IN GERMANY, modern and medieval sit side by side.
The country has a rich history and is home to innovative architecture, enchanting forests, beer halls and delicious comfort food.
You can explore the delights of Deutschland on a 20-night Prague, Berlin, Scandinavia and St Petersburg escorted cruise organised by Travelrite and The Senior newspaper next year.
First stop is the Czech Republic capital of Prague. There are two days to explore the city’s famous castle district and Old Town Square.
The German adventure begins in Dresden, visiting the historical city centre and seeing the Theatre Square, The Zwinger, the Royal Palace, the Church of Our Lady, the Royal Cathedral, Royal Mews and the Procession of Princes.
A highlight is the spectacular Frauenkirche. The church was reduced to rubble after Allied forces bombed Dresden in World War II, but an extensive restoration project in 1990 saw the church rebuilt to its former glory.
Then it’s on to Berlin, with three days set aside to explore the German capital and surrounds, including the museums and modern architecture, as well as the Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie and the Reichstag.
Also on the agenda is a journey to Sanssouci.
This is the former summer palace of Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, in Potsdam, near Berlin.
The group will tour the palace and have time to enjoy the vast gardens, including the Sicilian and the Nordic gardens. The Marly Garden (Marlygarten), awash with flowers, blossoming shrubs and statues, is contrasted by the more sombre atmosphere of the Friedensgarten.
After bidding auf wiedersehen to Berlin, it’s off to Warnemunde port to board the Regal Princess and set sail for beautiful Scandinavia.
The new ship is a spectacular example of the next generation of innovative Princess ships, with a breathtaking atrium and piazza and The SeaWalk, a dramatic glass-bottom walkway.
First port of call is Oslo in Norway, followed by the Danish capital, Copenhagen, where travellers will take in sights including Amalienborg Palace, home of the royal family since 1794, the Royal Theatre and Charlottenborg, a 17th century Dutch baroque palace.
A full day will be spent exploring the Swedish capital Stockholm, often referred to as the Venice of the North because of its many waterways and archipelago to the east.
It’s then on to Helsinki in Finland to take in a host of city delights before steering a course for St Petersburg.
Top of the sightseeing list are the Catherine Palace and its gardens, and the amazing Peterhof Palace which sits atop a hill overlooking the Gulf of Finland.
The final port is Tallinn in Estonia, where the group will have a guided visit to the city centre and learn about its history from the middle ages to its 1991 independence from the Soviet Union, and how it is adapting to a western-style economy.
After a relaxing final day at sea, the ship will dock at Warnemunde with travellers transferred to Hamburg for the return flight to Australia.
The Prague, Berlin, Scandinavia and St Petersburg tour has two 2019 departures – July 5 or August 7.
Prices start from $8995 per person, twin share, and include return airfares from Australia to Europe, accommodation and sightseeing.
Details – 1800-630-343, or go to Travelrite and look under Senior Escorted Cruises.