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Reichstag Building, Berlin
Wittenberg Market Square
Merchant's Bridge, Erfurt
Zwingli statue in Zurich
Reformers Wall, Geneva
The 500th anniversary of the Reformation is the perfect occasion for believers to discover their spiritual roots. Frank Drinkhouse, owner of Reformation Tours, will escort us as we trace our rich Protestant heritage through three countries: Germany, France, and Switzerland. Visit sites where John Calvin, Martin Luther, Ulrich Zwingli, John Knox and others made history. Experience fellowship with local believers. Connect with the culture and enjoy special features: a day-cruise on the Rhine River, French cuisine, German cakes, Swiss chocolates, and Alpine vistas.
Pastor Drew and Cathy Smith (College Hill Presbyterian Church, Cincinnati, OH) invite you to join them on this journey of God’s renewing work 500 years ago. We pray this travel experience will lead to reformation in each of our hearts as we explore together the places where the Holy Spirit brought energy, life, and fidelity to the church of Jesus Christ.
Please note this itinerary is copyrighted.
Key: IF = In Flight Meals, B= Breakfast, D = Dinner
Day 1: Monday, September 18, 2017: Overnight Flight to Berlin, Germany
Our journey to explore the sites and heroes of the Reformation begins with an overnight flight to Berlin. Early arrivals are welcome to join Frank for an optional dinner at a local restaurant. (IF)
Day 2: Tuesday, September 19, 2017: Arrival in Berlin
Welcome to Germany! On arrival in Berlin, travelers will take a taxi to the Berliner Hof in the heart of Berlin. At dinner time, join other travelers for a Welcome Gathering. An optional group dinner follows at a nearby local restaurant.
Day 3: Wednesday,September 20, 2017: Berlin and Wittenberg
After a buffet breakfast at the hotel, we have the morning free to explore the vibrant area near the hotel. Options include the Cold War Check Point Charlie and other former East Berlin spots. We will meet back at the hotel in the early afternoon for our Berlin orientation tour. We will stop at the famous Brandenburg Gate for photos and see the Reichstag (Parliament) building as well as lovely boulevards. At the Berlin Cathedral (the Dom), we will be introduced to the key German Reformers and their princely protectors. After a visit to the WWII Topography of Terror Museum, we will travel to Wittenberg. Tonight, local Christians will dine with the group at the hotel and share their experiences of ministry in Wittenberg. (B/D)
Day 4: Thursday, September 21, 2017: Wittenberg, Torgau
This morning, our local guide will take us on a tour of Lutherstadt Wittenberg. It was here in 1517 that Martin Luther nailed his famous 95 Theses and Melanchthon helped forge Reformation Theology. Here the Cranachs painted now famous portraits of Luther. We will spend time in the Lutherhalle (Luther House) Museum, where Luther lived first as a monk, then later with his wife and children. We’ll be able to view some of Luther’s very own personal library, rare manuscripts, and early Bibles. The tour will also include Castle Church, Stadtkirche St. Marien (St. Mary’s church) where Luther preached and where his children were baptized, and the Luther Oak where he burned the edict from Rome, condemning him as a “heretic”. The rest of the day is free to enjoy the town or take an optional excursion to nearby Torgau, known for its special connections to Martin and Katharina Luther and to World War II. (B)
Day 5: Friday, September 22, 2017: Erfurt
After breakfast, we will travel to Erfurt, where we will have free time for lunch and a stroll around this delightful medieval town. Our local guide will take us on a tour including St. Mary’s Cathedral, St. Severin’s Church and the famous Merchant’s Bridge. We will end at the Augustinian Monastery where Luther became a monk on July 17, 1505. We will be able to see his monastic quarters, including one cell furnished to look as it would have done when he lived there. At the end of the tour we will have a group worship service in the chapel. Later we will dine in the “Luther Cellar” restaurant with a traditional meal from his time. We spend two nights in his Augustinian Monastery, which is now a Christian hotel. (B/D)
Day 6: Saturday, September 23, 2017: Eisenach, Erfurt
