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Discovering STEM in Switzerland and Germany (3/22/19 - 3/30/19)

Passports & Gratuities
Mandatory meeting (students AND parents) Wednesday, February 27 at 7pm in room 6! Remember to bring in $100 for gratuities for our tour manager and bus driver to Mrs. Schooler or Ms. Levesque. Thank you!
Posted on 9/24/18 , Updated on 2/25/19


Tour Details:

Departure City: San Francisco
Duration: 9 Days
Overnights: Lucerne 2, Freiburg 2, Munich 3

Cultural Connections:

Munich by Bike
Vauban Tour and Energy Eco-Challenge

Field Trips & Extensions:

Vauban Tour and Energy Eco-Challenge
Munich by Bike

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will understand how the Alps were formed and see the effects of glaciation on the geography of the Alpine lands and the opportunities this has now given in travel, leisure and tourism.
  • Students will learn about green technology and environmental advances by visiting Vauban—an innovative town that is a model of sustainability.
  • Students will learn about the research, technology and production processes involved in the modern automobile industry.


Mar 22, 2019 Overnight Flight
Depart from the USA.
Mar 23, 2019 Lucerne
Welcome to Switzerland! Upon arrival in beautiful Zurich, meet your ACIS Tour Manager and drive to charming Lucerne. Renowned for its well-preserved medieval architecture and nestled amid scenic mountains, the city stands on the shore of pristine Lake Lucerne. A walking tour will show you the magnificent Lion Monument, a touching tribute to Swiss mercenaries who died while fighting during the French Revolution, and Chapel Bridge, a 1300s engineering marvel that crosses the Reuss River. Linking the city’s Old and New Towns, it’s the world’s oldest covered bridge. (B,D)
Mar 24, 2019 Lucerne
The day begins with a thrilling ascent of the legendary, 6,994-foot-tall Mount Pilatus via cable car and the world’s steepest cog railway. Along the way, don your scholar’s cap as you enjoy an introduction to the principles used by the engineers to design and erect the cable car. After marveling at the summit views of 73 alpine peaks, you’ll return to Lucerne for a guided tour of the fascinating Verkehrshaus Museum, which chronicles milestones in transportation and communication. (B,D)
Mar 25, 2019 Freiburg
In the morning, bid farewell to Lucerne and give your technology IQ another boost with a guided tour of a Swiss hydroelectric power station—one of 556 in the country. Then you’ll cross the border into Germany and enjoy a scenic drive through the world-famous Black Forest. Upon arriving in Freiburg, take a walking tour of this picturesque city, during which you’ll stroll past attractions such as the Münster Cathedral, a stunning masterwork of Gothic architecture. (B,D)
Mar 26, 2019 Freiburg
Today starts with a guided tour of nearby Vauban, a model of environmental planning and eco-friendly urban living where residents embrace innovative mobility concepts, renewable power sources and plus-energy housing design. Enjoy an included lunch at a historic Black Forest Mill before your immersion in sustainable energy practices continues with a visit to an intriguing Plus-Energy town. Equipped with solar panels, biogas digesters and small hydroelectric plants, the town generates 300 percent more energy than its citizens require. Later, return to Freiburg and enjoy more of Germany’ sunniest and warmest city at your own pace, perhaps practicing your German as you order a tasty, cheese-filled maultaschen along the way. (B,L)
Mar 27, 2019 Munich
Today you’ll head for historic Munich, the capital of the state of Bavaria and a thriving center of technology and scientific discovery. Start with a visit to the riveting Deutsches Museum, home to 28,000 exhibit items spanning 50 different fields of science and technology and filled with hands-on activities. In the evening, visit the city’s sprawling Olympic Park, built for the 1972 Summer Olympics. (D)
Mar 28, 2019 Munich
Enjoy a unique perspective of this remarkable city’s hidden gems with a bike tour that combines cultural highlights with an eco-tutorial on the regeneration of natural spaces along the Isar River. In the afternoon, trade in two-wheel transportation for four-wheeled vehicles during a tour of the BMW factory, a sterling example of German technology and engineering in car manufacturing. (B,D)
Mar 29, 2019 Munich
This morning depart for Salzburg for a sightseeing tour with a local guide shows you the lovely, manicured gardens in front of the Mirabell Palace, the Sound of Music Churchyard and the stunning Baroque Dom Cathedral. In the afternoon, we take you out to the Hallein Salt Mine, where you journey deep beneath the ground to learn more about how this precious mineral deeply influenced Salzburgā€™s (or, literally, Salt Town) history. Besides, you get to slide down the long wooden slides the miners used and traverse a dark lake deep inside the mountain mine. Return to Munich in time for dinner. (B,D)
Mar 30, 2019 Departure
Depart for the USA. (B)
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Tour Cost:

