Archive for Austria Tours

August 6

For tours in Germany or in Europe in 2015 –

New and return clients are making their reservations now for tours in Europe in 2015 and yes, even as far ahead as 2016. Remember, all of the tours arranged and led by European Focus are custom-designed and built one at a time for each client or set of clients. No mix and match, no big bus, no incompatible strangers and best of all, no ‘take it or leave it’ itinerary! We work with you to create the perfect trip for you, and just you. (Even if your ‘group’ is just two people, this is our normal tour size!) Contact us today to start planning your trip of a lifetime.

Our 2012 Volkswagen 'Multivan' Highline edition has all of the bells and whistles for your ultimate comfort on the highways and byways of Europe.

Our 2012 Volkswagen ‘Multivan’ Highline edition has all of the bells and whistles for your ultimate comfort on the highways and byways of Europe.

Our Schedule for 2014 is Nearly Full

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

January 15

Want to go to Europe on a private tour but depressed to see that your choice of dates are already booked?

Our busy schedule does not mean you cannot have the pleasure of a private, custom-designed tour in Germany, Austria or Switzerland this year. Through our partnership with a reputable company we can offer our services to you in the heart of Europe through these trusted partners. Contact us for details.

Plan Your Perfect Trip to Europe

Friday, December 13th, 2013

With expert help from the seasoned guides of European Focus Private Tours. We work with singles, couples, families and groups of friends who have common interests. Best of all, your tour is led by the designer! No fumbling around, no getting lost, no wondering what hotel to use or where to eat or what to do with your precious vacation time. We take all of the unknowns out of travel and eliminate the thousands of details which go into a fun, stress-free vacation. All you have to do is get onto the airplane and let us take care of the rest. Booking now for 2014 and beyond.

A busy father and his two sons enjoyed a stress-free vacation in Germany and France in July, leaving the planning to us while they carried on busy lives and careers back home in Oklahoma.

A busy father and his two sons enjoyed a stress-free vacation in Germany and France in July, leaving the planning to us while they carried on busy lives and careers back home in Oklahoma.

2014 calendar update

Friday, November 22nd, 2013

Updated January 15, 2014

Thinking of a dream trip to Europe?

So are these people. And, they have made their reservations already for travel in 2014. Don’t wait to fulfill your dreams of easy and relaxed travel in Europe.

April 11 to 25: Tour for two, renewal of vows in Italy, first time clients Steve and Debbie with James
April 20 to May 3: Tour for two, second time for our clients Dan and Amanda, who traveled in Germany with us in 2012. This time it is Italy. (Jenean’s tour)
May 1 to 19: Second tour for Peter and Gayle, who toured in Germany with us in 2013. This time it is parts of France and Spain with both James and Jenean leading the way from Paris to Santiago de Compostela

Carol, left and Art, right will join us again this year for a trip, this time, to southern Portugal and southern Spain.

Carol, left and Art, right will join us again this year for a trip, this time, to southern Portugal and southern Spain.


May 22 to June 6: Seventh trip for Art and Carol who toured with us most recently in Spain and Portugal in 2013. This time it will be other areas in Portugal and southern Spain with James and Jenean.
June 17 to 29: Dennis comes back for more family history research, this time in Denmark, Sweden and Norway. His first trip with European Focus was in 2013 and it was concentrated on Germany. Dennis first took our business card in 1998. (James’ tour)
June 18 to 26: Family of four starting in Paris where they will meet Jenean, continuing on to Strasbourg, Lucerne and Munich.
June 28 to July 12: Tour with a family of four starting in London and continuing on to Normandy, Reims and on to Germany where we will retrace some of the steps taken by the parents of two of the members of this group during their time in Germany decades ago. The trip ends in Munich. This will be the first European Focus Private Tour for these Texans. Jenean starts the tour and James meets the group in Normandy.
July 16 to 28: Tour with a family of four from Tucson to Germany and Austria, the Czech Republic. This will be Tim’s third tour with European Focus. James will lead this tour.
August 5-13: A couple come for their first trip with European Focus in Germany, mainly visiting ancestral villages.
August 25 to September 5: John comes on his second tour with us, this time in England on a combination ancestral discovery tour and honeymoon. (James and Jenean)
October 4 to 19: Pat and his wife come from Australia for their first tour with European Focus in Germany. Part of the tour will concentrate on family history and part will be slow travel tourism. Pat will meet with relatives in Berlin, who will travel there from Poland.
(James will lead this tour)
October 20: Mariane C. fulfills a lifelong dream of visiting the village of Appenzell, Switzerland. James will pick her up at her hotel in Lucerne and take her to nearby Appenzell for the day. The timing just works perfectly for this long-awaited journey. She will be ending a river cruise a few days before in Basel.
November 23 to December 3: A family of nine comes over to visit some Christmas Markets (starting on Nov 28) and other places of interest which the patriarch of the family enjoyed during his time in the service in the 1960s. This tour will be led by Jenean and James.

Available dates are in July, August and September plus the last part of October and first part of November for trips led by James or Jenean. For trips in Germany, Austria and Switzerland we can accommodate you through our partners, ask for available dates.

