experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The bus driver suggested a very scenic route into the Swiss town we were to stay. This was one of the most surprising moments on the tour, personally experiencing this was unbelievable. Hiking in the Alps on a perfect day was great."

Jeanne

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We are very pleased about the quality and value of the Europe 21 day tour. We received more than what was listed! Ragen was constantly surprising us with extras. We would not hesitate to recommend your tours to anyone. Just getting into museums etc. and not waiting in the long lines was a great value. The local guides gave us info that we wouldn't get on our own. Of course, the bus and the local transportation lessons made getting around without hassles possible and headache free.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me, it was the hike in the Alps in Switzerland. I love to hike and was disappointed that the Chinque Terre was closed. The surrounding mountains were so beautiful, I felt that I was in The Sound of Music."

Nancy

Roswell, GA

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wow...I am blown away how wonderful the experience of traveling on a Rick Steves was! Our guide, Ragan, was 5 stars plus some! All the locations were exactly what I would have chosen had I done a European tour on my own. I have been to Europe 4 or 5 times prior to this trip and was concerned that I would be repeating some sites. However, it was not a problem but an enhancement of the whole trip. The onsite guides were full of knowledge! I'd be first in line to do another RS trip! Thanks!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wish I could limit the '"wow" moments but there were too many to mention. Maybe Cinque Terra? I had been there before a few times but it always "takes my breath away"! OH.....and the Alps!!!"

John

Bend, OR

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Really fun, well organized, delightful guide,driver, people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"1. La Salada Restaurant in Florence. They kept bringing us plate after plate of food, and bottles and bottles of wine. It was just a roman food orgy. 2. The Paris subway. I was in Paris with my 90 year old mother years ago and she refused to take the subway, so I had to walk everywhere, saw little, and was exhausted and didn't look forward to coming back. We went everywhere we wanted this time, burned thru 20 tickets each in three days, and just wound up riding around on the subway for fun."

Carolyn

Gillette, WY

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Having taken the Week in Paris Tour in 2016, I already had high expectations for this Best of Europe in 21 Days Tour. Not once, was I disappointed. Daily, even hourly sometimes, I was amazed and delighted by the experiences I had on this tour. It was educational, enlightening, fulfilling, and immensely fun! I know the purpose of the scope and pace of the tour was to give an overview of the variety of Europe's attractions, but I always felt I wanted to stay longer and see and do and more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I cannot limit my "wow' moments to just one. A few of my favorite things were: the distinctive architecture of buildings, boxes of flowers around windows, green fields and grazing animals, hilltop castles, precarious vineyards, ancient city walls, art in situ with the sculpture, paintings, buildings that sprang to life, breathtaking seaside and mountain vistas, new and delicious tastes of foods and drinks, and all encompassing were the warm relationships that grew with our tour members."

Ken

El Dorado Hills, CA

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour far exceeded my expectations. The Rick Steves' tour guide, the amazing sites the museum and city walk guides, the hotels, the food and the bus were all simply outstanding. This tour was an exceptional value because we saw way more than we ever would have going to these countries on our own. The best sights to see at the best possible time were selected for us, all we had to do is show up on time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many "wow" moments it is hard to pick just one. Here are a few of my favorites; seeing the Eiffel Tower at night (from a tour boat) with all its shimmering lights illuminated. Going on a night walking tour in Florence and coming across a 5 piece orchestra playing in the exquisite acoustics of the surrounding buildings; a quiet morning tour in Venice before the "barbarian's" (cruise ship visitors) show up."

Julie

Twain Harte, CA

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded my expectations. The group of fellow travelers were fabulous, not a single grump in the bunch. Even the dreary rain & unseasonable cold weather didn't dampen our fun. The group meals were all delicious & the extras our tour guide Regan provided such as wine at dinner, evening hunt for gelato, gentle optional hikes, and chocolates on the bus were welcome surprises. Coach driver Math is a gem & added much to our experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"On an evening walk in Florence, with the crowds gone and the city quiet, a string quartet was playing in the courtyard of the Uffizi Gallery. It was enchanting."

Patricia

Arlington, TX

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful tour. First time to go on a Rick Steves' tour. Always in the past have planned my European excursions (using his guidebooks ) so it was really nice to go and have everything planned. Of course, I give Ragen a great deal of credit for his excellent guidance!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several "wow" moments . First would be the first sight of the snow capped Alps --truly reflecting God's marvelous creation. Second would be the Eiffel Tower. I'm a really really big fan of Paris!!! Pantheon in Rome was also a "wow" moment."

Nina

Orange, CA

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Perfect! Loved staying in historic parts of the cities and towns we visited and within walking distance of some of the best must see sites in the area.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Florence! Listening to classical musicians (buskers) in the Uffizi courtyard during our evening walking tour and sitting in a curbside cafe having a glass of vino with scooters and cars roaring by."

Gary

Corsicana, TX

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Everything was very good except the hotel in Bacharach, Germany. While I was there at that hotel, it was so bad that all I wanted to do was to leave and come home. That place was a dump!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Switzerland"

Bob

Happy Valley, OR

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is the first tour that my wife or I have been on. The experience was delightful. From the moment we met Regan our "tour guide" to the moment we all said goodbye. The tour felt like a well oiled machine. (I suppose an experienced tour guide has a lot to do with that). Europe in 21 days? Very well done Rick Steve's Tours! Very well done.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bev my wife went on the tour to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. In Venice, everyone in our tour wanted to do the gondola tour. Much to our surprise (and not realizing until after talking to Matt and Debbie who were celebrating their 30th anniversary). Regen put both us couples on the gondola with the guitar player and operatic singer. Made for a very special memory for both couples. The other "wow" moment was hiking in Switzerland with Regan and the group."

David

Gillette, WY

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a wonderful tour experience (as I expected - and I wasn't let down). Exactly what I expected from Rick Steve's Tours. I am a repeat customer, and will continue to be in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I am a hiker, so my two favorite "wow" moments were the day we hiked in the Alps and the day I hiked over the mountain ridges from Monterosso to Vernazza. The weather wasn't great but it didn't prevent us from going in either place. I found the Alps amazing. We don't have anything comparable here."

Barbara

Lake Elsinore, CA

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great experience. With Ragen as or tour guide how could you possibly go wrong. Our tour group of 28 was just the right size. I have been to most of the countries before but it was such a long time ago that I just wanted a sampling of each so if I were to go back I could limit myself to the areas I really want to explore. Ragen made the trip fun, informative and the memories I have taken away will last a life time. The local tour guides were good as well, some better than others.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's been on my bucket list to go to Cinque Terre for over 30 years and it didn't disappoint me. It was a WOW moment. And Switzerland, how beautiful and serene is this country. Riding the bus (btw, Math was a great bus driver) and going into Switzerland provided me with many WOW moments. For sure, this is God's country!!"

Janet

Lake Elsinore, CA

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I learned so much about each country and everything was planned well as far as how many days you stayed at places and the attractions we went to and the amount of free time was balanced nicely.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many wow moments but my favorite was the Swiss Alps."

Debra

Antelope, CA

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was definitely a trip of a lifetime. We were celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary and every day was a new adventure. There were days when we would stand in awe of the scenery or buildings/churches and have to pinch ourselves.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Regan had arranged a gondola ride for all of us in Venice. He also arranged for musicians to ride along with us and another couple who were celebrating their 40th anniversary."

Nancy

Kelowna, BC

Tour: 09/10/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour provided the level of structure and free time to explore that my husband and I were looking for. The instructions/suggestions provided prior to the tour were very helpful, particularly the suggestion to travel with a carry-on sized bag. In total we were away from home 37 days so we were truly tired of the clothes in that suitcase but the size of the bag made our travels within the tour and after much easier. I couldn't imaging getting on and off transport with a larger bag.

David

Colorado Springs, CO

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Stimulus overload. I've never seen so much beauty in such a short time span. We tried to keep a journal of our trip. Soon, we found it impossible. The long days of standing and walking and gawking left us exhausted at the end of the day. But I have to say, even on our "down time" we kept up a grueling pace. There's just so much to see and do. We loved our trip and certainly hope to do it again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moment? Only one? Impossible to say. Was it the Sistine Chapel? The statue of David, which brought me close to tears? The Pieta? Perhaps the Mona Lisa. The magnificence of hiking in the Alps? Allow me to put it this way, instead of "Rick Steves' Europe," call it "Rick Steves' European WOW Tour." Everyday had a "wow.""

Kyle

Eugene, OR

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was the best way to experience Europe, especially for the first time. The number of places we visited and the sights we saw are innumerable. I keep looking back through my photos in awe of what we did. There weren't any moments that I wish I had done differently.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I've had some time to think about this and I'd have to say that walking into St. Peter's Basilica was probably the most amazing part for me. It was simply so grand and breathtaking in its entirety."

Mary

Round Rock, TX

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Unforgettable. What an amazing experience. So much more than I was expecting. Great guide and Bus Driver. All were so knowledgeable. Great sense of humor. Loved it all want more of this. So many people followed me on facebook. They all want to do the same. Loved all of the local guides. Especially Elizabeth. So funny. Thanks to all who helped coordinate such a flawless trip. Loved, loved, loved it all Rick Steves knows Europe!,,,,

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the Vatican and Rome. Loved allthe food and wine."

Bud

Coeur D Alene, ID

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

very good experience

Favorite "WOW" moment

"berner overlan and tyrol"

Kenneth

Round Rock, TX

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Good tour, Demitri was very good. Knowledgeable, and very interesting. The tour group was a lot of fun and every one was a good sport.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed Rome and Paris the most. Very good food and lots to see."

Judith

Colorado Springs, CO

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The 2017 Best of Europe Tour was outstanding. The group of people we were with were wonderful and that helped to make this tour great. Dimitri was a fantastic guide and made the tour interesting and fun. Jean was a great driver and also made the trip enjoyable. I am already looking at another trip for 2018.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite WOW moment was the landscape in Switzerland. What a beautiful country. The lush, green valley was unforgettable. The waterfalls were beautiful. Hiking in the Alps while it was snowing was a cold, wonderful, memorable experience."

Thomas

New Berlin, WI

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Thoroughly enjoyed it all! These were bucket list destinations and all unique in their own special way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our expectations were high everywhere we went. Every stop was great, but I think the Netherlands was most surprising. It was a real gem... interesting culture, friendly people, great food and plenty to see and do. In second place, was Lauterbrunnen...only because the weather, but the beauty is beyond words."

Vickie

Santa Clara, CA

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour far exceeded my expectations. I loved the variety of activities, the local guides, eating foods from each region, and staying in small towns and villages, big cities too. Though some days were long, and we were up and out early, there were opportunities to rest. Our tour leader, Dimitri, was dynamic! He set the tone for our group creating a "family" culture from the start. His knowledge of each area and the travel skills he shared empowered me to reach out to the locals and explore.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments. But what I will remember most is walking to the harbor in Vernazza, then climbing up the tower at Castello Doria, a scene taken right out of a photograph I have at home. Hiking in the Swiss Alps when it was snowing was very special too."

Craig

Salt Lake City, UT

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We enjoyed our tour immensely. It was very thorough for the cities visited and Dimitri made it entertaining and informative. I enjoyed it most when we used the headsets. I was able to hear better and it allowed me to keep up on the narrative while I moved around the group photographing all of the areas we were visiting. The way we first explored as a group allowed us to feel comfortable to navigate on our own when time permitted. The sites chosen were great. Too short at some sites as expected

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When we missed a tram in Rome, the look on Dimitri's face as the train left us was priceless. The real wow moment though was the Forum."

Shelley

Salt Lake City, UT

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was amazing. We covered six countries and had many cultural experiences. It was definitely the trip of a lifetime. We also made some friends from the tour group, which was definitely a plus!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Driving through the Alps - the scenery was breathtaking. Quite a difference traveling from hot Rome to the snow covered Alps."

Michael

Prescott, WI

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our Best of Europe (21 days) tour was all it was cracked up to be. What always makes things like this work are the people and our tour group was so wonderful. Neither my wife or I would hesitate to travel anywhere with anyone of the group members. Our guide (Dmitri) was also something special. I particularly appreciated the fact of his willingness to discuss some very personal viewpoints of his.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was the whole tour. From beginning to end, just when you'd thought you'd seen it all, you'd round a corner and something even more fabulous than before would pop up. The little surprise side-trips (e.g., to Munich) were an added bonus."

Alan

Sunriver, OR

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A very informative and fun experience. It was enjoyable to see places I had read about over the years and to re-visit some sites that I had not seen in many years. It was great for my wife to experience and see Europe as she had not been there before. It was much less stressful than my first trip to Europe as the Rick Steves program provided the logistics to see Europe and we could relax and take it all in.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have always loved Switzerland and the Alps. We hiked in the new fallen snow to Kleine Scheidegge and although it was cloudy and snowy it was a fun experience. The Lauterbrunnen Valley is gorgeous and I took a hike on my own in the late afternoon and evening to see the stream, waterfalls and lush green countryside. Switzerland is so clean and fresh and beautiful that its a place I would return to many times. In some ways it is similar to my home state of Oregon. The Swiss were very friendly."

Manuel

Santa Clara, CA

Tour: 09/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Way, way more than what I expected. First of all, the people in our tour group were wonderful. It was as if we had all been hand picked and brought together. And our guide, Dimitri, did a fantastic job. From the start he made all of us feel comfortable with each other. It was like we had known each other forever.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "WOW" was when we were in Switzerland. I never imagined that I would someday be hiking in the Swiss Alps while it was snowing. Being a person who prefers sunshine and warmth, this truly caught me by surprise."

