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Augustinian Monastery, Erfurt
St. Mary\'s Church, Wittenberg
Rhine River Cruise
You are invited to join Rev. Jeffrey Stuckwisch and members of Zion Lutheran Church, on a 12 day tour to Germany. We will learn about Luther’s life and ministry as we visit key Lutheran sites including Erfurt, Eisenach, Wittenberg and Eisleben. Music lovers will enjoy the Bach Motet concert in Leipzig and the Bach House in Eisenach. The highlight of the tour will be our visit to Venne, where many of our ancestors came from. We will hear more about their voyage to America at the Bremerhaven Emigration Museum. The tour also includes a Rhine-cruise, castles, palaces, gardens, a folk museum, and delicious German meals.
We look forward to welcoming you on the tour!
Please note this itinerary is copyrighted.
Key: IF = In Flight Meals, B= Breakfast, D = Dinner
Day 1: Monday May 30, 2016: Departure from the USA
Our journey to explore the sites and heroes of the Reformation begins with an overnight flight to Frankfurt. (IF)
Day 2: Tuesday May 31, 2016: Worms, Rothenburg
Our tour guide Uli will meet us as we step out of the arrival hall at Frankfurt Airport and escort us to our comfortable motor coach. Our first destination is the city of Worms where Luther appeared in front of the emperor and was asked to recant just about everything he had ever taught, and stood for. Of course he didn’t, as you know, and the dramatic phase of the Reformation began. We will walk through the majestic Romanesque cathedral and then take photos by the biggest Luther monument in the world. We will dine in our hotel near Rothenburg-ob-der-Tauber. (IF/D)
Day 3: Wednesday June 1, 2016: Rothenburg, Erfurt
This morning is devoted to the wonderful city of Rothenburg. We will begin with a walk along the city wall. Inside St. Jacob’s church we will see the famous carved “Holy Blood Altar” by Tilman Riemenschneider. We will continue through the lower town gate into the area where the castle once stood. The rest of the morning is at leisure to relax, browse stores like Käthe Wohlfahrt’s year-round Christmas store, or visit the local history museum, which includes the oldest kitchen in Europe. We will depart mid-afternoon and drive to Erfurt, where we will stay for two nights. (B/D)
Day 4: Thursday June 2, 2016: Erfurt, Wartburg Castle
We will start the day in Erfurt, where Luther studied law at one of the oldest German universities. After his “thunderstorm experience”, he swore to totally change his life, and entered the monastery. While we are touring the Augustinian Monastery, we will see the “Luther Cell” and hear about Luther celebrating his first mass. We will also have a devotional time in the chapel as a group. In the afternoon we will travel to nearby Eisenach. In 1521, while fleeing from the wrath of the Pope, Luther took refuge in the Wartburg Castle after a fake kidnapping staged by his friend and protector, Frederick the Wise. This medieval castle is where Luther finished translating the New Testament into German in just 11 weeks. He had spent time in the nearby town of Eisenach as a school boy and sang in the choir of St. George’s Church, where the Bach family also worshiped. We will have time in the late afternoon to tour the Bach House, then the bus will take us back to Erfurt. (B)
Day 5: Friday June 3, 2016: Eisleben, Leipzig
This morning we will continue to the little city of Eisleben, which is sometimes referred to as Luther’s Bethlehem and Jerusalem. Our first port of call will be the house where little Martin was born on November 10, 1483. The next day he was baptized in the nearby church of St. Petri-Pauli. This old gothic church has currently been beautifully restored to celebrate baptism as a Christian institution, in view of the big Luther celebrations in 2017. By some strange twist of fate Martin returned to Eisleben as an old man, his purpose being to settle a dispute within the ruling family of the area. After three weeks he finally succeeded, but sadly one day later, on February 18, 1546, he died. We will visit the museum devoted to his memory and take a look around the church where he gave his last sermon.
In the early afternoon we will check into our hotel near Leipzig. Uli will take us into Leipzig this evening. Luther was here more than once, but Leipzig is really the town of Johann Sebastian Bach. He served as cantor in St. Thomas Church for 27 years and we will attend the weekly Friday motet at 6 PM. While in Leipzig we will also tour St. Nicholas’ Church and hear how the congregation was instrumental in the events that led to the collapse of the East German state in 1989, We will also admire the beautiful old city hall, which houses Katharina von Luther’s original wedding ring. We will dine at a special restaurant then return to our hotel. (B/D)
Day 6: Saturday June 4, 2016: Wittenberg, Berlin
After a short drive, we will arrive in Lutherstadt-Wittenberg and meet our local guide, who will show us around the Town Church (St. Marien) where Luther and his family attended, together with pretty much everyone else in town, where he got married, where his children were baptized, and where he preached many sermons. Our walk continues past the old university building and Philip Melanchthon’s house to the Luther house with its unique collection, featuring two rooms that – quite amazingly – are still exactly in the state when the Luther family lived in them. In the afternoon Uli will show us around the market square and the area west of it, including the Cranach (the painter) estate and the Castle church with the most famous door in the world, and Luther’s and Melanchthon’s graves. We will visit the Old Latin School (Wittenberg Project), then continue on to Berlin, where we will dine at our hotel. (B/D)
Day 7: Sunday June 5, 2016: Berlin
This morning we will take a walking tour of Berlin. We will see Angela Merkel’s office, the historic parliamentary building of the Reichstag, Brandenburg Gate, the Holocaust Memorial, and Check Point Charlie. The afternoon is free to visit museums etc. We will spend a second overnight in Berlin. (B)
Day 8: Monday June 6, 2016: Potsdam, Bremen
