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GAS May 2017

Hello All!!

I was just wondering who all signed up for the GAS May 13-May 26 tour this year! I would love to connect with others before going on the trip! Also it would be greatly appreciated if any alumni had advice for this specific tour (such as any tourist scams we should be aware of or maybe some interesting sights to see that wasn't already included on the Itinerary).

Posted by
289 posts

I took this tour in September 2015. It is a wonderful tour. The scenery is jaw dropping. I recommend that you look at the scrapbook archives for the GAS tour. There are some really good ones. You will see what others have done with their free time. In Baden Baden we took the funicular up to Merkur mountain. We did the hike with our tour guide at Murren. Our free time in Munich we went shopping for lederhosen and dirndl's. In Salzburg, we went up to the fortress and at Hallstatt we took the funicular up the mountain to the overlook. In Vienna we visited the imperial apartments and the Sissi exhibit. The other thing we enjoyed was our pre-trip and post-trip tours. Before we went to Trier we took some time on the Rhine River with a stay in St Goar. After the tour, we took the train from Vienna to Rothenburg and loved our visit there before taking the train back to Frankfurt and flying home. Read your guidebook, look at the RS videos of this area, and wait for people to respond on this forum. I hope you find some tour mates, but even if you don't, you will make some wonderful friends and collect some awesome memories.

Posted by
1173 posts

I just went to Vienna and stayed after the GAS tour 4 extra days and we also went to Munich and Salzburg. You could stay 3 weeks in all three cities and may not see everything! In Vienna, I went to two concerts in the evening, one was 2 hrs long, one was 1 hr long and an operetta which was at the Volksopera. All were excellent. If you want more info pm me. I spent most of the one day at the Kunsthistorisches Museum which was amazing and another day at the Belvedere Palace to see the Klimt painting The Kiss along with other Klimt paintings and other art works which were also very nice and explored the beautiful gardens. I loved the Hofburg Treasury and all the wonderful cafes with the excellent deserts.
The Albertina Musuem was nice, we took a tour of the Opera house in the city center which was nice but with limited time, I would skip this and the Albertina Museum. Maybe on another visit to Vienna. The Kariskirche church was wonderful and looked like it should be in Rome! St Stephen's Cathedral is a gothic church and nice with lots of shopping streets around it. Busy area! I did go to the Leopold Museum, I did not care for it as there was only one artist of all his paintings and I found I did not care for his art. But glad I went to see what is all about. A few Klimt's there too. But not enough time, I would skip it. There is plenty to see that is amazing to see in Vienna.
The Hofburg Imperial Apartments is not to be missed. I did not make it to the Naschmarkt, for when I went near by it was closed. I did go to the Sucession building but go if you are near by and not if it is out of your way! The outside of the building is impressive, inside not so much but if you are a Klimt fan like me, go inside as there are Klimt freezes not to be missed. I did not make it to the Schonbrunn Palace ( ran out of time and energy, traveling for 2 weeks prior) but that is first on my list when I go back! On my list is the Imperial Furniture Collection, Kaisergruft Crypt, Hofburg New Palace Museum. Not enough time as I spent lots of time at the places I did visit.
I will send another message with Munich. Each city deserves its own attention on where to go and what to see and do.

Posted by
1173 posts

Salzburg is a very nice city with a river that runs through it. Tons of beautiful shops and some very nice churches to visit. St. Peter's cemetery is beautiful and I really wanted to go to the Hohensalzburg Fortress but it did not work out. Mirabell Gardens are beautiful. Not much to say as my time there was short and it was rainy. But it was a lovely city. The Mozart concert is optional, and is very nice! I enjoyed the music and the dinner was nice.

Posted by
1173 posts

Vienna: I did went to see the Spanish Riding School to see the horses perform which was amazing. For a much less fee you can see the horses being exercised. Either way, check this out to see if this is something you are interested in.
The subway and trams are excellent forms of public transportation.
Munich: Nice city, liked it well enough and would like to go back, been a few times now on tours. Great beer halls, easy to walk around, lovely shops, Main square is the Marienplatz not to be missed and the Glockenspiel. I stayed two times right near the Viktualienmarkt which is very nice to walk around and see. I loved the Residenz, not to be missed, which is the palace right in the city! I went to the Hofbrauhaus which is a fun place to go for drinks one night. I went to the Neue Pinakothek museum of 1900-1920 paintings which I loved!!! I am a huge museum fan. I did not go to the Alte Pinakothek which I know is very highly recommended and I want to go to if I get back to Munich. It was being renovated so I opted to see the other museum. No time for both anyway. There are some main churches to see, St. Peter's, St Michaels which I saw the time before this year's trip. Churches are always impressive, so go see all of them if you can. I also went to Dallmyr Delicatessen which has a lovely restaurant on the 2nd floor, good food and nice elegant atmosphere. I wore slacks or jeans not needed to get dressed. I went for lunch, would go back!
I did not spend as much time in Munich but hope to get back to see the other museum and would see the two palaces again.

