Photo credit: kuhnmi
This European heritage tour traces the Anabaptist/Mennonite story through Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, and the Netherlands. Visits to significant sites will bring to life the stories of Jakob Amman, Martin Luther, Michael Sattler, Pilgram Marpeck, and many other Reformation and Anabaptist leaders. Other tour highlights include an afternoon cruise on the Rhine River, a visit to the Rijksmuseum, standing in caves where Anabaptists worshipped in secret, visiting Trachselwald Castle, riding a cable-car up a mountain, and visiting the Weierhof, a semi-communal Mennonite village. Experienced tour storyteller Ayold Fanoy will share insights as you travel in these beautiful countries that were so important to our Anabaptist ancestors.
Anabaptist Story in Europe Tour, July 28-August 10, 2020, escorted by Ayold Fanoy
This tour can be paired with once-in-ten years Oberammergau Passion Play tickets & a 2-night hotel stay, August 10-12, 2020. PLAY TICKET PACKAGE MUST BE BOOKED ASAP.
Tour fare per person:
CAD: Double occupancy $5,729; single supplement $591
USD: Double occupancy $4,583; single supplement $473
Important note: Costs could increase if you sign up less than 90 days before a tour begins
- Hotel accommodations
- Group airport transfers
- Coach transportation within the tour
- Canal ride and river cruise
- All breakfasts and all dinners, 2 lunches
- Expert local tour leader
- All entrance fees included in itinerary
- Gratuities for drivers, guides, and group meals
- International airfare
- Arrival airport transfer if separate from group
- Departure transfer (to airport or Oberammergau)
- 10 lunches
- Drinks with meals
- Travel medical (out-of-country emergency) and cancellation/interruption insurance
Travel medical (out-of-country emergency) insurance and cancellation/interruption insurance are not mandatory but are highly recommended.
All rates shown are in effect at the time of printing (June 2019). Although every effort is made to maintain the prices as established, TourMagination does reserve the right to adjust prices on this tour should it become necessary. The published price is guaranteed when paid in full. We accept check/cheque payments, and credit card payments. Please note that payments made using credit cards will be charged a 3% fee.
Day 1: Tuesday, July 28: Haarlem
Arrive at the Amsterdam airport, and transfer to the hotel to meet your fellow travellers over dinner.
Day 2: Wednesday, July 29: Haarlem
Begin your experience of Amsterdam with a guided city tour. Visit the Singel Mennonite Church. Browse the Rijksmuseum, known for its collection of Dutch Golden Age works, to see pieces by world-renowned artists including Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Jan Steen. Be sure to see the museum’s collection of Mennonite works too! Then climb aboard a river boat for a leisurely tour of Amsterdam’s canals.
Day 3: Thursday, July 30: Haarlem
Take a guided walking tour of Haarlem, a charming medieval city just outside Amsterdam. Visit the Mennonite church in Haarlem, then tour the Corrie ten Boom Museum to learn about one woman’s courageous efforts to help Jewish people escape the Holocaust. In the afternoon, enjoy free time to explore Haarlem on your own.
Day 4: Friday, July 31: Asperen
Following an early breakfast, tour the impressive Aalsmeer flower auction where 20 million flowers from around the world are traded daily. Learn about the Menno Simons story with stops at the hidden church at Pingjum, and the Menno Simons monument at Witmarsum—the village where he was born. Visit Zaanse Schans, a historic Dutch village with traditional houses, working windmills, and artisans crafting things like wooden shoes and cheese. Finish the day’s explorations with a visit to Asperen to hear the story of Dirk Willems.
Day 5: Saturday, August 1: Weierhof
In Köln (Cologne), Germany, visit the twin-towered Gothic cathedral. Then explore the heart of the city on your own during free time. Drive to the historic town of Boppard. Relax and enjoy the scenery on a Rhine River cruise as you travel from Boppard to Oberwesel. In the fertile Palatinate region, visit the semi-communal Mennonite village of Weierhof. Tonight you’ll be hosted in the homes of its residents.
