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The Southern Trail

Tour Length
21 days
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Tour ends

 
 

Price

 
28 Apr 2015
18 May 2015
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£1315
 
12 May 2015
01 Jun 2015
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£1345
 
26 May 2015
15 Jun 2015
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£1375
 
16 Jun 2015
06 Jul 2015
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07 Jul 2015
27 Jul 2015
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28 Jul 2015
17 Aug 2015
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£1445
 
16 Aug 2015
05 Sep 2015
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£1405
 
21 Aug 2015
10 Sep 2015
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£1405
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Overview Reviews
21 days
Accommodation:
Camping
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ See reviews
Tour Map

You will visit: France, Spain, Monaco, Italy, Vatican City, Greece

Always wanted to see the hotspots of Western Europe but thought you couldn't afford it? Think again because this 21 day camping tour shows you everything you've been reading about in those travel guides and more. From Paris to Barcelona, Rome to Athens. And really, what better way to see the world than the original Contiki way. Just you, a bunch of new friends, a tent and a taste for adventure.

Top Offers & Trip Notes

Photo from The Southern Trail Photo from The Southern Trail Photo from The Southern Trail Photo from The Southern Trail Photo from The Southern Trail Photo from The Southern Trail

Itinerary + Inclusions & ME Time Optionals

ME Time Optionals

ME Time optionals will take your trip to a whole new level with unforgettable experiences unique to the places you visit. See more, do more, live more & go home completely regret-free. Costs for these aren’t included in your tour cost & are payable to your Trip Manager in local currency.

Inclusions

On our trips we don't just take you to the destinations, we make sure you get under the skin of every place you visit. From amazing food & accommodation, to exclusive access to incredible experiences, with Contiki you'll get unbeatable value & a completely unique travel experience.

1 London to Paris

Meet up with your fellow travellers and Contiki team as you start your adventure. Your Tour Manager knows all the ins and outs of where you’re going and your tour’s own On-road Cook will make sure you get big portions of tasty meals, made from fresh, local produce.

Then we hit the road and take a ferry past the White Cliffs of Dover. We travel via World War I battlefields in the Valley of the Somme to Paris.

Once we have set up camp we will depart for the 'Tour of Illuminations', where the French capital transforms into the "City of Lights". Lamp-lit bridges and cool little cafés give us a real taste of Paris’ romance. Your Tour Manager will fill you in on the world’s most recognised monuments like the Arc de Triomphe, Eiffel Tower, Louvre, Notre Dame Cathedral - and the magnificent Champs-Élysées. Oui, oui, Paris!

Twin Share Tent Dinner

  • See the White Cliffs of Dover
  • Exclusive 'Paris by Night' sightseeing tour
  • See the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre, the Champs-Élysées, and Notre Dame Cathedral
2-3 Paris

This town is loaded with possibilities. Discover its many bistros, museums, tree-lined avenues and diverse quartiers (neighbourhoods).

Get a feel for French flair by window shopping on the Left Bank, step into the Notre Dame Cathedral or explore the endless galleries of the Louvre and get up close to the famous Mona Lisa. Try indulging in some delicious pastries and relax in one of Paris’ many green spaces.

Time in Paris includes a trip out to France’s most well-known château: Versailles, once home to ‘the Sun King’ Louis XIV, and hot spot of the French Revolution. Check out the impressive exterior of this extravagant palace. Then there’s an opportunity to explore the former royal family’s luxurious living quarters.

Treat yourself to a real Parisian night out, starting with an optional dinner in an atmospheric restaruant, where you can get to know your group. Then sign up for an authentic cabaret experience, complete with can-can girls and Champagne.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Breakfast,Dinner

  • See Château Versailles (entrance not included)
  • Parisian Dinner
    Euro 35.50
  • Nouvelle Eve cabaret show
    Euro 80.00
4 Paris to Lyon

Southbound, we roll on through Burgundy’s wine country, past Beaujolais’ green hills and vineyards, and onward to our overnight stop in Lyon. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site and a city soaked in history - as well as being the gastronomic capital of France!

