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  • Locations: Munich, Germany; Nuremberg, Germany; Stuttgart, Germany
  • Program Terms: Travel Tour
  • Dates / Deadlines
Fact Sheet:
Housing:
Hotel Type of Program: Tour
Program Description:

Cultural Tour - Germany

Mason Cultural Tour: Southern Germany - Castles and Culture of the Region!

This tour of Southern and Central Germany, and a bit of Austria, too,  is designed for many interests...visit some of the most beautiful castles in the world including the Heidelberg Castle on the Neckar River, and the Kaiserburg Castle in Nuremburg. Meanwhile, you will also discover the culture and historical details of the finest automobiles in fascinating settings: the Mercedes-Benz museum in Stuttgart is an architectural wonder, describing historical events that occurred during emerging and evolving automotive progress. You will also visit the Porsche museum in a futuristic structure which is home to an amazing collection of vintage Porsches. Then discover the medieval town of Rotenburg and finally remain for several nights in beautiful Munich. A trip to Salzburg and its underground salt mines is an adventure you won't want to miss. Back in Munich, you will enjoy the BMW "World" and have time for shopping and an enjoyable farewell dinner with your new (and old) friends.

Program Details

Dates: March 9, 2018 - March 18, 2018

Eligibility

This program is open to all members of the Mason Community including students, faculty, staff, alumni and the general public. No academic credit is awarded on Mason Cultural Tour programs.

Housing

First class hotel accommodations; double occupancy standard.
Mercure Hotel, Stuttgart (City Center), Germany
Hotel Inner City, Nuremberg, Germany
Hotel Arcona Living, Munich, Germany

Program Cost:  

  • $3,200 with airfare included
  • Single supplement, $450
Included:
  • Round-trip airfare from Dulles International Airport (IAD) 
  • 8 nights with first class accommodations
  • Tour transportation in deluxe motorcoach
  • Itinerary events and excursions as listed below
  • Breakfast daily; welcome & farewell dinners
  • Pre-Departure Orientation
  • International Emergency Insurance during tour (we highly recommend additional trip cancellation insurance)
Not Included:
  • Other transportation
  • Personal spending
  • Gratuities

Program Itinerary*

Day Activity
Day 1  (Friday, March 9)

Overnight flight from Dulles International Airport.

Day 2 (Saturday, March 10)

Arrival in Munich and transfer to Stuttgart, capital of southwest Germany’s Baden-Württemberg state. The city is known as a manufacturing hub, with Mercedes-Benz and Porsche both having headquarters here. There are also plenty of museums and green-spaces, which wrap around its center. Check into your hotel before setting off on an afternoon walking tour with your tour director. Enjoy a welcome dinner at a local restaurant. Mercure Hotel, Stuttgart.
Dinner included.

Day 3 (Sunday, March 11)

After breakfast, you’ll spend the morning touring Stuttgart. Germany is well known for its finely-engineered automobiles. Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Volkswagen all emerged from this central European country, and Stuttgart lays claim to being the origin of two such highly-regarded car manufacturers. Visit both the Mercedes Benz and Porsche Museums, located near their respective factories. The Mercedes-Benz’ museum is a nine-story exhibition in the western suburb of Untertürkheim. During your tour, you’ll see the extensive collection of over 160 vehicles and 1,5000 exhibits. Starting at the uppermost level of the museum, you’ll be transported back to the year 1886 and gradually spiral your way down through 130 years of automotive history, back to the museum exit. The Porsche Museum is in the northern Zuffenhausen neighborhood. This futuristic-looking structure displays an alternating collection of vintage Porsches. Be inspired by over 80 vehicles in this 5,600-square meter exhibition area. Evening at leisure to stroll down the pedestrian walkway and enjoy some of the shops.
Breakfast included.

Day 4 (Monday, March 12)

Leave Stuttgart and travel to Heidelberg. Enjoy a full day excursion to Heidelberg on the Neckar River in southwestern Germany. This famous college town is known for its venerable Heidelberg University, founded in the 14th-Century. Visit the historic old town and the world-famous Heidelberg Castle. The red-sandstone castle ruins, perched on the slopes of Mount Königstuhl some 70 meters above the Neckar River, are among the most important Renaissance structures north of the Alps. Heidelberg Castle, the Old Bridge across the river, and its neighboring buildings, are among the most impressive sights anywhere in Germany. Continue to Nuremberg in the afternoon for overnight stay. Hotel Inner City.
Breakfast included.

