4 DAYS FROM $2,499
4 DAYS FROM $1,199
Journey to the heart of Bavaria to experience a fairy-tale town that hosts a very special celebration once every decade. On this once-in-a-lifetime extension, be enchanted by a breathtaking village frozen in time, home to famous Lüftlmalerei wall paintings and wood carvings that depict traditional mythical stories. And, on one evening every ten years, the town puts on a Passion Play about the life of Jesus, fabled to have kept a plague at bay more than four centuries ago.
This year is even more unprecedented, as the current global state of affairs delayed the event from 2020 now to 2022. You'll have the opportunity to take part in this tradition that remains alive and well and has been an international allurement for the faithful and historians alike since 1634.
Not only will you have a seat on one of the most dramatic and unforgettable performances, you'll also be able to explore modern and storied Munich and discover what makes this city so wonderful. Enjoy some of the best seats in the house on the Oberammergau Passion Play and more of the most enriching features on this spectacular extension in Germany.
Please note that the Passion Play Theatre is an open-air stage with roofed seats. Therefore, please be sure to wear comfortable seasonal and weather-appropriate clothing. Luggage may be left at a reserved drop-off point on site. Vantage provides small binoculars.
Fly overnight to Munich, Germany
You'll begin your journey to Europe with an overnight flight to Munich, Germany.
Arrive in Munich to a warm welcome
Welcome to Munich! If you purchased your airfare from Vantage, a Vantage representative will meet you and arrange your transfer to your centrally located hotel. Settle in and relax before joining your fellow travelers for a Welcome Reception and Dinner this evening.
Take a city tour of Munich
After checking out of your hotel this morning, you'll have the chance to discover Munich and see its charming highlights. A panoramic tour introduces historic sites like Frauenkirche — the city’s most famous church — as well as some of the dozens of museums here, which showcase everything from art to technology. After time for lunch on your own, you'll also visit Ettal Abbey, which traces its history back to 1330. After a devastating fire in 1744, the spectacular basilica, domed ceiling, and monastery were rebuilt to the current grandeur. Later, check into your hotel, where tonight's dinner will be.
Experience the famous Passion Play in Oberammergau
After breakfast, transfer to the small German village of Oberammergau for the legendary Passion Play performance, held once every decade. Here, you'll have a short leisure period to obtain lunch on your own and meet your City Host, who will lead you to the Passion Play.
Legend has it that the village was spared by a large plague nearly 400 years ago, with a promise to God that they would present a Passion Play every 10 years to show their gratitude. The global health crisis has delayed the production to 2022, but we're thrilled now to have you experience this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, played out in town at a large theatre with the incredible story unfolding before your eyes. There are two parts to the performance, with time in-between for a sumptuous three-course dinner. You'll stay overnight in Oberammergau tonight, with your City Host guiding you back to the hotel.
Transfer to Munich to continue your journey
After bidding farewell to Germany, we'll fly to Lisbon, Portugal to join the base tour.
Featuring year-round balmy weather and a trademark fortified wine, the Portuguese island of Madeira boasts a lush beauty that earned its label as the “Floating Garden of the Atlantic.” During your three-day stay in the lovely island capital of Funchal, you’ll enjoy a half-day city tour and immersion into local island life, plus a chance to peruse the covered market at the edge of the Old Town. Raise a glass to this oceanic outpost — the perfect complement to your Mediterranean cruise!
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Fly to Madeira
An overnight flight takes you to Madeira, Portugal, today.
Arrive in Madeira and settle in
Arrive today and settle into your hotel before a Welcome Briefing, where you’ll meet other travelers joining you for enriching discoveries. Dinner is on your own tonight.
Tour Madeira’s marketplace and Old Town
Set out this morning for a half-day city tour. Cultural Discovery: Browse the fragrant stands of the marketplace brimming with produce carted in from all over the fertile island and stroll the cobbled lanes of the Old Town. Then ascend to the town of Monte, 1,800 feet above the sea. Splendid views greet you from here, but you might thrill more to the mode of transport you’ll use to return to Funchal: a traditional two-seater wicker toboggan or “basket sled.” A pair of pilots — skilled and expert carreiros — guide you downhill for the steep mile-long journey. Back in the city, enjoy the rest of your afternoon at leisure. This evening, experience more of Funchal on your own with a night at leisure.
Explore more of Madeira on your own
Today you may craft your own itinerary with a day at leisure.
Fly to Lisbon
Head to the Funchal airport for your flight to Lisbon, where you'll join the base program.
Here’s your chance to discover more of Spain’s stately and iconic capital. On this 3-night extension, let Vantage introduce you to this energetic, artistic metropolis — and one of Europe’s most indulgent culinary capitals. Get your fill of tapas on a walking tour that leads you to the bustling Mercado de San Miguel and see the city’s exquisite sights, from the grandeur of Plaza Mayor to leisure opportunities to seek out museums. Come experience Madrid in true Vantage style!
Board a high-speed train to Madrid, then discover its highlights on a panoramic tour
Today, you’ll leave Barcelona on a high-speed train bound for Madrid. Upon arrival, you’ll be whisked away on a panoramic tour of Spain’s capital city. Afterward, check into your hotel and enjoy dinner on your own in this city of gastronomical delights.
Get to know Madrid on a walking tour and tapas tasting
Explore vibrant Madrid on foot, walking through Plaza Sol and Plaza Mayor, savoring city views, and passing multiple other historic monuments. Later, visit the city’s Mercado Central for an included tapas tasting! The rest of the afternoon is at leisure to further explore. Tonight, enhance your tapas discoveries with another opportunity to have dinner on your own.
Explore Madrid at your leisure
Enjoy a free day to pursue your own interests with recommendations provided by your Cruise Director. Wander the city’s many squares, shop for espadrilles and other classic Spanish products, and get your fill of tapas. The evening is at leisure with dinner on your own.
Transfer to Madrid’s airport for your return flight home.