Day 6: Sunday, August 2: Mont Sainte Odile
Worship with your new friends at a church service in Weierhof. Then take a tour of the village, followed by a visit to the Weierhof’s Mennonitische Forschungsstelle, Germany’s only major Mennonite archives. Say farewell and make your way to the Struthof Concentration Camp. The memorials and displays will remind you of the atrocities committed during the Second World War.
Day 7: Monday, August 3: Mont Sainte Odile
Drive through the Alsace region of France, where Jakob Amman lived, to hear the Amish origin story. Stop in Strasbourg for a city walk featuring the Mennonite history in this area, including learning about Pilgram Marpeck. Have lunch in the quaint town of Riquewihr, known for its narrow streets and half-timbered houses. See medieval and early Renaissance art in the Unterlinden museum in Colmar.
Day 8: Tuesday, August 4: Emmental
In the 17th and 18th century, the Swiss Jura was a place of refuge for persecuted Swiss Anabaptists from the Emmental and elsewhere. Visit one of the secret Anabaptist caves of worship, known as the Little Church of the Goats. Stop at a cheese factory in Bellelay, and enjoy some of their fine cheeses over lunch. See Bellelay Abbey, a medieval monastery where some residents converted during the Protestant Reformation. At the Swiss Mennonite archives in Jeanguisboden, you’ll see the old Frochauer Bible, copies of the Martyrs Mirror, old song books, and family trees with well-known Anabaptist family names. Then visit another secret Anabaptist meeting place—the Anabaptist Bridge.
Day 9: Wednesday, August 5: Emmental
Begin the day with a walking tour of Bern, where in 1711 a group of Anabaptists were expelled on three boats on the Rhine. At a cemetery and Reformed church in Steffisburg, learn about connections with the Amish. Visit the Yoder house.
Day 10: Thursday, August 6: Emmental
Visit Langnau and gain a better understanding of local history in a visit to the cultural museum. See the Langnau Mennonite Church, the oldest in the world, and look for familiar names in its cemetery. Stop at the Kambly Cookie factory in Trubsachen. In Hinterhutten, visit the Täuferversteck (Anabaptist hiding place), a typical Swiss homestead with a hidden room to hide Anabaptists from their persecutors. Then reflect at another secret Anabaptist cave, the Yoder Cave.
Day 11: Friday, August 7: Emmental
Spend today appreciating the unparalleled beauty of the Swiss Alps. Take a cog rail train or a cable car to the top of a mountain where you’ll see amazing panoramic views of the surrounding countryside.
Day 12: Saturday, August 8: Neuhausen
In the Emmental region, visit key sites including Trachselwald Castle, a fortress once used to imprison Anabaptists. Hear the story of the Anabaptist Hans Haslibacher and visit the farm where some of his descendants still live today. Stop at the Affoltern cheese factory. Take a wagon ride up the Anabaptist climb (Täuferstieg) near Schleitheim where the first Anabaptist confession was written in 1527. Reflect at a unique monument placed in 2004 by Reformed Church leaders as an act of repentance and reconciliation between Anabaptists and their former persecutors. Learn more at the Schleitheim Museum. Cap off the day with a visit to Schaffhausen and the picturesque Rhine Falls, the largest waterfall in Europe.
Day 13: Sunday, August 9: Bregenz
Worship this morning at the Zürich Grossmünster, an important site in the history of the Reformation. Spend time in Zürich’s city centre for an Anabaptist walking tour of sites related to the birth of Anabaptism in 1525. Over dinner tonight, reflect as a group on all you have seen and learned.
Day 14: Monday, August 10
Visit the magnificent Neuschwanstein Castle this morning. Say farewell to your travelling companions as you depart for home, or continue to Oberammergau in Germany to see the Passion Play.
Terms, conditions and restrictions apply; pricing, availability, and other details subject to change and/ or apply to US or Canadian residents. Please confirm details and booking information with your travel advisor.