After leaving Berlin, we will visit Sanssouci Palace and Gardens in Potsdam, the summer residence of Frederick the Great and his retreat from the challenges of war and diplomacy. Sanssouci was built between 1745 and 1747, in an Italian rococo style. The gardens were created by Peter Joseph Lenné, Prussia’s greatest landscape gardener. We then start our journey to the west and we will check into our hotel in the Bremen area for one night. (B/D)
Day 9: Tuesday June 7, 2016: Bremerhaven, Venne
We will spend the morning in the award-winning German Emigration Museum in Bremerhaven, which shares the stories of Germans leaving their homeland and sailing to America. The exhibit includes a life-like quay and a reconstruction of Grand Central Terminal in New York. We will have lunch on sailing ship, followed by a sail around the harbor. In the afternoon we will visit the Cloppenburg Village Museum to see what rural life was like in Germany. Our next two nights will be in Venne. (B/D)
Day 10: Wednesday June 8, 2016: Venne
After breakfast we will set out to explore the Venne area, which is close to the city of Osnabrueck. In the late 1800s there was a large migration from this area to the States as there wasn’t enough farmland to support the growing population. We will have the opportunity to meet local people today and tour the area. (B/D)
Day 11: Thursday June 9, 2016: Rhine area
We will drive to Coblenz this morning, arriving around lunchtime. We will visit Marksburg Castle in Braubach, and be transported back to the Middle Ages when kings ruled, battles were fought just with swords, feasts abounded, and the common peasants had to pay for it all. Towering high on a hill overlooking the river, this castle is probably the most beautiful of its kind in Germany. We will continue further up the river to the Loreley Rock, then board a Rhine steamer in Kaub. We will sail towards Switzerland, passing vineyards, then disembark in Lorch, board our bus and continue on to Rüdesheim. We will dine at a local restaurant and stay in a hotel near Frankfurt Airport. (B/D)
Day 12: Friday June 10, 2016: Departure
We will transfer to the airport this morning for our flights back to the USA. (B/IF)
Our hotels are chosen for their quality, amenities and proximity to areas of interest. Whenever possible, we choose hotels in town centers, so that you are able to go off and explore in your free time. It may be necessary for us to substitute hotels for others of equal quality. You will be fully informed of any changes that affect you. Enjoy your stay!
May 31 – June 1, 2016
Hotel Schwarzer Adler
91607 Gebsattel nr. Rothenburg
June 1-3, 2016
Hotel Park Inn
99192 Apfelstädt bei Erfurt
June 3-4, 2016
June 4-6, 2016
Air in Berlin – Hotel GmbH
Ansbacher Straße 6
June 6-7, 2016
Bremer Straße 186
June 7-9, 2016
Venner Str. 5
June 9-10, 2016
Hotel Ramada Frankfurt Airport West
Casteller Straße 106
We will be arranging group flights for this tour. If you would like to travel independently please arrange to be in Frankfurt on the morning of May 30, 2016. If you would prefer to arrive early, we can arrange a pre-tour hotel night in Frankfurt. We can either assist you with flights or you can book your own. Please ensure we have a copy of your flight itinerary for our records as soon as you have booked it.
May 31, 2016: Please arrive in Frankfurt in the morning, preferably before 9 AM.
June 10, 2016: You can depart from Frankfurt at any time.
|AA 1673||June 2||St. Louis||Philadelphia||1:35 PM||4:50 PM|
|AA 736||June 2/3||Philadelphia||Heathrow||7:10 PM||7:45 AM|
|AA 731||June 10||Heathrow||Chicago||11:00 AM||3:15 PM|
|AA 2561||June 10||Chicago||St. Louis||6:05 PM||7:03 PM|
Price based on a minimum of 25 participants
• Transportation: via deluxe air-conditioned coach
• Accommodations (double-occupancy)
• Meals as indicated in the itinerary
• Uli Buschmann as tour escort throughout the tour
• Local step-on guides for city tours and major attractions
• Entrance fees included as per itinerary
• All transfers, as a group
• Baggage handling (1 piece of baggage per guest)
• All taxes and tips except as indicated below
• Air transportation ($1,650)
• Meals and beverages not identified in itinerary
• Items of a personal nature, such as passports and visas. Passports must be valid for six months beyond return date.
• Passenger trip cancellation insurance (details sent with reservation form)
• Gratuities for tour manager, and driver
• Deposit of $350 will secure your place on the tour. Please send all payments to Reformation Tours, P.O Box 854, Belleville, IL 62222.
• Final invoices will be sent in February, 2016.
• Final payment (including optional insurance) is due by March 16, 2016.
• Reservations will be accepted after March 16, 2016, subject to availability.
Group insurance through MH Ross is available, which covers the land and approximate air cost. Payment is due with final payment. Alternative options will be available after this date for late sign-ups. Click here to read about the coverage.
The cost depends on the total cost of the tour:[table “7” not found /]
Regardless of reason, cancellations are costly. To offset these costs the following fees will apply, plus any non-recoverable expenses to our suppliers:
From time of deposit to until 100 days before departure: $100
From 99-15 days prior to departure: $350 plus any non refundable deposits
14 days or less prior to departure: No refund– Cancellation charges also apply to additional accommodation reserved prior to and after the tour.
– Cancellations must be received in writing by 5:00 p.m. central time on the last business day of the applicable time period.
– For flight changes or cancellations, revision fees and/or airline cancellation charges will apply.
– Roommates canceling can result in a single supplement charge for the roommate. The Participant who cancels will be responsible for that charge if a substitute roommate cannot be found.
– Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance is strongly recommended.
Reformation Tours cannot assume responsibility for any additional costs or fees relating to the issuance and/or cancellation of air tickets or other arrangements not made through Reformation Tours.
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