Through the Tyrol to Berchtesgaden

Thursday, October 17th, 2013

October 17 from a visit on October 12

The morning after the big snow which blanketed the region around Innsbruck, Austria with more than 10 inches of snow dawned bright and cold with just a little morning fog which had lifted by the time we were ready to begin our journey from Lans to Berchtesgaden. What a visual treat ahead! Snow-covered mountains, roofs heavy with fresh, white snow and best of all, dry roads on which to travel. We zipped around urban Innsbruck and headed east, up and over the mountains at Worgl and on past St. Johann in Tyrol, passing numerous ski resorts along the way. We even saw people golfing out on one course, cleared of snow, with huge alpine peaks hovering overhead. On we drove past Reit im Winkel and to our home base for the next three nights, a spa hotel in pastureland outside of Berchtesgaden, Germany.

The church of Lans, Austria across from our lodge. This was taken the evening after the big snow.

The church of Lans, Austria across from our lodge. This was taken the evening after the big snow.

Jim and Denise go for a walk down the side of a mountain near Kitzbuehl

Jim and Denise go for a walk down the side of a mountain near Kitzbuehl

This homeowner has decorated using an old wagon wheel along with potted flowers near Kitzbuehl

This homeowner has decorated using an old wagon wheel along with potted flowers near Kitzbuehl

Walking in the woods near Ramsau, Germany

Walking in the woods near Ramsau, Germany

Denise and Jim enjoying the beautiful weather and scenery near St. Johann in Tyrol

Denise and Jim enjoying the beautiful weather and scenery near St. Johann in Tyrol

A Snowy Surprise in Tyrol, Austria

Friday, October 11th, 2013

October 11

We woke this morning at our lodge in the hamlet of Lans to about ten inches of new snow covering every surface and filling the surrounding pines with a heavy layer of white. It was the perfect morning for a drawn out, lazy breakfast followed by some organizing in the room before we set out at about 11:30 for a laundry errand in Innsbruck. By then, the traffic accidents resulting from too many drivers attempting the conditions with summer tires had been cleared. Workers were busy removing limbs from trees, still heavy with leaves, which had fallen due to the heavy, wet snow. Austrians are just as surprised as we are. According to our innkeeper, it is a month too early for this kind of snow. But, being visitors with no obligations, we enjoyed it immensely.
A late lunch in a cozy, tucked away bistro followed by some shopping at an enclosed market hall with tastings of cheese followed by a glass of red wine while taking in the stunning panorama of snow-bedecked mountains rising sharply behind Innsbruck’S colorful 16th and 15th century houses.
You couldn’t plan a day like this.

Surprise! We woke to more than ten inches of fresh snow on top of everything, including our touring van

Surprise! We woke to more than ten inches of fresh snow on top of everything, including our touring van

The view from room 12 combines a bit of fall with a winter scene

The view from room 12 combines a bit of fall with a winter scene

A good day to taste wine from Austria and the Southern Tyrol

A good day to taste wine from Austria and the Southern Tyrol

Clouds start to lift

Clouds start to lift

The mountains above Lans

The mountains above Lans

Denise and Jim outside of Sistrans as the sun starts to set

Denise and Jim outside of Sistrans as the sun starts to set

Sistrans at sundown

Sistrans at sundown

Finding the Beauty in a Rainy Day in Tyrol, Austria

Friday, September 27th, 2013

September 27

Rain, rain, go away, but tomorrow they promise a sunny day. Something like that. We took a short excursion from our home base in Lans, Austria to the Ötztal Valley to the west of Innsbruck for photography and a short hike along the longest and highest waterfall in Tyrol. Even though it rained, heavily at times, we found beauty between the clouds and raindrops.

BandOfClouds copy
ÖtztalWaterfallColors copy
LinJenniferNiederVillageRain copy
GroupÖtztalWaterfall copy
OetztalClouds copy

A Walk Around Salzburg Part One

Thursday, September 26th, 2013

September 25

Salzburg, Austria happens to be one of the prettiest small cities on our Southern Germany and Austria itinerary. Called the ‘Rome of the North,’ Salzburg, founded by the Romans, may have lost its Forum but in its place are magnificent statues, fountains, more than one horse bath and 37 churches and one synagogue.

Salzburg's fortress was built to protect the town and to impose the power of the ruler, a Prince Archbishop who ruled both on earth as well as provided a conduit to heaven

Salzburg’s fortress was built to protect the town and to impose the power of the ruler, a Prince Archbishop who ruled both on earth as well as provided a conduit to heaven

Parking in a tunnel carved out of the volcanic rock and used as a bomb shelter in World War II, we went on a slow amble around the city starting with the flower-filled Mirabell Gardens. The ruler of Salzburg was a Prince Archbishop with dominion over matters both earthly and worldly, and Mirabell was his country estate back when Salzburg was a much smaller place. Country estates for the rich were the places to get away from the odors of the city on a hot summer day (or night) and those who could afford it had more than one rural getaway.

Mirabell Castle and gardens

Mirabell Castle and gardens

From Mirabell we walked past the house where Salzburg’s most famous son, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, lived as an adult between his extensive travels around Europe. Down Steingasse, the city’s oldest lane and still bearing the tank tracks where an amorous GI tried to ram his tank down the narrow street on his way to a rendezvous at the nearby ‘House of Pleasure’ back in 1945. Older marks left by pilgrims in the 15th and 16th centuries still cover one old house’s door, helpful notes letting others know that the owner of the house would provide food or shelter.

A door with marks from pilgrims, notes to others left behind more than four centuries ago

A door with marks from pilgrims, notes to others left behind more than four centuries ago

Guiding tours in European for over 20 years