Peter

Sunnyvale, CA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I and my family had a fantastic experience during this trip. I enjoyed not only the places we visited in Europe, but the very good explanations and historical reviews and perspectives, of the places we visited, provided by our guide. I also enjoyed our guide's humor and his ability to relate to each and every member of the team young and old, male and female.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Louvre and Versailles"

Nancy

Springfield, IL

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is our second tour, do we knew all the good things to expect. The pre-planning information is very helpful. Upon arrival the hotels used by the company do their best to please. Tim was an exceptional tour guide, as well as the local guided. The planning went off without a hitch and all of the members of the tour were very happy with the experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watching the Eiffel Tower light up."

Kirk

Watkinsville, GA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour was exceptionally well-organized and executed. Transportation, lodging and meals were great. Selection of special events was excellent. Tour guide (Tim) was extremely knowledgeable and capable. His facility with multiple languages and knowledge of European history was a real plus.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the stay in Haarlem, with the mix of medieval buildings and modern living, and learning about how the Dutch embrace a physically-active lifestyle (bicycling). The other destinations were all wonderful, since I had not been to any before. I learned alot about Europe, which was my main goal. I was wowed by the monumental cathedrals and other buildings built during medieval times, that will never be attempted again."

Patrick

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip definitely exceeded my expectations. This was my first RS tour and I was a bit concerned about spending 3 weeks with 26 complete strangers. The pre-trip information and expectations for the travelers was excellent in term of establishing the right "culture" for our traveling team. The people were wonderful and all the logistical issues of travel were entirely covered by RSE; this allowed us to relax and fully enjoy all the daily amazing sights and experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bacharach Germany: Staying in the Hotel Kranenturm, walking to the Werner Chapel in the morning, exploring the Rheinfels Castle and then seeing several villages and castles from the Rhine river cruise in the afternoon. (That's a long "wow" moment!)"

Lorraine

Thorold, ON

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

From the moment we arrived in Haarlem and met Tim and the rest of our tour group I could sense that this was going to be a lot of fun. I was not disappointed! From tasting the regional dishes to laughing on the bus...this was a trip I will remember forever. To have every detail taken care of in advance made for a seamless no stress vacation. To discover so many sights and have so many OMG! moments in one vacation is quite frankly astounding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Since we've returned home I've had numerous people ask me "what was your favourite country, sight, experience etc". I find this very difficult to answer, it seemed at every bend in the road, every new village or city and every corner we turned there was another "WOW". And to have the history given along with the sights (whether it was Tim or a local guide) made the experience that much more of a Wow moment."

Lisa

Phoenix, AZ

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was everything I hoped it would be and more! Breathtakingly beautiful scenery, memorable and inspirational experiences enhanced by Tim's fascinating history lessons and insights (and humor), mouth-wateringly delicious food and drink, and all of it shared with an amazing group of interesting new friends. I kept thinking, "I can't believe I get to be HERE, doing THIS, with all of these wonderful people!"

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every day and every place produced "wow" moments. Churches and canals, museums, and gardens, sculptures and paintings, castles and ruins, bratwurst and boeuf bourgignon, the Vatican and the Alps, and on and on. Truly a trip of a lifetime!"

Judy

Colfax, CA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fantastic. It was well organized and exceeded my expectations. Tim was fabulous. Very knowledgeable, patient, organized and full of great surprises. He always made you feel that you were a special part of the tour. He knew everyone's name quickly and ensured that we were all having the time of our lives. Richard, our bus driver, was great. He engaged with the group, played great music on the bus and kept us safe on the road. An extermely skilled driver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved how Tim took us through Rome at night and stopped right before we got to the Pantheon, turned the corner, and there it was in all it's glory. It was a great moement. Even better to see inside the next morning."

Barbara

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As a fan of "things well administered" I'm giving 3 cheers to the RS team for the suberb attention to detail and also the cheerful willingness to go with the flow when the situation demanded (and it did). Hats off to Tim's easy going optimism and joie de vivre that helped keep everyone's attitudes in the positive range. I loved getting to know my fellow travelers and the unique contribution made by each one to the team dynamic. Now we're signed up for Ireland in the Spring!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Finding a small, carved wooden crucifix at the Bargello gallery in Florence, attributed to Michelangelo's 'student days.' No crowds, very quiet...just me, Jesus, Michelangelo. And food, wine, art and architecture!"

Elizabeth

Rancho Cordova, CA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tim is a terrific guide, the group we were with were really nice folks. My plan was to get a taste of each region so I could know where I wanted to go back later and spend more time. I loved the ones I expected to, but I also loved the places I didn't expect to. The days were busy but not too overwhelming. Rooms could be snug, especially the showers, but it was a reasonable compromise to be able to stay in the interesting places we stayed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So difficult to choose! It felt like there were new "wow"s every day! If I have to pick just one it would have to be sitting in a coffee shop in Piazza San Marco, Venice after a rain storm and seeing the reflections of the buildings in the water standing in the square."

Patsy

Puyallup, WA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was the most incredible tour I've ever taken! It had just the right amount of guided tour time balanced with free time on our own to explore the area. I have taken tours and the guides would be informative, however, the local tour guides we had were personable, while being informative. The only negative I can say about a local guide was Tom (?) in Bacharach. He went way over the length of time allowed. He acknowledged he knew he was going long but continued on for another 30+ minutes.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The spectacular views traveling from Italy to Switzerland! Around every corner was another amazing view. and this was even with obstructed views of the Alps due to clouds and intermittent rain. There were a number of lakes during that drive that were also very picturesque. Everyone's cameras were snapping pictures on both sides of the bus during that drive."

Connie

Estacada, OR

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tim was amazing. He taught us, joked with us, kept us safe, was patient and had the energy to keep going. The various guides taught us about their city clearly and for the most part in a concise manner. Each of the hotels was unique and charming. They all had a special charm. I came home exhausted but willing to go again after a long rest.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Beaune surprised me with the owner's personal remarks, the wine tasting and the show the town puts on at night on the walls of the buildings. Very creative."

Richard

Phoenix, AZ

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

An excellent sampler of Europe. I couldn't have asked for a better experience. Now I can evaluate each country and decide if I want to do a more in-depth trip to any county.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The interior of the Pantheon."

Joann

Fond Du Lac, WI

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was everything and more than expected. Tim was an excellent tour guide . He made the trip so much fun for everyone. Also, our driver, Richard was great. He and Tim were a great team and made the whole experience wonderful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't know if there was any favorite "wow" moment. The whole trip was "WOW"! I think we enjoyed the traveling through the countryside and seeing the mountains in Switzerland, but we also enjoyed the bigger cities that we visited."

Becky

Davidson, NC

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great content from morning until night -- just see the itinerary! I liked the rhythm of it, sleeping two nights in a place, seeing the major sights, getting to know a place some, then on the road again. Even heavy coach days were filled with beautiful scenery, informative and sometimes humorous mini-history lessons, getting to know other folks, special lunch stops -- oh, and chocolate & gelato all along the way. Not to mention enough ideas, books, and movies to explore for the year to come.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One was the Wieskirche, the Rococo-style church in Germany. How does it get any better than beautiful rolling countryside accompanied by cow bells and church bells playing together? Inside, creamy white, blue and gold set off by abundant light. A second, realizing there wasn't just the one waterfall you strained to take a picture of from the bus coming into Switzerland. And, alas, riding into Paris with Edith Piaf playing over the speaker system. She makes perfect sense there."

Mark

Colfax, CA

Tour: 08/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fantastic. It was well organized and exceeded my expectations. Tim was fabulous. Very knowledgeable, patient, organized and full of great surprises. He always made you feel that you were a special part of the tour. He knew everyone's name quickly and ensured that we were all having the time of our lives. Richard, our bus driver, was great. He engaged with the group, played great music on the bus and kept us safe on the road. An extermely skilled driver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved how Tim took us through Rome at night and stopped right before we got to the Pantheon, turned the corner, and there it was in all it's glory. It was a great moment. Even better to see inside the next morning. The whole tour was a WOW experience!"

Theresa

Edmonds, WA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a trip of a lifetime for my husband and I and we had very high expectations. We were not disappointed! Cary, our guide, was amazing. She prepared us so well for every stop...from the itinerary, to brief language and culture information. Every stop was breathtaking and unforgettable. I was worried about laundry and they build that into the schedule. Yes, you actually only need a carry-on for 21 days :)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's so hard to pick because there were many but Trummelbach Falls in Switzerland was spectacular. I was expecting the Mona Lisa to be, the David, and the Sistine Chapel, but the falls was unexpected. The German countryside was amazing and there were special "surprises" built into the schedule that were so much fun!"

Arvinder

Brea, CA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a trip beyond what I thought it would be like. The tour guides Cary and her assistant Erin were terrific in helping and guiding, The chosen hotels were interesting, clean, and comfortable and all of them had great breakfasts. All the meals provided by the tour were authentic, fresh, local and delicious. Enjoyed the passion of all the local tour guides. The group of fellow travellers was terrific.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tour guide Cary was my "wow" of the trip. She was passionate, understanding, thoughtful, resourceful, inspiring, intelligent, kind, and with all the common sense needed."

Elizabeth

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everywhere we went was amazing. The format where we learned about the city/country and dinners together were so helpful in getting us oriented. Our tour guide, Cary and her assistant Erin were so helpful and friendly. There were no stupid questions and they each deserve a medal for answering questions repeatedly without getting too frustrated!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Fireworks in Lauderbrunnen. It was amazing to be in the pasture with a huge bonfire watching (and FEELING!) the fireworks. The sound was amazing as it reverberated off the rock wall face. Then back at the hotel we could see fireworks being shot off from the rock face across from the hotel. My birthday in Florence was so special. I am a preschool teacher so when the restaurant owner's grandchild and her friend drew me pictures and encased them in a child-made envelop, I was so moved!"

Mary

Fair Oaks, CA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very enjoyable. Saw a lot and learned a lot!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Village of Haarlem"

Gary

Fair Oaks, CA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Saw a lot....did a lot. Really enjoyed the other members of our tour group. Cary and Erin were great. They gave lots of individual attention to everyone....never appeared stressed or rattled. Good sense of humor. Good balance between bus rides and two day stays. Also, good balance between planned activities and free time. Wide range of physical activities available for everyone from avid hikers to those preferring more shuttle, gondola, Metro rides, etc. Busy three weeks!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Swiss Alps views were unbelievable!"

Liz

Ashvile, OH

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed the overall experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The hike through Switzerland was beautiful and the time was perfect for everyone to choose how much they wanted to do for the day."

Susan

Escondido, CA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was incredibly impressed with this tour. It was well planned and expertly run. Cary and Erin did a fantastic job of orchestrating everything. It was nice to see Europe without the hassles of planning. I liked the combination of guided tours and free time. I loved the hotels and the food. This was my second Rick Steven' tour, and I hope to go on another one.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Nothing compares to the Swiss Alps, but I had been there previously, and thus was aware of their grandeur. My favorite Wow on this trip was Haarlem. I wasn't expecting this beautiful, quaint, romantic town. I wish we could have stayed longer."

Robert

Gresham, OR

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This 21 day tour was amazing. It would have been impossible to see all the things we saw and do all the things we did without the guidance and planning of your staff. My wife and I had been told by our world traveler friends that this tour was the most complete tour available - and they were 100% right! The time went by so quickly. I still wake up in the middle of the night thinking that I am in Rome,Paris,or ? and I have a bus to catch.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is difficult to say what was my favorite "wow" moment - there were so many. It seemed like there were at least 2-6 "wow" moments per day! Standout would have to be: 1. Playing a duet on the Alpenhorn with the professional player in Lauterbrunnen (Cary set up) 2. Going to a concert of Vivaldi's "Four Seasons" at Vivaldi's Church in Venice (Cary helped us arrange) 3. Neuschwanstein Castle, gondola boat ride in Venice, Trevi Fountain, Schilthorn, Louve, Versailles."

Bill

Elizabethton, TN

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

THIS WAS A BUCKET LIST TRIP. IT WAS CERTAINLY ONE OF THE MOST REWARDING EXPERIENCES MY WIFE AND HAVE EVER HAD. WHEN YOU CONSIDER ALL THAT WE WERE ABLE TO SEE AND DO, IT WAS A TREMENDOUS VALUE. RICK STEVES GROUP TOOK CARE OF ALL THE ARRANGEMENTS AND GUIDING WHICH LEFT US WITH SPENDING OUR TIME ENJOYING THE TRIP. FAR EXCEEDED OUR EXPECTATIONS.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"tHERE WERE SO MANY WOW MOMENTS, BUT I SUPPOSE THE MY FAVORITE WOULD BE THE ALPS. WE TOOK A HIKE THE SCENERY WAS BREATH TAKING."

Jane

Gresham, OR

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was out first time in Europe and our first Rick Steves' tour. It was awe-inspiring and phenomenal! We are still reeling from the cultural effects and the fast pace of the 21 days tour. We wake up each morning thinking we should be in Paris or Venice or Rome. We wish we could have spent an extra day in each city-no maybe a week! Everyday experiences and vistas here at home are comfortable, but do not provide the "zing" of travel. We are hooked!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many wow moments: The breathtaking view from the top of the Schilthorn, the charming town of Bacharach, the cavernous yet intimately spiritual St. Peter's Basilica in Rome, the romantic gondola ride in Venice with accordion music and soloist, my professional trumpet-playing husband playing a duet on the Alpenhorn in Lauterbrunnen, and our tour group saying goodbye in the shadow of the illuminated Eiffel Tower in Paris."

