Black Forest, Bavaria, the Tyrol and the Oberammergau Passion Play

17 Glorious Days

  • Best seats for the Passion Play
  • Leisurely 2,3 & 4 night stays
  • Small group size from just 10 to 28
  • Genuinely inclusive, no extra costs
  • Designed for Australians & New Zealanders
  • 'My Time' guaranteed

Tour Overview

Wander down cobblestoned streets in stunning villages, explore Ludwig’s fairytale castles, taste wine on the ‘route Alsace du Vin’, take in the spectacular mountain views from Hitler’s Eagles Nest and the undulating ‘Sound of Music’ hills near beautiful, baroque Salzburg. As a finále experience the extraordinary Oberammergau Passion Play!


  • Stay 4 nights in Schonwald in the centre of the Black Forest
  • Take the funicular up to Heidelberg Castle, visit Gengenbach, a ‘pearl among the Black Forest towns’
  • Ride the ‘Petit Train’ in picture perfect Colmar and taste wine on the ‘route Alsace du Vin’ 
  • Cruise on the River Ill in  Strasbourg and explore Lake Titisee by boat
  • Relax in gothic Freiburg and stay 3 nights in picturesque Füssen
  • Wander around the amazing gardens of the ‘Flower Island’ of Mainau
  • Cross Lake Constance to Meersburg and visit the old harbour of Lindau
  • Explore Neuschwanstein Castle on a guided tour
  • Enjoy the mountain cable car ride up to Tegelberg
  • Explore the extravagant Linderhof Palace and gardens
  • See the most beautiful church in Europe –  Wieskirche
  • Stay 3 nights in an Alpine style hotel in Kirchberg
  • Explore picturesque Rattenberg and in the old town of Innsbruck see the Golden Roof 
  • Relax with a day free to explore the old town of Kirchberg
  • Ride on a steam train along the picturesque Ziller Valley
  • Visit the chic ski resort of Mayrhofen and drive over the magnificent Fern and Gerlos Alpine Passes
  • Admire the Krimmler Wasserfälle (Waterfalls)
  • Stay 3 nights in the delightful Spa town of Bad Reichenhall
  • Explore Hitler’s Eagles Nest and visit Berchtesgaden and the historic town Salt Mines
  • Enjoy a full day to explore Salzburg
  • See ‘The Sound of Music’ church at Lake Mondsee
  • Discover the stunning village of  Hallstatt
  • Enjoy a special dinner at St Peter Stiftskeller, Salzburg’s oldest restaurant dating back to the 1500’s
  • Enjoy your ‘grand finále’ - stay 2 nights in selected 4 star accommodation and enjoy Category 1 ‘best in house’ seating for the marvellous Oberammergau Passion Play

Tour Itinerary

DAY 1: Frankfurt welcome

Your tour commences this evening in wonderful Frankfurt: a city of contrasts – from modern skyscrapers to beautifully maintained old buildings. Join us tonight for a welcome drink before dinner in your hotel. This is an ideal chance to meet, and get to know, your Tour Manager and fellow travellers. 
*13 June departure stays at Steigenberger Airport Hotel & 5 September departure stays at Hilton Frankfurt.


Maritim Hotel

DAY 2: Heidelberg, Gengenbach and the Black Forest

We spend the morning in the nearby ancient university town of Heidelberg. Set in the wooded Neckar Valley, it is noted for its twin-towered bridge and red sandstone castle. We have included a funicular ride up to the castle and entrance to the castle courtyard and terrace. From here you can enjoy the magnificent views of the city and Neckar River below. Entrance is also included to see the world’s largest wine barrel and the German Apothecary Museum. Later, we drive deep into the Black Forest to enjoy an afternoon stop in Gengenbach. With its watchtowers and market square surrounded by lovely half-timbered houses, it is easy to 
see why it has been called a “pearl among the Black Forest towns”.
We continue to nearby Schonwald, where we spend the next four nights.
Hotel Ochsen, Schonwald

DAY 3: Strasbourg cruise and Triberg

Our morning will be spent in Strasbourg, the seat of the European Parliament. On arrival, we board a glass topped boat to enjoy a river cruise around the heart of this beautiful city. Retaining its old world charm, there are three bridges spanning the River Ill, massive fortified towers and the pedestrian streets around the Place de la Cathédrale and Place Broglie are a delight. Take time to enjoy one of the numerous cosy bistros and cafés.
Late afternoon and evening is at leisure in Triberg, in the very centre of the Black Forest, famous for its cake, and home to the world’s largest cuckoo clock and Germany’s highest waterfall - Triberger Wasserfälle.