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner

5 Lyon to Barcelona

Today, we head south through the rugged and dramatic scenery of the Pyrénées mountains, over the border into Barcelona.

A sizzling, festive capital any night of the week, Barcelona is all about action. In Spain fiesta time starts late, so settle in at one of Barcelona’s many outdoor squares to enjoy a glass of sangria and nibble on tapas (plate-sized snacks), before a fun night out exploring the city’s nightlife with your new friends.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner

6 Barcelona

First stop: Montjuic. The hilltop has full-blown vistas of the city and it’s where we stop to check out the 1992 Olympic Games complex. Afterwards, get a look into Spanish architect Gaudi’s wild imagination with his Art Nouveau masterpiece, the Sagrada Família church. Your Trip Manager walks you through the cobbled lanes of Barcelona’s oldest district, the Gothic Quarter.

There’s free time to discover more of Barcelona’s creative core. Pick up some quirky buys in the side streets or hit the big label shops on Plaça de Catalunya. Take in all of Barcelona’s buzzing street life on the tree-lined La Rambla – a boulevard packed with street performers, artists, shops and stalls.

Other ideas for your afternoon off include hanging out in the colourful gardens of Parc Güell or kicking back with the locals on the beach and taking a swim in the Mediterranean sea. For lunch, there’s plenty of delicious local seafood to try as well as Spain’s signature dish, paella.

Wrap up your time in this hot city with an optional flamenco dance show for a closer look into Spanish culture. Get some tips on regional food from your Trip Manager and head to one of the excellent local restaurants to try out the flavours of Catalan cuisine, like crema catalana (caramalised custard), cargos a la llauna (cooked snails) and the fantastic Rioja wine! Afterward, hit the pumping clubs of Port Olympico, by the water.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast

  • See Gaudi's Sagrada Família & the 1992 Olympic Games complex
  • Walking tour of Barcelona's Gothic Quarter
  • Flamenco evening show
    Euro 30.00
7 Barcelona to French Riviera

Unwind on the coach and take in the rustic beauty of Provence, known for its pretty landscapes of lavender, sunflowers and wild herbs. A stop for lunch in Arles means a look at the ancient Roman Arena and at a typical provincial French town.

It’s back on the road to the rugged coast line of the stunning Côte d’Azur. Follow the beautiful sapphire waters past the movie-star glamour of Cannes (famous for its annual film festival), to Antibes.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner

  • Visit the historic city of Arles
  • Scenic drive along the Côte d'Azur
8 French Riviera

Next stop on the Riviera and home to the French perfume industry is Fragonard perfumery. Learn about how perfume is made and some of its more surprising ingredients. It’s also a chance to pick up a bottle or 2 at great prices.

In your free time live a bit of the lifestyle with a visit to the local markets. Try out the region’s produce like lavender honey, aioli (garlic mayonnaise) and mouth-watering rosé wine.

Window shop the chic boutiques or choose a beach and catch some sun among all the bronzed bodies!

Tonight get a taste of the high life in Monaco, the glamorous principality packed into just 1.92km² and home to the Formula 1. Get the inside story on the royal family and their place of residence from your Trip Manager. Try your luck at a casino later on!

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner

  • Visit a French perfumery
  • See the Royal Palace in Monaco
  • Rub shoulders with the rich & famous with a visit to a Monte Carlo casino
9 French Riviera to Venice

Onwards to Italy and Verona, another UNESCO World Heritage site. Get romantic and stand under one of the world’s most famous shrines to love, Juliet’s balcony from Romeo and Juliet. Check out the main shopping street and the Roman arena, before heading on to Venice.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner

  • See Juliet's Balcony and the Roman Arena
10 Venice

Venice is packed with character - crammed with hidden lanes and linked by a network of canals.