Virginia

Brentwood, CA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour delivered everything it promised & more. Every place we went was a feast for all the senses!Our tour guide Cary & her assistant, Erin were fabulous!Everything was thoughtfully planned & executed.This meant that all you had to do was enjoy the trip & create wonderful memories. The local guides were terrific & an indispensable aspect of the tour. They made history comes alive. This tour is wonderfully exhausting! Embrace traveling light & wear good walking shoes.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many wow moments to choose from but the drive to the Swiss Alps & our alpine hike were my very favorite "wow" moments. Nature at its best - it was so impossibly beautiful!"

Roque

Holyoke, MA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My experience touring Europe was very enjoyable indeed. I was very happy looking at the architecture of 500 to 2000 years ago and how well preserved and still being use for public and private benefit. Visiting the small European towns were the best part of the trip. Towns like Cinque Terrace, Rothenberger, Buchara and Orvieto were very pleasant to see and dive into the culture, history and culinary arts. They offer a plethora of sights, culture and arts that are typical of the country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The small historical town out of the beaten path were my wow moments."

Robert

Brentwood, CA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The 21 day Best of Europe trip with Cary as the principle guide was amazing, educating, physically exhausting, and perfect all in one sentence. Cary and Erin, her assistant, made every effort w/ the utmost patience, to deliver a 5-star experience for each of us. Each day started early and we were out the door to explore. We learned a great deal about local customs, different languages, meals, history, and geography. This tour comes with an emphatic - Go do it!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wife and I got up early (6am) each day. We tried to beat the crowds to heavy tourist sights. "Wow" moment(s): Our gondola ride in Venice with the music aboard. There were several gondolas for the entire tour, but my birthday was a few days before. Cary didn't forget that, as well as for another couple that was celebrating their anniversary, so the musician and singer were on our (4 of us) small boat - WOW,- LOVED IT! That was very special."

Stanley

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Blowtorch fine!!! Carey led us from one "mountain top" experience to another. She is the WoWessa of WoW! She is the Cappo di tute Guido (guide). She is a peach! She was very helpful and organized. She was high energy and positive (when did she sleep? She helped us get tickets to the Eiffel Tower when we lost them. She gave very good advice on where to go and where not to go. We loved the historical background, maps, and vocabulary lists she gave us for each town or city we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Florence was our favorite city by far. My wife celebrated birthday and Carey got her a cake! Two little girls made pictures for my wife! Way too cool! The Academia and the Uffizzi Gallery were fascinating and a bit overwhelming. Our guide (Ricardo) at those two places was extremely knowledgeable: he pointed out that Michelangelo's David was preparing to bash-in Goliath's head with a rock, and he(Ricardo) sang for us the Puccini aria from "A Room with A View". That dude is a dude! Bravo!"

Anna

London, ON

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I really enjoyed this tour. It was really well organised with great guides and tour mates. A great introduction to Europe!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hearing the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris fill with music from the organ was a "wow" for me."

Joseph

Augusta, ME

Tour: 07/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I love to travel. I've been many places but never to Europe so this was my first time visiting all the places on the 21 day tour. First I would like to say that Rick does an excellent job getting you ready for the tour. He takes care to pass on his knowledge and tips on travel in Europe. What I think he has also done very well, is pass on his passion and his knowledge to his tour guides. It is Rick and in my case, Cary and her assistant Erin that made the trip so special.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every day had it's own WOW moment. When I look back, it's hard to believe how much I saw. Many sights and landmarks made me say wow. From the Coliseum to the Eiffel Tower, every sight was amazing. I think my most incredible moments were when nature took over. The mountains and waterfalls of Switzerland made me speechless. Following Rick's advice to "get lost" at least once and see Europe through the back door made the trip great. Connecting with locals made it special."

Donna

Port Orchard, WA

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

The sights we were able to see were fabulous. I enjoyed Amsterdam before the tour. I would have liked more time in Harlem. We were squished in Italy and I got a sense that the locals were tired of tourist. The hotel personnel in Cinque Terre were very nice and accommodating. Italy is HOT in the summer time. I loved the hike in the Swiss Alps. The food overall was fair. We had 2 REALLY awesome meals. We were disappointed that the bus tour in Paris was replaced with another walking tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Swiss Alps were amazing. Biking in Paris after the tour and in Harlem before the tour was fabulous. Climbing the Dome and Bell Tour in Florence was a dream come true."

David

Steilacoom, WA

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was life changing to walk through Europe and travel back through time. Our guide Dimitri did an awesome job every step of the journey. I could better see and understand the changes and struggles that occurred in Europe over the past 1500 years through this tour. We also, through Dimitri and the host of local experts, got a real sense of people living today in these incredible places. We also met some incredible fellow travelers and made lasting friendships and memories.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to limit to 500 words. The beautiful interior of the first church in Haarlem; seeing the bikes in Amsterdam; seeing my first (of hundreds!) castle; the cruise up the Rhine; waking up in Bacharach during a storm; the hike along the lake to castles in Austria; seeing St Marks for the first time; being on the water in Venice; being in the Vatican; hiking in the Alps; Paris on Bastille day; there was honestly a wow moment for me each and every day!"

Bambi

Salem, OR

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful experience. Was great sampler. The best part was sharing it with my beautiful daughter.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had been to Florence, Venice and Rome which of course had wow moments. Cinque Terre under a full moon was my wow moment, the Alps in Switzerland were beautiful and awe inspiring!"

Jesse

Eugene, OR

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Swiss Alps walk was fantastic and picturesque"

David

Port Orchard, WA

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Centrally located hotels, comfortable bus, and knowledgeable guide. We did have personality conflicts among some of the adults that created some tense times, but it was nothing that couldn't be handled.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Swiss mountains were breathtaking."

Jean

Steilacoom, WA

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our experience exceeded my expectations in all regards. We immensely enjoyed exploring Europe with fellow travelers and the freedom from worry provided through letting the arrangements and planning be handled by others and the presence of a fun and knowledgeable guide. Every day seemed like it was the highlight of the trip, only to be out-done the next day. We feel blessed to have been a part of a wonderful group of travelers and look forward to lasting friendships with many of them.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many wow moments. My favorite was the first time my 15 year old son spontaneously hugged me and said "thank you so much for taking me on this amazing trip mom." He did this many times, typically when we were out walking about and always unsolicited. We took the trip so our kids could develop an appreciation for different cultures and the rich history of Europe. The trip delivered far beyond what we had hoped for. We can't wait for our next Rick Steves tour!"

James

Apo, AE

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I have to say I was a little concerned about taking a tour with a bunch of strangers. Overall the tour experience was outstanding. We had a few problems but they were handled promptly and professionally. I have to say that our class was quite loud but Dimitri handled the group with respect and firmness. He was a consistent, professional, and caring tour leader. I have to say I was impressed by his energy and his ability to keep the tour interesting from start to finish.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several "wow" moments...each place we visited had its own interesting appeal. I loved being off the beaten path and seeing the beauty of nature. If I was to take this tour by myself, I don't think I would have seen or experience half as much. It felt like a private tour tailored for me."

Gaetan

Edmonds, WA

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was a very active tour, as expected. I actually lost 2 pounds even though i ate more than I would at home. We covered a large number of sights but sometimes time was more limited than I would have liked for a given spot. But, all in all, it was a pleasant trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The view from the town of Lauterbrunnen was spectacular. Even though the town is in a valley, the sight of the mountains and cliffs above us was inspiring."

Joaquin

Spokane, WA

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was fantastic, so glad I got the pleasure to go. Cities were great, road stops were much nicer than one would expect. Things were facilitated wonderfully. The bus rides were very comfortable. Wouldn't trade the vacation for anything!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watching the fireworks and lit up Eiffel Tower on Bastille day, concluding our tour while drinking champagne."

Tonya

Spokane, WA

Tour: 06/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Incredible! On our own, we wouldn't have visited half the places we accessed as a guided group and with so little hassle. Almost everything was arranged for us in advance which gave me the freedom to be fully present and aware of all the magic set before me. I appreciated the access, the variety of activities, our amazing guide, the family feeling, the built-in safety and the high level of FUN! I will treasure this memory for my lifetime. I called it Europe Camp by the 3rd day. Lucky us!!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Swimming in the moonlight in Monterosso al Mare, Cinque Terre."

Linda

Petaluma, CA

Tour: 06/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The main factor contributing to our overall rating was our tour guide, Lisa. She brought a lot of energy, enthusiasm, knowledge and sensitivity to the needs of our tour members. She was extremely organized and had an incredible communication style and ability. The itinerary was top-notch and the activities planned were extensive but not overwhelming. The local guides added another wonderful dimension to the trip. On top of that, the other members of our tour were lovely and fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were too many to mention! However, among them were the gondola ride in Venice, the mountain-top hike in Switzerland, the group meals and tours, all the museums and guides, and the bus tour in Paris. Everything was so well planned and executed, it's difficult to name a favorite. The American cemetery in Italy was especially poignant. The entire tour exceeded our (very high) expectations."

Marlene

Thornton, CO

Tour: 06/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary by taking the 21 Best of Europe trip. It was amazing and beyond my expectations!!! Every place we visited just got better and better as we went along. Just when I thought I had died and gone to heaven we moved to another country/city and it was even better. Lisa, our tour guide, was totally amazing!! She took great care of us and taught us everything we needed to know along the way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had many "WOW" moments on this trip but my "MOST WOW MOMENT" was Cinque Terre. As we stepped off the the train we were greeted by the most beautiful turquoise blue water and stunning, quaint 5 little villages tucked in the side of the mountain. My husband and I took the train to 4 of the 5 little towns to explore. We had the Seafood Pot at The Belvedere which was amazing and way too much food for 2 people, but oh so yummy! Paris, Switzerland and Venice came in second!"

Lisa

Idaho Falls, ID

Tour: 06/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall it was FABULOUS!! It could not have been better from beginning to end. All went so smoothly, even when our bus broke down, the tour group just accepted the hiccup as a little extra time to wander in Rothenburg! Our tour guide, Lisa, and our bus driver, Joe, just kept things moving along as if all had been planned, what wonderful people! Again a Top Knotch tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is very difficult to have a favorite "wow" moment, but I think the night gondola ride down the canal's of Venice that our tour guide Lisa arranged for our whole group must be one of those "wow" moments! It was so beautiful and relaxing. Quite the "Wow" moment for all of us."

Kristin

Chico, CA

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the trip of a lifetime for our family before our daughter graduates from high school next June. Thanks so much for giving us so many memorable experiences! We could not have done this trip on our own in the given time frame, the logistics would have been a nightmare. Instead we got an action packed (loved all the walking), hassle-free, stress-free vacation with a wonderful guide, Tim, and met a great group of folks. What more could one ask for?

Favorite "WOW" moment

"#1: canals in Haarlem and Amsterdam #2: Italy - the over the top opulence of the churches, mind boggling! #3: Switzerland - Trummelbach Falls - loved the rushing glacier water inside the mountain, it was very spiritual for me #4: overall - loved the various architectural styles of each place, building technology at the time was amazing"

Andrew

New Market, AL

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great format for helping us on our first, but not last tour with your company. Our guide, Tim made the experience that much more rewarding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Whatever location I woke up in each day."

Terri

Charlotte, NC

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Haarlem was very easy to get to and Haarlem/Amsterdam were very easy places for newbies to enter Europe. English was spoken by everyone and the cities are small and not overwhelming. English was spoken in almost all places we stopped actually, even if you spoke their native language to them first. Our Tour Group was excellent & made the trip even better. We brought out 14 year old twins and there were other older teens on the trip. Great overview of Europe and exposure to their cultures!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many European sites were "wow" worthy, but the most beautiful nature scene was the alps in Switzerland! The canals in the Netherlands and Venice were stunning and the architecture was mind boggling. How did they build such complex and ornate structures so many hundreds of years ago. I do not believe that we could do it today!"

Jane

South Jordan, UT

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Since we've been home friends and family have asked about our trip. Our answer is "better than we dreamed it would be!" The "bonus" for us was the people on the tour. Tim set the stage for good attitudes, and good relationships in our first meeting. I felt like we jumped right into each city prepared to see the sites and love it. The pace was good and town/cities gave us variety. The materials, app and guidebooks set reasonable expectations for handling luggage, etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So hard to say. Each day seemed to be the best. If not for the lure of the next destination we'd still be in Haarlem! Venice was the place I was most looking forward to and it didn't disappoint. It bring tears eyes now when I think about our twilight ride in the gondola with the singer and accordion player; when we turned a corner as were blown away by the sight of a cathedral in the spotlights. What a night! The Pieta was a moment for me. Experience exceeds imagination!"

Dean

Renton, WA

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

My first impression of the group and tour guide were very good. I wasn't sure what to expect. But, Tim was very social, energetic and informative. The orientation walks were excellent in easing us toward the actual tour. I enjoyed the relaxed feeling Tim gave us and was so glad we didn't have to wear name tags and follow a guide with a dumb flag. Also,letting us know there were no strict rules and that if any part of the walking tours were too much to handle, we could return to hotel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow,there were several. First,Tim's knowledge of each area, town and country were very informative, fun and gave an understanding of W. Europe's history. Germany is where my dad was born and seeing so many parts of it, especially, the mountainous regions. Also, Switzerland, Venice and the Villages along Meditoranion. The long drive from there to Switzerland was too much for many of us."

