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Insight Vacations Grand Tour of Scandinavia (Summer 2017) (E940)

21 Days from Copenhagen to Oslo Print
Tour Style: Regional Tour
Europe & Britain 2017/18
Visits: Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark

Sail the Baltic Sea, crossing rolling tundra and glassy fjords on your search for the midnight sun, all the while enjoying the local culture, history and striking scenery.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Copenhagen: See the Little Mermaid, Stock Exchange, the Rosenborg Castle and Amalienborg Palace.
  • Stockholm: Walk through the Old Town and see the cathedral and Royal Palace.
  • Helsinki: Visit the ‘Church in the Rock', Sibelius Monument and see the Finlandia Hall.
  • Kuopio: Ascend the viewing Tower for spectacular views.
  • Rovaniemi: See Alvar Aalto's Town Hall and visit the Cathedral. Visit the Santa Claus Village and receive an Arctic Circle certificate
  • Sodankylä: Visit one of Lappland's oldest churches.
  • Karasjok: See the Sami Parliament.
  • Mosjoen: See the street of historic, 19th century wooden buildings
  • Hell: Tell all your friends you've been there!
  • Trondheim: See the Market Square with its statue of Olav Tryggvason, the Nidaros Cathedral, the Tyholt tower and Old Town Bridge.
  • Lom: See the 12C Stave Church.
  • Oslo: See the impressive Akershus Castle and Royal Palace. Visit the controversial Vigeland sculptures in Frogner Park.
  • Scenic Drives: Peer Gynt Valley, Rago National Park and Norwegian Fjordland.

AUTHENTIC REGIONAL FLAVOURS

  • Alta: Enjoy a fabulous barbecue dinner.
  • North Cape: Join an included experience to see something that doesn't happen - sunset! Even at midnight, the fiery orb clings to the horizon. A unique experience accompanied by champagne and caviar to make it even more special.
  • Oslo: Scandinavian hospitality is matched with fine food and a glass of wine at your Celebration Dinner.
  • 19 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 8 three-course table d'hôte Dinner or Buffets, plus tea or coffee (D); plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 1 Signature Evening (SE) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) with wine, plus tea or coffee.

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES AND DINING

  • Copenhagen: Make the most of the long summer nights at Tivoli Gardens, the famous entertainment park.
  • Copenhagen: With a Local Expert witness the regal interior of Christiansborg Palace, with its stunning tapestries, furnishings and decor.
  • Stockholm: With a Local Expert, step inside the City Hall where the fabulous Gold Room is covered by 25 million gilded mosaic tiles.
  • Karasjok: Visit the museum devoted to Sami history and culture offering a glimpse into the old Sami lifestyle.
  • Alta: At a working husky farm, meet the huskies and share in the challenges of competing in marathon Arctic dog sleigh races.
  • Geiranger: Cruise along the deep, blue waters of majestic Geirangerfjord, surrounded by snow-covered mountains, gushing waterfalls and lush green vegetation.
  • Oslo: Stand beneath the scrolled prows and handcut hulls of 9th century ships that carried Viking nobles to the afterlife and learn about their traditions and culture.
  • Rovaniemi: With a Local Expert, visit the church and see Town Hall.

STAY AT THE BEST ADDRESSES

  • Stockholm: The classy Hilton Slussen is conveniently located within walking distance of the historic Old Town.
  • Cruising: Enjoy the additional comfort of A-Class cabins on-board your overnight cruise from Stockhom to Helsinki.
  • Mosjøen: The traditional Fru Haugans Hotel is in a picturesque location. It offers all the comforts of a modern hotel and is characterised by excellent personal service.
  • Geiranger: For a scenic location, you won't find better than the Union. Enjoy upgraded rooms set against a fabulous backdrop of breathtaking fjord scenery and mountains.
  • Helsinki: Glo Hotel Art is a charming hotel, built around a century-old Art Nouveau castle it is in the centre of Helsinki surrounded by the vivid Design District.