Luther 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. By 1521, the wrath of Pope Leo X had been unleashed on Luther. The monk’s friends and protector Frederick the Wise faked Luther’s kidnapping and hid him in Wartburg Castle. We will tour the Castle and see where, in just 11 weeks, Luther translated the New Testament into German. The afternoon is free to explore the town, and tour the Bach Museum or the Luther House Museum. The bus will take the group back to Erfurt. There is an optional tour to Buchenwald Nazi concentration camp. The evening is at leisure. (B)
Day 7: Sunday, September 24, 2017: Rhine Cruise, Rudesheim
During the morning bus ride, we will have a chance to ask questions and to hear more about the Reformation. At St Goarshausen, we will board a Rhine River ship for a picturesque cruise past magnificent castles, the famous Loreley Rock and disembark in charming Rüdesheim. Next take a cable car over vineyards to the Germania Monument for some gorgeous Rhine valley views. During a relaxed dinner at a local winery, we can learn about life in an abbey. This evening in Rüdesheim we will have a relaxed dinner and can sing along to German folk songs with live accordion music. (B/D)
Day 8: Monday, September 25, 2017: Worms, Colmar
Our guide in Worms will take us to see the amazing Cathedral, followed by the site of Luther’s Worms Debates (Diet of Worms), now a park, with a plaque commemorating Luther’s brave stand for faith and truth. We’ll have a photo stop at the stunning Reformation Monument, followed by worship and prayers in the Church of the Holy Trinity. We will then travel into France to Colmar. This town escaped significant damage during WWII and has many picturesque half-timbered houses. This was the hometown of Frederic Bartholdi, creator of the Statue of Liberty. Frank will lead an optional walking tour this evening to see local highlights. (B)
Day 9: Tuesday, September 26, 2017: Strasbourg, Colmar
Today we will visit Strasbourg, referred to as the “City of Hope” and “Refuge of the Righteous” by the Anabaptists. Here 26 year old John Calvin wrote his first edition of Systematic Theology, and Martin Bucer developed influential protestant doctrines and practices that redefined liturgy. We will have a stroll around the city center and view the Cathedral of Strasbourg, St. Thomas’s Church, and the charming “La Petite France” quarter. In the afternoon we will have a guided walking tour with a local French Reformation scholar, followed by a special fellowship meal. (B/D)
Day 10: Wednesday, September 27, 2017: Constance, Zurich
What a day: breakfast in France, lunch in Germany and dinner in Switzerland! In Constance, we will pray on the spot where the pre-Reformer Jan Hus was martyred and see the Cathedral where his heresy trials were held. Crossing over into Switzerland, we will dine in an authentic Swiss restaurant. We will overnight in Zurich — a city of water, banks and churches. (B/D)
Day 11: Thursday, September 28, 2017: Zurich, Lucerne, and Grindelwald
We will learn more about the Anabaptists and Ulrich Zwingli this morning as we visit key Reformation sites in Zurich, including the Grossmünster where Zwingli preached, the Helferei where he lived, and his memorial statue. We will stroll through the historic Auld Stadt (old city) before departing for Lucerne. Our afternoon is free to explore Lucerne’s picturesque lakeside setting and 14th century Chapel Bridge, the most photographed one in Switzerland. We will end the day in the Alpine village of Grindenwald. The area’s stunning beauty has inspired writers and great composers such as Tchaikovsky, Mendelssohn and Richard Wagner. (B/D)
Day 12: Friday, September 29, 2017: Grindelwald
The area around Grindelwald is the place to bask in God’s creation, the Alps. On our free day options include bike rental, a hike with a picnic, or a trip on the cogwheel railway to Kleine Scheidigg and the spectacular Jungfrau Peak. Frank will escort an optional tour to Murren via cable cars and trains. Murren, at 5,000 feet elevation, has breathtaking Alpine scenery. We will have the opportunity to take time to worship,. relax, and reflect upon God’s creation. (B)
Day 13: Saturday, September 30, 2017: Geneva