Peggy

Boulder City, NV

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We really enjoyed Tim, our guide, and the excellent tour itinerary. We did the same tour two years ago and had a wonderful guide then as well (Dimitri). Each trip was for our graduating senior grandchildren with the hopes that they would expand "their world." Each trip accomplished that goal. We appreciated the upgrade in hotel accommodations from 2015. The other tour participants have become friends. Thank you, Rick Steves, for giving us forever memories and forever friendships!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can never get enough of the twinkling Eiffel Tower at night. An added bonus this year was being able to attend the Longines Show Jumping Event! Best of all: our grandchildren "grew up" on this tour. It is an amazing thing to watch."

Denise

San Jose, CA

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, the tour experience was beyond my expectations. The group of people who were in our group were fabulous, kind, positive people. We couldn't have had a better group! Tim was a knowledgeable, kind, patient guide who was very obviously passionate about travel and history! He was funny and really kept things light-hearted! It was obvious that everyone liked each other and was able to sit with every other couple or single during meals or tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The trip on the gondola up the mountain and the falls associated with it. Also, Versailles was a wow moment, as well. There was so many little moments during this tour; my bike ride in Haarlam, seeing Notre Dame, some of our hotels, the view from a McDonald's in Switzerland, the stop in Switzerland at a scenic spot, the Bacharach hikes, the Night Watchman talk, etc."

Marcia

Bountiful, UT

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great taste of the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Switzerland and France!!I loved learning a bit of history of each place and seeing the beautiful sites along the way!! I liked that it was a bit physically demanding! I definitely reached my steps goal & beyond daily! And I liked that there was just enough free time in each place to explore or rest! But what really made it great was the group of people I was with throughout the trip! They were fun, friendly & happy people to be around!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moment would have to be the Swiss Alps! The mountains, valleys, lakes, green vegetation and waterfalls were absolutely breathtaking! It was very peaceful and calming to me!"

Paul

North Vancouver, BC

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I saw everything I needed to see, and felt that I did not miss out on anything. You could not have fit anything else into the schedule. Every day was filled with so many new adventures. Our guide was knowledgeable and friendly. The other people on the tour were great to spend all of this time with.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many to mention, but if I had to pick one, it would be Hiking from Monterosso to Vernazza which our guide recommended, then swimming in the Mediterranean, and coming off the beach to wine and appies that our guide had set out."

Eric

Chico, CA

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

To me, travelling is the freedom to let life unfold and make unexpected discoveries along the way. So when my wife suggested that we travel with an organized group, I had low expectations. As it turned out, the Rick Steves' group has finely tuned its tour to provide something for everybody. So in the end, an independently minded solo traveler like myself is glad his wife talked him into it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The trip experience was so well honed that the whole tour was a "wow" moment. For me personally, I enjoyed the time to explore on my own."

Robert

Charlotte, NC

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The experience was great across 3 areas: 1) People all had similar view to travel - rare to have this 2) Guide was tremendous - Tim through his easy going nature and passion for history and travel made a HUGE difference 3) Site choices and mix of free time off was appropriate and sites well researched and as off the beaten path as you could given Europe in the Summer! The experience / hotels were ok - the rooms were all clean but lack of air conditioning hurt sleep quality

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to mention - Venice - St Mark's Square, Hiking in Switzerland, to name a few"

Tim

San Jose, CA

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Terrific! Pace was good, lots of variety re culture, history, food, sights, etc. Weather cooperated.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Trummelbach falls and Schilthorn thrill walk."

Alan

South Jordan, UT

Tour: 06/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every expectation was exceeded! Every day was "the best day" of the tour. I liked the pacing, agenda and format of this grande adventure. The tour was well thought out and [INVALID]d in every detail. You could tell the years of experience that went into putting this thing together. Thank you for letting me come along. i will never forget it. And I highly recommend it to all my friends and family who are considering going to Europe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had many wow moments. As an artist and art lover I of course loved my first views of the classics. Such a magical and overwhelming experience to stand in front of The David and The Prisoners and The Mona Lisa and on and on. The same can be said for the wonderful and amazing architecture we were constantly exposed to. Maybe my "wow" moment was my love and appreciation for the people I met and saw. My expectations were for the sights and sounds and history of Europe. The people wowed me."

Jeffrey

Santa Clara, CA

Tour: 06/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Amazing trip. Terrific tour guide, bus driver, group companions and, of course, European cities, food, museums, and sites. This was the best trip I've been on in my life. Every day brought something completely different and thoroughly enjoyable. I would definitely recommend this tour to anyone interested in seeing Europe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many wows for me that it's hard to pick just one. One day you're in Austria luging down the Alps and the next you're in Venice on a gondala. One day you're in the Vatican seeing St. Peter's and the next your on the Mediterranean in the Cinque Terre. If I had to pick one it would be seeing the d'Orsay museum in Paris with Van Gogh's Self portrait and the impressionist galleries in an amazing building."

Audrey

Kenmore, WA

Tour: 06/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an amazing, great trip for our first tour experience. We were very happy that we did not have to arrange anything and we were able to do so much and see you many places. Our bus driver, Richard, was excellent. He made the days on the bus every fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many great "wow" moments: Driving into the Swiss Alps was incredible, the night watchmen in Rothenberg was a highlight, but I also personally enjoyed the extra things like walking across the Tibetan Bridge in Austria and walking though the castle ruins, and the walking back to the hotel"

Fred

Kenmore, WA

Tour: 06/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a very good tour. I enjoyed the trip and would have liked to spend a few more days at several of the towns. But, very nice.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had several, the Tibetan cable bridge, a day up in the Swiss Alps, and the Night Watchman in Rothenberg."

Jennifer

Easley, SC

Tour: 06/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour not only met my expectations but it exceeded them! I was a little worried about the hotels that we would stay in but they where charming, unique, comfortable and most importantly right in the middle of it all. Jennifer was very knowledgeable and helpful about all the countries and cities that we stayed in. This being my first time in Europe I felt very comfortable able to navigate through foreign cities on my own. All our meals together were delicious. And the wine...ahh the wine.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"If I have to pick just one "wow" moment it would have to be everything about Switzerland and the Swiss Alps. They say a picture is worth a thousand words but sometimes... seeing it in real life... there are no words for it because it just leaves you speechless. But really the whole entire tour was a string of wow moments for me."

Tracy

Santa Clara, CA

Tour: 06/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I expected quite a lot and my experience was even better than my expectation. I particularly appreciated Jennifer's lectures as we headed into each new country and city. I appreciated them not just for myself but also for my spouse who had no time to prepare for the trip other than pack his clothes. I know the information he gained on the bus increased his enjoyment of what he saw on the trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was moved by the repeated historical reminders of antisemitism and the Holocaust as we traveled across Europe. I did not expect to hear about World War II, Jewish deportation, Stopelerstein in a medieval walled city, Bacharach. I am grateful to our local guide, Thomas, for sharing his family's stories."

Thomas

Manitou Springs, CO

Tour: 06/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Incredible execution. It would be difficult or impossible to arrange such an action packed and comfortable tour on your own at a reasonable cost.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment actually lasted about 21 days! We could not believe how much Rick Steves packed into our tour."

Kevin

Ferndale, MI

Tour: 06/04/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour was very well organized and planned. We covered a huge amount of ground and did a lot in 3 weeks. This tour, and I suspect other Rick Steves tours, is especially challenging for solo travelers like me. I chose this tour so I would not have to travel by myself. Since the tours are designed with a lot of free time, i ended up doing a lot of sightseeing and meals alone. In a couple of cities I had trouble finding a restaurant that would seat 1.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"(1) We went in together for a gondola ride in Venice and hired an accordion player and singer. It was magic, felt lime a dream. I was in tears. (2) Seeing Michelangelo's Pieta in St. Peter's Cathedral. Even though k it was behind plexiglass, I was stunned at the realism of the limp lifeless body of Jesus and the heartbroken expression of Mary."

Sandy

St Augustine, FL

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

On Grandpa's "bucket list", this intergenerational "grand tour" for our party of 5 ( pushing-70 grandparents, 40 yr old parents & middle school age grandaughter ) was definitely the right choice. We'd used Rick Steves' books for years to travel on our own thru Europe, but, did agree, having the plans made for us this time, at our age, created an enjoyable, seamless trip. Bus travel, also a first, was so relaxing that we each looked forward to getting back on when the time came!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Glancing up in the Steckleberg biergarten during the performance and seeing the tip of a snowcapped peak brilliantly golden-lit by the setting sun... alpenglow???"

Deborah

Everett, WA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was everything I hoped it could be and more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I thought about this question over the entire trip and still have trouble naming one..... but if I have to name just one it would be the Swiss Alps. We were blessed with a glorious, blue sky day, warm temperatures and alpine spring flowers. In the valley, as we were waiting for dinner we heard the sound of bells from the lane below. We all went to the window to see a small herd of cows being herded up the road... huge cow bells and all. I will never forget it."

Taby

Simi Valley, CA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had the most fantastic experience on this tour! The tour was obviously well planned out as there were no hiccups along the way. Our tour group immediately clicked and more times than not decided to hang out with each other even during our free times. It was nice having a small group size of 24, we really got to know everyone.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Going from the beach of the Cinque Terre to the Swiss Alps in the same day. Such different landscapes! Switzerland was the most beautiful place on the whole tour. After being in Italy for 8 days, Switzerland is a well deserved treat!"

Chris

Simi Valley, CA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was everything I wanted it to be and more! It was certainly tiring at times, but it was never dull. I loved the mix between small towns and large cities. The length of the tour was perfect for the amount of stuff we did, and I loved the "order" of the cities. Beginning in Haarlem was the perfect, easy introduction for a new traveler, building up to Rome. It was awesome having breakfasts provided at every hotel, and every hotel was perfectly situated in town and had friendly staff.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My top experiences which were "included" on the tour: 1. Michelangelo's David 2. Colloseum 3. Neuchwanstein Castle & The Alpine Luge 4. Venice Walking Tour 5. Rheinfels castle & boat on the Rhine My top experiences that I did on my own (not included on the tour/paid extra for tour guide to arrange): 1. Hiking in Switzerland & Schilthorn 2. Andech's Brewery 3. Red Light District of Amsterdam 4. Gondola in Venice 5. Cinque Terre free day"

Maria

Olympia, WA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

'Wonderful' might be the overall word, but I ran out of superlatives by the third day. I cannot believe how much we saw and learned - every moment was packed. This tour made so many things - history, art, travel stories - come alive in a way I had not imagined. Going with a group also provided an ease of travel and a measure of safety impossible to find otherwise. All I can really say is - if you are thinking about it, go!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking into Venice's Piazza San Marco at night was unexpectedly wonderful. Our group turned a corner, and there it was. It seemed like a festival was going on - musicians playing, people milling about and talking, kids throwing light-up toys in the air... to top it off, a warm breeze was blowing and the almost-full moon was peeking over the buildings. As a musician myself, being able to stand six feet away from a fantastic quintet that was playing some of my favorite music was unbelievable."

Brian

Everett, WA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This entire trip was everything we hoped for and much, much more!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I (like probably everyone else) have to give in and give "wow" to more than one: 1. Walking the cable at Schilthorn; 2.walking up the stairs in the metro and first sight is the Coliseum in Rome; 3. "getting lost" in Venice and roaming the streets and side streets 4.riding the luge. (I could go on and on!)"

Brandon

Everett, WA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful time.I could not have imagined a better vacation.I saw and learned things that will stick with me the rest of my life. Matt our leader was exceptional.His knowledge and leadership made our time together to short.Our bus driver "Big John" went above and beyond to make sure our trip was memorable. Matt and John became a great team. I will be back and would love to be with Matt and Big John again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Alps"

James

Gresham, OR

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded our every expectation. Our guide, Matt, was phenomenal - knowledgeable, fun and a great guy to have a beer with. The organization and itinerary were perfect and the little extras, like pickled herring in Amsterdam, Schnee balls in Rhothenburg (your right, Rick, they're over rated), just added that much more. Great trip, could not have been more pleased.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment of the trip (and it is hard to pick) was the 360° panaramic view from 9,740' Schilthorn in the Swiss Alps. Venice and the Roman Coliseum were close seconds."

Jacqueline

Newcastle, WA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was amazing! We saw an unbelievable number of famous sites, works of art, and areas of natural beauty; the three weeks passed by in a flash. Our guide, Matt, and bus driver, Big John, kept things fun and safe; both were very knowledgeable and taught us a lot about the areas we visited. The local guides all had tremendous pride in their cities and countries and added a lot to our appreciation of their parts of the world. Our Rick Steves Europe tour surpassed our expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

""Wow" moments happened every day; pictures can't convey the emotion of seeing Michelangelo's David (and so many other masterpieces),the beauty of the Swiss Alps and the expansive views of the Mediterranean Sea from the villages of the Cinque Terre, or the joy of sitting at a Parisian sidewalk café on Rue Cler. Every day was a new and amazing adventure."

Rick

St Augustine, FL

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall I found the tour to be a remarkably enjoyable experience. It was very well orchestrated...the carefully crafted itinerary, both in terms of the diversity of places visited and the variety of activities, provided my family with a comprehensive, superbly balanced European learning-adventure. The entire journey played out very smoothly through the skilled coordination of logistics by our splendid tour guide (Matt) in concert with our congenial bus driver (Big John).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Perhaps my favorite "wow" moment (of the many wonderful time slices during our travels) was the occasion in Switzerland when we all gathered outside in the yard of our hotel for a mini-concert in the cool evening air. We had just completed a delightful dinner together which began with an entertaining demonstration of the proper way of making excellent Swiss fondue (our first course)...as I recall, something about grandma's secret ingredient was involved. (Continued in Box 16 below.)"

