Day 1 - After joining your holiday coach, travel to Dover for the short sea crossing to Calais. Then continue into Germany for your overnight stop in the Dortmund area. Bed & Breakfast.
Day 2 - A big travel day today as you head to the city of Wroclaw, full of charm and appeal. Poland's fourth largest city has a unique architectural and cultural make-up having been influences by Bohemia, Austria and Prussia. Overnight in the 4* Haston City Hotel with a welcome drink, dinner, bed & breakfast.
Days 3 - Built on several islands, the unique character of Wroclaw is due in part to its long and entangled history with its neighbours and was only returned to Polish rule at the end of WWII. The Old Town boasts a huge market square, gothic churches, scenic waterways and lush parks. You can join a local guide who will show you the sights on an optional guided tour of Wroclaw before departing for Krakow for your 4-night stay at the Hotel Swing with welcome drink. Dinner, bed & breakfast. Porterage is included here.
Day 4 - Enjoy a guided tour of Krakow's Jewish Quarter this morning to gain more insight into the tragedy of 20th century and to see how this area has been revitalised in 21st century. A visit to the Remuh Synagogue is included. Time at leisure to explore - perhaps a visit to the museum housed in Oskar Schindler's former enamel factory (not included) or a meander through the magnificent Cloth Hall, arguably the world's oldest shopping mall or a visit to Wawel Castle, a potent symbol of the country's national identity. There will also be the opportunity to join an optional excursion to the UNESCO listed Wieliczka Salt Mines with its amazing chambers chiselled out of rock salt. Dinner, bed & breakfast. (NB may operate with a local coach).
Day 5 - A morning of reflection with an included visit to Auschwitz, the authentically preserved memorial, consisting of two parts - Auschwitz 1 and Auschwitz 11 - Birkenau. The included entrance and guided tour makes it possible to understand this unique place more fully and the enormity of what happened here. Return to the hotel for dinner, bed & breakfast.
Day 6 - A full day to the very south of the country into the foothills of the Tatra Mountains and Poland's most well-known mountain resort, Zakopane. Together with a local guide discover why the town became so popular with artists, writers and composers in the early part of 20th century and marvel at the truly delightful wooden villas. Enjoy the inviting cafes and taverns or perhaps a ride on the Gubalowka Hill Funicular (not included).
Day 7 - Head off today as you bid farewell to Poland and head to the dramatic city of Dresden on the banks of the Elbe and your centrally located overnight hotel, 4* Maritim Dresden. Bed & breakfast. (NB September tour stays at 4* Westin Bellevue Dresden).
Day 8 - You may like to join the optional Dresden walking tour this morning to discover the secrets of this revitalised city, which was so badly damaged during WW2. The restoration is phenomenal and Dresden, 'Florence on the Elbe' is once again a magnificent 'jewel', full of rococo and baroque architecture and opulent buildings, not least the astounding Frauenkirche, the Zwinger Palace and the Semper Opera House. Continue on to the final overnight in the Dortmund area. Bed & breakfast.
Day 9 - After breakfast, travel back through France to Calais for the return to England.