We will stop for coffee in medieval Murten, where we can walk atop the original city walls and explore another chapter of Swiss history. We then continue to Geneva, where Calvin, Knox, Farel and others brought Christ’s teachings to eager listeners and created a model Christian city. Our tour will begin at the impressive Reformation Monument. Four statues of four Reformation leaders stand as sentinels to truth and courage inspired by godly faith. We will see Calvin’s church, the Auditoire de Calvin, (Calvin’s Academy, also known as The Protestant Lecture Hall), where the inspired theologian himself taught. Next door is St. Pierre’s Cathedral, where John Calvin preached. We can see his chair and a restored section decorated as it would have been before Calvin. Our final stop is an audio guide tour through the incredible Reformation Museum. Below the museum and the Cathedral, we can see the ruins of a Roman sanctuary, a 4th century basilica, and a 6th century church. We have a free time this afternoon to experience these key sites before we dine at a local restaurant this evening for our farewell meal. (B/D)
Day 14: Sunday, October 1, 2017: Return
Say goodbye to those who have shared the past 12 days of this spiritual journey. Frank will help with transportation from the hotel to the airport or train station depending on your post-tour plans. (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 we are able to go off and explore in our 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!
If you would prefer to arrive early, let us know if you would like us to book a room for you.
Sept 19-20, 2017
Sept 20-22, 2017
Best Western Hotel Brauhaus
06886 Lutherstadt Wittenberg
Sept 22-24, 2017
Sept 24-25, 2017
Bruehl’s Trapp Hotel
Rudesheim am Rhein
Sept 25-27, 2017
Ibis Styles Colmar Centre
11 Boulevard du Champ de Mars
Sept 27-28, 2017
Sept 28-30, 2017
Sept 30-October 1, 2017
Hotel Royal Manotel
43, Rue de Lausanne
Please arrange to be in Berlin on the afternoon of September 19, 2017. If you would prefer to arrive earlier, we can arrange a pre-tour hotel nights in Berlin. 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 and we request that you don’t book any non-refundable flights until the tour is a guaranteed departure.
Price based on a minimum of 20 participants
• Transportation: via deluxe air-conditioned coaches
• Accommodations (double-occupancy) in superior 3-star and moderate 4-star hotels
• Meals as indicated in the itinerary
• Frank Drinkhouse 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
• Insurance during the tour (pre-tour coverage upgrade available)
• Baggage handling (1 piece of baggage per guest)
• All taxes and tips except as indicated below
• Air transportation
• Single supplement ($650)
• Meals and beverages not identified in itinerary
• Items of a personal nature, such as passports and visas. Passports must be valid for months beyond return date.
• Pre-tour 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 May 2017
• Final payment is due by June 22, 2017
• Reservations will be accepted after June 22, 2017, subject to availability
We now offer all of our travelers FREE travel insurance on group tours, which is valid throughout the tour. This insurance is through RoamRight, a division of Arch Insurance Company. You have the option to upgrade to the Total Travel Protection Plan to receive full coverage. The price depends on the total land and air cost of the tour.
The Travel Protection Plan covers you while you are on tour (not before). It includes medical and evacuation coverage, missed travel connections, trip delay, baggage delays, and lost luggage.
Upgraded Insurance from $180 (land)
You can upgrade to the Total Travel Protection plan, by adding Trip Cancellation coverage. This is valid from the time of purchase until the tour begins. E-mail us to add the upgraded insurance, or request the upgrade when you sign-up for the tour.
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.
You can fill out your reservations online by clicking the “Book Now” tab or click here to download the form.
You can either send a check made payable to “Reformation Tours” to P.O. Box 854, Belleville, IL 62222 or click here to pay by credit card.
Your tour price includes FREE travel insurance throughout the tour through RoamRight, a division of Arch Insurance Company.
Included Insurance – FREE to all our group travelers, the Travel Protection Plan covers you while you are on tour (not before). It includes medical and evacuation coverage, missed travel connections, trip delay, baggage delays, and lost luggage.
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