Kay

Everett, WA

Tour: 05/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything was great. The trip exceeded my expectations. Our tour guide Matt did an excellent job of connecting with everyone in the group. Our coach driver Big John was wonderful and blended in very well with our group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Switzerland. The weather was perfect!"

David

Mukilteo, WA

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated the Best of Europe in 21 days! The tour was both exhilarating and exhausting! The tour provided a excellent sampling of Europe and more ideas for future travel. We also had an outstanding group travel experience. We enjoyed the company of our fellow travelers from across the U.S. and Canada.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We experienced "wow" moments every day...from our first day in Haarlem, becoming familiar with the bicycle culture of the Netherlands, to the last evening in Paris, under the twinkling Eiffel Tower with tour buddies!"

Tom

Van Nuys, CA

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

At 21 days the tour was almost too long. Even with the free days and an outstanding group of companions, by the time we got to the end we were running low on energy.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Panoramic views from the Schilthorn in Switzerland after taking 3 ski lifts/gondolas to get there. Magnificent !"

James

Grover, MO

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was Camila, Emilia's and my first trip to Europe, and our expectations were far exceeded by the experience of being part of a great group of fellow travelers.Truly a great group!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's one thing is to see Europe through different media, but it's another to be there and experience the grandiosity of it all! The entire trip was our "wow" moment!"

Krista

Rush, NY

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was an amazing experience. The weather was perfect, and each stop was unique. I loved the whole adventure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Driving through the Alps in Switzerland was definitely a highlight. Truly magical."

Gretchen

Rush, NY

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The guide, group, and weather were absolutely fantastic. The group meshed very well from the get go and Jesse became a part of the family as well. He always had great insights about the location we were at and the beautiful weather was the icing on the cake. His choice of music for the bus rides (especially through the alps) were also spot on. Kedang, Kedang!!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The bus ride through the alps and Lauterbrunnen valley. Jesse took us on a hike through the mountains and I was awed by the natural beauty of the valley. Trummelbach falls were also incredible. For those two reasons, this was my favorite location on the trip."

Joanne

Rush, NY

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We've been fans of Rick Steves for decades, first using his guide books as we traveled on our own in Europe beginning in the 1990's. This was our first group tour and it far exceeded our expectations in every way. Jesse is an incredibly knowledgeable, energetic and fun guide who went above and beyond to make every day special. We soon felt like we were traveling with friends we had know for years instead of just for days or weeks. A superb experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was 21 days of "Wow" moments, most days with multiple wows! The day we drove from Italy into Switzerland was incredibly clear and the mountain scenery around each bend just kept getting better and better. Arriving in Lauterbrunnen, with it's snow capped mountain peaks, thundering waterfalls and lush green hillsides dotted with chalets was an exquisite wow moment for me."

Mei

Winnipeg, MB

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I was so pleased that the entire trip was full of fun. Everything was above and beyond my expectation.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When we were up on the Swiss Alp and then climbed down to it, it was my favourite "wow" moment."

Steven

Sun Prairie, WI

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A fantastic trip with absolutely the best guide and wonderful tour mates. We bonded into a family which made it so much more enjoyable and Jesse just made everything fun and he did it effortlessly.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I believe it had to be seeing the Eifel Tower lite up at night, twinkling while we enjoyed wine with all my new friends."

Nelly

Wildwood, MO

Tour: 05/23/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed it very much. I liked the way it combined bigger cities with more relaxed and quieter places. The number of participants was adequate and allowed me the opportunity to interact with all of them. Our tour guide, Jesse, managed the group age differences (from 17 to 60+) in a very efficient way. He was able to create a group rapport that made us feel like a large inclusive family.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One of the many reason why I decided to purchase this tour was the visit to Cinque Terra. I fell in love with this part of Italy and will love to travel back to visit it some day."

Carolyn

Lake Forest, IL

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip was fantastic, from the weather, traveling companions, and especially the tour guide, Tim. Everything went smoothly so that we didn't have to concern ourselves with anything but moving our luggage from place to place. Everyone was considerate and Rick Steve's Tours are very well respected in Europe. We had a wonderful time and are recommending your tours to our friends

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Coliseum and Forum were significant but we also enjoyed the Swiss Alps. Our stop in Beone, was very enjoyable, especially the tour of the hospital. That was something I didn't know anything about and I always say any day that I learn something new is a good day. All the days were good days. Tim has a great handle on European history which made the bus rides pass quickly."

Deborah

Sarasota, FL

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

5+ ! This trip far exceeded even my high expectations! Every single day was an incredible adventure filled with tours, culture, history and fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is a hard question to answer. Every day brought with it a new adventure and many wonderful surprises. The wow moments range from a "took my breath away" seeing David for the first time to flying down the mountain on the luge track! Every day was a Wow!"

Allan

Sarasota, FL

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Going through some withdrawal as we did not want to come home. The perfect sampler tour to tick off all the highlights of the regions and cities visited. After reading about this part of Europe over the years I believe there is no substitute for an actual visit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michelangelo's David for the first time was clearly a "wow" moment. Most every day there was something new and or fun. There was no down time for us and that is what we liked. Loved the Rome twilight walking tour, hiking in Switzerland, climbing the stairs at Cinca Terre and the trains in Bacharach."

Karen

Santa Cruz, CA

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Exceeded expectations!! Loved the whole tour. It is well thought out to include lots of different experiences, big cities to small towns, planned activities to free time, nature, art, food, etc, etc! Loved the "extras" (Rome taxi ride, Cinque Terre beach party, local music performances, etc). Everything went off without a hitch. I cannot say enough good things about our tour guide Tim! He was excellent!!! Informative, funny, engaging, patient and hard working! Fantastic experience overall!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose, but as I am bent more toward nature type activities, would say that both the Lauterbrunnen Valley in the Swiss Alps and Cinque Terre were my favorite locations. Hiking in both places was amazing! But Rome and Paris are pretty special too!"

Lindsay

Santa Cruz, CA

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

How can I explain my overall tour experience in just 500 characters? The sights were BEAUTIFUL. Our tour took us through some highlights of each major city we went through. From the Colosseum in Rome to David in Florence, to the Eiffel Tower in Paris. They were as amazing and majestic as I thought they would be, yet weren't my favorite part of the tour. It was the small towns, the local guides and historical insights from our guide Tim that made this trip truly memorable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The entire tour was incredible from every angle, but if I had to nail down one place that made me smile and sing, it would be Switzerland. We took a hike in Lauterbrunnen that started with a gondola up to Murren, a small village about the valley. The amazing alp views from every turn just made me feel so... alive. "leave me in Switzerland!" I told them."

Susan

Troy, OH

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything was great! Tim was a wonderful tour guide who knew lots and was very personable. The places we stayed we quaint and enjoyable. I really liked the uniqueness of them. The food we had was fantastic (unless you lived in a family with a history of one of the countries, in which case it was like eating at home - which was still nice). And of course the sights were amazing with fantastic guides.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really loved Venice and all the beauty of the city. The food, the St. Marks with the battling bands, the mask demonstration. A second would be Rothensburg. I liked the city and shopping, the food, and the tour delivered by the Night watchman."

John

Ellensburg, WA

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great pace; typically information and history lesson on the bus, a tour when arrived at the next city, followed by a challenge (with coaching) to take on the city independently the following day. The approach brought out both an informative introduction to the most historic and interesting places so that nobody could say they did not experience "the best of Europe", and it developed a sense of independence so that everyone had the opportunity to discover the best on their own terms also.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I cannot say there was a single "wow" moment since the tour was cram packed with "wow", but as minor as it might seem, most satisfying for me was to have gotten lost in Venice and to have found the way back, and then catching the wrong train in Paris but being able to just get back into the system and make it work. I get lost easily and frequently, but guide Tim prepared my wife and me very well."

Debra

Ellensburg, WA

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our trip was outstanding. From the moment we arrived in Amsterdam until we left Paris 21 days later, all things were handled. We are very new travelers, first time to Europe, and to have all aspects covered was wonderful. We had enough time riding in a comfortable bus with lots of individual room and just when it was time for a break, we broke. The rest stops were clean and safe. The RS books are very accurate on time spent walking. The walk from train or bus to hotel wasn't bad.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking into the room with The David actually gave me goosebumps. To really see that magnificent statue after hearing from our wonderful guide, Tim, all about it made that moment a WOW..."

Gil

Lake Stevens, WA

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall it was a great experience. We learned a lot and it definitely bolstered our confidence with regard to traveling on our own, which was a big part of why we chose to travel with Rick Steves. I think we saw a lot more and learned a lot more than if we had gone on our own. On the other hand the lack of flexibility was difficult at times. I would have stayed longer in some places and skipped others. Traveling with a pack of people was a new experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"the slaves or prisoner statues in The Hall of Slaves Cinque Terre as a whole. Venice as a whole. The Pietà in St. Peter's Basilica. The Eiffel Tower. David."

Ann

San Ramon, CA

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This opportunity exceeded all of our expectations. We had wanted to get a overview of Europe on this our first trip to highlight those "must see" items. After this trip I can say those boxes have been checked. I was wonderful to have all of the details taken care of yet not feel as though we were in a cookie cutter trip. Loved having experienced/knowledgeable local guides to give an added special touch to the experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Have to pick just one? I really enjoyed the stay in Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland. The cities were great as this is were all of the museums and things are located but loved the valley and outdoor feeling of this area. Likely to be a highlight of our next trip."

Ronald

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very good. A very well organized tour. We stayed on schedule and local tours and tour guides were timely and provided a wealth of insight and knowledge about the things we were seeing. Our tour guide Tim was extremely knowledgeable and always came well prepared. He was tactful in managing the group and with little effort kept us on task and we were rewarded with an excellent experience

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many. Everything was so new to me and therefore many wow moments. Couldn't pick just one. Overall the Alps included the most wow experiences with gondola ride from Wengen and hike to Mannlichen "The Royal Walk" topped things off for me. The entire tour was a wow moment"

Charlene

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded our expectations!!!! It was well organized, everything flowed on schedule, and most importantly we had fun!!!! Each day was a new adventure and just when you thought the experience couldn't be beat, you managed to exceed our expectations again!! We saw so many incredible sites and met some amazing people! The thoughtful extras made the trip even more extraordinary (the visit to Wieskirche church, the yodeling pair, wine tasting in the old wine cellar to name a few!!)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Wieskirche church in Germany, the Lauterbrunnen Valley (gondola ride and hike to the summit of Mannlichen), the walking tour of Bacharach and Night Watchman tour of Rothenburg!! Sorry...there were so many!!!"

Cynthia

Champlin, MN

Tour: 05/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I have never been to Europe, but always on my 'bucket list'. I am so glad that your Best of Europe tour was my introduction to Europe!! From hotels to meals to museums and more, the planning was exquisite! I enjoyed seeing off the beaten track quaint places, knowing that they had been checked out thoroughly by your staff. Loved each and every hotel and meeting the people who ran them. What a treat to not wait in long lines for admission to museums. A wonderful experience!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment was realizing how much history we were learning along with touring the cities of Europe. Tim did a great job giving historical talks on our longer bus rides. Very interesting, and an added bonus that I was not expecting!"

Diane

Eustace, TX

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip to Europe. We enjoyed everything. Touring cities, medieval villages, small hotels, delicious meals, and castles on every hillside! We knew going in that this 21 days would be busy - but we never felt overwhelmed. We had such a great group of new best friends. Stephanie and Richard made this trip. Even a month+ later I still am bragging to anyone who will listen !!! This adventure has given me a whole new happiness.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Haarlem: Liberation Day Festival. Amsterdam: Night Watch, Keukenhof Gardens. Bacharach: Medieval town, Rhine River cruise. Rothenburg: Walking the town wall & Night Watchman. Reutte: getting the bus thru the arch & luge. Venice: Every minute. Florence: I now get the charm of Florence. Rome: Trevi Fountain at midnight & Forum. Cinque Terre: Wow. Stechelberg: Beauty & Gondola. Beaune: attic hotel room. Paris: Where do I start? But the twinkling Eiffel Tower was so memorable."

Joyce

Chino Hills, CA

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

great time on our 1st Europe trip - covered so much. I'm a type A and it was fine for me. But my husband would like it slower - like My Way trips. Lots of history, castles & museums. Bus driver (Richard) & tour guide (Stephanie) were excellent. Tour members were interesting & friendly. Might pick a different month next time - Amsterdam, Venice, Florence, Rome, Paris crowded. Tried exploring side streets & away from crowds. Some amazing buildings and art.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many - especially historical, castles, museums, quaint towns like Rothenburg. But we are nature lovers - camp and outdoors a lot. Switzerland's Alps were amazing. Did a hike up in the high country, lots of waterfalls."

Marc

Seattle, WA

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very good overall experience. Lots of stuff crammed in to 20 days, and a really good introduction to the cities we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michelangelo's David in person. Astounding!"

Richard

Vallejo, CA

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great trip. Great guide. Great group. We had an outstanding mix of folks so there was a great opportunity to chat and share info with each other. Our guide, Stephanie, was phenomenal. She kept us moving, on time and on task. I can't believe she can walk that fast, however!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I'm not really a "wow" moment guy but I have to say some of the views were amazing. I was partial to Italy. Venice was special as was the first view of Cinque Terre!"

Charles

Port Townsend, WA

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My wife is already planning our next Rick Steves trip. She wants to go to London next year. We wouldn't be looking at another Rick Steves tour if we didn't enjoy the 21 day tour. The Rick Steves tour may not work for some travelers but it sure worked for us.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed traveling in the bus. I was amazed at how skillful Richard our bus driver was. The Alps were my Wow moment. The waterfalls and the mountains were so close. The first night in the Alps the sky was clear and it was calm outside. The moon war reflecting off the mountain. It was simply gorgeous and would definitely qualify as a Wow moment."