Salzburg is next to tell you about. I was there briefly on the tour but enjoyed this city and would like to go back.

You will find wonderful architecture in both Munich and mostly in Vienna! The food in Vienna was excellent ( spent more time there) and you will be "hiking" just by walking every where in both cities, I assure you of that!

Posted by
1173 posts

Salzburg Cathedral is wonderful as is the Mirabell Gardens! I loved the St Peters cemetary - yes, it is a cemetary but highly unique and beautiful. I loved the Getreidepasse which is a very picturesque shopping street with the best wrought iron signs, I think I took a photo of every sign on that street.
I wanted to go to the hohensalzburg Fortress and hope to if I get back to Salzburg. That is on the top of my list and they say ( on this forum) the marionette show is not to be missed. I went to a lovely Mozart dinner concert which was very nice.
That's it for Salzburg, nice city, river runs through it and was able to walk every where. Tons of lovely shops, I bought great loose tea. There was a lovely tea shops in both Munich and Salzburg. I did not spend much time, on the tour there.

Posted by
1173 posts

There are so many things to do in your free time, but you will have to choose one or two things to do and do it. Think about what you want to do in your free time and make a list and bring it, this way when you have free time, you won't be looking at the guide book to figure out what you want to see. This tour was busy, an adventure and thrilling! Layer, layer, layer. Bring a rain jacket, jeans, two pairs of comfortable shoes, casual clothes, and one warm sweater. if you can pack an overnight bag for Hallstatt that would be good. Read the tour scrapbooks, they have valuable information and great photos. I stayed four extra days after the tour in Vienna and was happy I did. If you have time, stay a few days in Vienna and make sure you get to Trier at least the day before the tour. Trier is nice to have two days before the tour. make sure you see the churches and gardens before the tour as there is not much time on the tour and church services are going on, in Trier. In Baden-Baden, I went to the spa and loved it. I was worried but it was actually a lot of fun and relaxing. Save some room in your suitcase if your a shopper, there are tons of beautiful shops. I just found Austria and Germany to be shopping meccas than any other places I visited on other tours. I loved this tour so much

Posted by
1173 posts

Hallstatt is like a fairlytale. The boat ride is lovely, the lake is amazing, the scenery is wonderful. I actually did not get to see the town, church, or many wonderful shops. Saw a few shops. I climbed the huge, massive waterfall, tons of stairs, to see tons of water, waterfalls and it was nothing like I ever saw. The walk back to the hotel was very nice, quiet, all pretty houses, land, horses, before you even get into town. Hotel is the nicest one and it is the best ever. So there you have it. Again, this is what I did, but after the tour you will understand there is so much to see and do and with time limited, choose one or two things to do. I had another wonderful 4 days in Vienna! If you are able do go to Trier at least the day before if not more days before the tour, then do so, and stay in Vienna a few days.

Posted by
1173 posts

I saw no tourist scams while I was in the three countries. I will say this each are clean, friendly and well organzied. I will write more on Switzerland shortly. I will say this, Switzerland is the most expensive but it is well worth buying the cable car admissions and such to go to the top of the Schilthorn if the weather is good. Once in a live time to do this. I will give it more attention add to what you can do, but it really is a fully packed tour! You will enjoy it very much.

Posted by
174 posts

It's a great tour! I'll have a scrapbook up soon with all my travels and tips.

Posted by
37 posts

Hi!
I'm not on your tour, but I'm on the one that begins May 30....so immediately after you! I'm enjoying reading the responses here as they are helping me as well.
Thank you!
And original poster - enjoy your trip!!

Posted by
28 posts

I am signed up for that tour too. Have you figured out your flights and all? Will you be arriving earlier or staying after - just wondering since i am trying to figure it out. Thinking of flying into luxemboug the day before and need to leave Vienna as soon as tour is over. Anyone have suggestions for before the tour begins?

Posted by
4 posts

Yay! Its so great to hear from you!

I have. Me and a friend will be arriving into Frankfurt at 8:35am on Saturday May 13 which should give us plenty of time to get through immigration and to trier by train. We also plan on staying one extra day in Vienna after our tour ends just so we can take it any extra sights we didn't get to see during our stay in Vienna. So we will be leaving on the 27th instead of the 26th :)

Posted by
28 posts

Are you flying out of Vienna or going back to frankfort? Where are you from?