Cost Per Traveler: $3,714
Cost breakdown
Program Fee: $3,914
Early Registration Incentive: -$200
Total Group Fees 1:
1 Valid through 12/1/18 with deposit of $495

Additional Fees (as applicable)
Adult Surcharge: $95
Single Room Supplement: $665
Double Room Supplement: $315
Ultimate Protection Plan: $270
Comprehensive Protection Plan: $225

Full Payment Deadline: 12/1/18

What to See


S Main Street

This large street has everything when it comes to shopping hot spots. Be sure to also explore the side streets which have many little, local shops as well.


There are several markets in Lucerne. The weekly flea market on Saturday, Crafts Market every month on the Weinmarkt.  In Moosstrasse, the modern part of Lucerne hosts a Saturday morning farmers’ market with organic vegetables, cheeses, homemade jams and more.


Hugendubel, Marienplatz 22
This bookstore, the largest in Munich, offers many titles in English, including travel books and helpful maps.

Exatmo, U-Bahn: Giselastrasse
One of the most unusual clothiers in Munich, Exatmo sells garments inspired by the puffy sleeves and dramatic flair of 17th-century fashions.

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New Museum of Art, Europaplatz 1

Over an area of 2,100 square meters, the museum  features temporary exhibitions, including significant modern works of art, as well as exhibits from the museum's own collection with an emphasis on 19th and 20th century landscape painting and international art from 1960.  The museum is open daily except Monday, and there are guided tours in English available upon request.

Bourbaki-Panorama, Löwenplatz 11

Before there were cinemas, spectators visited other visual sensations.  Citizens of Lucerne were marveled by this gigantic circular painting when it was completed in 1881, and it continues to be put on display to this day.  The huge round painting (over 1000 square meters) depicts the retreat of the defeated French Eastern Army in the winter of the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871) at Les Verrières in Switzerland.  There are guided tours around the exhibit upon request.

Swiss Transport Museum and IMAX film theatre

The Swiss Transport Museum is the largest transport museum in Europe. It consists of the Museum of Transport, Switzerland's only IMAX Theatre and large planetarium, the Hans Erni Museum, along with numerous other attractions.


BMW Museum, U-Bahn: Olympiapark
A tour of this museum, adjacent to the company's main plant and headquarter building, traces the history of the famous firm that was founded in 1916. High performance sports models, luxury automobiles, and motor bikes from throughout the ages are on display, and numerous interactive multimedia exhibits on the company's future projects make it worth seeing. Open daily.

Deutsches Museum, U-Bahn: Fraunhoferstraße
Allegedly the largest technological museum in the world, this building complex is located on an island in the Isar River. Extensive interactive exhibits cover every phase of technology and science from the earliest flint tools to modern space and computer research. Seeing all of the museum's halls would take more than one day, so be sure to prioritize. Do not miss the lightning demonstration!  Open daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Museum Quarter, U-Bahn: Odeonsplatz
In this area, three of Germany's most famous art collections are housed. The Alte Pinakothek exhibits European art from the fourteenth to eighteenth centuries. Recently completely remodeled, the portraits feature works by world famous masters such as Dürer, Rubens, Rembrandt, Degas and Monet, to name just a few.

The Neue Pinakothek focuses instead on more recent art from the eighteenth through the nineteenth century.

The latest addition to the museum quarter is the Pinakothek der Moderne, featuring modern and contemporary art. The building and its exhibits are widely acclaimed and well worth a visit. All three museums are open daily, closed Monday.