Larry

Salt Lake City, UT

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was surprised not to be upselled. The accommodations were better than I expected. Best of all, there were tons of extras. Stephanie would often say"I have room in my budget..." for this activity or that extra. She could have kept her mouth shut and come in well under budget, but NO! Life on the road with her was one continuous whirlwind of excitement and motion.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How can you have just one in all of Europe? Even though Stephanie tried to prep us for "David," how could you possibly be ready to see David in person? Then there's gelato. Wow, did that taste good. Every single flavor. I live by the mountains in Utah but the Alps were outstanding. Did people really build those cathedrals in the Middle Ages? And the list goes on!"

Maureen

Salt Lake City, UT

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This experience was even more perfect than I had been hoping for! I was able to see sights and locations that I've been dreaming of seeing for decades. Stephanie and Richard (our bus driver) shared their knowledge and provided explanations that truly brought history to life for me. I loved being in the heart of the cities and being able to walk or take public transportation to so many of the sights as well as to restaurants.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't choose just one! I loved touring Rheinfels Castle, seeing "David" with my own eyes in Florence, the amazing churches and architecture and art in every country, so many boat and gondola experiences, and seeing the Eiffel Tower "sparkle""

Emily

Eugene, OR

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

I have waited to write this for some time thinking maybe my feeling would change. I am sorry but I was quite disappointed with our guide Stephanie. At least, I can say we saw all the famous sites I wanted to see in Europe. And Stephanie did do a good job of sharing information about these famous sites. She just failed to give us much information about the people and counties that we traveled through. We spent so many hours on the bus and she could have taught us so much more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the gardens in Holland!!!!! The tulips and daffodils. So happy it was added to our trip!"

Karen

Littleton, CO

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our experience was very good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many Rotenburg Switzerland Florence Cinque Terrace PARIS!!"

Ronda

Vallejo, CA

Tour: 05/07/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Where to begin. I had been planning and waiting for my first Rick Steves experience for many years.The 21 day best of Europe tour far exceeded my expectations in so many ways. Stephanie our guide and Richard our bus driver were so fun and informative and their passion for what they have been doing for many years is impressive. I can honestly say that there are no negatives to this tour. You are given the opportunity to experience so many highlights in each country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I definitely have more than one, however, a gondola ride on a perfect night in Venice has to be the top of the list."

Brian

Campbell River, BC

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first time to Europe or on a group tour. Our over all experience was well beyond what we expected and we expected to have an amazing trip. Some of the things that impressed us about the trip were the hotels and their location, the tours that were included and the local guides, the quality of the bus and the experience of the driver, the group meals and many other things but the one thing that really made our trip experience amazing was our guide Keith.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many but if I had to pick just one I would have to say Switzerland. I know that is more than a moment but the weather and the time of year were perfect mountains, waterfalls, glaciers and blue sky, I will always remember that day."

Tracy

Florence, AZ

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour gave us everything we asked for and more! Our tour guide was outstanding, our group was great, the countries and sites visited were amazing. We loved every minute of it. What more can I say?

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Oh, should be 'the favorite 'wow' moments'. The waterfalls in the Lauterbrunnen valley--I don't think I've seen anyplace more beautiful; Rembrandt, the bikes and beer in the Netherlands; the Sistine Chapel, Collosseum, Pantheon and the Pieta in Rome; the Castles and city walls in Germany; Venice gondolas and masks and San Marcos square; the David, Botticelli and Il Duomo in Florence; and being in Paris was more amazing than I ever expected! I feel as if I have expanded as a human being. =)"

Heather

St Albert, AB

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour was very interesting and jam packed with sights, and places.The bus was very comfortable, and the group size was good.

Paul

Capitola, CA

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our guide, Keith, was very good. His knowledge was outstanding. He insured that we were all kept informed on our activities and looked out for everyone's well being. I've been on other Rick Steve's Tours. I like the format and enjoy the style. This group of travelers were the best. Had a great time. Love the Heilbroom buses. Don't like where you don't have a bathroom in your room. Was amazed at the number of tourist in the large cities. Looking forward to touring with you again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Schilthorn and Switzerland"

Charles

Littleton, CO

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I cannot say enough about how much Rick Steves travelers get that goes way beyond any trip itinerary! Our guide, Keith, brought our group closely together and made our "family" a memory that will stay connected for many years to come. From the tulips in Holland, the beer garden rest stop in Germany, the hilltop lunch in Italy, the"sexy wine-$15--in Rome, the snacks on the bus, Dirk the bus driver, On and on and on

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Switzerland top of the Alps, 72 waterfalls all around the Lauterbrunnen Valley, Alpine horn serenade,!"

Shaun

Bonney Lake, WA

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the trip of many firsts. We have never been to Europe, nor have we ever been on a Rick Steves tour. Both were intimidating in the beginning, but, in the end, both were welcome experiences. Rick Steves makes it easy to adventure on your own, but my wife and I wanted a guided approach for our first foray into Europe. Our tour guide Keith was outstanding as was our itinerary. We expected a great tour guide in Keith, but we never expected to bond so well with our fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Having never been to Europe before, my wife and I had many "wow" moments. We knew we would be enthralled with the natural beauty in Europe. The Rhein, the Alps, and the Lauterbrunnen Valley were all highlights for us. The "wow" experience I didn't expect was emerging from the train station in full view of the Coliseum."

Ted

Florence, AZ

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It blew our socks off! we saw and did more things then we could have imagined. the tour bus and people were like a family when we finished the trip. all the tour guides were extremely knowledgeable and we were amazed at the quality of hotel choices. i feel i received more "bang for my buck" and feel blessed to have gone on this adventure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"too many to mention but having done the Best of Europe was itself a wow moment."

Nancy

Littleton, CO

Tour: 04/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was fabulous! We enjoyed each hotel and the meals were very good. Our guide Keith, was very knowledgeable with the areas we visited, the history of each area and he would always recommend places to visit or eat on our free time. The bus ride was a time to relax, catch up on sleep, or visit with other tour members.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have many wow moments from this trip only because I've never been to so many countries in Europe, but the big wow was in Switzerland. We had a beautiful sunny day to view the Alps, walk through the towns and experience the cows being moved from pasture to pasture!"

Gina

Slidell, LA

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Went very smooth. Our guide was full of fun stories and the sites were out of this world. I could have done with less museum time but i was in the minority. I prefer outdoor scenery. The food was fantastic and i enjoyed having the restaurants already [INVALID]ed and made simple. It was well planned as we made our way thru public transportation the guide was prepared with all of our public transportation passes and tickets we needed to get into any sites we were seeing that day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Going up the gondola into the alps and it was completely white with clouds and we couldn't see but a few feet in front of us and then the clouds broke and WOW..... i mean wholly crap are we in heaven because we are above the clouds right now staring at pristine snow covered mountain tops."

Brooke

Troy, NY

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the fact that I didn't have to plan out a three week trip to Europe. It was so great to not have to stress about transportation, where to be, how to buy tickets, what to do next, and where to eat. It was all taken care of for us and when we had free time Dimitri made sure to point us in the right direction! We really did get our bang for our buck and packed more into three weeks than I thought would be possible! Every destination had it's own wow moments!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My first wow moment came when I walked through Keukenhof Gardens. I know, it's just tulips, but there was just something so overwhelming about the beauty of it all. I actually had tears in my eyes. Our SNOWY hike over the border from Austria to Germany, around Alp See with breathtaking views of the Alps and Neuschwanstein Castle was another wow! The pure beauty and peacefulness of Switzerland was overwhelmingly amazing (our new favorite country)!Sainte Chapelle's stained glass was breathtaking!"

Adam

Green Island, NY

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was wonderful! All of the details that can easily transform a vacation from relaxing to stressful were exquisitely planned and we basically just sat back and enjoyed the ride. It is truly amazing that we were able to experience so much in only 21 days. Those experiences were enriched throughout the tour by the local guides and their perspectives. The free time seemed to increase at exactly the same pace as our comfort level as the tour progressed. What a great way to travel!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One "wow" moment from our tour occurred on our first morning in Austria. The previous evening, we drove to our hotel in Reutte through dense fog and a (extremely unseasonable) snow storm. As a result, we couldn't see anything and had no idea of our surroundings. The next morning, we woke up to find ourselves surrounded by the snow-covered alps illuminated by the pink glow of the early morning sun. To quote a favorite song, "that's something that just don't happen twice.""

Linda

Slidell, LA

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was every bit as wonderful as I remember from 20 years ago. I wanted my daughter to get the experience and joy I had when I did this trip in 1997. It proved to be everything I enjoyed and more. My daughter felt as if she saw a huge slice of Europe with all its diversity and charm and if she never gets back there will feel as if she has seen the very best Europe has to offer. We absolutely loved our guide and knew he loved sharing his knowledge with us. It was a GREAT trip. Thanks so much.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me probably the Alps in Switzerland since I did not use the gondolas on the last trip. My daughter loved the medival towns and the castle ruins."

Robert

Littleton, CO

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyable and mind-opening at every stop. The care taken to ensure a quality experience is unsurpassed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to single out just one save my impression of the overall experiennce"

Ellen

Littleton, CO

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fabulous! Our exceptionally talented tour guide, Dimitri, made the entire experience sparkle with his knowledge, passion, warmth and humor. (He kept us smiling and laughing the entire three weeks.) Dimitri continually brought history, geography, art, culture and social issues to life. He is a gifted teacher with charisma, but also relates as a genuine, down-to-earth individual. This tour exceeded our expectations in every way and heightens our desire to take more Rick Steves' tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I cannot select one "wow" moment. Each locale offered a smorgasbord of delights. Even the in-between-times, were pleasurable. The few less- than- stellar moments just made for it feeling like a real life experience and not a dream... I do feel my husband and I also really enjoyed the plentiful time offered to go off and explore on our own, finding so much to savor and treasure forever."

Janie

Coeur D'alene, ID

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The entire trip was awesome and professionally guided. I felt safe as our guides took extreme care as to keeping the group together and reassured us that all is well, no problem, no matter how many stupid questions I asked. The spirit of acceptance of others ways, beliefs, cultures was stressed to the group. D was spirited, energetic and supportive in every way to the group. He was full of delightful surprises and came up with great ideas. His ability to improvise when necessary was comendable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The gondola ride in Venice. Also the mediaval ruins in Germany."

Walter

Modesto, CA

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guides and driver. Wow experiences along the way. Enjoyed hikes and walk arounds.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukinoff Gardens, Alps"

Susan

Prescott Valley, AZ

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

This was a trip of a lifetime for my husband and me. It was quite an adventure and a wonderful opportunity to experience different countries in Europe. It certainly broadened our perspective of the world! We loved meeting people during our travels and enjoyed learning about the different cultures. Our experience was dampened somewhat because my husband and I became sick during the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I pretty much loved every day of the trip! The Lauterbrunner Valley and the Schilthorn in Switzerland were breathtaking! It was an amazing experience taking the gondolas and train to the Scilthorn. We had beautiful weather that day and the views were magnificent. We were able to hike in the valley with beautiful waterfalls and classic chalets. We heard the sound of cow bells as the cows grazed along the trail...perfect!"

Garry

Rapid City, SD

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was looking for adventure. I found it with the 25 other travelers. We came three days early and added five days at the end. Our weather was wonderful.Our tour guide Dimitri and his assistant Emilie were knowledgeable thru out the seven countries we visited. We had many laughs, and wonderful experiences. Thanks.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was visiting the Neuschwanstien Castle of King Ludwigs. We woke up to 6 to 8" of new snow. We hiked thru the woods and around the lake to the castle. Everything was covered in snow picture perfect. The second one was in Switzerland in the Lauterbrunnen Valley. 72 waterfalls. Woke up early and meet a girl riding bicycle leading 18 milk cows to the pasture after being milked down the only road.Cinque Terre was wonderful to hike the five fishing villages."

Dan

Sioux Falls, SD

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall the tour was far more than I had expected. The pacing was very brisk yet comfortable (If you adequately prepared) . The things to see and do were numerous and eventful. The schedule was posted the night before so there were no surprises. The overall accommodations, transportation and provided meals were excellent. We will absolutely return for another of Rick's tours!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorite "wow" moment...Very hard to say really as there were many. I will give a few. Biggest surprise was how much we liked Amsterdam. Biggest aw moment was probably the Roman coliseum. Most beautiful area was Cinque terre."

Steven

Saint Paul, MN

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

All the investigation and thought your team put into design and delivery of this experience was super!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to pick just one thing. The Trevi Fountain at night stands out as a surprise."

Jon

Roseville, CA

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour met and exceeded all of my expectations. I had never been to Europe, so the 21 day tour seemed like the perfect fit to see all the highlights Europe has to offer. From start to finish each day offered multiple "wow moments ". The tour was fast paced, lots of walking and climbing stairs, but well worth the energy! Our tour guides ( Demitri and Emily) did a fantastic job helping to make our group comfortable and feeling. Weed for. Their knowledge and expertise was an added benefit!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many Wow Moments to dwindle down to just one....Everyday was filled with Wow moments!"

Damon

Prescott Valley, AZ

Tour: 04/23/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

My overall tour experience was impacted by illness. My wife and I were exposed to a virus at the onset of the tour. Eventually, we both needed antibiotics to get healthy. The rigors of this tour and the poor sleeping conditions most nights kept us from recovering without medical assistance, in our opinions. My overall rating of the tour experience most certainly would have been higher had I been healthy throughout the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Viewing the mountain peaks in Switzerland while standing above the clouds was amazing. The gondola and train rides to the top of the Schilthorn added to the excitement of this experience."