The group travels on our private boat through the waters of the lagoon to visit the city’s historical heart. The limestone Bridge of Sighs, the Gothic arches of the Doge's Palace and the expanse of St. Mark’s Square (pigeons and all!) show off Venice’s unique beauty and way of life.

Take some time to explore the floating city and lose yourself in the backstreets. There’s an optional walking tour where you can discover the labyrinth of interweaving lanes, waterways, palaces, piazzi and markets with our Local Guide. You’ll see historic monuments, hidden treasures and the Rialto market - a local favourite for food shopping.

Maybe grab a table on St. Mark’s Square and eat some delicious Italian food al fresco.

Cap off the day with an optional gondola ride & share this amazing experience with your friends - seeing Venice from on the water is unforgettable!

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner

  • Private boat through the canals & islands of Venice
  • See the Bridge of Sighs, the Doge's Palace & St. Mark's Square
  • See Venice's iconic canals & gondolas
  • Venice walking tour
    Euro 11.00
  • Gondola ride
    Euro 22.00
11 Venice to Florence

Wind through the Apennine Mountains and Tuscan countryside to the Renaissance city of Florence, with a stop at the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa.

The scene-stealing Duomo Cathedral rises above Florence, which serves up frescoes, markets and priceless art. After dinner, walk along the River Arno with your Trip Manager, take in the atmosphere and head into the heart of Florence, where you can sit back and relax Tuscan style with a glass of Chianti wine.

Twin Share Tent Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner,Breakfast,Dinner

  • See the Leaning Tower of Pisa
12 Florence

Jump start the day uncovering this open-air museum and its UNESCO World Heritage city centre.

Our Local Guide gives you the inside track as the group learns about Florence’s cultural beginnings and explores streets crammed with artworks from masters like Michelangelo. Then take a look into a skillful demonstration of Florentine leather making and understand this region’s traditional art.

With bargains and bustle, the city’s markets are a great place to hang out. Grab a gelato and enjoy this gorgeous city.

Tonight, there’s a choice of a group dinner – an authentic Tuscan feast. Try regional dishes in the heart of Florence. Then keep it moving with a night out and get your groove on at Florence’s biggest club.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast

  • Discover the Secrets of Michelangelo's Florence – see where his David was gifted to the Florentines, Ponte Vecchio, the Medici Palace & much more on our locally guided walking tour of Florence
  • See the Duomo, Basilica Santa Croce, Giotto's Bell Tower, the Baptistry & Piazza della Signoria
  • Learn about Florence's leather craft with a demonstration
  • Souvenir group photo
    Euro 11.00
  • Tuscan Dinner
    Euro 29.00
  • Space Electronic Disco
    Euro 16.00
13 Florence to Rome

Travel through Tuscany’s rustic hills, past the recognisable cypress tree landscapes of this olive oil-producing region, to vibrant Rome.

Stylish Rome oozes energy and overflows with relics from another age. Our special access coach tour gets you right into the thriving atmosphere of this living timeline as your Tour Manager shows you the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia. Continue on foot to check out the Pantheon and Piazza Navona. Honour tradition at the Trevi Fountain and throw a coin in the fountain’s waters (it’s meant to improve your chances of returning to Rome!) or maybe hang out with your new friends at the Spanish Steps, sit back with a few slices of pizza and people watch.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast

  • Special access Rome sightseeing coach tour
  • See the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, Piazza Venezia, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon & Piazza Navona
  • See St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City
14 Rome

This morning, make the most of our Local Guide’s inside knowledge with an optional guided tour of the Vatican Museums, including the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica.

Take off into the city and absorb the atmosphere, as Vespas flash past timeworn monuments that are surrounded by fountains, pizzerias, cafés and bars. Before you hit the shops, let your Tour Manager point you in the right direction with some tips on the best buys.

In your free time, live the local lifestyle by indulging in a long lunch on a paved piazza or knock back a shot of espresso at the bar, like the Romans do.

