The Ultimate Baltics
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Explore the highlights of six countries on ajourney through the Baltics from Poland to Finland. Discover historic cities and ancient castles, stunning scenery and a majestic Baroque palace.
DAY 1 UK – WARSAW
Fly to Warsaw, the capital ofPoland. On arrival, we’ll transfer to our hotel and get to know one another better over a welcome drink before atraditional Polishdinner.
DAY 2 WARSAW
Today we’ll discover the best of Warsaw, on a sightseeing tour. Highlights include Castle Square, which fronts the Royal Castle and is home to Sigismund’s Column the city’s most famous landmark. We’ll also see St John’s Cathedral, said to be the oldest church in the city and stroll through Market Square, which is surrounded by tall attractive houses.
DAY 3 WARSAW – BREST
We’re going to cross the border into Belarus andexplore thecity of Bresttoday. This charming, cosmopolitan city bears symbols of Soviet resistanceduringWorld War Two and we’ll explore several of them, including the Brest Hero-fortress. Built in the first half ofthe 19th century, Soviet soldiers garrisoned inside the fortress held outas Nazi forcestook control of the city during the war. Today, the fortress complex includes a museum, thebullet-riddled Kholmsky Gate and a large monument, the Thirst, which depictsa parched soldier trying to drink from a river.
DAY 4 BREST – LIDA – VILNIUS
As we make our way to Lithuania, we’ll stop at the smallcity of Lida in Belarus and explore its highlights. We’ll then visit a brewery to see how traditional beer is madeand may even have a chance to chew malt and hops before enjoying atasting ofthe finished product.
DAY 5 VILNIUS
Lithuania’s capital Vilniusis a charming and beautiful city and we’ll see its highlights on a sightseeing tour today. The UNESCO-listed Old Town is home to a maze of narrow streets and a wealth of historic buildings. We’ll pass Vilnius Cathedral thatlies at the city centre, as well asSt Anna’s Church a Gothic masterpiece, St Peter and Paul’s Church and the ruins of the Upper and Lower Castle.
DAY 6 SAULIAI – RUNDALE PALACE – RIGA
This morning we’ll travel to Sauliai and visit the remarkable Hill of Crosses, a pilgrimage site where hundreds of crosses are planted as memorials and in devotion to Christianity.
DAY 7 RIGA
Enjoy a morning tour of the medieval town of Riga to discover sights such as Riga Castle and the guild houses. We’ll also step inside the Dome Cathedral, which boasts one of the world’s largest pipe organs and enjoy a concert of organ music.
Later, we visit the impressive central market, the largest in Europe, which is hosted in Zeppelin hangars abandoned by the German army. There are several pavilions, each selling different types of food. Staying at the market, we’ll enjoy a light lunch of local specialities, including marinated vegetables, smoked fish and meat. The rest of the day has been left free for you to make your own discoveries.
DAY 8 TURAIDA MUSEUM RESERVE & SIGULDA
Our journey continues after breakfast when we head to Tallinn in Estonia.On the way, we’ll stop atthe Lgatne Soviet Bunker. Built nine metres below ground during the Cold War, it was intended to be a secret hiding place for elite members of the Communist Party in the event of a nuclear war.Our next stop is at Turaida Museum Reserve, an area rich in monuments of historical interest. Visit the church and the delightful Folk Song Garden, before we head to the picturesque town of Sigulda, situated in the Gauja National Park.On arrival in Tallinn,we’ll check into our hotel for a two-night stay.
DAY 9 TALLINN
Tallinn is a picturesque old city, where whole districts date back to the Middle Ages. On today’s city tour we’ll explore the Old Town with its quaint narrow streets and gothic-styled merchants’ houses. We’ll see Toompea Castle and the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of Alexander Nevsky, as well as the 15th century Town Hall.
This evening, we’ll gather as a group and enjoy a special dinner in a medieval restaurant in Tallinn, Olde Hansa. This authentic restaurant boasts a traditional interior and staff dress up in traditional dress – this is as close as you’ll get to going back in time! Enjoy a host of medieval dishes made from freshly sourced produce and flavoured with herbs and spices that came to Estonia by way of the Hanseatic League’s trade routes from the Far East.
DAY 10 TALLINN – HELSINKI
We will travel to Finland by ferry and explore the historical centre of Helsinki this afternoon. Highlights include Senate Square, the Presidential Palace and the Parliament building. If possible, we’ll also visit the Temppeliaukio Church, carved into solid rock and crownedwith a copper dome.
DAY 11 HELSINKI – UK
After breakfast, we’ll transfer to the airportfor our flight back to the UK.