Cami

Provincetown, MA

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the trip very much. Left me wanting to see more in many of the places we visited[INVALID]perfect! It was a wonderful group of positive people and Daniela was wonderful. Just the right mix of tour guide and fellow traveler. Her passion for the history and art of the regions was infectious!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I always feel 'at home' when we visit Bavaria. Just love it there. But as always, my "wow" moment is the camaraderie of the group and our fearless leader."

Rachel

Danville, IL

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As we learned the Romans would say, the tour was "awesome." Daniela and Richard both made the 3 weeks run as wonderfully as possible. Rain or shine, traffic jam or smooth sailing Daniela ensured that the group members did not have to stress about anything. I am thankful for the amount of information Daniela was able to provide because that enhanced my Europe experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Although Francesa was not our Rick Steves' tour guide, my "wow" moment was with Francesa on our Roman Ruins tour. I was having an issue with not having a "magical experience" while on the tour and I felt guilty for it. Between Francesa and Daniela, I have been able to get rid of my "museum guilt" and truly enjoy my travels. I suggest Francesa to every tour possible!!"

Rebecca

Pomona, CA

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip was an exceptional experience! I'd never been to Europe and this tour was better than I ever imagined. We had a wonderful, caring, knowledgeable guide in Daniela. From transportation to accommodations, everything was well done.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens was spectacular and one reason we chose this tour. Venice, the Roman ruins, the Swiss Alps, the Eiffel Tour, so many amazing things."

Robert

Pomona, CA

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Terrific! This was a well-organized tour with a compatible group of interesting people and an outstanding guide. We got college-quality orientation lectures in advance of each city visit that included history, culture, current issues and events and important sites to visit, either with the group or on our own in free time; excellent local guides as well. We had lots of time to do what we pleased and no pressure to do anything outside of the tour agenda.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every city visit included a candidate for this award. My top vote goes to ancient Rome: the Colleseum, Forum, Pantheon, et al."

Phyllis

Canal Winchester, OH

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was all and more of what I expected it to be.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Dachau Memorial was the most emotional and "in your face" moment for me....very touching and real moment."

Carley

Westville, IL

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was amazing!!! Every corner we turned, I was in awe of something. Learning the different languages and cultures was a rewarding challenge. Looking at art and, with the help of a wonderful guide, being able to see the story behind it all was such a riviting experience. I recommend this trip to every single person I encounter. It was truly life changing. Travel is such a blessing!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was seeing Rome. I can't count the times that I said "ooo" or "ahhh" while marveling at ancient roman ruins. It's something you aren't able to explain to another person because you want them to see it for themselves. Rome as a whole is truly a magical place."

Roger

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the organized fast pace. At times I was tired but I really liked not wasting time. only regret I didn't have more energy to do more! Our guide Daniela was outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite was being in the Lauterbrunnen Valley, Switzerland right where we had been 35 years ago, and when on top of the Schilthorn we could see the pass we had walked over including the unique double barn we had walked by so many years ago. Wonderful experience."

Ed

Dunwoody, GA

Tour: 04/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Exceptional!! Had a great time, met some very terrific people and even ran into Rick at a restaurant in Rome. The pace was quick but acceptable and enjoyed every single moment. Hotels were terrific!! In Venice we walk down a side street, arrive at a door and there is the hotel. Unlike anything I have ever seen. The uniqueness of Europe is a amazing. From the beauty of the Alps and canals of Venice to the sobering landscape of Dachau, I was completely blown away.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was only a single hour, but the visit to the mask maker in Venice was my WOW moment. The skill and artistry of the man was to me one of the most captivating moments of the tour. In the age of manufacturing and plastic here is a man who uses paper mache' and age old skills to produce his art!!"

Jane

Olsburg, KS

Tour: 10/02/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I am not usually a "tour person" as I have been setting my own way for 65 years! But, with the language barrier and our usual uncanny ability to get lost in the worst part of town, we thought a tour would be best. And it was!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was in Europe, 3 of the countries, in 1975 to study. So, the grandeur, the oldness, the non spaciousness of everything, wasn't it. It was the way it was presented by Keith, starting from the first hour we all spent together getting every ones back ground. He made us feel comfortable. He molded us with his easy lessons of history, economics, sociology( always hated school but enjoyed his talks)language and manner lessons. He watched over us. Through Keith we became family."

Eric

Olsburg, KS

Tour: 10/02/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour completely fulfilled my every expectation and a whole lot more! Keith, our guide, made all of us feel like family members from the opening day of the tour. He encouraged us to experience everything we could, with in-depth lessons on history, art, architecture and culture of the area we would travel to next. I never felt unprepared to tackle the great cities of Europe or the least bump in the road. I had to pinch myself quite a few times to realize that I finally made it to Europe!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really believe the whole tour from beginning to end! There was never a moment that I didn't thoroughly enjoy and was glad that I had been there and experienced all that we were seeing. I had dreamt of going to Europe for many years and this tour allowed me to get the most out of the 21 days. There isn't a better way to see what we were able to see and experience."

Jo Ann

Spring Valley, CA

Tour: 10/02/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

21 Days in Europe just scratched the surface!The tour exceeded our expectations and was worth the expense. I have learned so much about the various regions. I am amazed how much we walked each day. The optional hikes, gondola (Venice and Swiss Alps) were a bonus not to be missed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Impossible to chose just one, as every single day provided a WOW moment which superseded the WOW moment of the day before. If you force me to choose, it would have to be the glory of ancient Rome: the Pantheon, Colosseum, Palatine Hill and the Forum. However, ending our tour in Paris was exceptional. WOW to standing beneath the sparkling, twinkling Eiffel Tower where our group celebrated another tour member's birthday. In fact, our group repeated the experience our final night."

Sean

Clovis, CA

Tour: 10/02/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was absolutely amazing. It was fun from day 1. We saw and experienced once in a lifetime things on every single day. I thought that the last city was my favorite until we got to the next city which would then become my new favorite. We were able to enjoy the experience without figuring out travel plans, buying tickets, driving, etc. It was so planned out well. There was also enough free time that we were able to explore on our own or just relax some and take it a bit slower.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking around Rome at night as Keith our tour guide led us from one gorgeous lit up site to another. The walk was not a scheduled event, but just something Keith did after dinner. That is what sets this tour above others. The fountains, sculptures and old Roman buildings were so beautiful at night as Keith told us about each one. So romantic and amazing!"

Cheryl

Littleton, NH

Tour: 10/02/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We enjoyed this tour immensely. It was exactly as described on the Rick Steves website. Not only was it lots of fun, we learned so much about all the different places we visited. It was a perfect mix of free time, fun and learning. Our guide (Keith) and driver (Matt) were excellent and made the tour a "trip of a lifetime" for us. Keith even threw in a few nice "surprises" for us along the way! Awesome!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Everywhere we stopped, we said "Wow!!" Loved all the small towns we visited. Our favorite cities were Venice and Paris."

Rose

Rio Rancho, NM

Tour: 10/02/16

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was a good way to see the main attractions and a few things you never even thought about. We made a family unit out of the tour members and I believe I have made some friends for life.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think it was the Rodin museum. I could have sat in the garden for the rest of the afternoon but it rained and there was a lot more to see in the city."

David

Fort Myers, FL

Tour: 10/02/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I are travelers, but have never taken a tour. The Best of Europe in 21 Days exceeded our expectations. The destinations, hotels, guides, and surprises made for an exceptional trip. We got the distinct impression that the tour was more about our having a quality educational, fun, and authentic journey than it was about the company's bottom line. Our tour guide, Keith, had much to do with this positive experience. We highly recommend the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many, but certainly the gondola ride to the Schilthorn stands out even though it was cloudy and rainy."

Linda

Sheldonville, MA

Tour: 09/27/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

From a singles perspective and first time RS traveller this trip was incredible! Every day was a new adventure and provided plenty of cultural and historic experiences. There were days of free time and having a guide showing you around beforehand helped ease the fear of getting lost. I was lucky to have a great group of fellow travelers that helped me find my way around! We experienced music, food, drink and history from each country with the help of our awesome tour guide Jesse!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The sights and sounds from the cowbells ringing in the Alps to the roar of the singers at Octoberfest to the Colosseum and Trevi Fountain in Rome were all WOW moments but the one that stands out the most was the night bus tour in Paris... getting off the bus and walking to see the Eiffel Tower with a full moon off to the left certainly gave me chills. WOW...could not of planned it better!"

Felicity

Allen, TX

Tour: 09/27/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful, well-organized and executed - a great way to visit many countries/cities in limited time. Good balance between tour events and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Surprise visit to Oktoberfest in Munich that was not on the schedule - fantastic fun experience in the beer hall, singing, dancing, eating and quaffing beer! Wine tasting in the cellar of Hotel des Remparts in Beaune. Very special event. Also, the Paris after dark tour including illuminated Eiffel Tower and a full moon."

Mike

Bakersfield, CA

Tour: 09/27/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderfully small group ages 20 to 80 that meshed very well. All of the guides, tour and local, were outstanding and really knew there subject matter. Traveling on this RST was very time efficient and we saw much more than if we had been on our own. This tour is for people who are relatively fit and you MUST be mobile. There are a LOT of stairs to climb, in hotels and on tours, especially in the big churches. I estimate several thousand over the duration of the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Upon reflection, it was not a single moment. It was the feeling I got from walking in the old city areas with their very narrow and cobblestone streets. Feeling like I was living in these cities hundreds of years ago helped me feel "connected" to that time. This was especially true at night walking back to our hotels or wandering the often deserted streets. Sights, sounds and smells helped whisk me back centuries. That was my real WOW!"

Jan

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/27/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fabulous!! Enjoyed having a small group (16). Especially enjoyed the local guides sharing their experience. Good balance of structured and "free" time. Appreciated our guide's suggestions about meals and willingness to meet individual needs. Loved that he was able to organize optional activities like the gondola ride and tramway to the top of the Schilthorn. Our hostess in Austria was so personable and organized other options for our "free" afternoon that we wouldn't have done without her.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Apparently our bus driver took a more scenic route as we headed toward Switzerland. Jesse put on some classical music as we enjoyed the amazing scenery - it brought me almost to tears."

Ronald

Allen, TX

Tour: 09/27/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great travel experience! Would recommend it to anyone going on their first tour ...or... those who have been on several tours!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to even think about. Each stop along what way gave me a wow! moment. The "wows" started in Amsterdam and ended in Paris!!"

Suzanne

Ferndale, MI

Tour: 09/27/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My experiences during my second 21 days Best of Europe tour far exceeded my first tour, which was outstanding! The tour group members were witty and full of good humor. We laughed and enjoyed each other's company the entire trip. Our tour guide, Jesse, was exceptional in motivating, teaching, and opening our eyes to new and wonderful experiences. Jesse read folk stories, played music from the region, gave us history lessons and tought us basic words in multiple foreign languages.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our bus driver, Ben, was competent and his hands steady as we drove along Sussen pass in the Alps. It was thrilling! Every twist in the road brought with it amazing views of glaciers, valleys, and snow covered mountain tops peeking through the clouds."

Ed

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/27/16

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The best overall comment I could make is the excellence of the local guides. The local guide helped make each place come alive, with their insights into culture, and knowledge of the arts and the people. The food was fun if you try dishes that are out of the ordinary, I never had a bad meal. I enjoyed our tour guide Jesse, he was great at sharing his experiences in each location, and was helpful with questions and directions. He also encouraged us to explore, giving me a fuller experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the top of Schilthorn in the Swiss Alps, the mountains are marvelous and the revolving restaurant has a wonderful view."

Julia

Redondo Beach, CA

Tour: 09/25/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was outstanding - your company was so professional from the moment I signed up. A few of the hotels were questionable????? Maybe an extra night here & there just to catch up - it was go, go, go the whole 21 days! When you are that close to Munich & not include Oktoberfest it is a shame! We did get to go because our guide made it happen - I know half the bus marked it off their bucket list :-)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Eiffel Tower at night! Being that close to Oktoberfest & our guide made it happen. Seeing the statue David!"

Kathy

Urbandale, IA

Tour: 09/25/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first time in Europe, so I was mentally on board with whatever adventures came my way. And did we have them! Wonderful! Visiting every one of the 6 countries on the tour was like opening a present. Our guides did an incredible job preparing us for each country, sharing historical, political, and geographic information which helped us make valuable connections with the culture of each. The tour was exactly as described in the promo material and more!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially loved the quaint, sleepy little German villages we visited. Strolling through their cobblestone streets at night was like something right out of a fairy tale. Walking into the Pantheon absolutely took my breath away. I was reduced to tears at its majesty and the miracle of its construction. Having the opportunity to view some of the world's most incredible art treasures was also a dream come true."

Ruma

Foresthill, CA

Tour: 09/25/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

While we expected this tour to be an active adventure, we were not expecting that we would learn so much about European history, art, cultures, and social structures. We were immensely impressed by the wealth of knowledge of our guide, Yorick. We looked forward to the times he picked up the mike and shared the history of each region, his compare and contrast commentaries, books to read, and personal experiences of his well-traveled self.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Everyone asks us this question. Our "wow" was waking up every morning with the expectation of a new day in a new region or country and the excitement of the unknown and unexpected sights, people, food, and fun!"