ADDITIONAL FIVE STAR SERVICES

  • An expert Insight Tour Director, at the pinnacles of their careers, will smooth your way throughout your journey. They are your ‘travelling concierges', expert guides, consummate organisers and friends in a foreign land.
  • Enjoy the unique comfort of Insight's luxury air-conditioned 40 seat coach with extended leg room and on-board restroom. It's business class comfort.
  • Personal radio headsets, gives you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights without missing any of your local expert's fascinating insights and commentaries.
  • Baggage handling everywhere, with seamless and prompt delivery to your door at every hotel.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. Plus we include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel WiFi.
  • Insight Flourishes - from time to time, your Tour Director will enchant you with local tidbits, each representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • Included airport transfers at scheduled times on arrival and departure days.
  • Cruise in A-Class cabins with sea views and flat screen TV.

Insight Vacations Tour Itinerary

Day: 1 Your Journey Begins
Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).
Day: 2 Welcome to Copenhagen
On arrival at Copenhagen Airport, your transfer shuttle service will leave for your hotel at 09:00, 12:00 & 15:00. In the evening, join your Tour Director for a warm and friendly Welcome Reception, a pleasant dinner and wine followed by a visit to the glittering lights and enchanting atmosphere of the world-famous Tivoli Gardens.(WD)
Day: 3 Wonderful, Wonderful Copenhagen
Start the day by meeting Hans Christian Andersen's Little Mermaid, gazing wistfully across the harbour. Follow this with a visit inside the Christiansborg Palace, seat of the Danish Government, to marvel at the opulent interior. See the Rosenborg and Amalienborg Palaces and the Renaissance Stock Exchange. The rest of the day is at leisure.(BB)
Day: 4 On to Stockholm, City of Islands
In the morning, leave Denmark and cross over the Øresund Bridge to Sweden. Your journey will take you through a patchwork of fertile farmlands and along the peaceful shores of Lake Vättern. Continue to Stockholm, which is set on 14 beautiful islands. In the evening, perhaps try the local cuisine served in traditional surroundings?(BB)
Day: 5 The Sights of Stockholm and board your Baltic Sea Cruise
Join a Local Expert for your visit to the City Hall's marvellous ‘Gold Room' as well as the 'Blue Room' where the Nobel Prize banquets are held. Then continue into the medieval island heart of the city to view the cathedral, walk through the Old Town and see the Royal Palace. The afternoon is at leisure. Don't miss the opportunity to visit the Vasa Galleon - a marvellous impression of life on board a 17th century naval vessel. In the evening, embark on a Baltic cruise to Finland through the largest archipelago in the world. Enjoy dinner on board and marvel at the sea views from the comfort of your A-Class cabins.(BB / DW)
Day: 6 Fashionable Helsinki
(Relaxed Start) Helsinki is famous as a global trendsetter in design, fashion, stunning architecture and luscious parks. Disembark your Baltic cruise and with a Local Expert, visit the astonishing modern 'Church in the Rock'. Also see the Sibelius Monument and Finlandia Hall. Why not stop for lunch at the colourful market located by the harbour? Afterwards you could spend time browsing the vast array of stalls selling local souvenirs, handicrafts as well as fruits, vegetables and world class pancakes.(BB)
Day: 7 Lakes and Forests to Kuopio
Travel through a land of beautiful lakes and forests. In the afternoon, make your ascent of Kuopio's Viewing Tower. The splendid panorama will reveal why Finland is called the land of a thousand lakes.(BB / D)
Day: 8 The Road to Rovaniemi
Journey towards the Arctic and into Lapland, the home of the Sami people. Travel via the port and university town of Oulu, to Rovaniemi, the modern capital of the region.(BB / D)
Day: 9 Rovaniemi and Lapland
(Relaxed Start) Join a Local Expert to see the Town Hall, designed by Aalvar Aalto and visit Rovaniemi Church. Next, a delight for the young at heart! Visit the Santa Claus Village where it is Christmas all year round. Meet Santa, visit the post office and cross the Arctic Circle - you'll receive a certificate to prove you were there! Later, perhaps you may want to visit the open-air museum and Arktikum?(BB)
Day: 10 Cross the Arctic Circle to Ivalo