DAY 4: Colmar and the Alsace Wine Road

Crossing the Rhine in France, we spend the morning in postcard perfect Colmar. On arrival we will enjoy an orientation tour through the heart of town on the ‘Petit Train’. Brightly painted, half-timbered houses on narrow, twisting lanes make a perfect backdrop. The River Lauch winds its way through the centre, known as the Little Venice district.
Your afternoon will be spent driving along the Route Alsace du Vin (Alsace Wine Road). Stretching from Strasbourg to Colmar, we pass the pretty villages of Ribeauvillé, Riquewihr and Kaysersberg on this famous wine road. At one of the local wineries we will stop to enjoy a wine tasting of various classic local wines.



DAY 5: Lake Titisee and gothic Freiburg

This morning we visit the capital of the Black Forest – the gothic city of Freiburg. Sensitively restored, Freiburg is one of the most charming of German cities, located where the Black Forest meets the Rhine Plain. Arcaded shopping streets and little streams lead through the old town to its great gothic cathedral.
Lunch today is included on the terrace of a restaurant on the shores of Lake Titisee, offering the most splendid panoramic views across the lake to the forest. Afterwards, enjoy a cruise on the crystal clear waters of this famous lake and time to explore in the lake resort town of Titisee. Your evening is at leisure in Schonwald.



DAY 6: Flower Island of Mainau to Bavaria

Heading south-east we soon arrive on the western shore of Lake Constance. Crossing a short causeway we visit the Flower Island of Mainau where a local guide leads us through the 111 acres of beautiful gardens and landscaped grounds. Originally created nearly 200 years ago by Prince Nikolaus, these magnificent botanical gardens also boast an arboretum and an Italian rose garden complete with pergolas, sculptures, fountains and 500 varieties of roses. In summer it is splendid with its rhododendrons along with huge displays of over 350,000 flowers.
After catching a ferry across Lake Constance to Meersburg, we follow the northern lakeshore to enjoy an afternoon break in the old harbour town of Lindau. Later we continue to Füssen, in the mountains of Bavaria.


Hotel Hirsch in Füssen

DAY 7: Neuschwanstein Castle and Tegelberg

We start the day in Hohenschwangau. On one hill overlooking the little village you have the neo-gothic castle of Hohenschwangau and on the other side above the village is a wooded mountain spur and  Neuschwanstein – the fairytale castle of ‘mad’ King Ludwig. We take a leisurely stroll up the wooded road to enjoy a guided tour through Neuschwanstein Castle’s state rooms, king’s apartments, halls and throne
room; all reminiscent of a Wagner operatic saga.
Later this afternoon we will take a cable car ride up to Tegelberg to take in the excellent views down onto the fairytale castles far below. Your evening is at leisure in Füssen. 
Please note: The guided tour through Neuschwanstein Castle incorporates climbing up and down a number of staircases and, as there are no elevators, the inside visit to the castle this morning may not be suitable for those with walking difficulties or limitations.



DAY 8: Linderhof Palace, Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Wieskirche

There is nothing quite like a day in the mountains! Our first stop will be a visit to Linderhof, an extravagant French Rococo Palace – yet another of King Ludwig’s amazing creations.  Lunchtime will be in the beautifully decorated, mountain resort town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen.  ‘My Time’ to relax in one of the traditional beer gardens or restaurants, or shop in the broad pedestrian mall. In the afternoon we drive through Bavarian farmlands and forests to make a stop in arguably the most beautiful church in Europe – Wieskirche (the ‘Church in the Meadows’). Surrounded by green fields, the interior of this World Heritage Listed church is an astounding Rococo creation. 

DAY 9: Innsbruck, Rattenberg and Kirchberg

Taking the beautiful Fern Pass across the Bavarian Alps, we descend into the Inn Valley to visit the nearby winter resort city of Innsbruck. There will be time at leisure to explore the sights of the Alstadt (old town) such as the Hofburg Imperial Palace, cobblestoned streets and the renowned Golden Roof.
Later, we follow the dramatic Inn Valley through the rolling Tyrolean hills and villages, to enjoy a short afternoon stop in the pretty village of Rattenberg. We then continue to Kirchberg where we stay for the next three wonderful nights.
Hotel Kirchberger Hof or Hotel Metzgerwirt

DAY 10: ‘My Time’ in the Austrian Tyrol

Your day is entirely free to explore the old town of Kirchberg and maybe the nearby town of Kitzbuhel. Why not take a cable car up one of the surrounding peaks and enjoy lunch in one of the mountain top restaurants. Alternatively relax on a sun terrace and soak up the glorious surroundings.