Vivian

Raleigh, NC

Tour: 09/25/16

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Seeing as many countries/cities as I saw in 21 days was well worth the tour's quick pace. I am glad I took this tour at age 70, instead of waiting. I'm not sure I could keep up with the pace later. I do understand the necessity for the quick pace, and I wouldn't have it any other way, except for 3 and 1/2 hours without a potty break (not good) and from 7:00 a.m. breakfast until 2:45 when we finally were able to order lunch, and got it around 3:00. Eight hours, no food,(not good)! (See #16)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Unexpectedly I "teared" up leaving the Swiss Alps. It must have been the hike from our hotel to Lauterbrunnen, cow bell symphonies, sheep grazing in bright green pastures, colorful flowers in every chalet window box, jaw dropping mountains that disappeared into the clouds and so many waterfalls! (Is this heaven?) I couldn't get enough. The Alp horn and yodeling demonstration were interesting too."

Gregory

Sun Valley, ID

Tour: 09/25/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As you are aware, we postponed this long anticipated tour for 6 months following the terror events in Paris and Belgium. We started off with some hesitation as a result of this, but quickly gained confidence and comfort, primarily based on Yorick's leadership and the very professional, yet easy-going way he and Jody introduced and conducted the tour. Overall, the 21 Day Tour exceeded ALL our expectations and was OUTSTANDING!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"While the history and beauty of the ancient world with it's ruins, museums and churches was incredible (if not overwhelming!), the true WOW moment for me was finally standing in the Swiss Alps, specifically in Murren and taking in the truly spectacular scenery. We are mountain people, but the stark differences between the lush, high mountain villages of Switzerland and our more dry, readily accessible western mountain towns was stunning! We will go back!!!!!"

Robert

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The planning for the travel was very good. There were not any unwanted surprises. Our tour guide was on top of every event and had the answers to questions many times before they were ask. The surprises were wonderful and enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was a WOW moment every day. The most outstanding day for me was Rome and the colosseum."

Connie

Newport Beach, CA

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I loved this trip...packed everything in for a snapshot experience of cities & countries. I didn't give it an outstanding rating because I felt a few of the hotels were lacking in cleanliness. Our hotel in Haarlem was in a perfect location, but the shower was moldy, and the carpeting had many spots. Hallway walls dirty. In Switzerland the bath linens looked like rags. Great job on hotel locations, but felt quality could go up a notch. In Baccarat, my friend's bathroom was uncomfortably small.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Glaciers in Switzerland as a backdrop to our hotel."

Harold

Cleburne, TX

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the toughest physical tour we have done. The opportunities justified the effort. We saw what we were hoping for. The Vatican was great with help from Colleen as a side trip. The weather was fantastic.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was looking to complete my understanding the time lines of history with this tour. Colleen's expertise and the routing of the trip kept the time line sort of intact but well enough to help understand the history. Seeing the places of history is a WOW for me."

Connie

Cleburne, TX

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the whole experience. The countries, the sights, the group were all the best.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Switzerland for me. The green pastures going up the mountain for me was picture perfect."

Linda

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my very first trip to Europe. I was thrilled to go and so pleased with the RS tour experience. Such a 'well-oiled' machine. Small villages to large cities, group time and free time, hotels with charm and character and wonderful restaurants. There was no time wasted so we were able to 'maximize' our time in Europe. So well done. And once the orientation to each city was complete I really did feel comfortable navigating through city centers and metro stations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Oh my, there were so many. We had crystal clear blue sky days in Switzerland. Taking the gondolas and hiking through the villages was absolutely incredible. Loved every bit of it. Also fell in love with Paris. The Eiffel tower at night at the end of our city bus tour was fabulous."

Jean

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

One word...fabulous! We learned so much. Plus, we saw things we never would have sought out on our own. Learning how to navigate around all the different cities was also a big surprise. I never realized how much it added to the experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" was Paris at night! It's such a beautiful city and driving around and seeing the lights of the city was wonderful. My husband's "wow" was Switzerland. Such a beautiful country, and the mountains!"

Paul

Oakland, CA

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent introduction to Europe. We traveled fast and covered a lot of ground.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Pantheon in Rome. 2000 years ago!! Unbelievable."

Cynthia

Johnstown, CO

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything was well planned. Every day was packed full of amazing places to see. Every detail was taken care of. The best way to explore!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Almost impossible to have a favorite "wow" moment because every day was something new and exciting. Celebrating our 35th anniversary at the top of the Eiffel Tower with champagne was one of the most memorable moments! The artwork, architecture and history of every place we toured was a "wow" every day!"

Tommy

Johnstown, CO

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our tour guide (Coleen) did an excellent job of keeping things organized and on track as well as throwing in a few treats and surprises, and was very helpful with information about things to do, places to eat, and where to go on our own during our free times. Our driver "Peter" did a great job handling the bus, loading and unloading luggage, getting us as close as possible to our destination, and keeping a supply of cold drinks available for us on the bus as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many "wow" moments to choose just one!"

Aric

Tigard, OR

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour was excellent. It was an intense 21 day History lesson. As a first trip to Europe it was very eye opening to see the actual buildings and lands where history was made/lived out. It has created a desire for additional trips. The pace was quick but not overly aggressive. I was VERY Surprised we had logged over 3000 road miles on this tour. The bus portion was actual an excellent part of the trip. It gave tour members time to converse and get to know one another in "down" time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our evening/night walking tour in Rome. Seeing trevi fountain and actually getting up close was amazing. The next day we had free time and my wife and I went back to look again. This time at approx 4 pm. When we arrived there was NO WAY to get even close to the fountain there were so many people. It was then it dawned on me why we went at night, view was good, alot fewer people. WOW moment was realization of the planning the Rick Steves group puts into evey detail of the tours."

Melody

Tigard, OR

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fantastic, strenuous, but well organized, and so much fun. The history lessons we received from all the local guides and especially our own guide Colleen S. about each area were well presented and enjoyable. The bus driver (Peter) drove through some of the busiest and tightest places but the ride was so smooth my husband and I were so relaxed the whole trip. We will definately look into other Rick Steve's tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't have a favorite because there were so many to choose from."

Sandra

Richland, WA

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was beyond expectations! This was my first time to Europe and I couldn't have picked a better tour or experience. We had a great group of people that we were traveling with, who became like family. Colleen, our guide was very knowledgeable, historical, kept us going daily without complications, and most of all fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Switzerland.........the countryside, the hotel, the food and entertainment!"

Michael

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/18/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, I remember having multiple new adventures and learning experiences on every day of the tour. Besides having fun and thanks to Coleen and the guides, we learned much about history, and how it relates to art and architecture. More than that each one of us gained 20+ new friends to share this with. That was the best part.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't know which was the best. My favorites were the Neuschwanstein castle, crossing the suspension bridge (it was shaky and scary), Cinque Tierre, and the waking by the cows and goats in Switzerland."

Mary

Floyds Knobs, IN

Tour: 09/15/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I've never been on a tour. Beginning with the Lisa and John show on the coach, to the chemistry of the group, the lovely hotels and meals-the overall experience exceeded my expectations!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I've never traveled to Europe, so everyday was a WOW for me. From the BIG moments like seeing the Eiffel Tower's "dancing lights" and the Pantheon, Colusseum,etc to some of the more subtle sights and sounds--hearing the cow bells sing, the Accordian players, the warm water of the Mediterranean Sea,the taste of pumpkin ravioli and the delicious wines.Maybe one of the most surprising moments for me, was on the steps in Cinque terra. I'm dying of thirst and on the trail is a local, juicing oranges!"

Terri

Truckee, CA

Tour: 09/15/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was absolutely incredible. We were very busy from early morning until late evening but the amount of things we were able to see was amazing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments on the tour but Michelangelo's David took my breath away. Of course, Switzerland was so beautiful it didn't look real with rolling green fields, waterfalls and cows walking down the street ringing their cow bells!"

Kathleen

Lake Forest Park, WA

Tour: 09/15/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the entire tour from start to finish. The fast pace appealed to me and was the reason we were able to see so much in 21 days. My husband and I are still saying to each other, "Do you remember...". We feel the trip has given us skills we can apply to our own independent trip back to Europe. Everything flowed together well and the group seemed to go with the flow.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to limit "wow" moments to just one. But the first was immediately in Amsterdam. We are bicyclists, and were stunned by the bicycle culture in Amsterdam. All the bicycles blew my mind. Next the gorgeous rococo church in the meadows in Germany was amazing. The Lauterbrunnen Valley is the place I'd love to return to and stay forever."

Stanley

Santa Rosa, CA

Tour: 09/15/16

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Excellent survey of Western Europe. Great exposure to many very famous places along with exposure to locals, enabling one to get a good idea of how the locals live. Not for the faint of heart! You are constantly on the go with very little down time. By the end, many things are a blur. Take lots of pictures and if possible keep a bit of a diary.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Octoberfest. Not part of the itinerary. On a free afternoon in Austria, tour guide and bus driver went way out of their way to make a visit to Munich possible. Too many other wow moments to mention as the 21 days were just an endless series of wows."

James

Lake Forest Park, WA

Tour: 09/15/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was just chock full of fun stuff. The castle tours, ancient sites, war memorials, museums, and general sights were all very interesting and at times overwhelming. It is very hard to be totally prepared for the exposure to new cultures, art and architecture; if one is not a student of history and the arts. Overall...this was a great experience and I'd recommend it anyone (in good enough physical condition to handle all the standing and walking). Food and accommodations were excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There seemed to be an unlimited supply of "wow"!!! I was very impressed with the mountains and countryside in Switzerland...This was probably 10.0 on the wow factor. But 9.9 was the Louvre, and the Vatican...oh yea and the David's! I was impressed with the friendliness of the people we met in the various villages and cities. Our tour group was "THE BEST" (as is our fearless leader)!!!"

Diane

Puyallup, WA

Tour: 09/15/16

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My overall experience was amazing! I experienced more than I imagined, and was blown away by the quantity and quality of all our activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the castles and churches was awe inspiring. I had so many jaw-dropping moments walking into each one. I think I have a tie for the most "WOW" moment that made my jaw drop upon first sight. It is between King Ludwig's castle, and Notre Dame. Both are overwhelmingly stunning."

Weather

Netherlands / Amsterdam

Amsterdam Weather


Germany / Munich

Munich Weather


Austria / Vienna

Vienna Weather


Italy / Venice

Venice Weather


Italy / Florence

Florence Weather


Italy / Rome

Rome Weather


Switzerland / Bern

Bern Weather


France / Paris

Paris Weather

Pre-Tour Planning

We've put together some specific information on what you should know about this tour before you go. You'll also find more general information about "Getting Ready for Your Tour" on our Tour FAQ.

Trip Resources

Learn more about the Netherlands, France, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, and Italy: Check out a collection of Rick's TV shows, radio interviews, and articles, plus recommended books and movies.

Tour Hotels

In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is included in your tour confirmation email. About one month prior to the tour departure, we'll email you directions on how to get from the airport to your first tour hotel, as well as the complete list of hotels where we'll be staying while on tour.

Transportation

Many tour members arrive a day or two before the tour begins — and those who don't, wish they had. This allows you ample time to get over jet lag and make the most of the first few days of the tour.

There is more than one way to get to and from your tour. Most tour members arrange to fly into Amsterdam and out of Paris ("multicity" on flight-booking websites). Booking round-trip to one city will require a connecting flight, train trip, or additional overnight stay in Europe.

For information about flying within Europe, ask your travel agent or check Rick's list of European budget airlines.

Read Rick's train travel and rail pass tips to decide if your travel plans merit a rail pass.

If you plan to continue traveling in Europe after the tour, we strongly recommend you book transportation and hotels before the tour begins.

If you have additional European travel or tour questions, contact the Tour Department at 425-608-4217 or email tour@ricksteves.com.

Sightseeing on Your Own

If you arrive in Haarlem or Amsterdam before your tour begins, use the Rick Steves Best of Europe guidebook to get oriented. Ride the public transportation, try out a few words of Dutch (although most locals speak very good English), and get over your jet lag with lots of fresh air and exercise. Take advantage of the flat terrain and rent a bike in Haarlem!

Here are a few suggestions for sightseeing in Haarlem and Amsterdam that we will not do as a group. Haarlem: Frans Hals Museum, canal cruise, Teylers Museum, Corrie Ten Boom House, Grote Kerk (main church). Amsterdam: Anne Frank House (reserve in advance), Van Gogh Museum (reserve in advance), Amsterdam Museum, Jewish History Museum, Dutch Resistance Museum, Tropical Museum, Heineken brewery tour.

There is plenty to keep you busy with extra time in Paris. We suggest visiting the Orsay or Orangerie Museums for great Impressionist art. If modern art is your thing, you can't miss the Pompidou Center. Feeling museum-ed out? Then explore great neighborhoods of the Marais, St. Germain, or Montmartre. Spend some time in one of Paris' people-friendly parks like the Luxembourg or Tuileries Gardens or hop on a boat and take a tour of the River Seine.

This tour does not include a visit to the Eiffel Tower. However it is often a highlight for any traveler, and one we highly recommend. Avoid the lines by booking tickets several weeks in advance. For more details, see our Eiffel Tower ticket tips for tour members.

Packing

There are some great opportunities for hikes in Italy's Cinque Terre and the Swiss Alps. While hiking boots are not necessary, we recommend you bring a pair of sturdy walking shoes offering good traction. Also, if swimming interests you, bring along a swimsuit and perhaps a lightweight microfiber towel, as we'll have a couple of opportunities to get wet.

For more advice on what (and what not!) to pack, see Rick's packing tips.

Special packing note: We use an audioguide system for many of our sightseeing and museum tours. If you wear a hearing aid, we strongly recommend bringing headphones that go over your ears to allow you to fully enjoy these tours.