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Glacier Garden

20 million years ago, Lucerne was a subtropical beach, shown by the palm leaves and fossiled mussels that were discovered.  Once the Ice Age hit, the area was covered by a glacier, which left potholes of impressive proportions.  Now, one can visit Glacier Garden a sort of theme park, museum, and natural moment in Lucerne.  There are education presenations, a hall of mirrors and also the famous Lion of Lucerne, an intriguing monument sculpted into the wall of a former sandstone quarry.  Open 364 days a year.

City Wall, Old Town

In the Old Town of Lucerne, the marvelous 14th century wall provides breathtaking views of the rooftops of the old city, the lake and the mountains. It has 9 watchtowers, each in a different architectural style.

Chapel Bridge, Old Town

Originally built in 1333, the length of this bridge features 120 captioned triangular paintings from the early 1500s that chronicle the city's history. The paintings feature St. Mauritius and St. Leodegar, the patron saints of Lucerne.  Watch the rafters because large spiders are known to spin intricate webs.




Olympic Park and Tower, U-Bahn: Olympiapark
The Olympiaturm is the television tower built in 1968 for Munich's 1972 Olympic Summer Games. It is located in the midst of the city's Olympic facilities, including major competition venues, the Olympic Village, and the vast Olympic Park. An elevator takes you 623 feet up the tower to a terrace with a fantastic panorama of the city, and the Bavarian Alps. Also available in the park are rollerblade rentals (passports required!), a skating ring, and indoor swimming at the Olympic Aquatic Center. The tower is open daily.

Marienplatz, U-Bahn: Marienplatz
The center of Munich is a pedestrian-only area which has plenty of department stores, cafés, restaurants, and the colorful open-air market, Viktualienmarkt. It is often atmospheric in the evening with street acts and plenty of people out strolling. For a small fee, you can climb the stairs up St. Peter's bell tower, and enjoy a magnificent view of the city, on clear days as far south as the Alps! Only a five minute walk from here is the famous Hofbräuhaus. It is well worth a peek inside.

English Gardens, U-Bahn: Marienplatz
Here you’ll find a beautiful park next to the Isar River where people jog, stroll and sunbathe. At the Chinese Tower, near the center of the Gardens, there is a popular beer garden that serves lemonade, sodas and snacks, as well as the best Bavarian Lager for adult participants. Most locals bring their own snacks to the outdoor restaurant, buying only drinks there! Braver travelers may want to go for a swim in the appropriately named Eisbach, a cold, swift current in the park.


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Hofgarten, Stadthofstrasse 14, Old Town

This is a vegetarian restaurant in Hotel Hofgarten's leafy terrace garden where the cooks use the freshest vegetables from the daily fruit and vegetable markets. The ample menu offers specialties from braised aubergine to Thai curry to vegetarian Chögalipaschtetli (typical Swiss specialty).

Daniel Biller’s Hot Chocolate, Klosterstrasse 7

Switzerland is famous for its chocolate, so why not try their hot chocolate!


Donisl, Weinstrasse 1
Opened in 1715, Donisl is Munich's oldest beer hall.  It has a very relaxed and comfortable atmosphere and English is also spoken there. The menu offers standard Bavarian food and prices are inexpensive. A zither plays at noon and an accordion player entertains diners in the evening.

Hundskugel, Hotterstrasse 18
Another historic restaurant, Hundskugel is Munich's oldest tavern.  Local legend says that the menu is the same as it was in 1440. The alpine-style building is within walking distance of Marienplatz.

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Map may not reflect your final trip itinerary.

What's Included

  • Round-Trip Flights
  • Daily Breakfast and Dinner (unless otherwise noted)
  • Centrally Located Hotels
  • 24-Hour Tour Manager
  • Mount Pilatus by Cable Car and Railway
  • Verkehrshaus Museum with Guide
  • Swiss Hydroelectric Power Station with Guide
  • Vauban Tour and Energy Eco-Challenge
  • Deutsches Museum
  • Olympic Park
  • Munich by Bike
  • BMW Factory Tour
  • Nuclear Research Center

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