Discover the best of Germany and France with this 11-day itinerary. From Berlin's historic landmarks to the stunning beauty of the French countryside and the charming streets of Paris, this itinerary is packed with activities, day trips, and delicious meals. Follow along for detailed daily plans and travel times for each destination.
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On arrival at the airport in Berlin, meet your private guide, who will escort you to your cozy hotel. Spend the day exploring the city on foot, visiting famous landmarks like the Brandenburg Gate and Checkpoint Charlie. Stop for lunch at a traditional German beer hall before continuing your explorations. Enjoy the evening shopping scene at the nearby local markets and shop for German souvenirs. Return to your hotel for a delicious dinner and rest.
Embark on a full-day city tour of Berlin, starting with a visit to the Reichstag Building, which offers stunning views of the city below. Continue to the Berlin Wall Memorial and Museum Island, home to some of the most famous museums in the world. In the evening, enjoy a traditional German dinner.
Take a day trip to Potsdam, a beautiful city just outside Berlin. Explore the many picturesque parks and palaces that dot the landscape, including the famous Sanssouci and New Palace. Sample some local cuisine at a traditional restaurant before returning to Berlin in the evening.
Take a train from Berlin to Cologne, a scenic four-hour drive. The vibrant city is located in western Germany. Check into your accommodation and go on a guided walking tour to landmarks like the Cologne Cathedral and the Hohenzollern Bridge. Enjoy a traditional lunch at a local restaurant and then rest at your hotel. In the evening, stroll through the trendy Belgian Quarter, where you can shop at boutiques and enjoy coffee at a local cafe.
Embark on a full-day city tour of Cologne, starting with a visit to the Museum Ludwig, which houses one of the largest collections of modern art in Europe, and marvel at the vast array of contemporary and modern masterpieces from artists like Picasso, Warhol, and Lichtenstein. Continue to the Roman-Germanic Museum and the Chocolate Museum, two of the most famous museums in the city. In the evening, Take a scenic boat tour along the Rhine river to see the illuminated beauty of Cologne at night. While on board, enjoy a glass of Klsch beer, a traditional local brew, before returning to your hotel.
After breakfast, take a trip to the Klner Zoo. The zoo is home to over 10,000 animals of 700 species, including elephants, gorillas, and koalas. For an extra special experience, sign up for a behind-the-scenes tour with one of the zookeepers. They will take you to areas of the zoo that are not open to the public and give you a glimpse into what it's like to care for the animals. After a full day of Zoo exploration, end the day on a high note, head to the Old Town district, and experience a traditional German-style dinner. Choose from various local specialties like schnitzel, bratwurst, or sauerbraten. Top it all off with a local brew, and enjoy a traditional German restaurant's warm and cozy atmosphere.
As you ride the train from Cologne to Paris (a five-hour journey), take in the breathtaking views of the French countryside. Admire the rolling hills, fields of sunflowers, and quaint villages as they pass by. Check into your luxury Parisian accommodation and hit the ground running with a walking tour of the city's iconic landmarks. Start at the Eiffel Tower, a must-see attraction in Paris. Take in the views of the city from the top of the tower, or marvel at its beauty from the ground. Next, head to the Arc de Triomphe, a massive monument at the end of the Champs-lyses. Take a moment to reflect on the history of the memorial, which was built to honor those who fought and died for France during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Stop at a traditional French brasserie at lunchtime to sample some local cuisine.
Try a classic dish like coq au vin, steak frites, or escargot with a glass of delicious French wine. Continue your exploration of the city by visiting the Louvre Museum, home to some of the world's most famous artists, including the Mona Lisa. After admiring the artwork, stroll through the Tuileries Garden, a beautiful public park just outside the museum. In the evening, head to a rooftop bar to take in the views of the city and enjoy a drink. Try a glass of Champagne, a local specialty, and savor the ambiance of Paris at night. End the day with a delicious dinner at a local bistro, and enjoy the city's lively atmosphere.
Embark on a full-day city tour of Paris, starting with a visit to the Louvre Museum, home to some of the most famous artworks in the world. Continue on to the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Sainte-Chapelle, two of the most important landmarks in the city. In the evening, enjoy a traditional French dinner.
Begin your day by hopping on the train from Paris to Versailles, just a short 30-minute ride. Once you arrive, head straight to the Palace of Versailles, a stunning example of French architecture and opulence. Take a guided tour and learn about the history of the palace, which was once the residence of the French royal family. Wander through the magnificent gardens, which feature beautiful fountains, sculptures, and well-manicured lawns. Visit the Petit Trianon, a smaller palace that was once the private residence of Queen Marie Antoinette. For a unique and memorable experience, try a hot air balloon ride over the palace and surrounding countryside. As you float gently through the air, take in the stunning views and experience a one-of-a-kind perspective of the palace and gardens.
After a morning of exploration, stop for lunch at a local restaurant and sample some of the traditional French cuisines. Try a dish like escargot, coq au vin, or boeuf bourguignon, paired with a glass of delicious French wine. In the afternoon, head to Versailles to explore the local markets and shops. Visit the Marche Notre Dame, a bustling market filled with fresh produce, meats, cheeses, and baked goods. Or, head to the nearby town of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, known for its quaint cobblestone streets and charming cafes. As the sun begins to set, make your way back to Paris and enjoy a delicious dinner at a local restaurant. Savor the flavors of French cuisine one last time before your journey comes to a close.
Take a two-hour train to enjoy a full-day trip to Normandy, a beautiful region in northwestern France. Explore the picturesque towns and villages that dot the landscape, including Honfleur and Bayeux. Learn about the region's history at the D-Day beaches and the Bayeux Tapestry Museum. Return to Paris in the evening and enjoy a meal at a local bistro.
On your final day, visit a local market to stock up on souvenirs or gifts, and enjoy one last meal at a Parisian restaurant before heading to the airport with your private guide to catch your flight back home.