DAY 11: Ziller Valley, Mayrhofen and the Krimml waterfalls

An exciting day in the mountains. Driving to Jenbach we board the old wooden carriages of the historical Zillertalbahn steam train*. Sit back and relax as the train puffs its way up the full length of the Ziller Valley, through conifer forests and rich green meadows, to reach the chic ski resort of Mayrhofen.
This is a perfect place to enjoy lunchtime amongst the numerous shops, cafés and restaurants surrounded by the soaring Alps. Meeting up with our coach we enter the Hohe Tauern National Park and drive over the spectacular 1630 metre high, 12 km long Gerlos Pass. Stopping at Krimml we visit the Krimmler Wasserfälle (Waterfalls) – the highest in Austria – where we enjoy a walk along the valley pathway to a number of spectacular viewpoints. 
*12 June, 22 August & 5 September departures travel on the Achensee Cog Railway from Jenbach to Achensee then by coach to Mayrhofen.



DAY 12: Berchtesgaden, Eagle’s Nest and Salt Mines

A fascinating day ahead as we visit Berchtesgaden and Hitler’s Eagles Nest. We take a breathtaking bus journey up the winding Kehlstein road and then, joined by a local guide, and in Hitler’s personal luxurious brass elevator, we ascend inside the mountain for a guided tour of the Kehlsteinhaus. This alpine retreat is better known as Hitler’s Eagles Nest and the mountain views are spectacular.
Lunchtime will be spent in the picturesque and historic town of Berchtesgaden, before we visit the old Salt Mines. After dressing up in a salt miner’s uniform, we enjoy a fun filled ride on a small train deep underground, take wooden slides (or steps) and then float on a barge across a crystal clear underground lake, beautifully illuminated by a light show. Next stop, the delightful spa town Bad Reichenhall, where we stay three nights.
*5 September departure will stay at the Amber Hotel Bavaria, Bad Reichenhall
Wyndham Grand Bad Reichenhall Axelmannstein

DAY 13: Salzburg and ‘My Time’

We have allowed a full day to explore Salzburg – the baroque city of Mozart. A local guide will take us on a walking tour of this enchanting city, including several locations used in the film ‘The Sound of Music’. Your afternoon will be at leisure to explore the myriad of narrow, cobblestoned streets, ornate squares and churches, fascinating shops and traditional coffee houses. The views from the enormous Festung (Fortress),
sitting high above the city, are magnificent. This evening we have included dinner at St Peter Stiftskeller, Salzburg’s oldest restaurant dating back to the 1500’s.

DAY 14: Lake Mondsee, Hallstatt and Salzburg

Our day is spent exploring the Austrian Lakes District! After a leisurely start we spend the morning beside Lake Mondsee and visit the church made famous in the wedding scene of the film ‘The Sound of Music’. Later, we drive deep into the Lakes District to enjoy lunchtime exploring the picturesque town of Hallstatt. Set on a rocky terrace jutting into the quiet dark water of the lake and surrounded by towering peaks,
this is considered the oldest inhabited village in Europe and perhaps the most beautiful in Austria.
Our return journey to Bad Reichenhall takes us alongside Wolfgangsee (lake) and around Lake Fuschl. Our farewell dinner this evening is in our hotel’s traditional Bavarian restaurant, Axelstüberl.

DAY 15: To Oberammergau

Bidding Austria farewell, we will be transferred to our Oberammergau area hotel where we meet with our specialist Oberammergau Tour Manager who will be with us until the end of tour in Munich.
In the Oberammergau area

DAY 16: An incredible Oberammergau Passion Play Experience

An easy start to the day before we enjoy time exploring the colourful village of Oberammergau with its beautiful houses and buildings adorned with 'Lüftlmalerei' – ornately painted murals depicting assorted religious scenes.
Throughout the afternoon and evening we enjoy the huge spectacle that is the Passion Play from our Category 1 seating. The famous Passion Play has been performed every ten years since 1634, a time when the Thirty Year’s War and Bubonic Plague were ravaging Europe causing so much suffering and death. With a backdrop of Kofel Peak and surrounded by the Ammergau Mountains, the massive open-air stage erupts with colour, music, song and up to 2,000 local inhabitants enacting the story of the Passion of Christ.



DAY 17: To Munich

This morning we drive to nearby Munich where your tour ends on arrival. Drop off points will be in the city centre and Munich airport. We recommend you book flights or trains that depart Munich after 2pm.

Incredible Value Inclusions

Over $1,700 value of extras already included 

  • Category 1 seating for the Oberammergau Passion Play
  • ALL excursions, scenic drives, sightseeing and entrances as described 
  • Fully escorted by our experienced Tour Manager
  • Travel in a first class air-conditioned touring coach
  • 16 nights specially selected hotel accommodation 
  • Hotel porterage (1 bag per person)
  • 30 Meals – including breakfast daily (B), lunch on the shores of Lake Titisee (L) and 13 dinners (D) 
  • Hand Selected Albatross Experiences – Strasbourg river cruise, 
  • Lake Titisee cruise, cable car ride to Tegelberg and Ziller steam train ride, local Austrian folk show
  • Local guides as described in the itinerary
  • ALL tips to your Tour Manager, Driver and Local Guides
  • Personal audio system whilst on tour
  • Free WiFi on most coaches and at hotels

NO additional ‘on tour’ costs!


