Packed full of enchanting cities, remarkable artwork and luxurious hotels; Central Europe is our favourite cultural treasure trove. From the spires of Prague to the Ringstrasse of Vienna and the hills of Budapest, our travel experts have scoured it all to give you the ultimate insider access. Allow us to paint you a picture: nine nights spent delving into the history and art of three of the continent’s most picturesque capitals, with exclusive museum-access, local historians to show you around and top hotels to sleep it all off in. It’s a classical and elegant look at Central Europe, all done in signature Black Tomato style.Read more
Art amongst the Spires
For a dazzling introduction to Central Europe, we’ll start you off in Prague where your private driver will be on hand to whisk you away from the airport and into the historic Mala Strana district, where you’ll check into the Mandarin Oriental Prague. In the shadow of one of the city’s most famous monuments, its Castle, the Mandarin Oriental blends history with contemporary elegance and leaves you perfectly poised to explore the city – and what better way to do that than on a private walking tour along the Royal Route? Following the coronation route of Czech Kings to the Castle’s St. Vitus Cathedral is one of our favourite ways to see the city. See everything from the Strahov Monastery to the Loreto pilgrimage site and Lesser Town Quarter, with the instagram-favourite, the John Lennon Wall.
Strolling through the City of a Hundred Spires, your eye will no doubt be drawn to the striking Gothic and Baroque architecture, but on an art tour with a local art historian, we’ll take you off the tourist trail and into parts of the city that often even the most art-hungry travellers can miss out on. Tucked away within some of the Old Town’s most striking buildings, lie a number of hidden cultural treasures. From quirky Cubism in the House of the Black Madonna to the Golden Ring National Gallery in a Renaissance manor house, these are Prague’s real cultural highlights.
A Night at the Opera
From Prague, you’ll then hop across the border to what is quite possibly Europe’s most elegant city. Vienna does everything with added panache and nowhere epitomises this better than Hotel Sacher, where you’ll spend the next three nights. Host to glittering film stars and royalty alike, inventor of the Sachertorte and neighbour to the State Opera House, Hotel Sacher knows how to do luxury. Speaking of the Staatsoper, no trip to Vienna would be complete without stopping by for a performance. But if you’re not much of an opera buff? No problem. You get five-star service as standard with us and so, on arrival, your personal butler will hand you a glass of champagne before familiarising you with the programme for the evening.
Tomorrow, get to know the city on a private guided tour of some of its most iconic sights. From the staterooms of the Habsburg summer residence at Schönbrunn Palace to the manicured gardens of the Belvedere Palace and the elegant mansions and state buildings of the city’s most illustrious boulevard, the Ringstrasse, you’ll soon realise that Vienna is not a city that does things by halves. Bringing the city into the 21st-century, your tour will finish up on the banks of the Danube, where it’s lush green spaces and UN headquarters prove this city is as modern and trend-setting as it is elegant and traditional.
Swapping history for art, Vienna is also home to an impressive number of galleries and museums: The Kunsthistoriches, Leopold and Albertina to name but a few. But one place stands head and shoulders above the rest – The Museum of Art History. Housing a number of remarkable masterpieces and fascinating collections on everything from the Egyptians to Kunstkammer, we’ll arrange an exclusive tour guaranteed to open your eyes to Viennese art. Enjoy one last stroll around the Volksgarten before bidding adieu to Vienna and whizzing through some of Central Europe’s most picturesque landscapes on a first-class train ticket to Budapest.
Over Hills and Across Bridges
A city of two halves, arrive into Hungary’s counterbalanced capital where the River Danube divides hilly Buda from flat Pest and new from old. At the foot of the famous Chain Bridge on the old side of Pest, you’ll check in at the Four Seasons Gresham Palace, a hotel as beautiful as it is historic, and home for the final three nights. Over our years spent exploring Budapest, we’ve found the best way to get to know the city is by starting at the top and making your way down. So, join a private guide on a walking tour, beginning in the hills of Buda where the Castle District, Matthias Church and Fishermen’s Bastion all offer fantastic views over the city, before making your way down to Pest. Here, you’ll take in the splendour of the House of Parliament, Heroes’ Square and the Great Market Hall before discovering some of the cities smaller wonders in this insider’s guide to a truly unique city, full of secrets, curiosities and urban legends.
Your final day in Central Europe will be spent getting off the beaten track and out of the guidebooks to discover some of the city’s art-filled essentials, alongside an expert guide. From innovative galleries to colourful street art and tricky art installations to ruin bars that hide a world of artists, discover a city where local artisans and contemporary craftsmen brighten up every corner. After one last glass of Pálinka, it’s sadly time to return home but as you fly off over stunning landscapes, we’re certain Central Europe will have captured your heart. Colourful and cultural, artistic and historic, indulgent and enriching, it’s everything a place should be.