A Musical Interlude in Berlin


Immerse yourself in Berlin's musical heritage, history and artistic ambitions as you explore the city and enjoy private performances. 

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 Brandenburg Gate, Berlin  Berliner Dom, Berlin  Berliner Dom, Berlin  Schloss Charlottenburg, Berlin  Schloss Charlottenburg, Berlin  Chorin, Berlin
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Throughout its history, Berlin has been the heart of musical tradition in North Germany. Eighteenth-century Berlin was considered the “Golden Age” for music making (corresponding with the coronation of Frederick II, himself a musician), and many important musical figures have lived and worked in this dynamic city, including Johann Joachim Quantz, Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, and Richard Strauss. In the 20th century, the fall of the wall turned Berlin into one of the most musically endowed places in the world --orchestras previously divided between east and west were now merged under the banner of one, unified city. This special program thoroughly immerses travelers in Berlin's musical heritage, history, and artistic ambitions with a six-night exploration of the city, its landmarks, and the opportunity to enjoy private performances by superbly talented chamber musicians, played at historic venues. Berliners hold a deep cultural connection with classical music, and on this program, travelers will join in the appreciation of this musical tradition to gain an entirely new perspective on a world-class city.

Itinerary

May 2-3, 2015 — U.S., Berlin, Germany

Depart the U.S. for Berlin, Germany. Arrive in Berlin and transfer to the Westin Grand Berlin (or similar). (D)

May 4 — Berlin: Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie, Berliner Dom

This morning enjoy a guided tour of this historic, elegant, stately, yet youthful, bold and lively city, including: the Brandenburg Gate, once the symbol of a divided Germany, and now the epitome of a united nation; Checkpoint Charlie, the main crossing point in the Berlin Wall for non-Germans; the reconstructed Reichstag Parliament; and the neo-Renaissance Berliner Dom, Berlin's Cathedral, once the court church of the Hohenzollerns. Continue exploring Berlin on your own this afternoon. Enjoy our first concert this evening. (B)

May 5 — Berlin: Pergamon Museum, Jewish Museum 

Visit the famed Pergamon Museum spending the morning exploring its unrivalled collection of ancient art and architecture, including the Pergamon Altar, the Gate of Miletus and the Ishtar Gate. Later visit the Jewish Museum, located on historic Potsdamer Platz, which traces the history and contributions of German Jews, including a poignant exhibit on the Holocaust. Even before entering the museum, the architecture of this modern structure embodies the varied experience of the Jewish people in Germany. The afternoon is at leisure to continued exploring this wonderful city on your own. (B)

May 6 — Berlin, Chorin, Berlin 

The Gemaldegalerie, part of the Berlin State Museums, is our destination this morning. Home to one of the world's greatest collections of European paintings from the 13th to the 18th centuries, this vast collection includes work by such renowned artists as Albrecht Durer, Hans Holbein, Raphael, Caravaggio, Rubens, and Vermeer. This afternoon travel to the small town of Chorin, about 35 miles outside of Berlin, to visit the Kloster Chorin. Founded as a Cistercian monastery in the 13th century, the abbey is considered to be one of the finest Gothic red-brick buildings in northern Germany. Enjoy a concert in a historical venue. (B)

May 7 — Berlin, Potsdam, Berlin

Today enjoy a full-day excursion Potsdam, home to marvelous 17th-century palaces built by Frederick the Great, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and host to the historic Potsdam Conference in 1945 which set the stage for the division of Europe following WWII. Our visit includes: the fantastical Rococo Sansouci Palace and Park; the English country manor styled Cecilienhof Palace, where the Potsdam Conference took place; and view the Charlottenhof Palace, modeled after a Roman villa. (B, L)

May 8 — Berlin: Schloss Charlottenburg

In the morning visit Schloss Charlottenburg, the largest palace in Berlin, and the only former royal residence remaining in Berlin. This palace is an eclectic amalgamation of Baroque and Rococo styles and is surrounded by large formal and informal gardens and woodlands in the Baroque style. Spend the afternoon at leisure, and enjoy our last concert this evening. (B)

May 9 — Berlin, U.S.

Transfer to the airport for flights to the U.S. (B)