Dates and Prices

Start Date End Date Price Per Person Availability
25 May 2020 10 Jun 2020 NZD $9,045 Sold Out
13 Jun 2020 29 Jun 2020 NZD $9,045 Space Limited - Call Now
29 Jun 2020 15 Jul 2020 NZD $9,045 Sold Out
27 Jul 2020 12 Aug 2020 NZD $9,045 Sold Out
10 Aug 2020 26 Aug 2020 NZD $9,045 Sold Out
22 Aug 2020 7 Sep 2020 NZD $9,045 Sold Out
5 Sep 2020 21 Sep 2020 NZD $9,045 Sold Out

Oberammergau Passion Play - FAQs

What is the history of the Oberammergau Passion Play?

The Passion Play origins date back to 1633, when the community of Oberammergau found itself under threat from the Bubonic plague – the town pledged that if God were to spare them death, they would perform a play each decade to celebrate the life and death of Jesus. Thankfully the vow appeared to work, and as a result the locals were true to their promise – the very first play happened during Pentecost in 1634, where a stage was erected in the local cemetery. Nowadays the performances take place on a much larger scale, with over 2000 of the village’s residents working together to ensure the spectacle honours the vow of their ancestors. Such is the dedication of the residents, all male actors performing in the plays take part in a “Hair Decree”– from Ash Wednesday in 2019, all men are requested to let the hair on their heads and face grow to ensure they have an authentic look in time for 2020!


What are the performance dates?

There will be up to 103 performances between 16 May and 4 October 2020.
There are usually 3, but sometimes up to 5 performances each week, on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. 
Albatross Tours will be operating 7 unique touring itineraries with a total of 78 tour departures which include the Passion Play.

How long is the play?

The play is 5 hours long. It is held throughout the afternoon and evening with a 3-hour break for an included 3 course dinner. Based on the 2010 programme we are assuming there will be 11 Acts featured in the 2020 Passion Play programme.  

Performance times 

19 May - 16 August | Part I : 2:30 pm - 5:00 pm Part II : 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Later in the season when the sun sets earlier the times change by one hour
17 August – 4 October | Part I : 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm Part II 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm

Do we have good seats?

Yes, the best! You will have Category 1 seating – the best seats in house. 
Albatross Tours - Oberammergau Seating  Plan - Category 1A

How many seats are there?

The audience section is fully covered and contains 4,720 comfortable covered seats. 

What language is the show in?

The shows will be exclusively in German. You can buy a programme with an English translation of the text on the day of the performance.

If the stage is open air what happens if it rains?

The massive open air stage has a fabulous backdrop of Kofel Peak and is surrounded by the Ammergau Mountains, all of which enhances the drama. However if it does rain, at the push of a button a giant mechanical cover will extend out and over the stage. 

How big is the show?

Enormous! There will be 100 choristers, a 55-piece orchestra and 2,000 actors - all locals. There will be music, singing, vivid and colourful stage settings, tableaux vivants (living pictures) depicting biblical scenes, speeches and dramatic re-enactments of the story of the Passion of Christ - from his entry into Jerusalem until his death on the cross and his subsequent resurrection.  

Who are the actors? 

They are all locals, and to be eligible they must have lived in Oberammergau for at least 20 years. This means that about 3,000 of the town’s 5,000 inhabitants hold the right to perform; since 2000 people participate, that’s more than 60 percent of the eligible townsfolk!

What is the ‘Hair decree’?

Such is the dedication of the residents, all male actors performing in the play take part in a ‘Hair Decree’. From Ash Wednesday in 2019, all men will be requested to let the hair on their heads and face grow to ensure they have an authentic look in time for 2020! (The ‘Romans’ have shaved heads!)

Who organises the Passion Play?

The local community have an organisation called ‘Passionsspiele Oberammergau’. They appoint the artistic director and his team. They consolidate all ticket sales in co-ordination with all attached accommodation allocations in Oberammergau and within the immediate area. 

Where is Oberammergau?

Located in Bavaria about 100 kms south of Munich, Oberammergau is nestled in a beautiful valley in the Ammergau Alps. The village is known for its beautifully painted houses and woodcarving shops. The whole region is delightful. Nearby towns include lively Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Unterammergau, Ettal with its magnificent Kloster Abbey, Murnau am Staffelsee - close to Lake Staffelsee, and the spa town of Bad Kohlgrub.

View our range of Oberammergau Passion Play 2020 Tours