(Relaxed Start) In the morning there is the option to visit Ranua Wildlife Park, for a chance to see polar bears, lynxes or even a wolverine. Alternatively, you may enjoy a morning at leisure. Later journey north on the road of the four winds, where you may see reindeer roaming freely as you head for one of the oldest churches in Lapland. Travel through Europe’s last great wilderness to see the national park near the gold centre of Tankavaara.(BB / D)
Day: 11 The North Cape and the Sun that never Sets
Cross the rolling tundra into Norway to stop at Karasjok, the seat of the Sami Parliament and a centre of Sami culture. Visit a Sami folk museum, then it's on through unique scenery to the North Cape. With only the Svalbard Islands separating you from the North Pole, it literally feels like you are at the end of the world. In the evening, journey to the northernmost point of Europe in search of the midnight sun, where you will enjoy a glass of bubbles and caviar in one of the most special places on earth.(BB / D)
Day: 12 Through Finnmark to Alta
(Relaxed Start) Maybe set out on a bird watching safari in the morning before returning to the mainland and travelling to Alta.(BB)
Day: 13 A World of Adventure in Alta
(Relaxed Start) In the morning, enjoy time at leisure in Alta. Maybe check out the prehistoric UNESCO-protected rock carvings or take a wilderness river trip? Later, at a working Husky farm, learn about the Alaskan Huskies and Arctic dog sleigh racing. The dogs are only allowed to bark when they know it's time for running! Afterwards, delight in a wonderful barbecue dinner.(BB / SE)
Day: 14 Narvik & the Norwegian Campaign
Travel through stunning northern scenery, past mountains and fishing villages to Narvik. Along the way, see the fjord where the battleship Tirpitz hid out and hear tales of one of the first large-scale battles of World War Two.(BB)
Day: 15 Across Tysfjord to Mosjøen and its Sea Street
Take a ferry across Tysfjord and pass Rago National Park - its fjords cutting deep into the landscape. Bid farewell to the Arctic before reaching Mosjøen, a pleasant town on the Vefsnfjord, that has a large concentration of listed wooden buildings and Norway's oldest octagonal church.(BB / D)
Day: 16 Laksfoss Falls to Trondheim, Capital of the Vikings
Drive through Namdalen then watch for salmon leaping upstream to their spawning-grounds at the mighty Laksfoss Falls. Continue via the village of Hell to Trondheim, seat of the ancient Viking kings, and Norway's third largest city. Trondheim has always reflected the changing fortunes of Norway and is full of interest; see the Market Square dominated by its statue of Olav Tryggvason, Norway's national shrine, the Nidaros Cathedral, the Tyholt Tower and Old Town Bridge.(BB)
Day: 17 Geiranger, Jewel of the Fjords
Begin one of the most scenic days you will ever experience. Norwegian Fjordland is a dream world of soaring mountains, icy glaciers and rivers which cascade thousands of feet into the green valleys below. Cross the Dovre Mountains, which form Norway's oldest National Park. Arrive at the mirror-smooth waters of Geirangerfjord to embark on a spectacular cruise beneath towering cliffs and cascading waterfalls. Your hotel is in a superb setting overlooking the beautiful Norwegian Fjord landscape.(BB / D)
Day: 18 Geiranger at Leisure
(Relaxed Start) Enjoy a whole day of relaxation amid the fjords and mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage area. Consider taking an optional scenic drive along the amazing Troll's Road, a masterpiece of engineering when it was built over 70 years ago.(BB / D)
Day: 19 Oslo, the Capital
Travel via lakes and snow-capped peaks to Lom – home to one of Norway's most beautiful stave churches. Continue through the countryside of ‘Peer Gynt', immortalised by Ibsen, to Øyer where you may catch a glimpse of the world's largest troll! After stopping in Lillehammer, it's on to the modern Norwegian capital of Oslo.(BB)
Day: 20 Cosmopolitan Oslo
In the morning, sightseeing with a Local Expert will show you the spires and ramparts of medieval Akershus Castle guarding the harbour, the Royal Palace, and includes a visit to the Viking Ship Museum. Visit Frogner Park, housing the intriguing sculptures by Gustav Vigeland, before an afternoon at leisure. In the evening, round off your tour with a farewell Celebration Dinner and a glass of wine to toast to new friends.(BB / CD)
Day: 21 Out of Oslo
Departure transfers arrive at Oslo Airport at 07:15 & 10:15.(BB)

Available Room Types: Single, Twin, TwinShare, Triple

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