Twin Share Tent

  • Vatican Tour
    Euro 34.00
15 Rome to Sorrento

From Naples, it’s a boat ride to the main marina of the Isle of Capri. Soak up the views and head off with some friends into the cute, white-washed villages where you could try out the region’s sweet lemon liqueur, limoncello.

Set on sheer slopes, Sorrento doles up sweeping views over the Bay of Naples. There’s free time tonight to explore Sorrento’s web of narrow streets. Find a little local restaurant where you can eat Italian-style, right in the heart of this knock-out location.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast

  • Day trip by boat to the Isle of Capri
  • Scenic drive along the coast
16 Sorrento to Corfu

Then there’s time to chill out on the coach, crossing through the rugged landscapes of southern Italy, before boarding the overnight ferry to Greece. Check out the amazing 360 degree views from the deck!

Overnight Cruise Breakfast

  • Scenic drive along the coast
  • Pompeii Guided Walking Tour
    Euro 19.50
17-19 Corfu

Corfu is all that’s great about Greek island living and with our fantastic campsite location, you only have to walk down a short pathway to get to the beach. You’ll immediately find yourself on “local time”, browsing the markets of the UNESCO World Heritage listed old town and bargaining with the laid-back locals.

Jump on board the Captains Cruise optional with a bunch friends for a fun day out on the water. It will give you another angle on idyllic Corfu. Work up an appetite swimming in the secluded spots and then feast on a lunch of olives, salad, cheeses, fresh bread and dips.

Corfu also gives you the chance to dive into action with a selection of water sports, like parasailing, banana-boating and waterskiing. Otherwise hire a car for a deeper look into Corfu and venture across the island to explore some beautiful, remote beaches.

While you’re here, why not take part in our fun toga theme party!

Twin Share Tent Twin Share Tent Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Breakfast,Dinner,Breakfast

  • See the Venetian fortress in Corfu's old town
  • Captains Cruise of Corfu
    Euro 36.00
  • Ionian Dinner Experience
    Euro 33.00
  • Water sports Corfu
    From Euro 18.00 - 50.00
  • Car Hire
    Euro 65 - 200
  • Tour t-shirts
    From Euro 20.00 - 30.00
20 Corfu to Athens

From Corfu, head to the mainland and travel to the impressive, man-made Corinth Canal.

Athens is next, a city crammed with myth and ancient wonders, and busy with modern, urban soul.

Twin Share Tent Breakfast,Dinner

  • See the Corinth Canal
21 Depart Athens

Step back in time in Europe’s oldest city to the birthplace of democracy. Get the run down on the Parthenon and the Acropolis from our Local Guide, as you wander around the marble columns perched above the city sprawl. Then we check out the first modern Olympic Stadium from the 1896 Games.

The trip winds down in the heart of the city at Syntagma Square, home to the Greek Parliament. Make the most of a last look at the Parthenon before you farewell your friends.

Breakfast

  • Learn about the birthplace of modern society on a guided tour of Athens & the Acropolis
  • Visit the Acropolis & Parthenon with a local guide
  • See the first modern Olympic Stadium

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What's Included

All of this & more, included as standard on your trip.

Accommodation

  • 19 nights accommodation: 19 nights in twin-share tents (including air mattresses), +1 night on board a ferry
  • Modern, air-conditioned coach with powerpoints for charging
  • Ferry crossings

Team

  • An experienced & professional Trip Manager, Driver & Cook team
  • Contiki’s exclusive on-site teams at Contiki Villages
  • Sightseeing tours of all major cities plus orientations in all other destinations

Food

  • 20 breakfasts
  • 12 dinners

Inclusions

  • 13 World Heritage Sites visited
  • See the White Cliffs of Dover
  • Exclusive 'Paris by Night' sightseeing tour
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Me Time

  • Parisian Dinner
  • Nouvelle Eve cabaret show
See More

On a budget?

  • The average cost per day for this tour is £62
  • You only need a £60 deposit to book and pay in full 45 days before you travel.
  • Pay in instalments, with Contiki Part Pay