Day 5 (Tuesday, March 13)

Enjoy a buffet breakfast before heading into Nüremburg, the city of Albrecht Dürer. On January 2, 1945, this medieval city was systematically bombed by the Allied forces and about ninety percent of it was destroyed in only one hour. After the war, the city was rebuilt and restored (to some extent) to its pre-war appearance. Today, this northern Bavarian city is distinguished by its medieval architecture including fortifications and the stone towers of its Altstadt (Old Town). Wander through Old Town on the way to Kaiserburg Castle. The symbol of Nuremberg since the Middle Ages, its first fortified buildings are thought to have been erected around the year 1000. Next, visit the Hauptmarkt (central square). Make sure to stop and admire the gilded figures of the Schöner Brunnen (“beautiful fountain”). Compare the 14th-century Gothic style of the Frauenkirche to the unique combination of Gothic and Romanesque styles of St. Sebald, the oldest church in the city (originally built in 1215). You'll also visit St. Lawrence Church, which is the youngest of the three (started in 1439). Finish the day at the Germanisches National Museum, founded in 1852. It houses a vast collection of items relating to German culture and art, from prehistoric times through to the present day.
Breakfast included.

Day 6 (Wednesday, March 14)

Today you will head to Munich with a stop at Rothenburg ob der Tauber, the world-famous medieval city in the Franconia region of Bavaria, Germany. The town is believed to be named for the red color of the roofs of the houses which overlook the Tauber River, using the German words rot (red) and burg (burgh, medieval fortified settlement). In the Middle Ages, Rothenburg was Germany’s second-largest city, with a whopping population of 6,000. Today, it’s the country’s most exciting medieval town, enjoying tremendous popularity with tourists without losing its charm. There’s a thousand years of history packed between its cobbles.Continue to Munich. Check in to the Arcona Hotel in a charming neighborhood.
Breakfast included.

Day 7 (Thursday, March 15)

Enjoy breakfast at your hotel. Meet your local tour guide and enjoy a walking tour of Munich. Munich is a city of many identities: the heart of medieval "Old Europe," the beer capital of the world, a great royal capital, and the location of some very tragic history. It has inspired artists, writers, architects, musicians, scientists, more than one madman, and many visitors. Today’s tour highlights include visits to all the key historical sites, beautiful churches, and famous beer halls. Begin with a stop at the Hofbräuhaus, one of Munich’s oldest breweries. Afterward, you'll visit the colorful stalls of the Viktualien Market before seeing the architectural delights of the Royal Residence and Opera House. Finally, your group will stroll through the Odeonsplatz, a large square in central Munich, and the Maximilianstraße, a royal avenue and hub for high-end shopping. Your guide will also weave in Third Reich history in addition to Munich’s many well-kept secrets. Spend the rest of the day at your leisure.
Breakfast included.

Day 8 (Friday, March 16)

Head toward Salzburg for a morning visit to a salt mine (don’t forget warm clothing and good footwear). “White gold” has been mined at the Berchtesgaden salt mine without interruption since 1517. Explore the mine on an adventurous guided tour into the very depths of the Salzberg mountain. Before entering, your group will be outfitted in functional overalls – for good reason, since the temperatures inside the mine are a constant +12° C (53° F). Afterward, enjoy a guided visit of Salzburg. See the Fortress Hohensalzburg (from outside) and Salzburg Cathedral and, a 17th-century Baroque cathedral dedicated to Saint Rupert and Saint Vergilius. Next, visit the Old City to see the birthplace of famed composer Mozart. Here, your group can see Mozart’s childhood instruments up close.
Breakfast included.

Day 9 (Saturday, March 17)

Continue your visit of Munich with your local guide. Visit BMW Welten (no entrance) and enjoy the remainder of your day at leisure. In the evening, sit down to a farewell dinner at a local restaurant (Hofbräuhaus).
Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 10 (Sunday, March 18) Enjoy your last morning in Munich at leisure before being transferred to the Munich Airport for your return flight home.
 *The Global Education Office reserves the right to modify the tour schedule as needed

Flight Information

Washington Dulles International to Munich International Airport

Flight Number Departure Time Arrival Time
KL #652 Washington Dulles (IAD) 5:45 pm Schiphol Amsterdam (AMS) 7:00 am
KL #1793 Schiphol 9:30 am Munich International (MUC) 10:55 am

Munich International Airport to Washington Dulles International

Flight Number Departure Time Arrival Time
KL #1792 Munich International (MUC) 9:55 am Schiphol Amsterdam (AMS) 11:35 am
KL #651 Schiphol 1:00 pm Washington Dulles 4:50 pm

Travel Map

Contact Information

Cultural Tours Program Manager

Rita Rowand
rrowand1@gmu.edu
703-993-5146

Creating an Account for Mason Cultural Tours

Please consult the document below in order to apply for a Mason Cultural Tours program IF (1) you are not currently attending George Mason University and (2) have not created a profile in MasonAbroad yet:

Download

Creating an Account and Application for Mason Cultural Tours [PDF]

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Travel Tour 2017 10/02/2016
**
Rolling Admission TBA TBA
Travel Tour 2018 10/15/2017 ** Rolling Admission 03/10/2018 03/18/2018

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed